Summer Subscription 2020 Week 10B

What a beautiful way to start the month of August. I chose to grow these sunflowers right by our parking lot, and they had the quickest "days to harvest" growth period. Mostly we grow herbs (and weeds!) alongside the greenhouse, but in the future I'd like to grow more sunflowers there, because they bring so many smiles.


P.S. This photo was taken by Amanda, and if you don't follow us on Instagram and Facebook, consider doing so. Amanda and Eric have both "taken over the Instagram" to show you a day in their lives at the farm. And speaking of amazing crew members, here is my aunt - "Ciocci Lorraine" - with a gigantic beet!


Click to scroll through the remaining photos, which include a fresh summer tea blend delivery from Jim of Seasonal Catering, Amanda playing our silly game of "Can We Get an Exact Poundage of Veggies on the Scale," a 2.44 lb. kohlrabi, and some more fun and beauty on the farm.



August always leaves me feeling a little melancholy. Personally, my time on the farm starts to come to an end, as well as for many of our other crew members who head back to school (Amanda, Randy's mom Dawn...). To be honest, we haven't even reached peak farming season yet, and our season is extremely busy until Halloween. This is the first year that Randy and I have discussed what we're going to do: who is going to take over the deliveries when Ryan heads to UConn, who will manage the farm stand, who will help in the field when our high school aged crew members have to go, and whether or not I'll be able to do a good job with email, communication, newsletters, and managing our subscription program when I'm back at work. It's the first year that we've honestly worried, and planning for the upcoming months needs to become a priority now.


Randy considers September 15th to be the "hurdle" of farming season. It seems to be busy now, but our heaviest labor consists of harvesting squash, zucchini, and cucumbers every other day. Now we're starting to add in tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, corn, hot peppers, and eventually melons and ground cherries, on top of harvesting for subscriptions, markets, and planting. By September 15th, Randy has all of his fall lettuces and greens in the ground and can focus solely on harvesting. It's quite a ways away, but some of our crew members are leaving soon. Next week will be Ryan's final time delivering, and I only have 3 weeks left myself.


This is another reason why we value you all so much. As we've mentioned, you all have been the kindest, most understanding, enthusiastic, and engaged members we've ever had. Thank you so much for being with us.


Don't forget that we postponed Tuesday 8/4 deliveries until Wednesday 8/5 due to the tropical storm. Pickups will remain the same. Thanks for your flexibility!


It's Tomato Time!

I wanted to share this video all about harvesting tomatoes and some of the challenges that come along with it. No matter what... it's always worth it! I love my time in the field picking tomatoes.

P.S. For everyone who's new this year... did you know that Randy hates tomatoes? I'm on my own with BLTs for dinner!



Don't forget about our Breakfast Club - we're trying to eat more vegetables for breakfast.

Katie C. made a zucchini egg bake, Terry made toast with cucumbers, mint, and tomatoes, and Carrie made cabbage hash. Thank you all for the inspiration and camaraderie! I've been making shakes with 1 leaf of kale, 1 small cucumber, a teaspoon of chia seeds, a handful of berries, a splash of pineapple juice, and a splash of milk to enjoy mid-morning.


Please share in our Facebook group and/or email me with the items you're making for breakfast... I'd love to see!


One of our other big jobs lately has been harvesting onions. Once they reach a certain stage in their life cycle, it is important to harvest them before they rot in the ground. We harvested most of the onions to date and are getting them into storage. We have drying racks that we space them out on to promote air flow, and they stay in a cooler, dark place on these racks through the fall until we use them up. Mostly we save our onions for the fall subscription, so we figured we would give you one last round of fresher onions this week. There is no difference, really, between the flavor and quality of fresh and cured onions, just that fresh onions are shinier and have some useable green tops.


The Uncrating and Randy's Message will be posted on Wednesday, 8/5.


Contents (In approximate order from shortest shelf life to longest):

Small:

  • 1 lb. of tomatoes

  • 1 pint of grape or cherry tomatoes

  • 1 bonus bell pepper!

  • 1 lb. of cucumbers

  • 1 lb. of squash

  • 1 lb. of zucchini

  • 1 lb. of red onions

Large:

  • 2 lbs. of tomatoes

  • 1 pint of grape or cherry tomatoes

  • 1 bonus bell pepper!

  • A few mixed hot peppers

  • 1 Asian eggplant

  • 1 lb. of cucumbers

  • 1 bunch of cutting celery

  • 1 lb. of squash

  • 1 lb. of zucchini

  • 1 lb. of red onions

Caring For Your Share:

  • Store the cucumbers, squash, peppers, eggplant, and zucchini in the fridge as is. Wash when ready to use.

  • Store the cutting celery with the ends in a glass of water in the fridge.

  • Keep the tomatoes out of the fridge and pour the cherries or grapes out into a bowl. Store out of direct sunlight, like on a counter. Wash before using.

  • Keep the onions in a cool, dark place out of the fridge, such as a pantry, where it will have air flow.

LGF Cooking Club:

Roasted Grape Tomatoes: https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/claire-robinson/roasted-grape-tomatoes-recipe-1946352


Snickerdoodle Zucchini Bread with Coconut Oil (Thanks for wowing us with this idea on our Facebook page, RoseAnn!): https://snugandcozylife.com/snickerdoodle-zucchini-bread-with-coconut-oil/


Cucumber and Red Onion Salad: https://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/cucumber-and-red-onion-salad/


Easy French Ratatouille:

https://www.thekitchn.com/one-pot-recipe-easy-french-ratatouille-recipes-from-the-kitchn-106669


Changing up the way you enjoy different vegetables is so important to keep it fun. Yellow Squash and Zucchini Gratin: https://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/yellow-squash-and-zucchini-gratin/


Creamy Cherry Tomato and Summer Squash Pasta: https://cookieandkate.com/creamy-cherry-tomato-summer-squash-pasta/

The Breakfast Club (Ha!): We're doing a breakfast challenge over in our Facebook group by trying to incorporate more veggies into our breakfasts.


