2017: Week 1, May 28 – June 3

Tantre Farm CSA Newsletter
WEEK #1
May 28-June 3, 2017

If needed, please contact Richard Andres & Deb Lentz at 2510 Hayes Rd. Chelsea, MI 48118 e-mail: tantrefarm@hotmail.com phone: 734-475-4323 website: www.tantrefarm.com.

In our newsletter, we try to give you an accurate listing of the produce in your box; however, since the newsletter is published before the harvest, we may sometimes substitute some vegetables for others. The information provided here is also published each week on our website. **Also, if you’re having trouble identifying any unfamiliar produce, please look for “Veggie ID” with additional information on our website under CSA INFO or under RECIPES.

THIS WEEK’S SHARE

GREENS ADVICE for the entire season: Please keep in mind that greens are especially prominent during this early part of the farm season, so basically, “It’s salad time!” If you’re not sure how best to enjoy your green, taste it. Greens can be eaten raw in a salad or lightly steamed or sautéed with garlic, green onions, or butter in order to mellow their flavor. They can also be tossed into a dish (such as soup or a smoothie) for an extra nutritional and flavorful boost.

ARUGULA (Sylvetta): also known as “wild rocket” with more deeply lobed leaves and a more pungent flavor; an aromatic, bright salad green with a peppery mustard flavor
-How to use: add to salads, soups, and sautéed vegetable dishes
-How to store: very perishable, so use up quickly; store in plastic bag with a paper towel in refrigerator for up to 5 days.

ASPARAGUS: You will receive a bunch of green, purple, or white variety; each contains vitamins A, B, and C, as well as iron.
– How to use: serve raw, chopped in salads, or with dips. You can also steam, roast, grill.
– How to store: wrap in damp cloth and plastic bag, then refrigerate. Alternatively, bundle spears with rubber band and place upright in container with an inch of water.

BURDOCK ROOT (GOBO): looks like a long, slender, brown carrot with grayish-white flesh; VERY nutritious and medicinal; mild bittersweet flavor. (See feature article.)
– How to use: should be cooked first, but can be grated in salads, steamed or sauteed, in stews, soups, casseroles, or stir-fries.
– How to store: wrap in plastic bag and refrigerate or keep in hydrator drawer.

FRESH HERBS: In general, store herbs upright with cut stems in 1 or 2 inches of water and refrigerate for up to 1 week or wrap in slightly dampened cloth or plastic bag and store in refrigerator.

** WEDNESDAY SHARES–All shares will receive Oregano for Wed.
Oregano— This member of the mint family is similar to marjoram, but not as sweet and more pungent, spicy flavor and aroma; good in soups and tomato-based dishes.

**FRIDAY/SATURDAY SHARES–You may CHOOSE ONE bunch (NOT one bunch of each) from the following 3 options:
-Thyme– tiny green leaves used in meat and vegetable dishes and most casseroles, soups, stews, and medicinal teas, which soothe sore throats. This herb has gone to flower, so the leaves are small, but the flowers are dainty and delicious. We needed to clear the bed anyway, and instead of throwing it out, have it as an option.
-Lemon Balm– these fragrant lemon-minty leaves make a delicate herbal tea, served hot or cold; good addition to lettuce or fruit salads and ice cream; nicely paired with grilled fish or lamb and tossed with steamed vegetables; also aids in depression, tension, or nausea.
-Oregano—See above for detailed description.

LETTUCE: You will receive 2-4 heads of lettuce, which may include Green Leaf, Red Leaf or Romaine.
-How to use: raw in salads, sandwiches, or use in soups
-How to store: refrigerate in plastic bag for 3-5 days.

GREEN ONIONS (also called “Scallions”): young shoots of bulb onions with long green stalks and milder tasting than large bulb onions; full of great fiber and antioxidants, high in potassium and source of vitamins C and B-6.
-How to use: the bulb, flowers, and green leaves are edible; can be cooked, grilled, roasted whole as a vegetable; chopped in salads, soups, & other dishes for flavor.
-How to store: refrigerate in damp towel/plastic bag for 5-7 days.

POTATOES (Russian Banana Fingerlings): an heirloom potato with small, banana-shaped tubers with yellow skin and light yellow flesh; used by chefs for its delicious flavor and smooth “waxy” texture that doesn’t fall apart when cooked. You will receive these “old buddies” potatoes that have been over-wintered in our timber frame root cellar; possibly slightly less firm than a new potato, but good for cooking in any way suggested below.
-How to use: good baked, boiled, roasted or in salads
-How to store: keep unwashed in cool, dark place in paper bag; ideal temperature is 38-40 degrees with 80-90 percent humidity, but no condensation; a basement or very cool closet will work.

SPINACH: You will receive a bag of this crisp, dark green leaf– best eaten raw or with minimal cooking to obtain the beneficial chlorophyll, as well as vitamins A & C; delicious flavor when juiced.
– How to use: toss in fresh salad, add to sandwiches, sauté, steam, braise, or add to crepes, quiche, lasagna, and soups.
– How to store: refrigerate with a damp towel/bag for up to 1 week.

WHITE HAKUREI TURNIPS and GREENS: a white salad turnip with round, smooth roots that have a sweet, fruity flavor with a crisp, tender texture. Both roots (good source of Vitamin C, potassium, and calcium; good in salads and soups) and greens (slightly sweet and can be boiled, steamed, sautéed, stir-fried, and since hairless, are good in salads; excellent source of vitamins A and C and good source of riboflavin, calcium and iron) are edible!
-How to use: good in salads and soups; can be roasted, steamed, or sauteed.
-How to store: remove greens from turnip root and store separately in plastic bag in refrigerator for up to 3 days; roots can last up to 1-2 weeks in refrigerator.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

1. ANY CHANGES in your address, phone, e-mail, or of misspelled names on any mailings or Pick Up Lists at Distribution Sites? Please let us know as soon as possible.

