Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Garlic Party This Weekend!

Hi everyone!  Hope everyone has been successful at staying cool in this persistent summer heat as of late.  Nearly everyday, it's been 90 degrees!  And the hot nights don't help.  We at Echollective have been tending to take afternoon dips at a nearby waterhole during the hottest hours of the day.  Times have been sweaty and sticky, but we've been hanging in there.  Really early mornings and late evenings, even nighttime, have been our most comfortable work hours and we may all slip into siesta shifts.  It's just too hot in the middle of the day to get anything done!

The garlic pull rages on!  We appreciate everyone who has come out to help thus far.  Just today we have sold our first round of beautiful, pearly-white garlic cloves to the Co-op and the Motley Cow for their dinners.  Really good-looking stuff so far.  No problems with the dryness here!  And yes, this means you'll be seeing your first CSA garlic cloves.  Garlic will be in CSA this week!

Yup, the garlic party is still scheduled for this weekend!  Bring your tent, pants and gloves if need be, some food, maybe beer!  It'll be good times!  Garlic work will be scheduled for the evening, when it is less hot, and you may camp out here on the property.  The property is gorgeous and the firefly show is spectacular.  Everyone is invited, come out and join us for a farm day and night under the stars!

What else is new?  Rescued our bean bushes from a patch of nasty weeds, they are well on their way towards fruiting!  More eggplants have been transplanted into our greenhouses, and we have beds yet to prep for more pepper plants.  Our heirloom slicer tomatoes have just put out their first green fruits, we hope they set beautifully.  Last week we pulled up our first sizable Napa cabbage heads, a little surprise you all received last week at CSA.  Our kale plants have really flourished, producing enormous leaves!  This starts our kale bunching season, there will be plenty of bunches for quite a while now.  Our first broccoli crowns have formed and we have begun harvesting our largest ones!  Many of them look very nice, some of them a bit tinged with yellow due to the dryness.  A good crop so far.  Zucchinis, yellow squash, basil and sungold tomatoes are the crops really raking in the goods for us lately.  Cucumber sprouts are getting bigger!

This is our last call to those who might want a farm kitten!  All three available ones are being picked up July 10th by a very interested prospective owner.  After that, you've got a couple months to wait for our other litter to grow up!  However, it is on a first-come-first-serve basis, if you would like one come and get one before July 10th or they'll all be gone.  Please email us if interested.  These kitties really need homes, the sooner the better!

A big thank you to those who follow us in our Newsletter.  If you are just a passerby or casual reader, please feel free to sign up for this CSA Newsletter, especially if you are involved in our CSA!  We find that it has been very helpful to those who participate.

Hope to see you at market!

This week's CSA:
  • Kale bunch
  • Sungold cherry tomatoes
  • Napa cabbage
  • Zucchini
  • Yellow Zephyr summer squash
  • Garlic
  • Garlic Scapes
  • Basil
  • Pea Tendrils


Garlic Scape Recipes

This week we are dedicating our recipes to the eccentric, exotic, yet delicious garlic scape, thanks to one of our CSA members, Elizabeth Hinds, who took it upon herself to experiment with this unusual vegetable.  Not just anyone can say they know what to do with garlic scapes, but as Elizabeth put it, after messing around with it you wonder "what CAN'T I do with garlic scapes?"  These recipes are of her invention.  Thanks Elizabeth!


Beef Stirfry (with garlic scapes)
  •      ½ cup garlic scapes, roughly chopped
  •     1 med onion, halved and cut into 5mm slices
  •     1 lb stew beef, marinated in red wine vinegar* for at least 30 mins
  •     ⅔ cup peas (fresh or frozen)
  •     ⅔ cup broccoli (fresh or frozen)
  •     ¼ cup shoyu (can use soy sauce)
  •     ¼ cup hoisin (also called Peking sauce)
  •     1 tbsp raw sugar   
  •     3 tbsp butter

Melt the butter in a large wok and cook the onions over med-high heat until translucent, but still somewhat firm, about 5 minutes. Remove the onions, leaving as much butter in the wok as possible. Increase the temperature to high, add the meat (drain off most of the marinade first) and cook until just browned, about 2 minutes on each side. Remove the meat, leaving the juice, and add back the onions and other vegetables to cook for about 5 mins (if using frozen veg, add a few minutes for thaw time). Add back the meat and toss in the shoyu, hoisin sauce and sugar. Cook for 1 min, then serve over rice. Serves 3-4.
    *note: I usually make my own red wine vinegar from leftover wine. In a large mason jar, add red wine and spike with 1 tbsp  unpasteurized apple cider vinegar (Bragg’s works well). Cover with cheesecloth and screw on the band. Let sit on the counter for a couple of days before using and add red wine as available. 


Garlic scape pesto
  •     ½ cup garlic scapes, roughly chopped
  •     ½ cup snow peas, roughly chopped
  •     1 oz raw cashews
  •     1 cup olive oil
  •     ⅓ cup grated parmesan
  •     1 tbsp lemon juice

Pulse together the scapes, peas and cashews until they are chopped into small pieces. Add the olive oil, parmesan, lemon juice and a pinch of salt. Blend for about a minute, scraping down the sides as needed. Makes 2 cups.


Infused Olive oil
  • 2 garlic scapes, cut to fit container and sliced in half lengthwise 
  • Sprig of rosemary
  • 2 cups extra virgin olive oil

Wash the rosemary and garlic scapes and let dry completely before beginning (any water in the oil will encourage mold growth). Drop the scapes and rosemary into a clean, dry, sealable glass container (~16oz) and cover with the olive oil. Store in a cool, dry spot out of direct sunlight. Oil will be ready to use after about 2 weeks.


Spring vegetable soup
   
  •     2 turnips, sliced into 4mm thick disks
  •     2 radishes, sliced into 4mm thick disks
  •     bunch of spinach, stems removed
  •     ¾ cup barley
  •     3 qts garlic scape vegetable broth

Cook the barley in the vegetable broth until tender, about an hour. Spread the turnips and radishes in a single layer on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Add all of the vegetables to the broth and barley and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Add salt to taste. Serves 4-5.


Garlic Scape and Turnip Green Risotto
  •     ½ cup garlic scapes cut into 1cm rounds
  •     1 cup arborio rice
  •     ½ cup dry white wine
  •     4 cups vegetable broth
  •     2 tbsp olive oil
  •     ¼ cup chopped fresh sage
  •     greens from 2 turnips, chopped medium
  •     ½ cup freshly grated parmesan

Bring the vegetable broth to a simmer in a separate pot. In a medium saucepan, saute the garlic scapes in olive oil until lightly browned. Add the sage, turnip greens and rice, tossing to coat. Cook for about 2 mins before adding the wine. After the wine is completely absorbed, begin to ladle in the hot broth, about ½ cup at a time, and stir until absorbed. Repeat this until all of the broth has been added, then stir in the parmesan just before serving. Serves 4.

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Please tell us if you can't identify something on the market table, don't know what to do with a particular item, have a food allergy we should know about, or if you have other questions or comments. We love to hear from you!


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