2018 CSA Week 17

****This year the final week of CSA will be the week of September 23rd-29th. We will be combining weeks 20 and 21 into a ‘double box’, including both a week’s worth of fresh veggies and a collection of the storage crops: garlic, shallots, potatoes, and winter squash.****

Hello wonderful CSA families! Have you guys seen the 10-day weather forecast? We are so excited to see such beautiful weather for early September. Crisp mornings and shorter days sure feel like Autumn. You will see the shift in the seasons fully reflected in your first CSA box of September.

Nothing marks the beginning of fall to me like winter squash. After harvesting all the winter squash last week it’s gotten us really excited about fall cooking and eating. Next week you’ll get a spaghetti squash in your box, and the following weeks you’ll get a little parade of squash and get to taste test the difference in colors, textures, and flavors of winter squash.

We love the early greens and first quick green onions and radishes of spring, the delight of the first carrots and heading kohl crops of early summer, the bounty of peak season in July and August, but the waning of the season in September might just be my favorite time for bountiful seasonal eating. Or, maybe, whatever I happen to be eating is always my favorite thing!

Early autumn vegetables hold a special place in my heart. And we are so excited to include the colors and flavors of early autumn in this share and the next three shares to come.

Our garlic has been cleaned, sorted, and graded for the year, with 120 pounds of seed set aside for planting in October and 100 pounds set aside for CSA members for weeks 20/21. The onions are almost fully cured and will be cleaned and sorted for the remaining weeks as well. We have beautiful turnips, winter radishes, collard greens, curly kale (in the boxes this week), that were all planted at the absolute peak of the season in anticipation of cold weather to come in September; these crops not only can tolerate cold nights but actually sweeten up after a frost.

Speaking of sweetening up after a frost, it took us five years but we seem to have, FINALLY, grown some really nice brussels sprouts. We are hoping they get a frost on them before they need to be harvested, as ‘frosted’ brussels are amazing. Both the brussels and the fall leeks (also coming in September!) have been in the garden for over 100 days and we love seeing them standing in the fields ready to march into fall CSA boxes. We also have a beautiful crop of our final fall planting of carrots of the year. The last planting of carrots, seeded early July, are harvested at baby size after a frost and are always The Best Darn Carrots Of The Year.

Partial shares get all the same veggies in ½ - ¾ amounts.

Hot Poblano Peppers--Roast these by placing on a sheet pan under the broiler for a minute or two until the skins are blistered, then rotating so all sides get nice and charred. Place in a paper bag until cool, then peel, deseed, and add the chopped peppers to a pot of chili or batch of enchiladas for a little bit of heat.
Mini Napa Cabbage-This size Napa is our absolute favorite for using raw for adding to salads and using for wraps.
Hungarian Hot Wax Peppers--If you don’t like a lot of heat, you can temper these super-hot peppers by slicing them in half, removing the seeds and pith and soaking the deseeded pepper halves in a mixture of 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water for about an hour before using in a recipe. The pepper halves can be stuffed with herbed cream cheese and baked at 350 degrees for about 15-20 minutes until softened and bubbly.
Either Baby Kale or Super Greens
Red Onion and Sweet Onions
Carrots with Tops--The carrot tops on these are the same tender green as the spring variety. Use it instead of basil for a “carroty” pesto, or saute them.
Tomatoes, slicers and a few glaciers
Curly Kale--Add to a soup, saute, or stir-fry, or use anyway you would use collards or kale.
Red French Heirloom Potato-technically a ‘fingerling’ this heirloom variety is larger than most fingerlings. More the size of a red potato but with the texture and flavor of a fingerling potato. This is our very favorite potato variety!

To celebrate Labor Day this year, we read the dramatic chapter from Laura Ingalls Wilder's Farmer Boy where Almanzo helps to bring in the potatoes before the ground freezes, and then all went out as a family to harvest the last of our potatoes. And because they're always eating cake in this book, when we were done, we all went in and had a slice of cake!

We always give our fantastic crew Labor Day off, and feel a special affinity for this holiday. Cheers to all you workers out there who help make this farm possible!

Recipe of the Week: Zucchini and Potato Pancakes
(Adapted from tasteofhome.com)

3 cups shredded unpeeled zucchini (about 2 medium)
1 cup shredded potato
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt, plus more for grated veggies
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika--sweet or smoked
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 small onion, finely chopped
2-4 tablespoons olive/avocado/coconut oil

Grate the zucchini and potatoes and toss with 1-2 teaspoons of salt in a colander to draw out excess moisture. Let drain about 20 minutes.
Place grated veggies in a dish towel and squeeze out as much moisture as you can.
Place veggies in a bowl and mix with remaining ingredients (except oil).
Heat oil in a skillet. Drop fritter mixture by ¼ cupfuls into hot oil and fry 3-4 minutes per side, until browned and crispy.
Serve with applesauce and sour cream, if desired.