Beet Box Archive

Week 21 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 21 from Valley Flora! Savoy Cabbage! Spaghetti Squash!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
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What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • Don't be Scared...it's just a SPAGHETTI SQUASH!
  • A Word about Winter Squash
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Yellow Onions
  • Head Lettuce
  • Carrots
  • Tomatoes
  • Savoy Cabbage
  • Red Potatoes
  • Cilantro
  • Spaghetti squash
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Radishes
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Onions
  • Carrots
  • Radicchio
  • Lettuce
  • Collards
  • Tomatoes?
  • Celery?
  • Hakurei Turnips
  • Acorn Squash
  • Pie Pumpkin
  • Fennel

  •  
Don't be Scared...
This week everyone is getting a spaghetti squash, some of which might fill half your tote and weigh more than your cat, but don't be afraid! Spaghetti squash is maybe the easiest of all the winter squashes to handle, in part because the main way you handle it is pretty hands off: just bake it whole. Aside from piercing it with a knife a few times so it doesn't explode in your oven or pressure cooker, you don't have to risk life and limb try to peel, hack, slice and dice and get it recipe-ready. And if you're afraid to even stab the thing once or twice, pop it into your microwave for 5 minutes to soften it and then pierce it with a sharp-tipped knife. That is, if you can fit it in your microwave...

But speaking of recipes, there are lots of exciting ideas for how to eat a spaghetti squash, more everyday in this new gluten-free era.

If you belong to the Instant Pot or pressure cooker club, this is a pretty clever way to make "spaghetti" and sauce all in the same pot, in under an hour:
https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/one-pot-turkey-bolognese-with-spaghetti

If you are a sucker for fritters (my hand is in the air right now), then try these:
https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/spaghetti-squash-fritters

And if you love salami and cheese like a good Italian should, this might be right up your alley:
https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/cheesy-baked-spaghetti-squash-boats-with-salami-sundried-tomatoes-and-spinach

It seem like most recipes calling for spaghetti squash use it as a vehicle for cheese, tomato sauce, and other delights. But you know, they also taste pretty good on their own if you want to just cook it naked and keep it simple.
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A Word (or two) About Winter Squash
I haven't given squash season it's proper introduction like I usually do. I assume a lot of you are familiar with winter squash and adept at handling them, but on the off chance that they're an entirely new kitchen adventure for you, here are a few tips:
  • Store your squash on the counter, or somewhere cool and dark with good airflow. Not in the fridge, unless you cut one in half and save some of it to cook with later. Most varieties of squash will store for weeks, if not months. The last variety you'll receive in December - Tetsu - could keep for over a year. I just had a CSA member from last year send me a picture of her 2018 Tetsu, cut in half and still perfect inside.
  • Squash skin is edible, but not necessarily palatable. The exception is Delicata, which has a thin enough skin it doesn't interfere with your eating enjoyment too much. That said, I tend to peel even my Delicatas in order to enjoy the smooth texture to its fullest. Acorns are tough to peel due to their hard ribs, so I mostly cook them in their shell.
  • When cutting into uncooked squash, be careful! If you have a microwave you can precook them for 5 minutes to soften them up and then go at it with the knife. I'm confident with a knife and we don't have a microwave, so my approach is usually:
    1. Peel with a peeler, if it's a peeling type (butternut, delicata, sunshine)
    2. Using my big kitchen knife with the sharpest, pointiest tip, I insert the tip of the knife into the belly of the squash and then carefully work the blade of the knife around the middle of the squash to cleave it in half.
    3. Once I've halved the squash, I scoop out the seeds and put the cut side down on the cutting board so it's stable. Then I slice and dice into whatever shape/size I'm after.
  • If it's a spaghetti, acorn, pie pumpkin or Tetsu, I skip the peeling step but do everything else the same.
And finally, if you want a quick read about winter squash in general - and a guide to all the different kinds - check out this link:
https://www.epicurious.com/ingredients/a-visual-guide-to-winter-squash-varieties-article

You won't see all of those varieties from us this fall, but we have grown all of them over the course of the past decade. We've narrowed our squash lineup down to the varieties that taste the best, store the best and yield the best on our farm. I hope you like them!

 
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October Farmstand Hours
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
10 am to 1 pm

Fresh Produce
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


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Week 20 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 20 from Valley Flora! Romanesco! Nijiseiki! Sunshine Squash!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
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What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • Fall Faves: Romanesco, Nijiseiki Asian Pears & Sunshine Squash
  • Last Week of Salad Shares
  • Tamales this Week!
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Red Onions
  • Head Lettuce
  • Carrots
  • Tomatoes
  • Romanesco
  • Nijiseiki Asian Pears
  • Sweet Peppers
  • Beets
  • Hakurei Turnips
  • Sunshine Squash
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Onions
  • Carrots
  • Savoy Cabbage
  • Lettuce
  • Apples
  • Tomatoes
  • Peppers?
  • Hot Peppers
  • Spaghetti Squash
  • Potatoes
  • Fennel?
  • Radishes?

  •  
Fall Faves
No, you are not hallucinating. It's just romanesco cauliflower, in all it's awesome fractal amazing-ness! It also happens to be my favorite fall Brassica: better than broccoli, better than cauliflower, better than Brussels sprouts. We've had CSA members in year's past who couldn't bear to eat it because it was too cool to look at, so here's the solution: get out your phone, take a bunch of pics - maybe some selfies with you and the romanesco together - and then cut into that puppy! I like to try to preserve those minaret-styled florets in their entirety when I disassemble the head - purely for aesthetic reasons - but no matter how you slice it, it's still going to taste fantastic tossed with some olive oil and salt and roasted until crispy-tender in the oven.

Cousin to last week's Chojuro, you're getting Nijiseiki Asian Pears this week. They are light and bright and juicy and refreshing. Not quite as intensely flavored as the Chojuro, but a lot of people prefer them for their tender texture and juiciness. They're easy eating.

Some of you veteran CSA members might recognize the scarlet-orange squash in your share this week called Sunshine. We grew Sunshine in the early years and it was one of our favorites - definitely one of the top three most popular (Delicata, Butternut and Sunshine). We relied on it as our Thanksgiving squash because it stored well, the already-delicious flavor got even more delicious in storage, and you could stuff it like a turkey! But then one year we went to pack the Thanksgiving shares and most of the Sunshine squash had rot spots. We were crestfallen! We grew it another year but had the same problem. We finally gave up on it and have been trialing replacements ever since. The problem is, there just isn't a scarlet kabocha that tastes quite as good or is as pretty to look at. So, this year I decided we'd bring it back and simply give it out sooner, before it gave up the ghost in storage. Nobody at OSU can tell us why it's succumbing to storage rot so much more easily now, but it seems to be a problem ubiquitous to most farms in our network throughout the state.

One of the best things about Sunshine is it's versatility. It has an almost tropical flavor and nice dry firmness when cooked, which makes it a fantastic centerpiece in curry. For soup, I often reach for Sunshine before Butternut. In my pressure cooker, I'll saute up some leeks, drop in a cubed, peeled Sunshine squash, add a couple cans of coconut milk and some water, add a little salt, lock the lid in place, and we have soup for dinner 6 minutes later. You can also make pie with them, or just bake them and eat them as-is (butter always welcome).
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Last Week of Salad Shares
This is the 20th and final week of Abby's Greens Salad Shares. Salad will continue to be available in the coming weeks at the farmstand and various outlets (Port Orford Community Co-op, Langlois Market, Mother's Natural Grocery, Coos Head Food Co-op). Many thanks to Abby for her tireless dedication to producing the most beautiful salad greens in the world!
Tamales this Week!
Tamales are going out in marked coolers this week. Please double check the tags on the bags and make sure you are taking home the dozen labeled for you. Enjoy!
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October Farmstand Hours
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
10 am to 1 pm

Fresh Produce
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


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Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Week 19 from Valley Flora

Beet Box -

Week 19 from Valley Flora Asian Pears & Winter Squash!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
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What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • Winter Squash, with a Caveat...
  • Asian Pears!
  • New Farmstand Hours Start this Week!
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Yellow Onions
  • Head Lettuce
  • Carrots
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Kale
  • Sweet Peppers
  • Cilantro
  • Asian Pears
  • Winter Squash
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Nothing this week...
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Onions
  • Carrots
  • Romanesco
  • Lettuce
  • Apples?
  • Tomatoes
  • Peppers?
  • Hot Peppers
  • Winter Squash
  • Beets
  • Potatoes
  • Radishes?
Winter Squash, with a Caveat...
We’re putting the first winter squash of the season in your totes this week, but there's a caveat. We trialed two new varieties of Delicata and one new variety of Butternut this year, all of which came out of the field two weeks ago. All three varieties were highly acclaimed and we’ve been excited to try them. But we’ve been dismayed to discover that while they’ve been curing in our greenhouse the past two weeks they’ve developed skin defects that are going to significantly shorten their storage life. Butternut and Delicata make up about half of our squash crop - because everyone loves them so much - so losing these varieties in storage would be a big hit. 
 
