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Farm Share 2019 Week 2 (June 12-15)

This may be your second week in or maybe this is your first taste of the season. With the cool spring we have been having, our greenhouses have been even more essential to provide you with the variety you expect. This week offers many different leafy greens, from spinach, to kale, to bokchoy and turnip greens. We hope to inspire you in this blog that yes, you can handle all this leafy goodness, and your body will thank you for it, as these are the most-nutrient-dense veggies around!

Cucumbers are bearing their fruit! Can you spot them?

A couple of crops we are eagerly anticipating are greenhouse cucumbers (little babies are on the plants now- can you spot them?) which will be ready in a week or 2, and carrots, which are the size of my pinkie fingers now and will be quite lovely in a couple weeks. Of course there is also lettuce, which is in the field and finally starting to grow! We are watching hopefully to see if we will have some next week, and in the mean time, our whole share holders get to sample them as baby lettuces.

Whole share contents: Chinese cabbage, mixed baby lettuces, potted basil, rutabaga, parsnips, radish, 2 bunches asparagus, green onions, cilantro, rhubarb, bok choy, green kale, turnip greens & spinach
half share contents: green kale, turnip greens, spinach, radish, rhubarb, cilantro, bok choy, asparagus x 2 & potted basil
simply six share: red potatoes, radish, green kale, spinach asparagus & potted basil
Beef & bok choy stir fry
asparagus & kale fettucine with turnip green Caesar salad
Thai Kale, quinoa & turnip green salad

Thai Kale, Quinoa & Turnip Green Salad

Ingredients

3 cups green kale, finely chopped (I used scissors)

2 cups turnip greens, finely chopped

1/2 cup cilantro, chopped

1/2 bunch radish, thinly sliced

1 carrot, shredded

1 tsp fresh ginger

1/4 cup green onion, chopped

1/2 lime

1/4 cup peanuts, almonds or cashews

1 tbsp. maple syrup or honey

1/4 cup peanut butter, smooth

3 tbsp. soy sauce

3/4 cup quinoa

1 pinch red pepper flakes

1 tbsp. rice vinegar

1 tsp sesame oil, toasted

1 1/2 cups water

Directions

  1. Wash and chop produce and cooked quinoa and add to large mixing bowl.
  2. Mix liquid ingredients for dressing (heating lightly if needed to mix) and toss with salad.
  3. Enjoy, topped with nuts or chicken.

Happy grazing!

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Farm Share 2019 Week 1 (June 5-8)

Welcome to a new season of farm share everyone! In this unusually chilly start to June, we sure are thankful for our greenhouses and some lovely root crops to round out our veggie shares. This week I thought I’d give you a visual for what is in your box so you can identify each item easily. I also thought I’d share a recipe I just made up that got resounding “yums” from my family and uses tons of spring veggies! Finally, meal planning is an important part of enjoying your farm share baskets without seeing any of it go to waste. Do you have a plan day? It sounds like Tuesdays may be just the right time for us now, as I will be posting the blog each week on Tuesday nights.

In future blog posts we will be learning from other amazing farm members who have a lot to share, from naturopaths, to nutritionists, to minimalists and busy moms, all tied together in their passion for great food.

Check out your farm share box contents below in picture form, with labels!

Simply Six Share with asparagus, baby bok choy, radish, red potatoes, spinach and green onion.
Our first ever Simply 6 Share
Half Share with asparagus, radish, rhubarb, rutabaga, red potatoes, green onions, baby bokchoy, spinach, parsnips & turnip greens
The first half share
Whole share with 2 x asparagus, rhubarb, radish, turnip greens, spinach, garlic chives, baby bokchoy,  bokchoy, green onions, parsnips, cilantro, green kale. & red potatoes.
Your First Whole Share of the season 🙂
Our first fruit share of the season: 3lbs gala apples (Canadian), 3 large mangos, 1/2 pint raspberries, 1/2 pint blueberries, 1 cantaloupe (Mexico)
Allergy-Free, Veggie-packed Chicken Pot Pie

