BLUE GOOSE FARM ~ Nicktown, PA

FROM OUR HANDS TO YOUR TABLE

Welcome to the blog.
Posted 10/6/2010 7:47am by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

By week's end, we should be out of this dreary, dampness. Funny how back in August, we were complaining about the heat...and no rain. Hmmm, how the good Lord works!

This will be the last week for peppers. They are dwindling in quantity and size. If you feel that you are getting "peppered out," freeze them. Cut them into slices or dice them and place in freezer bags. They'll keep for months this way. Note, they do lose their crunchiness, so plan on using them in a cooked dish - spaghetti sauce or omelet.

As you have seen potatoes in your box these past weeks, you'll be seeing them until the end of the season. Why? Potatoes grow well in our soil and climate. Cambria County is the second largest potato producing county in PA. It used to be the first! So, we have plenty of them. Also, they keep well. So if you are feeling "starched out," store them for later. There was mention in last week's newsletter as to proper storage methods. Try it. Then you'll know for years to come.

The CSA season is always slow to start as the produce is just blooming and coming in. Then July comes, and the weeks pass so quickly in a great blur of colorful veggies. Now the weeks begin to slow down again and we wonder, where did our summer go. We begin to make preparations to winterize the fields, hot houses, and remaining produce. In another month, Scott will finally be able to sit...truly sit and enjoy a moment...any moment! Then he'll begin to brainstorm on what to do next year. What to keep the same, what to do better, what to do differently. As we end our third CSA season, we find that we are successful with our business. There is much to learn, but much we've already learned. And we owe a huge part of that to our members. For without your investment in us each year, financially and communally, we couldn't do this. Thank you. Sincerely, we thank you!

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
red potatoes
onions
pie pumpkins
buttercup squash
peppers
carrots
celery or broccoli
apples

Culinary Corner
  • Always wash your produce!
  • Winter squash are delicious and are all similar in preparation. They do vary in flavor as some have stronger squash flavors than others, but they may all be substituted for one another in recipes. Get creative!
In the Kitchen
Buttercup Squash Pasta Sauce
1 buttercup squash
2-3 carrots, cut into 1/2" slices
1 onion, cut into eight wedges
olive oil
3 T butter
2 C half-n-half, (fat free is fine)
1/2 t sage
1/4 t cinnamon
1/4 C water
1 C Parmesan cheese, grated
1 C red or green peppers, diced for garnish
pasta, your choice

Cut squash in half, scoop out seeds and stringy flesh. Cut each half in half. Drizzle olive oil over each quarter. Place flesh side down in baking dish. Place carrots and onions around squash. Drizzle them with olive oil as well. Sprinkle salt and pepper over all for flavor. Bake in preheated 400 degree oven for 45 minutes.

When baked, scoop out carrots and onions and put into a food processor and puree. You may need to add a bit of water to make smoothing process easier. Set aside. Meanwhile, cut off skin from squash, cut into cubes and put into food processor and puree. Set aside.

In pot, melt butter. Add half-n-half and both purees. Stir until combined and creamy. Add sage and cinnamon. Continue to simmer and stir in half of cheese. If sauce is thicker than you'd like, add more water (or chicken broth for added flavor) until you reach your desired consistency.

Pour over cooked pasta. Stir in peppers for added flavor and color. Garnish with other half of cheese. Enjoy!

P-O-P Cakes (modified from Martha Stewart's Onions Unearthed)
(P-O-P stands for Potato-Onion-Pepper)
2 T butter, room temperature, plus more for tin
salt & pepper to taste
3 t brown sugar
3 t balsamic vinegar
3 t red wine vinegar
1 t rosemary
1 C red or green pepper, diced
1-2 onions (a red one is good for added color), sliced in rounds
2-3 potatoes, cleaned and grated
1 egg yolk, beaten

Grease a 6-cup muffin tin (a 12-cup will also work; just adjust amounts accordingly and watch the cook time). Lightly sprinkle each cup with salt and pepper. Sprinkle each cup with 1/2 t brown sugar. Drizzle each cup with 1/2 t each vinegar. Add one largely diced piece of pepper to each cup and cover with a slice of onion. Set aside.

Wash and grate potatoes. In a bowl, toss potatoes with rosemary and egg yolk. Season with salt and pepper. Spoon mixture evenly into each cup.  Dot each with butter.

