Blog/Farm Newsletters

Posted 7/28/2015 12:13pm by Debra Brubaker .

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK (quantities in photo are reflective of a full share): Colored Bell Peppers, Yummy Snack Peppers, Jimmy Nardello Sweet pepper, Swiss Chard,Sungold Cherry Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Fresh White Onions, Red Beets, Tomatoes, and Red Watermelon, Basil, Parsley, Cilantro, Dill and Poblano (medium hot) Peppers. 

Pick up times and locations are listed below.  Please remember to return share liners and egg cartons! Also we happily reuse quart and pint mason jars. 
 
Extras for sale at Pickup today: Plums and canning tomatoes, as well as the usuals (chicken, eggs, honey, and olive oil).  

FARM/PRODUCE NOTES:

I'm sure that by now most of you have noticed that I'm making an effort to take a photograph of every week's share (see photo above) over the course of the season.  It has been a good project, grabbing a random box that has just been packed and laying it out on our table to display the literal fruits of our labor each week. The colors are shining bright the past weeks and will continue with that trend as pepper season arrived this week.  If you'd like to see photos of full shares from the first 12 week of the season check it out here.

While most of our crops are doing well, we did have a disappointing harvest of our short season onions this week. The access rain in June and early July caused them to begin rotting before we even started to harvest them. We saved out the best of these onions and included them in your shares this week, but admittedly they may require peeling off a layer to remove spots.  We wish they were better quality, but really didn't want to compost the whole crop.  We are starting to pull out our longer season onions as well, and hopefully these will fair better. 

We continue to have a bumper crop off our first planting of tomatoes this year.  We have included a good number in your share, but have many more that are ripe and need to find eaters.  We will have additional tomatoes available to select from at distribution today (perhaps you have a tomato deprived neighbor??)

 Recipe Ideas: 

As the peppers start hitting your share boxes, I would encourage you all to start experimenting with stuffed pepper recipes.  In my household, stuffed peppers are a favorite.  As I love poblano peppers, I often stuff them, but can easily accomodate the taste buds of my more spice adverse family members by using the same ingredients to stuff a bell pepper or snack pepper. Below are several recipes for stuffed peppers of different types. 

Poblanos Stuffed with Cheddar and Chicken http://www.finecooking.com/recipes/poblanos-stuffed-cheddar-chicken.aspx

Stuffed Red-Bell Peppers: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/stuffed-red-bell-peppers-106226


Pick up times and Locations: 

On-Farm: 229 Cuba Mills Rd., Mifflintown, PA 17059 3-8PM

State College: Friends Meeting House, 611 E. Prospect Ave., State College, PA,  4-6:30 PM

Lewistown: Community Partnerships RC&D Office, 23 North Main St., Lewistown, PA 17044, 3-7PM

Late Pickup info

Have questions? Call 717-348-4916 (Deb's Cell) or email csa@villageacresfarm.com

 

Posted 7/21/2015 12:27pm by Debra Brubaker .

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK (quantities in photo are reflective of a full share): Sungold Cherry Tomatoes, Blueberries*, Purple Viking Potatoes, Green Beans, Cucumbers, Squash, Heirloom Tomatoes, Salanova Lettuce, Head Lettuce, Basil, Parsey, Cilantro, and Hot Peppers. 

*Blueberrries are from D&S Produce (Adams County).  They are not certified organic, but the fruit has not been sprayed.  

The potatoes are a little gnarly looking due to the dry weather in May and some issues with proper irrigation.  Our next potatoes should look nicer.  


FARM NOTES:

Our fields are exploding with tomatoes.  Two weeks ago we picked a total of 5 flats of sungold cherry tomatoes over the course of the week; this week we will will likely easily top 100 flats. July brings with it impossible to complete task lists and times of high stress as we all work our minds and bodies to the max to harvest crops.  These are the days we dream about in mid February, which oddly, when they arrive make us idealize the cold and dark of winter.  I'm sure all of you are also busy with the height of summer schedules as well.  Let us all try to keep peace of mind and enjoy the best the season offers even as we feel a bit crazed.  Happy eating all of you! ~Deb

 Recipe Ideas: 

Need some ideas for using Heirloom tomatoes?  Here are some of my favorites

Gazpacho

Tomato Tart

Posted 7/14/2015 12:20pm by Debra Brubaker .

