Hello from the farm! I hope that you all are enjoying July with its heat and its rain. Last week I suggested a nice recipe for the parsley and turnip and I have yet to make it-I did however make a nice (maybe not healthy) recipe out of the zucchini-they are called zucchini potato skins. Click on the name for a hyperlink to the recipe-I actually did it for dinner for me and the kids and they were a hit! You can easily omit the meat and cheese and sub for other goodies on there to suit your dietary needs.
Here is what you can expect to find in your boxes this week.
Sugar snap peas
Green leaf lettuce
Rainbow Swiss chard
kohlrabi or turnip
or 2nd beans
Hello from the farm! It’s already week 5 in our farm share season and July already-how did this happen? I hope that you all had a wonderful 150th Canada Day filled with good food from your share and with family and friends. This week we will start to see some other great things coming into harvest-such as zucchini! This may not excite everyone as it does me-but I bought a pampered chef veggie spiralizer this past winter and I’ve been waiting for farm share season to try it out.
Here is this weeks share contents:
-endive (curly green leafy green)
-red leaf lettuce
-purple top turnip
This week I hope to try out this totally tasty turnip slaw recipe since I usually have no clue what to do with them. I have a friend who makes turnip fries from them-but I’ve always just roasted them in the oven with garlic and onions so this will be something new and different to try. I’ll try and remember to post results! I haven’t used my parsley yet from my share 2 weeks ago so this will use up 2 things from my share.
If you have any recipes please feel free to post them to our facebook page-we would love to see pictures of your beautiful creations with the produce from the farm. It’s always helpful for many of our members who are unfamiliar with different items in the shares and its always wonderful to see it from farm to table.
Welcome to week 4 of farm share! We have certainly had some strange weather-I hear Uxbridge got hail last night!! It’s been hot, then cooler and just all over the place. But the good news is-snow peas are here!
Don’t forget you can ALWAYS add to your box too-just make sure to send Jenny a message/get payment to her to add extra strawberries and other goodies to your box that you think you may want more of.
I stopped by the farm this past Saturday and got myself a ton of strawberries (well over 30 cups worth, which was a lot of work for this 32 week pregnant momma!) but made myself 16 jars of jam and froze 18 cups of strawberries for pies this winter! Here is a picture of just *part* of what I got (I transferred it from the box when I got home because the box was too big for our fridge).
Jenny has shared a lovely vegan meal with you all this week too (thank you minimalist baker).
Spinach/kale/collards falafel, couscous salad with parsley, and cucumber salad.
(this falafel works with any cooking greens- ie. black kale or swiss chard from this week’s box). If you don’t have a food processor, add a little oil or water so your blender can chop it up like I did, but you will have to add extra gluten free flour and some flax to make it form into balls.
For the couscous salad, I just cooked couscous as per instructions with a little apple cider vinegar (or lemon), honey, salt, pepper, olive oil, red pepper and fresh parsley.
The cucumber salad was as simple as adding apple cider vinegar, honey, salt and pepper to taste. Mint, basil or parsley are great additions here too!
It’s already week 3 of farm share! Jenny was wonderful doing the blog while I was away on vacation and now I am back and ready to share wonderful recipes and hopefully hear recipe suggestions from you all! Remember that we have a pinterest page with recipes too from previous years blog posts. Jenny has organized it even into different dietary categories so if your searching for something in particular she probably has it there!
Here is a note from Jenny about this week’s box.
Hello from the farm!
Well, it’s been one wet spring so far, but we’ve not been totally washed out thankfully! Did you have the crazy weather we did over the weekend? On Saturday night we had what we believe was a tornado, because it literally raised the roof on about 1/4 of our packing building! We are so thankful that everyone is ok and that giant piece of metal roof did not do any damage on the way down. Now we are busy repairing those new “skylights”.
Meanwhile, the strawberries have ripened! We know you’ll enjoy these and recommend you eat them right away (they are very perishable!) I’m sure you’ll find a way to eat them ;).
We are eagerly awaiting peas to come on (next week), and green beans will be close to follow. We hope you enjoy the bounty of June!
-white boy choy
-Boston lettuce (light green, buttery and delicate lettuce)
-purple dandelion greens (purple stemmed bitter green adds spunk to salads fresh or wilted)
This weeks recipe will be for the strawberries! I know they are super yummy fresh-but sometimes they are fun to add to salads and other things to give a nice hint of strawberry.
