Archive | July, 2010
31 Jul

We had a big group of Outward Bound participants out to help with the harvest this week.  They were a fun bunch of kids with lots of energy and willingness to participate.  This week was our biggest harvest of the season and the extra help was greatly appreciated.

In the Shares

Garden Shares

broccoli

cauliflower

cilantro

chard

garlic

redbor kale

romaine lettuce

sweet onions

pac choi

sugar snap peas

radish

spinach

summer squash

Fruit Shares

Peaches and Apricots

Sugar Snap Peas

Unlike English peas, you can eat the pod of this pea.  We do recommend that you string the pea before eating for best results.  Simply pop the stem off and pull the fibrous material down the pea.  These are great as a raw snack or put them in your favorite stir fry.

Here are some salad ideas to use your snap peas

With radish…

http://www.gourmet.com/recipes/adventureswithruth/2009/10/sugar-snap-pea-cheese-curd-salad

With radish and dill…

http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/september-2007-sugar-snap-pea-salad-with-dill-vinaigrette

Sugar snap pea soup…  Sounds yummy.

http://splendidtable.publicradio.org/recipes/soup_sugarsnap.shtml

Zucchini Casserole – you could also use up your yellow squash in this recipe.

http://simplyrecipes.com/recipes/zucchini_breakfast_casserole/

Eggs Florentine – A suggestion from our farm allstar team member Ray Mariani.  Trust him.  He’s Italian.

On a tomato.

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/eggs-florentine-recipe/index.html

On bread with hollandaise, with a nice video demo of egg poaching.

http://berrytravels.com/?p=919

An interesting pictorial tutorial on poaching an egg.

http://smittenkitchen.com/2008/08/how-to-poach-an-egg-smitten-kitchen-style/

Learn about the science behind hollandaise:

http://www.exploratorium.edu/cooking/eggs/recipe-hollandaise.html

Rocky Grass Fun 2010

We had a wonderful Rocky Grass vacation.  The weather was perfect; not too hot or cold and not a drop of rain.  We were all able to relax and have some quality summer fun with our family.  Thanks again to all the workers and volunteers that kept Weathervane running while we were away. Here are some pictures of the weekend.

We had a great relaxed time with our daughter.

The weather was perfect.  The view was gorgeous.

The music was great. Love those Infamous Stringdusters.

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Rocky Gracias

22 Jul

Its that time of year for us again.  We are setting out for our mandatory summer Rocky Grass vacation.  We buy our tickets around Thanksgiving and look forward to the break in our most hectic time of the year.  We rely on many other hardworking folks to make this break possible.  Thanks to our farm and home front friends Rafe and Lindsey for keeping everything organized and running.  Thanks to our great crew Karen, Sarah, Toby, Ray, and all other workers and volunteers. We really appreciate this opportunity for a little summer fun.

In the Shares

Garden Share

broccoli

carrots

dill

escarole

green leaf lettuce

scallions

spinach

summer squash

corn

Fruit Share

1 bag peaches

1 bag cherries and apricots

Escarole

That large head of really bitter tasting lettuce is actually escarole.  Before you through it out to the compost pile thinking it is too bitter to consume, take a look at some of these mouth watering recipes.  Escarole is a great soup ingredient.  The flavor mellows a bit when cooked.  Several sites I encountered recommend taking off the outer leaves as they are the most bitter.

Here are some more escarole tips.

http://www.cookthink.com/reference/2667/What_is_escarole

White bean and Escarole Soup with Rustic Croutons

http://www.finecooking.com/recipes/escarole_bean_soup_croutons.aspx

Another variation with carrots, fennel seed (why not throw in a bit of the fennel fern from last week), and though it is not in the recipe the picture looks like they included zucchini or summer squash.

http://www.tastebook.com/recipes/1106411-ESCAROLE-SAUSAGE-BEAN-SOUP

Not in the mood for soup.  How’s about some yummy salads.

http://kalynskitchen.blogspot.com/2009/03/recipe-for-sauteed-escarole-with.html

With corn and zucchini…

http://find.myrecipes.com/recipes/recipefinder.dyn?action=displayRecipe&recipe_id=1654647

The Benefits of Bitter Greens

Here is some interesting info on the benefits of bitter greens.

http://www.nysun.com/food-drink/bitter-ends/27613/

We’re on our way.  Pictures and stories for next week.