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK (quantities in photo are reflective of a full share): Parsley, Dill, Basil, Carrots, Heirloom Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Yellow and Green Zucchini, Orient Express Eggplant, Lettuce Heads, Blueberries* , Sungolds, Hot Wax Peppers.

*Blueberrries are from D&S Produce (Adams County).  They are not certified organic, but the fruit has not been sprayed.  

Pick up times and locations are listed below.  Please remember to return share liners and egg cartons! Also we happily reuse quart and pint mason jars. 

FARM NOTES:

This is my favorite box of the year! Not because it's inherently better, but because with the blueberries, the rainbow is completed in produce form! Bright colors and smooth shapes make for a visual feast before the real one, I think. Have some fun in your presentations this week, maybe a salad individually arranged on top of a lettuce leaf like artwork on each plate by any children or artists you may have in your household.

Heirloom tomatoes certainly contribute to the mix of colors, so I thought I'd introduce two new varieties we've got this year. At left is the Striped German, or the Bob Marley, as I like to call it. Besides the tie-dye it's got going on, the flavor and texture is superb. At right is one called Aunt Ruby's Green German, and you should know that it won't turn red but ripens to a faint yellow-green. Touch it to determine ripeness as you get acquainted with another delicious heirloom tomato. Happy eating the rainbow this week! ~Allison

 Recipe Ideas: 

I've been eating fresh tomatoes with salt and pepper for years, but this year, I've got an addition: ricotta cheese. I highly recommend thick slices of tomato each garnished with a grind of sea salt and black pepper and a dollop of ricotta cheese alongside toast for a quick lunch. 

 


 

Posted 7/7/2015 11:57am by Debra Brubaker .

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK (quantities in photo are reflective of a full share): Parsley, Dill, Cilantro, Chard, Heirloom Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Green Bell Peppers, Fresh Onions, Yellow and Green Zucchini, Orient Express Eggplant, Garlic Scapes, and the first Sungolds (full share this week- next week we will have enough for everyone hopefully).

Pick up times and locations are listed below.  Please remember to return share liners and egg cartons! Also we happily reuse quart and pint mason jars. 

FARM NOTES:

May was super dry, June was super wet, and we are crossing our fingers that here in July the weather will start include a nice mix of warm sunny week days followed by one gentle soaking rain every Saturday evening (preferably between the hours of 10 PM and 5 AM)- We can dream right... Luckily, our investments in high tunnels over the years help us mitigate extreme weather to sum extent, . Harvest is ramping up for all high tunnel plantings of tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, and eggplant. And in-spite of the wet cool recent weeks, the field tomatoes are starting to ripen.  The crops that are facing bigger challenges are the beans, corn, and melons which are all experiencing long durations of water logged roots. We expect them to pull through, but most likely will have decreased yield and vigor.  We are eagerly awaiting a break from the frequent rains- there are fall carrots and beets to plant, lots of cultivation urgently needed, and our boots would benefit from a day or two to dry out.  Here's hoping...! ~Deb

Note: If you see dry grass on the chard and or sungolds, we apologize.  We seed grass between our aisles to help with weed control and soil retention, but with the wet weather, when we mowed last, the grass stuck to the wet leaves.  A quick rinse should take care of it. 


 Recipe Ideas: 

The eggplant season has come in full force.  I know eggplant is one of those love/hate vegetables.  It sometimes requires a little more creatively to use, but I would argue is one of the best when prepared well.  Eggplant is a sponge for flavor so can be through in wide variety of dishes.  As summer time does not allow for lots of advance dinner prep here on the farm, I often resort to just broiling eggplant with salt and olive oil until it is a little crispy and then throw it in a stirfry of other vegetables.  For a plethora of simple eggplant recipe ideas visit http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes_menus/collections/healthy_eggplant_recipes


 

 

Posted 6/30/2015 11:06am by Debra Brubaker .

