Blog/Farm Newsletters

Posted 9/7/2012 8:53am by Dave.

One common observation on the farm this year has been that everything has seemed a little early.  We had a mild winter, and days in April reached up into the 80s.  Apples were blooming, the trees were leafing out, we fretted over a frost killing our blueberry buds, and everyone agreed that spring seemed to be about two weeks ahead of schedule. In June the strawberries came in earlier than expected, and ended earlier too – and so did the blueberries in July.  Roy will often be taken by surprise by a patch of green beans that mature earlier than planned – but Nature seems to have little respect for a seed packet guarantee of 50 days till maturity. As for our August favorite, tomatoes, they also came in a little early, and seem to be on their way out earlier than we had hoped too.  In a good year tomatoes will keep on producing (slower and slower in the dwindling sunlight) until they are finally killed by a morning frost.  In a bad year they die earlier, victims of one of the countless tomato diseases that fester on cool foggy days.  This looks likely to be one of those years, but in better news the good parts of fall are also arriving early.  The crew has harvested over three tons of winter squash in the last two days, with perhaps half that much or more left to bring in.  The apples are ripening, the sweet potatoes will be harvested soon, and the nights are refreshingly cool.  Now if both the deer and the political ads could just “disappear” a little sooner than normal, I’ll be happy indeed with the quick passage of time this year! -Dave

 

   

Produce and Cooking Notes

 In the box this week: cucumbers, wax beans, tomatoes, sungolds, beets, fennel, bell peppers, hot peppers, onions, garlic, basil, parsley, and sweet corn.

 Everything today should be familiar to you by now: Our tomato crop is waning rapidly as the cold wet mornings have provided prime conditions for the spread of late blight which has plagued our region this year. There should be a good number in your boxes today– but some have been picked a little underripe and will hopefully survive better on your kitchen shelves than in our fields.

 

The fennel and red beets are much the same as last week’s crop – we had a surplus of these items! Red beets will be appearing sporadically all fall, but this is the last of the fennel.  I know these can be trickier to use than tomatoes and corn, but remember - not only are there recipes below, but also last week's recipes are still on this webpage. Finally, we have nice portions of sweet corn today, but with a warning: we did not have time to inoculate them all against corn earworm.  Most of our samples have looked and been delicious, but be warned that a caterpillar might be lurking in there.

   

***TURKEYS!***

 Thanksgiving Turkey Preorder is now open!  Reserve your Holiday Bird online by     visiting our Online Farm store/Holiday “Extras”.  Preordered Turkeys will be delivered     fresh the week of Thanksgiving.  (http://villageacresfarm.com/store/holiday)

 

Winter Share Signup!

  

Winter shares are now available – visit our webpage at http://www.villageacresfarm.com/winter-season-2012-13 for more information and to reserve your spot.

 

Sandra’s Moroccan Tomato Soup

From Gardener’s Community Cookbook

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
  • 2 lbs tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  • 2-3 tsp minced fresh chilies
  • 3 c vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • ½ c chopped cilantro leaves
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice

 

Heat the oil in a large pot.  Add the onion and garlic and cook over medium heat until wilted, about 5 minutes.  Add the tomatoes and chilies and continue cooking, stirring from time to time, until the tomatoes are collapsing, about 10 minutes.

Stir the stock, cumin, turmeric, salt, pepper, and cilantro into the pot. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes, or until the tomatoes are very soft.  Remove from the heat, uncover, and let cool enough to handle.

Puree the soup through a food mill or press it through a sieve set over a bowl.  Reheat briefly.  Stir in the lemon juice, if using, and serve. 

 

Beth’s Grandmother’s Pickled Beets

From Asparagus to Zucchini

  • 2 lbs beets
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 c sugar
  • 1 ¼ c white vinegar
  • 1 tsp whole allspice
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 stick cinnamon

Boil or steam beets until tender. Reserve 1 cup of the cooking liquid, then drain beets and let them cool enough to handle.  Peel, slice, and pack beets and onions into 3 pint jars.  Combine reserved liquid, sugar, vinegar, allspice, cloves, and cinnamon in a pot; bring to simmer and cook for 5 minutes.  Strain; pour over beets. Cool, cover, and refrigerate 24 hours. Makes 3 pints.

 

Tequila Braised Corn Salsa

From Asparagus to Zucchini

  • Kernels from 2 ears of corn
  • 3 tbsp tequila
  • 1-2 tbsp finely minced jalapeno
  • 2 tbsp finely minced green onion
  • 1 finely diced plum tomato
  • 1 tbsp minced cilantro
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Heat a dry skillet over high heat, add corn kernels, and pan-roast hem until they brown in spots, 3-5 minutes.  Stir in tequila, scrape up browned bits in bottom of pan, and boil until liquid evaporates. Remove from heat and stir in remaining ingredients.  Serve as a snack with chips or as a topping for grilled meat or fish.

Posted 8/31/2012 9:16am by Debra Brubaker .
I sat down to write this last week after an enjoyable evening with the Village Acres Crew. We gathered for dinner (as we have been doing on Thursdays throughout the summer) but this time we gathered to bid farewell to our summer intern Meghan.  Meghan has been a great addition to our farm crew this summer.  Not only has she willingly accepted any task, but she provided great assistance in making sure the extras email was sent out on a regular basis.   We wish her the best as she returns to Philadelphia.  There were other goodbyes said this week.  For those of us who get a little anxious in jungles, there was a joyful goodbye to the towering sungold tomato and cucumber plants that have been ruling the greenhouses this summer.  These greenhouses are wide open again, brimming with potential. In quick order the ground that they dominated will be blanketed with the first of the fall/winter plantings of spinach and mesclun mix.  We are also saying goodbye to our first field planting of tomatoes.  We are at the point of the season when we quickly try to remove underproductive plantings and return the fields to healthy stands of cover crops in order to build and protect our soil until next spring.   It is an exciting time to be so intimately engaged in the cycle of the seasons! -Deb

 

Produce and Cooking Notes

 In today's box: tomatoes, sungolds, red beets, fennel, bell peppers, onions, garlic, basil, parsley, sweet corn, and (for full shares only) zucchini and raspberries.

