CSA Summer Share 2012-2013 - Week #6 (5 - 11 January)


WHAT’S IN THE BOXThe following are the items in your box this coming week.  Some items and quantities 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 Beetroot – A bunch of assorted beetroot in every box. Bush Beans – We have finished the first planting of bush beans and moved into the second, which includes yellow beans 'Cherokee Wax'. The purple climbing beans 'Purple King' should be ready for their first harvest this week as well. Carrots – Big bunch mixture of ‘Scarlett Nantes’, ‘Cosmic Purple’ and ‘Red Core Chatenay’.  And a small bunch of baby carrots 'Deep Purple'. Cauliflower/ Broccoli – We have moved into another planting of broccoli.  We are finishing a cauliflower planting which has yielded beautiful and small heads.  The next cauliflower harvest will be in the Autumn.  The harvest will be divided up between the boxes. Celery – We have begun to harvest the celery 'Tall Utah'. It's flavour is intense and it is a bit stringy. Chilli - The harvest of 'Padron' chillies will continue to appear in some boxes. Cucumbers – We are growing long cucumbers and short cucumbers.  The shorter are sweeter and apparently "burpless".  This week each box should receive two/three  cucumbers. "Lazy Lettuce" –  We have thickly seeded a mixture of lettuces so that we can harvest mixed lettuce leaves when they are still young.  Although it has been washed and spun dry, it should be washed before eating. Onions - The onions this week are 'Red Burgundy'. Slightly sweet and very beautiful. The tops can be used too like you would a green onion. Parsley –  'Italian Plain Leaf' or 'Curly Leaf' Potatoes – Harvesting red skinned 'Desiree' or 'Sapphire', a spectacular purple potato with rich purple flesh that maintains its colour when cooked.  Makes the most striking mashed potato. Radishes – Every box will receive a bunch of radishes this week.  We had not intended for some boxes to have them two weeks in a row but the next planting is ready for harvest now.  If left for a week, they all split. The variety is 'Champion'. Rocket/ Silverbeet/ Spinach – We have trialed growing some baby rocket, silverbeet and beetroot greens.  We will be harvesting whatever is ready. These can be mixed into a salad or used separately.  They are all suitable to be eaten raw or cooked. Peas – The heat of Friday has finished the last of the peas for the summer share.  Heat changes the flavour of the peas and makes the powdery mildew spread rapidly.  Bye Bye peas.  Hello beans! Squash – The variety is 'Jaune Et Verte' but in Vermont we just called them Patty Pans.  These are delightful summer squash if picked when young.  We have added a recipe for them and will get them into everyone's boxes throughout the season. They are small, round with scallop edges and a light green colour.  Really lovely baked! Zucchini – Zucchini this week includes 'Nero di Milano' and 'Romanesco'.

NOTES ON WHAT'S GROWING Although we are very lucky to have a secure water source, the lack of a good rain is evident.  With some crops, there is a reduction in size and with others we are noticing damaged leaves.  Our irrigation runs nearly non-stop but sprinklers are just not the same as an even soaking from rain.  We will keep you informed of how the crops fair in the heat.  While so many growing descriptions of crops indicated that they like "full sun", I think that the sun here in Australia, especially on these intense days is scorching and many leaves burn.  Permaculture's placing of shade trees is a wonderful idea in Australia!  We have lost one lettuce planting to mildew...the combination of a variety with many folds and lots of overhead watering to try and combat the heat.  But luckily there is a baby lettuce planting that has grown wonderfully to fill in the spot.  We keep talking about the cherry tomatoes.  There was a very small harvest today but we are still not seeing any of the larger size tomatoes turning colour and not that many cherries. Next year we will start the first planting of tomatoes in a movable greenhouse to try and have tomatoes just a bit earlier.  If you are on our mailing list, you will receive a post about corn this week.  The first planting is ready for pollination!

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 We have received many meal photos and recipe suggestions from CSA members in the past two weeks.  It is great to see and hear about the yummy food that is being enjoyed!  Seasonal eating looks wonderful, sounds delicious and is very different from what we are seeing in the grocery store.  Please keep sharing your inspirations.  True seasonal eating has lost a 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 post meal photos on our facebook page so that others can be inspired as well.  We are also happy to include tried recipe suggestions.  Maybe an easier way to share these is to set up another facebook page for CSA members where you can post photos and recipes directly?  Any other ideas or thoughts?

DELIVERY With the heat really setting in, we encourage those who get their boxes delivered to leave an esky with ice blocks in a sheltered location.  We are happy to unpack the box into an esky so that the produce has a better chance to stay in good condition until you return home.

With the holidays finished, Tuesday deliveries are back on Tuesday.

CSA's (Community Supported Agriculture) Kirsten Bradley of Milkwood Permaculture wrote a great post on CSA's. http://milkwood.net/2013/01/01/new-models-for-awesome-community-supported-agricultures-csas/ Transition Farm is listed as one of 5 CSA's in Australia. As members, we think you are all very special for supporting an idea new to this country.  We love hearing what you think about being part of a CSA and how the service could be better catered to you.

RECIPE SUGGESTIONS Ottolenghi's Perfect Lettuce Salad with Radishes, Semi-dried Tomatoes and Capers Szechwan Green Beans Potato and Green Bean Salad Crunchy Salad

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