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK (quantities in photo are reflective of a full share): Eggplant, Herbs (Basil, Rosemary, Dill ) Garlic Scapes, Lettuce Mix, Kale, Lettuce Heads, Zucchini, Red Beets, Spring Onions, Cucumbers, and the first heirloom tomatoes (which will vary from share to share.) 


FARM NOTES:

I think we have all been singing it under our breath...rain, rain go away!  Luckily, we were ready and before it started really coming down, we pretty much cleared out the tunnel that holds our transplants.  Out went lettuce, melons, winter squash, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, and brussels sprouts all in one day!  We even got the protective covers on the melons before the skies decided to open up.  

Besides being a little miserable picking squash and cucumbers in the rain on Saturday, we did have a mishap on the farm.  About this time each year, we put the goats down near the big greenhouse to clean up the field next to it.  They do a great job of it; however, the temptation of the peppers in that greenhouse are just too much for them.  Last year they broke out of the fence and went in and ate some bell pepper plants and then moved onto grass in the field.  This year, a branch fell across the fencing and it looks like they spent the rainy night sleeping in the greenhouse and munching on the poblano pepper plants, which are Deb's favorites.  No one was happy...anyone want a goat? 

On the brighter side, we all enjoyed the beautiful weather yesterday while we harvested the bulk of the box contents.  The fresh beets are looking great this week.  If you haven't done it, I really encourage you to try cooking the beets tops. They would be great sauteed with the kale.    ~Jackie


 Recipe Ideas: 

A member recently shared with me that she eats her yellow zucchini squash with scrambled eggs in the morning.  I tried it, and it was great!  I sauteed some of the fresh onions, a bit of chopped scape and chopped zucchini.  I cooked my scrambled eggs, mixed the squash mixture back in, sprinkled in some fresh tomatoes, grated a little cheese on top, salt, pepper...now that's breakfast!  

The eggplant are kicking into gear, and if you haven't had them before, I recommend trying them grilled or baked with herbs (you can add in the squash for a veggie mix).  Just chop up some of those fresh herbs and mix them with a bit of olive oil and salt.  Chop up your eggplant (and/or squash) and toss with the oil/herbs.  You can cook them either on your grill, in the oven or in a non-stick skillet.  It's a great summer side dish!  If you are an eggplant veteran, I just tried an awesome Chinese Eggplant with Garlic Sauce recipe I found at http://thewoksoflife.com/2014/08/chinese-eggplant-garlic-sauce/.  I substituted fresh onions for the scallions and scapes for the garlic.  I also cheated and bought pre-made spicy bean sauce, 'cause I couldn't find bean paste to make the sauce as recommended.  I did thin it out a little with a bit of all of the other ingredients listed for the sauce.  

 

Posted 6/23/2015 12:11pm by Debra Brubaker .

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK (As pictured in photo- quantities in photo are reflective of a full share): Lettuce Heads, Salanova Lettuce Mix, Herbs (Basil, Parsley, and Dill), Carrots, Snow Peas*, Cucumbers, Garlic Scapes, Fresh/Spring onions, Japanese Eggplant (Fulls only this week).

*We asked our neighbor farmer Aaron Kanagy and his family to raise peas for us as peas are a challenging spring crop to grow in our clay soil. The peas today are from his farm and are certified organic. 

Pick up times and Locations are listed below. Please remember to return share liners and egg cartons! Also we happily reuse quart and pint mason jars. 

