CSA Newsletter Week 18

newsletter with photo

We woke Saturday morning to a brief break in the rain, and used the hour to harvest this week’s winter squash. I cut them from the vines and loaded them into bins Mark carried from the garden to the root cellar and garage. Next Mark chopped a few more of the huge rounds he’d sawed off of a tree that came down a year ago into pieces that would fit in our wood stove. I loaded the wheelbarrow to stack them in the courtyard, knowing I had the easier job with that task, too. rain

But then! We went to a coffee shop in the morning, napped and read in the afternoon, and enjoyed the warmth for the fire, tea, and potato soup and cornbread in the evening. A truly delightful, restorative day.

A gift from the rain.

And I suppose having to cancel the potluck is a gift of another sort–unexpected time on Sunday afternoon and evening, even if it means not being able to gather with you all.

Here’s to finding gifts hidden in this long, wet rain…

From Field to Market

Speckled Hound, Blue Hubbard, or Baby Blue Hubbard Squash
Super Sweet Corn
Assorted greens (chard, collards & kale)
Turnips, Fennel
Broccoli florets
Beets
Spanish Onions
Summer Squash Varieties (what’s left)
Blue Lake Pole Beans
Fortex Heirloom Beans
Last of the Tomatoes
Marketmore, Diva, & Lemon Cucumbers
Cabbage
Assorted Peppers
Eggplant
Leeks
Watermelon
Mint & Sage
Gourds

Assorted Gourds

Assorted Gourds

New from the Fields

Leeks give us onions all winter long, but they start getting big enough to harvest in the fall. We want you all to be introduced to them, so we’re harvesting some, even if they are a bit on the smaller side. Use these as you would onions that you saute. They have a creamier texture than onions, and are milder, and make a wonderful addition to potato soup (or any soup) and sauteed vegetables.

Gourds: just to be clear, gourds are decorative only–and not for eating. That’s not to say they haven’t been put to good use for thousands of years. Gourds have been carved, hollowed out, painted and etched since forever. Some gourds make great bird houses, others bowls and cups. So while every year it may seem an extravagance of space and energy to grow both big pumpkins and gourds–we are joining people since time memorial who have loved these funky, colorful celebrations of fall! They will last all the way through Thanksgiving–adorning inside or outside your home, or tucked into baskets of goodness you are giving away.

Speckled Hound & Baby Blue Hubbard

Speckled Hound & Baby Blue Hubbard

Speckled Hound and Blue Hubbard squashes taste a lot like a Butternut Squash. Chris (one of our members) says Hubbard is his absolute favorite, and since he gave me the plant from which we derived that most hugest of the garden squashes–he will get to take it home after you all guess it’s weight this week. Mostly we planted Baby Blue Hubbard squashes, which are less overwhelming and taste just as good. Both of the squashes we’re introducing these week have an inedible tough skin and rich, orange meat. These squash will both last 6 months, especially if you keep them in your garage–someplace dry–that gets neither too hot, nor freezes. Do not waste space in your fridge for these–but take them home and know you have all fall and winter to find good ways to cook them up.

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Baking Tips and Recipes:

Baking Winter Squash: (I went over this once, but a refresher seems like a good idea).
Cut squash in half lengthwise and remove the seeds and stringy stuff. Roast cut side down (about 350) for 30 minutes or so until you can pierce it easily with a fork. Cut into slivers and peel when cool enough to handle. At that point, add a bit of butter, maybe brown sugar or honey and eat it, or cut into cubes and add to stews, OR steam further on the stovetop by putting some water in a covered pot with the cubes and cooking they pieces are soft enough to be mashed. Drain well, mash and eat as above, or at this point use them in pies or breads. ALTERNATIVELY: I roast until the squash is quite soft, and skip the pan steaming and blend the squash well with a mixer or food processor. That way I’m not introducing more water to the squash. You can also start a recipe with raw squash, like the recipe for butternut squash soup below.

Gingery Butternut Squash (substitute any winter squash) from Simply in Season. Serves 4.

In large soup pot saute 2 chopped onions and 2 Tbsp. fresh ginger (peeled and minced) in 1 Tbsp. oil until onion is translucent.

Add to pot and bring to a boil:
2 apples (peeled, seeded and chopped)
1 butternut squash (peeled, seeded, and cut into cubes–or use 2 c. cooked winter squash)
4 c. broth (chicken or vegetable)

Reduce heat and simmer until squash and apples are tender. Use an immersion blender or puree in blender until smooth. Salt and pepper to taste and garnish with chopped fresh parsley.

 

 

 

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