Two weeks are left in our spring/ summer CSA. We hope all members have enjoyed the bounty of these first fifteen weeks. As for rain, we still have not received any, but we will keep hoping. At the farm this last week, we hoed the okra patch and put drip irrigation in to try and increase the okra yield. We also weeded in the fall celery patch, and cultivated it. In about two weeks we will begin our fall planting into the fields. We will be planting broccoli, kohlrabi, cabbage, brussel sprouts, collard greens, turnips, bac choi, napa cabbage, tat-soi, lettuce, spinach, carrots, radishes, rutabaga, and many others. Just a few things to be looking forward to once the weather cools down…
Due to the extreme heat in August, this month is generally our slowest harvest month of the year. I visited our apple orchard this weekend in Boone, and unfortunately late frost in the mountains killed most all of the blooms so it doesn't look like we are going to have any eating apples this year. This is another perfect example of the risk and rewards of farming. However, for fall fruits, we should have pears and grapes. This week, according to share size, members will receive: cantaloupe, celery, peppers, onions, garlic, watermelon, okra, eggplant, and cucumbers.
We would like to share with you an article that one of our own CSA members wrote about CSAs and local farming. Kelly Davis wrote "Community Supported Agriculture: Local farmers explain the beauty-and bounty-of the state's CSAs". Kelly is a long time CSA supporter who writes a food blog "Foodie Fresh". We thoroughly enjoy her blog and hope you will also.
Honey Lime Melon Salad
3 cups cubed honeydew
2 cups cubed watermelon
2 cups cubed cantaloupe
1/2 cup seedless red grapes
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 teaspoon grated lime peel
In a large serving bowl, combine the fruits. Whisk together dressing ingredients. Drizzle over fruit; toss to coat. Serve immediately.
Sweet and Sour Celery
1 bunch celery, cut into 1-inch slices
1 Tbsp sugar
¼ tsp salt
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp. red bell pepper, minced
1 c. water
In large skillet combine water, celery, sugar, salt, and cayenne pepper. Cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Simmer until celery is tender, approximately 5 minutes. Stir in vinegar and simmer until all liquid has evaporated. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with chopped red pepper. Serve over rice if desired.
Chicken Salad with Celery and Grapes
This is our favorite chicken salad recipe. We make it often, especially for friends in need. It is easy to prepare and can be adapted to whatever you would like to add to it, or leave out. Originally, it is from the Pioneer Woman cookbook.
1 whole rotisserie chicken (use white and/or dark meat)
2 stalks (to 3 Stalks) Celery, Chopped
3 whole Green Onions, Chopped
2 cups (to 3 Cups) Grapes, Halved
1/2 cup Mayonnaise
1/2 cup Plain Yogurt or Sour Cream
1/2 cup Half-and-half
Small handful of fresh dill, minced
1/2 cup Slivered Almonds, optional
1 Tablespoon (to 2 Tablespoons) Brown Sugar
Juice of one lemon
Kosher salt to taste
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
Remove Chicken meat from bones. Chop into bite sized pieces. Chop all of your fruits and veggies and place them in a bowl with the chicken. In another bowl mix mayonnaise, yogurt (or sour cream), lemon juice, brown sugar and salt and pepper to taste. Add fresh herbs (dill, oregano, and cilantro…whatever makes your skirt fly up) and if you're feeling a bit brazen throw in a dash of cayenne pepper. When the dressing tastes just right (you must taste test for appropriate saltiness especially), pour it over the chicken/veggie/fruit mixture and stir gently until everything is thoroughly mixed. If you are feeling naughty add a sprinkling of bacon bits. Allow the salad to chill for several hours (or even overnight). Serve on a bed of lettuce or in a sandwich or heck, eat it straight out of the bowl with a serving spoon.
Some tips on storing peppers fresh, frozen or other ways can be found here: http://anrcatalog.ucdavis.edu/pdf/8004.pdf . It is a great article by a Food Scientist at UC Davis. We frequently refer to it.
Eric Williamson 704.796.7795
Brad Hinckley 828.406.0849
Don't Panic, It's Organic!