Hello dear friends and members!
It’s week 12! That means we are 2/3 way done with the regular CSA season. We are ALWAYS amazed at how quickly the seasons go by, and this one seems especially quick since we’ve had an unusually wet and cold August. Just this weekend we got 2 1/4 inches on the farm. Nothing to complain about, when you see the damage to the Gulf Coast from Hurricane Harvey, but enough rain to make everything muddy and hard to work with.
The extraordinary cold is hampering most of our hot-weather-loving crops like bell peppers, hot peppers, and eggplant. We have yet to harvest more than 20 eggplant in a week (and that’s from 150 plants!!!), and what we do get is extremely slug-damaged. These slimy little
friends foes are more than just gross to run into during harvest, they can actually do an incredible amount of damage by munching on everything they can reach–and they get around more than you would think. We’re hoping the bell and Italian frying peppers can get some heat and start to fully ripen to yellow and red, but we’ll have to wait and see. And, here’s hoping the eggplant can have enough heat this week to produce something before the first frost comes. YUP, that’s (on average) only about 2 weeks away…
Maybelle cutting up summer squash for dinner. This might be the last week of summer squash so enjoy!
What’s in the box
- Corn (2 small, 4 medium & full)
- Basil: purple and green italian
- Cabbage or Broccoli
- Tomatoes/Cherry Tomatoes (2 lb small, 2.5 lb medium, 3 lb full shares)
- Bell Peppers (1 medium & full)
- Hot Peppers: Hungarian Hot Wax (1 for full shares)
- Zucchini (1 portion for full shares)
- Cut greens (5 oz full shares)
- Celery (1 bunch full shares)
Recipes + Notes
Your Basil is a mix of purple and green italian types. Use in the same way you would green basil, they taste very similar. Some may be green with purple mottling (this is actually a genetic mutation of the purple variety). They make for a beautiful caprese salad.
Corn–Since there’s not a ton of corn this week, I wanted to find some recipes that use it in smaller quantities, or in combination with other items in your boxes this week. I’ve made a version of this corn custard back in the day when I worked at the Chicago restaurant TRU, and I think it’s really special. Going in a very different direction, this Summer Skillet makes the best of sweet corn, tomatoes, zucchini and basil. I’d be happy with it as a side dish, and even happier with it as a main course with a fried or poached egg on top! This vegetarian Asian noodle dish looks pretty quick and full of flavor, too.
Tomatoes–In case you’re done with the BLTs (?!?!?) and the Caprese Salads, maybe you want to do a little quick and easy preserving? Try a roasted tomato dish like this one or this one, and when it’s thoroughly cooled off, place it in freezer bags to enjoy in the middle of the rapidly-approaching winter. I’d be remiss to forget some salsa recipes, too! Here’s a Tomato Basil Salsa and this one is Corn and Basil and Tomato.
Remember your tomatoes come in all sorts of different colors. If your tomato is an odd color check for it becoming soft to the touch to tell if it’s ripe. We shoot for them being close to being fully ripe when they get to you, but some may be under-ripe and need to sit a few days (always outside of your fridge!), some might need to be eaten ASAP! Below are some pictures of tomatoes that are ripe in all sorts of different colors. Some are red, some are striped, some are yellow and some get a deep chocolate color when ripe.
If you get the variety in the middle (tye-dyed berkley is the variety) it’s red stripes should be deep red and the green stripes should be dark green.
Red Cabbage–Here’s a few fresh and new red cabbage recipes for you to check out:
Cabbage, Corn, and Tomato Salad–we don’t have cucumbers like the recipe suggests, but it looks fine without!
Purple Power Up Smoothie–we have several members who like to juice/make smoothies, and this one looks great!
Ginger Miso Cabbage Salad–this one would be great with a piece of grilled fish!
Peppers are coming on super slow this year. We are starting to give up on them turning from green to red, so we are starting to give them out as green peppers. Fulls will also get Hungarian Hot Wax hot peppers, a mild to medium hot pepper with good flavor.
Not hot on the left, somewhat hot on the right
Happy cooking, and all the best from all of us,
Heather, Brandon, Maybelle, Ted, Hannah and Michele
Sneak Peek at Next Week
- Sweet Corn
- Mustard Greens
- Shelling Beans