Everything today should be familiar to you by now: although we have not officially given out raspberries yet most of you have had a sample by this point.  Next week we hope to give them to Medium shares so that everyone gets a snack.  Our tomato crop is waning rapidly as the cold wet mornings have provided prime conditions for the spread of  late blight which has plagued our region this year. You do have a lot of tomatoes in your boxes today – but some have been picked a little underripe and will hopefully survive better on your kitchen shelves than in our fields.

 

The red beets in our box today mark the first off our main fall root crops to hit the scene.  I am very pleased with this planting of beets which are sizing up nicely.  Our many hours spend on weed control on these fall planting is really paying off right now.  It’s very satisfying to look out over long lush rows of carrots and beets.  There are two recipes for fennel and beets on the back of this newsletter if you need some ideas for how to prepare these items.  Finally, we have nice portions of sweet corn today, but with a warning: we did not have time to inoculate them all against corn earworm.  Most of our samples have looked and been delicious, but be warned that a caterpillar might be lurking in there.


   

Blood Orange, Beet, and Fennel Salad

Bon Appetit January 2012   

 

  • 2      medium red beets, tops trimmed
  • 2      medium golden beets, tops trimmed
  • 3 blood      oranges
  • 1      medium navel orange (preferably Cara Cara)
  • 1      tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1      tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1/2      small fennel bulb, very thinly sliced crosswise
  • 1/4 red      onion, very thinly sliced
  • Good-quality      extra-virgin olive
  • Coarse      sea salt
  • freshly      ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup      loosely packed fresh cilantro

Preheat oven to 400°. Wash beets, leaving some water on skins. Wrap individually in foil; place on a rimmed baking sheet and roast until beets are tender when pierced with a knife, about 1 hour. Let cool.

Meanwhile, using a sharp knife, cut all peel and white pith from all oranges; discard. Working over a medium bowl, cut between membranes of 2 blood oranges to release segments into bowl; squeeze juice from membranes into bowl and discard membranes. Slice remaining blood orange and Cara Cara orange crosswise into thin rounds. Place sliced oranges in bowl with the segments. Add lemon juice and lime juice.

Peel cooled beets. Slice 2 beets crosswise into thin rounds. Cut remaining 2 beets into wedges. Strain citrus juices; reserve. Layer

beets and oranges on plates, dividing evenly. Arrange fennel and onion over beets. Spoon reserved citrus juices over, then drizzle salad generously with oil. Season to taste with coarse sea salt and pepper. Let salad stand for 5 minutes to allow flavors to meld. Garnish salad with cilantro leaves.

Beet and Fennel Soup with Kefir

From Bon Appetit, July 2011

  • 2      tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup      chopped onion
  • 1 cup      chopped fennel bulb
  • 1 1/2      teaspoons fennel seeds
  • 2 large      (2 1/2-to 3-inch-diameter) beets, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 cups      low-salt chicken broth
  • 1 cup      unflavored kefir
  • Additional      unflavored kefir
  • Fennel      fronds (for garnish)

Heat olive oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add chopped onion, chopped fennel, and fennel seeds. Sauté until vegetables soften, about 5 minutes. Add cubed beets and stir to coat. Add chicken broth and bring to boil. Cover; reduce heat to medium-low. Cook until beets are tender, 18 to 20 minutes. Puree soup in batches in blender. Return to same saucepan. Whisk in 1 cup unflavored kefir and season soup with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Rewarm soup.

Ladle soup into bowls. Drizzle with additional unflavored kefir; garnish with fennel fronds.

Posted 8/24/2012 8:39am by Dave.

August seems to be fading into September very quickly this year – the mornings are cool, dark, and foggy, and though we have a few hot hours in the middle of the day the approach of fall feels inevitable. The crops, too, seem to be getting ready for fall – tomatoes are declining, but winter squash are ripening, and the carrots, beets, and turnips are popping up all over the fields. Rumors of winter are starting to drift through our daily gossip – apparently some esoteric jet stream effect is going to cover us in snowdrifts in six months? And we found black wooly bear caterpillars the other day as big around as a grown man’s thumb, not to mention the voracious appetites of our local deer and groundhogs. (Not really a sign of a bad winter, that, unless you think every Pennsylvania winter everywhere has been bad). And our crew is starting to dwindle, too (much to the chagrin of those of us still picking your beans). Steve and Marsha’s nephew Byron has already headed back home to start school, and our intrepid intern Meghan, who you may recognize mostly from her weekly extras emails, is also leaving us at the end of August. Perhaps they need to get back to their own homes to prepare for the long winter? Our perhaps the hint of fall in the air has stirred the wanderlust in their souls. The changing seasons can make us all want to pack up and migrate somewhere else, whether we’re farmers, students, deer, geese, or just regular folk not yet ready to stop eating tomatoes. - Dave


Produce and Cooking Notes

This week's box: Fruit (fulls only), zucchini, tomatoes, sungolds, bell peppers, hot peppers, kale, onions, garlic, eggplant, beans, and herbs.

Fruit - Full shares are getting a choice of fruit today: mostly canteloupes, but there are some watermelons and red raspberries available too.

Peppers of all sorts – Everyone is getting some sweet bell peppers today (mostly red and orange varieties), and full shares are also getting a few of the skinny red Jimmy Nardello frying peppers.

Hot Peppers – You should be getting a selection of hot peppers today, which will hopefully be contained inside a quart container so you don’t get them confused with the sweet varieties. The mildest are long, yellow-green Hungarian Hot Wax; the black, red, or green ones shaped like small cones are medium-strength jalapenos and Czech Blacks; and the small, skinny red ones are hot cayennes.
Kale – Here is a little taste of fall back on the menu. Most of the kale should look pretty good, although there may be a few damaged or yellow leaves in your bunch. If you cut those out you should have no problems; we hated to let a little bug ruin a whole big leaf.


Chard or Kale Enchiladas
- from Angela Brubaker

• 3/4-1 lb. chard or kale, chopped finely
• 2 cloves garlic, minced
• 2 medium onions, diced
• 1 tsp. cumin
• 1/4 tsp. pepper
• 1 qt. spaghetti sauce
• 14 oz. ricotta or cottage cheese
• 6-8 tortillas, flour or corn
• 1 c. shredded mozzarella
Sauté onions, garlic and stems from greens in olive oil until tender. Add cumin, pepper, and leafy portion of greens. Cook until greens are wilted. Add water if necessary. Take off heat and add ricotta or cottage cheese. Heat spaghetti sauce in separate pan. Spoon greens/cheese mixture onto tortillas and roll up. Place in 8x12 baking dish. Pour tomato sauce over enchiladas. Bake 40 minutes at 350F. Add mozzarella cheese. Bake 10 minutes more.

