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Field Report

CSA and Farm News 6/12-6/18

Posted by Andre Cantelmo :: Sunday, June 11 :: 7:14am

 

Meet Catalina, farm dog extraordinaire. She is a cattle dog-blue healer mix, that does not leave Jon's side. She fits right into the crew and even Zaga the cat has not disapproved. At 13 weeks she is already getting the rules of the place. This lucky dog spends most her time up in the haygroove guarding our tomatoes from chipmunks and the like. Best time to catch a glimpse of her is around lunch when the crew gathers somewhere near the stand.
I know that I am berry obsessed. The crop just looks so good I can't wait to share it. This is the first berry I could find. Yes, I ate it. No, I did not share. The good news is with this heat that we are getting I think we should have berries in the share next week. Greg and I are worried about all the birds gathering and waiting for them to turn red. We do have some netting that we can put out. This week week we will set some hoops out to support the netting. As they turn red we will cover those sections. We have never done this before so I am sure we will learn along the way.
 
New from Bell & Goose for the CSA this week: Similar to Boursin, Herb Rounds from Bell & Goose Cheese Co. Will be available at the farm stand this weekend in three flavors.

Along with some hard cheese choises, this light spreadable cheese is great on a cheese plate for friends or as a treat just for you. I sometimes add a fine jam to the mix. My newest thing though is to hit up Short Creek Farm for some charcuterie. These guys really know what they are doing and you should check them out.
 
See you this week!
Locally yours,
Andre 
 

A Salad Dressing To Rule Them All!
From the NY Times

A homemade vinaigrette will last in the refrigerator until you need it. CreditKarsten Moran for The New York Times

Open your refrigerator: how many bottles of salad dressing are lurking in the door? If you’re an average American shopper, you add one or two bottles to that sticky collection every couple of months.Yet you don’t actually need a single one. Those bottled dressings, even the expensive and all-natural versions, contain ingredients like corn syrup, cheap vegetable oil, monosodium glutamate and any number of unnecessary stabilizers and gums.

And they aren’t really more convenient than a basic vinaigrette made from real ingredients — which can also live happily and indefinitely in the refrigerator door. There’s a notion among purists that homemade dressing must be made from scratch for every single salad. These are the same people who scorn salad greens in plastic tubs, wash every leaf individually, and tell you to rub your olive-wood salad bowl with a garlic clove. As Maggie Smith proclaimed in “The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie,” “For those who like that sort of thing, that is the sort of thing they like.”

I don’t like.

What I like is to shake up a pint of classic vinaigrette once a week or so, nothing more than olive oil, vinegar, shallots and mustard, and stick it in the refrigerator until I need it. It takes about seven minutes and makes a bright, fresh green salad an immediate possibility any night of the week. If the goal is to add a green vegetable to your dinner (and when is it not?), this is a whole lot easier than roasting brussels sprouts or sautéing green beans, and nearly as nutritionally effective. To the salad you can add slivered red peppers, half-moons of cucumber, toasted pine nuts, halved grape tomatoes, soft herbs like parsley or mint — or nothing at all.

This dressing has never gone “off” or rancid, or failed to be anything but fragrant and delicious. The flavor of the oil may not be as exquisite after week two, but with all the other strong flavors in the jar, it really doesn’t matter. The secret seems to be in the shallots, which continue to soften and sweeten in the vinegar for as long as you keep the dressing, adding a round, bright flavor for as long as you keep it around.

In the refrigerator, the olive oil will clump together, but a half-hour at room temperature (or resting next to the stove) will liquefy it again.

I wouldn’t do this with all dressings; the taste of garlic and anchovies tends to get stronger over time, and the acidic fragrance of lemon juice gets weaker.

But with robust vinegar and shallots, this dressing is itself a pantry staple that can be tweaked each time you use it. Just before serving, pour out the amount you need, then add anchovy paste, garlic and lemon zest to make a Caesar dressing. Or whisk in feta cheese, lemon juice and fresh oregano for a Greek salad. Or blend in some honey to make the flavor more appealing to children. Or thin it with crème fraîche and minced chives to make a French-accented creamy dressing.
Last, adding toasted bread or croutons, nuggets of good bacon and poached or sunny-side-up eggs can turn any of these salads into a full meal. And unless you’re going to live on Hot Pockets, dinner doesn’t get much easier than that.
 
This Weeks Share

A three pack of these mini heads can replace two large heads of lettuce.
CSA Share 6/12/2017-6/18/2017


                       Full             Partial 
Lettuce            2                  1
Greens         1 Bag              1 Bag
Carrots            2#                1#
Chard               1                   1
Cucumber       1                   1

 

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