Good Eats Newsletter - June 18, 2008

Important Share Information
Welcome to the new Summer Share! Your first pick-up is tomorrow (Wednesday). If you are unsure of your pick-up times, please visit our website's Pick-Up page. If you have any questions with your pick-up please email Nancy Baron or call 802.586.2882 x2.

When Picking Up Your Share Please:
  • Cross your name off of the pick-up list. Then flip the page to find the pick-up instructions.
  • Follow the specific item list/instructions for the share you have selected to assemble your share. (The type of share you've signed up for is next to your name.)
  • When splitting your share, coordinate with your share-mate to make sure that you DON'T take double the amount of any items.
Newsletter Intro
Every Tuesday evening, we send out the Good Eats newsletter with helpful information, farm updates, the week's share contents, storage and use tips, localvore information and recipes. Though we do try to get the newsletter out just as early as we can, we do like to wait until the share is finalized. Sometimes there are last minute changes to the contents and we want to make sure that you've got the right information to go with your pick-up.

There are several of us who work on the newsletter each week. Heather writes the Localvore Lore section, giving everybody a good sense of where the localvore products are coming from as well as contributing recipes using the week's localvore items. Pete will often chime in with farm updates, thoughts and pleas for feedback. Nancy puts it all together and writes the rest, including the vegetable recipes.

Pete's Musings
Hi Everybody - Thanks for joining our Summer Share. We are very excited about the season ahead and are appreciative of your willingness to join us on a local eating adventure. In general our crops are looking very good. Ample rain and warmth has caused them to grow very fast the past 10 days and we are excited for the bounty of summer.

One exception is our strawberry crop. I completely goofed about 3 weeks ago and forgot to cover them with row cover on a frosty night. Strawberry blossoms are killed by temps. below 32 degrees and we lost about half our blossoms that night. The next morning I was so irritated with myself, as we had been nurturing that crop for a year and it was looking great. We may have our own berries next week or the week after but in the meantime we are bringing some in from Bob and Kim Gray at Four Corners Farm.

Bob and Kim run an exceptional farm in Newbury and Bob is known as the best berry grower in the State. They have been very free with their advice over the years and I have learned a lot from them. Their farm is particularly well rounded as they milk cows as well as growing vegetables and berries. They are able to rotate their veggie and berry crops with hay for the herd. This helps to increase soil structure and organic matter and to control weeds.

One drawback is that their berries are not organic. This is the first time that Good Eats has offered non-organic produce. We offer many localvore items that are not organic but offering non-organic produce is different from what we advertised. Please let us know if you think this is a bad idea. Some of you may be opposed to eating any produce that is not organic. If so, I encourage you to give the berries away. We have included them as an addition to the normal share, so essentially you have not paid for them. I'd really like feedback about this issue because I'm sure that in the future there will be times when we have a crop failure and our only local option is not organic. If you feel strongly one way or the other, please email us. - Pete

Montpelier Site Update
Some of you may have already heard that Nutty Steph is packing up her stuff and moving to a new location in Middlesex. Her last day in the store for pick-up is this Wednesday. She has been a great site host and we wish her all the best. Pick-up tomorrow will coincide with a moving sale. It will be your last chance to get outlet priced 5-pound bags of Vermont Granola and all her chocolate will be 30% OFF. She will be re-opening in the old Camp Meade quarters, next to Red Hen Baking Company, in September.

The good news is that our location will remain the same. Kelly McMahon will be taking the space from Steph to open her new May Day Studio. She will be moving in on the 25th and we are very happy to welcome her as a new site host. For now, it looks like pick-up hours will remain the same, 8am to 7pm on Wednesdays.

July 13th Open House
Please mark your calendars for our open house next month. We are hoping that everyone can make it to the farm from 11am to 3pm on Sunday, the 13th, with a CSA member meeting beginning at 2pm. There will be time to meet Pete and the crew, farm tours, games for the kids, hay rides, a potluck lunch, and more to be nailed down. We hope that you'll join us for the day. I'll be sending out a formal Open House announcement very soon with more specifics!

Localvore/Vegetable Share and Vegetable Only Share
This share period we have a couple of share options that people are participating in. The newsletter will be covering both. All members will always be receiving the same vegetable portions in their share. Localvore members will have additional items. Though we aim to make every share come out to 1/18 of your value for both veggie and localvore, in actuality each week may fluctuate a bit. Some weeks you may get a little more, some weeks a little less. This week for example, is heavy on the produce and light on the localvore items. Rest assured that we track your values very closely and everything will balance out over the course of the share. If you have any questions, please feel free to email me.

