As we were harvesting and washing all of the produce on Tuesday, there was one gnawing concern: would this week’s CSA share actually fit in a 10 gallon Rubbermaid tote? 8 ears of corn, 2 red onions, a pound of carrots, 3 pounds of beets, 2 zukes, 4 serranos, 3 big sweet peppers, a pint of strawberries, a big pile of tomatoes, a head of lettuce, a bunch of herbs, and for some, a tangled pound of green beans! All told, an average Harvest Basket weighed in at about 17 pounds this week.
Historically, September is the biggest month of food at Valley Flora – the most diversity, the most heft, and the most color. It is the pinnacle of the harvest, a time when we find ourselves short on tables to sort it all, tubs to wash it all, and cooler space to keep it chilled. It’s also the easiest time of year to subsist on raw veggies. We’ve been eating a lot of variations on the Greek salad theme of late: tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, fresh herbs, sweet onions, carrots, and beans all chopped up and amended with a splash of olive oil, balsamic, salt, pepper, and feta cheese. Next to a hunk of Seth’s Sourdough bread, it’s a meal unto itself.
The corn in your share this week is an early (by our coastal standards) bi-color called Trinity. It’s the first of four corn plantings on the farm, so hopefully you’ll be seeing “elotes” (Spanish for ears of sweet corn, pronounced ae-loh-tays) in your share every other week (or so) through September and into October. Corn is the sweetest right off the stalk (the sugars begin converting to starch as soon as it’s picked), so eat it sooner than later to ensure you get the best corn experience. We like to steam in ours in a shallow pan of water with a lid on it (saves all the time and energy of boiling a big pot of water, and it cooks in a few short minutes). Drag it through some butter when you’re done and eat it off the cob.
Or, if you’re inspired to create something with your corn, a friend has been raving about this recipe for Corn Fritters with Tomato and Feta Salad: http://www.valleyflorafarm.com/content/corn-fritters-tomato-feta-salad
Sweet Peppers Are On! Available in 5 Pound Bags!
So begins the pepper season, with a bang! You’ll be seeing a variety of peppers in the coming weeks, ranging from stocky bells to long, tapered Italian roasters (great for fresh-eating and roasting alike), all in screaming sunset colors. They are sweet. We eat them like popsicles, often for breakfast. My mom, who grows all the peppers, is very popular at this time of year.
Like last year, we will be offering BULK PEPPERS to those of you who want to either put them up for winter, or indulge in a full-bore-fresh-pepper-eating-spree. Peppers are among the easiest of things to preserve. You can simply chop them up and freeze them in Ziplocs (no blanching required). They add a beautiful confetti splash to your winter meals, straight out of the freezer. OR, you can fire-roast them over an open flame, peel off the charred skin, and freeze or pressure can them for an amazing roasted pepper accent in any dish later on.
Here are the pepper-buying details:
- Available in 5 pound bags, $20 per bag
- Choose either: Red Roasters (tapered, Italian sweet peppers), or the Mixed Bag (a combo of bells and roasters in red, yellow and red colors)
We will fill orders in the order we receive them on a rolling basis in the coming weeks. To order, please email us your:
- Phone number
- Quantity and type of peppers you want
We’ll deliver to your pickup site.
Strawberries Still Available by the Flat!
The strawberries are booming again (sweeter than ever with all this heat) and we have plenty to fill special orders. If you would like to order a flat (or two), email us your name, pickup location, phone number, and the number of flats you would like. We will deliver to your pickup site. Flats are $35 each, 12 heaping pints to a flat.
In your share this week:
- Cabernet Red Storage Onions
- Head Lettuce
- Hot Peppers (Serranos)
- Sweet Peppers
- Tomatoes – Red Slicers & Heirlooms
- Red Beets
This means that some pickup locations will receive it this week, others next week – or in a future week.
- Green Beans
The Valley Flora Crystal Ball: What MIGHT be in your Share Next week
Remember, no promises!
- Red Onions
- A fresh herb of some kind
- Sweet Peppers
- Green Beans, on rotation
Please note: all of our produce is field-rinsed, not washed. We recommend you wash all of your produce before eating it.
For recipes and ideas, check out these links:
Our own collection of recipes that you can contribute to
Our website’s recipe “search engine,” where you can hunt down recipes by ingredient
A vast collection of recipes, searchable by one or multiple ingredients
A storehouse of recipes, searchable by ingredient
A Washington farm that has a good collection of seasonal recipes