1 cabbage (green, red savoy or napa will work)
1/3-1/2 cup olive or sesame oil
salt (corse kosher works best)
Pre heat oven to 425. Drizzle 1/2 the oil on a cookie sheet. Halve and then core the cabbage. Take each half and carefully slice it into 1/4″-1/2″ rounds being careful to keep the layers together. After each slice, transfer the layers intact to the oiled cookie sheet. Continue until the sheet is full. Fill all the spaces so the whole sheet is covered. Drizzle the remainder of the oil evenly on cabbage slices and finish with ample salt and pepper. Place the whole pan in the oven and set the timer to 10 minutes. Check for the beginning of browning at the edges and where the cabbage meets the pan. If you don’t see some browning keep cooking in one minute increments until you see browning. Napa will cook faster. You may want to brown the cabbage more (my kids fight over the crispy pieces). Once you see browning take the sheet out of the oven and with a spatula carefully flip the slices, again trying to keep them together. This is hard as they are limp now. Return them to the oven for another 5-10 minutes (how crispy or not is up to you). This dish is great hot but we also keep some around in a container and add it to soups, salads or just as a quick cold or room temp side dish.
Promised rain is like expected MPG ratings or return on investment projections, it’s hard to count on them until the rubber meets the road or the check arrives. We have been looking to the skies via satellite and reading wonky NOAA forecasts for the past month and at this point are wondering if we need to sacrifice a chicken or convene some kind of drum circle to get some real precipitation. The past few events of clouds and showers have given the crew a break from the sun but not done much more for the soil than make the dust wet. Last night’s rains gave us .006 inches. This is not enough to get to the roots of anything we grow but it did go a long way towards rinsing the dust off everything, making for cleaner produce in today’s harvest. If anyone has strings to pull or a hotline to some greater power, throw your weight be hind some rain.
What’s in the share…
Cabbage mix and match
What’s in Upic…
This is the official opening week of our Upic field with strawberries as well as a few flowers. We are asking that you limit your berry picking to 1 pint this week to ensure that everyone can enjoy this crop. This does not include the berries you will eat along the way to sustain your picking! We will have pint boxes in the field. If you are new to the CSA and the upic field here’s how it works…
We prepare, plant, and weed this one acre plot just for you, the members of the farm. Growing there this season you will find peas, green beans, herbs, flowers, and most notably this week, strawberries. These are crops that are particularly rewarding to harvest and can add a lot of value to your share as they often are great accompaniments to the “field crops” we harvest and wash for you each week.
The important thing to understand about this field is that it belongs to everyone who has a share in the farm. There are 275 shares this year and we try very hard to plan each planting so that everyone will be able to enjoy every crop. The idea is that all of these crops are compliments to the field crops and not necessarily staples in and of themselves. While we would love to be able to plant enough Upic basil for everyone to make pesto for the winter or sow enough beans to share with your neighbors, it’s just not possible in the space we have to work with. Those of you that split shares, we ask that you be aware of your picking quantities.
With the exception of these first couple weeks we will not suggest amounts for you to take from the upic field. The idea is that we all take our share and consciously leave behind enough for everyone else. The upic field has always been our grand experiment in community spirit and we have never been disappointed.
What’s in the share…
What’s in Upic…
Strawberries ( 1 pint)
Another cool week for growing food here. While everything is growing it would be great to get some warmer days, or even better warmer nights. Nights in the 40’s go along way to slowing down the growth of of of the crops we have here. Soils cool and nutrients become less available to roots and the whole process of growing does’t start full steam again until the temps get above 55-60. The cold days are tough on the crew as well as we bundle up each morning, braced against the wind. These layers fill the farm trucks during the midday hours and as the day comes to a close we put them back on again, a process that we usually know well in April and October, not so much in June.
We have a really outstanding looking tomato crop this year thanks largely to Kristin and Corinne, our field and crew managers, who took on changing our system for planting and trellising this crop. Strong, stout plants and pumping out fruit and flowers ahead of years past and with a vigor we have not seen in a long time.
