Tuesday, June 21, 2011

June 22 - SCVWD - CSA

What's in the box?
Tomatoes, Corn, Summer Squash....Ha!  I had you there for a minute.   No, even though yesterday was the Summer Solstice, it's the last of the Spring vegetables.  So eat your peas while you may, for Father Time is a flying, and the peas that are here today, tomorrow will be dying.  Amish Peas,  Dinosaur kale, Swiss Chard, Fava Beans,  Italian Early Garlic, Walla Wall Onion, Flowers, Eggs, Portuguese Stuffing Cabbage and Rhubarb!  Finally.  And this week's special gift:  Organic Meyer Lemon Extract.

Yes, but all those vegetables are coming.  As soon as this heat wave breaks, I'll be digging up potatoes.  And boy have we been missing them.  I am tired of rice.  The first potatoes of the season will be Yukon Golds.  The reds will be later.  I think that all the purples drowned in the winter deluge.

Green Maters
I have seen green tomatoes, the first summer squash, the first pepper and the first cucumber.  No, none of them are ripe yet, but they are coming.  The first tomatoes will probably be Early Girls and Sungold Cherries.

This year we will have (barring anything I don't know about at this time...weather, fire, gopher, thieves, etc.)
Santa Clara Canner
African Queen
Herman's Special
Isis Candy
Cherokee Green
Indian Stripe
Neves Azorian Red
Aunt Getries Gold
Sarnowski Polish Plum
Black Cherry and Roman Stripe
Now that' a tomato line-up.  And here they are all lined up.  There's about 40 tomatoes in the field.  Yikes.   I have a new dehydrator this year.  Thank you Leo.  So, we are going to have dried tomatoes again.  Yeah!  As they roll out of the field and into your boxes/bags,  I'd really like to know which ones you really like.  This year's Early Girl is an OP tomato.  So if we like it, we'll keep it.  If we don't, well we'll keep trialing tomatoes till we find a tomato that you all love.  As always, every year we will try new tomatoes until we can figure out the top 10 for the farm.

I planted 10 more rhubarb bushes early this year. Actually, I think I planted 30 and ended up with 10.  I started them from seed, so it will be 2 more years before we can have rhubarb every week for the entire spring. As it is, this is the only rhubarb you will get for the season.  I have so many rhubarb recipes that I can hardly make up my mind what to make with my share, Pie? Jam? Cordial, Muffins....oh my the list is so long.  I think I'll make a cordial this year.  But, here's a recipe I think you'll all like.
Baby Rhubarb

Rhubarb Cream Cheese Bars
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup old-fashioned or quick-cooking oats
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup sour cream
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger or candied ginger chopped very fine.
2 1/2 cups sliced fresh rhubarb

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Line 9-inch square baking pan with foil; spray foil with cooking spray.  Make it big enough to hang over the edges, so you can get the bars out.

2. Beat butter in medium bowl at medium speed 1 minute or until creamy. Beat in brown sugar 30 to 60 seconds or until well-blended. At low speed, beat in flour, oats and salt 30 to 60 seconds or until crumbly. Reserve 1/2 cup of the oat mixture; press remaining mixture into bottom of pan.

3. Wipe bowl clean. Add cream cheese; beat at medium speed 1 minute or until fluffy. Beat in sugar 1 minute or until creamy. At low speed, beat in sour cream 15 seconds. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla and ginger.

4. Sprinkle rhubarb over crust; cover with batter. Bake 20 minutes. Sprinkle with reserved 1/2 cup oat mixture; bake an additional 25 to 30minutes or until puffed and lightly browned, and knife inserted in center comes out clean.

5. Cool on wire rack to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate several hours or overnight. Remove from pan using foil; cut into bars.  (My sister sent this recipe to me from the Cooking Club of America).  Who knew?
Corn just beginning to Tassel

So many of you asked for this recipe last week that I decided to put it on the blog, so we all know where it is.  For those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about, that was the bread in last week's boxes.

Lemon Nut Bread
1 c. sugar
1/3 melted butter
2 T. lemon extract
2 eggs
1/2 c. chopped pecans (or not)
grated rind of one lemon and the juice
1 1/2 c. flour
1 t. baking powder
1 t. salt
1/2 c. milk

Sift the flour, salt and baking powder together.  Cream the sugar, butter and lemon extract; add the eggs and beat well.  Add dry ingredients alternately with milk and beat just enough to blend.  Fold in grated rind and nuts.  Bake in well greased loaf pan 350 degrees 50-60 minutes.  Remove from oven.

On the stove mix the juice of the lemon you stole the peel from with 1/2 c. sugar.  Stir until sugar dissolves, but don't boil.   Prick the top with a fork to make more holes and cracks.  Drizzle over the top of the bread.  Do not cut for 24 hours.  Will last up to 3 months in the fridge....ha ha.  Sallie Rice contributed this recipe to the Sisters of the Holy Name Cookbook.  A real treasure of a cookbook which I found in a jumble sale in Los Gatos...when dinosaur kale still walked the earth.

Dinosaur Kale
Alright who went and named my favorite kale, (Cavolo Nero) Dinosaur Kale?  Was that someone trying to get their kids to eat kale?  There's some great kale recipes over here at this blog:


So FAR there have been no bronto sightings in the garden.    Next time you guys are going to get the Red Russian Kale, so that the other folks can play with the Lacinato, Cavolo Nero, Tuscan, Palm Tree, Dino Kale.  Thomas Jefferson grew Cavolo Nero at Monticello.  It's from the Campania region of Italy and is one of the traditional ingredients in minestrone.  It predates pizza.  No, really.
summer squash, beans & sunflowers

Some of you got strawberries this week.   Why didn't everyone get them?   No one has returned any of the containers I have previously packed them in.  I don't have anything left in the cupboard to pack strawberries in.  So, if you want berries in future weeks, send me something to pack them in.   Sour cream or cottage cheese containers are just the right size.  I know, I know, I could break down and buy those green plastic baskets to pack them in...but that just wouldn't be me.   So rummage your cupboard and send me those containers that you can't find the lid for.  Write your name on the bottom and then everyone will have berries.  I won't even bring up vases, but I'm down to the last 6.....

Have a nice week.  Stay cool.

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