Bake in preheated 400 degree oven until potatoes are tender and browned on edges, about 30 minutes. (Adjust time, if necessary, when using 12-cup muffin tin.)
Loosen cakes with knife. Pop out of tin and serve pepper-top up.

Have a wonderful week!
Scott & Chrissy
814-948-7188
sctfab@yahoo.com
Posted 9/29/2010 6:42am by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

Low and behold summer weather is behind us as Autumn began last week (September 22). The rough wind and rain late last week hurt us a bit. The hot house tunnels and our barn got beat up pretty badly. But we're all safe, so we count our blessings.

A frost is expected to hit later this week into the weekend. We are preparing for that by picking the last of the crops that can't stand the cold, covering our heartier crops, and removing the plastic and drip tape from our fields. This is a sure indication that the season is coming to a close...but we have four more weeks of enjoying the fresh flavors of fall!

We have decorative pumpkins for sale. Dennis had some at the Farmers Market last week, and you can expect to see them there every week until they're gone.

You'll see a new item in the box this week, garlic. These are Red Russian garlic - small in size but strong in flavor. Chrissy was making our swiss chard recipe when I walked in the house. I noted the scent and she said she'd used only one clove! The garlic is quite powerful. For you garlic lovers, enjoy - but expect no kisses!

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
red potatoes
red onions
peppers
cabbage
pie pumpkin
acorn squash (maybe a carnival squash)
garlic
parsley

Culinary Corner
  • Always wash your produce!
  • We've had a few members asking about proper potato storage (3-5 months). Here are some helpful hints: Never wash them until you're ready to use them; Potatoes like dark, cool, but not damp spots; If you have a dry basement or garage, these are great locations; If you have an enclosed porch, this is also good, but try keeping the potatoes in a brown bag to keep out the light; When storing in the house, be sure to keep separate from other produce like onions or peppers as they all give off gases that can affect and rot one another.
  • As mentioned in a previous newsletter...if you enjoy baking, try blending the "pulp" of the pumpkin and squash for more flavorful pies or breads. And if you really enjoy the natural flavor of these items, cut the amount of spices used in half, such as nutmeg or clove. They will still taste great!

In the Kitchen

Honeyed Orange Acorn Squash (serves 4)
2 acorn squash
2 T butter
3 T orange juice (thawed orange concentrate is better)
1/4 C honey
1/8 t nutmeg

Cut acorn in half lengthwise from stem to bottom tip and remove seeds. Place in baking dish cut side down. Add 1/2 C water to dish and cover with foil - this provides steam to the cooking process. Bake for 30 minutes in 400 degree oven.

Meanwhile, mix orange juice, honey, and nutmeg together. When squash is finished cooking for 30 minutes, remove from oven. Remove foil and carefully turn squash halves over. Add a 1/2 T of butter to each squash half and drizzle with the honeyed orange mixture. Return baking dish to oven and continue cooking for 30 minutes more without foil. When squash is completely finished cooking, let sit 5 minutes before serving. Serve in acorn hulls - it looks pretty and saves on dishes!

NOTE - Add brown sugar instead of honey, and cinnamon instead of nutmeg, add maple syrup instead of orange juice.


Welcome the month of October - where has this year gone?!
Scott & Chrissy
814-948-7188
sctfab@yahoo.com
Posted 9/22/2010 8:11am by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

We apologize for our error...we forgot to include the final cooking instructions for the Garden Lasagna recipe in this week's newsletter. For those interested, here they are:

Once lasagna is assembled, cover with foil and bake in 350 degree oven for 30 minutes. Remove foil and continue to bake for 20 minutes more. Cheese should be bubbling and brown around edges.

NOTE: This dish may be assembled the day before cooking and serving; in which case, you may need additional cooking time.

Enjoy!

Posted 9/22/2010 7:53am by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

This seems a bit like a holy week in our family. Potatoes are a staple in the Farabaugh family, and they are being harvested this week. You'll be seeing potatoes in your boxes, most likely, until the end of season. If you know you might want extra for cold storage this winter, please email us or call us so we may make arrangements with you to come by the farm or Johnstown market to pick up your order. 

It seems people are having difficulty finding canned pumpkin in the stores. We will have pie pumpkins, but we may be lucky to stretch the quantity among all the members for one week only.  (Remember, you can also substitute butternut squash puree in your favorite pumpkin recipe.) As for large decorative pumpkins, we will not be putting them in the boxes this year for lack of space. If you wish to purchase any decorative pumpkins, they will be available at the Farmers Market. Or you may contact us directly to make arrangements to come by the farm to purchase them.