Here are 2 different salad recipes depending on how much work/time you have (if you already have granola the first one isn’t so bad either!) Recipes are hyper-links: Click on the title and it will take you to a very detailed blog post with the full recipe and photos. Strawberry kale salad with granola
The heat is here! And that means the growth of many items is accelerated. We are harvesting the asparagus and cucumbers every second day now. Any longer and we would risk letting the asparagus get seedy and the cucumbers get too large. With this combo of heat and rain, the strawberries, redcurrants and peas should be ready soon!
New this week we have cucumbers and mint. They happen to be wonderful- together! See below for a couple super simple ways to enjoy this pair.
More farm share members have been joining up these last couple weeks and we have an abundance of veggies to accommodate them- so if you know anyone that would love our csa, feel free to send them our way! Having trouble identifying items in your box? Many items are listed with pictures in our online store. https://zephyrorganics.com/custom-orders/
collard greens (makes an easy low carb, gluten-free wrap!)
oregano (savory herb excellent in Italian and Greek foods)
(makes one 2L pitcher)
Fill 2L jug with filtered water. Add 1/3 of a cucumber and 8-10 large leaves of mint to jug. Let sit for a few hours for flavours to mix. Enjoy the refreshing taste!
Refreshing Cucumber Salad
Serves 2-3 as side. Kid-friendly recipe.
1lb cucumber (1 large or 2 smaller)
1 1/2 tbsp. chopped mint (I used kitchen scissors- so easy!)
1 1/2 tbsp. honey
3 tbsp. white vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
Peel and chop cucumber and wash and chop mint.
Add all ingredients to a medium bowl and mix. Let refrigerate for 1 or more hours. Enjoy!
This recipe was born out of necessity when (gasp) we ran out of syrup on pancake day. I have a great gluten, dairy and egg free (and other allergen free) pancake recipe if anyone has been searching for such. This syrup was tasty with pancakes and great with yogurt the next day.
2 medium stalks rhubarb
1 cup blueberries (frozen)
4 tbsp. water
1/2 cup white or coconut sugar (or to taste- I am trying to remember the exact measure)
1 tsp. lemon juice
Wash and chop rhubarb. Add to small pot with lemon juice, water and sugar.
Heat on med-high until it comes to a boil. Lower heat to med-low and simmer until thickened.
Add blueberries and continue to cook and stir until blueberries are soft and cooked.
Enjoy hot with pancakes or chilled on yogurt!
Remember to keep hydrated this week as the temperatures climb!
It’s finally here! The new season of Farm Share, and I can’t believe all the items that are ready! Whether this is your first or 8th season with us, I hope you taste the local organic difference from the first bite. You’ll notice more leafy greens in the first few boxes, but there will be even more variety available as the weeks go by. This year we have cucumbers nice and early- only enough for the whole share boxes this week, but next week we should have quite a few, especially if we get some heat. As you might have guessed, these are coming from the greenhouse. The leeks are “over-wintered” which means they were planted last year and are ready in spring, kept safe by the blanket of snow. We also have lettuce nice and early, and quite substantial in size. Hope you are ready for some refreshing salads! It’s nice to lighten up our food choices along with the weather, and keep our bodies feeling their best.
Someone else is finally here: we are pleased to announce the arrival of our new son Boaz to the Eng family! We’re all doing well and very much in love with this little guy.
Stephanie will be returning to do the blog in a couple weeks, but for now, I (Jennifer) am here to ring in the new season with you.
Remember, you can get all new posts from us sent to your email inbox as soon as it is posted (Tuesday or Wednesday) each week. Enter your email in the box on the right hand side of this blog page. Now, let’s get to identifying the delicious veggies in your box:
Here are the contents from left to right of the HALF SHARES:
-rhubarb (long red and green thick stalks- try in cake, muffins, or cookies, or simply stew with lemon juice and a little sugar to taste and enjoy with yogurt)
-asparagus (green shoots with purple tips – lightly toss in olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and try them roasted at 400 degrees for 10-15 mins, or get creative with a salad. Also great paired with goat or feta cheese)
-baby bok choy (green leafy vegetable with light green, crunchy head- great in stir fries or enjoy it raw in salad)
-red radish (pinky-red roots with green tops- super in potato and egg salads, toss salad, as a crudité, or roast if you are looking for a milder taste)
-rainbow swiss chard (TOP- pink, white, orange and yellow stalks with green tops- delicious simply wilted with your oil or fat of choice, super chopped up and wilted in pastas, or add some colour to salads)
-green leaf lettuce (the perfect lettuce for salads, burgers and tacos)
-green kale (BOTTOM- bluish-green crunchy leafy green, makes great kale chips, great in soups, folded into mashed potatoes, or massage leaves with olive oil and enjoy in salad)
-leeks (add sweet onion flavour to soups or any savoury dish- especially potato leek, or try in dip
-2nd bunch asparagus
-basil pot (potted herb- keep soil moist and do not refrigerate), adds delicious flavour to salads, pastas, dips, etc.
