Summer Subscription 2020 Week 4B

Happy Summer, everyone!


Garlic scapes are here! This is literally one of my favorite crops of the season. Watch the video from week 2B for more info about exactly what they are. My all-time favorite thing to do is make homemade butter in the food processor, mix in chopped garlic scapes, and use it as a spread on bagels, other bread products, and fish.




Squash and zucchini got the memo that summer began last week. They decided to come in practically overnight this past weekend. Since we missed the first haul, many of them became oversized, but there still isn't quite enough to provide to everyone yet. Large share members are receiving one big zucchini this week and then everyone will share in the bounty of squash and zucchini next week (and for many weeks to come!)


Yes, there is ONE more week of escarole, and then we promise this will be the last time you'll see it for a while. 272 heads were ready to go this week (we counted!), and it would be such a shame to have them go to waste. If you're sick of escarole, we don't really blame you, but I have a couple more really good suggestions before we say goodbye to it. If you really can't stand the sight of it anymore, check out the tip at the end of the newsletter to learn how to freeze greens, including escarole, until you're ready for it again.



Tomato plants looking healthy! This lack of rain is still unbelievable and scary! We're so glad we have the drip irrigation and sprinklers to keep the crops alive, but it sure would be more sustainable to have rain instead.

One head of escarole!




We have to brag about our crew this year! On Monday they rose to the challenge by harvesting for subscriptions all before noon so we could have them packed by early afternoon, while also harvesting all of the squash and zucchini before lunchtime. It's been HOT, but not one of them has complained or made excuses about the hard work here. They even harvested peas on end for hours on Monday afternoon too! We're hoping to do a little bit of team building work with them on Saturday.



We're debating what to do about pre-orders for add-ons with a short shelf life going forward (breads, spreads, etc.). We aren't quite sure if it's popular enough to continue, but will keep you posted with a decision soon.


New product alert! We've got single serve plain Stani Dairy yogurt. I was chatting with Kali from Stani Dairy recently and she shared how she enjoys it: "[Topped with] Olive oil, roasted red peppers, sunflower seeds and olives... the yogurt is mild so veggies can be dipped as is or in the savory mix.  I just add those items on top of yogurt and eat or I dip veggies, crackers or little toasts." Yum!


What's the Difference Between Escarole and Romaine?:




A Message from Randy:

The Unbagging:

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

Small:

  • 1 head of escarole

  • 1 head of romaine

  • 1 bunch of kale

  • 1 pint of peas

  • 1 small zucchini

  • 1/4 lb. of garlic scapes

Large:

  • 1 head of escarole

  • 1 head of romaine

  • 2 bunches of kale

  • 1 small bunch of oregano

  • 1 pint of peas

  • 1/2 lb. of salad mix

  • 1 large zucchini

  • 1/4 lb. of garlic scapes

Caring For Your Share:

  • Store the zucchini in the fridge as is.

  • Store the garlic scapes and peas in plastic bags or containers in the fridge.

  • Store the kale and oregano in containers or plastic bags in the fridge. When ready to use, swish in cold water and spin out. If they wilt, trim off the bottoms of the stems and let perk up in cold water.

  • Use a plastic bag or container to store the heads of escarole and romaine in the fridge, shaking out any excess water and removing any bad leaves first.

  • Store the bag of salad mix in the fridge. Wash and spin out when ready to use.

LGF Cooking Club:


Last but not least is a special recipe from new crew member Ethan. Ethan and his family were members for years before Ethan joined our team this year. Ethan made this "stuffed escarole casserole" and OH. MY. Was it good! This is his recipe... you HAVE to try it.


Prep/cook: ~1 hour

*The last time I made this, I ended up with both a small and large casserole dish worth of food.

It reheats very nicely for leftovers, but consider reducing the ingredient amount if you want less food.*


Ingredients:

1 head of escarole

1 pound ground pork**

3/4 cup rice (I used Zatarain's Yellow Rice, any will do)

1 cup shredded cheese (or more! I used a blend of cheddar and mozzarella, use your preference!)

1/2 cup chopped onion***

1/2 cup chopped mushroom***

1/2 cup chopped broccoli***

1 plum tomato (diced)***

1/4 cup seasoned bread crumbs (I use 4c brand, any kind will do)

2-3 cloves chopped garlic

1-2 tablespoons of cooking oil (I never measure)

Salt & spices (to preference, I never measure)

I used the "Forward" spice blend by Penzeys https://www.penzeys.com/online-catalog/forward-seasoning/c-24/p-301/pd-s


Preparation:

Preheat oven to 400°.


First, prepare the rice. Again, I use Zatarain's Yellow Rice because it's easy, but any kind of rice will work.

Chop the end off the head of escarole and rinse, set aside for now.

Start to cook onions in a pan/skillet with oil over medium heat. When onions begin to soften, add garlic.

When the garlic starts to get aromatic, add ground pork.

Once the pork is mostly cooked, stir in chopped veggies, cover and reduce heat.


Briefly boil escarole leaves in salt water (4 minutes), then drain.

Once veggies are cooked down, add salt & spice and stir rice and seasoned bread crumbs into the meat and veggies, remove from heat.

Grease a medium to large sized casserole dish, spoon a portion of the meat into the dish and spread into a bottom layer.

Now, you can either make 'proper' stuffed escarole by taking the large boiled escarole leaves, spooning a thumb sized amount of meat onto it, and rolling the escarole, and placing it into the dish. Personally I'm too lazy to do that, so instead I layer it almost like a lasagna onto the meat in the pan, crumble a layer of cheese, and then another layer of meat, escarole, and cheese, repeat if necessary.


Cover and bake for 20 minutes. Then, uncover, set oven to Broil, and broil for 5 minutes to crisp up the cheese on top a little bit.

Let cool for a few minutes, then cut and serve. Or if you're like my mom and I, spoon some into little bowls and eat right there in the kitchen and talk about how good it tastes.

** Recipe can be made with any ground meat. Try with ground turkey for a lighter dish!

*** Recipe can be made with any chopped veggies, and any number of them. Use your favorites, get creative, for example try zucchini or yellow squash! Improvising while cooking is one of my greatest joys.



Thank you, Ethan!

Any more suggestions? Add them to our discussion on our 2020 Subscription Members page on Facebook. Click on the community tab and scroll down until you see the group. Request to join the group so I can approve your name. Can't wait to see what you decide to make this week!

Cooking Tip(s) of the Week:

How to Freeze Greens:

https://www.bonappetit.com/test-kitchen/cooking-tips/article/preserve-leafy-greens

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247 Waverly Rd. Shelton, CT 06484

laurelglenfarm@gmail.com

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