There is a new item in the box this week - a new variety anyway - Hasta la Pasta. This is a type of spaghetti squash. It is orange in color both in the shell and the pulp. Prep it and eat it the same as the yellow variety.

Speaking of squash, the butternut squash soup recipe in last week's newsletter is good, but for some it may have been too "peppery." Kelleigh, our test kitchen guru, suggests to cut the amount of pepper in half to a 1/2 t, and try adding 1/2 t curry powder. She says another yummy addition is to add potatoes - white or sweet. Simply dice them up and add to soup with squash. You may have to add more cooking time to ensure the potatoes are tender before pureeing. Sounds good!

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
leeks
potatoes
spaghetti squash (Hasta la Pasta)
red pepper
carrot
swiss chard
lettuce
eggplant
tomatoes (round or plum)

Culinary Corner
  • Always wash your produce!
  • The carrots may seem small, but smaller carrots pack bigger taste. Cut them in penny slices. Steam and serve with a spat of butter and dill. YUM!
  • For a tasty Potato Leek Soup recipe, review our recipes on the website or Newsletter Week 1.
  • Saute eggplant, chard, red pepper, and leeks in olive oil with garlic, salt and pepper. Toss over cooked and shredded spaghetti squash. Colorful and healthy.

In the Kitchen

Tasty Swiss Chard  (quick and easy)
1 bunch swiss chard, rinsed and drained
olive oil
1 clove garlic
1/4 c parmesan cheese
1/4 c bread crumbs
15.5 oz can cannellini beans

Remove the swiss chard greens and chop the stems into small pieces; keep separate.  Boil the stems about 5 minutes, then add the greens and boil until they wilt.  Drain.

Saute garlic in olive oil.  Add chard, parmesan cheese, bread crumbs and beans.  Heat through and serve.


Garden Lasagna (a little time consuming, but delicious!)
2 -3 small eggplant, trimmed and sliced into 1/4" rounds
salt
olive oil
2 gloves garlic
1 bundle swiss chard, ribs removed
2 leeks, sliced into 1/4" rounds
2 eggs
1 16 oz container ricotta cheese
1-1/2 C Parmesan cheese, divided
1-1/2 C Mozzeralla cheese, divided
pepper to taste
1-1/2 C carrots, grated
your choice of marinara sauce

On baking sheet, place slices of eggplant and brush both sides with oil. Carefully broil them for 3 minutes per side. Watch as some may cook faster than others, in which case, remove them as they darken and crisp. Let them cool.

In pan, saute oil, garlic, and leeks and cook on medium heat until leeks soften. Add chard and cook for 4-5 minutes more until chard is tender. Set aside to cool.

In a bowl, stir together eggs, ricotta, half of parmesan and mozzeralla cheeses, and pepper. Add carrots, chard, and leeks. Mix well.

In a greased 13x9 baking dish, create layers in the following manner:
sauce, eggplant slices, cheese and veggie mixture, repeat until all ingredients used ending with sauce and remaining halves of cheeses on top.

 
Enjoy the last bits of summer weather!
Scott & Chrissy
814-948-7188
sctfab@yahoo.com

Posted 9/15/2010 6:00am by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

In April and May, our members begin to get excited about the start of the CSA. With 5 weeks of CSA left (after this week), our members are beginning to groan with saddness for the end of this season. But the good news is, the weather is cooler and heartier meals are made - a great time to begin making homemade soups (see recipes below)!

Our lettuce right now isn't as plentiful as we had hoped. We planted enough to provide for the remainder of the season. But with the hot weather, much of it went to seed much sooner than it should have gone. This week you'll receive a variety of head lettuce (resembles romaine), and we believe to have salad mix one more time, just not sure when.

Each year we learn from the previous year. We, Scott especially, have learned a lot this past summer particularly. Lettuce has been one of our study subjects this year and we've come to find which varieties grow best for us. Also which varieties grow best in June versus September. Hopefully, this will pay off for planning and planting next year's crops.

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
lettuce
cabbage
butternut squash
red onions
red and green peppers
purple OR green beans
tomatoes

Culinary Corner
  • Always wash your produce!
  • Try substituting butternut squash puree for pumpkin puree in a pumpkin bread recipe, YUM!
  • Be sure to visit our website for more recipes!

