The fall CSA has arrived! It’s gratifying to have so many of you back for this final six weeks of harvest goodness, as well to welcome a few new members into our midst. Even with the havoc that last week’s torrential rains caused, the dry fields were so parched for rain that all that water was sucked right into the earth. It was incredible. A day after the downpour there wasn’t even any mud in the fields! We hope that the next weeks will bring just enough warmth that our final plantings of carrots and beets will be able to size up due to that big, long, drink of rainwater.
It feels like I’ve got lots of vegetable updates this week. The first is a sad one… as all Summer members know, the husk cherries were late and sparse this year. But the plants were covered with fruit, and we had great hope that they would ripen in abundance for the fall CSA. But the unexpected frost last Saturday put an end to that dream. We’re so sad, and are definitely planning for earlier husk cherries next year.
Your winter squash, on the whole, will be better if you let it sit on your counter for a few weeks before eating. With time the squash’s starches turn to sugar, and while every squash is different, on the whole all these varieties will taste better with a few more weeks under their belt. They’re beautiful and fall festive, though, so we give them out to serve as eye candy until the time comes to roast them up. When it’s time to eat, our CSA member Karen had a great idea, for those intimidated about trying to slice a hard winter squash in half: put the whole squash in the over for half an hour. The skin will become soft enough that you can slice right through, and then turn the halves face down and finish roasting. No more treacherous splitting that way!
If you get home and are confused between the ‘look-alike’ red onion and shallot (since the shallots are huge this year!), remember that shallots have more of a teardrop shape, and often have multiple large “cloves” linked together. In cooking, though, I usually use the two interchangeably.
Have a great week full of wonderful meals!
~ Reba, Bill and the HCF crew
Farm Potluck, Cider Pressing & Garlic Day!
Saturday, October 17th
Starting at 1pm and running until the cider has been pressed, the delicious food has been eaten, the garlic bulbs have been popped apart, and the relaxing has been had. Bring your apples to press, a dish to share, a chair or blanket to sit on, nimble fingers to pop apart garlic bulbs, and a plate/cup/utensils to enjoy it all with.
This gathering is inevitably one of our favorite afternoons of the year, and we know CSA members who consider it an integral part of their fall tradition. Come join! If weather is inclement we will send out an email and post on Facebook with the rain date.
Fall CSA Week 1 of 6: Shallots, Swiss Chard, Green/Red Pepper, Red Onion, Garlic, Carnival Winter Squash, Mesclun Mix, Beets, Big and/or Cherry Tomatoes, [Broccoli, Cauliflower]
Fall Week 1 Add-ons: Grain, Eggs, Fiore, Mushrooms, Cheese, Milk
Click here to see a picture of CSA member Josh B. with his beautiful basket of veggies!