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CSA Recipes

Posted 5/10/2017 1:08pm by Amy Philson.

We have a special treat for you today.  I have been asking our farmers to compose a paragraph to include in our newsletter, and they just don't take (or have) the time.  So you get to hear what's going on from my perspective.

This week, David Yoder from NuWay Farm made time to do this.  Below is what he wrote:

It's an unseasonably warm day.  The sun is earnestly sending its warm rays down to earth.  Puffy white clouds float in the sky.  An occasional slight breeze ruffles the leaves on the bing cherry tree.
 
It is a Sunday afternoon and I sit on the porch of our farmhouse meditating and watching birds fly in and out of our fields.  No doubt they are looking for worms and bugs to feed their own growing families.
 
From where I sit I can see all six of our fields as they lay in a dip between the house and road.  Although the mega-farmer would call our fields "just little patches," we prefer to call them fields even if each is only one to one-and-a-half acres in size.
 
The field next to the road is planted to potatoes--a whole ton of seed.  The field next to that is sown to oats.  With the heat of today and rain of yesterday, I believe that oat seed will sprout soon.  Whenever the oats are about twelve inches tall, we plan to plow it under, then plant oats again.  We want to continue that schedule until September, when we put in fall crops.  It's all about soil building.
 
The third field is planted to vegetables for my and your growing family.  It contains a lot of green onions.  I just love to walk out and pull up an onion, wipe it on my pant leg, and crunch it down.  For some reason, my wife disapproves.  The field also has radishes, carrots, lettuce, arugula, and Swiss chard growing in it.
 
The fourth field we have in spring fallow, which means it is plowed and worked up but nothing will be planted until June.  Once a week, weather permitting, we run over it with the cultimulcher, killing any sprouting weed seeds.  Of course, we may lose some organic matter by exposing the bare soil to the sun for such a long time, but we have so much horse manure on our farm that organic matter is easily recovered.
 
The next field is all worked up ready and waiting for the right weather to receive the leek crop.  We have 2,880 leeks to set out soon.
 
Field number six is on the other side of the driveway behind the high tunnels.  From where I sit on the porch I can see about half of it.  This field will be our tomato field this summer.  A thousand paste tomatoes, a thousand cherry tomatoes, and two thousand of our famous heirloom tomatoes that we keep seed from every year.  I will tell you more of this excellent old tomato later.
 
Now the evening shadows are lengthening.  It's almost time to chore.  I'm still sitting on my porch thinking of how fortunate I am.  During the day I do the work I love to do.  At night, I'm surrounded by family and friends.  I am a farmer.
 
--David M. Yoder, NuWay Farm

I hope to continue with more of these updates from our member farms in the future.

Here is what is in your CSA Shares this week:

  • 1/2 lb. popcorn from Chester Detweiler Farm
  • 1 lb. rhubarb from Sunny Meadow Farm
  • 1 bunch green garlic from Bushel and a Peck Farm
  • 1 bunch green onions from NuWay Farm
  • 1/3 lb. ramps from NuWay Farm
  • 1/2 lb. arugula from NuWay Farm
  • 1/4 lb. horseradish root from Bushel and a Peck Farm
  • 1/3 lb. watercress from NuWay Farm
  • 2 heads lettuce from Harmony Grove Farm

A note about fresh horseradish:  Making your own horseradish sauce to keep in your fridge is quick and easy.  I hope yours doesn't languish in your crisper drawer until it is no longer useful.  Here is a quote from one of the recipes below that speaks volumes about our modern culture:

"Betty and I were talking about how very few people make homemade horseradish sauce anymore, even when they have access to a horseradish patch. The big batch we did took a couple hours (with digging and cleaning), but we ended up with four quarts of sauce. (I'm gifting out horseradish to local friends and family this fall.) If you were making only a cup, it wouldn't take much time at all.

I think that perhaps our modern palates are spoiled by the abundance of food choices available in the average grocery store, and how much fresh produce is available all year round. In the olden days, folks were more appreciative of the zip of horseradish when they had to rely on storage food all winter. The same might be said of heavy spiced cakes and cookies. I find when baking that spice cakes and cookies are much more appreciated by the older crowd, while young palates more commonly go for chocolate or vanilla."

Use the green garlic just as you would regular garlic.  Slice or chop it and sauté in your favorite recipes.  Most people discard the tough green leaves and only use the tender white/light green portions.

Recipes

Cashew Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Easy Horseradish Sauce

Horseradish Vinaigrette

How to Prepare Horseradish

Wilted Arugula

Bean Salad with Crips Celery, Watercress, and Red Onion

Watercress, Leek and Coconut Milk Soup (sub ramps or green garlic for the leeks)

Easy Spring Garlic and Oregano Meatballs

Rhubarb Mousse

Soy-Lemon Flank Steak with Arugula (I would serve it on a bed of arugula rather than just sprinkling some on top.)

Spiced Braised Rhubarb Serve it on ice cream or yogurt...or eat it plain!

Savory Ramp and Cheddar Muffins

An update on the email that I sent last week to our entire mailing list:  We have had a great response to it.  A number of people signed up for shares who had been procrastinating.  I have received many emails with encouraging words, ideas, offers of help, and also constructive criticism why some have not signed up again.  We welcome input from you all, both positive and negative.  While NWPA Growers exists to market and deliver our farmers' products, we want to serve you in the best way that we can.  And we are encouraged when former members tell us why our program didn't work for their family but they are still seeking out local foods from other area farms.  We all have the same goal:  healthy food from a healthy local economy.

Enjoy this beautiful day!  I would love to get away from my desk and work in my gardens, but I'm afraid that my day is filled with paperwork and computer work, and then a meeting tonight.  My husband is spreading manure with his team of draft horses right now.  Maybe tomorrow I can get outside...

Amy