Allergy-Free & Veggie-Packed Chicken Pot Pie

Serves 6

As soon as I knew we’d be having parsnips this week, I knew I ought to give you a recipe for them. After all, you’re not going to want to gnaw on them raw like you would a carrot. You see, they are a tougher veg, but their delicious flavour means we need to find a way to coax some tenderness out of them! Enter the instant pot- if you don’t have one, this would also be great in a slow cooker. Now, for the recipe:

Ingredients

-600g chicken breast, chopped into chunks

-2 tbsp olive oil

-400g parsnips (about 3/4 of your bag)

-400g rutabaga

-3 large carrots

-600g red potatoes (with or without skin)

-3/4 bunch red radish

-1 can full-fat coconut milk (60% fat)

-3/4 cup chicken broth

-1 tsp. poultry seasoning

-1 tsp. dried thyme or 1 tbsp fresh

-salt and pepper to taste

-2 tbsp fresh chives

Directions

  1. Put chopped chicken and olive oil in instant pot and set to sautee. Ligthly sautee as you wash, peel and chop parsnips, carrots, rutabaga, potatoes and radish (can be left whole or halved)
  2. Add vegetables to instant pot when meat is partially cooked. Add in coconut milk, chicken broth, poultry seasoning, thyme, salt and pepper.
  3. Set the instant pot to pressure cook for 10 minutes. Remember to put the little dial in the “sealing” position. Meanwhile, prepare biscuits or socca/farinita (chickpea flatbread) to serve with (pictured).
  4. Alternatively, saute chicken in pan on stove and add all ingredients to slow cooker…and be patient…very patient 🙂
Lovely Spinach & goat cheese stuffed chicken breast and penne with tomato veggie sauce my mom made for us!

Now for a sample meal plan my family for the week (farm share veggies used in parentheses)

Monday- Chicken Pot Pie (parsnip, rutabaga, red potato, radish, chives)

Tuesday- Spinach & Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken with Penne Pasta & Tomato veggie sauce (spinach, baby bokchoy in sauce)

Wednesday- Roasted Salmon, asparagus & Red potatoes (asparagus, red potatoes)

Thursday- Beef & bokchoy stir fry with rice (baby bok choy, bok choy)

Friday- Chicken & asparagus pizza with turnip green salad (turnip greens, asparagus)

Saturday- Homemade chicken nuggets, rutabaga fries & salad (rutabaga, turnip greens)

Sunday- Chicken fettucine with kale & asparagus (kale, asparagus)

The rhubarb I will stew with a little sugar and water (you can also add lemon juice) to enjoy with yogurt for a breakfast parfait.

I hope these ideas provide some inspiration. Happy creating!

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Farm Share Week 22 (Oct 31-Nov 3)

Dear Farm Share Members,

Ice cream cone, anyone?

We made it! 22 weeks of eating from the fruits of the land, trying a new recipe or 2, or 30 and perhaps even learning a new vegetable. We are so thankful you’ve taken this journey with us. It’s easy to put good food at the bottom of your priority list in this busy world, but taking the time to enjoy unprocessed, organic produce is worth your time for your health, and even enjoyable!

We hope you enjoyed this little adventure and are ready for one last summer box, although I don’t think any of us are still calling it summer out there ;).

A heavy frost this Wednesday but such a beautiful day!

So let me say thank you, thank you, thank you from the bottom of my heart for caring about your food, and how and by whom it’s grown! We sure appreciate it.

If you want this local food journey to carry on throughout the fall, winter and spring, we offer winter vegetable and fruit shares. Please Register asap so we can save a spot for you https://zephyrorganics.com/what-is-farmshare/products/

Now, for this week’s list….

Finally we have those potatoes I have been nagging my husband about for weeks and weeks! They look really lovely, and I think you’ll find they have a wonderful taste.

 

Half Shares

  • chicogga beets (candy-striped! cut ’em open and discover the awesomeness. Slice them thinly and they can be used like a cracker)
  • carrots
  • parsley
  • red or russet potatoes
  • pepper squash
  • baby bokchoy
  • red cabbage (so good German style: )
  • sweet potatoes
  • leeks
  • black kale
  • Whole shares add:
    pumpkin (try these gluten free vegan doughnuts if you are looking for a treat)
  • rutabaga
  • eggplant
  • peppers
  • tomatillos or Chinese cabbage (try the tomatillos in vegetarian chili!)

