Sunday, September 25, 2011

RECIPE: Easy Fall Salad with Cranberry Vinaigrette

1/2 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup cranberries
1/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons white sugar
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1 pinch freshly ground black pepper
Salad Mix
1 head endive, chopped
1 Anjou pears
1/2 cup toasted walnuts, chopped
1/2 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese


Vinaigrette: In a saucepan, combine vinegar and cranberries. Cook over medium heat until cranberries soften. Remove from heat; add olive oil, sugar, salt and pepper. Place in blender and mix until smooth. Refrigerate until chilled.

Core and julienne pear.

In a large bowl, combine the Romaine lettuce, endive, diced pears, walnuts and Gorgonzola. Toss and drizzle with enough dressing to coat.

RECIPE: Onion Soup

2 tbsp olive oil
2 cups sliced onions
1/3 cup peeled garlic cloves (12-14 cloves)
2 bay leaves
2 ½ tsp salt or to taste
6 turns of freshly ground black pepper
2 qts chicken stock
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 tsp fresh basil, chopped
1 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
2 cups diced bread
½ cup heavy cream
½ cup grated parmesan
1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped

1. Heat oil and add onions, cloves of garlic, bay leaves, salt and pepper. Caramelize the onions for at least 7 minutes.
2. Add the stock, minced garlic and basil and thyme. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 40 minutes.
3. Increase the heat and whisk in the bread and cream. Whisk until the bread is dissolved, about 10 minutes.
4. In a blender or using a stick blender, puree the soup until smooth.
5. Whisk in the parmesan and parsley.
6. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

RECIPE: Quick Baked Leeks

2 Tbsp olive oil
1/4c flour
1 1/2c skim milk
1/2c cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 tsp garlic powder
salt and pepper to taste
4 medium leeks, halved lengthwise

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease 9x12 in baking pan
2. Melt butter over low heat. Stir in flour until smooth.
3. Gradually stir in milk and cheese until cheese is melted. Season with garlic powder, salt and pepper. Remove from heat.
4. Arrange the leeks in a single layer in the pan and cover with cheese sauce.
5. Bake for 30 min in oven until leeks are tender and sauce is bubbly.

RECIPE: Skillet Gnocchi with Chard & White Beans

In this one-skillet supper, we toss dark leafy greens, diced tomatoes and white beans with gnocchi and top it all with gooey mozzarella. Serve with a mixed green salad with vinaigrette.

6 servings | Active Time: 30 minutes | Total Time: 30 minutes

• 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
• 1 16-ounce package shelf-stable gnocchi, (see Tip)
• 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
• 4 cloves garlic, minced
• 1/2 cup water
• 6 cups chopped chard leaves, (about 1 small bunch) or spinach
• 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes with Italian seasonings
• 1 15-ounce can white beans, rinsed
• 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
• 1/2 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
• 1/4 cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese

1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add gnocchi and cook, stirring often, until plumped and starting to brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
2. Add the remaining 1 teaspoon oil and onion to the pan and cook, stirring, over medium heat, for 2 minutes. Stir in garlic and water. Cover and cook until the onion is soft, 4 to 6 minutes. Add chard (or spinach) and cook, stirring, until starting to wilt, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, beans and pepper and bring to a simmer. Stir in the gnocchi and sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan. Cover and cook until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbling, about 3 minutes.


Hi Folks,

This was another wet week, so mostly it was harvesting for distributions and a day of hand weeding greens for fall.  Soon it'll be time to spread compost and seed cover crops for winter, with 2012 in mind...  Thank goodness for such a great crew, harvesting in pounding rains, cheerfully learning the "ins and outs" of farming in the extremes of a new New England climate.  Will the rains only come harder next year?  Will it be a drought?  We wonder and will plant accordingly.  Some on the low, some on the high.  Wouldn't it be great to have an easy year, 1 inch of rain per week, with a dry spell in August?

This week's picture: direct seeded fall turnips coming up next to the leeks.