Radical Roots

17 Jul

Juniper went out to the garden with her Dad to check on what was ready for harvest this week. I love this series of photos.  When they came in the house she told me that she harvested some carrots for her breakfast the next morning.  Soon she’ll be bunching carrots for shares and market.  Hope everyone enjoyed the first of the carrots last week.  More are soon on the way, along with zuchini, peas, and beans all in bloom and starting to set fruit this week.  Here are some photographic garden updates.

In The Shares

Garden Shares

arugula

beets

cilantro

fennel

fresh garlic

kohlrabi

romaine lettuce

baby pac choi

shunkyo semi-long radish

spinach

scarlet turnip

mizuna

summer squash

Fruit Shares

1 bag peaches

1 bag cherries and apricots

Radical Red Roots

What are those red roots in the share?  Exhibit A

http://www.johnnyseeds.com/p-7311-shunkyo-semi-long.aspx

I am dreaming of fixing these with the tops on.  My idea…. Pull any yellowing leaves.  Cut the radish in half with greens so there are still greens attached to each half.  Lightly saute in butter and garlic or roast in the oven at 425 degrees drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with salt.  These roots have a nice mellow radish flavor and are great for raw snacking also.

Exhibit B

http://www.johnnyseeds.com/p-5781-scarlet-queen-red-stems-f1.aspx

Throw this turnip chopped or grated raw in a salad.  The skin is quite edible and adds a nice scarlet color to dishes.  Also great boiled, thinly sliced and au gratined (I think I created a new verb there), sauted or roasted.

Farm Community Celebration a Success

We had a nice turn out for our farm celebration last Sunday.  We toured the farm and then dined on a bountiful and delicious meal out in the vegetable garden.  Rita and Chris played there hauntingly beautiful Swedish Nyckelharpas for us. Check out Rita’s work with Swedish music at http://www.ritaleydon.com/home.html .   Thanks to all who could join us for coming.  We had a great time. Here are a couple of pictures from the event. Mark your calendars.  We are planning another farm celebration for the afternoon and evening of Sunday, September 12th.

Cherry Clafouti

I made a great recipe discovery for the celebration last Sunday.  I was attempting to use up some cherries and feature our eggs in a dish to share.  This recipe is from Simply Recipes.  I don’t think I’ve ever made anything I didn’t like from this site.  I did however scale back on the sugar in this recipe and it was still delicious and plenty sweet. You could also get creative with other fruit, like the apricots and peaches, in this recipe. http://simplyrecipes.com/recipes/cherry_clafouti/

Bulb Fennel

Here is a video demonstration  of a delicious looking fennel salad.  There is  a great tip on cutting bulb fennel for optimum tenderness.  I am assuming those beets are boiled, peeled, and chopped.  I think this would be delicious with some goat cheese as well.  

http://www.wonderhowto.com/how-to-prepare-arugula-fennel-and-beet-salad-209374/

Here is some general info on fennel uses and storage including some ideas to use that beautiful fern atop the bulb.

http://footprintsharvest.com/doc/Fennel.pdf

The Aliens Have Landed

10 Jul

This weeks share is full of several new offerings.  Carrots, scallions, napa cabbage, toscano kale, and the aliens, purple kohlrabi and daikon radish, are all new to the share this week.   As we harvested, washed, and packed the vegetables this week several folks commented on the alien like forms of the kohlrabi and daikon.  Apparently we are not the only ones who appreciate this.  Here is a slaw recipe using kohlrabi from a fellow alien lover. http://www.hungrycravings.com/2009/06/invasion-of-alien-vegetables.html Kohlrabi is also delicious peeled and sliced and eaten as a crudite.

And for more alien vegetable inspiration here are some fun and scary (though I think the pepper and hope the tomato- lemon is a Photoshop job) alien vegetables.

http://growingplantsindoors.com/13-alien-vegetables-found-on-earth/

Farm Tour and Community Potluck

Tomorrow, Sunday, July 11th we will have our farm tour and community potluck.  We would love to see anyone who can make it to the event.  It will start at 4:30 pm with a farm tour and then we will dine by the garden.  Please bring food to share and your own plates and table service.