Fruit

  • 6 kiwis
  • 4 midnight oranges
  • 2.5lbs bananas
  • 6 pears
  • 2 pomegranates
  • gala apples

We welcome your feedback! Thanks for choosing us as your farm this year!

Sincerely, Jennifer, the Eng fanily, and the Zephyr Organics team.

Such a gorgeous morning on the farm!

 

 

 

 

 

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Farm Share Week 20 (Oct 17-20, 2018)

Hi Veggie lovers!

Im pretty excited about our first ever sweet potato harvest!

I thought I’d give you a jump on things this week as you meal plan. Brrrr it was cold today. We are definitely in double socks season on the farm, which means we also had to go harvest all the lettuce!

New this past week we just harvested our first ever sweet potatoes! I was quite surprised at how large they turned out with our limited experience growing this crop. Now that they are harvested they are curing in the greenhouse. In this process the starches turn to sugars (thus making them super tasty!) and they are able to keep longer in storage. I will send them next week or on the last week. We’ll see how long I can wait, as I am so excited for them!

We also have some jalapeños for the whole shares to spice up your lives. Some of them have turned red and though they are definitely still spicy, there is some sweetness in there too. I made mine into jalapeno poppers again because I am a little obsessed.

Also this week we have Brussels sprouts again. My dear mother made me dinner while I worked today (I know, I am spoiled!) and sped along the cooking process while maintaining some amazing taste of a brussels sprouts-carrots combo by first boiling them until tender, then pan-frying them with cooked bacon pieces, garlic, onion powder and oregano. So good!

For those of you wondering: this is week 20 of 22. Those of you with weekly shares will get 2 boxes after this week, and those of you with biweekly shares are only due for one box after this one. The season has flown by! I hope you can savour every bite 🙂

Half Shares

  • brussels sprouts
  • pumpkin
  • carrots
  • red beets
  • radishes
  • green peppers
  • cilantro
  • green leaf lettuce
  • green kale
  • celery

Whole Shares (add)

  • spinach
  • Red cabbage
  • Parsnips or watermelon radish
  • romaine lettuce
  • eggplant
  • jalapeno peppers

Fruit Shares

  • 2.5lbs bananas
  • 3lbs gala apples
  • 5 oranges
  • 1lb kiwi or 3 large grapefruit
  • 1 pineapple

Enjoy!

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Farm Share Week 17 (Sept 26-29, 2018)

Hello from Holland!

Father and son check out the varieties of one of their favourite crops-kale!

 

The littlest farmer looking at the different carrot varieties.

We’ve spent just over a week here and we finally got to do a farm visit to the farm of one of our seed producers, Beyo. It’s cool to see some of the Dutch culture applied to farming. I love the “less is more” vibe I am experiencing here. The homes here are smaller, people travel less, enjoy tea with friends more, and space is used efficiently. Although we already grow cucumbers in a similar way, I loved seeing the pepper plants growing vertically. They look quite happy!

The food here consists of a lot of bread and very delicious cheese, though I have seen a beautiful assortment of vegetables and fruits in the open air markets we have gone to in a few different towns.

Fall is in the air and Thanksgiving is just around the corner, so I thought it was time to give you a gorgeous little pumpkin to add some hearty flavour to your dishes. No, you do not have to make pie! Pumpkin has a place on your dinner menus too! Here is a recipe idea for you. I can’t wait to dig into some pumpkin when I get home. Feel free to add peppers, greens and other veggies to this dish. To make the pumpkin puree, all you have to do is cut the pumpkin around the middle (using a large, sharp knife), scoop out the seeds (save for making a snack), and place halves facedown on a baking sheet and bake for about an hour at 400 degrees. Then scoop the flesh out of the skin and put in your blender. Blend until smooth. Voila! Pumpkin puree!

