Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Chard Reappears!

We have done our last farm pick-up.  Our season is over.  It's kind of sad.  But we have lots of farm food that will last for a while.  Happily, the chard reappeared for one last time!  There have only been 2 weeks (I think) where there has not been chard.  I was glad to see it return.  I will probably freeze it tomorrow as I am going out of town and won't be able to eat it before I leave.  In addition to the chard, we got a couple of very large sweet potatoes, a head of lettuce, carrots, celeriac (skipped the rutabagas as Bill thinks he does not like them), salad turnips (could have mixed and matched with regular turnips, but I still have some from last week, so stuck with the smaller ones), some loose Adirondack blue potatoes (there were also russets to mix and match), a bag (maybe 5 pounds?) of mixed yellow and red onions, and a bag (5+ pounds?) of Rose Gold potatoes.  Oh yes, another stalk of Brussels sprouts, too.  I think I will roast these tomorrow with an onion, some potatoes, and chicken.  I still have my sweet potato from last week, so I think I will cook that and my two from this week on Thursday--I dropped one and the end came off, so I do not want it to go bad.  I love sweet potatoes.  I will possibly cook my rutabaga before I leave as well, and eat that--I think I will be the only one eating it!  I also bought a dozen eggs and a package of breakfast sausage from the farm store.
So my freezer is full, I have a good supply of potatoes, carrots, onions, and cabbage that will last for a while and a few winter squash as well.  There is still plenty of farm produce left to eat, even if we won't be heading off to the farm every Tuesday anymore.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Farm Soup

I love, love, love soup.  In the winter, I crave it.  In the summer, I crave salad.  We have had many farm salads over the course of our CSA season, and tonight we had farm soup.  I cooked a package of hot Italian sausage from the farm store--had to add some oilive oil to the pot because there was so little fat in the sausage.  I added this to my larger (7-quart) Crock Pot, which already contained potatoes, carrots, turnips, a big red onion, beans (from the freezer) and celeriac--all from the farm.  I added water and set it on low.  Off we went to facilitate and record a story circle and to walk around Boothbay, where we had not been before.  When we came home it smelled wonderful!  I added the rest of last week's kale, some garlic, oregano, and Italian seasoning and let it cook for two more hours, still on the low setting.  I cooked a package of pierogies and spooned the soup on top of those.  A little sprinkle of Parmesan cheese finished the dish.  YUM!

Tomorrow will be our last pick-up of the season.  I will miss them.  But I know that I have not had my last bowl of farm soup for the season!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Off the Blech List

I can happily report that I have removed Brussels sprouts off of the "blech" list.  However, I do keep in mind that these were small, local, and still on the stalk.  I sauteed them in olive oil with leeks, a bit of kale, and some ham from the farm.  They were good--tasted very much like cabbage to me, which is why I would probably just use cabbage in future rather than buying Brussels sprouts.  I did not think they were fabulous enough to warrant all the prep that seems to go into cooking the larger ones, when I could just use cabbage and be happy.  Maybe I am missing something.  Still, I see how that my issue in the past was probably with the cooking method (boiling) and not the sprouts themselves.  I don't care for boiled cabbage, either, but I like it sauteed in olive oil with onions and garlic until crisp-tender.

In other "blech" news, we determined that when Bill says he hates turnips, he probably means rutabagas.  He had never heard of rutabagas until last week and after reading about them, we discovered that there is different terminology used all over.  In Ireland they call them turnips, and call what we know as turnips "white turnips."  At least that's what we read.  So based on his description of the food, we figure his mother was using "turnip" to refer to a rutabaga.  He has agreed to try the turnips that we have here.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Rooting Around

Today is root day.  We went to the farm and hauled home roots, leaves, and other goodies!  The farm share this week contained turnips, rutabagas, potatoes, onions, shallots, leeks, kale, Brussels sprouts (which always make me think of my friend, Karen O who once told a funny Christmas and Brussels sprouts story!), carrots, lettuce, celeriac, winter squash and a giant sweet potato!  This will be interesting.  Bill has repeatedly reminded me of his hatred of all things turnip.  Mind you, I believe he had them boiled and mashed, which seemed to be the way he ate anything not out of a can when he was a youngster.  I am thinking that I might just eat the turnips raw with hummus, but this is said by someone who had never eaten a turnip in her life, so we will have to see about that.  Rutabagas are another thing that I have never eaten, but there I think a simple potato/rutabaga mash sounds good.  Brussels sprouts--here it is my turn to say, "blech."  BUT I have only had them boiled or pressure cooked or something as a kid.  Now I plan to try them in some olive oil with shallots (?) and.....well, I will figure that out.  Maybe I won't have to say, "blech" anymore.  The celeriac, I confess, is starting to pile up.  I did use the biggest one I had making a potato/apple/celeriac soup, which was OK and not really worth the work, I thought.  Bill didn't care for it.  So I will roast some of it and put some of it in veggie soups when I make those.  It keeps, apparently.

So this was our penultimate trip to the farm for pick-up.  Next week will be the end of it all.  It makes me sad.  I loved doing this--even when I was hot, sweaty, and cranky.  I am not sure that I have ever been so aware of the changing seasons and even the little mini-changes that happen throughout each season.  The great thing is that even when we are no longer picking up food, I will still have some of what we got this season.  I have pesto, greens of various kinds, and beans in the freezer.  I have sausage from the farm pigs in there, too.  And some of the things that we are picking up now will keep for a while--carrots, cabbage, winter squash, onions, potatoes--so long after the pick-ups stop, I will still be eating from the farm.  Yay!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Carrots and Sticks

Things have really shifted.  The leaves have really turned color now and on the way to the farm this afternoon we could look out on either side of the road and see a riot of color.  Red, orange, yellow and still some green glowing against a bright blue sky.  Beautiful.  There was a nice breeze blowing and it was not too hot.  Once again we were greeted by a stick-fetching dog, so we played throw the stick for a while before getting our share.  The U-pick field was killed by a frost we had last week (before it hit 80 over the weekend--crazy!), so all we had to do was play fetch and pick up our share. 

For the first time there was no chard.  It was killed by the frost.  So I chose to get all baby bok choi rather than kale.  I have not gotten much bok choi this season, so I might as well get it while I can!  We also got carrots, lettuce, two more celeriac (there is celeriac/apple/potato soup on the menu in a couple of days!), some shallots, 2 leeks, a bowl of potatoes--I chose to get a mix of Adirondack reds, blues, and rose golds--a head of cabbage, and a couple of delicata squash.  On our way out, we played a little more fetch with a bigger stick, and then came home.

Tonight we will have fish tacos (tostada for bill) with cabbage, potatoes, and onion topped with cheese, lettuce and salsa.  I had imagined this with some freshly snipped cilantro from the U-pick field, but alas, that was not to be.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

New Week/New Season

Ok, last week summer had returned.  This week it's fall, although the weekend is supposed to be annoyingly sunny and warm.  But for today we have rain, rain and a little more rain.  At the farm, there were puddles in the U-pick field as seen from afar and I had decided before heading over there that I did not really feel in need of flowers and herbs enough to wade through the mud, so it was a quick trip in and out with our share.

We brought home a head of lettuce, hot mustard greens (there was also endive), a large red pepper, a head of broccoli, 2 red onions, carrots, beets, a bowl of Adirondack blue potatoes (could have mixed and matched with Adirondack red and Kueka golds, but I have had these in previous weeks, so I chose the ones I had not had before), 4 salad turnips, a bowl of chard, 2 large celeriac bulbs, and 2 acorn squash.  The season has turned.