 

 

CSA Box Pasta Salad
– adapted from Simply in Season

• ¼ c. red wine vinegar
• ¼ c. olive oil
• 1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
• ¼ c. fresh basil leaves, slivered
• 1 clove garlic, minced
• ½ tsp. salt
• ¼ tsp. pepper
• 4 oz. rotini, bow ties or penne pasta
• 3-4 c. chopped bell peppers and tomatoes
• ½ c. olives (optional)
• ½ c. fresh parmesan or feta cheese
• ¼-½ c. fresh basil leaves, chopped
• 2 tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped

Mix first seven ingredients and set aside. Cook pasta, drain and rinse with cold water, place in large bowl and mix with 1/3 of the dressing. Layer veggies and olives on top of the pasta, sprinkle with basil and parsley and drizzle remaining dressing on top. Cover and chill 4-24 hours. Toss just before serving with cheese.

Posted 8/17/2012 9:06am by Dave.

August marches on and we find ourselves starting the second half of the Summer CSA season today! For many people the start of the school year feels like the end of the gardening season, but here at the farm we still have weeks and weeks of vegetables growing for you in the fields. Some, like tomatoes and bell peppers, will hang on to frost – not likely to hit us here for two months yet. While they gradually slow down and get lazy in the lengthening nights and cooler temperatures, those tasty tomato-family crops will keep on growing until disease or cold finally does them in. And of course, plenty of other crops are just coming in. We haven’t even seen the sweet potatoes or winter squash yet, of course, nor the broccoli. Fall will find us plenty of carrots, beets, radishes, and turnips, and the return of spinach and lettuce mix as well. All that is still off in the future, though – for now, just don’t let the school buses, college classes, and nights in the sixties fool you. Summer is still in full swing here at the farm and you should be eating tomatoes, beans, and bell peppers like any happy vacationer down at the shore. - Dave

2012-13 Winter CSA
Online Signup is open for our 2012-13 Winter Season. Register early to guarantee your share of the winter harvest. Check out our website for additional information about the share options and to register. (http://villageacresfarm.com/join-our-winter-season-2012-13)

TURKEYS!
Thanksgiving Turkey Preorder is now open! Reserve your Holiday Bird online by visiting our Online Farm store/Holiday “Extras”. Preordered Turkeys will be delivered fresh the week of Thanksgiving. (http://villageacresfarm.com/store/holiday)

 

Produce and Cooking Notes
Most of this week’s box should be easy to identify, but here are a few special notes on your produce.  This week's share: green beans, zucchini, bell peppers, fennel, garlic, onions, hot peppers, tomatoes, and basil.  Full shares are also getting eggplant, yummy peppers, and sweet corn; mediums are also getting Jimmy Nardello peppers.

Eggplant – After a strong early showing eggplant seem to be declining a bit. There are only enough for full shares today.
Peppers of all sorts – There are plenty of big, blocky, sweet bell peppers today. Everyone is also getting a mixed box of hot peppers, of various hotnesses – they should all be contained inside a quart container in your box, so if it’s in there, it’s at least somewhat hot. In addition, full shares are getting the small, orange, sweet, Yummy Snack peppers, and medium shares are getting the long, crinkly, red Jimmy Nardellos – which are a frying pepper and not at all hot.
Fennel – We have lots of fennel coming up in the future, so we decided to get a little bit of it in now. Fennel has a licorice flavor that some of you may not be too tempted by, but if you caramelize it like an onion it changes enough that you may change your mind about it.
Garlic – This year’s garlic crop is in and, in my judgment, super garlicky! Which is a good thing in my book, but if you disagree you could cook it a little longer than I did. Low, slow heat will mellow it out.
Sweet Corn - This week’s sweet corn crop was flattened by the recent wind/thunderstorm here at the farm. Unfortunately it didn’t leave us with a lot to pick from, so only full shares are getting it today.

 

Fennel, Zucchini, and Tomato Soup

• 1 large or 2 small bulbs fennel thinly sliced
• 1 large onion, chopped
• 8 fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
• 1/3 c. olive oil
• 6 cups chicken or vegetable stock (or water)
• 4 garlic cloves
• 1 c. white wine
• 2 medium sized zucchinis, diced
• salt and pepper to taste
• 6 tomatoes, chopped
• fresh basil chopped as garnish

Saute onion in oil until it becomes soft. Add the garlic and continue sauteing for another minute over medium heat. Add the fennel, zucchinis, tomatoes, and fresh basil. Stir well, reduce heat to low-medium, and continue to saute for 2 to 3 minutes, watching that it does not stick to the bottom of the pot. Pour the stock or water into vegetable mixture. Add the wine and bring the soup to a boil. Stir well. Cover the pot and cook slowly for 30 minutes. Add the salt and pepper, stir again, and simmer the soup for 10 minutes more. Serve the soup hot. Garnish the top of each serving with fresh basil, finely chopped.

The Best Green Bean Salad
- from One United Harvest

• 1 ½ lbs. fresh green beans
• 1 c. diced red onion
• 1 c. crumbled feta cheese
• 1 c. toasted walnut pieces
Snap beans into pieces, boil for 4 minutes and plunge into cold water. Drain and set aside.
Dressing:
• ¾ c. olive oil
• ¼ c. white wine vinegar
• ½ c. finely chopped basil
• 1 tsp. salt
• ½ tsp. diced fresh garlic
• freshly ground black pepper

Combine oil, vinegar, basil, salt, garlic and pepper. Shake and refrigerate. Keep all ingredients separate. Just prior to serving, toss beans, onions, cheese, and walnuts with dressing.

Frijole Mole (Green Bean Dip)
- from “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle,”

Steam 1/2 pound trimmed green beans until tender. Saute 1 chopped onion in olive oil until transparent. Combine in food processor:
• the steamed beans
• the sauteed onions
• 3 hard-boiled eggs
• 2 cups basil leaves
• lemon juice to taste (optional)
• yogurt or mayonnaise (as much as needed to
hold mixture together)
• salt and pepper to taste
Serve on bread or with crackers or corn chips.

Posted 8/14/2012 10:17am by Debra Brubaker.

