CSA Summer Share 2014 - Week #8 (19 Feb/21-22 February)


EIGHTH WEEK OF THE SUMMER SHARE SWEET CORN!!! We HIGHLY recommend that you eat it tonight!  The sugars in the corn start to turn to starch immediately after picking. Melons –  We wait until they “slip” off the vine to harvest them - the plants way of saying they are ready for eating.  If you want to save them for later in the week, these store better in the fridge.  You can let them return to room temperature before eating. Sweet Capsicums – We pick these when they are "breaking".  If your capsicum is not fully red, leave it out of the fridge and it will finish turning in a few days.  You can also try putting it into a paper bag with a banana.

CRATES We have many CSA members who have more then one crate.  Please remember to leave your crate out on Delivery Day or bring them to the farm.  As we are so low on crates, the Farm Pick Up people need to bring bags to transfer their vegetables into as the crates need remain on the farm - Thank you!

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.  We envisage that many of the vegetables you are receiving this week will last for two weeks with careful attention to storing upon arrival. Although we do wash all the greens after harvest, we are washing to take the heat out of the plants and wash away some surface dirt, not to prepare them for consumption.  We also spray a seaweed/herb brew about every ten days.  While this will not harm you, it does have a taste. We do suggest washing your produce prior to eating.

WHAT’S IN THE BOX The following are the items harvested this week.  Items and quantities in your box may vary depending on your harvest day and the total harvest of each crop.  The boxes are completely governed by what is ripe and ready for harvest and how much of it there is.  We endeavor to divide the harvest fairly. 1/4 share: 5-7 items   1/2 share: 8-10 items   Full Share: 10-12 items

Carrots – 'Little Fingers' Chillies – To see the varieties we are growing and to identify what you receive, please go to our Capsicum and Chillies post. Cucumbers – We are growing several varieties of cucumber.  One is noticeably bitter.  Test your cucumber.  If it is bitter, peel it, slice it and place it in a colander with salt for 20 minutes.  Rinse and drain.  Rinse and drain.  Dress with olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Garlic – This is biodynamically grown garlic.  Sprayed with seaweed brews and biodynamic preparations.  It is full of trace minerals, strong and sweet. Lazy Lettuce – Bags of mixed lettuce leaves. Melons – Harvesting green flesh 'Edens Gem' and 'Green Nutmeg' and orange flesh 'Carmes de Noir', 'French Chantenais', 'Hale's Best' and 'Hearts of Gold'. Parsley – Bunches of curly parsley. Potatoes – 'Royal Blue' They have dusky purple skin and yellow flesh. Their flavour is slightly sweet, and they’re good mashed, roasted, fried or used in salads. Perpetual Gator Spinach – Large bunches for cooking Sweet Corn – For the best flavour and tender kernels, eat it today! Tomatoes –Field tomatoes are here! We are currently harvesting heirloom varieties ‘Black Russian’, ‘Marglobe', 'Roma', 'Tommy Toe' and ‘Ox Heart Red’. Zucchini–We have a new variety - 'Grey Zini'.  This is an Italian stuffing zucchini.  We are also harvesting 'Romanesco' and 'Black Beauty'.

Extras Dwarf Purple Beans – Great colour that does turn to green when cooked. Capsicum – We are harvesting ‘Purple Beauty’, ‘Emerald Giant’, 'California Wonder', 'Golden Cal Wonder' and ‘Corno di Toro’. To identify what you receive, please go to our Capsicum and Chillies post. We harvest the capsicums "breaking"- with some colour but maybe not fully turned.  If you leave these in your fruit bowl, they will turn fully red in a few days! Cherry Tomatoes – 'Sungold' Eggplant – We have begun harvesting the larger variety of eggplant 'Florida Market'.  This is the classic purple eggplant. Pimiento de Padrons –Delightful "sometimes hot, sometimes not" chilies that are wonderful fried as a Tapas style entree.  They have a lovey full flavour great for pizzas and stirfries too. These are rotated through the boxes.  We have lots of plants but the harvest has only just begun.  It might take awhile to get them into everyone's box. Rocket – Bunches of teenage size leaves. Summer Squash – 'Golden Crookneck'.  The Golden crookneck are sweet steamed with butter, salt and pepper. Grey Zini – This is an Italian stuffing zucchini.

RECIPE SUGGESTIONS Roasted Cherry Tomatoes with Quinoa and Feta Spinach and Chicken Curry Fresh Corn and Tomato Salsa And a recipe Heidi, one of our lovely volunteers who blogs at Apples Under My Bed,  found for Spinach and Ricotta Souffles.

FARM NEWS Late summer on the farm - The glasshouse is full again with the Autumn Brassica crops - broccoli, cauliflower, romanesco broccoli, brussel sprouts and kale.  The first of the broccoli plantings is already in the ground growing well and about four weeks away from producing heads.  With the cooler weather, we have seeded more bok choy.   We are preparing beds, direct sowing and transplanting the Autumn and over wintered crops.

Compost - Autumn is the main digestive time of the earth and a great time of year to make compost heaps.  We are making more windrows to be used in the next growing season (Spring).

We are harvesting the second planting now of Sweet corn - There are six plantings currently seeded with the last of the season still to sow. The melons in the second planting are ripening and the early watermelon are showing signs of being ready soon.

We have tried to fill the gap in lettuce plantings with mesclun, rocket and young Perpetual Gator.  There looks to be plenty of greens for salads.

Although the second crop of celery was tip burned on the extreme heat days we had weeks ago, it has continued to grow well and we hope to begin harvesting it next week.  There are still lots of carrots and beetroot in the ground with more being sown for Autumn and Winter.  Our first parsnip crop which was sown in October is HUGE as are the leeks.  We will begin to sow the Autumn turnip crop...not as many as last year but a great variety of salad turnips and stewing turnips.

U-PICK FLOWERS We have a large assortment of cut and edible flowers planted all over the farm.  CSA members are welcome to come during the farm pick up times and cut a posy and pick some edible flowers.

FARM PICK UP SCHEDULE To accommodate those picking up their Mountain View Farm milk, Farm Pick Up times are Friday afternoon from 2pm-5pm and Saturday mornings from 8am-11am. Please contact us if you need to arrange to pick your vegetables up outside of these times.

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Please note – Photo is of a full share box.