Squash and Napa

What’s in Upic?……

Flowers      Herbs         Cherry Tomatoes

Transition is in full bloom around here these days as the leaves are lightening, the nights are chilly, and we have both Napa Cabbage and Winter Squash in the share this week. We will be giving out the last round of tomatoes and peppers this week. It is always sad time, but the cycle of things coming and going seems to make everything taste better over the course of the year.

Napa cabbage is a great vegetable. We sometimes call it “cabbage light” as its flavor is more subtle and its texture much lighter than European cabbage. If you are unsure of what to do with this crop, start by treating it as you would standard cabbage. We often shred it into the last moments of a stir fry, just letting it wilt a bit. If you like to make stuffed cabbage the tender leaves lend themselves to the rolling process and make eating easy as well.

We start winter squash this week thanks to about twenty of you who came out to help us harvest this past Saturday. What a great crew! We had just enough kids to help their parents pass the squash into our 20 bushel bulk bins. By our estimate we gathered about 6000 lbs in about an hour and a half. The first variety we will see this week is sweet dumpling. This white and green squash is great roasted. Cleave it in half, scrape out the seeds, brush the cut side with oil or butter and cook skin up on a cookie sheet at 400 dgrees for 35-40 minutes. For those with a sweet tooth or reluctant children at the dinner table, turn the cooked squash so the cut side is up, brush amply with butter and shake/drizzle brown sugar, maple syrup or honey and set under the broiler until golden brown.

CSA sign-up for 2011 begins next week. We will be taking deposits starting next week for the 2011 season. A deposit of $100 will not only secure your share for next year but will get you on our winter payment plan. Having all of you sign up early is a great help to us by reducing the administrative duties next spring, when we are busy in the fields.

What to expect in your share this week…

Lettuce                 Potatoes

Cabbage               Arugula

Kale                     Chard

Peppers                Tomatoes

Asian Greens       Chickories

Beets                    Winter Squash

Sheep breeding has begun this week. We turned two rams out with the girls this past week and they seem to be going well. To monitor the process we make a paste by mixing pigment and vegetable oil together which is slathered all over the rams’ chest. As the ram mounts the ewes he leaves behind a mark on their hind quarter. We change the color each week and can then find out who has been bred when and how efficient the ram is doing his job. As you pass by the farm, look for brightly colored marks on the hind quarters of the ewes.

Fresh, the Movie. Fresh, a hopeful new film about our food system and, where it’s going and how to make it better for all humans. Showing at Bowdoin College Searles Hall, room 315 this Wednesday, September 22nd at 7pm. Here’s a link to the bowdoin calendar http://www.bowdoin.edu/calendar/event.jsp?bid=480229&rid=55410

More apples from our friends at Willow Pond Farm in Sabattus. Low spray macs, cortlands and pears along with the world’s best cider will be for sale at pick-up. Really, can cider taste this good or am I dreaming?

Bags. Please bring clean dry bags for your produce to pick-up…If you have extras bring them along to share.