In the Shares

Garden Shares

arugula

carrots

cilantro

daikon radish

toscano kale

purple kohlrabi

green leaf lettuce

napa cabbage

baby pac choi

scallions

Fruit Shares

1 lb cherries

lbs apricots

Apricots

Once again these apricots are just a touch under ripe.  Eat the softer ones first and then set the others on your counter top and soon they will all be perfection.   Here are a few ideas for consuming those yummy morsels as ingredients in recipes.

Last night Lindsey and Rafe made us a delicious pork chop dinner with apricot sauce.  They served the pork with brown rice and sauted kale with garlic.  Here is the recipe they used and some yummy looking variations.

Pork Chops with Apricot Sauce

Instead of the strained preserves called for in this recipe ,Lindsey stewed fresh apricots, adding a touch of sugar, and then mashed them up a bit.

http://www.forks.ca/pork-chops-with-apricot-sauce-014662.php

Grilled Porkchops with Chili Spiked Fresh Apricot Sauce

http://www.tastebook.com/recipes/927087-Grilled-Pork-Chops-with-Chili-spiked-Fresh-Apricot-Sauce

Coffee Rubbed Pork Chops with Apricots

http://beetsandbonbons.blogspot.com/2009/07/coffee-rubbed-pork-chops-with-apricot.html

Daikon Radish

Those long white roots in the share this week are daikon radish.  They are a milder radish great for eating raw or cooking.  I like them added to soups and stir fry or grated up in a fresh salad.  Below there is more information on the health and nutritional benefits of daikon and some recipe ideas.

Here is the traditional Japanese way to use daikon as a compliment to sushi.

http://www.bento.com/trt-daikon.html

Daikon is good for you.

http://www.mitoku.com/products/driedvegetable/Healthbenefits_dai.html

Here’s a simple refrigerator pickling idea for daikon and carrots and learn about Vietnamese Sandwiches, too.

http://battleofthebanhmi.com/how-to-make-banh-mi/pickling/pickling-daikon-and-carrots/

Ideas from a New York CSA including a recipe for kim chi from Seth at Hawthorne Valley Farm.

http://bedstuycsa.wetpaint.com/page/Daikon

Kale Yeah!

3 Jul

Introducing the Kale Yeah! Canvas Tote

We are excited to introduce our new canvas market tote.  Just delivered today, we hope these bags will be a hit with our CSA and market customers.  These are the brainchild of Seth and Karen with wonderful artistic rendering by Jared Jacob of Sunday Lounge,  http://sundaylounge.com/ .  It all started last season when our ears were tuned to find a good farm slogan.  On a market day that was particularly bountiful with all varieties of kale, as our market allstar, Maggie, was arranging all this kale, with great enthusiasm in her voice she uttered the beautiful phrase, “Kale Yeah!”  (Think H E double hockey sticks Yeah!)  Seth’s mind sprang into action.  That was it!  The farm slogan we were looking for.  This statement along with Karen’s urging that Weathervane should be promoting sustainable bag culture prompted a collective effort to get this slogan on a bag.   You may have already noticed a new look to our egg cartons, business cards, and blog.  Now we have these great market bags.  Soon you will also see changes on our website, as well as stylish Weathervane Farm shirts and hats.  Kudos to Jared Jacob for all his creative talents.  We are so pleased with our new look.

What do I love about “Kale Yeah!” ?  Here at 8,000 ft we are blessed with the ability to grow amazing kale and other cool weather crops all season long.  Now I know kale gets a bum rap sometimes, it is a bit of a garden underdog, but it is so nutritious and delicious.  It is real food that keeps your body working.  Kale is worth getting excited about, even enthusiastic over.  This bag is a celebration of kale, an ode to kale.

So how do you get one of these spiffy bags you may ask?  There are two main outlets.  The bags will be available at both the Salida and Buena Vista  farmers markets and at the farm on pick-up days.  They are $15 ea.