This Week's Share Contains
Russet Potatoes; French Breakfast Radishes; Bunch Dill; Pac Choi; Green Kale -or- Bunch Mibuna; Head Lettuce -or- Head Napa Cabbage; Purple Kohlrabi -or- Bunched Small Red Beets; Bunch of Scallions -or- Leeks -or- Garlic Scapes; Mesclun; Strawberries; Jasper Hill Constant Bliss Cheese*; Gleason Grains Whole-Wheat Bread Flour*; and Pete's Eggs*.

*Localvore share only.

Storage and Use Tips
Potatoes - Keep these in a cool, dark, dry place, like a drawer or cabinet. I like to keep mine in a paper bag that protects them from light and allows them to breathe. As the weather is warm, use these in the next week or two.
French Breakfast Radishes - These beautiful radishes have a crisp texture and a mild to delicately sweet flavor. They are best eaten raw. Slice them in a salad or serve them with coarse salt, fresh butter and a baguette for a French treat. Radishes should always be stored separate from the greens. Try adding the greens to a salad or mix in with other cooking greens in soups, sautes or stir-frys. Keep greens and radish ends loosely wrapped in their own plastic bags, in your crisper drawer.
Mesclun - We pre-wash our mesclun before it goes in your bags. Most of us at the farm are fine with this single wash and serve the greens in a salad straightaway. Store the greens in a loose plastic bag in your crisper drawer. If the greens seem damp, throw a cloth napkin or dishtowel in the bag with the greens to absorb any excess moisture.
Bunched Greens - Depending on the bag you grab, you may find the small beets with greens or a bunch of mibuna (Japanese green, similar to a mild mustard green). As with any of our bunched greens, you will want to remove them from their rubber band and give a quick soak in cold water. Lifting the greens from their cold-water bath should leave any extra dirt sinking to the bottom. Give them a ride in the salad-spinner or wrap with a towel before using in a saute.
Garlic Scapes - These are the tall, curly seed stalks pulled from growing garlic plants. Pulling them actually helps the garlic in the ground to grow, as energy from the plant is not diverted to the maturing of the seedpod. The scapes have a nice garlic flavor, without the bite of garlic cloves. These scapes are young and tender. You could chop them fine and add them raw to a salad, toss into a stir-fry, include in your favorite meatloaf or meatball recipe, or like me, stuff a roasting chicken with a few.

Localvore 'Lore from Heather
I am excited about the new share and possibilities for localvore food to include. I've been working on sourcing a few new products, such as a new cheese from Ploughgate Creamery and a goat cheese spread from Crooked Mile Goat Cheese. Also this share, I plan to include a meat/vegetarian protein item about once a month. We'll start with Summer Sausage from Maplewind Farm.

Bread for this share is still up in the air as our friends at Elmore Mt. Bread and Patchwork Bakery continue to work on a new flour source. Another bakery we hope to work with is Good Companion, where they grow, mill and bake all in one operation!

In this first share you'll find whole-wheat bread flour from Gleason Grains in Bridport, VT. Ben Gleason grows and mills bread and pastry flour. This is a light textured, finely milled whole-wheat flour. He does not sift the flour to remove any of the germ or bran.

From Jasper Hill we have Constant Bliss cheese. Andrew and Mateo Kehler, herdsman and cheese maker respectively, run this picturesque farm in Greensboro with their wives. This is a mold ripened semi-soft cheese, with a slightly firm, cake like center. Interestingly, the milk for this cheese is pumped directly to the cheese making room at milking time, and is never stored in the bulk tank. From one milking of their 40 Ayrshire cows, they make 300 pieces of Constant Bliss. It is a living cultured food, made from raw milk and aged 60 days. It is at it's best served at room temperature, so take it out of the fridge one hour before serving. The shelf life is about 10 days.

Lastly, in this share you'll find our own eggs. I am the chicken chicken-lady too here at Pete's. We have close to 125 layers and 2 big beautiful black and green roosters. Enjoy your localvore share!

Dilled Potatoes Vinaigrette
Adapted from Serves 4.

