Fall is here in all it’s crisp glory. Nothing feels better than working through a clear sunny day without the humidity that has been with us most of the last couple months. The change in the weather this time of year comes along with a change in our schedule as school has started and we are back to busy. During the summer we really never slow down on the farm, but other than being ready for all of you to arrive on Tuesdays and Fridays we don’t have to watch the clock too closely. With the start of school all of that changes and shorter days and bookended between getting kids out the door and transitioning them into homework or soccer practice, not to mention dinner. Historically this is a time when many of you tell of “falling behind” with your CSA shares for the sole reason that everyone is in transition and time is tight. With that in mind we are harvesting very storable crops this week and no greens (other than lettuce). Carrots, Chinese cabbage, beets, peppers and acorn squash will all “hold” until you have time to get to them. Put the roots and the peppers in you chiller drawers and the acorn squash will be fine on the counter for a long time (call it a fall decoration).
We will finish squash harvest this week and it has been a bumper year with plants yielding more and larger fruits that average. In our limited sampling to date it seems that the same factors that gave us great tasting melons will also be delivering superb quality for winter squash. Our biggest problem for the weeks ahead looks to be finding containers to harvest into as the squash crop will use up crates needed for potatoes. We usually pick into 20 bushel apple crates that we move with the tractors. The crates come from area orchards that sell us their old crates on the cheap. The apple crop is big this year and no one will part with their extras.
Chinese or Napa cabbage is in the share this week and this tender relative of green cabbage is very versatile. Shredded or sliced thinly, it makes a great salad with a light vinaigrette or peanut sauce, especially with carrots. Try making a rice gratin with your acorn squash and some cheese and using the napa as a wrapper. The “cabbage” link on our recipe sidebar has lots of good ideas as well.
Ever make your own salad dressing? Mince half a shallot mixed with wine vinegar some mustard and oil and you are in business. Shallots can be used raw or cooked and are somewhere between the pungency of an onion and the sweetness of garlic. These little bulbs go with everything.
Apples, Pears and Comb Honey
With fall comes the work of the bees. Paula Red apples and Clapp’s Favorite pears from Willow Pond Farm are available this week along with comb honey from hives here on the farm. We hope to have jars of honey in a couple weeks as well. Nothing is better for you than local honey…
Whats in the Share…
What’s in Upic…