2019: Week 8, July 14-20

Tantre Farm CSA Newsletter
WEEK #8
July 14-20, 2019

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.

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.  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.

If you are new to our CSA, since you signed up with a prorated share, you can find all past newsletters on our website under the NEWSLETTERS tab.

THIS WEEK’S SHARE

GREEN or YELLOW BEANS:  You will receive E-Z Pick (a round, tender, dark green, snap bean with good sweet flavor) or Rocdor (long, slender, yellow bean; meaty, firm texture and no watery taste).  
-How to use: raw in salads, steamed, sautéed, stir-fried, etc.
-How to store: refrigerate in plastic bag for up to 1 week.

GOLDEN BEETS AND GREENS: round, smooth, deep red roots with sweet flavor and medium-tall, red-veined green leaves.   See Week 6 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

CARROTS (Mokum):  a very sweet, slender, “pencil carrot” with edible green leaves.  Greens are delicious in soups and also salads.
-How to use:  Can be used raw as carrot sticks, grated in salads or juiced; steamed or sautéed, in stews, soups, casseroles, stir-fries
-How to store:  Remove greens from roots and refrigerate dry and unwashed roots in plastic bag for up to 2 weeks; greens may last up to a week refrigerated in plastic bag.

CUCUMBERS: long, cylindrical, green-skinned fruit of the gourd family with mild, crisp flesh.
-How to use:  raw or pickled in salads or sandwiches, can also be julienned, sautéed, or baked.  
-How to store:  store them in a sealed plastic bag in refrigerator crisper drawer for up to a week; use up leftovers as soon as possible.

SAVOY CABBAGE:  loose, full head of crinkled leaves varying from dark to pale green; mellow-flavored cabbage considered to be superior for cooking.  Can be used the same as green cabbage.  See Week 7 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

FRESH GARLIC:  a bulb of several papery white cloves; believed to help in fighting infections, cancer prevention, bolstering the immune system, lowering blood pressure and preventing heart disease, used as an expectorant or decongestant, and at least some people believe that it can ward off vampires and insects.
-Cooking tips:  To mellow garlic’s strong flavors opt for longer cooking; to enjoy its more pungent flavors and increased medicinal benefit, use it raw or with minimal cooking.
-How to use:  minced raw in salad dressings, sautéed and added to stir-fries, meats, vegetables; make garlic butter with 1/2 cup of softened butter mashed with four minced cloves of garlic; try roasting garlic by cutting off tops of garlic bulb, so cloves are exposed, brush with olive oil and bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees, squeeze garlic out of skins and spread on a good, crusty bread.
-How to store: fresh garlic can be stored in an open, breathable basket in a cool, dark place for many months.

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.  
You may CHOOSE ONE bunch (NOT one bunch of each) from the following 4 options:

1. Dill: feathery green leaves that go well with fish, potatoes, beets, carrots, and yogurt sauces; considered a good luck symbol by early Romans.   The dill flower roughly resembles Queen Anne’s Lace, the flower of the dill plant is spiny, yellow and, like the leaves and seeds, edible; the flower has a slightly stronger taste than the needle-like leaves; good added to a soup, stew or the bottom of pickle jars; chop the flowers and add to dips and sauces.

2. Black-Stemmed Peppermint: superior fragrance and flavor; forest green leaves with deep purple veins and stems, purple flowers; leaves are good as a hot or iced tea, and adds a delicious flavor when minced and added to cooked peas, carrots, potatoes, salads, and fresh strawberries.

3. Curly Parsley: curly, dark green leaves, often used as a garnish, but can be used the same as flat-leaf parsley; high in vitamins A and C; especially good in omelets, scrambled eggs, mashed potatoes, soups, pasta and vegetable dishes.

4. Oregano: member of the mint family and is similar to marjoram, but not as sweet and more pungent flavor and aroma; good in soups and tomato-based dishes.

*Genovese Basil—ALL SHARES will receive basil this week, an herb with sweet, spicy, shiny, green leaves. We supply it with root attached, so it will last up to a week or 2 when stored in a jar, vase, or glass of water on your counter or table top. Do NOT refrigerate!  

KALE (Green Curly): well-ruffled, curly green leaves on green stems; this variety makes a good, roasted “kale chip”.   See Week 2 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

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

SUMMER ONIONS: slightly larger bulbs (“baby bulb onions”) than green onions, but both bulb and leaves are still edible; can be prepared like cippolini onions.
-How to use: can be grilled or roasted whole as a vegetable or chopped in salads, soups, and other dishes for flavor
-How to store: wrap in damp towel/plastic bag in fridge for 2-7 days.

SUGAR SNAP PEAS: flat-round pod of edible-pod pea.  See Week 6 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

SUMMER SQUASH/ZUCCHINI:  You will receive some variety of Green or Yellow Zucchini (gourmet golden or green zucchini with uniform, cylindrical fruits) or Slick Pik Summer Squash (long, yellow straight neck with good flavor). See Week 7 newsletter for usage and storage tips.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

1. THANKS TO THOSE WHO CAME to the SUMMER WORK PARTY on July 14.  Thanks so much for joining us for delicious potluck food, berry picking, and good companionship at the Summer Work Party, while CSA Member and local musician, Gary Koppin, played guitar.  We clipped about 100 pounds garlic, stripped some dried herbs and put them in jars, and harvested about 60 pounds of green and yellow beans for the new local community market  that opened a few weeks ago in Chelsea called “Agricole Farm Stop” (www.agricolefarmstop.com).