2. FAMILY FARM HIKE on June 14: Come join us for a guided monthly exploratory walk around Tantre Farm on Wednesday, the 14th, at 4 PM. Each month various community members will share their expertise in a guided tour for about a 45-60 minute hike around the farm for kids and adults. We will meet behind the Main House at the picnic tables in the back yard.

3. PAYMENTS DUE: If you still owe money, it will be reflected on the check-in sheet, when you pick up your box. If you believe there has been some mistake, or have any questions, please call or e-mail us. Please finalize payments due within the month of June, unless alternate arrangements are made.

4. MISSED PICK UP: If you don’t pick up or forget to come, you will have one day to come to the farm to get your share before it will be taken apart or donated after any distribution. Please call or email, so we know what happened.

5. CSA COOKBOOKS: We will have a handy cookbook for sale this season called “From Asparagus to Zucchini: A Guide to Cooking Farm-Fresh Seasonal Produce”. This $16 book includes an easy-to-follow format with vegetables listed from A to Z. We will have a limited number of these cookbooks available, so if you are interested in purchasing these books, and they are no longer at your site, please let us know to make a bulk order.

6. PICK UP TIMES & LOCATIONS REMINDER:
Ann Arbor Farmers’ Market (Wed.)–7 A.M. to 12 P.M.
MOVE Fitness & Wellness Studio (Wed)—8 AM to 12 PM
Farm (Wed.)–10 A.M. to 7 P.M.
Washtenaw Food Hub (Wed.) –6 P.M. to 8 P.M.
Pure Pastures (Wed.) –9 A.M. To 7 P.M.
Farm (Fri.)–2 P.M. to 7 P.M.
Community High School (Sat.) –7 A.M. to 12 P.M.
Washtenaw Food Hub (Sat.)—9 A.M. to 12 P.M.
Chelsea Farmers’ Market (Sat.)–8 A.M. to 12 P.M.

BURDOCK ROOT IS MEDICINAL & TASTY!
*Every week we try to write a feature article, which can be informative or purely reflective. Sometimes some of our farm crew or other CSA members will contribute their thoughts or their research as well. Perhaps you will find this information interesting and useful or these musings/reflections entertaining and thought-provoking each week. Enjoy!

The burdock root is an unusual vegetable in this country (although it grows wild throughout much of Europe and the United States). Also known by its Japanese name, Gobo, the burdock root is native to northern China and Siberia.

It has predominantly been an important vegetable in Japan, cultivated there since the 10th century. The Japanese believe Gobo to be a strong blood purifier, a support to healthy liver function, a tonic after sickness, and an aid to arthritis and skin diseases.

The burdock root belongs to the specialty market in this country, mostly found in Asian groceries. Most Americans are familiar with burdock as a common weed with annoying ëburrsí. They stick literally to anything, especially clothing and fur that transports their opportunistic seed pod to a new location. The tenacious ëburrí supposedly inspired the inventor and creator of Velcro.

Nutritionally, the burdock root offers a wealth of minerals, such as iron, chromium, magnesium, silicon, calcium, and potassium in a very high fiber package.

To prepare burdock root, scrub the root well to remove soil and tiny root hairs, but you do not need to peel, unless you desire it. The skin contains the flavor and the nutrition. The roots must be cooked. Shred or thinly slice to insure tenderness. When cooking with other vegetables, add burdock first and cook until almost tender before adding the others. Add burdock to soups, stews, or a broth. Steam and serve hot, dipped in soy sauce.

RECIPES

SIMPLE ROASTED ASPARAGUS WITH BALSAMIC GLAZE (from “Detroit Free Press” May 24, 2015)
1 1/2 lb. asparagus (trimmed & washed)
1 1/2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper
vegetable oil cooking spray
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
2 to 3 lemon wedges, optional

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place asparagus on large baking sheet, drizzle with oil, season with salt and pepper, and toss to coat. Spread out spears on baking sheet, and roast for 10 to 15 minutes, turning once. Meanwhile to prepare the glaze, mix vinegar and brown sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly until sugar is dissolved. Reduce heat to low and simmer until glaze is reduced by half, about 5 to 8 minutes. Glaze should coat the back of a spoon. Transfer to serving dish and if desired, sprinkle spears with lemon juice wedges. Drizzle with balsamic glaze and serve.

KINPIRA GOBO (SPICY BURDOCK ROOT SAUTE) Serves 4
3 med burdock roots
1 carrot
1 Tbsp tamari or soy sauce
1 tsp rice wine or apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 tsp honey
1 Tbsp sesame oil
1/4 tsp hot pepper flakes
2 tsp toasted sesame seeds

Scrub burdock root. Cut into 2-inch matchstick pieces. To remove bitterness, soak pieces in water for 20 minutes. Change water and repeat 2 times. Peel carrot and cut into 2-inch matchsticks. Mix soy sauce, vinegar, and honey. Stir-fry carrot and burdock for 3 minutes. Add pepper flakes and cook 30 seconds. Add sauce mixture and cook 1 minute. Serve garnished with toasted sesame seeds.

YOUNG TURNIP SALAD WITH APPLES AND LEMON DRESSING (from Farmer John’s Cookbook by John Peterson and Angelic Organics) Makes about 2 cups.
1 cup grated raw young turnips (about 2-4 medium/small turnips)
1 cup peeled and grated tart apples (Granny Smith–about 1 large apple)
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Toss the turnips, apples, parsley, lemon juice, and vegetable oil in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
*Note: For a sweet treat, try tossing in some raisins, or top with chopped and freshly toasted pecans or walnuts.