Tomatoes waiting to be packed

Oh August- the crazy month when both day and night I am immersed in tomatoes whether physically or mentally. The tomato is a very special crop to me. As a teenager, my parents decided that tomatoes were a good crop for my sister and me to be responsible for. During our summer vacations from school, we were responsible for the trellising, picking, and packing of the tomatoes, and in return, the income generated from the tomato crop was used to pay for our tuition at our private high school (and later college). I am eternally grateful to the tomato for affording me many of the learning experiences I have had in life and for my parent’s creativity at teaching me to take on responsibility. I am also very grateful to all of the folks involved here at the farm who have been tirelessly in the past weeks to keep up with the height of the season.

Here’s a peak at what we’ve been up to this week:
- Harvested over 2 tons of tomatoes (for both our wholesale market and CSA)
- Weeded over 3500 row feet of winter root crops
- Renovated 3 fields that were in crops to prepare for winter cover crops
- Picked 500 lbs of string beans
- Mulched our new strawberry patch
- Irrigation, irrigation, irrigation…
- And much more…

We hope you enjoy the fruits of our labor, as I know we are.
~Deb

Dave caging tomatoesProduce and Cooking Notes

Box Contents: Watermelon, Sweet Corn, Herbs, Tomatoes, Onions, Garlic, Beans, Carrots, Cucumbers, Zucchini, Bell Peppers, Jimmy Nardello Peppers, Yummy Peppers*, Eggplant*, Endive.  (*Full shares only).

Many of the items in the box this week you have seen already, but there are a few new items for the season as well.

Sweet Corn- This is the first sweet corn of the season. Many of our early plantings drowned in the wetness of May, so we’re very happy these plantings are beginning to produce. Today’s ears are on the young side so they should be very sweet and tender kernels.

Yellow Doll Watermelon- A small but delicious variety of watermelon.  It’s by far a farm favorite and since they can break easily, you can often see the farm crew taken advantage of “mishaps” in the field while picking!

Garlic- After 4 weeks of hanging from the rafters of our machinery shed, the garlic harvest is officially “cured”. It will make its debut in your box this week.

Note on the Peppers: I want to remind you that the long red peppers (Jimmy Nardellos) and the bright orange peppers (Yummys) in your box are both sweet peppers. There are also some hot peppers (lighter yellow) peppers for those of you who are adventurous with spice.


Recipes:

Pico de Gallo (Fresh Salsa)
From Epicurious.com (Bon Appetit, July 200)

1 1/2 pounds plum tomatoes, seeded, chopped
3/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
3 tablespoons minced seeded jalapeño chilies (about 2 medium)
1 garlic clove, minced

Mix all ingredients in medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be made 4 hours ahead. Cover; chill.)

 

Amazing Endive Salad

Sauté a quarter of a red onion, sliced and a clove of garlic in olive oil until just browned. Throw in a head of endive, washed and torn into pieces, along with a tablespoon or so each of red wine vinegar and balsamic vinegar. Saute until just wilted and arrange on a plate. Sprinkle with freshly-ground pepper, grated cheese and a hard boiled egg, chopped.

 

Gazpacho
From The Farmer’s Market Cookbook

1 hot pepper
2 pounds ripe tomatoes, chopped
1 small white onion, chopped
2-4 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
2 tbsp olive oil
3 slices thick white bread, crust removed
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
¾ to 1 cup cold water
¼ tsp paprika
¼ tsp salt

For the garnishes:
1 small cucumber, diced
1 medium red pepper, diced
2 spring onions, chopped
2 hard-boiled eggs, crumbled

Chop the chili pepper, discarding the seeds and pith. Puree all the ingredients into completely smooth. Pass the garnishes around at the table.

Posted 8/3/2012 7:49am by Dave.

I’m writing this Note on Thursday afternoon, trying to get a head start on the Friday morning rush for Harrisburg and Selinsgrove deliveries. Our farm computer has gotten increasingly ornery of late, often stalling up for a minute or more at a stretch before snapping back to attention on whatever you’re trying to do. For a farmer with too much to do outside all the time, it’s not an easily tolerated situation. So the computer is off to a specialist in the morning and we are trying to get done what we can beforehand. Our farm crew has a lot of talents and skills, a great work ethic, a tolerably good sense of humor, and a fine touch in the kitchen, but on the whole we are not well versed in the workings of technology. Roy and Steve have a good grasp of machinery and can often fix a stubborn starter or bent driveshaft, but modern technology doesn’t seem to respond to the same treatment as our vintage tractor collection. (Where does one spray the starter fluid, for one?) Meanwhile the crew is hard at work harvesting the onions – no longer shall we pull up five hundred here, six hundred there, before each CSA day – now they are all in and drying down for the winter. Time to weed this afternoon, time to take care of the oh-so-close-to-harvest sweet corn, and the endless tasks of picking tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, and more tomatoes. The endless drama of clouds and sunshine, thunder and wind, geese and moonlight plays out overhead and its no wonder that a day or two can go by before I realize I need to check the farm email. Thank you all for your patience with we busy farmers and our slow, tomato-stained computer keyboards. - Dave

Produce and Cooking Notes

Basil – The intoxicating smell of fresh basil continues to fill up our greenhouses and our lives. We may also have a few other herbs in the morning – parsley or cilantro, most likely.
Potatoes – The last of our new purple Vikings.
Cucumbers – Cucumbers are trying to make a comeback, so a few for all today.
Zucchini – Another planting is coming in so zucchini are picking up a bit.
Hot Peppers – We will have a selection of hot peppers available today, from mild Hungarian Hot Wax to jalapenos to spicy red cayennes.
Eggplant – Only full shares are getting eggplant today, as supplies are scarce.
Beans –More beans than expected yesterday (although some are not so pretty), so full shares get over 2 pounds and mediums get a little over a pound. Beans are a summer staple, delicious steamed or lightly boiled.
Beets Full shares are getting beets today as we continue to harvest them.
Tomatoes –Lots of tomatoes for everyone today – you’ll get a mix including regular red slicing tomatoes as well as a selection of heirlooms.

Bell Peppers - A regular sweet bell pepper or two for everyone today.

Jimmy Nardellos –Everyone is getting these big, skinny, red peppers. They are not hot, but are deliciously sweet. We will not put cayennes in Friday boxes, so if you see a skinny red pepper it is a sweet one.
Yummy Peppers– These sweet little orange peppers are delicious eaten out of hand. We didn't have quite enough today, so unfortunately only full shares are getting them.