I took a gamble today and decided to send out our “ugly squash” this week, in hopes that you will use them ASAP and forgive us their leper looks! It chafed against every cell in my body to put ugly squash in your totes - especially for our kickoff winter squash week - but I think the eating quality is still good and I’d rather you have ugly, tasty squash than no squash at all. 
 
I’ve cut into dozens of them to see how deep the damage is and feel pretty confident that everything that is going out this week is afflicted only skin-deep. The butternuts will make great soup, and the delicatas should roast up nicely - all with the help of a peeler or a good sharp knife to take the skin off. After this round, you should see nothing but good-looking squash in your share!
 
And in case you’re worried, we’ve been handling the squash for two weeks and the leprosy doesn’t seem to be contagious. :)

(And I suppose if it is, well then we can all have a raucous party in our leper colony together, feasting on ugly butternuts till the cows come home…)
 
Thanks for your understanding. I hope you can see past their flawed exterior to the true beauty within.
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Asian Pears
A little gift from the orchard this week: everyone is getting my all-time favorite Asian Pear variety, Chojuro. It has a copper glow to the skin and tastes about as close to butterscotch candy as anything I've encountered in nature, only better. I like to keep my asian pears in the fridge so they retain their crisp texture and juiciness. I have a certain addiction to slicing them up and dredging them through hazlenut butter. Something about that combo sends me.
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New Farmstand Hours Starting October 2nd!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
10 am to 1 pm

Fresh Produce
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Week 18 from Valley Flora

Beet Box -

Week 18 from Valley Flora Happy Fall!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
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What's Cookin' at the Farm...
 
  • Pivot to Fall
  • Dry Farm Potatoes
  • Eggplant Chips
  • Farmstand Hours Change Next Wednesday
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Leeks
  • Head Lettuce
  • Carrots
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Potatoes
  • Sweet Peppers
  • Broccoli
  • Celery
  • Onions
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Nothing this week...
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Onions
  • Carrots
  • Kale
  • Lettuce
  • Eggplant
  • Tomatoes
  • Peppers
  • Hot Peppers?
  • Winter Squash
  • Broccoli?
  • Cauliflower?
Pivot to Fall
Nothing to prove the autumnal equinox like a Harvest Basket peppered with leeks, potatoes and celery! Happy Fall, it's soup time!

I'd say that fall has arrived gloriously, and to the sound of lawnmowers! The grass is growing again - luxuriantly - which makes all of our rancher friends and neighbors very happy. All the rain might have juicied-up this week's celery stalks as well. Celery loves water, and actually gets twice as much of it as any other crop on our farm through weekly irrigation. Even so, we've never managed to grow heads of celery that are quite as big and juicy as the ones you'll find in the produce aisle at the store. Maybe it takes four times as much water to grow something like that...No matter, what might be lacking in fat ribs is definitely made up for in flavor with our celery. In the past we've opted to harvest stalks and bunch them for you, leaving the plant to continue growing in the field. We scrapped that idea this year because it meant you never got the best part of the celery - the heart! This year we're logging whole heads instead, so get out your soup recipes, buy some cream cheese or nut butter (ants on a log anyone?), or make some homemade dip and get crunching!

You do have the key ingredients for potato leek soup this week, as well as some of the ingredients for one of my favorite, easy, amazing meals of all time, Sicilian Fish Stew.
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Dry Farm Potatoes
We've continued our dry farming trials with OSU this year after fairly good results from our tomato and squash experiments last year. In analyzing the 2018 data, OSU discovered that we had the highest yields of any trial site in their dry farming cohort, most likely due to the fact that it's cooler here in the summer than their other sites in the Willamette Valley. In the absence of irrigation, our plants probably experience less heat stress overall. We replicated the squash and tomato experiments again this year, and also participated in a potato trial. Most of the potatoes going out this week are from the dry farm plot, where we've had upwards of ten varieties growing since June. On the whole, the potatoes are smaller than those in our irrigated patch and some varieties have some ugly skin defects, which meant a lot of potatoes went to the food bank this week! Let us know how they taste!
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Eggplant Chips
I've been impressed by our CSA members this past month. Every week I've encountered someone who has shared some new, creative eggplant-coping strategy. One family pre-bakes rounds of eggplant and then uses them as mini pizza crusts (their kids love it!). Some of you have made epic quantities of eggplant parm and frozen it (and sent me tantalizing photos of it, when can I come over for dinner?!). Eggplant brownies, baba ganoush, and some of you are simply keeping up with the weekly share and are excited for more. This weekend I met a CSA member who might just take the eggplant cake. I was riding horseback out near Floras Lake and encountered a couple of hikers who immediately swooned over the horses. As we got to talking she told us she was an ex-endurance rider turned avid backpacker, and lo and behold she is a first-time CSA member this year! She told me how much she loves the CSA but immediately commented on how she had first struggled with the eggplant until a friend, fellow backpacker and veteran CSA member turned her on to eggplant chips. She dries rounds of eggplant in her food dehydrator with a little balsamic vinegar and salt until they're crispy. She says they're delicious, great dipped in hummus, and an awesome trail food. Eggplant production is slowing down but I'm going to have to try making a batch before it's too late!
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New Farmstand Hours Starting October 2nd!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
10 am to 1 pm

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Week 17 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 17 from Valley Flora!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
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What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • Cover Crop Season
  • Valley Flora Back on the Road!
  • Special Order Sweet Peppers
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Red Onions
  • Head Lettuce
  • Carrots
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Sweet Corn
  • Sweet Peppers
  • Fennel
  • Rainbow Chard
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Nothing this week...
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Leeks
  • Carrots
  • Potatoes
  • Cauliflower?
  • Parsley
  • Lettuce
  • Eggplant
  • Tomatoes
  • Peppers
  • Hot Peppers
Cover Crop Season: Second Spring
September and October are our biggest, most important months for cover cropping. We grow cover crops in the summer as well - heat-loving species like buckwheat and sudan grass and phacelia that get tilled into our soil as green manure throughout the summer. But right now is the moment that matters the most, when we seed most of the farm into overwintering cover crops that will protect our soil through the winter and give it a boost of organic matter and nutrients in the spring. It's a bit of a dance because a lot of the farm is still covered in cash crops that have to be removed before the cover crops can be seeded in their stead. It means that we are using every sunny, dry moment between these early September storms to harvest winter squash, dry beans, popcorn, and potatoes and get them into storage. Once the cash crop is cleared, the drip lines rolled up and the crop residue disked in with the horses, we broadcast various cover crop mixes of our own making and then roll them in with our horsedrawn cultipacker (a big heavy set of metal rollers that packs the seed into the soil and gives good soil-to-seed contact for higher germination). Most of our cover crop mixes include three to four different species, including a grain or grass for high biomass production (rye, oats, triticale) and legumes for nitrogen fixation (clover, peas, vetch). What gets planted where depends on where various cash crops are going next season in our extensive crop rotation on the farm. It's a really fun puzzle to solve each year.

Over the past few years I've also been doing more and more inter-seeding of cover crops among cash crops. Our field of fall and winter Brassicas is notoriously hard to get into cover crop before it's too late (mid to late October is the deadline for successful germination on most species). We'll be harvesting from that field from now until next May, leaving no window to broadcast seed. The solution has been inter-seeding, where I drill in a few lines of cover crop between the cash crop rows before the cauliflower, broccoli and cabbage plants fill in completely (see pictures above and below). They grow up together and then once the cash crop has been harvested the cover crop continues to grow and fill in, providing important cover through the winter.

I love this work, knowing that it's the most important thing I can do for the soil health of our farm, and because it's all about harnessing up the team and falling into rhythm with my horses. And then, like magic - and with a little help from some well-timed rain - the whole farm turns from brown to various shades of green again as it grows its coat for winter in a beautiful second spring.
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Valley Flora Back on the Road!
You may or may not remember that the timing chain broke on our delivery van way back in early June. What you probably didn't know is that we've had to rent U-hauls every week all summer to get the food delivered. But hallelujah, we finally got our van back last night, a big relief after too many stressful and expensive weeks in mechanical limbo. It seems like there's always something each season - be it irrigation pumps, walk-in coolers, or vehicles - but after this ordeal we're hoping we've paid our break-down dues forward a few years :). We're happy to be back on the road again.
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Special Order Sweet Peppers!
Pepper fans! It's
your moment! Sweet peppers are available right now and they won't be around forever, so get yourself some peppers to freeze, roast, pickle, and eat like popsicles! They are super easy to put up for winter: just chop and freeze, no extra steps. You can email Bets, the Grand Poobah of Pepper Production, and give her your NAME, PICKUP SITE, PHONE NUMBER and the QUANTITY and TYPE of PEPPER you want! They are $22 for 5 pounds, and you can choose from Stocky Red Roasters (that's the red Italian type pepper in your share this week) or a mix of her various roasters: Stocky, Gypsy, and Glow (the orange pepper in your share).
 