In the Kitchen
Butternut Squash Soup
(There are many versions of this soup. This is an easy, classic recipe in which any winter squash may be substituted.)

1 medium-large butternut squash (about 3-1/2 lbs, about 7-8 C)
3 T butter or olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 t ginger (or you may wish to use 1 t cumin)
1 t salt
1 t black pepper
6 C chicken broth (OR 4 C chicken broth, 2 C half-n-half)
thyme, cilantro, parsley
toasted squash seeds

Pierce squash with knife about four times. Bake in 400 degree oven for 1 hour. (Some may wish to half the squash, seed it, and bake same as above.) Once baked and cooled, scoop out seeds and pulp. The seeds may be rinsed, dried, lightly coated with cooking oil and baked in oven until browned, but not burned. Reserve to garnish the soup before serving. The pulp may be cut into tiny cubes.

Meanwhile, in a soup pot, melt butter and add onions. Cook until tender.  Stir in 4 C chicken broth and add ginger, salt, pepper. Add squash. Simmer about 20 minutes, stirring to break up squash. In batches, puree this mixture in a blender or food processor. Return puree to soup pot and add remaining 2 C chicken broth for a brothier soup OR 2 C half-n-half for a creamier soup. Warm through before serving.
Garnish with favorite herb and toasted seeds.

NOTE - For a spicier version, try adding cayenne pepper, red chili pepper, or chopped jalapeno pepper with seeds. For a heartier, meal-like soup, try adding 2 C diced potatoes, 1/2 C diced celery, 1/2 C diced, carrots.

Country Cabbage Soup
1 T olive oil
3 potatoes, skin on, diced
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 onion, halved and sliced
6 C chicken broth (OR 4 C broth 2 C water)
2 carrots, sliced
1 t caraway seeds
4 C shredded green cabbage
salt & pepper to taste
parsley
parmesan cheese or crumbled blue cheese

In soup pot, heat olive oil. Add and cook until tender onions & garlic. Careful not to brown or burn. Add broth, carrots, caraway seeds, and potatoes. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in cabbage. Simmer for 20 minutes more. Sprinkle in salt, pepper, parsley to taste. Serve warm with cheese sprinkled over top. Be sure to taste the soup as you cook especially when adding seasonings. Getting the seasonings right is important so your soup doesn't taste flat. Some people can't use but so much salt in their diet, so the saltiness of the selected cheeses helps.


Enjoy a wonderful week!
Scott & Chrissy
814-948-7188
sctfab@yahoo.com
Posted 9/8/2010 6:21am by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

The event of summer is behind us, though the weather still lingers. For how much longer, who knows...but we'll take it! It beats the alternative!

You'll see lettuce again. Also, a few new items this week - carrots and celery. The carrots had a difficult time growing this year with the weather and the deer. We did not get nearly as many as we had last year. We're not sure how many weeks we can distribute them. Enjoy what's here.

Our celery is darker, richer in color than what you're used to seeing in the stores. This is most likely due to the fact that the celery in the stores have been peeled down to the inner core and had the top leaves cropped off. We enjoy our flavor better, too.

This may be the last week for hot peppers. The Italian peppers didn't seem too popular. And our jalapeno pepper plants took a hit over the weekend with the burst of wind we received. Most of the plants blew over which is never good to have them lying on the ground. And they got "sun burned" without the protection of the leaves.

Farming is never easy - escpecially when trying to grow enough to feed over 200 families. You'll hear a farmer (like me) say, "It'll be better next year."  Sometimes "next year" doesn't come! It's a constant experiment. Glad I don't have to bear it alone since I have all of you. THANKS for your compliments and support throughout the season.

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
tomatoes
lettuce
spaghetti squash
carrots
celery
purple & green beans
jalapeno peppers

Culinary Corner...
  • Always wash your produce!
  • The leafy tops of the celery are the most flavorful parts of this plant. Chop up these leaves and use in potato salad, soups, or stews for enhanced flavor. 
  • The purple beans are beautiful in color and taste. When eaten fresh, you'll notice the internal green color and slightly sweet flavor. Once cooked, these beans magically turn green, so the kids can't complain about the "funny looking beans."
  • This is a great week to enjoy a good ol' fashion house salad with the simple ingredients of lettuce, tomatoes, carrots, celery, and green beans (or purple for fun color).

