Journal Entry June 21, 2010

SO WHAT’S HAPPENING ON THE FARM THIS WEEK?
Happy Summer Solstice! Lots of photosynthesis is happening for sure!! The produce is going “gangbusters” as they say, after some recent rains and all of this hot sunny weather. The peas are growing plump (we’ll definitely have them next week), the beans are growing fast, and the broccoli is forming their flower stalks! It’s an exciting time of the farm season. Green tomatoes are forming on the vines, the potato plants are getting bigger, the lettuce heads are beautiful and juicy (can lettuce be juicy?), the basil is getting bushy, the cukes are starting to vine out. We are excited to give you this new kind of cabbage today – it is a napa variety called Bilko. Don’t worry, you can chop it and put dressing on it (like the maple/balsamic from last week) and it is delicious( we had it last night). This is a new cabbage variety for us and we love it – don’t worry about the little flea beetle holes that were created – they are still very edible. This cabbage will be around for a few weeks… Oh and those once a year treats, the beloved garlic scapes – these are immature seed heads to hardneck garlic that we grow. You can eat the whole thing – enjoy, because they will only be here this week and maybe next and then we have to wait until next year.

We were glad to see all of our member families last week and we are glad the CSA season is rolling. We mentioned our apprentice farmers in the last newsletter, but they bear mentioning again this week because all of their hard work and positive, thoughtful energy has made this growing season start stronger than ever! Their presence here is a real gift we are thankful for. We are also thankful to our working members who have been coming and helping, too- Fiona, Benjamin, Jackie, Gabriel, and Natalie, Diantha, and Gail. So, Thank you for being part of our farm! Peace, Adam Farris Christine Bourque, and Sadie Farris

WHAT’S IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK: Red Leaf, Green Leaf, Butterhead, and Romaine Lettuce Heads, Pac Choi, giant napa cabbage (Chinese cabbage) red or green kale, rainbow chard, cilantro, and Garlic Scapes!

EGGS FOR SALE
We have the pretty girls’ eggs for sale – these are free-range, certified organic chicken eggs that are brown, green and blue – with the brightest yellow/orange yolks you ever seen. The eggs are $5.00 a dozen.

RECIPES
Bok Choy originally comes from China – is high in vitamin C, beta carotene, folic acid and calcium, as well as many essential minerals and it’s a good source of betacarotenes, vitamins B2 and B6, folic acid, iron and magnesium, as well as calcium.Did you know…? 1 cup of cooked Bok Choy contains 15% of your recommended daily allowance of calcium – the equivalent of 1/4 pint of full fat milk.

How to store fresh cabbage and bok choy: in the fridge in a plastic bag: it should keep for a week or even several weeks. If you find a cabbage and the outer leaves look ‘icky’, just remove them and the inner cabbage should be fine to use. You can use cabbage and bok choy interchangeably in the recipes.

Napa Cabbage Salad

1 head napa cabbage
1 bunch minced green onions
1/3 cup butter
1 (3 ounce) package ramen noodles, broken
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 cup slivered almonds
1/4 cup cider vinegar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup white sugar
2 tablespoons soy sauce

Directions
Finely shred the head of cabbage; do not chop. Combine the green onions and cabbage in a large bowl, cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Make the crunchies: Melt the butter in a pot. Mix the ramen noodles, sesame seeds and almonds into the pot with the melted butter. Spoon the mixture onto a baking sheet and bake the crunchies in the preheated 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) oven, turning often to make sure they do not burn. When they are browned remove them from the oven. Make the dressing: In a small saucepan, heat vinegar, oil, sugar, and soy sauce. Bring the mixture to a boil, let boil for 1 minute. Remove the pan from heat and let cool.
Combine dressing, crunchies, and cabbage immediately before serving. Serve right away or the crunchies will get soggy.