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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
9 am to 2 pm

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Week 16 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 16 from Valley Flora! Napa Cabbage & Cipollinis!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
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What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • Mid-September Bounty!
  • Ratatouille Time
  • Sweet Peps - Get 'em Before They're Gone!
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Cipollini Onions
  • Head Lettuce
  • Carrots
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Dill
  • Sweet Corn
  • Sweet Peppers
  • Melons
  • Napa Cabbage
  • Beets
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Zucchini
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Onions
  • Carrots
  • Chard
  • Corn?
  • Parsley?
  • Lettuce
  • Potatoes
  • Celery?
  • Fennel?
  • Zucchini
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Peppers
Mid-September Bounty
This is always one of my favorite totes of the season: when the napa cabbage shows up alongside the sweet peppers and the cipollini onions. If you haven't had cipollinis before you're in for a treat. They are by far the most pungent onion we grow, so be prepared for a cry-fest when you cut into them. And though the tears will be flowing mightily, don't be deterred: get them cut up and into a frying pan with some olive oil. Cook them down until they're soft and carmelized and then behold the wonder! How can something that was making you cry 10 minutes ago turn into something so richly sweet!? (I thought only young love was like that.) So be warned, chances are you'll find yourself leaned over the pan spooning them into your mouth with abandon, screw the rest of the recipe you were following that began with "sautee the onions..." 
Semi-flattened gold cipollinis, mil grazie Italia!
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Ratatouille
Speaking of recipes you should or shouldn't be following, there is one thing that you really should be making right now, and that's ratatouille. I'm a half-beat behind in suggesting this because the zucchini is pretty much over as of this week, but it doesn't really matter because you can make ratatouille with any combination of late summer veggies, like for instance eggplant :), and also tomatoes, peppers, onions, even corn.

Ratatouille was a late summer staple in our house when I was growing up. My mom would make a big pot of it from the garden harvest and then freeze the leftover for winter meals. We usually ate it atop polenta, but you can team it up with pasta, any kind of grain or rice, alongside chicken or fish, with eggs, or eat it straight. If it's your first time making it, you might want to follow a recipe but you can also free-form ratatouille pretty easily. Also keep in mind that you if you're shy on zukes but rich in eggplant this week, just substitute. You might need more tomatoes than you have in this week's tote (the tomato yields have been disappointing for us this year), but those are pretty easy to come by in early September. Maybe your SunOrange cherry tomato plant is pumping out little candy bomb fruits by now? Yes? Toss them in!
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Special Order Sweet Peppers!
Pepper fans! It's
your moment! Sweet peppers are available right now and they won't be around forever, so get yourself some peppers to freeze, roast, pickle, and eat like popsicles! They are super easy to put up for winter: just chop and freeze, no extra steps. You can email Bets, the Grand Poobah of Pepper Production, and give her your NAME, PICKUP SITE, PHONE NUMBER and the QUANTITY and TYPE of PEPPER you want! They are $22 for 5 pounds, and you can choose from Stocky Red Roasters (that's the red Italian type pepper in your share this week) or a mix of her various roasters: Stocky, Gypsy, and Glow (the orange pepper in your share).
 
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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
9 am to 2 pm

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Week 15 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 15 from Valley Flora! Melon this Week!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
-->

What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • Sweet September: Melons!
  • Eggplant Inspiration
  • Tamales this Week
  • Special Order Sweet Peppers
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Red Onions
  • Cucumbers
  • Head Lettuce
  • Carrots
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Zucchini
  • Sweet Corn
  • Sweet Peppers
  • Hot Peppers
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Cilantro
  • Basil
  • Dill
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Onions
  • Carrots
  • Cucumbers?
  • Corn?
  • Dill or Cilantro
  • Lettuce
  • Napa Cabbage?
  • Zucchini
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Peppers
Sweet September: Melons!
You might notice the absence of strawberries in your tote this week - the first time since June 10th. The picking gets slow this time of year - too slow for it to pencil out for us - so we are giving the berry patch over to the u-pickers and celebrating the arrival of a whole new ball of sugar: melon time! Abby's favorite cantaloupe, "Sarah's Choice," ripened up for us this week to soften the strawberry blow. And what a consolation prize it is! Fragrant, juicy, delicious, and quasi-miraculous given how close we are to the coast. This variety has risen to the top after years of Abby trialing and taste-testing dozens of different melons on the farm.
Sarah's Choice making us all grin at lunchtime...
The melons are a godsend because September is always bittersweet. Bitter as our kids return to school, like the songbirds flying south, and the farm becomes empty of their joyful soundtrack. Bitter as certain beloved summer crops, like cucumbers and strawberries, are on the wane and signs of senescence are all around: powdery mildew in the squash, potato vines dying back, a chill in the creek. And then, thank goodness, the sweet: melons, the promise of a good harvest of Delicata squash in a couple weeks, the orchard heavy with apples and Asian pears in the slanted evening light. It's always heart-breakingly beautiful at this time of year, moreso than other months - I suppose because we know subconsciously that the summer days are numbered.

But not to worry, Fall will rescue us from our end-of-summer melancholy, always in the nick of time, and I will remember how much I relish lighting the woodstove and making soup again.
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Eggplant Inspiration
I recognize that it's that time of year when some of you are struggling with eggplant. I personally made 4 large eggplants disappear on Monday night while making dinner for my family, so I'll admit I have to dig deep to walk a mile in an eggplant-haters shoes. That said, even though I can't really understand what it's like to be you, I CAN offer some extra support to help get you through this trying time. Here are a few ideas to survive the seasonal onslaught (BTW, we really did plant 33% fewer eggplant this year, but alas....):
  1. Recipes. It's not just about eggplant parm. Have you tried Baba Ganoush yet? Here's a self-described "epic" recipe for it, and it's totally freezable for later when there is zero eggplant in your life. Or this from a fellow CSA member: Grilled Eggplant with Harissa Vinaigrette. But my all-time favorite creative eggplant disappearing act is eggplant brownies. Really. Just google it. A CSA member turned us on to them last season when everyone was really getting buried in aubergine (you thought 4 eggplant was a lot.....). The creaminess of the eggplant makes for a moist, amazing brownie, and you get to claim a serving of vegetables while eating dessert.
  2. The Barter/Gift Economy. I know for a fact that there are a lot of eggplant fanatics in our CSA ranks, so if brownies can't even convince you to take your eggplant home, offer them up to a fellow member - perhaps in trade for some corn this week? You'll make someone's day.
  3. Remember, like all things Valley Flora, this too shall pass. Seasonality is our middle name. Hang in there. :)
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Tamales this Week
Tamales are going out in marked blue coolers this week. Be sure to take the bag that's labeled just for you! I'm thinking tamales with fresh sweet and hot peppers, tomatoes, onion, corn.....Mmmmmm-mmm.
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Special Order Sweet Peppers!
Pepper fans! It's time
to order bulk sweet peppers! You can email Bets, the Grand Poobah of Pepper Production, and give her your NAME, PICKUP SITE, PHONE NUMBER and the QUANTITY and TYPE of PEPPER you want! They are $22 for 5 pounds, and you can choose from Stocky Red Roasters (that's the red Italian type pepper in your share this week) or a mix of her various roasters: Stocky, Gypsy, and Glow (the orange pepper in your share).
 
-->
The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
9 am to 2 pm

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Week 14 from Valley Flora

Beet Box -

Week 14 from Valley Flora Pepperpalooza!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
-->



What's Cookin' at the Farm...
 
  • Halfway!
  • Sweet Peppers are On!
  • And the U-Pick Just Keeps Giving...
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Walla Walla Sweet Onions
  • Cucumbers
  • Head Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Carrots
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Zucchini
  • Collards
  • Sweet Peppers
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Heirloom Tomatoes
  • Green Beans
  • Cilantro
  • Basil
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Onions
  • Carrots
  • Cucumbers
  • Corn
  • Basil or Dill
  • Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Zucchini
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Peppers
  • Hot Peppers
Halfway!
The totes are a little lighter this week, whew. I'm guessing most of you could use a small reprieve after last week's wheelbarrow full of produce (I hope no one sustained any back injuries lugging their veggies home...).

