2017: Week 17, September 17-23

Tantre Farm CSA Newsletter
WEEK #17
Sept. 17-23, 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.

We try to keep the printed newsletter to a 2-page maximum, which means that we won’t list all the share items’ descriptions every week, but refer you to previous newsletters for information on items that have already appeared in your shares.

THIS WEEK’S SHARE

BROCCOLI: deep emerald green, tiny buds that are clustered on top of stout, edible stems; high in vitamins A, C, calcium, potassium, and iron; known as an anti-cancer vegetable. See Week 4 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

SWEET CORN (Vision): exceptionally tender, super sweet, yellow ears; great for fresh eating and freezing. See Week 11 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

GARLIC: a bulb of several papery white cloves; believed to help in fighting infections, cancer prevention, and bolstering the immune system. See Week 5 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

FRESH HERBS: In general, store herbs upright with cut stems in 1 or 2 inches of water and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks or wrap in slightly dampened cloth and store in refrigerator.
*Parsley: ALL SHARES will receive either “Italian Flat Leaf” or “Curly” this week. Both varieties are interchangeable in recipes. Dark green leaves with a strong parsley/celery flavor for use dried or fresh; high in vitamins A and C, and other minerals, such as iron; especially good in omelets, scrambled eggs, mashed potatoes, soups, pasta and vegetable dishes, as well as, sauces. see other “Parsley” recipes in A to Z Cookbook.

LETTUCE: You will receive lettuce, which may include Green or Red Leaf or Romaine. See Week 1 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

MUSHROOMS (Oyster): white, golden, or gray oyster-shaped cap with a mild, anise, earthy odor. If you don’t care for mushrooms, then leave them for someone else or gift them to a friend!
-How to use: brush off dirt to clean or wipe with damp cloth, do not wash or submerge in water; good grilled, sauteed, steamed, in soups, and in sandwiches.
-How to store: place in paper bag or wax bag and keep in refrigerator for up to 5-7 days.

ONIONS: You will receive Mars Red (purple-red skinned onion with sweet flavor). See Week 10 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

SWEET RED PEPPERS: You will receive Carmen (6 inch long, tapered fruit that ripens from green to a deep “carmine” red; sweet taste in salads and when roasted and fully red-ripe) or Red Knight Bell (big, blocky, thick-walled, green-to-red pepper with sweet flesh).
-How to use: eat raw for best nutrient retention; can be added to soups, stews, omelets, quiches, stir-fries, etc. Excellent roasted!!
-How to store: refrigerate in hydrator drawer for 1-2 weeks.

POTATOES: You will receive Mountain Rose (rosy-skinned inside and out, these versatile, all-purpose spuds are deliciously moist, but not waxy textured; extra nutritious, and high in antioxidants; excellent baked, mashed or fried) or Yukon Gold (yellowish brown skin with yellow dry flesh and pink eyes; long storage and good tasting. See Week 10 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

RADISHES: you will receive Pink Beauty (pink-colored root with mild, spicy flavor).
-How to use: raw, roasted, used in soups, sliced in salads, sandwiches, or stir-fries, grated in slaws; radish greens are delicious in soups or stir-fries; excellent source of vitamins A, C, and the B’s!
-How to store: refrigerate in plastic bag/damp towel for 1-2 weeks.

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.
See Week 1 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

TOMATOES: You will receive some of any of the following: Geronimo (newer variety but already one of the most widely used beefsteak varieties; fruits are firm, nice red color and good taste), San Marzano (early, large classic Italian roma tomato; delicious, balanced acidic flavor and meaty flesh makes for good sauce and paste), Mountain Magic (bright red, round tomatoes with very sweet flavor; excellent in salads), Nova (beautiful, bright orangish-yellow grape tomato with excellent, sweet flavor), or Sakura (early, delicious, bright red medium-sized cherry tomato with sweet flavor). **Once again you will also receive a few large HEIRLOOM tomato varieties, such as Brandywine (large, heirloom, beefsteak tomato–often over 1 lb–with a deep pink skin and smooth red flesh; known as one of the best-tasting tomatoes) or Rose (deep pink, heirloom, medium-sized tomato, which is meaty and flavorful) or Striped German (very large, meaty, 1-2 lb fruit with red-yellow stripes and dense, juicy, red-yellow streaked flesh; excellent sweet, complex flavors; a Mennonite family heirloom from the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia). Our feature article is about Heirlooms, so you can know how special they are. We pick heirloom tomatoes slightly green sometimes to prevent splitting and damage, while transporting. Heirlooms are softer and more perishable when ripe, but the flavor of each is very memorable. Best to store upside down at room temperature until completely ripe. Very easy to can, freeze, and dehydrate for tomato flavors all season long!
-How to freeze: Core the big ones and cut smaller if you like, but just wash and pop the smaller tomatoes right into freezer bags. See Week 9 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

WATERMELON: You will receive Dark Belle (dark-green skin, bright-red flesh, oblong 5-7 lb. fruit with thin rind, and very sweet flavor) or New Orchid (sweet, bright orange flesh with sherbet-like taste and skin has dark green contrast stripes; oval round, medium large “icebox” size; similar to “Sunshine” in appearance, but larger). See Week 10 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

1. ENDING SUMMER CSA DATES: The end is drawing near. This is just a reminder that our summer shares are ending in just a few weeks. That means Oct. 11 (Wed.), Oct. 13 (Fri.), and Oct. 14 (Sat.) are the last distribution days for our Summer Shares.