FARM NOTES:

Happy first week of Summer.  It's here, and with it brings what looks like a different share this week- More color, more weight, and an ever increasing variety of items.  Here on the farm we are swamped- both literally and figuratively.  Lots of rain and lots of work.  We are eagerly awaiting a dry spell so we can make more beds, but until then, we will have plenty to do.  The first tomatoes are starting to show some color, and the pepper plants are filling with little green peppers.  Green Beans are hanging on the plants, and sweet corn is pushing tassels.  Oh summer- you are filled with wonderful things! ~Deb

This Week's Extras: Cherries (from Hillside Orchard- see description of growing practices below), Strawberries (the last few), Frozen Pasture Raised Chicken and Eggs, Honey, Olive Oil, etc.

Opportunities for Fruit! This season we will be offering fruit grown by our friends at Hillside Orchard as they have it ripen.  They are just starting to get their orchard established, and we excited to have this chance. This week we will have some of their cherries for sale, and later this season, plums, peaches, and apples. Below is a description of their growing practices and goals:

Hillside Orchard
11646 Stage Road
McClure, PA 17841

Owned and Operated by Iddo and Linda Hostetler

For sale in order of season: cherries, plums, peaches, and apples

All fruit is grown using sustainable methods, with the goal of eventually using all organic
practices. Soil fertility is maintained with natural materials and manure. No herbicides are used for weed and grass control. That's all done by horse­drawn ground­ driven mowers and hand­swung weed whackers. No “restricted use”pesticides, which require an applicator license are used; though on occasion, “softer” chemical pesticides are applied. Dormant oil sprays, beneficial insects, neem oil and sea weed (kelp) are used for their plant health benefits and the suppression of insect pests. Harvests are made when fruit is fully ripe to provide our customers with the best flavor!

Our Goal:To produce quality, nutrient-dense fruit having acceptable appearance.


 Recipe Ideas: 

The zucchini are starting to really produce this past week.  Our eyes are still being trained to see the dark green fruit in the middle of the dark green bushy plant, and admittedly some of them went unnoticed for a day longer than ideal resulting is some larger zucchini.  Of course this provides the perfect opportunity to kick off the summer with zucchini boats for dinner!  Just cut those larger (or small) zucchini lengthwise, scoop out as much of the middle flesh as possible while maintaining a shell that holds form.  Cook down the inner flesh with herbs, spices, and other wonderful things (sausage, wild rice and feta, or any host of your favorite flavors), full the zucchini shell with the stuffing, and bake until soft.  Visit the site below to view the many variations on this theme and find a recipe that suits your palate.  

https://www.pinterest.com/explore/zucchini-boat-recipes/


 

Posted 6/17/2015 11:29am by Debra Brubaker .

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK (As pictured in photo- quantities in photo are for a full share): Kale, Garlic Scapes, Yellow Zucchini (Full shares only this week), cucumbers, Snow Peas*, Strawberries, Parsley, Oregano, Basil, Rhubarb, Lettuce Heads. 

*We asked our neighbor farmer Aaron Kanagy and his family to raise peas for us as peas are a challenging spring crop to grow in our clay soil. The peas today are from his farm and are certified organic. 

Pick up times and Locations are listed below. Please remember to return share liners and egg cartons! Also we happily reuse quart and pint mason jars. 

FARM NOTES:

It is amazing to me how quickly things can change- from dry to wet, from seedling to large plant, from cultivated to weedy and back again.   I am trying to train myself to not fret too long about one thing or the other, because with a little time and good effort, the situation changes.  Last week I was feeling overwhelmed that we had so many transplants that were desperate to go to the field- unsure we would get them in between the rains. Alas, by Friday, with the help of a very diligent crew, our hardening off tunnel (the inbetween greenhouse and field location for plants) was cleared out, ready to have a new round of baby seedlings moved out.  While it feels that we are just starting our season, already a majority of the summer crops are in the fields, and even some of the fall (winter squash, potatoes, parsnips, and more).  We are seeding our fall broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower and beginning to work soil for our storage carrots. We are putting our Asparagus and strawberry fields to rest for the season, as the cucumber and squash slowly take over the role of providing us daily harvest opportunities.  The tomato plants are growing by nearly a foot a week at this point, asking for more string and training as they grow. Life is never dull here, and for that and much more, we are grateful. 