Thank you, Kris, for the suggestion about serving baked tomatoes as a side dish alongside bacon, eggs, and toast.

Parmesan Oven Baked Tomatoes:

https://www.spendwithpennies.com/herb-crusted-baked-tomatoes/ Egg-Stuffed Breakfast Tomatoes: https://healthyrecipesblogs.com/egg-stuffed-tomatoes/


Tomato Breakfast Toasts: https://www.sunset.com/recipe/tomato-breakfast-toasts


Scrambled Eggs with Peppers and Onions:

https://www.cookedbyjulie.com/scrambled-eggs-with-peppers-and-onions/ Zucchini Egg Bake (Thanks for the idea, Katie C!:) https://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/zucchini-egg-bake/



What else do our members suggest? "I think we’ll try toast with cottage cheese or cream cheese spread on it and top it off with tomatoes and cucumbers!!" - Terry "Love veggies for breakfast! On the fresh side, wilt freshly chopped spinach in small amount of spray/oil, light sprinkle onion powder then add beaten egg (w/bit of milk if you prefer) and/or some grated cheddar. Can do the same with zucchini, leftoverbroccoli florets (esp. steamed florets). If you prefer on the side, great use of leftover potatoes, carrots, actually whatever you want. Last week I used leftover sautéed asparagus, (boiled ok too) chopped it up, let it warm & added 1/2 c eggbeaters (was out of eggs). If you let it be while cooking, moving edges toward center, you'll get an omelet effect, even flip it over if you must. Aka frittata if you don't scramble it." - Karen "Toast w/arugula & tomato and a poached egg or hard boiled egg. Drizzle balsamic or Trader Joe’s Everything Bagel Seasoning. Last night I roasted kohlrabi/beets/onion/potatoes. I sometimes heat this up for breakfast w/hot sauce (w or w/o an egg)." - Norma


"I love having pre made healthy breakfasts so I meal prep egg white bowls. I use my instant pot with a Pyrex bowel (probably could be in the oven too but instant pot helps with the heat in the summer) and after I spray the bowl with some oil or non stick spray I fill the bowl with egg whites and add whatever veggies I have. Kale, arugula, bok Choy, tomatoes, zucchinni, onion, broccoli asparagus. Throw in some salt and pepper. And then just let it bake until the eggs are cooked. It keeps in the fridge all week. I usually use the small 2 cup bowls and make all 5 at once (have to do one at a time in instant pot but super quick) and just reach for it every morning. Tastes good hot or cold!" - Stephanie


Cooking Tip(s) of the Week:

The Best Way to Store Onions: https://www.thespruceeats.com/how-to-store-onions-1389144


How to Deseed a Pepper: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dOj4bWosXoI


In 2017, I shared this infographic in the newsletter. I thought it would be beneficial to large shareholders:


Biweekly Catchup Time:

We're so excited because, as mentioned previously, tomatoes don't usually come until week 10. Well, we've got grape tomatoes and sungolds for week 9! We really had just enough to make it happen. Fingers crossed we'll be able to work larger (globe) tomatoes into shares next week, too. It's hot this week, but we'll take it because it means summer favorites are making progress! Here are some pictures from the week: Our first harvest of tomatoes, progress on the peppers and melons, and various shots from Booth Hill.


Sincere apologies to anyone who got a moldy cabbage last week. It really is so tough to grow cabbages that we've debated giving up. It happens every year: we get a heavy rain while the heads are forming, then once they're harvested and put into the cooler, mold forms from the water inside. It's nearly impossible to tell from the outside - sometimes we can tell if the leaves look a little black and we compost the heads when that happens. Other times we have no idea until they are cut into. We heard from so many of you that it seemed consistent across that harvest of heads. To make it up to you, delivery members will receive a few extra goodies in their bags, and pickup members will get to add on to their shares from a surplus area.


This week, large subscription members will be receiving a head of savoy cabbage. If yours ends up moldy inside, please send us an email so we can make it right!

And on that note, would you like to learn about composting?!

Here's a link to the EPA's information about it, as well. https://www.epa.gov/recycle/composting-home


This is the composter that I have. Remember, don't despair if your greens have bug holes. They're perfectly safe to eat and the arugula, Asian mix, and bok choy are all pesticide-free!


What else is new here?

We've been planting beans that will hopefully be ready for the beginning of October. They were planted in the former place of the lettuce and escarole. Beets are next to be planted this week in place of the garlic that we finished harvesting last week. Melons, peppers, eggplant, corn, and potatoes are making progress to be ready within the next couple of weeks, too! Crew members Ella & Amanda have been seeding lots of fall crops to be transplanted later this season, such as brassicas (cabbage family crops) and lettuce. The final planting of corn for the season happened this past week, too.


Stephanie Unbags Her Share: Thank you to All-Star Stephanie for unbagging last week's share for us and giving us tips!

Here is the link to the fritters recipe that Stephanie talks about. http://leavenoleftovers.com/yellow-summer-squash-fritters/

And a picture of her end result!


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247 Waverly Rd. Shelton, CT 06484

laurelglenfarm@gmail.com

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