2. FALL WORK PARTY/END-OF SEASON POTLUCK will be this coming Sunday, Sept. 24, between 1-4 P.M. Our end-of-season potluck will also be at this time, so please bring an hors d’oeuvre, snack, or refreshment to pass. Members are invited to bring family and friends to help harvest squash, pumpkins, and potatoes before the first frost. You may also come just to enjoy the farm and walk around to see the produce and the animals, or just eat at the potluck anytime between 1 and 4 PM. All who come will be able to take something home with them, such as a pumpkin or a winter squash and a flower bouquet. Hope to see you join us!

3. U-PICK AVAILABLE: Please call ahead if you plan to pick on other days besides Farm Distribution Days (Wed. and Fri.), so we can make sure someone is around to help you.
**U-PICK Flowers– You may pick 1 bouquet of up to 15 stems per household for “free” in the u-pick flower garden on the farm. Please feel free to bring clippers and a vase to take it home. Optional donations of $1 or $2 will help to pay for some seed and labor costs. Extra bouquets will cost $4.
**U-PICK Tomatoes—many tomato varieties are ready for picking. Members–$1.00/lb. Non members–$1.50/lb.
**ALREADY PICKED Tomatoes – $1.25/lb. Members. Discounted half bushel boxes of Romas at the farm & market for $25.

4. WEEDING VOLUNTEERS NEEDED!! We still could use the extra hands in getting some major weeding done. Please contact us.

5. EXTENDED FALL CSA AND THANKSGIVING CSA REGISTRATION ARE COMING SOON! In the next few weeks, Sign Up links will open, so please look up details on our website. You will receive a separate email announcing when registration is open.

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.

WHAT’S AN HEIRLOOM?
(by Joel Heeres, “Tantré alumnus“)

It’s not a loom for your heirs, as you might think. Heirloom fruit and vegetable varieties are hundreds and sometimes thousands of years old. Heirlooms differ in shape, color, size, flavor, and storability, but they all share one characteristic– their seeds can be saved one season to plant in the next. Heirloom varieties have been bred by local farmers and gardeners over many generations and have been established as stable varieties that grow “true to seed“. These varieties are special, because they have been adapted to certain climates over a long time.

Heirloom vegetables are often more flavorful than hybrid vegetables. Hybrids are bred for high productivity, disease and pest resistance, drought resistance, and hardiness. While these traits are undeniably helpful, they often come at the cost of flavor. In addition, farmers cannot save seed from hybrid crops, as they are unstable crosses from two different varieties.

In summary, heirloom crops are beneficial to small farmers and home gardeners, because their seeds can be saved to plant again. They have better flavor and are more unique than hybrids, although they can be less hardy and prone to diseases.

At Tantré Farm, we grow both hybrid and heirloom crops. Some of the crops we grow from heirloom seeds are tomatoes, eggplants, peppers, winter squash, potatoes, onions, kale, beans, turnips, and radishes. Sometimes we will have some varieties of heirlooms only on the market tables, since we may not have a lot of them available. We’ll try to let you know when you are getting heirloom produce in your share box.

RECIPES

SWEET ONION AND WATERMELON SALSA (from Farm-Fresh Recipes by Janet Majure)
2 cups chopped watermelon, seeded
3/4 cup sweet onion
3/4 cup black beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup chopped seeded jalapeno chilies
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt

Mix watermelon, onion, beans, chilies, cilantro, brown sugar, and salt in a bowl. Refrigerate covered for 1 hour to blend flavors. Stir and serve as dip, condiment, or salad.

ITALIAN PARSLEY AND ARUGULA SALAD WITH MUSHROOMS

1 cup parsley leaves, loosely packed, washed, spun dry

1 cup arugula, loosely packed, washed, spun dry

3 firm white cultivated mushrooms; sliced thin

Dash salt

1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

1 1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1/4 cup thinly-sliced red onions, soaked in ice water 15 minutes, drained

Parmesan cheese, shaved in thin curls

In a large bowl toss the parsley, arugula and mushrooms with the salt. Add the oil and toss well. Add the lemon juice and toss well. Season to taste with the black pepper. Divide the salad among plates and add to each portion some of the onions and Parmesan curls.

BROILED MUSHROOMS (from www.recipes.wikia.com) Serves 2-3
1 lb fresh oyster mushrooms, stems removed
6 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
4 garlic cloves, finely minced
4 Tbsp parsley, coarsely chopped
2 Tbsp olive oil
Salt and black pepper, to taste

Preheat the broiler. Clean the mushroom caps with a damp paper towel. Save the stems for stock or to flavor sauces. In a small bowl, combine 4 tablespoons of the lemon juice, the garlic, 3 tablespoons of the parsley, and the oil and pepper. Mix well. Line a 17×11-inch jelly roll pan with foil. Arrange the mushrooms, top side up, on the foil, and brush generously with the lemon juice mixture. Place the mushrooms 4-inches from the heat and broil until just tender, 5-7 minutes. To serve, sprinkle the mushrooms with the remaining 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 1 tablespoon of parsley, salt and pepper to taste.