This Week's Extras: Strawberries, Frozen Pasture Raised Chicken and Eggs, Honey, Olive Oil, etc.

Interested in a Chicken Share?: We will be offering Chicken Shares again this year.  If you are interested in one, please talk to Deb at distribution or email csa@villageacresfarm.com for more information.

Recipe: 

I know that we have been sending a lot of kale your direction this spring.  It is doing well in the field, so we continue to send it.  Many folks I know use it for smoothies or juicing knowing that it is packed with nutrients.  Another way to use it without making yet another stirfry is as an ingredient in Pesto.  Hopefully between the basil in the share today and perhaps some from your own window box or garden, you can make the recipe below. 

Kale Pesto with Toasted Walnuts

Yield: Serves 8
EPICURIOUS | NOVEMBER 2013 BY DREW RAMSEY, M.D., & JENNIFER ISERLOH FIFTY SHADES OF KALE

Ingredients

2 cups packed torn kale leaves, stems removed
1 cup packed fresh basil leaves
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup toasted walnuts
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preparation
In a food processor, combine the kale leaves, basil leaves, and salt. Pulse 10 to 12 times, until the kale leaves are finely chopped. With the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil. Scrape down the sides of the processor. Add the walnuts and garlic and process again, then add the cheese and pulse to combine. Toss with your favorite pasta and serve immediately.

Posted 6/9/2015 11:29am by Debra Brubaker .

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK (As pictured in photo roughly left to right- quantities in photo are for a full share):Cucumber, Cilantro, Basil, Kale, Chard, Red and Green Lettuce, Asparagus, Strawberries, and in front garlic scapes and scallions. 


FARM NOTES:

Although it's fun to be surprised by a vegetable making its first appearance in your shares, I like how, as a farmer, I know what's coming. Certainly there are variations on timing every year, like transplanting the hot peppers later because the greenhouse space wasn't available or planting sweet potato slips earlier because our supplier had them ready. But overall, if you follow a pattern from year to year, you can anticipate harvests of most crops with reasonable accuracy. Our pattern includes multiple successions of a lot of summer crops, so you might be surprised to know we're already planting the second grouping of field tomatoes before the first is even ripe, to ensure harvest all summer. Same goes with melons: we seeded the third planting of melons today, adding up to one planting in the field, one as tiny seedlings, and the last just oblong seeds in potting soil. ~Allison

This Week's Extras: Strawberries, Frozen Pasture Raised Chicken and Eggs, Honey, Olive Oil, etc.

Interested in a Chicken Share?: We will be offering Chicken Shares again this year.  If you are interested in one, please talk to Deb at distribution or email csa@villageacresfarm.com for more information.

Annual Strawberry Festival:  We have scheduled the this year's Strawberry festival for Saturday, June 13th from 3-6:30 PM.  Come out to the farm for some pick-your-own strawberrries, a hayride, and a general good time with your farmers and other CSA members.  We will have a potluck that starts at 5:00 as well so bring a dish to share.  We will provide a strawberry-centric dessert! Directions to the farm can be found on our website.

Recipe: Grilled Asparagus Sandwich 

Arrange on sliced bread, preferably sourdough or baguette, brushed with olive oil:

asparagus spears, broken in half, tossed with olive oil, salt and pepper, and grilled or sauteed in a skillet (thin spears are great for this sandwich)
garlic scapes, chopped finely
spring onions including green tops, chopped
ricotta (a few dollops here and there)
mozzarella (lightly applied), optional

Heat the open-faced sandwich on a grill or skillet until bread begins to crisp and cheese softens.

Sprinkle with basil. You will probably need to eat with a fork!


 

 

Posted 6/2/2015 11:25am by Debra Brubaker .

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK (As pictured in photo roughly left to right- quantities in photo are for a full share): Asparagus, Cucumbers (full shares this week), Spring Onions, Strawberries, Red and Green Leaf Lettuce, Parsley, 3 kind of Kale (Green curly, Red Russian, and Lacinato), and Bok Choy.