Here's the approximate share for week 16:

chard/ salad mix
collards/ broccoli greens
hot peppers
winter squash
cabbage (small, thanks to excessive rains)
lemon balm


Sunday, September 18, 2011


Hi Folks,
Well, we're at week 15 and the final planting of fall greens like spinach, baby kale, broccoli raab, arugula, salad mix, mustard greens, and baby turnips are all in the ground.  The land was finally dry enough to drive on with the tractor to mow down old crops, chisel plow and rototill to prep ground for planting.   We also found time between the weekly harvests,  to bulk harvest the winter squash (looks like a terrific crop!) and finish the onion harvest. 
We'll attempt this week to start spreading compost and prepping ground for our garlic and winter cover crops.  If the weather turns wet we'll sit in the greenhouse and chop the stems of garlic and divide it into seed for planting and bulbs to give out in the shares.
This week's pictures: Baxter and Dan direct seeding kale.

Your approximate share this week:

salad mix
winter squash
lemon balm

Dan and Tracy

Sunday, September 11, 2011

RECIPE: Carrot Soup with Ginger and Lemon

This soup can be eaten hot or cold. With the back & forth weather we've been having lately, it's nice to have the option. If you use a food processor to chop your veggies, it will cut down on your chopping time. This is a very quick & easy summer soup. Lovely!


1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
2 tablespoons finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
2 cloves minced garlic
1 1/4 pounds medium carrots, peeled, chopped (about 3 cups)
2 tomatoes, seeded, chopped (about 1 1/3 cups)
1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
3 cups (or more) chicken stock or vegetable stock (I use vegetable stock purchased from the store)
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 tablespoons sour cream
1 small carrot, peeled, grated


Melt butter in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion; sauté 4 minutes. Add ginger and garlic; sauté 2 minutes. Add chopped carrots, tomatoes and lemon peel; sauté 1 minute. Add 3 cups stock and bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover partially and simmer until carrots are very tender, about 20 minutes. Cool slightly.

Puree soup in batches in blender, or use an immersion blender (it turns out smoother in a regular blender). Return soup to pot. Mix in lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.)

Bring soup to simmer, thinning with more stock, if desired. Ladle into bowls. Top each with sour cream and grated carrot, if desired.

RECIPE: Baby Greens with a Warm Gorgonzola Dressing

4 slices bacon
1 pear, thinly sliced
3/4 cup olive oil
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 clove garlic, minced
2 ounces crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
6 cups mixed baby greens
2 tablespoons toasted pecans

Place the bacon in a large, deep skillet, and cook over medium-high heat, turning occasionally, until evenly browned, about 10 minutes. Drain the bacon slices on a paper towel-lined plate; crumble and set aside.

Combine the olive oil, red wine vinegar, white sugar, salt, garlic, and Gorgonzola cheese in a blender; blend until smooth. Pour the dressing into a small saucepan over medium-low heat and warm gently.

Toss the baby greens, pecans, pears, and crumbled bacon together in a salad bowl; drizzle dressing over salad and toss to coat. Serve immediately.

RECIPE: Roasted Beets and Sautéed Beet Greens

1 bunch beets with greens
1/4 cup olive oil, divided
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped onion (optional)
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Wash the beets thoroughly, leaving the skins on, and remove the greens. Rinse greens, removing any large stems, and set aside. Place the beets in a small baking dish or roasting pan, and toss with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. (If you wish to peel the beets, it is easier to do so once they have been roasted)

Cover, and bake for 45 to 60 minutes, or until a knife can slide easily through the largest beet.

When the roasted beets are almost done, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a skillet over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and onion, and cook for a minute. Tear the beet greens into 2 to 3 inch pieces, and add them to the skillet. Cook and stir until greens are wilted and tender. Season with salt and pepper. Serve the greens as is, and the roasted beets sliced with either red-wine vinegar, or butter and salt and pepper.