Fantastic Fajitas
- adapted from Simply in Season

• ½ lb. chicken breasts, sirloin beef or seitan (wheat gluten) cut into thin strips (optional)
• 2 slivered onions
• 3 large sliced peppers
• 3 sliced (lengthwise) summer squash and/or sliced portabella mushrooms
• 1 c. fresh cilantro leaves, finely chopped
• 2 tbsp. soy sauce
• 1 tbsp. oil
• 1 tbsp. chili powder
• 2 tsp. ground cumin
• juice of 1 lime

Mix ingredients from cilantro down and use to coat meat or seitan, summer squash and mushrooms. (Keep meat and veggies in separate bowls.) Let stand at least 15 min. Stir-fry meat until cooked through, and set aside while stir-frying first onions and peppers, and then summer squash and/or mushrooms. Serve with warm flour tortillas, shredded cheese, chopped tomatoes, salsa, diced cucumbers and yogurt or sour cream.

Pork Chops with Tomatillo Chile Sauce
From From Asparagus to Zucchini

  • 4 pork chops
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 3-4 finely chopped jalapenos
  • 12-14 tomatillos, husked and coarsely chopped
  • 1 ½ tsp dried oregano
  • 1 ½ tsp chile powder
  • 1-2 tsp sugar

Season pork chops generously with salt and pepper. Let stand while you prepare the other ingredients. Heat oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high flame. Add chops and brown well on both sides. Reduce heat to medium, transfer chops to a plate, and add onions, garlic, and jalapenos to skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mixture is saucy, about 20 minutes. If it is very tart, stir in sugar to taste. Season with salt and pepper. Return pork chops to the skillet, nestling them in the sauce. Cover and simmer until chops are cooked, about 10 minutes. Corn bread is a great accompaniment.


Green Beans with Tomatoes and Herbs
From From Asparagus to Zucchini

  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • ½ cup sliced onions
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp dried ground thyme
  • 1 pound green beans, ends clipped, cut in half
  • 1 sprig rosemary, leaves torn off
  • 2 medium tomatoes, cut in wedges
  • Salt to taste or 2 tbsp salted butter

Heat olive oil in deep pan over medium heat. Add garlic and pepper flakes; sauté until fragrant. Add onions, sauté until translucent, 3-5 minutes. Add ¼ cup water, the dried spices, and green beans. Stir, cover, and steam-cook beans until nearly done, 10-15 minutes. Stir in the rosemary and tomatoes. Cook very briefly, until tomatoes are warmed through and beans are done. Season with salt, or if you prefer, melt salted butter over the beans before serving.

Posted 7/27/2012 8:49am by Dave.

The rolling waves of thunderstorms continue to move through our little valley, sporadically enough that we are able to get plenty of work done! The tomato harvest this week has taken us all by surprise. We set out early in the week to plan for the CSA: lots of things to do, harvests to bring in, potatoes, eggplant, beets, and zucchini, berries, melons, cucumbers and basil. And probably to grab a few tomatoes along the way, maybe enough to toss a ripe red one or two into everyone’s boxes to complement their sungolds. Four hours later, we are all still knee-deep in tomatoes, running out of buckets, carrying them out by the ton, and wondering when we’re going to get to everything else on the list? Every year this moment comes and takes us like a red storm and we’re reminded of what a bounty farming can really provide us with. As July slips away we’re still trying to get caught up, a little, on the weeding and planting, so that we can stay productive into the fall, but the tomatoes keep knocking at our door. Like a particularly persistent salesman they have arrived and don’t intend to be delayed for long. So hopefully we are ready for them! – hopefully our crew knows their tasks and can work long hours together in harmony, bending, picking, sorting, packing, pound after pound, bushel after bushel, of fresh tomatoes. August, here we come!

Produce and Cooking Notes

Basil – The intoxicating smell of fresh basil continues to fill up our greenhouses and our lives.
Cucumbers – Cucumber harvests have fallen off recently but I think (as I write this) that we will have enough for everyone. Zucchini, on the other hand, are in a lull; you might get one as a surprise but don’t expect it.
Hot Peppers – We will have a selection of hot peppers available today, from mild Hungarian Hot Wax to red hot cayennes.
Sungolds – The sungolds continue to rise as reliably as their namesake.
Eggplant – Everyone can get an eggplant today, although some are admittedly not as big as others!
Beets A few weeks later than the carrots they were planted alongside, our summer beets have started to come in nicely.
Onions - The onion harvest continues to come in, so we should keep having them in your boxes.
Tomatoes –Lots of tomatoes for everyone today – you’ll get a mix including regular red slicing tomatoes as well as a selection of heirlooms.
Bell Peppers – Everyone is getting some bell peppers today, either yellow or purple sweet peppers. In addition full shares are getting the big, skinny, red Jimmy Nardellos, a sweet frying pepper (not a hot pepper!), and the bright orange Yummy Peppers which are a tasty snack for lunches or after work.

 

Community Tomato Canning Days! “Many hands make light work.” We’ll be canning whole tomatoes at the FoodShed on Wednesday, August 8 and Wednesday, August 22 starting at 9 am and would love for you to join us! Working together, we hope to be done by lunch time or soon after. Space is limited to four additional persons, but there is the possibility of adding more days. Purchase canning tomatoes from Village Acres, bring your jars and lids, and we will all work together on the large six burner stove to get our combined tomatoes canned in one fell swoop. Whole tomatoes are quick and versatile. Canned whole tomatoes make great pasta sauce, can be blended for tomatoes soup, added to stews, or chopped into a wintertime salsa. They are one of the most energy efficient ways to store tomatoes as well! If find there are more folks interested in community canning at a different time, let us know and we’ll try to make it happen. Register by emailing Julie at foodshed@villageacresfarm.com First come, first serve.

Luscious Beet Salad
– from Feeding the Whole Family Cookbook

• 4 large beets
• 1/4 cup pumpkin or sunflower seeds, toasted
• 1 bunch beet greens
• 2 scallions, finely chopped
• 1/4 lb. feta cheese
• 3 tbsp. olive oil
• 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
• 3/4 tsp. Dijon mustard
• 1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
• 1 tbsp. finely chopped fresh basil
Cut cooked beets into cubes. Tear greens into bite-sized pieces and steam lightly (30 seconds or less), if you like, though it’s not necessary. Squeeze excess water out of greens if you steamed them. Toss beets and greens with seeds and scallions. Shake dressing ingredients in a jar and pour over salad. Toss again and sprinkle cheese on top.