Better than a Radish
Mentioning the crop turnips is not something that makes most people get excited. We all think of the corse storage root and maybe register it’s place in history, keeping northern europe alive during many centuries of dark winters, but generally turnips don’t excite anyone. This week we will try to change that with the out of this world salad turnip. This is a turnip but it is sweet, creamy and nothing short go incredible. Used them interchangeably as you would a radish. On our weekly field walk yesterday I was bowled over by the flavor, sweetness and creaminess. Give these a try sliced raw on a salad, splash them with a light vinegar (rice or apple cider) or just hoard them and eat them all before your family finds them.
our garlic is growing well and our teaser offering for the real thing is the scape. This is the garlic flower and is quite tasty and an easy way to add some sweet garlic flavor to a salad or dish. Our usually get used a couple ways, tossed in the blender when we are making salad dressing or brushed with olive oil and tossed on the grill until they are soft and slightly charred.
Lots of great stuff on the way in the next couple weeks. Look for strawberries, zucchini, cabbage, scallions and beets soon.
Our Upic field will be opening soon and members are welcome come pick on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Sundays all day. Keep an eye out for the official opening in the newsletter or in a special email notice if the strawberries come in before the beginning of the week!
Thanks to all who signed up for our add-on shares. We are looking forward to having al of this great food paired up with our produce this year. If you still are interested in adding one of these shares let us know via email and we can add you in the coming weeks. Many folks have suggested that we offer a wine and toilet paper share too and then they would never have to go to the grocery store!
What’s in the share…
What a difference a day makes. We had 2.65 inches of rain at the farm Sunday evening and both plants and farmers could be heard breathing out a long sigh of relief. The past month has been so unusually dry and until recently quite cold, that our crops in the field have been a bit stressed and not growing on schedule. That said we have a stellar lineup of produce for your first share. For the first time we are offering storage carrots in our starting share. We harvested this crop last fall for Wild Oats Cafe in Brunswick, who we supply with carrots year round (morning glory muffins are my favorite). It was a bumper crop and we had more than they could use this winter and spring so we are sharing them with all of you. They are remarkably sweet and are just a teaser for the fresh crop that we hope to start harvesting in July.
Welcome (Back) to the Farm
Pick-ups begin this week on Tuesday or Friday between 2-7:00 p.m. As always we will be in the CSA barn to check you in, keep the produce fresh and chit chat about food and farming.
What’s in the Share?
Baby Bok Choi
In the next couple weeks look for zucchini, scallions, garlic scapes and everyone’s favorite…strawberries. This is the first time since 2007 that we have had strawberries in the upic field. After almost 10 years we are hoping that the Strawberry root maggot has moved on and we are again safe to have to pick this crop when you come to the farm. Keep an eye out in the newsletter for more info on what’s to come both in the share and in Upic.
Need Some Cooking Creativity…
Look to the right sidebar on our website for a recipe listing by ingredient. Here you will find a few recipes to get you acquainted with the produce in your share and kickstart your creative cooking process. Look for a sauce to go with this week’s baby bok choi, irresistible kale chips, chard quesadillas and more. Send us your favorite ways to enjoy our produce and we will add them to the archive.
We will have great produce for you next week. The greens look astounding and everything is healthy and happy. Its amazing what a few days of warmth will do. The full crew is cranking along here working towards our first harvest.
Farm Camp at Crystal Spring
There are still spaces available in Farm Camp. We have 3 sessions running in June and July for ages 5-10. Feed thew pigs, harvest carrots and everything in between! More info can be found here.
Still Time to Add Local Products To Your Vegetable Share….
Organic eggs, Artisan Bread, Maine mushrooms, farm yogurt and Maine cheeses can all be added to your weekly vegetables. These are outstanding local products that are not available in the grocery store! Check out all of these shares here. Our newest add-on share is Maine cheese. Over twenty weeks you will receive cheeses from four outstanding Maine creameries. Camembert, cheddar, blue, feta and chevre, etc from these great creameries. Here are links to their websites…
New Member Orientation
Saturday June 4 and Sunday June 5 at 3pm we will have new member orientation here at the farm. This is not a required event but if you are a new member and are available, its a chance to meet the farmers, see where pick-up will be, see our Upic field, tour the greenhouse, and visit the pigs. If you can’t attend, no worries, we will be on hand at each pick-up to show the the ropes!
Delivered Share Members
We are working out the logistics of the delivered share this week. Maura will be in touch with details of delivery times and other logistics shortly.
Follow Our Progress On Instagram
Ever wonder what’s happening at the farm while you are watching the rain fall or the sun shine somewhere else? Get the Instagram app and follow us (crystalspringcsa). This week we had a movie of mustard mowing, a hummingbird in the tomato house, the wind on the hay field and more…. https://www.instagram.com/crystalspringcsa/