This week marks the tipping point into the second half of our CSA season: 14 weeks down, 14 more to go. Some of my favorite things begin to show up in the coming month, like sweet peppers! melons! more corn! The confluence of summer and fall makes for the best eating of the whole year, always. And for those of you who think the CSA season couldn't possibly go all the way into December, this is your reminder to mark you calendars: the final week of the CSA will be the week of December 2nd (December 4th for Coos Bay and the Farm, December 7th for Bandon and Port Orford).
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Sweet Peppers are On!
Which means two things if you are me:
  1. Eat as many peppers as humanly possible, for as long as possible, everyday while they are in season.
  2. Order yourself a bulk batch of peppers so you can continue to eat as many peppers as humanly possible, including all winter (in frozen, roasted and pickled form). To do so email Bets, the Grand Poobah of Pepper Production, and give her your NAME, PICKUP SITE, PHONE NUMBER and the QUANTITY and TYPE of PEPPER you want! They are $22 for 5 pounds, and you can choose from Stocky Red Roasters (that's the red Italian type pepper in your share this week) or a mix of Stocky, Gypsy (pictured below), and Glow (the orange pepper in your share).
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And the U-Pick Just Keeps Giving!
We opened up another couple beds to u-pick today, making for the most u-pick space of the whole season. There is still a lot of fruit coming out of the field, red and ripe and sweet! Take note that the late summer and fall strawberries always have a shorter shelf life, so we recommend either keeping them refrigerated or putting them in your freezer or jam pot right away. With school starting next week, we anticipate less traffic in the u-pick patch, which means the fruit should be ample and the crowds a little thinner.
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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
9 am to 2 pm

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Week 13 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 13 from Valley Flora! Oh-so-sweet Sweet Corn!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
-->



What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • Heavy: Corn, Sweet Peppers, and Beautiful Annina
  • Pickling Cukes Still Pumping!
-->
What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Red Onions
  • Cucumbers
  • Head Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Carrots
  • Beets
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Zucchini
  • Parsely
  • Potatoes
  • Sweet Corn
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Heirloom Tomatoes
  • Romano Green Beans
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Onions
  • Carrots
  • Cucumbers
  • Collards?
  • Cilantro or Basil?
  • Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Zucchini
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Peppers
Heavy
I was compelled to weigh a packed Harvest Basket yesterday and it bottomed out our twenty-pound spring dial scale. I grabbed the forty pound digital scale instead and it read 25 pounds, which means about 22.7 pounds of produce is stuffed into one of those little Rubbermaids for you this week. Poor Amelia and Evan, our delivery angels! Lucky you.

Blame it on August, I guess. Some big fat ears of corn ripened up this week - a white variety called "Illusion." Super duper sweet. They also might be harboring a little surprise when you shuck them: corn earworm. I've never seen earworm so early on the farm; if we get it at all it's usually in our last planting, not our first. It's a harmless but gross grub that is simply trying to fatten up to become a nondescript brown moth (which happens to also have a voracious appetite for tomatoes and cotton). If you find any, just cut the tip off the corn and you're good to go. If you have a flock of chickens, they love a nice fat earworm snack.
Fun Farm Factoid of the Week: the nocturnal moths lay eggs on the corn silks and when they hatch the larva start feeding on the corn kernels, usually a little herd of of them pigging out together. But alas, they are aggressive and cannibalistic so in the end you usually just see one juicy earworm at the tip of your corn, with a belly full of other earworms. Kinda makes you glad to not be an earworm.
On top of the mountain of sweet corn and beets and potatoes and cukes and zucchini, Bets surprised us in the barn yesterday with the first bin of sweet peppers. It's the beginning of "jelly bean" season, she calls it, when life revolves around bins of shiny red, orange, yellow, and purple fruits, whether they be peppers or tomatoes or plums.

And then, the eggplant. Some weekend heat equaled a nice harvest on Monday, including our first haul of lovely Annina, the striped eggplant pictured above. I swooned when I spotted her in the seed catalogue last winter - and even though I am steadfastly loyal to our workhorse Traviata (the dark purple variety you are used to getting), I had to buy a (very expensive) packet of Annina seed. We planted just one bed out of five and what I've observed so far is that she's a few weeks slower than Traviata and is a vigorous, large-statured, matronly plant. There are so many baby eggplants under her canopy of leaves right now it reminds me of a mother hen sitting on a clutch of eggs. Hopefully that means we'll be eating a lot of Annina in the coming weeks, because the first broiled slab I had was amazingly creamy and sweet. Not everyone will get a glimpse of Annina this week, but soon.
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The Pickling Cukes Won't Quit!
I figured they'd have given up the ghost by now, but no, those little picklers just keep coming! I hope some of you still want to try making a couple gallons of my favorite "Bubbies" pickle recipe, because I have cukes that want a nice glass jar to call home. Email me your name, pickup site, phone number, and the quantity and size you want. Smalls (perfect for pickling whole) are $3.50/lb; medium (pickle whole or in spears) $3.00/lb; and large (ideal for for bread and butter or dill slices) $2.50/pound.
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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
9 am to 2 pm

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Week 12 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 12 from Valley Flora! Sweet Corn On the Way!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
-->

What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • Onion Harvest!
  • August Corn!
-->
What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Walla Walla Sweet Onions
  • Cucumbers
  • Head Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Carrots
  • Rainbow Chard
  • Tomatoes
  • Hot Peppers
  • Zucchini
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Eggplant
  • Heirloom Tomatoes
  • Romano Green Beans
  • Sweet Corn
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Red Onions
  • Green Beans, on rotation
  • Carrots
  • Cucumbers
  • Beets
  • Lettuce
  • Sweet Corn, on rotation
  • Strawberries
  • Zucchini
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
  • Parsley
  • Potatoes
Onion Harvest!
These past two Wednesdays Roberto has been up to his elbows in onions. Our main crops of red and yellow storage onions, plus our shallots, started showing signs of full maturity last week: most obviously, the tops have keeled over and the bulbs have reached maximum rotundness. That's our cue to start pulling the onions so the curing process can begin. In the past we made long onion windrows on the bedtops where they could fully dry down in the field, but after one-too-many unexpected August rains we switched our strategy and started curing our onions in our propagation greenhouse. The greenhouse is mostly emptied out at this time of year leaving lots of vacant table space that's perfect for the curing process. Our new prop house is the ideal spot: it has great air circulation, retractable shade cloth that keeps the onions from getting too hot or sunburned, and is right next door to the packout and storage barn.

Once the tops are fully dried down we'll begin the process of cleaning all of the onions: trimming roots and tops and packing them into standard weight bins. It's the first thing to begin filling our fall/winter treasure chest of important storage crops. Squash and potatoes are not too far on their heels; soon the barn will be bulging at the seams and many tons heavier.
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August Corn!
The first elotes - ears of sweet corn - are making their way into some of the Harvest Baskets this week. I gotta say, that first bite of fresh corn is really hard to beat. I made an improvised meal of sauteed eggplant, zucchini, fennel, Walla Wallas, tomatoes and basil the other night, accompanied by the first ears of steamed corn and a pan of fried padron peppers. We sat around the table ruining a stick of butter with our corn, savoring and marveling and uttering our gratitude for August and all that it gives.

If you don't get corn this week, don't worry, it's coming soon. This first planting is slightly uneven and staggered, and because it's an early variety the ears are a bit smaller than they'll be in the coming weeks. It is sweeeeeet though! Enjoy!
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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
9 am to 2 pm

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Week 11 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 11 from Valley Flora! Potatoes are Here!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
-->



What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • New Potatoes
  • Tamales this Week
  • Bee Heaven
  • U-Pick Strawberries at their Best!
-->
What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Walla Walla Sweet Onions
  • Cucumbers
  • Head Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • New Potatoes
  • Rainbow Carrots
  • Tomatoes
  • Kale
  • Zucchini
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Eggplant
  • Heirloom Tomatoes
  • Romano Green Beans
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Onions
  • Green Beans, on rotation
  • Carrots
  • Cucumbers
  • Chard?
  • Lettuce
  • Sweet Corn?
  • Strawberries
  • Zucchini
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant
New Potatoes
The first spuds are showing up in your tote this week, an early red variety that are still "new," meaning their skins haven't set yet. New potatoes are noticeably juicier  and tender and should be stored in a plastic bag in your fridge. They'll keep for at least a few weeks there, but aren't meant for long-term storage.

Meanwhile, the rest of the spud patch is done flowering and all those tubers are busy fattening up for fall harvest. We'll dig the majority of our potatoes in September and October once the plants have died back and the skins have cured. You'll see potatoes in your share every few weeks from now until December, and for those of you who do the Winter CSA with us we'll have potatoes for you well into spring.
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Tamales this Week!
Tamales Shares are going out to all pick-up sites this week in marked blue coolers. If you are a tamale member, remember to check the tags on each bag and make sure you are taking home the dozen labeled just for YOU! ¡Buen aprovecho!
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Bee Heaven
Don't take this the wrong way but my highest passion is not growing food for all you humans; it's growing food for bees and our soil. :)

This summer we have almost an acre planted to Buckwheat (a quick-growing, drought-hardy, warm-weather annual with white flowers - yes the same buckwheat you make pancakes out of) and Phacelia (a lacy-leaved annual with striking spikes of purple flowers). Both of them are fantastic forage crops for bees and other beneficial insects and for the past five weeks I've been eagerly anticipating this moment when both are in full bloom. The field is a swath of lavender and white right now, but even more striking is the hum - the literal vibration - coming from that acre. The bees - and lots of other insects, too - are having a flower feast fit for a king.