TOP 10 REASONS YOU SHOULD HAVE THIS BAG (in no particular order)

  1. When you pick-up your share from the farm or market put the contents of your box into the bag and leave that pesky box with us.
  2. Do you have a friend in a different place who also participates in a CSA and you commiserate about all the kale you get in your shares and what you have found to do with all this kale?  This is the perfect gift for a fellow kale aficionado.
  3. Wear this work of art and show your local farm spirit.
  4. They make great souvenirs.
  5. Help to start a conversation about your love of kale.  Come out of the kale lovers closet.  It’s here, it’s kale, get used to it!
  6. Tote things everywhere…the pool, babysitter, preschool, river, park, camping, etc.,etc.
  7. Eliminate plastic bags from your shopping experiences.
  8. Support local art and a cool company that uses recycled canvas and fair trade, fair wage labor.
  9. They are classic, legendary, a Weathervane Farm tradition.  Just kidding!  But think..they could be all that 20 years from now.
  10. Just look at these happy faces with their new Kale Yeah! totes.


Hail to the Chard

First off a thanks to the rain makers for sending us some great moisture this week.  Down by the creek with plenty of irrigation water I was starting to take for granted how dry our area was getting.  Hopefully the recent rain is helping to nourish our landscape and decrease the fire danger.

Monday’s storm was great for the moisture, but we could have done without the slushy hail.    The chard and the spinach were the hardest hit in the storm and so did not make their scheduled appearance in the shares, but after a therapeutic trimming they will be back on track soon.  Everything else was okay.  You may notice a few unexpected holes in things, especially the more tender leaved items.  Everything should grow out of the damage and be back to normal soon.

Hail damaged chard. Now on the road to recovery.

IN THE SHARES

Garden Shares

arugula

cilantro

garlic (fresh from the Western Slope)

kale yeah!- winterbor

red leaf lettuce

French breakfast radish

Easter egg radish

salad turnips

red mizuna

Fruit Shares

cherries and apricots

(For best results, allow your apricots to ripen slightly on the counter in a paper bag. )

Coming Soon to the Shares

Zucchini from the Western Slope next week. Ours from the garden not far behind.

Next Week

zucchini

2-3 Weeks

Peaches, corn, tomatoes and zucchini.

Farm Tour and Community Potluck

Please join us Next Sunday, July 11th at 4:30pm join us for a community potluck and farm tour.  Bring something to share and your own plate and silverware.  I will send out details for parking and specific location later this week via email.

Bring Back, Bring Back, Bring Back Your Boxes to Me, to Me

Just a quick reminder that we can reuse the wax share boxes. Please return them to us at the farm or farmers market.  Or as suggested above, you can transfer your box contents to a spiffy tote bag and leave the box with us.

Pasture Raised Chicken

Our first chicken harvest is slated for next Thursday, the 8th of July.  Our goal is to know where all of the chicken is going before our harvest date so we can get the chicken from the farm to the customer on harvest day.  If anyone is interested in getting fresh chicken ready for the roasting pan or freezer next Thursday, please contact us via email (info@weathervanefarmbv.com) or phone (207-2287) for more information.  This is the first of several harvests we will have on the farm this season.  If you are interested in fresh chicken throughout the season please send in or drop by the reservation form printable from this link   http://www.weathervanefarmbv.com/pdf/poultry_reservation_form.pdf and then we will keep you updated as harvest dates come up.

Recipe and Photo Inspiration

New to the share this week are white salad turnips, kale, french breakfast radishes, winterbor kale, red leaf lettuce and fresh garlic.

For a beautiful look at many of them check out Golden Earthworm Organic Farm website:

Salad Turnips

http://www.goldenearthworm.com/crops/2009/6/2/turnips-white-salad.html

French Breakfast Radish

http://www.goldenearthworm.com/crops/2009/6/2/radishes-french-breakfast.html

And then enjoy navigating their site for more amazing photographs.  They sure do make all that produce look as delicious as it is.  And they provide great storage tips too.

Butter Braised Turnips Recipe

My favorite way to eat the white salad turnips is to just eat them like an apple.  They are so sweet and succulent.  They are also a nice addition to fresh salads.  Just chop any way you like and throw them in.  They are also nice sliced thinly and salted slightly especially if you are enjoying them with a nice cold beer after a long day working in the yard.  Cooking changes the flavor just a little but this recipe also looks delicious. 

http://gardenofeatingblog.blogspot.com/2009/01/eatwell-recipe-2-butter-braised-new.html

Enjoy your fruits and vegetables and have a great holiday weekend.