Easy Cherry Tomato and Cucumber Salad
From From Asparagus to Zucchini
1 pint cherry tomatoes
1 small cucumber
¼ cup rice wine vinegar
pinch of sugar
salt to taste
1 tbsp minced cilantro

Stem the cherry tomatoes; slice in half. Cut cucumber in half crosswise, quarter the halves, and slice. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and let stand at room temperature, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes or so. Serve at room temperature.

Panzanella
from The Farmer’s Market Cookbook

• 2 cloves garlic, crushed, peeled, and chopped
• 4 tbsp red wine vinegar
• 2 lbs ripe tomatoes, seeded and chopped, juices reserved
• 4 tbsp best olive oil
• 1 cucumber, chopped
• 1 ½ loaves day-old Italian bread
• 25 basil leaves, cut in strips
• 1 small jar capers, rinsed and drained
• 1 small jar anchovies, rinsed and drained

• In a mortar and pestle, make a dressing with the garlic, vinegar, tomato juice, and oil. Or chop all ingredients as finely as possible and mash them together.
• Tear the bread into bite-sized chunks and toast it lightly. Put it into a salad bowl and toss it in the dressing. Add the cucumbers, tomatoes, and basil. Scatter over the capers and anchovies and marinate for at least 1 hour. Season to taste and eat at room temperature.

Posted 7/20/2012 9:35am by Dave.

 July is moving on and August doesn’t seem too far off now, as tomatoes start to ripen, heat waves roll through alternating with thunderstorms, and harvest takes up more and more of our time. We have been getting a lot of thunderstorms here at the farm – mostly off-hours, late in the evening or sometime during the night – and the ground is getting soggy again. Although they slow down our work and throw off our schedule, the break in the 95-degree weather is greatly appreciated. Friday morning the farm felt like a whole new place, a far-off country where misty rivers roll through green jungle. The mountains were completely invisible in the distance –even little Meyer Ridge, a few hundred yards off, is barely visible in the morning fog – and we feel like we are in our own little kingdom. The tractors were quiet (they compact muddy ground) so the only noises were our chickens and the wild birds around the property. And the crew hardly seemed to mind the rain at all, staying out to pick tomatoes even after I told them we could find other work inside. I think they were trying to hold on to that memory of dampness so that they could use it during the next heat wave. And the tomatoes take us by surprise, as they always do – although the red wave comes year after year, it’s always amazing harvesting so many things. We are less than halfway through the summer, after all, and I’m sure there are lots of surprises still in store. - Dave


Produce and Cooking Notes
Basil – A little basil, a few sungolds, and some balsamic vinegar sounds like the start to plenty of delicious summer salads.
New Potatoes – Yesterday we finished digging up these beautiful Purple Viking potatoes, leading to much speculation among the potato-addled crew as to what Vikings and potatoes might possibly have in common.
Cucumbers – Cucumbers make a great and easy addition to salads and sandwiches, or don’t be afraid to quick-pickle small batches.
Zucchini – Zucchini are only for full shares today, as harvests have not been overly plentiful this week.
Hot Peppers – Meghan harvested a wild collection of hot peppers this morning, so we’ll be setting out a selection for folks to choose from this afternoon.
Sungolds – Full shares are getting another pint of these tasty little cherry tomatoes.
Eggplant – Eggplant harvests were down a little bit this morning but we still have one for everyone.
Canteloupe – Last week’s cantaloupe crush is almost over, but we still have enough for all of you this week too.
Onions - As we continue to harvest our onions, please excuse their dirty outsides. We really did clean them up from the field, but they probably need another layer peeled off.
Tomatoes – Lots of tomatoes for everyone today – you’ll get a mix including the little Belstars, the big purple Cherokees or orange Valencias, plus a few standard, slicer-style Celebrities.

Eggplant Burgers II
- from Simply in Season

• 2 tbsp.oil
• 2 tsp. wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar
• 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
• ¼ tsp. salt
• ¼ tsp. pepper
Whisk together in a small bowl.
• 1 large eggplant
Cut crosswise into ¼ inch thick slices to make 12-16 rounds. Brush with oil mixture. Place on grill over medium-high heat. Close lid and cook, turning and brushing occasionally with remaining oil mixture, until tender, 5-10 minutes. Remove from grill. (Eggplant slices may be cooked under the broiler or sautéed in a fry pan until tender, 4-5 minutes per side.)
• 8 thin slices provolone, Gouda, or other cheese
• 2 tomatoes, thinly sliced (or 4 large pieces of roasted red sweet pepper)
• 8–16 leaves of fresh basil
• freshly ground pepper
Place a slice of cheese on 1 eggplant slice, top with another eggplant slice. Top with 2 tomato slices or piece of roasted pepper, then 2–4 basil leaves. Top with third eggplant slice, then another slice of cheese. Top with fourth eggplant slice, then another slice of cheese. Repeat to make 4 stacks, add a grind of pepper at the end (optional). Place on grill, close the lid and cook for about 2 minutes turning once.
• 8 crusty rolls or 8 thin slices of sturdy bread
Drizzle balsamic vinegar or olive oil inside rolls or bread, toast lightly on grill (lightly rub with a cut clove of garlic over toasted surface, if desired). Add vegetable stacks and serve immediately. Or allow to cool, wrap tightly, and refrigerate several hours or overnight, allowing flavors to blend.

Summer Roasted Veggies
- from Simply in Season

• 8-10 c. chopped fresh veggies (potatoes, eggplant, peppers, onions, summer squash, etc.) cut in small cubes if hard like potatoes and larger cubes if soft like summer squash
• 4 cloves garlic, minced
• 2 tbsp. each chopped fresh basil, thyme, oregano
• 1/3 c. olive oil
• 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
• 1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
• ½ tsp. salt
• ¼ tsp. pepper

Whisk dressing ingredients together and toss with chopped veggies. Spread in single layer on a baking sheet and bake at 425 degrees until fork-tender, stirring occasionally. Serve over pasta with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese for a main dish or cool and add feta and chopped tomatoes for a salad. Leftovers make a great pizza topping!

Posted 7/13/2012 9:13am by Dave.