Napa cabbage: Beyond slaw by Chris Perrin, www.sheknows.com
Looking for a healthy crunch? Need something to wrap, wok or roll? Have you tried napa cabbage? Napa cabbage is an Asian vegetable that resembles regular green cabbage, but is longer and oval-shaped. Napa cabbage has slightly more protein and fewer calories than regular cabbage and a unique taste like a mild celery or bok choy. Here are eight things you can do with this very versatile veggie. 8 Things to do with napa cabbage
1. Napa Cabbage Rolls Instead of using green cabbage, try some of the larger outer leaves of napa cabbage. Cut them in half and steam or boil them until they just turn soft and then fill with a mixture of cooked white rice and browned mild sausage or hamburger. Top with tomato sauce and bake until bubbly.
2. Quick Kimchi Kimchi is a spicy Korean side-dish, sort of like the hottest cole slaw you’ve ever eaten. Traditional kimchi can take several days to make. However, for a quick at-home version, combine a few cups of chopped napa cabbage, a tablespoon of sambal olek (an Eastern hot sauce), 3 tablespoons of rice wine vinegar, 4 sliced cloves of garlic, and a healthy pinch of salt. Stir well, chill overnight and then eat right out of the bowl!
3. Napa Cabbage Stir-Fry If you have eaten a Chinese dish with vegetables, you have probably eaten napa cabbage. Typically, they are white squares that look like they should be onions, but have not turned clear. To do your own napa cabbage stir-fry, peel off 20 to 25 leaves and cut off the leafy green sections until all you have is the firmer white stems. Cut the white stems into two-inch pieces. Heat some peanut oil in a wok, cook the napa cabbage for 3 to 4 minutes until it starts to soften, and then add your favorite stir-fry sauce. Cook until the sauce starts to bubble. Serve hot over rice.
4. Napa Cabbage Slaw Got a favorite cole slaw recipe? Try it with shredded napa cabbage. Napa cabbage slaw has a subtly different flavor and texture than classic cole slaw and is particularly tasty if you add fruit. For your next slaw, combine 2 cups diced mango, a finely diced jalapeno, 1 cup mayonnaise, 2 cups shredded napa cabbage, and 4 tablespoons rice or red wine vinegar. Refrigerate for a couple of hours or overnight and serve.
5. Braised Napa Cabbage For a quick and easy side-dish, add the cut up white stems of the napa cabbage to a skillet and cover them half way with vegetable broth, ground ginger, garlic powder, and a few teaspoons of soy sauce. Cook over medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes or until the napa cabbage becomes soft.
6. Napa Cabbage Spring Rolls Napa cabbage has a great crunch that’s perfect for spring rolls. Simply slice napa cabbage into thin strips and roll with cooked shrimp, rice noodles, and fresh basil in a spring roll wrapper. Serve with a dipping sauce of soy sauce, chilies and fish sauce.
7. Napa Cabbage Taco Topping Traditionally, tacos are topped with a healthy handful of lettuce. A better choice is napa cabbage, which is more flavorful and totes a crisper texture, which contrasts nicely with the taco fillings.
8. Napa Cabbage Soup Warm up with a hearty bowl of napa cabbage soup. Add a few cups of chopped napa cabbage to your favorite vegetable, chicken or beef soup; it will give your soup a lot of body and for fewer calories than most other ingredients.

Garlic Scape Ideas:
-You can add sliced scapes to any stir fry recipe. Slice and sprinkle over any pasta, or slice and cook them in almost any sauce recipe. Great in guacamole and fresh salsa, too. Chop & add to softened cream cheese. Add chopped fresh scapes when serving a light garlic soup; can also add them to buttered, french bread floated on the soup. Use them as you would green onions, they’re just better. Good in salads, on bruschetta, pizza. An excellent addition to stocks..

GARLIC SCAPE AND ALMOND (or any nuts) PESTO (Garlic scape pesto is freezable!), www.doriegreenspan.com

Makes about 1 cup
10 garlic scapes, finely chopped
1/3 to 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan (to taste and texture)
1/3 cup slivered almonds or walnuts (you could toast them lightly, if you’d like)
About 1/2 cup olive oil
Sea salt

Put the scapes, 1/3 cup of the cheese, almonds and half the olive oil in the bowl of a food processor (or use a blender or a mortar and pestle). Whir to chop and blend all the ingredients and then add the remainder of the oil and, if you want, more cheese. If you like the texture, stop; if you’d like it a little thinner, add some more oil. Season with salt.
If you’re not going to use the pesto immediately, press a piece of plastic against the surface to keep it from oxidizing. The pesto can be stored in the refrigerator for a couple of days or packed airtight and frozen for a couple of months.

Roasted Garlic Scapes Take the scapes and put them in a lightly oiled roasting pan, top with salt (kosher or seas salt works best but any will do). Put the loaded and covered pan in a hot (425 °F) oven for 30 to 45 minutes or until they are beginning to turn brown. serve as a side or main dish. Tastes like roasted garlic but creamier.

CILANTRO SLAW
5-6 cups
1 cup
1/4 cup
1 tbsp.
1/2 tsp. shredded cabbage
firmly packed cilantro leaves, minced
lime juice
each water and honey
cumin seeds
Salt and Pepper to taste
In a large nonmetal bowl, mix all ingredients together.

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