If you have a WHOLE SHARE, you will receive all the above with the addition of:
-cucumber (super as a crudité or in salad)
-spinach (delicious lightly wilted or raw in salad)
-green onions (chop to add some kick to salads, dips, or onion flavour in cooked foods- also makes a great garnish)
-garlic chives (it may look like grass, but it’s full of yummy garlic flavour- skip the powdered stuff and enjoy the fresh taste, full of vitamin C)
-romaine lettuce (delicious in all different salads, and always a favourite in Caesar salad)
CUSTOMER TIP: Or if you have a juicer, anything goes! Experiment and you won’t waste any of the veggie goodness in your box! Apples make a good base for veggie juices if you enjoy a little sweet.
The final box of the season is here! The 22 weeks have flown by for us, have they for you? Here is a quick note from Jennifer to end the season.
Hi everyone! It’s a very brisk week on the farm but so beautiful. The fall colours are out in all their splendour and when lit with a little sun, are a truly marvellous sight. We are still harvesting some things from the fields: kale, spinach and cilantro remain, and some items that have been growing since the spring: Brussels sprouts and Jerusalem artichokes. Cutting down the Brussels sprouts is like cutting down a tree, at least for the larger ones. Some of you will get leeks instead as some of the Brussels sprouts are still growing and won’t be ready until November or December!
Jerusalem artichokes may be new to you. They’re not like other artichokes. In fact, they are a tuber like potatoes and send chutes from an artichoke planted like a seed to form several more artichokes from each plant. From the sunflower family, they grow all year, are very tall (5 or more feet!) and bloom a sunflower like flower just before they are ready for harvest.
So why would you want to eat these odd, almost ginger-looking tubers? http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/vegetables-and-vegetable-products/2456/2
They are a great source of iron, thiamin, potassium, and niacin. It can be tough to find good plant sources for iron (spinach and baby bokchoy are awesome for this as well), and potassium is something that we need to be getting all through the day as no one source gets you all you need or even close. Why do we need potassium? For our muscles to contract, including that all-important muscle: the heart, for maintaining healthy blood pressure, and for our body to function well at the cellular level. So eat up on potassium rich foods!
The banana, famous for it’s potassium content, only has 23 percent of your daily value and Jerusalem artichokes are not far behind at 18 percent. This means you should be eating potassium rich foods all day long, like Jerusalem artichokes and bananas, spinach, avacadoes, sweet potatoes, kefir or yogurt, white beans and pepper squash.
Hope a little information inspires your healthy eating. I like to make a creamy soup with Jerusalem artichokes, slice (don’t peel) an Sautee with garlic and olive oil or butter, or roast along with carrots, beets and squash.
I sincerely hope you have enjoyed each bite of your organic, local eating experience, and perhaps discovered some new nutritional powerhouses that you never knew existed! With the abundance of choice we have in our food today (and so many of them poor ones), it’s wonderful to trust the goodness of organic veggies in their natural state (no label required). We thank you for taking on this culinary adventure and hope you’ll be eager to enjoy it again next year.
Greetings from the farm! Heavy frosts are finally hitting here so the games changes out there in the fields. We have to bid farewell to lettuce, swiss chard, tomatoes, tomatillos, and all of the more sensitive souls out there in the fields. Our beans were carefully covered so they survived the frost! What a treat for this time of year. If you are sick of beans, blanch and freeze them and take them out on a rainy day for a quick veggie side.
You may be overwhelmed with those big gorgeous bunches of cilantro. A fellow customer advises me she freezes them in olive oil with a dash of salt in ice cube trays, pops them into freezer bags and has a burst of cilantro flavour ready for weeks to come in her freezer.
You may be wondering what is up with that funny, tiny and dry corn you received. No, we didn’t send you terrible corn. It’s popping corn…as in pop corn! You can pop it right on the cob in your microwave (or I’m sure in the pot as well). Gather your spouse, the kids (even the teens). This is just plain cool! Just butter the kernels on the cob, place in one paper bag and then another (in the other direction forming a closed bag), and pop in the microwave for about 3-4 minutes. I like to listen for when the popping sounds are spaced a few seconds apart to know when it’s done. Here’s a youtube video for you visual folks: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=IawMV4Ll1Ao
A friendly reminder to remember to put out your boxes and ice packs please! Time is running out for us to collect them. On your last delivery, you will receive a cardboard box that does not need to be returned. Feel free to re-use, recycle or use it as kindling!