We're well into July now, enough that the Fourth has faded to a smoky memory and people have stopped asking what happened to June. Now summer seems to stretch off into a hazy infinity on every horizon. Children can’t remember what school was like, and none of us can believe that the land was recently covered with snow or that the vibrantly green leaves on the trees were not so long ago blazing red and orange. Even on the farm, where the seasons march incessantly onward and we are always thinking two or three months in the future, we seem to be stuck in time for a bit, or maybe poised at the top of a Ferris wheel waiting to slide down the other side. (By “poised at the top of a Ferris wheel” I mean weeding). It feels like we could wait here, weeding and watering, forever, but actually time is still marching on. Just yesterday we started to harvest garlic – after a few weeks of curing it’ll be ready for distribution, hopefully just in time for tomato season to kick off. Onions are also ready for harvest; you’ll see the first few fresh onions in your boxes today. Blueberries are declining, raspberries are increasing, and every day, even if we can’t picture the red-leaved fall foliage on the hill, we can see the tomatoes and bell peppers following the same trajectory – a little less green every day, and a little more red and beautiful. Soon the whole farm will be awash in color and taste! - Dave


Produce and Cooking Notes

Lettuce – The lettuce is just about done – you will see that today’s heads are pretty small and yet still desperately trying to bolt in the heat.
Basil – A little basil, a few sungolds, and some balsamic vinegar sounds like the start to plenty of delicious summer salads.
Carrots – Full shareholders are getting a bunch of summer carrots today, versatile, sweet, and tasty.
Cucumbers – Cucumbers make a great and easy addition to salads and sandwiches, or don’t be afraid to quick-pickle small batches.
Zucchini – We are well into the second planting now – you might see the small UFO-shaped patty pan squash mixed in with today’s zucchini.
Hot Peppers – The mildly hot Hungarian Hot Wax peppers were doing very well this morning, so we’re packing them into everyone’s boxes today.
Sungolds – These tasty cherry tomatoes, good on their own or in salads, are starting to really fruit well now.
Eggplant – We’re mostly getting Oriental eggplants, whose long cylindrical shape makes them easy to slice and portion, but the globe-style Italian varieties are also starting to come in.
Watermelon – So much for berries! Instead of a box of tiny fruit, this week everyone is getting a big watermelon and an almost-as-big cantaloupe. Make sure you have a watermelon – since they’ll be available for pickup outside your box at most sites.
Canteloupe – Not just for breakfast, cantaloupe are an easy snack any time of day.
Fresh Onions - These onions, fresh-picked Monday morning, should have a milder, sweeter taste than regular storage onions. Otherwise you can use them wherever you normally enjoy onions.
Tomatoes – The first of our tomatoes are starting to come in – mainly the tiny but oh-so-early Belstar variety. We’ll see bigger and more numerous tomatoes soon for sure, but enjoy these for the moment.

Recipes

Ratatouille Bake
- from Rolling Prairie Cookbook

• 1 tbsp. olive oil
• 3-5 cloves garlic, minced
• 1 medium onion, chopped
• 2 c. eggplant, peeled and diced
• 2 c. summer squash, chopped
• 1 green pepper, diced
• 2-3 medium tomatoes, chopped
• 2 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
• 2 tbsp. chopped fresh basil
• ½ tsp. salt
• 1/8 tsp. pepper
• 8-10 oz. frozen cheese-filled pasta (tortellini or ravioli)
• 4 oz. mozzarella, grated

Saute garlic, onions and eggplant for several minutes, stirring constantly. Add zucchini, pepper, tomatoes, parsley, basil, salt and pepper. Stir well and cook over medium heat several minutes more, reduce heat to simmer and allow to cook until veggies are tender and flavors are blended, about 30 min. While veggies are simmering, cook pasta according to package directions. Drain well. Lightly oil a casserole and line bottom with cooked pasta. Cover with hot veggies, top with grated cheese and broil until nicely brown on top.


Chilled Cucumber-Mint Soup with Yogurt or Sour Cream
Angelic Organics Kitchen (adapted from The New Moosewood Cookbook).
Serves 4 to 6

• 4 cucumbers, peeled, seeded, and chopped (about 4 cups)
• 1 to 2 cups water
• 2 cups plain yogurt (or 1 cup plain yogurt combined with 1 cup sour cream)
• 1 clove garlic, peeled and smashed
• several fresh mint leaves
• 2 tablespoons fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dried dill
• 1 tablespoon honey
• 1 to 2 teaspoons salt
• 2 scallions, finely chopped (about 1/3 cup)

1. Combine the chopped cucumber, 1 cup water, yogurt, garlic, mint, dill, honey, and 1 teaspoon salt in a blender or food processor. Purée the ingredients, adding more of the water until the soup is a consistency you like. Season with more salt to taste.

2. Transfer the soup to a large bowl and chill for several hours. Garnish each serving with chopped scallions.

 

Baked Zucchini Halves Stuffed with Wild Rice and Quinoa
Angelic Organics
Serves 4 to 6

• 1 large zucchini, halved lengthwise
• 1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa
• 1/2 cup cooked wild rice

 

• 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (about 3/4 ounce)
• 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
• 1/2 cup chopped onion (about 1 medium onion)
• 1 rib celery, chopped
• 3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs
• 1 teaspoon salt
• butter (optional)

1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.

2. Cut out the center from each half of the zucchini with a paring knife, being careful not to puncture the bottom or the sides; reserve the centers. Transfer the hollow halves, cut-side up, to a baking dish.

3. Coarsely chop the zucchini centers and put them in a large bowl. Add the quinoa, wild rice, and Parmesan. Stir until well combined.

4. Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and celery; cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in the bread crumbs and salt. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, until the bread crumbs are well mixed in and heated through, about 1 minute.

5. Add the bread crumb mixture to the quinoa/rice mixture and combine well.Stuff hollow zucchini halves with the quinoa/rice mixture. Cover with aluminum foil; bake for 40 minutes.

6. Remove the foil. If you wish, dot each half with a pat of butter. Continue baking until zucchini is very tender and the filling is golden brown, 10 to 20 minutes. Serve warm.

Posted 7/6/2012 9:17am by Dave.