Pick up times and Locations are listed below. Please remember to return share liners and egg cartons! Also we happily reuse quart and pint mason jars. 


FARM NOTES:

I just got back a whirlwind trip to New Mexico- a place where I lived for 7 years prior to moving back to Village Acres (my childhood home).  It was a wonderful way to take a deep breath before the height of the season.  In the brief time I was away (4 days), so much has happened on the farm- strawberry season arrived in force, the cucumber harvest has started (with enough to give to full share members this week), sweet potatoes and next year's strawberries were planted, and some wonderful soaking rains fell on our yearning soils.  I'm very grateful to those who kept things chugging while I played.  I'm also grateful for the reminder that while it is important to be a good and attentive manager, sometimes just looking away and then looking back can really help one's perspective. ~Deb

This Week's Extras: Strawberries, Frozen Pasture Raised Chicken and Eggs, Honey, Olive Oil, etc.

Interested in a Chicken Share?: We will be offering Chicken Shares again this year.  If you are interested in one, please talk to Deb at distribution or email csa@villageacresfarm.com for more information.

Next Farm Breakfast:  Join us this Saturday, June 6 for our monthly farm breakfast from 8-11 am.  Farm fresh eggs, pancakes, omelettes, quiche and baked goods are on the menu.  Stop in, enjoy a meal and have a stroll around the farm.  We look forward to seeing you!  Proceeds support our community fund.


Recipes: 

We realize we sometimes throw some new vegetables or one's that may take some culinary creativity.  Here's a keeper for swiss chard,which is also great sauteed with just a little olive oil and garlic. I also find the epicurious.com site a great tool for finding creative recipes. Also, did you know we have hundreds of recipes on our website and they can all be searched by ingredient? Simply visit www.VillageAcresFarm.com/recipe and search away.  If you come across a recipe that you would like to share, please send it to csa@villageacresfarm.com and we will add it to this site.

Parsley, Kale, and Berry Smoothie

Yield: Makes 2 servings
BON APPÉTIT | APRIL 2012
Ingredients

1/2 cup (packed) flat-leaf parsley (leaves and stems)
4 kale leaves (center ribs removed)
1 cup frozen organic berries (such as strawberries or raspberries)
1 banana (cut into pieces)
1 teaspoon ground flaxseed

Preparation

Purée 1/2 cup (packed) flat-leaf parsley (leaves and stems), 4 kale leaves (center ribs removed), 1 cup frozen organic berries (such as strawberries or raspberries), 1 banana (cut into pieces), 1 teaspoon ground flaxseed, and 1 cup water in a blender until smooth (add water if too thick).

 


Pick up times and Locations: 

Tuesday

On-Farm: 229 Cuba Mills Rd., Mifflintown, PA 17059 3-8PM
State College: 
Friends Meeting House, 611 E. Prospect Ave., State College, PA,  4-6:30 PM
Lewistown: 
Community Partnerships RC&D Office, 23 North Main St., Lewistown, PA 17044, 3-7PM

Late Pickup info

Friday

Harrisburg Uptown:4017 Green St, Harrisburg, PA 2 PM (or when delivered)-6 PM Shares will be left in the screen in blue Porch.  

Harrisburg Broad St Market: The Millworks Farm Stand (formerly Harvest) located in the Brick Building of the Broad St. Market.  Shares can be picked up Friday afternoon 2PM (or when delivered)-5 PM , optional Saturday pickup during market hours (7AM-4PM).  Note that if picking up on Saturday, shares will not necessarily be refrigerated overnight. 

Harrisburg East- Front Porch of 3623 Montour St. Harrisburg PA. 2PM (or when delivered)-7 PM

Selinsgrove: Emmas Food For Life Restaurant 11 S Market St, Selinsgrove 2-6 PM. Enter the front of Restaurant and wait staff will retrieve your share for you. While the restaurant is open later in the evening we ask you come as early as possible in order to avoid the busy dinner time rush.  