2. EDIBLE & MEDICINAL PLANT WALK SERIES July 31 from 6-8 PM (Last Wednesday of every month May through October)
We are offering a monthly plant walk at Tantre Farm with the guidance of our local foraging expert, Rachel Mifsud. On these leisurely walks we will be looking for edible, medicinal, and otherwise useful plants and mushrooms. The cost is $15 for Tantre CSA members or $20 for nonmembers. Kids 12 and under FREE! You may bring cash, check or pre-register at https://squareup.com/store/willforageforfood

3. WANTED–TOMATO PICKERS:   Is there anyone interested in helping us pick tomatoes any weekday morning for the next few weeks.  We are a little short-handed, so please contact us!  

4. PICK UP TIMES & LOCATIONS REMINDER:
**If you need to switch to different pick up sites throughout the season that usually works for all but the “limited sites”, using the Membership Actions section on the registration page.  These sites have less space to drop share boxes at, so are considered “limited”. Please always email ahead to see if they are at capacity before making any switches on your own.
*Ann Arbor Farmers’ Market (Wed.)—7 A.M. to 12 P.M.
*MOVE Fitness & Wellness Studio (Wed)—8 A.M. to 12 P.M.
*Farm (Wed.)—10 A.M. to 7 P.M.
*Washtenaw Food Hub (Wed.)—6 P.M. to 8 P.M.
*Pure Pastures (Wed.) (limited site) —10 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.
*Argus-Packard (Sat) (limited site)—10 A.M. to 6 P.M.

EAT YOUR CARROT GREEN TOPS (THE LEAVES) (from www.carrotmuseum.co.uk/recipes.html#tops)
There is some debate about whether you can eat the green leaves.  Despite the presence of celery and carrots in the carrot family of Apiaceae (“umbellifers”), many other members of the family are highly poisonous, but not carrot.  They ARE edible and are highly nutritive, rich in protein, minerals and vitamins.  The tops of the carrots are loaded with potassium which can make them bitter, so the use of them in food is limited.  However, it is edible, so you may mix some in with a mixed lettuce salad.  You may also use it for garnish.  Combine your common sense and your creative skills, and invent something!  That’s what makes cooking fun.  It is a form of art.  Carrot greens are high in vitamin K, which is lacking in the carrot itself.

The leaves do contain furocoumarins that may cause allergic contact dermatitis from the leaves, especially when wet.  Later exposure to the sun may cause mild photodermatitis.  (This is NOT the same as ‘poisonous’ – it will only affect susceptible people with allergies to the plant. Some people have the same reaction to yarrow, ragwort, chamomile etc.).  There is a distinct difference between toxins and allergens.  Carrots (Daucus carota), whether wild or domesticated, are not toxic, they are allergenic.  This is like peanuts, which are not toxic but can kill those who are allergic to them.  It is however important that any wild plant be positively identified before it is used for food.

Carrot greens have antiseptic qualities, so they have been added to mouthwashes and, mixed with honey, to disinfect sores.  They are also diuretic (increase urine flow), and can help treat kidney disease and edema.

Here are some cooking suggestions.  The carrot leaves are pretty, but bitter, so what about using it on something that is robust in flavor, but boring in appearance?  Decorate a pate with it, and glace it with aspic. What about “carrot top pesto vinaigrette”?  You can hide the bitterness under the tangy vinegar, and sweeten it slightly with some honey.  Try sauteing the chopped carrot tops lightly in olive oil with garlic and onion.  Then add other garden-grown veggies (the carrots themselves, zucchini, tomato, peppers, fresh herbs), sauté some more, then fold the entire garden mish-mash inside a whole wheat tortilla, brown it, and call it a quesadilla.  Truly a great vegan treat, and the carrot tops gave a nice crunchy texture. It is a delightful garden feast.  I recommend adding your carrot tops to other things you may already have simmering on the stove.  
**Carrot Top Soup is a favorite at the farm. Please try it below!!

RECIPES

CARROT TOP SOUP (Local Flavors by Deborah Madison) Serves 4.
1 bunch (6 small to medium) carrots, the tops and roots
2 Tbs. butter
3 Tbs. white rice
2 large leeks (or 2 summer onions)
2 thyme sprigs
2 Tbs. chopped dill or parsley
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
6 c. vegetable or chicken stock or water
Pull the lacy leaves of the carrot greens off their stems (2 to 3 cups, loosely packed).  Wash, then chop finely.  Grate the carrots, or finely chop them.  Melt the butter in a soup pot.  Add the carrot tops and carrots, rice, leeks, thyme, and dill.  Cook for several minutes, turning everything a few times, then season with 1-1/2 teaspoons salt and add the stock.  Bring to a boil and simmer until the rice is cooked, 16 to 18 minutes.  Season with salt, pepper and serve.

SWEET GREEN BEAN, CARROT, AND WALNUT STIR-FRY
1 qt green beans, stems removed
2 carrots, sliced medium-thin
2 cups walnuts (halves or pieces – and feel free to substitute cashews or favorite nuts)
1 cup raisins (optional)
3 Tbsp cooking oil
2 Tbsp tamari
2 Tbsp maple syrup or barley malt or brown sugar etc.

Steam carrots 3 minutes, add beans and steam another 2-3 minutes, then place in pan (cast iron recommended) where oil is already hot.  Saute 3 minutes then make space in the center of the pan and add walnuts, then sweetener and tamari, then raisins if desired (it will already be fairly sweet).  If you wished to be slightly more meticulous, you could combine nuts, raisins, sweetener, and tamari in a separate bowl and mix well before adding to stir-fry.  Stir-fry another 3-5 minutes and enjoy!