I should warn you, a few of the items below may have been changed based on availability. Each week I start with a plan, but nature can be surprising and sometimes a Veggie grows more quickly or slowly than I had planned. I hope you can embrace nature’s surprises along with me 🙂

Half
Pumpkin
Pepper squash
Leeks
Eggplant
Red peppers
Field tomatoes
Green or red kale
Red leaf lettuce
Parsnips Alt carrots
Spanish onions

Whole
grape tomatoes
celery
beets
parsley
green beans
Swiss chard

bananas
pears
blackberries
silken apples
kiwi

Have a simple and beautiful week!

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Farm Share Week 16 (Sept 19-22, 2018)

Hello from Holland! Doug and I are in the Netherlands to celebrate a family milestone and getting a little break from the busy days of late summer (just about fall now!).

Other family members and workers have stepped up to make sure you get your produce right on schedule. If you need to contact us, email info@zephyrorganics.com and Regina at the farm will help you out 🙂

Buildings over roads is an example of how the Dutch use space wisely.. 

I hope to visit one of the farms of one of the companies we get our seeds from, and take in some local markets! For now I have been inspired by the efficient use of space everywhere: farmers growing crops or pasturing animals on little straps of land alongside highways and buildings that stand above roads.

 

This weeks recipe I’m sharing a rainbow collard green spring wrap with shrimp recipe.  Truthfully I rarely follow a recipe 100% since I usually don’t have all the stuff to complete one.  This time I sautéed up some of the veggie from the share (tomatoes, peppers, cabbage from a few weeks ago, onions) and then cooked up rice and quinoa.  I put that in the center of the wraps and topped it with shrimp I cooked up and the family loved it and I forgot to get a photo.  It was our first time using collard greens instead of wraps and everyone enjoyed it! I’ll be doing it again.

In the mean time, here is the contents of your box this week:

Half Shares

radishes

carrots

butternut squash

Red or green cabbage

field tomatoes

cherry tomatoes

Green beans

ground cherries

red leaf lettuce

Baby bokchoy

Whole Shares

Spanish onions

romaine lettuce

saladette tomatoes

spaghetti squash

zucchini

garlic chives

Fruit shares

3lbs bananas

2lbs prune plums (BC)

2lbs red grapes

4 oranges

bag of avocadoes

Hope you enjoy the new fall Veggies and savour the last tastes of summer!

 

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Farm Share Week 15 (Sept 12-15, 2018)

Hello everyone. After a few days of reaching into that forgotten box of fall clothes, summer is giving us another surge of heat! Enjoy those last few days of shorts and sandals, and definitely catch some sun when you can.

Butternut squash ripe and ready in the fields! 

The produce mix is still mostly summery, but with a nod to fall with some butternut squash. If you have never made butternut squash soup, you are missing out! Butternut is the creamiest squash in my opinion, and especially when you add a few potatoes and puree it…it’s pure creamy soup heaven!

We included a little tomatillo salsa kit with a recipe right in your boxes this week. I adapted it to a smaller size for you to try out, complete with a jalapeño  (please use gloves when chopping it up and handling the seeds!) and a bunch of cilantro. Hope you enjoy some refreshing salsa in this heat. If you are getting overwhelmed with tomatoes at this point, why not think red salsa as well? Or load some tomatoes on tacos! Nothing is better than a tomato in season!

some tomatillo salsa to spice up your life!

An exciting note for myself (Jennifer) personally- from the 18th-30th I will be travelling to Holland for my husband’s Oma and Opa’s 60th wedding anniversary! Kind of a big deal, and we just couldn’t miss it. But rest assured, your veggies and fruit will still be delivered on schedule. My lovely sister in law will be responding to my emails and you may also phone her in case of an urgent need (her phone number will be included in my voicemail message). We have some capable workers and family at the farm who will be harvesting and lovingly packaging up your shares. I am so excited but it is also so hard to leave the farm mid-season!

