October means lots of digging on the farm as we work to bring in the sweet potato and potato harvest! Sweet potatoes are particularly important to get out of the ground soon because they need time to cure in warmer temperatures before they are sweet enough for eating! We should have the first batch in the farm stand and CSA next week. This week we will enjoy one of our favorite potato varieties, Peter Wilcox, which have a purple skin and a white interior. Our white skin, white flesh storage varieties are yet to come later in the season. We harvest all our potato varieties by hand, loosening the soil with a pitch fork and then digging down with our hands or trowels (careful not to damage any) to fill our buckets. There are tractor driven potato digging machines that can speed things up under the right conditions so we hope to own one some day, but for now it’s a slow but rewarding process!
It is week 17 of 20 for the Main Season CSA so there will be 3 more weeks of pick-ups after this one. Flex CSA members, you will get an update when you check in this week about how may pick-ups are left for your membership this season. Extended CSA members can continue to come for pick-ups once per week until November 23rd. Finally, sign-ups for the 2020 season will become available next week!
This week in the CSA:
Pie Pumpkins - While these are fun for decoration they are also tasty in pumpkin bread, muffins or pie! We have a limited number this year due to loss after harvest. If you’d like to save your pumpkin for Thanksgiving then we suggest cooking your pumpkin now and freezing the puree.
Romanesco Cauliflower - With a fun green pyramid shape and a nutty flavor these cauliflower are a great addition to roasted veggies and curry recipes. Like our broccoli, they do have cabbage worms on them so soaking before cooking is suggested.
Peter Wilcox Potatoes- These potatoes have a purple skin and white flesh.
Mustard Greens - We grow a purple variety called “scarlet frills.” It is spicy in salads but becomes more mild when lightly cooked.
Buttercup, Delicata and Red Kuri Squash
Shallots - Store in a cool dark and dry place (not the refrigerator).
Baby bok choi
*Please note that at this time of year, killing frosts can happen at any time, which means that some of the PYO may not be available afterwards. This week it looks like a slight possibility of frost Friday night.
Choice of tomatillos, husk cherries or cherry tomatoes. Tomatillos are still fairly easy picking. Husk cherries are plentiful if you walk at least halfway down the bed. It’s nearing the end for cherry tomatoes, but if you’re willing to hunt there are still some decent ones to be found, especially in the Sunrise Bumblebee, cherry bomb, grape, jasper, and black cherry.
Hot peppers - Jalapeños (green), fresno (red) and ancho poblanos (green, about 4” long), serrano.
Herbs: parsley, dill, cilantro, Thai basil, chives, peppermint, spearmint, thyme, oregano, tarragon and sage.
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.
The PYO flowers are still blooming and 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 tomatoes, peppers, salanova, spaghetti squash, lemongrass and onions. We will also have sweet corn and jack-o-lantern pumpkins from Verrill Farm, eggs from Pete and Jen’s Backyard Birds, mushrooms from Fat Moon Farm and organic raspberries from Silferleaf Farm whenever available.
Fresh pumpkin Bread
by Stacia Hayes on food.com
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup cooked pumpkin, mashed
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup oil
1/4 cup water
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
Preheat oven to 350°F Spray standard size loaf pan with cooking spray. Combine sugars, pumpkin, oil, vanilla extract, water, and eggs. Sift together dry ingredients. Slowly add to pumpkin mixture and mix well. Pour into prepared baking dish. Bake at 350°F for 1 hour 15 minutes. MUFFINS: Recipe makes 18 muffins. Reduce baking time to 35 minutes. Freezable for a quick, healthy alternative for dessert.
Orecchiette With Mustard Greens and Sausage
by Anna Painter from Real Simple
1 pound sweet Italian sausage
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 bunches mustard greens, stemmed and coarsely chopped
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 pound cooked orecchiette
Toasted bread crumbs and grated Parmesan, for serving
How to Make It
Step 1 Cook the sausage in olive oil in a large skillet over medium until browned. Add garlic, mustard greens, salt, black pepper, and crushed red pepper. Cook until the greens are wilted, about 2 minutes.
Step 2 Add orecchiette and toss to combine. Serve topped with bread crumbs and Parmesan.