  • ...in the Kitchen
    Spaghetti Squash
    This is not a formalized recipe, rather simple suggestions on how to cook and prepare.

    Some recipes you'll read say to cut the squash in half before cooking. We suggest cooking it whole. Why? One, for safety reasons. These squash can sometimes be very hard and trying to cut them in half with a large knife can be dangerous. Two, it actually cooks better this way.

    So, pierce the outside shell in four to five spots around the squash. This creates vents for the internal heat to escape so the squash won't explode. Cook in a baking dish for about 40 minutes in a 375 degree oven

    Once cooked, carefully cut the squash in half as the steam coming out of it can burn. Let it sit a minute before scooping out the seeds. Then, with a fork shred the inside "meat" of the squash. The result will look like a cooked pasta, hence the name.

    A simple preparation as a side dish is to add a little butter/margarine and sprinkle with parmesan cheese and black pepper. You may also add spaghetti sauce.

    Treat this squash like pasta and get creative by adding diced tomatoes, olives, different cheeses like feta or fontinella, herbs, or even cooked keilbasa or ground sausage, etc. Don't be afraid to try something new! This is a tasty and healthy means to a meal.


    Take a moment to enjoy the moment!
    Scott & Chrissy
    814-948-7188
    sctab@yahoo.com

Posted 9/1/2010 8:05am by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

Enjoy your Labor Day weekend! Have fun with family and friends - cook out, drink a good wine, eat great veggies!

You'll be receiving the last of the sweet corn for this year. Boo hoo! Tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants are also coming to an end. We've done several pickings already. The heavy pickings are done, and we're on the backside of the light pickings now. Enjoy them while they last.

We've begun picking winter squash (acorn, carnival, butternut, spaghetti). These types of squash must be picked in advance before distribution so the skins have time to dry out and harden (unlike those of summer squash). This harder skin allows for a longer storage period through the fall and winter. You should start to see these squash in a week or two.

Also we're about 3 weeks away from our second arrival of broccoli. This is a treat as we've not done a late planting of this before. We're excited to have broccoli so late in the season!

What you can expect to find in your box this week:
corn
potatoes
parsley
red round tomatoes
Roma/plum tomatoes
onion
sweet peppers
green beans
eggplant


Culinary Corner
  • Always wash your produce!
  • If you like the rustic appearance of skins on your potatoes, now is the time to make smashed potatoes with the skins still on because the skins are still new and soft. A fun change to the alternative.
  • The amount of tomatoes you have in your box is a great quantity for adding to chili. Simply stew the tomatoes first by simmering them in boiling water for about 3-5 minutes. Peel off the skins and chop them into bite size pieces before adding to the cooked seasoned chili meat. You can also add cooked corn! AND in our family, we eat chili over smashed potatoes. A great combo.
  • These slicing tomatoes are also great for making an old fashioned tomato sandwich. Thinly slice the tomatoes and add 2-3 slices on bread. Add thinly sliced onions, if you choose, with a favorite slice of cheese. Add a favorite herb or condiment for extra flavor. Yum!
  • Try sauteeing the peppers and onions and adding them to your eggs for a splendid omelet breakfast this weekend!

...in the Kitchen

Country Green Beans (modified from recipe found in Taste of Home)
1 lb green beans, trimmed and snapped in halves or thirds
1/2 C diced onion
1/2 C diced boiled potatoes
1/2 C diced cooked ham, or 1/4 C chopped cooked bacon
3 T butter (or reserved grease from bacon)
1/2 C chicken broth
1 clove garlic, minced
salt & pepper to taste
parsley

Combine all ingredients in a skillet and cook for 20 minutes until beans are tender. Salt & pepper to your liking. Garnish with parsley. Serve warm.


We wish you a festive and safe holiday weekend!

Scott & Chrissy
sctfab@yahoo.com
814-948-7188
Posted 8/24/2010 3:55pm by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

What happened to the sun!? The cooler weather feels nice, but the dampness with it isn't good for our crops...especially the carrots. They are coming, we just don't know when. This weather affects them as do the deer that have found our carrot stash. Not good!

You'll be receiving another large dose of tomatoes this week. Enjoy them as they are coming to the end of their season. Our crops seem to have been about 1-2 weeks ahead of normal schedule - due to our good, hot summer. So instead of spreading out the amount of tomatoes over a longer span, they seem to have ripened in a shorter time frame. We appreciate you keeping up with us and our unpredictable veggies.