Hard at work, enjoying an abundant harvest of baby bokchoy

Here is your list for this week:

Half Shares

  • green beans (great to blanch and freeze if you have too many 🙂
  • carrots
  • red beets
  • tomatillo salsa kit
  • field tomatoes
  • cherry tomatoes
  • bunch cilantro
  • green peppers
  • romaine lettuce
  • butternut squash

Whole Shares

  • ground cherries
  • eggplant
  • celery
  • bok choy/baby bokchoy
  • Collard greens
  • campari tomatoes
  • green onions

Fruit

  • 6 sunrise apples (BC)
  • 2lbs black plums (BC)
  • 3 red grapefruit
  • 3 nectarines  (BC)
  • 1.5lbs red grapes

Hope you can savour the summer and summery produce while it lasts!

 

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Farm Share Week 8 (July 25-28, 2018)

Picking blackberries for the fruit shares…so gorgeous!

Hello from the farm,

Hope you are having a wonderful week. We’ve been busy picking all sorts of yummy things as usual (more broccoli, now some cauliflower, and kohlrabi). What do you do with some kohlrabi you say? It’s got a nice crunchy texture and is in the brassica family like broccoli. The taste I find is similar. I peeled and sloced mine as a crudite, and also peeled and grated another one for in some collard green wraps with salmon salad and lettuce. What a satisfying and easy meal it was, and it’s low carb, gluten and dairy free as well.

I am super stoked about Melanie at Sparks Honey’s first harvest of the year with the bees living on our farm. I never knew the taste could vary that much in honey, but seriously, this is the best honey I’ve tasted! Looks like the organic veggie life is agreeing with our 6 legged friends :). If you are dying to know how great it tastes, or want the health benefits of raw local honey, message me and I’ll send a jar with your farm share or pick it up from the farm store. The cost is $15 for 2lbs.

This week I had the immense but slightly painful pleasure of picking blackberries! Those thorns had my by the head and shirt at some points, but they are so worth it! What a treat for me. This was the first time I got to try them freshly picked. Hope you are as jazzed as I am fruit share people.

Watermelom will be ready so soon! They really look gorgeous out there. Maybe 1 more week, and green beans are coming soon too.

Another new item is those pickling cucumbers. We will have them for bulk orders soon, but we thought we’d give you the first taste. No, you do not have to go to great efforts to enjoy pickles. Here’s an easy recipe to savour the fresh pickles for longer.

Now, for your list:

 

Half Shares

  • Cucumber
  • Zucchini
  • Snow or sugar snap peas
  • Beets
  • Broccoli, cauliflower or kohlrabi
  • Endive or dandelion greens (curly leafy veg. We recommend them as a cooking green as they are a bitter veg)
  • Collard greens (make amazing raw wraps)
  • Red kale
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Pickling cucumbers

Whole Shares (same as above with…)

  • Carrots
  • Radish
  • Cauliflower or broccoli and kohlrabi
  • Fennel
  • Mint (remember, it’s mojito season!) Try mint syrup with some club soda…yumm
  • Red leaf lettuce

Fruit Shares

  • 2.5lbs bananas
  • 1lb strawberries
  • 1/2 pint locally picked (and organic of course) blackberries
  • 4 grapefruits
  • 1 pineapple

Hope you enjoy the fruits of our labours!

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Farm Share Week 4: June 27-30th, 2018