It will be a short-lived party, unfortunately, because I have to transition the field into another cover crop in the next few days. But for this moment it's a sight and a sound to behold - and take lots of pictures of!
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Strawberry U-Pick at its Best!
Mama Mia, the strawberries! It's that moment in our berry season when they are abundantly abundant, deep deep red, holy smokes sweet, and the early summer crowds have thinned out! This past couple of weeks there have been ample strawberries from open to close on Wednesdays and Saturdays so you can enjoy a leisurely pick and maybe even take a nap in the clover while you're out there :)...

If you've been waiting, this is what you've been waiting for. Please remember to bring your own containers to take your berries home in. We have picking buckets but are always short on boxes.

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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
9 am to 2 pm

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Week 10 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 10 from Valley Flora! Eggplant! Hot Peppers!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
-->

What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • The Weekly Dance
  • Order Your Bulk Basil!
  • Pickling Cukes Are On!
-->
What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Walla Walla Sweet Onions
  • Cucumbers
  • Head Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Broccoli
  • Rainbow Carrots
  • Tomatoes
  • Basil
  • Zucchini
  • Fennel
  • Hot Peppers
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Eggplant
  • Heirloom Tomatoes
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Walla Walla Sweets
  • Broccoli?
  • Carrots
  • Cucumbers
  • Kale
  • Lettuce
  • New Potatoes
  • Strawberries
  • Zucchini
  • Tomatoes
Eggplant, Hot Peppers and Rainbow Carrots
Tuesdays and Fridays are a form of performance art on the farm. It starts early morning, each of us performing our various solos bunching greens, logging broccoli, cutting lettuce, and digging carrots to a soundtrack of birdsong. We come together as a strawberry-picking quartet mid-morning and once all the berries are harvested we migrate to the barn where - depending on what time it is - the choreography gets crazy. Stacks of produce roll in and out of the cooler, hoses blast, dunk tanks work overtime, scales are tared, boxes, bags and totes are filled brim-full, orders get labeled for stores and restaurants and the farmstand, the boom box blares. The crescendo builds as everything coalesces for CSA pack-out. Your weekly share - which until that point was something theoretical in my notebook - becomes tangible as we lay the tables with heaviest onions and broccoli at the top, and delicate tomatoes and basil at the end.

As that moment approached yesterday I began to get excited, realizing that it would be a beauty this week: the rainbow carrots, the deep dusky eggplant, the broccoli as big as dinner plates. We settled into the rhythm of pack-out, strategically layering  produce into each tote (the ultimate goal always to create a soft nest for those tomatoes at the end!). 

After the final tote is packed, every zucchini accounted for, the cooler organized and stacked to the ceiling, the tables put away, the floor swept - then, finally, there is a collective exhale and we exit one by one, stage left and right. Lights out until dawn when the next scene begins: farmstand set-up and deliveries.

This week you'll be eating all the colors of the rainbow, thanks to 5-hued carrots, dark purple eggplant, and more tomatoes. There are two hot peppers in the mix, a serrano (hot) and a big fat jalapeño (less hot). And you have all the ingredients to make a small batch of one of my favorite dishes: Finocchio. Happy Summer!
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Bulk Basil Available
If you'd like to order a bulk quantity to make your winter stash of pesto, email us your name, pickup location, phone number and the number of pounds you would like. It's $16/pound - all gorgeous tops with no stem.
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Bulk Pickling Cucumbers Available!
Our pickling cukes are going full throttle! Whether you love a good, tangy dill pickle or are fond of bread and butters, now's the time to put some up! We typically have three sizes available, priced as follows:
  • Small: 3-4" long, slender, ideal for pickling whole, $3.50/pound
  • Medium: 4-6" long, ideal for pickling whole or making spears, $3.00/pound
  • Large: 6-7" long, ideal for cutting into slices for bread and butter pickles or making large spears, $2.50/pound
To order, email me your name, pickup location, daytime phone number and quantity you'd like. We'll confirm with you before delivering to your pickup site.

For any Bubbies pickle fans out there (that's me!), I discovered this recipe a couple years ago that makes an incredible Bubbies-esque lacto-fermented pickle. I've never canned a pickle since!
-->
The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
9 am to 2 pm

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


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Week 9 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 9 from Valley Flora! Yes, for reals: TOMATOES!!!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
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What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • Tomatoes & Red Long Onions
  • Bulk Basil
  • Bulk Pickling Cukes
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Red Long Onions
  • Cucumbers
  • Head Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Beets
  • Bunch Carrots
  • Tomatoes
  • Italian Parsley
  • Zucchini
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Cauliflower
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Walla Walla Sweets
  • Broccoli
  • Carrots
  • Cucumbers
  • Kale
  • Lettuce
  • New Potatoes
  • Strawberries
  • Zucchini
  • Tomatoes
Tomatoes and Red Long Onions
July has been flying by at breakneck speed, so when Bets rolled into the barn yesterday with bins full of tomatoes for the CSA shares I experienced a moment of temporal vertigo. How could we have tomatoes already!? It's because in calendar reality (not my strong suit) we're already burning through the fourth week of July. As much as I lament the insane acceleration of time that whisks us breathlessly through summer, I DO love tomato season. Especially when it overlaps with cucumber season. Which means this is the best week ever (and so is next week, and the next, and the next....). If I were you, I'd take my tomatoes, cucumbers, parsley and Red Long of Tropea Torpedo Onions (yes, it's a mouthful of a name!) and make a batch of tabbouleh. If you're getting cauliflower this week - Coos Bay and Bandon members - you could make it a neon purple or neon green gluten-free tabbouleh with this riff on an ancient middle-eastern staple: Cauliflower "Rice" Tabbouleh! My other go-to dish for the next couple months is chopped salad with spiced chickpeas
, in one form or another. I usually just fake it without a recipe, tossing in cucumbers, tomatoes, zucchini, beans, radishes - but I do follow an Ottolenghi recipe for the spiced chickpeas to get that perfect balance of spices. This is that glorious minute when it doesn't take much effort or planning to make a great dinner.
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Bulk Basil Available
It's shaping up to be a great basil year. If you'd like to order a bulk quantity to make your winter stash of pesto, email us your name, pickup location, phone number and the number of pounds you would like. It's $16/pound - all gorgeous tops with no stem.
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Bulk Pickling Cucumbers Available!
Our pickling cukes are going full throttle! Whether you love a good, tangy dill pickle or are fond of bread and butters, now's the time to put some up! We typically have three sizes available, priced as follows:
  • Small: 3-4" long, slender, ideal for pickling whole, $3.50/pound
  • Medium: 4-6" long, ideal for pickling whole or making spears, $3.00/pound
  • Large: 6-7" long, ideal for cutting into slices for bread and butter pickles or making large spears, $2.50/pound
The little cukes you got the past two weeks are the variety we grow for pickling, but we also love them for fresh eating. What you received in your share was representative mostly of our small and medium size.

To order, email me your name, pickup location, daytime phone number and quantity you'd like. We'll confirm with you before delivering to your pickup site.

For any Bubbies pickle fans out there (that's me!), I discovered this recipe a couple years ago that makes an incredible Bubbies-esque lacto-fermented pickle. I've never canned a pickle since!

 
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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
9 am to 2 pm

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

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Week 8 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 8 from Valley Flora! Walla Wallas! Cukes!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
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What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • Walla Wallas and Cukes
  • Bulk Basil
  • Hats Off to the Crew!
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Walla Walla Sweet Onions
  • Broccoli
  • Head Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Rainbow Chard
  • Bunch Carrots
  • Red Cabbage
  • Zucchini
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Cauliflower
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What might be in your share next week...
  • Carrots
  • Red Long Torpedo Onions
  • Broccoli
  • Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Parsley
  • Zucchini
  • Cucumbers
Walla Wallas and Cukes!
I rolled in at 6:30 last night after a day and a half of driving from Idaho and jumped straight into CSA packout. What a wonderful treat to see bins full of big fat Walla Wallas and cocktail cucumbers and zucchini and chard and hefty red cabbages! In the week I was on the Salmon River the farm did a full pivot into the heart of summer (and the summer cover crops grew a foot, too!).

The fresh Walla Wallas in your share this week are the sweetest onion we grow - mild, juicy and big! Keep them in the fridge since they are not cured like our late season storage onions.

