CSA Summer Share 2012-2013 - Week #11 (9 - 15 February)

WHAT’S IN THE BOXThe following are the items being harvested this coming week.  Items and quantities in your box may vary depending on your harvest day. The photo is of a full share.NOTES ON STORING THE HARVST Please check out our Vegetable & Fruit page on the website to find tips on maximizing the life of your veggies.

NOTES ON THE SHARE Basil – Small bunch in every box. Beans – We think the next planting will be ready for harvest sometime during the week...but unsure when. Beetroot – Harvesting 'Ruby Queen', Bulls Blood' and 'Golden Detroit' Broccoli – The planting of 'Marathon' is still producing a few heads...not many and not very big but you may find one in your box. Carrots – Bunch of ‘Deep Purple’, ‘Scarlet Nantes’ and ‘Atomic Red’.  The ‘Atomic Red’ are lovely carrots but their peel has a bitter after taste.  If you peel them, they have a taste almost like peppermint.  To learn more about the nutritional value of purple carrots, check our post Purple Carrots - The New Super Food. We have finished the second planting of purple carrots but they will be back in the Autumn Share. Chillies - The harvest of 'Padron' chillies will continue to appear in some boxes. If you would like any of the other chillies you have had in your box the past few weeks, please let us know. Otherwise we are leaving them to turn red. Cucumbers – We are growing long cucumbers and short cucumbers.  We are also growing a variety called 'Lemon'.  They have a lovely flavour and are yellow and round.  We will continue to divide the harvest. Eggplant – Please look at the eggplant post to identify ones you find in your box. We will continue to rotate the harvest. Garlic – Bulb in every box. Lettuce –  We will harvest 'Freckles' this week and 'Green Oakleaf'. Then moving into 'Lollo Rosso', a red leaf variety. Melons –  We have started harvesting what we can find in the first planting (see notes below). The honey dew melons in the second planting should begin to ripen soon.  We "slip" harvest the melons which means that we wait until the melon slips off the vine, the plants signal that it is ready to eat.  I tend to trust my nose, though.  When the picked end smells sweet, the melon is ready! Nectarines – White fleshed 'Goldmine' - we harvested another two trees and have about 300 nectarines! - Just a little taste of the stone fruit we are growing. Onions – 'Spanish White' is the variety for Saturday.  The onions are beginning to drop their heads, their skins are drying back, getting ready for storing.  We are harvesting the ones that need to be harvested and allowing the others to complete their drying off process. Parsley – Bunch in every box. Patty Pan Squash – The variety is 'Jaune Et Verte'.  They are scallop, small, round summer squash.  Delicious baked, grilled or stir fried.  We are rotating the harvest of these each week. Potatoes – We are harvesting 'Nicola' this week.  White skinned and white fleshed.  There will be no potatoes next week. Pumpkin – Maybe it seems a bit early for pumpkin but the 'Pottimons' are ready for harvest! These pumpkins are wonderful roasted with a bit of olive oil, salt and rosemary.  Leave the skin on as it is nutty and very tender. Rosemary – Bunch in every box. Spinach – Another planting of 'Perpetual Gator' is ready for harvest. This was sold as a spinach that withstands heat...it is actually a really delicate silver beet, wonderful raw and cooked.  I am enjoying the slightly lemony flavour which makes it so light and refreshing.  Works well with eggs, in salads and in filo pockets. Sweet Corn – We began the 'Ruby Queen' harvest on Thursday.  Saturday and Tuesday boxes will receive it this week.  Unsure what will be left by Thursday. Tomatoes – The harvest is increasing so expect some extra tomatoes this week. Zucchini – We will continue to divide the harvest to 'Nero Milano',  'Romanesco' and 'Di Flor'

NOTES ON WHAT'S GROWING We have harvested two more nectarine trees.  The fruit are small and delicious.  We are experimenting with how to store harvested fruit...as providing stone fruit is new to us.  The harvest was so ample though, so we will be sharing some more.  Hope that you enjoy them!

We rushed to get the first planting of melons into the ground, so that there would be melons in the summer share.  Even though they were thoroughly weeded, the grass on the new land was not completely tilled in and it re-sprouted.  The first planting has produced some glorious melons, but not that many.  We have been dividing the harvest.  The second planting is coming on though...completely weed free.  We are expecting to begin harvesting the honey dews first and then cantaloupe and watermelon!

The third and fourth plantings of sweetcorn are stunted.  These two plantings are in between 1 and 2 and 5 and 6 which are all looking great - Peter and I have no idea what has happened to 3 and 4.  There may be some small ears to harvest. Planting five is tasseling up well, though, and six is deep green and strong.  There may be a gap in the sweetcorn harvest.

The pumpkins are coming along really well!  Lots of new varieties, colours shapes and sizes! The 'Pottimons' were ready for harvest.  It just makes me think that we need to enjoy the greatness of summer left as the shadows in the evening are already lengthening.

This feels like a great time to let all of you know how much we have appreciated your support!  This is only our second year growing for others and our first year growing on this scale! We are not third generation market gardeners.  We learn through trial and error.  We could not be trying as much as we are without you.  Farming is a funny business, though - We have to wait until next year to incorporate all that we have learned this year. We will be sending another survey before the end of the Summer Share.  As a new business, we really appreciate any feedback you have!

ESKY'S Please keep putting out your esky's.  Peter is happy to put your vegetables in one to preserve the freshness of the food until you return home.

U-PICK FLOWERS We have cosmos, zinneas, scabiosa, fever few, snap dragons, calendula, nasturtiums, statice, helichrysums and many other flowers growing.  Every member is welcome to come and U-pick some edible flowers and a bouquet each week on Saturdays from 8am-11am.  If you have not been to the farm yet, this is a great chance to walk around, see your food growing and leave with a wonderful posy.

SEASONAL EATING - SHARING INSPIRATION Please keep sharing your inspirations.  True seasonal eating has lost its definition, due partly to the fact that the grocery stores and fruit and vegetable shops seem to have everything, all the time.  It is great to be a part of the re-awakening of eating with the season and I am enjoying compiling what that looks like for so many different families.

RECIPE SUGGESTIONS Tomatoes, Basil and Garlic - I love the simple ways of eating summer produce! Tabouli Quinoa, Roasted Veggies, Marinated Chickpeas and Feta Salad Beetroot, Feta and Almond Salad Corn and Zucchini Burgers

You can also search by key ingredient on our website recipe page for many more ideas.