Hi everyone!
The asparagus fermenting workshop is tomorrow at Port Perry Library at 7pm. Together we will be learning the tips and tricks of creating safe, fabulous ferments (basically the process whereby teeny tiny bugs transform food to make it more nutritious and tasty and last a whole lot longer!) All supplies included:) Hope to see you there! Register here: https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/fermenting-workshop-organic-asparagus-2-ways-tickets-47224165751?aff=efbevent
Here comes the rain! I hope it’s not ruining your plans…but we’re sure thankful for multiple good rains this past week. The peas are loving it, along with everything else. Growth is starting to accelerate as our cucumbers, peas, carrots and beets come on to more full production.
Asparagus is in its last couple days so we have a limited supply. I hope you’ve enjoyed asparagus season well with double bunches some weeks. Now we must let the plants go to seed: they shoot up like fuzzy bluish “dr seuss” trees this time of year. Zucchini, green beans and currants will be ready soon (redcurrants next week!) As we usher in the month of July. Broccoli, kolhrabi and cauliflower (all part of the Brassica family of veggies) are coming along and most summer and even fall crops are now in the ground.
I hope all the organic bounty helps you feel your best this week!
The pics enclosed: don’t throw away your beet tops- they make a lovely cooking green for pasta, soup or adding colour to salads.
Here is 7 things you can do with garlic scapes.
And recipe for beet greens.
Half Shares
-cucumbers
-radish
-black kale
-carrots
-beets
-garlic scapes
-snow peas
-red leaf lettuce
-baby bokchoy
-spinachWhole Shares (same as above with additional)…
-rhubarb
-asparagus or 2nd carrots
-mint
-sugar snap peas
-dandelion greens
Fruit
1 Watermelon
1lb strawberries (unfortunately could not find Ontario)
2.5lbs bananas
6 large gala apples
4 lemons
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Farm Share Week 1 June 6-9, 2018

Welcome to a new season of farm share!

It’s been a crazy year so far with a very cold April and super hot May, and this week it feels like fall…what?! We also just had our Open House! It was a perfect day and it was a pleasure to connect with the awesome folks who support our farm as farm share members, and other great folks eager to see what organic veggie farming looks like.

Great people, great produce and of course, great snacks at the open house!

I am excited to send you lots of fresh spring veggies, and plenty of asparagus. Asparagus is a short-lived season, so I hope you enjoy it often. Asparagus is fantastic on the barbecue (I put it in tin foil or a barbecue safe dish, slathered in MELT butter alternative and lightly salted). You can also put it right on the grill, but I don’t want to lose any of those delicious spears if they were to fall!

We also have some lovely rhubarb. If you were at our open house, you got to try it in gluten-free vegan strawberry rhubarb bars. These were a hit and quite simple. We used quinoa oats due to an oat sensitivity. You can get the recipe here.

If that sounds like too much work, why not whip up some rhubarb chia refrigerator jam? Healthy, easy, and great with yogurt, on toast, or topping ice cream. Here’s the recipe. Feel free to tweak the sweeteners to your own taste buds.

Ingredients

  • 1lb rhubarb, washed and finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup real maple syrup or honey
  • 1 tsp stevia powder (or other sweetener if needed)
  • 1 tbsp. chia seeds
  • optional: lemon juice to preserve colour, or I stirred in and then removed cooked beets to give it a pinkier hue

Directions

  1. Finely chop 1lb rhubarb. Add to small saucepan and cook on medium, stirring regularly. When it begins to cook down, add maple syrup, stevia, optional lemon or cooked beets and chia seeds.
  2. Stir and cook until you have a smooth jam. (Don’t worry if it’s not all the way thickened as it will thicken with chia seeds in the fridge).
  3. Refrigerate for a few hours and enjoy!

Rhubarb chia refrigerator jam is yummy and so easy!

Now for your box contents:

Half Shares

  • 1lb asparagus
  • another pound of asparagus (never too much, right!?)
  • 1lb baby bokchoy
  • 1lb rhubarb
  • 1 pint snow peas
  • 1 bunch green kale
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • 1 bunch garlic chives (chop up as needed with kitchen scissors and add to any savory dish)
  • 1lb rutabaga (makes a great mash, French fry, addition to soup or even raw in salad. One of my ingenious customers gave me the idea to slice them into rounds, bake them and then top as pizzas!)
  • 1 head green leaf lettuce

Whole Shares

All of the above…plus…

  • turnip greens (light green leafy veg, great in salad or as cooking green)
  • sugar snap peas
  • arugula (spicy salad green)
  • lemon balm (makes a lovely tea or chop and use in pasta for added lemony flavour)
  • a 3rd asparagus! (so good on pizza, in pasta, in stir fries, or just sautéed as a side)

Fruit Shares

  • 3lbs bananas
  • 8 nectarines
  • 1lb strawberries
  • 5 Valencia oranges
  • 1 honey dew melon