Spring 2013 CSA: Week 5

Can you believe we’re nearing the end of our spring CSA? One week left! We’ve opened the summer session to current members, and we’ll open unclaimed shares for the general public next Friday.

We’ll start up the six-week summer session after a hiatus to let our summertime veggies mature. We’ll be in touch about dates as the time approaches, but we’ll continue to have Saturday pick-ups at the Quaker Meeting House on the corner of Prescott and Walnut Grove for the duration of the summer.

In the meantime, you have a beautiful box this week for your munching pleasure. Check it out:

Clockwise from top: mixed beets, kohlrabi, garlic, onions, Japanese minowase daikon, Tom Thumb lettuce, mixed kale and broccoli greens.

Clockwise from top: mixed beets, kohlrabi, garlic, onions, Japanese minowase daikon, Tom Thumb lettuce, mixed kale and broccoli greens.

  •  Beets: This time, it’s a mix of garden-variety red beets and hard-to-grow, sweet and succulent golden beets! We’re proud of ourselves for coaxing them into growing up for us this year. Our test batch has been successful, so you can expect a larger crop next year if all goes smoothly. Roast both varieties together for a roasted beet salad with a bright flavor.
  • Kohlrabi: We’re willing to bet this will be a new one for some of you. The fine, crisp, almost peppery flavor of fresh kohlrabi is one of a kind. Coarsely chop the fleshy, bulb-shaped part (which actually grows above the ground) into a salad, saute the chopped bulb in olive oil and then add the greens, or try this delicious recipe for Kohlrabi Puree. Enjoy!
  • Garlic: This is likely to be our last week for fresh green garlic; we’ll be harvesting mature cloves to hang and cure in the coming week or so. It’s a seasonal delicacy that we both adore and our garlic harvest each year always has a bittersweet tinge to it. Spring garlic will be back next year!
  • Onions: Our spring onions are also getting larger and starting to bulb up nicely. We’ll see how large they grow if we leave them be for a few weeks; with luck, their larger selves will be gracing your boxes starting in July.
  • Daikon: It looks like a white carrot, but tastes like a radish! Japanese daikon is a relative of the common radish. Some varieties can grow to be longer than your arm. By those standards, these are just babies, but they have an excellent taste (and they’re easier to fit in the box!). Try this seasonal spring stew with baby daikon, or use them anywhere you’d use a radish.
  • Tom Thumb Lettuce: After all my excitement over baby lettuce heads, I think these may be as close to a real “head” as we see this year. More a butter leaf than a butter head, these are nevertheless crisp and sweet, with just a hint of richer summer flavor creeping in. Heirloom heads are always looser than the iceberg-style lettuce we see in the grocery store. For this season and this year’s weather, I’m just grateful to have happy, yummy, disease-free lettuce this late into the year.
  • Mixed Greens: Kale and broccoli greens are delicious when cooked together using any favorite family recipe for collards or mustard greens. Remove the stems in the broccoli greens (and the kale if desired). A little vinegar, a little spice, some salt and pepper, and some of the garlic and onions will give them an excellent flavor. Add a little water, cover, and simmer over low to medium heat until they’re cooked to taste–we like them cooked through, but still a little crunchy, anywhere from 5 to 20 minutes according to the batch.

We hope you enjoy the bounty in week 5! We’ll see you next week for the final box of the spring. Keep in touch as we gear up for summer production–we can’t wait to show you what we’ve got in store.

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