1 pound russet potatoes, peeled
1/2 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard
1 1/2 tablespoons apple cider or white-wine vinegar
2 1/2 teaspoons dry vermouth or dry white wine
3 tablespoons sunflower or olive oil
1/4 cup minced fresh dill
2 scallions, chopped
lettuce for serving

Place whole potatoes in a steamer set over boiling water. Steam them, covered, for 15-20 minutes, or until they are just tender. When cool enough to handle, slice crosswise into 1/3" thick rounds. In a bowl whisk together the mustard, the vinegar, the vermouth, and salt to taste, add the oil in a stream, whisking, and whisk the dressing until it is emulsified. Add the potatoes while they are still warm to the dressing and toss them gently with the dressing, dill, scallions and pepper to taste until they are coated well.

Let the potato mixture stand, tossing it occasionally, for 30 minutes and serve it at room temperature a top mesclun or lettuce leaves torn into pieces. The potato mixture may be made 1 day in advance and kept covered and chilled. Let the potato mixture return to room temperature before serving.

Stir-Fried Greens with Garlic
Feel free to substitute any tender green in this recipe. Serves 4.

1 head pac choi, roughly chopped with bottom end removed
1 bunch kale, mibuna, or radish greens chopped into 2" pieces
3 tablespoons cooking oil, such as sunflower or peanut
4 garlic scapes chopped fine, or 4 cloves garlic minced
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes, optional

Wash greens and spin dry, or wrap in towel to blot excess moisture. Heat oil in a large heavy bottomed skillet or wok over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Add garlic and salt, saute about 1 minute. Add greens and red pepper flakes, if using, and toss all to coat well. Increase the heat slightly and continue to toss the greens while they cook. Cook just until the leaves begin to wilt, but there is still strong green color in the leaves. Remove from heat, adjust seasonings and serve.

Easy No-Knead Whole Wheat Bread
'Think making homemade bread is too time consuming? Think again with this recipe from King Arthur Flour! A food processor or stand mixer with a sturdy paddle will make it even simpler.

2 cups warm water
1/4 cups maple syrup or honey
1 tbsp or packet dry yeast
4 cups whole-wheat flour
2 tsp salt

Dissolve the yeast and syrup or honey in the water in a large mixing bowl or food processor. When it's foamy, stir in the flour and salt. Beat vigorously for 5 minutes. Divide batter into 2 well-greased bread pans. Let dough rise 45 minutes to an hour.

Put the dough in a cold oven and turn on to 400F and bake 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 and bake another 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from pans to cool on a rack.

100% Whole-Wheat Bread
Here's how Heather makes her typical every-day loaf of bread. She often makes 1 loaf into a free form oval on a baking sheet, and uses the other 1/2 of the dough for rolls or cinnamon raisin bread. Making a sponge at the beginning helps develop the gluten. Using a stand mixer or food processor makes it quick.

2 cups warm water
1/4 cups maple syrup or honey
1 tbsp yeast
5 to 6 cups whole-wheat flour
2 tbsp oil
1 tbsp salt

Mix together 3 cups of flour, water, syrup and yeast. Beat well and set aside to bubble away for at least an hour. Mix in the oil, salt and enough of the remaining flour to make a kneadable dough. Knead 10 minutes by hand or mixer, or 45 seconds in a food processor.
Place in a bowl and cover with a damp towel or plastic bag. Allow to rise until double in volume, about an hour.

Grease 2 loaf pans or dust a large baking sheet with cornmeal.

Turn out dough onto a floured counter and knead briefly. Divide into two equal pieces. Flatten each into an oval and roll up into a log the length of your loaf pan or place on a cornmeal dusted baking sheet. Cover and set aside to rise about 45 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375F. Bake proofed loaves about 35 minutes.

Similar to a whole wheat tortilla, these are a classic Indian flat bread. The trick for tender breads is to mix the dough early and let it rest several hours. Get a friend or family member to help roll and cook them on the griddle.

2 1/4 cups sifted whole-wheat flour
1 tbsp oil
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 cup warm water

Stir all ingredients together to make a kneadable dough. Knead 8 minutes. Again, a food processor (for 1 minute) or mixer makes this easier. The dough should form a smooth ball of dough. Set aside covered in a bowl for 3 hours.

Divide dough into 12 balls. Roll each into a thin 6" circle. A tapered wooden rolling pin works well for this.

Heat a griddle over medium heat and as the chapatis are rolled out, cook them a minute on each side, until lightly flecked with brown spots.

Yogurt Variation:
Substitute 1/3 cup of yogurt for 1/3 cup of the water. Proceed as above.


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