The small cucumbers are a variety I discovered a few years ago that doubles as both a fresh-eating and pickling cucumber. We call them cocktail cukes and they are delightfully sweet and crisp with thin skins. If you don't want to peel them, just give them a wash or a quick rub-down to remove any hairs and spines. It's smooth snacking from there.
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Bulk Basil Available
It's shaping up to be a great basil year. If you'd like to order a bulk quantity to make your winter stash of pesto, email us your name, pickup location, phone number and the number of pounds you would like. It's $16/pound - all gorgeous tops with no stem.
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Hats Off to the Crew!
Enormous thanks and kudos to the crew for keeping the farm humming while I was away this past week. I had a fantastic time on the Salmon River and got to leave all my farm worries behind during our six days of wilderness whitewater with dear old friends and family. Meanwhile, Amelia, Roberto, Shelli, Bets, Ab and Evan did a stellar job of getting the produce watered, weeded, seeded, harvested, washed, packed, invoiced, delivered and so much more. It's great to be back, renewed and grateful for all there is to come home to - not the least of which: the huge pile of salad I ate for dinner last night!
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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday (rain or shine)
9 am to 2 pm

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

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Week 7 from Valley Flora (early!)

Beet Box -

Week 7 from Valley Flora (early!) Purplette Onions! Zucchini!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
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What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • Purplettes and Zukes!
  • Flowers, Lovely Flowers!
  • Your Farmer Flew the Coop!
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Purplette Onions
  • Broccoli
  • Head Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Fava Beans
  • Bunch Carrots
  • Collards
  • Zucchini
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Possibly green cauliflower...
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What Might be in your Share Next Week...
  • Carrots
  • Walla Walla Sweet Onions
  • Broccoli
  • Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Cilantro
  • Zucchini
  • Rainbow Chard
  • Red Cabbage
Purplettes and Zukes!
The first onions of the year are always confirmation that it's really, truly summer. These little purplette onions are a lovely teaser of what's to come for the rest of the season: pretty little purple onions give way to big, fat, sweet Walla Wallas, then torpedo-shaped Red Long of Tropea, more Walla Wallas (while the gettin' is good and onion ring season is high!), and then we'll rock steady with yellow and red storage onions and hifalutin shallots - deep into wintertime (in fact, we're still eating last year's shallots!). The purplettes are relatively mild - great eaten raw or cooked - and very pretty to boot. Store them in the fridge since they aren't a cured onion that will hold up on the counter.

Zucchini! It always starts so benignly - one or two glossy fruits proffered forth on a tame, orderly plant. And then...

But we aren't to the "and then..." part yet (the part, usually in August, when people are locking their car doors to keep neighbors from dumping overabundant zucchini-blimps into the backseat). No, we're still in that beautiful moment of anticipation - like the early days of a romance - when everything about zucchini is AMAZING! So enjoy it, any way you like it. Zucchini made my 8-year old's list of Top Five Favorite vegetables recently (especially when cooked in lots of butter). Let it be amongst your top five this week, too.
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Strawberries for all, hard-working horses, too!
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Flowers, Lovely Flowers!
Amelia's flower patch is in full bloom! The best is still to come in her flower CSA, (zinnias! dahlias! marigolds!), and she has prorated flower shares available if you'd like to join up. If you're looking for extra flowers for an event or special occasion, she's your gal. For all flower-related inquiries, reach out to her directly at clements.amelia@gmail.com or (914) 419-0413. 
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Your Farmer Flew the Coop!
Who says farmers can't go on vacation in the summer? Well, I did for the past eleven years, but we're breaking free of that paradigm this season and have set things up so that everyone on my crew is going to take a week off during peak summer craziness. Yours truly is going first (to test the theory that it's possible....), and in a few hours I'm loading up my kids and hubby and driving to Idaho to float the Salmon River for a week. I used to run rivers all the time in the summer - especially Idaho rivers - but then I hitched myself to this farming dream and have been tied down on Floras Creek every summer since. Not that it's a bad place to be tied down to, but there is a little part of my soul that also dwells in the Sawtooths and the Uintahs and the Wallowas and the Wasatch and every river that flows forth from those inland mountains, and it's high time I reunited with that little vestige of my former twenty-something self. Especially since I'm turning 40 in a week. What better place to celebrate than deep in the largest wilderness area in the Lower 48, pretending I'm 20!?

Which is all to say, I'm out this week! Amelia will be checking the email, so if you need to communicate that's the best way to get a message through while I'm gone (or call  the farm at 541-348-2229). I'll be back in the saddle on Wednesday, July 17th. You're in great hands; I've made a million lists that the crew probably doesn't even need and there's great summer food starting to pop in the fields (zucchinis for all this week!). So eat well, be good, have fun, and I'll be back with a newsletter on July 17th full of tales about black bears and huge wave trains and yellow jackets and sunburns. And I'm sure I'll be hungry for some veg after a week of rice and beans.
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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday
9 am to 2 pm
Rain or shine!

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers if possible!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Week 6 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 6 from Valley Flora! Fava Beans! Beets! Dill!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
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What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • Favas - Beets - Dill
  • Tamales this Week!
  • Delivery Van Woes
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Cylindra Beets
  • Broccoli
  • Sugar Snap Peas
  • Head Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Dill
  • Fava Beans
  • Bunch Carrots
  • Red Ursa Kale
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Broccolini
  • Possibly green cauliflower...
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What Might be in your Share Next Week...
  • Carrots
  • Purplette Onions?
  • Broccoli
  • Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Basil?
  • Fava Beans
  • Zucchini
  • Collards?
  • Cucumbers?
  • Cauliflower?
Favas - Beets - Dill
Those of you who are familiar with fava beans probably know them more as a cover crop you plant in your garden in the fall, but you also know that after those those tall, grey-green plants bloom their ambrosial, bee-attracting bloom, they make big fat pods. And inside the cottony cushion of those pods (see above), are big fat beans wrapped in a light green skin. And if you peel away that light green skin (you can learn how to do this most efficiently here), you come to a bright green bean that is tender and delicious. Kind of a process, yes, but worth it. I'd approach the pile of favas in your tote  as a weekend adventure, when you have a little more time to play in the kitchen (and ideally have friends and family over to help you de-pod and de-skin them).

Once you get your beans prepped, the sky's the limit. Here's a gallery of recipes to stoke your creative juices: 19 Fava Bean Recipes from Epicurious.

The totes are getting a little less green and fluffy and a little more dense and coloful thanks to the root crops that are starting to size up on the farm. Beets for all this week! One thing I've learned after a decade of doing the CSA is that there are controversial vegetables and beets are one of them. Some of you will no doubt thrilled to see them this week and some of you will be downright disgusted. Studies show that in the case of kids, who always have strong opinions about food, it takes 20 tries before they will learn to like something that they are dead-set against eating. You might put yourself up to the 20-Try Challenge if you're wrinkling your nose at beets this week. And as a little aside, our raw beets are one of kids' favorite things when school groups come to the farm for fieldtrips each spring and fall and get to taste things in the field. If the second graders can do it (and love it), so can you! And of course, if all else fails, there's always chocolate beet cake (and it's even gluten free).
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Tamales this Week!
We'll be delivering tamale shares in marked blue coolers this week. Please only take tamales if you have signed up for them. Thanks!
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Delivery Van Woes
Some of you may have noticed the absence of the Valley Flora delivery van on the road these past few weeks. The timing chain went out three weeks ago and our mechanic has been beset by problems getting the parts to fix it. We've been cobbling it together with rented U-hauls and vans (a big thank you to Joe Pestana of Costpro Direct for letting us use his van on Saturdays, and to Amelia for her good-natured ability to take it as it comes on her Wednesday delivery route, which has been thoroughly upended the past three weeks!). If anyone has a spare van or box truck lying around that they want to rent to us until we resolve this problem, email me!
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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!
 
Every Wednesday & Saturday
9 am to 2 pm
Rain or shine!

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers if possible!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Week 5 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 5 from Valley Flora! Broccoli! Cauliflower! Cabbage!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
-->
What's Cookin' at the Farm...
  • Broccoli at last!
  • New Produce: Cabbage, Bunch Carrots, Cauliflower
  • Flower Shares!
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Baby Arugula
  • Green Cone Cabbage
  • Sugar Snap Peas
  • Head Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Cilantro
  • Broccoli
  • Bunch Carrots
  • Purple Cauliflower
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Nothing this week...
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What Might be in your Share Next Week...
  • Carrots
  • Beets?
  • Broccoli
  • Dill
  • Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Snap Peas
  • Fava Beans
  • Red Ursa Kale
Broccoli, at last!
It's a few weeks late, but the broccoli is finally here! Our early plantings were set back by spring slug damage - an issue I've never seen before in any of the hundreds of broccoli plantings we've set out into the field over the years. I experienced a few worried weeks back in early May when I wondered if our first plantings were ever going to bounce back from their slug-razing, but a little warmth and long sunny days finally did the trick. Now, of course, we are headed into a broccoli pile-up of epic proportions since our early plantings are maturing in sync with our mid-season plantings. Which is all to say, it's time to bust out your favorite broccoli recipes. Broccoli Caesar anyone (sub your green cabbage for the Napa cabbage)? Or peruse this diverse collection of broccoli recipes from Epicurious.