Late Pickup info

Have questions? Call 717-348-4916 (Deb's Cell) or email csa@villageacresfarm.com

 

Posted 5/26/2015 12:08pm by Debra Brubaker .

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK (As pictured in photo roughly left to right): Rhubarb, bok choy, potatoes, swiss chard, kale, asparagus, oregano, cilantro, basil

Pick up times and Locations are listed below. Please remember to return share liners and egg cartons!


FARM NOTES:

This week's notes come to you from farmer Jackie and the letters T & W, for Transplanting and Weeding.  That's right, we are getting loads of good stuff out into the fields this week including sweet corn, fennel, lettuce and melons!  We have also started making the rounds on everything we have planted to keep the weed pressure down.  The garlic and onions were on the top of our list for this week, as well as some hoeing work in the carrots and beets.  I think that everyone on the farm has now taken a detour through the strawberry patch to get their first berry of the season, so it won't be long now folks!  I think the prize of this week's share has to be the kale, I know we had it last week, but I was in awe when I pulled back the cover for this week's harvest.  The chard is a close second in my book, but that kale was just too beautiful today.  

I am keeping bees on the farm again this year, and I'm sorry to say that last year's bees did not make it through the winter.  I had two larger hives I was hopeful about, but one seemed to have been attacked by yellow jackets late fall/early winter and the other looked like they succumbed to the cold.  We are starting fresh with two hives and they are doing a great job building up their colonies thus far. Since they are only first year bees, I will not be taking any honey off of them this year.  

Also of note, I have been working on beds for herbal teas again this year, but I way over seeded a few items!  We will be offering them for sale on the website and at distribution.  I mainly have Chamomile and Tulsi (Holy Basil) starts as well as a few Yarrow and Mint plant starts.  

This Week's Extras: Frozen Pasture Raised Chicken and Eggs, Tomato plants, Tea Plants, Honey, Olive Oil and more

Interested in a Chicken Share?: We will be offering Chicken Shares again this year.  If you are interested in one, please talk to Deb at distribution or email csa@villageacresfarm.com for more information.

Next Farm Breakfast:  Join us on Saturday, June 6 for our monthly farm breakfast from 8-11 am.  Farm fresh eggs, pancakes, omelettes, quiche and baked goods are on the menu.  Stop in, enjoy a meal and have a stroll around the farm.  We look forward to seeing you!  Proceeds support our community fund.


Recipes: 

We realize we sometimes throw some new vegetables or one's that may take some culinary creativity.  Here's a keeper for swiss chard,which is also great sauteed with just a little olive oil and garlic. I also find the epicurious.com site a great tool for finding creative recipes. Also, did you know we have hundreds of recipes on our website and they can all be searched by ingredient? Simply visit www.VillageAcresFarm.com/recipe and search away.  If you come across a recipe that you would like to share, please send it to csa@villageacresfarm.com and we will add it to this site.

Bruschetta with Swiss Chard & Pecorino Cheese (adapted from italianfoodforever.com)

Ingredients:

Crusty Italian Bread, sliced
1 Garlic Clove, roasted and peeled
1 Large Bunch Of Swiss Chard
2 Cloves Garlic, Peeled And Minced
3 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
3 Tablespoons Minced Sun-Dried Tomatoes (I Prefer Oil Packed)
Salt & Pepper To Taste
Dash Of Red Pepper Flakes
1/4 Cup Shaved Pecorino (or your favorite) Cheese

Directions:

Wash the swiss chard and dry it well, chop the leaves coarsely, and finely chop the stems. Heat the olive oil in a heavy pan over medium heat, and then add the minced garlic and cook just until fragrant. Add the swiss chard and cook until it is wilted and soft. Add the sun-dried tomatoes, and then season with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Mix well, and then set aside. Either grill the bread slices, or place under the broiler, lightly browning each side.  Spread a bit of the roasted garlic on each slice of toasted bread. Divide the swiss chard mixture between the slices of bread, and then top each with some of the shaved pecorino cheese.

 

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