Despite some clouds and rain, last Saturday turned out to be a great day both on the farm and at the Concord Ag Day Farmers’ Market! The farmers’ market was a great chance to connect with other farmers in town as well as visit with new and returning customers. The farm was also bustling as everyone enjoyed the combination of late summer and early fall crops now in season in the CSA and farm store, including sunflowers!
The crew kept everything going smoothly in the CSA and Farm Store while Melissa was at the market and Lise was shuttling items back and forth between the farm and market. Molly and Rebecca checked folks in and rang up purchases, coordinated the part time field crew, and made decisions about stocking and harvest needs while forever being their cheery, kind selves to both customers and co-workers. Meanwhile, Ari washed the seemingly endless stream of bins on Saturday morning with both attention to detail and an upbeat attitude. Brian oversaw high tunnel irrigation as well as kept up with harvesting and other field work, and Abby who recently joined us for the fall season jumped right into helping wherever needed! Another new crew member, Matt brought his skills and energy to packing for and assisting at the market. Friends of the farm, Jane and Kathy (Lise’s mom), saved the day as usual, splitting their time between the farmers’ market booth and farm store to make sure we were able to keep up and that everyone got a lunch break!
This week while we will continue our usual daily harvests, we will also try to find time to finishing weeding a few crops for later this fall such as the later lettuce and spinach, harvest the popcorn crop and hang it in the greenhouse to dry, and work to clean up and bag the shallots and onions that have finished curing. Whenever possible we will clear fields of irrigation supplies and mulch to make way for cover crop.
This week in the CSA:
Red Kuri Squash - The skin is edible on this orange squash making chopping for cooking easier! The sweet, nutty flavor of red kuri squash makes it a favorite for adding to curry, as well as simply slicing and baking.
Kale - Toscano and a new variety, Dazzling Blue, which is like toscano but with a purple stem. We thought it looked fun and tasty, let us know what you think!
Salanova Lettuce Mix
Garlic- The garlic has been cured so it can be kept outside the fridge in a cool dark place.
Peppers: Green, Sweet Italian, and bell colored peppers
Tomatoes - We are nearing the end of tomato season but our red slicing tomatoes are still producing some.
Baby bok choi
Mizuna or yukina savoy - Both mild brassica greens, great in salads, sandwiches, or very lightly cooked.
Sunflowers - a new bed is blooming this week and another should be ready by the end of the week!
Green beans - a new (and final) planting is ready near the sunflowers
Tomatillos - Tomatillos should be picked when the fruit has filled out so much that the husk has split, they can be green or purple.
Husk cherries - Husk cherries should be picked when the husk is brown and papery. To eat, remove the husk - the berry inside will be yellow. Husk cherries usually fall on the ground when they ripen, hence why they are sometimes called “ground cherries”!
Hot peppers - Jalapeños (green), fresno (red) and ancho poblanos (green, about 4” long).
Herbs: parsley, dill, cilantro, Italian basil, Thai basil, chives, peppermint, spearmint, thyme, oregano, tarragon and sage. For Italian basil, please pinch the tops only.
Tuesday and Thursday 11am-6pm
*We will continue to close the pick-your-own gates at 6pm as a precaution due to the current EEE outbreak in Massachusetts. If you cannot finish picking by 6pm on Tuesday/Thursday you are welcome to pick on Wednesday or Friday.
We’ll have bachelor’s buttons, calendula, orlaya, gomphrena, cosmos, strawflower, statice, star flower, verbena, rudbeckia, scabiosa, celosia, decorative basil, sunflowers, zinnias, and more. Picking is open to PYO Flower CSA members as well as to the public for purchase by the bouquet (we provide the a jar for measuring your bouquet size and you fill it with the flowers you’d like to take home!). The PYO flowers will be open until the flowers are damaged by a frost. Flower picking is open any time the farm stand is open, Tuesday-Friday 11am-6pm and Saturday 9am-3pm. We will continue to close picking promptly at 6pm this week as a precaution due to the current EEE outbreak in Massachusetts.
This week in the farm stand:
We will have all of the veggies listed in the CSA available in the farm store as well as leeks, potatoes, spaghetti squash, lemongrass, and broccoli. We will also have sweet corn from Verrill Farm, eggs from Pete and Jen’s Backyard Birds, mushrooms from Fat Moon Farm and organic raspberries from Silferleaf Farm whenever available.
Red Kuri Squash Soup
By Alice Waters in Food & Wine February 2012
1 1/2 pounds red kuri or butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes (3 cups)
1/2 medium onion, coarsely chopped
1 bay leaf
1 medium fennel bulb, cored and cut into thin wedges
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Chopped toasted pecans and small marjoram leaves, for garnish
How to Make It
Step 1 Preheat the oven to 375°. In a large saucepan, combine the cubed squash with the chopped onion, bay leaf and 3 cups of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Cover and simmer over low heat until the squash is tender, about 20 minutes.
Step 2 Meanwhile, on a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the fennel wedges with the 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and toss well. Roast for about 25 minutes, until the fennel is tender and starting to brown.
Step 3 Discard the bay leaf from the soup. Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender. Return the soup to the saucepan and warm over low heat. Stir in the butter and season the soup with salt and pepper. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with the roasted fennel, pecans, marjoram leaves and a drizzle of olive oil.
The soup can be refrigerated overnight. Reheat gently.