Summertime Neighbor Sharing

9:28 PM Jessica Kruse 0 Comments

This past week has been busy with garlic picking and curing, along with the many other farm operations that support our presence at farmers markets, New Pioneer, HyVee and you can find our produce on the menu at several great local restaurants including Motley Cow, Trumpet Blossom, Salt Fork Kitchen, Cobble Hill, Palisades Cafe and Kirkwood Hotel's Class Act.  They are all doing really amazing things with fresh Echollective veggies right now.

The sunflowers are in full bloom with many buds yet to open and the bees from our hives are busy going in for some honey love. We have had some of our CSA work-traders out in the garlic fields! It is so nice to work alongside CSA members and get to you know you better.

Our neighbors at Green Share Organic CSA are beginning to trade with us some of their bounty as we have a lot of onions to share with them.  Feel free to check them out!

This week is the big downtown Cedar Rapids market and, as usual, you will find us there on 3rd street near the main stage, across from Zins.  As a reminder, Cedar Rapids CSA members will be picking up there. 

CSA boxes this week offer:

Garlic Scapes (good with practically every dish!)
Turnips (great roasted with potatoes or added to a potato mash)
Parsley (perfect for cold dishes like tabbouleh)
Kohl Rabi (thin round slices make great raw chips to dip in salsa and/or guacamole!)
Collards (great cooked or used as a raw wrap)
Broccoli (another great cold salad addition on hot days)
Red onions (small but mighty)
Candy onions (shiny and sweet)
Red potatoes (getting a lot of compliments on these)
Basil (caprese salad favorite when fresh)
Zuccini and summer squash (add turmeric to this steamed for a seasonal anti-inflammatory dish)
Leeks! (potato and leek soup with our garlic... heaven)
Rosemary (lovely added to said soup or with a potato/turnip roast)
Thyme (compliments rosemary very well and pairs great with fish)
Garlic (what much of the fuss is about. powerhouse herb)

We love to hear about how you are preparing your box goodies so please pass along to us anything you would like to share!  On facebook or via email.

Here is a lovely potato and leek soup recipe, which you can add red potatoes to for a slight variation using yours from your box! 

Compliments of: 

3 tablespoons butter
3 leeks, thinly sliced*
1 medium or large onion, chopped
6 – 8 russet potatoes, thinly sliced**
3 1/2 cups chicken broth (or enough to barely cover potatoes)
1 cup heavy cream
salt to taste
fresh ground black pepper to taste

1) Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat then add onions and leeks. Cook, stirring, until onions are limp and just slightly brown.

2) Add sliced potatoes to saucepan then pour in enough chicken broth to just barely cover the potatoes. Continue cooking over medium heat until potatoes are tender. Using a potato masher, mash and stir potatoes until desired consistency is reached. As you mash the potatoes and the soup thickens, turn down heat and stir frequently with a large spoon to prevent scorching on the bottom.

3) Add one cup of heavy cream (or more if you desire) and salt and black pepper to taste. Cook 15 minutes more over low heat, stirring frequently, then remove from heat and serve.

Notes: *Make sure to clean leeks thoroughly and slice only the white and light green part of the leeks. **You don’t need to peel the potatoes as the peels add to the rustic texture of the soup. But make sure to scrub them thoroughly and remove any obvious blemishes before slicing. Although we always make it with chicken broth, this can easily become a vegetarian soup by simply using vegetable broth instead.

< More tutorial is available on the website >

As always we are happy and honored to be your farmers!

Wishing you a joyful mid-summer,
Your Echo Team

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