CSA Summer Share 2012-2013 - Week #12(16 - 22 February)

WHAT’S IN THE BOX The 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 HARVEST 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 bunches. Beans – We are harvesting bush beans 'Strike' (green), 'Cherokee Wax' (yellow) and 'Royal Burgundy' (purple). Capsicum – We have begun harvesting "breaking" capsicums. These are green or purple capsicums that have started to turn to red.  There are many posts online which talk about how to continue to turn the capsicum red...on your kitchen counter or in a bag with a banana.  We are harvesting them "breaking" to keep the plant producing as they should produce for another four-six weeks depending on the weather. Red capsicums contain high levels of vitamin C but come only when the plant has matured. Carrots – Bunch of ‘Red Core Chattenay’. Celery – We are harvesting 'Tall Utah' from the second planting.  More about lack of rain below...Celery is a very water hungry plant.  It is also very dense in micro nutrients. Rich in alkaline organic sodium (not sodium chloride), it is characterized in Ayurveda as having an “Astringent” taste.  Once ingested, celery works to support water balance in the body and functions to cleanse the mind and prepare for meditation.  Produce that is deficient in water, concentrates nutrients.  Just one bite will confirm that this celery is filled with nutrient goodness.  I have been making wonderful stocks with the celery and adding it to juice (A little goes a long way).  The stocks will be so welcome in the winter! Conventionally grown celery falls among the “Dirty Dozen” of foods high in pesticides. Organic stocks are a wonderful way to preserve the harvest. Chillies - The harvest of 'Padron' chillies will continue to appear in some boxes. There are 'Hungarian Hot Wax',  'Long Thin Cayennes' and 'Thai Hot' or 'Bird's Eye' being harvested.  Please look at the pepper post to identify. Cucumbers – Another planting has begun while the first two are slowing down. Eggplant – We are continuing to rotate the harvest.  Please look at the eggplant post to identify.  We have found caterpillars in the eggplant this week.  We are trying to be careful about what goes into the boxes and apologise if you received a caterpillar in your eggplant!  We have cleaned small eggplants off the plants to try and get rid of the problem.  Consequently, the harvest may be light for the next few weeks. Lettuce –  Harvesting 'Freckles', 'Oak Leaf', 'Buttercrunch' and 'Lollo Red'. Melons – Harvesting cantaloupes, honey dews and water melons...Perfumed sunshine!! I understand how the cantaloupes acquired the name musk melons. To learn more about the varieties we planted, check our heirloom melon post. Onions – Harvesting 'Spanish White', 'Long Tropea Red', 'California Red' and 'Hunter River Brown'. Parsley – 'Flat leaf' Italian and 'Curly Leaf'.. 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. Rocket – A small rocket planting intended for the next mesclun mix has grown quicker than the mixed lettuce and other greens.  Hence, we will be harvesting it this week. Silverbeet – Harvesting bunches of 'Ruby'. Spinach – We are continuing to harvest 'Perpetual Gator'. We will also be harvesting an English spinach "Bloomsdale'. Tomatoes – There is a bumper crop of cherry tomatoes.  The Romas are coming on and there are a few bigger ones too.  Expect extra this week as the cherries are so prolific! Zucchini – Harvesting 'Nero de Milano' and 'Romanesco'.

NOTES ON WHAT'S GROWING We will continue harvesting melons this week.  The melons are loving the heat. There are some really big watermelons ripening in the field!

The fifth sweetcorn planting is tassled and pollinating. Expect more corn in three weeks.

The first planting of turnips has germinated and the Autumn crops of brassicas (cabbage, cauliflower, kale and broccoli) are all growing well.  I love how gradually the seasons change...small hints of what is to come while still fully being in Summer!! The abundance of tomatoes and the sweetness of melons...

Rain...while Sorrento received some rain on Thursday morning...mixed into a thunder and lightening storm, we just received the lightening.  I am very thankful that none touched down as our farm is very dry.  We are losing four year-old established natives, having only received 10mls of water since November. The cool nights help, with some added dew.  This will be another very hot week.  We are hoping for a bit of rain as we would like to begin sowing cover crops to renew and feed the soil. Our irrigation is running non-stop on the food crops.

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.  Leave them in the shade and leave a note if you think he would not spot it.

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 Pizza...so wonderful with the tomatoes and greens and basil!  Here is a great dough recipe. Tabouli Quinoa, Roasted Veggies, Marinated Chickpeas and Feta Salad Cucumber, Tomato, Feta and Olive Salad Ratatouille Zucchini, Cherry Tomatoes and Chicken Kebabs

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