We have a number of yummy recipes this week, so be sure to read to the end!

We have a good number of members who are involved in education as some level - teachers, staff, students - and as they return for another year, we wish them all a safe and productive school year. Thank you for what you do.

What you can expect to find in your box this week...
corn
onion
beets (no tops)
green peppers
hot green/red peppers
golden tomatoes
red tomatoes (with a spash of orange and purple for color!)
cantelope OR eggplant

Culinary Corner
  • Always wash your produce!
  • The hot pepper in your box is indeed HOT! Beware. Scott was in the field on afternoon, and picked a few to test. Taking a bite of one was caught off guard and ran for the spring water. These particular peppers are an Italian gourmet pepper called Corno di Toro. Though most descriptions claim they are sweet Italian peppers, we find them not to be so.
  • This is a good week to create a delicious, home-made salsa with the amount of tomatoes, peppers, and onion you receive. Have fun!
  • If you're not a fan of beets but wan tthe nutritional value of them, try adding a beet puree to a chocolate cake recipe. The flavor is undetected while you still gain the "health" benefits. (To create a beet puree - simply boil them until very tender; peel their skins, and toss them into a food processor. Voila! This can be frozen for future use.)

...in the Kitchen
Tomato Salsa
1-1/2 C tomatoes, finely diced
1/2 C onion, diced
1/2 C green pepper, diced
1 T olive oil
2 t lime juice (add rind peelings for additional flavor)
1 t hot pepper with seeds (jalepeno, corno di toro, habenaro, etc.)
2 T cilantro
1/4 t salt
1/4 t black pepper

Mix all ingredients together. Salsa tastes best if you let the mixture sit at room temperature for an hour or so just after making it to let flavors meld. then yo umay refrigeratie it if necessary. Drain juices in a seive before serving.
NOTE - to speed up the process, but all veggies undiced with other ingredients into a food processor and pulse several times to preferred consistency.

Borscht (NY Deli Style)
3 C water (can also use vegetable or beef broth)
2-3 C beets, peeled and cut into strips
1 carrot, peeled and cut into strips
1 garlic clove
2 T lemon juice
1-1/2 t salt
1 t black pepper
sour cream
dill

Combine first four ingredients in a soup pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until beets are tender, about 10 minutes. Let cool. Tranfer to a food processor or blender and add lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Pulse to create a creamy texture. Serve warm or cold in bowls with a dollop of sour cream and a dash of dill.
NOTE - to make a heartier version, add bite-sized potatoes. You can add potatoes to soup pot and cook with the beets and carrots, then into the food processor for the puree OR you can add potatoes to the finished product for a chunkier version.

Spicy Pickled Summer Veggies (modified from version in Cottage Living, 2006)
2 C white vinegar (apple or red wine vinegars are also good to try for different flavors)
1/2 C sugar
1-1/2 T sea salt
2 t dill seed
1 t mustard seed
2 t crushed red pepper flakes
1 t ground black pepper
12 whole cloves
4 bay leaves
3-4 C veggies - use any of the following individually or combined:cucumber, zucchini, onion, peppers (hot or sweet), green beans, radishes, beets (will turn liquid purplish in color)

Combine all ingredients except veggies into a quart jar. Cover with lid, and shake until sugar dissolves. Add veggies to jar. Cover and shake again. Chill for at least 4 hours, best if overnight. Be sure to shake jar occasionally. Will keep in refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Enjoy the waning days of summer!
Scott & Chrissy
814-948-7188
sctfab@yahoo.com
Posted 8/18/2010 7:22am by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

What beautiful weather we are having lately - keep it coming!

We'd like to thank all of you for being mindful to return the green pint and quart size containers. We use these containers a lot and depend on having them, so thank you for your cooperation.

This week you'll be enjoying new potatoes! When you receive them, please be sure to keep them refrigerated. Because they are new, their skins haven't had a chance to set and they can bruise easily, so they should be kept cold.

I guess it's true what they say...careful what you wish for. Last year, we had no tomatoes. This year, we're reaping the benefits. We tried growing purple tomatoes this year and seem to have had luck. We really enjoy their flavor - probably better than any red one's. The Cherokee Purple (shaped like slicing tomatoes) are good with nice flavor. The Purple Russian (shaped like plum tomatoes) are tasty, but seem to be fragile...more so than the Cherokee Purple. We hope you're liking them, too.

