Mark and I took 24 hours away at the coast. I’m writing from a little table in the living room of the Arch Cape Inn and Retreat and listening to the waves do what they’ve done since the beginning. We took a long walk on the beach this morning and found a smooth black rock that looks just like an egg (it will be in the Market this week) and yesterday hiked in the forests and along the beaches of Ecola State Park. We ate wonderful salads, and a roasted eggplant, tomato, and cheese dish at the Sweet Basil Cafe last night under lighted trees on the patio.
We have resolved to do this more often–maybe as often as once a month. We can’t hardly imagine it!
On that note, its about time we told the rest of you what we have told some of you already. Next year we are giving the land and the farmers at Fern Creek a sabbath rest. This is the 7th year of the Fern Creek Farm CSA, so we are one year late, but more ready for a sabbath rest this year than last anyway. We’ll be sowing a cover crop in the fields, but will still plant a small garden in the Hazelnut Patch for us, and will still have the U-Pick for you all. There will be more strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, and likely some blueberries available next year, and more apples, plums, and pears, both because trees and vines will be more mature and because we won’t have CSA crates to fill with fruit. We may offer U-Pick fruit shares, and are thinking that through and will keep you posted on how to sign up if you want in on that.
At any rate, we want you to know early enough to get in on other CSA opportunities knowing they can be hard to come by, and to thank you again for your loyal and wonderful support over the last seven years. We will miss the community part of what we do a lot, and may have to find some new ways to create that.
Anticipated in the Market
Black Futzu Pumpkin
Yukon Gold Potatoes
Delectable Sweet Corn
Kale (Dinosaur, Red Russian & Meadowlark)
Zucchini Squash & Summer Squash
Tromboncino & Patty Pan
Marketmore and Green Finger Cucumbers
Copia, Pineapple, & Rose de Berne Tomatoes
Yellow Pear, Indigo, Matt’s Wild, & Snow White Cherry Tomatoes
Black Beauty & de la Guardia Eggplant
Dill & Chives
Pick One or Two
Blue Lake, Yellow Wax, & Fortex Beans
Red Express & Green Cabbage
Walla Walla Onions
New from the Field
Futzu is a Japanese heirloom pumpkin that makes a great table decoration through Thanksgiving and then is as tasty as it is funky looking, with a flavor similar to sweet pumpkin or butternut.You can eat it anytime, though, and don’t have to use it as a decoration at all. The skin changes color from green to dusky gray to dusky orange, but the squash is sweet and ready now. Like all winter squashes and pumpkins, these will keep well for several months. No need to refrigerate them–your garage would be a fine place to store winter squash until you use them, unless you want to put them on display on your front porch or your dining room table. Bake them whole, or cut them in half first, scoop out the seeds and roast as you do other winter squash. Because of its knarly skin, I find it easier to bake this pumpkin with the skin and then cut it off afterwards.
Parsnips look kind of like a carrot, and are related to them, but are whitish instead of orange. Like carrots, they have a sweetness that is enhanced significantly after the first frost. Parsnips have a nutty, earthy flavor and are great roasted, mashed, added to soups, or tossed with other roasted vegetables. Below I’ve given some ideas of how to use them.
Recipe for the Week
Tis the season for soup making–or nearly so–it seems warm weather is lasting nicely to the end of September. Still, I recommend the Fennel and Carrot soup in From Asparagus to Zucchini, to those who might have a fennel lurking in the back of your fridge. It is delicious. But knowing most of you don‘t, here’s a soup recipe I posted a couple years ago that is also delicious and a great way to use parsnips. Remember that you can also roast parsnips along with other vegetables, make Parsnip Fries, or use them in other soups and stews.