Our spring broccoli season tends to run through July, so it'll be a staple in your share for at least the next month. Enjoy!
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New Produce
Bunch Carrots: Our first spring seeding of carrots also suffered a setback when we got six inches of cold rain over a few days in April. Some of the seed simply rotted in the ground, and some germinated and then got mowed down by - yes, you guessed it - slugs. We re-seeded as soon as we could but ultimately fell a few weeks shy of my goal to have freshly-dug carrots year-round on the farm. We're back in 'em now and if all goes according to plan, you should see carrots every single week for the rest of the season - even some rainbow carrots here and there!

Green Cone Cabbage: I love this whimsical cabbage variety for lots of reasons. As a farmer, I love how early it matures and how sure-heading and consistent it is. As an eater, I love how tender and sweet it is, and how easy it is to cut up in the kitchen. You'll see six or seven different types of cabbage from now until December, but only this one will make you want to get on You Tube and pull up some old Saturday Night Live Conehead skits.

Purple Cauliflower: This one snuck up on us! A week ago they were but lavender buttons wrapped in the cozy embrace of big-framed cauliflower leaves. Then, BAM!, on Tuesday we were filling bins with neon cauliflower (a lot can happen in a few long days around the summer solstice!). I love this variety because it stays purple when you cook it.
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Flower Shares!
Flower shares are officially on! If you are signed up for flowers, look for a separate weekly email from Amelia. Remember to take your bouquet home each week, and please only take flowers if you have signed up for them.
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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!

 
Every Wednesday & Saturday
9 am to 2 pm
Rain or shine!

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers if possible!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Week 4 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 4 from Valley Flora! Happy Solstice!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
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What's Cookin' at the Farm...
 
  • The Solstice Salad Extravaganza!
  • New Produce: Peas, Basil, Chard
  • First Flower Shares Starting on Saturday!
  • Strawberries by the Flat and Great U-Pick!
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Baby Spinach
  • Rainbow Chard
  • Sugar Snap Peas
  • Head Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Basil
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Broccolini
  • Asparagus
  • Lacinato Kale
  • Tokyo Bekana Pac Choi
  • Cilantro
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What Might be in your Share Next Week...
  • Arugula
  • Cabbage
  • Broccoli
  • Baby Carrots?
  • Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Snap Peas
  • Cauliflower?
Solstice Salad Extravaganza
When you're eating direct from a farm like ours every crop has its peak moment during the year, which largely dictates what we all put in our bellies for the week. Instead of going to the grocery store with your list, you get to take your cue from the food that's coming out of Valley Flora soil right now. So might I suggest that this week you put a lot of salad in your belly. And maybe that of your friends as well. Always around the summer solstice we find ourselves cutting head lettuce the size of beach balls, bunching luxurious leaves of chard, and harvesting tender baby spinach and arugula galore. This is their moment. Which means its your moment to have a Solstice Salad Party and revel in the abundance of it all with friends and family.

A little tip: there's nothing like switching up your salad dressing to make you feel like you're eating a whole new thing. I was inspired by this recipe for Wedge Salad with Tahini Ranch, maybe made with the butterhead you're all getting this week instead of the little gem (or if you're really into excess, you could come to the farmstand and buy some little gem this week :)...). Also, with the help of few hearty toppings like nuts, avocado, and cheese, salad becomes the main course, and a filling one at that - no cooking required!
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Amelia Clements, Valley Flora Pea Queen
New Produce
You're getting a few of my favorite things this week: the first sugar snap peas, basil, and rainbow chard. Amelia, our pea-picking queen, is to thank for the Sugar Snaps: she single-handedly hauled in 120 pounds of peas on Monday in a record-breaking feat of pea-picking persistence. Remember that Sugar Snaps are not a shelling pea: you eat the whole sweet thing, pod and all, and they're especially fat and juicy this year.

Other than tomato plants, I can't think of anything that smells more like summer than basil, so how apropros that we're kicking off summer this week with your first installment. Add it to one of your bodacious salads this week!

And rainbow chard, so pretty it's worthy of a vase! I love a couple chard leaves in my morning smoothie, and a big heap of it steamed at dinner. It also makes a great lasagna filling in lieu of, or in addition to, spinach.
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Flower Shares Start on Saturday!
Amelia's flowers are beginning to bloom! She's going to kick off the Flower Share season this Saturday so Bandon and Port Orford flower members will receive their first bouquets. You have some lovely-smelling sweet peas to look forward to your first week!

If you are signed up for flowers, look for a separate email from Amelia later this week. Please only take flowers if you have signed up for them for the season!
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Strawberries by the Flat, and Great U-Pick!
Strawberry production is ramping up enough that I hope to be able to offer special order flats to our CSA members, delivered to your pickup site. If you would like to order, please email us your name, pickup site, daytime phone number (ideally a number I can text), and the quantity of flats you would like. We'll fill requests in the order received as the berries are available (we can't guarantee a specific delivery date but will contact you the day before your pickup to confirm once we have your berries).

The u-pick is also great right now, but is typically getting picked out before noon. Strawberry fever is running high - as always in June! We should have at least three to four good months of berries, so come pick whenever it's best for you!
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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!

 
Every Wednesday & Saturday
9 am to 2 pm
Rain or shine!

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers if possible!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

Solar-Powered Produce!!!

Beet Box -

Solar-Powered Produce!!! Solar at last on the farm!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
View this email in your browser
-->

What's Cookin' at the Farm...
 
  • Solar Power at Valley Flora!
  • Meet your VF Farm Crew
  • New Produce this Week
  • Strawberry U-pick is open!

  •  
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Stir-fry Mix
  • Kohlrabi
  • Sunflower shoots
  • Head Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Hakurei Turnips
  • Fennel
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Broccolini
  • Asparagus
  • Lacinato Kale
  • Tokyo Bekana Pac Choi
  • Cilantro
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What Might be in your Share Next Week...
  • Spinach
  • Chard
  • Pac Choi
  • Cilantro
  • Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Snap Peas?
  • Broccolini or Asparagus
Solar-Power at the Farm!
As of this week, we are officially running on solar power at Valley Flora! It's been a long-awaited project - a decade-long dream - and yesterday we not only started making our own power to run the walk-in cooler, the freezers, the lights, the greenhouse fans, and the irrigation pump (all of our core infrastructure), but we were actually sending power back to the grid as well! What a feeling to harness all that hot sun that's usually beating down on the barn roof making us sweaty on a packout day and to turn it into electricity instead: the hum of our walk-in, the whir of the greenhouse fans, the cycling of the pump, all thanks to the generosity of the sun.

It took ten years to get here, but this past 18 months the dream started to become a reality thanks to a combination of factors. Solar technology has gotten twice as affordable and twice as efficient in the past decade. In winter of 2018 a farmer friend and tireless renewable energy advocate put us in touch with a Spark Northwest, a non-profit in Seattle that provides grant-writing assistance to small businesses for renewable energy projects. With their help we applied for a federal and a state grant and were fortunate to receive both. We also received a Wild Rivers Coast Alliance small grant and a number of generous individual donations from CSA members and friends of the farm. All together these funds got us close enough to the project budget that we were able to give Sol Coast the green light to do the installation this past month and flip the switch on the inverters this week!

I want to express my deepest thanks to everyone who chipped in to make this happen at the farm, and to all of you who have cheered and voted for the project along the way. As farmers we are feeling the unnerving effects of climate change directly (more extreme weather events, hotter and drier summers) and we want to be a pro-active part of the solution. Solar feels like a huge step in the right direction and we couldn't have done it without the support of Oregon Department of Energy, USDA, Wild Rivers Coast Alliance, Sol Coast, Kyle Electric, Coos Curry Electric Co-op and so many of you! Thank you for being part of positive change!
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And this is how your VF farm crew feels about our new solar panels!
Meet your Farm Crew!
Pictured left to right:
  • Zoë, that's me, always the biggest spaz in the photo.
  • Shelli Thompson, seasoned farmer who we are so lucky to have join us this season from Washington to round out our harvest crew and run the farmstand!
  • Amelia Clements, Flower Farmer extraordinaire logging her third year at Valley Flora!
  • Bets Harrison, matriarch of it all, the reason Abby and I exist, and tomato-pepper-cuke-zuke-basil-hot sauce-jam lady! Thanks, Ma, for moving here 40+ years ago and bringing us into this world on Floras Creek.
  • Roberto Sierra, 9-year Valley Flora veteran who works so hard he makes the rest of us look lazy, and who is amazingly good-natured about putting up with all us ladies, day in and day out.
  • Abby Bradbury, Salad Queen of 22 years, growing you the best salad mix this side of the Milky Way! #EatMoreSalad!
Not pictured is Evan Kramer, our dedicated Saturday delivery driver who is on vacation celebrating his birthday this week! Happy Birthday Evan!
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New Produce
Fennel: Bulbing fennel is one of my personal favorites. It has texture like celery and a mild anise flavor. Slice it up thinly and eat it raw in salads or you can cook with it. Great on pizza, in pasta sauce, sauteed with butter, in soup.