Hi folks,
It rained and rained last week, soaking already soaked crops and soils, sending our season headlong out of summer and into fall.  We really couldn't do anything but just eek out our harvests for distributions until Friday afternoon, when we finally had dry enough conditions to handweed fall greens.  Where would we be without a really great crew of apprentices, smiling in the pounding rain, hauling in potatoes out of the mud?  And really good raingear too.  
The crops can't be appreciating all the moisture,  hopefully we'll pull through with minimal damage. I know many other farmers in this area have been hard hit by it all.  Several CSA farms I know of have lost half or more of what was left for the fall.  Even farms on high dry ground are starting to feel the stresses inherent with excessive moisture.  So I'm thankful for the relative bounty that continues to pour in, and hope you've been enjoying it as well!

This week's probable share:

Sweet Peppers
Salad Mix
Winter Squash
Hot Peppers

Dan and Tracy

Pictured is early morning salad harvest

Sunday, September 4, 2011

RECIPE: Sesame Soba Noodles with Kale

1 package soba or udon noodles

For the sauce:

1 clove garlic
1/2 c tahini
3 tbsp tamari
2 tsp maple syrup
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 c twig tea

For the kale:

2 tbsp sesame oil
1 bunch kale or Swiss chard, chopped and rinsed
1/2 c leek, cut into half moon slices, rinsed

Cook the pasta in 2 quarts of boiling water for 8 minutes. Check for tenderness, drain set aside and pour a splash of sesame oil over to keep from sticking.

In a blender combine all the sauce ingredients. If the sauce is too thick add more tea. Blend until smooth.

In the same pot that you cooked the noodles heat the sesame oil and add the leek. Sauté for 2 minutes, then add kale and cover the pot. Let steam 3 minutes and uncover the pot. Turn off the flame and stir to combine.

To assemble: add noodles to a bowl, add kale then top with sauce, enjoy with chopsticks!

RECIPE: Grated Carrots and Beets

- 1 pound carrots
- 1 pound uncooked beets (get small, young ones, with smooth skin and firm flesh)
- 2 cloves garlic, pressed or finely minced, or 1 teaspoon garlic paste
- 1 tablespoon hazelnut oil (or walnut, or squash seed, or olive oil)
- 1 tablespoon honey vinegar (or cider or balsamic vinegar)
- 1 teaspoon strong Dijon mustard
- Tabasco sauce or poblano pepper flakes, to taste
- Smoked salt (or regular sea salt, or gomasio, or zaatar)
- Freshly ground black pepper

Optional add-ins:
- Leafy fresh herbs (cilantro, chervil, flat-leaf parsley), chopped
- Toasted nuts (almonds, pine nuts, cashews, peanuts) or seeds (sesame, sunflower seeds)
- Shaved parmesan or cubed feta cheese or crumbled blue cheese
- Mâche or baby spinach leaves
- A grated apple or shallot
- Any dried herb, spice, or spice mix you think might work

Serves 4 to 6.

Trim, peel, and grate the carrots and beets with a box grater or the grating disk of your food processor. Place the rest of the main ingredients, from garlic to black pepper, in a large salad bowl, add the grated carrots and beets, and toss until well combined. Add any desired add-ins and toss again.

Taste, adjust the seasoning, and let stand for 30 minutes, if you can, before serving: the beets and carrots will render juices that will make the salad moister. If you don't have that kind of time and the salad does not feel quite moist enough, add a dash of citrus juice, tomato juice, or any sort of juice.

RECIPE: Sweet Onion Jam

(use with roasted or grilled pork, steaks, grilled chicken or duck)

1 lb sweet onions
1 1/2 tbsp unsalted butter
1/2 c light brown sugar
1/4 c dark corn syrup
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/4 c dry red wine
dash salt

1. Peel and cut onion lengthwise in thin slices
2. Melt the butter in a large skillet, add sliced onions and cook covered over med-low heat until tender and translucent. Stir frequently
3. Combine remaining ingredients and add to sliced onions. Stir to blend,
4. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for about 40 min until syrupy.
5. Pour into a bowl and cool to room temperature.
Refrigerate up to 5 days or freeze for later use.