Farm Share Week 4

Jul 4, 2012 | Uncategorized

Hello from the farm and Happy belated Canada Day!

It’s been hot, hot, hot on the farm for weeks now. Even the lakes are heating up for some early swimming, and I hope some of you were able to take advantage of the perfect July 1 long weekend we enjoyed. You’ll be delighted to know that all of that sunlight also means that more and more vegetables are being coaxed out of the ground, and some earlier than usual.

New this week we have zucchini- another fast-growing wonder. I spied the first thumb-sized zucchinis on Saturday (just the odd one) and by Tuesday, we had enough for the first 50 Farm Share boxes of the week. Zucchini must be cut every 2 days, or you risk them growing too large, which causes them to be less tender. Don’t worry, if the zucchini is larger than your cat, it will not be put in your box! You might already have plans for your zucchini, or perhaps you wonder what to do with them. How about introducing them to taco night- this is the only way my mother makes taco filling, and I love her for it. The zucchini flavour gives a subtle compliment to the peppy seasonings of taco filling, while adding a nice moistness to the ground beef (without the fat). I will attempt to make this into a proper recipe.

Zucchini Taco Filling


-1 lb. ground beef (or veggie ground round)
-1 medium or 2 small zucchini
-1 medium onion (or white parts of green onion)
-2 garlic scapes or cloves

-1/2 tbsp. chili powder
-1/4 tsp. garlic powder
-1/4 tsp. onion powder
-1 tsp. ground cumin
-salt to taste
-pepper to taste
-1/4 tsp. oregano
-1/4 tsp. paprika
-1/4 cup water (or as needed)

1. Brown ground beef or veggie ground round in large skillet on mediu,-high heat, adding oil only if using very lean meat. Drain excess fat if necessary.
2. Add chopped onion and garlic scapes until fragrant. Add zucchini, cover and cook until soft, stirring occasionally for even cooking.
3. Add seasonings along with 1/4 cup water or amount needed to mix in seasonings properly and stir well. Drain excess moisture if necessary (to prevent taco drip)
4. Remove from heat and serve in favourite taco shells along with finely chopped lettuce, tomato or salsa, shredded cheddar cheese, green parts of green onions, and a dollop of sour cream. Enjoy!

And did I mention raspberries?! I probably don’t have to tell you what to do with them ;). We also have garden peas, which you will need to shell, as their pods are not too tasty to nibble on. However, they would make a lovely addition to the stir fry recipe below or to some fettucine alfredo. If there are any vegetables you are lacking ideas for, comment below and I will focus my recipe efforts where you need it most.

Here is Your List of Goodies for this week:

Half Shares
-cauliflower or carrots
-snow peas
-garden peas (these ones need to be shelled- the pods are hard to chew!)
-romaine lettuce
-red leaf lettuce
-spinach or green swiss chard
-green onions
-baby bok choy
-red radish

Whole Shares
-snow peas
-garden peas (these ones need to be shelled- the pods are hard to chew!)
-romaine lettuce
-red leaf lettuce
-green onions
-baby bok choy
-carrots (the first crop of the season!)
-red beets
-red swiss chard
-asparagus or kohlrabi (definately the last week for asparagus- we have had a long asparagus season this year)
-red radish

Also, Durham and Pickup customers get their basil from the other week- Remember not to put the leaves in the fridge. Basil likes it damp and room temperature. Ideally, pick the leaves off your plant right before using!

Need a Recipe for some of those peas? If you still have your sugar snaps from last week, try this 3 pea stir-fry. Or, try adding other veggies that need to find their way into a recipe. I found this recipe in “Simply in Season” by Mary Beth Lind and Cathleen Hockman-Wert, an absolutely perfect gift I received for my birthday. The whole cookbook is about eating local produce in the U.S. and Canada. It even has recipes for those odd vegetables like okra and kohlrabi.

Three Pea Stir-Fry

My version of this tasty little stir-fry, using radish in place of the sugar snaps and julienning the snow peas. I also subbed rice vinegar for the sesame oil (because that’s what I had around). The red pepper added a nice snap to it.

-1 large clove of garlic (or scape of garlic)
-1 tbsp. ginger root, minced
-1/8-1/4 tsp. crushed hot chilis

1. Heat 1 tbsp. oil in large frying pan over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking. Add ingredients and stir-fry until fragrant, about 1 min.

-1 1/2 cups sugar snap peas (1 pint clamshell you received) cut in 1-in pieces
-1 1/2 cups snow peas (1 pint) cut in 1-in pieces

2. Add and cook until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes.

-1 cup garden peas (your 1 pint garden peas, shelled)

3. Add and stir-fry until hot, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat.

-1tsp. soy sauce
-tsp. sesame seed oil

4. Stir in. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and salt to taste. Serve immediately.

* Also great with greens such as kale, swiss chard or spinach. Drizzle with olive oil before serving.

Stay tuned for next week, where we will hopefully have some cute little tomatoes and cucumbers. Also, our Farm Share packing staff (who has been doing a fabulous job by the way as she learns many new skills) shares a family recipe for Greek salad as it was meant to be.

Hope you relish the joy of raw, untainted foods and the company of people you love this week!