Your week 20 veggie lineup is as follows:
-butternut squash (makes an amazing creamy soup)
-eggplant (great noodle substitute in lasagna!)
-red radish (roast them if you don’t dig the spicyness)
-baby boy choy
We had a red cabbage recipe sent to use from one of our customers, we are so grateful for those who take the time to share old childhood favorites. This she said is from the Netherlands, which is neat since my husband and his family are dutch!
Quarter the cabbage, cut out the core, then cut into thin 1/4inch strips. Put in pot, add about 1 cup water, or more as it evaporates, so there’s about an inch of water in bottom all the time. Add 5-6 whole cloves. Cook until tender, about 30-45 minutes. In the meantime, in a separate pot, boil about 5-6 potatoes, quartered. When both cabbage and potatoes are cooked, mash them together to make a delicious red cabbage stew. Add salt and pepper to your own taste. Serve with smoked sausage or other meat or by itself.
The same method can be used to cook savoy cabbage (Green Cabbage Stew). However, instead of cloves used in the red cabbage recipe, add some chopped garlic (if desired) and cook together with quartered potatoes in the same pot. Add salt and pepper to your own taste. Then mash together and serve with sausages or smoked meat or by itself.
Thanksgiving is upon us! To think the summer has already come and gone and fall is here in full force. There’s no denying it when we are all preparing to gather together to celebrate hopefully with those you hold dear. Here is a note from Jennifer from the farm!
Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!
I hope you can see abundance in your life. This thanksgiving I am thankful for access to medical care. It’s been a crazy week with 2 trips to the hospital (don’t worry, everyone will be ok). I am thankful that there are hospitals, doctors and nurses there to help us when we can no longer manage on our own and we don’t have to worry about whether we can afford the care. Also, I am thankful for good foods that can help keep us out of the hospital (most of the time). Hope you enjoy these thanksgiving veggies with your family and take a moment to reflect on your blessings (even if it’s in the midst of trying times).
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Ps. I’m also thankful for an abundance of beans (a real treat in October), and this gorgeous monarch that apparently doesn’t mind being photographed. (see photos)
-onions or leeks
-red delicious apples
-leeks and onions
Every year I like to share my favorite pumpkin pie recipe. This year is no different, if you haven’t ever made a pumpkin pie from scratch I HIGHLY recommend doing so. It’s a bit of extra work getting the puree from the pumpkin but the results is OUT OF THIS WORLD. If you don’t like pumpkin pie, like myself prior to making one from scratch-try this out. Not even on the same planet as store bought pies or canned ‘pumpkin’ (which I’ve heard is actually squash).
Can you believe we have just 4 more weeks of farm share left? For those of us who get our shares biweekly that means just 2 more boxes! The summer has flown by and now we are tasting fall, our turkey is on order from Don Howard Farms in Newmarket-which means thanksgiving is just around the corner. Home made pumpkin pies, apples from the orchard and of course, amazing stuff from Zephyr Organics will be on our table to enjoy this Thanksgiving. Here is a note from Jen:
Happy fall everyone! I think I’m finally ready to embrace cozy sweaters, yummy soups and lots and lots of tea! I’m excited to share more honey crisp apples with you. If you notice a whitish film on the apples- no worries. We use clay (naturally found in soil) as a physical barrier to protect the apples from the abundant pests and diseases that attack them. This will wash off with water. I hope you fal in love with apples all over again enjoying them fresh like that. Here are some photos of beautiful things I spot around the farm: an apple tree makes a perfect place for a bird’s nest and the eggplant greenhouse is looking fantastic after being almost destroyed by potato bugs. These gorgeous purple flowers show us the plant is happy and ready to produce more eggplant! Enjoy your tomatoes as all the vines are dying out. We had a mild frost unexpectedly and saw some damage to plants but I think they’ll pull through (well except for the tomatoes). Stay tuned for a Thanksgiving themed basket next week!
-watermelon or green beans
-snow peas (or sugar snap)
-apples (honey crisp)
-rainbow swiss chard (or green)
-green leaf lettuce
I’m not sure about any of you, but I’m still struggling with my egg plant recipes. I’ve been reading up on some tips and tricks and plan on trying this eggplant meatball recipe.I am hoping we have better luck since we didn’t care much for the recipes I’ve shared before.