Raspberry U-pick Opens This Saturday, June 30th!
The berries are starting to hang heavy and ripe in the raspberry patch, and the first few we’ve sampled have been outrageously tasty!
Remember, all Harvest Basket members are entitled to 2 pounds of u-pick raspberries at no charge. (Please note this is for Harvest Basket members ONLY). To redeem your credit:
- Come to the farm on a Wednesday or Saturday between 9 am and 3 pm (but be aware that the raspberry patch can get picked over by the afternoon).
- Check in with Aro, who tends our farmstand. She will have a list with the names of all our Harvest Basket members on it.* If you have brought your own containers, weigh them and record the tare weight (we have tape and pens and a scale for this).
- Go picking!
- Return to Aro. She’ll weigh your harvest and record your picked poundage on the list. Anything you pick beyond your 2 pound credit, you can simply pay for. You are welcome to come multiple times and get a little each time, or get your 2 pounds all at once.
*If you share a Harvest Basket, the list will only have the name of the primary basket-holder. Tell Aro your share partner’s name if she can’t find you on the list. And please remember that it is 2 pounds per Harvest Basket, not 2 pounds per person! Thanks.
If you are not a Harvest Basket member, you are still welcome to come pick, of course! Price per pound is $3.50 for raspberries. Bring your own containers, if possible.
The summer raspberry crop usually peaks in the early part of July, and only lasts 3-4 weeks. Come on out while the getting is good!
In your share this week:
- Broccoli or Broccolini
- Rainbow Chard
- Head Lettuce
This means that some pickup locations will receive it this week, others next week – or in a future week.
- Braising Mix
The oo-la-la-iest of all the bunched greens, rainbow chard is like an edible bouquet - an electric array of pink, orange, yellow, white, and red stems topped by dark leaves. When people are puzzled by what to do with chard, I always tell them to use it any way they would use spinach. It cooks up wonderfully: steamed, sautéed, in soup, in lasagna, in spanikopita, in omelettes, quiche, etc.
Chard is the evolutionary grandparent of beets; you’ll notice a similarity in their leaves. The crunchy stems are entirely edible and will brighten up any dish with their colorful confetti. It’s super high in vitamins A, E and C, as well as iron and calcium. Don’t let this one end up in your compost!
Storage: keep in the fridge, in a plastic bag; stores up to a week.
Rhubarb, along with asparagus, is one of the first spring offerings from the garden. It’s actually related to dock, the common weed, but over the course of 4000 years has found a foothold as a unique element in desserts. It’s thought to have originated in China, where it was widely used medicinally. It then found its way to Europe, where it was first cultivated as a decorative garden plant. Not until the 1700s did the English begin their love affair with rhubarb in pies, tarts, compotes and sauces.
Its slow launch as a popular food may be because only the stalks of the plant are edible; the leaves are highly toxic due to their extremely high oxalic acid content. Even the stalks are acidic and sour and take a good dose of sweetening to mellow their tartness.
Rhubarb is chock full of vitamins A and C, calcium and other minerals, and is a blood purifier and digestive aid. Historically, it was a nutritionally rejuvenating exclamation point to mark the end of a limited seasonal winter diet!
Our own rhubarb has outpaced the ripening of our strawberries this month (there is no rhubarb dessert quite so quintessential as strawberry-rhubarb pie, which we had hoped to provide the key ingredients for). Meanwhile, in waiting on the strawberries, the slugs discovered the ruby-red stalks of our rhubarb plants and started to ugly them up. So that does it: we logged the rhubarb yesterday, picked all the berries we had, and found a great recipe that ISN’T pie:
There’s 10 ounces of rhubarb in your share this week, so you may want to adjust the recipe accordingly.
Or go the simple route: simply dice up your rhubarb into 1 inch chunks and cook it in a small amount of water with the sweetener of your choice (no need to peel it). When the fibrous stalks become mushy, it’s done. Use as jam, pour over vanilla ice cream or cake, or chill it and eat it straight up.
Storage: will last for weeks and weeks in a plastic bag in the fridge.
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