A hot week on the farm but that is to be expected in July, and the weekend storms broke the humidity a bit.  The crew spent most of the Fourth picking berries, which I suppose is as good a way to celebrate our independence as anything else.  Blueberries are a North American fruit, at least; they were only introduced intoEuropein the 1930s, according to Wikipedia.  Their sweet taste, mid-July production, and beautiful foliage make me like them better as a “national berry” then their close relatives, the cranberries, which seem to have a lock on Thanksgiving celebrations.  Our other early July berry, the blackberry, has a certain “Don’t Tread on Me”-style independent streak that the early settlers would have appreciated, with its nasty and menacing thorns, but it seems blackberries are not at all an American original. In fact, the archaeological evidence (i.e., Wikipedia again) shows that Europeans have been eating blackberries for at least 2500 years (and who can blame them). Do we even have a national berry?  I was unable to find anything online, so I suppose a good nomination would get any one of them the nod.  Several countries do have national fruits, including Armenia’s apricots,Mexico’s avocados, and the fruit-loving citizens of Pakistan, who have taken the trouble to name both a national fruit of summer (mango) and one for the winter (guava). But here in America we have bigger things on our mind, I suppose, and would rather not associate ourselves with such benign specks of sweetness as berries, or favor one fruit industry over another.  One point for optimism: the fifth hit on a search for national berry on Google is a lecture by Wendell Berry, noted Kentuckyfarmer-poet and berry lover.  Hopefully as we all try to live more locally and seasonally, we’ll have more time to spend contemplating both berries and Mr.Berry.  - Dave

Produce and Cooking Notes
Lettuce – Today’s lettuce may be a little small; we’re picking them a bit earlier before the heat of the summer gets to them as much.
Basil – Basil is such a versatile ingredient! If you can’t find a use for it, you can always stick it in your pockets as an inexpensive perfume. 
Carrots – Our spring carrot plantings are starting to come in, having survived all sorts of crazy weather in the meantime.
Cucumbers – Cucumbers make a great and easy addition to salads and sandwiches, or don’t be afraid to quick-pickle small batches. 
Zucchini – The second planting of zucchini is starting to come in, so hopefully the declining first patch can bow out gracefully.
Hot Peppers – Our greenhouse plantings of hot peppers seem to be doing well, and you might get one of three types today– the cute purplish Czech Blacks, the small green jalapenos, and the long yellow-green Hungarian Hot Waxes.  The first two are comparable in strength; the latter are our mildest hot pepper and are similar to a spicy banana pepper – too hot to eat out of hand, but good for slicing into sandwiches or salads.
Sungolds – These tasty cherry tomatoes, good on their own or in salads, are starting to really fruit well now.
Eggplant – A big weekend for the eggplant left us with enough for everyone.
Blueberries – These berries are from a local farm and are unsprayed, although not certified organic.  They make a tasty topping for dessert or you can just eat them out of hand.
Tomatillos – These Mexican staples are most commonly used in green salsas, but they have a wide range of uses and the ripest ones (those in yellow husks) can even be tasty raw.



Summer Squash Quesadilla Stacks
– adapted from Simply in Season

• ½ onion or ¼ c. sliced scallions
• 1 tbsp. olive oil
• 1 clove minced garlic or a few tbsp. chopped garlic scapes
• 1-2 zucchini, cut into matchsticks
• 2 carrots, cut into matchsticks
• a few large handfuls of chopped greens
• a few sliced mushrooms (optional)
• 12 corn tortillas
• 1½ c. grated cheese
• slivers of basil

Saute onion for a minute in olive oil. Add the rest of the veggies and sauté 5 more minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Assemble four stacks simultaneously: start with a tortilla, top with a spoonful of veggies, some grated cheese and basil slivers and then another tortilla. Repeat layers, ending with a third tortilla, so you have four stacks. Bake at 400 for 10-15 min. Serve with salsa, sour cream and chopped, fresh cilantro.


Salsa Verde
from From Asparagus to Zucchini

• 1 pound husked tomatillos
• 1 pound poblano chiles
• 1 yellow onion
• 8 serrano chiles, stemmed
• 6 garlic cloves
• 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
• 1 ½ tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
• 1 tsp sherry vinegar
• 1 tsp molasses

Heat a gas grill or prepare coals for a charcoal grill. Grill tomatillos until soft and skins are slightly blackened (a dry, very hot cast iron pan also do this for you). Grill poblanos until skins are evenly charred. Place in a plastic bag and seal. Set aside. Peel onion and slice into thick rounds. Grill until soft and slightly blackened. Peel grilled chiles. Place all ingredients in food processor; pulse until salsa is mostly smooth but still a bit chunky. Serve with tortilla chips or as part of a Mexican meal.  Makes 4 cups.

Camp-Style Sunny-Side-Up Eggs with Sungolds
from From Asparagus to Zucchini

1 ½ tbsp butter
8 large eggs
12-16 quartered Sungold tomatoes
2-3 tsp chopped tarragon
2-3 tbsp chopped green onions
sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Melt butter in a nonstick pan over medium heat. Carefully crack eggs and add one at a time to cover bottom of pan. Cover and cook until nearly set, about 5 minutes. Scatter quartered tomatoes, tarragon, and green onions around the setting yolks. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately, straight from the pan. Makes 4-6 servings.

Fingerling Potato Salad with Sherry-Mustard Vinaigrette
from Bon Appetit (Sept ’06)

Vinaigrette:
• 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
• 1 tbsp sherry vinegar
• ¼ cup canola oil
• 1 tsp chopped fresh parsley
• ½ tsp chopped fresh tarragon
• Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Potatoes:
• 2 cups coarse sea salt
• 2 pounds fingerling potatoes
• 2 ¼-inch thick slices smoked bacon, cut crosswise into ¼” thick strips
• 2 small shallots, thinly sliced
• 2 hard-boiled eggs, peeled & chopped
• 2 green onions, thinly sliced

For vinaigrette, combine mustard and vinegar in a small bowl. Whisk in oil, then herbs. Season with salt and pepper.

For potatoes, preheat oven to 400 F. Spread sea salt in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet; arrange potatoes over salt, spacing slightly apart. Cover sheet with foil and bake until potatoes are tender, about 1 hour. Remove from oven, uncover, and cool to lukewarm.

Meanwhile, cook bacon in a medium skillet over medium heat until brown and crisp. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Peel potatoes, cut in half lengthwise. Place warm potatoes in a medium bowl. Add bacon, shallots, eggs, onions, and vinaigrette. Toss well and serve warm.

Tags: berries, July
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