2014 CSA distribution #2

Finally, fresh spring produce! Regular, weekly shares start this coming week, after a two-week gap imposed by the cold spring. Perennial herbs will be a prominent feature of this share, plus it will include overwintered green alliums and the first spring-planted greens of the year; overall, the share will be reminiscent of 2013’s share #3 (also delivered in the 3rd week of May).

2014_share2_2Items like the radishes and lettuce above may have to be a last-minute decision, as they’re not quite ready and won’t grow very fast in the upcoming week’s cold, cloudy weather. Green alliums like the garlic scallions at center are a definite. Other crops for later spring shares are coming along nicely, like the strawberries and cabbages above. Those strawberry blossoms (and various other crops) will need some protection later this week against what’s pretty likely to be several nights of frost down in our valley.

PRODUCE

Garlic scallions After a year off in 2013 due to the 2012 garlic problems, we’re excited about the return of this early spring taste of garlic! These are young garlic plants (planted from heads that were runts). Chop/mince the lower stems and use as you would garlic. The leaves can be eaten too, but since they can be a bit tough, some may prefer to use the leaves for broth.
Green onions Tasty, overwintered green onions great for lightly cooking or mincing onto salads, eggs, stir fries, and more. These tend to have a stronger flavor than scallions. Entire plant can be used.
Pea shoots Probably a smallish amount; a nice topping for salad. Or toss them into stir fry at the last moment. We’ll pack these in the bottom of your herb bag.
Saute mix We call it saute mix because all of the greens can handle cooking, but this first, tender harvest could make an especially nice salad, too. Expected contents: spinach, arugula, mustard, mizuna, tatsoi, kale.
Kale We think the plants will be big enough to handle a light harvest.
Radishes (maybe?) Not sure if these will be big enough to harvest? If so, they’ll be cute little ones that make a nice salad topping. Greens are edible too; good sauteed.
Lettuce (maybe?) Small heads or baby leaf, depending on which planting seems most sensible to harvest based on growth between now and then.

HERBS

We’ll be doing 4 bundles per full share and 2 per single share this week. Check out the photos on our culinary herb page if you’re having trouble identifying a bundle you receive. Here are the expected choices:

Chives These are currently flowering; flowers make a nice garnish. Hopefully the flowers won’t be past their prime by distribution time…
Garlic chives Either type of chives makes a nice addition to salad dressing.
Tarragon The fresh spring growth of tarragon is always our favorite. Great in salad dressings.
Sage The plants recovered from the winter better than expected; though the branches died back, they’re put up an impressive flush of new growth anyway, so it is back on the option list.
Orange mint Excellent for tea, desserts, etc. Check out the post on using mint in beverages.
Kentucky colonel mint Excellent infused into a sugar syrup as a base for drinks, as well as for Middle Eastern & Mediterranean dishes. 
Mint surprise
If you want whatever variety is thriving at the moment, pick this. May include a couple of varieties that aren’t always abundant enough to offer by name (such as spearmint or chocolate mint). 
Oregano

Lemon balm Makes a nice tea, especially if combined with mint.
Catnip
Sorrel Some of it is bolting, but we think there will be a few plants worthy of harvest.

EGGS

From our pastured flock, fed organic grains and farm scraps, $6/dozen. Available for home/work delivery, or for pickup at our regular dropoff location. Order through the online survey.

GOAT MILK

We’ll be offering limited quantities of fresh raw goat milk this year, for direct delivery to home/work only. Our milk is NOT intended for raw consumption, but is an excellent ingredient for a wide variety of home culinary projects including cheese, yogurt, custard, cream sauces & soups, cajeta, ice cream, and so much more. Learn more about our raw milk sales policies here, and our dairy herd management here. All purchasers of raw milk must sign our purchase agreement. Milk will this year will be $7 per half-gallon jar, still cheaper than goat milk we’ve seen in stores (shipped in from California), for a far higher quality product.

EMAIL NOTICE

We have had a few issues with emails from our domain being blocked by certain providers, particularly Gmail. Please ensure that our address is marked as a safe sender in your email account, or contact us if you think you haven’t been getting messages from us.

FARM UPDATE2014_share2_1

We’ve been very busy seeding, transplanting, managing the greenhouse, weeding, setting up trellises, laying out irrigation lines, juggling temperature swings, preparing to transplant  summer items, eyeing multiple rounds of severe weather potential, setting up row cover for insect protection, scything lush growth in aisles, managing compost, and in all sorts of other ways staying extremely busy getting this large and complicated system underway for the year. We’re quite looking forward to some of the results finally heading out to members on a regular basis!

HOEDOWN PART II

We’re going to try the Hoedown event again this coming Saturday, giving members another chance to take part and help your farmers get through an important task. All the details in last week’s post will be the same, except the date (5/17). Even if you’re not up for the hoeing part, come out and see us to enjoy the music & setting.

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