Strawberries: Most of the time the strawberries don't even make it home from the CSA pickup, but if they do, and if you are a delayed gratification type and want to make them last, they will keep for a number of days in the fridge in an airtight container. If you leave your berries on the counter they will continue ripening (and getting even sweeter) but will also have a shorter shelf life.

Sunflower Shoots: Another staple in our micro-mix line-up, these are the shoots of sprouted organic black oil sunflower seeds. Nutty flavor, great texture, awesome in salads, on sandwiches and by the handful! We packed them into cello bags this week after one member reported that her pea shoots were limp in the Bio-Bag last week. Please let me know if you had the same problem so we know whether we should continue to use the Bio-Bags or not. The last thing I want if for anyone to get sad-looking produce!

Stir-Fry Mix: The bagged greens are a mix of baby kale and mustards that make a great addition to stir-fries. You can also steam them or add them to your salad. The mustards have a little kick to spice things up.

Note: Saturday members might receive cilantro and Tokyo Bekana pac choi, a lime-green, frilly-leaved type of pac choi that is wonderfully tender and mild. Both were slated for next week but with this heat it might try to bolt on us so we might start harvesting it for the end of the week. Just FYI in case you get a bunch of cilantro and a big lofty light green, white-ribbed head of pac choi on Saturday!
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Strawberry U-Pick is Open!
We've opened the gate to the strawberry patch and you're in for a treat. The berries you're getting in your Harvest Basket this week are a little sample of the big, bodacious, crimson red, startlingly sweet berries that await you in the u-pick field. Production is still ramping up so we only have 5-6 beds open for u-pick right now but that will increase as the berries hit their full stride in the coming weeks. If you're coming a long distance to pick in these first few weeks, we strongly suggest coming in the morning because the beds will get picked out before noon. Also keep in mind that our strawberry season goes for 4+ months and they become more abundant as the summer rolls on. I always tell folks that if you want to pick to fill your freezer, plan on coming a little later in the summer when there's more fruit and the June strawberry fervor has died down a little. We do have buckets you can pick into and boxes you can take fruit home in, but we still suggest bringing your own u-pick containers if you can.

We picked yesterday to fill orders and CSA totes and it was pure delight. We were all a little giddy, which is saying something when you're stooped for three hours straight...

 
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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!

 
Every Wednesday & Saturday
9 am to 2 pm
Rain or shine!

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers if possible!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


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Week 2 from Valley Flora!

Beet Box -

Week 2 from Valley Flora!
Thanks for eating locally from our family farm!
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What's Cookin' at the Farm...
 
  • A Historic First Week!
  • What's in the Box?!
  • Beauty, Always...
  • Tamales This Week!
  • Update on Strawberry U-pick
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What's In Your Share This Week:*
  • Scallions
  • Baby Spinach
  • Kohlrabi
  • Head Lettuce
  • Radishes
  • Hakurei Turnips
  • Collards
  • Pea Shoots
On Rotation:
(Some locations will receive it this week; others in a future week)
  • Broccolini
  • Asparagus
*Harvest Basket contents may vary between pickup sites in a given week depending on what's ripe and ready on the farm. Don't worry - if something is on the list but not in your tote, you'll get it soon!

The VF Crystal Ball - What Might be in your Share Next Week...
  • Asparagus or Broccolini
  • Braising Mix
  • Chard or Kale
  • Kohlrabi
  • Lettuce
  • Strawberries?!
  • Cilantro?
  • Sunflower Shoots
  • Hakurei turnips?
  • Strawberries? (Come on sun!)
A Historic First Week!
You did it, you set a new CSA record at Valley Flora: no mix-ups in the first week!!! I didn't get a single call or email reporting that someone's salad had gone missing, or that there was an extra tote at the end of pick-up hours. Thank you all so much for smooth sailing in the first week!

The only issue we saw at pick-up locations was that a handful of folks didn't take their salad shares home. We hate for you to miss out if you're signed up for Abby's Greens, so be sure to grab your salad this week if you ordered it. Remember, all salad share members are listed on the cooler lid and anyone who is signed up for a full pound share has a bag labeled with their name on it inside the red salad cooler.

Thanks again for a great first week!
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What's in the Box!?
A few notes on new items this week:

Pea Shoots: In the last couple of years we've gotten into micro mix and shoot production in our greenhouse. I started for selfish reasons: I wanted to have tasty sunflower and pea shoots and micro mix in my own salad bowl year-round, and it gave me an excuse to plant seeds every month of the year (I guess you could say we have an addiction to growing things around here). The shoots and micro mix turned out to be a great product popular with both chefs and our farmstand customers alike, so they've become a staple offering. This week you're getting a bag of pea shoots. I love mixing them into my salads, but you can also use them as pretty garnish or quick-saute them. We've bagged them into compostable Bio-bags. I like that these bags are not plastic (they're made out of non-GMO corn), but they do have a weird feel to them (especially when wet) and I've noticed that things wilt in them in your fridge (doh!). I suggest you double bag your pea shoots or transfer them into an airtight container to keep them perky.

Baby Spinach: Lovely little tender spinach leaves bagged into the clear ziploc

Kohlrabi: Plum-purple and a little alien looking! Peel the pretty skin with a veg peeler or knife and enjoy raw as veggie sticks (great with a little chili, salt and lime like Mexican-style jicama, or dredge through your favorite dip). You can also cook kohlrabi, but I find it loses some it's crispy, juicy appeal in a stir-fry.

Collard Greens: The flat-leaved bunch of greens in your share is a Southern staple. That doesn't mean, however, that you have to cook a mess 0' collard greens all day with ham hocks and black-eyed peas. I don't really know why collards are traditionally boiled for hours since they are wonderful lightly steamed, just like kale or chard. You can also roll them up, slice them thinly, and make a raw salad with an assertive dressing. Or steam whole leaves lightly and use them for wraps or sushi rolls (move over tortillas and seaweed).
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Beauty, Always...
Many years back, my mom, Bets, put words to a principle that has always guided life at Valley Flora, since before it was Valley Flora: Everything we do has to be at least 51% art. That is to say, this is a working farm where function is important, but form and beauty are also essential and non-negotiable. If you were to boil it down, our deepest motivation for doing what we do here on this land is our desire to spend our lives amidst the natural beauty of this valley, and perhaps to paint a bit of our own beauty on the canvas it provides us.

A friend of ours works for an organization called And Beauty for All, which is dedicated to "Bringing Americans together and healing our wounds by embracing natural beauty and human design in ways that revitalize our communities and renew our environment." She asked me to write something inspired by the farm for their blog, which you can read here. It is moments like those with my draft horses, in the fold of these hills along the creek, that I feel so lucky to have drawn this card.

My 8 year old daughter Cleo wants to be an artist when she grows up, and more specifically, an artist who lives on a farm. I hope she does with all my heart. May the love of beauty live on (and may she find someone to live on that farm with who wants to do all the hard work, hah!).
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Tamales THIS Week!
Tamale members, your first dozen are coming this week! Tamales will be frozen, packed into marked blue coolers and labeled individually with names. Double check the label on your bag before you take your dozen home! Enjoy!
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Strawberry U-Pick Update
Me-oh-my is the world excited for strawberry u-pick to open! We have been patiently waiting for the berries to ripen up so that we have enough to satisfy everyone (CSA shares, farmstand customers, restaurants, stores, and u-pick...). Opening day is coming soon - possibly even this Saturday if they ripen enough - but PLEASE CHECK OUR WEBSITE before you come! I am updating about the u-pick status there, as well as on Facebook. It's agonizing when a mini-van pulls up to the farmstand and a whole load of kids pile out with their buckets ready to pick and we have to break their hearts. One upbeat boy - upon learning that he couldn't pick strawberries - said, "Don't worry, Mom, we can get some kale instead!" He then proceeded to pick a bunch of kale from one of our farmstand coolers and ate it on the spot like an ice cream cone. If only the adults could handle the let-down so well! :)

Keep an eye on our website and know that once u-pick starts it's looking like it will be a great year in the berries.
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The Farmstand is Open for Summer Hours!

 
Every Wednesday & Saturday
9 am to 2 pm
Rain or shine!

Fresh Produce
U-Pick Strawberries & Flowers
Homemade Jam & Hot Sauce

Please bring your own bags and u-pick containers if possible!

Directions to the Farm
For Recipes & Cooking Inspiration:
 
Valley Flora Recipe Wizard
Our own collection of recipes gathered over the years.
 
Epicurious
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
 
Full Belly Farm
Recipes from one of my favorite farms in California, pioneers of the organic movement since the 80s.

Farm Fresh to You
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient.
 
Helsing Junction Farm
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes geared toward CSA members.
Copyright © 2019 Valley Flora, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp

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