Some people may feel they are getting an over abundance of them, especially since many people grow their own. We recently learned from a friend that they freeze theirs whole. Once frozen, the tomtoes are rock solid. When you wish to use them, simply thaw them under warm water and the skins peel right off. Once peeled, use the tomatoes like stewed ones for cooking. They aren't good for slicing at this point. Something to consider trying anyway.

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
sweet corn
new potatoes
swiss chard
cucumber
tomatoes
basil
cantaloupe

Culinary Corner
  • Always wash your produce!
  • The basil is beginning to go to seed. You'll see flower-like tips on the stalks. This flower-like tip is the indication the plant is going to seed, which means the plant is nearing its end for the season and will need to be pulled. The basil maintains its flavor even at this stage. So simply remove the flower-like tip and discard. Then remove the leaves from their stems and stalks. Proceed with using this herb as you wish. Remember, you can dry or freeze this item to preserve for later.
In the Kitchen...
Corn Chowder (modified from version in Joy of Cooking)

5 slices bacon, chopped
1 large onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
6 C corn (cooked fresh or frozen)
3 potatoes, peeled and diced
4 C milk
4 C chicken broth
1 t pepper
basil or dill

In large soup pot, cook bacon on medium heat until browned. Add onions and celery and cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Add corn, potatoes, milk, broth, and pepper. Cover and simmer for half an hour. Remove from heat, uncover, and cool slightly. In batches, spoon half of the soup into a food processor or blender and puree until creamy. Return pureed mixture to soup pot and stir. A true chowder has a creamy base with tiny pieces throughout for texture. Serve warm garnished with chopped basil or dill.

* This is an easy recipe, it feeds plenty, and it freezes very well. Enjoy!


Enjoy a fantastic weekend!
Scott & Chrissy
814-948-7188
sctfab@yahoo.com

Posted 8/11/2010 5:26am by Scott Farabaugh.

Greetings BGF CSA Members,

We made it to the half-way mark of the season! And we're still growing in members and produce!
We will have a short break from lettuce after this week. You'll receive head lettuce this week, but it may be three weeks or so before getting salad mix. We had done a third later planting of lettuce hence the gap of time - but I'm sure you'll appreciate the break!

We hope you're enjoying the corn - this year's crop has a better taste than last year's. Some say the cob seems tougher, which sometimes it can be. If it's too much trouble to eat on the cob simply slice the kernels off and smother it with butter!

This is a busy time of the summer for vacations. Many of you are good about giving us advanced notice (2 weeks), but some of you are not. Please be mindful that we keep close count of boxes and quantity of what goes in them. Also, when you request a week off due to vacation, you are due a double up box at a later date. So when emailing us to tell us about your vacation date, let us know your double up date as well. Thanks!


What you may expect to find in your box this week:
head lettuce
green peppers
hot peppers (...and they are hot!)
cherry or grape tomatoes
slicing tomatoes
cucumber
zucchini
sweet corn
eggplant
cantaloupe


Culinary Corner

  • always wash your produce! 
  • If you enjoy salsa, this is a good week to make it since you have tomatoes and peppers. You can even add corn for a fuller taste. Try this on top of a burger...YUM!
  • Another tomato option...saute tomatoes with onion and eggplant with olive oil and garlic. Serve over cooked pasta.
  • We gave you a recipe for Zucchini Quiche in the Week 6 Newsletter. What our sister-in-law tried was to not use meat, and add 2 cups of corn and a sliced green tomato. She added the corn (cooked and off the cob) to the batter mix. Then she poured half the batter into a baking dish, added the sliced tomatoes as a second layer, and poured the rest of the batter over top as a third layer. (This is a nice variation for our vegetarian members.)

...in the Kitchen

Garden Relish
3 ears of corn; husked, cooked, kernels off cob
2 tomatoes, diced
1 onion, diced
cucumber, peeled, seeded, diced
1 green pepper, seeded, diced
1/2 C balsamic vinegar
1-2 T sugar
1 T dill, parsley, basil, cilantro, or other favorite herb
salt & pepper to taste

Dissolve sugar in vinegar in a quick boil. Remove from heat and cool. Mix all other ingredients. When vinegar mixture is cool add to veggies and stir. Refrigerate. This recipe is best if made day before serving. Will keep in refrigerator up to 1 week.


Keep cool!

Scott & Chrissy Farabaugh

814-948-7188

sctfab@yahoo.com