week-4-june-17-23-2012

Tantre Farm CSA Newsletter
WEEK 4
June 17-23, 2012

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.

We also try to keep the formatted newsletter to a 2-page minimum, which means that we don’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. Keep in mind the internet is overflowing with information, including pictures of almost everything that we grow.

THIS WEEK’S SHARE

FAVA BEANS: (also called faba bean, horse bean, or broad bean) the pod is inedible and looks like a large bean pod; the bean seed resembles a very large lima bean with a tart, pungent flavor; fresh fava beans should be shelled from pod if skin seems tough, but bean seed can be eaten raw, skin and all, if young enough.
-To skin fava beans: Blanch for 1 minute, then drain and cool. With your thumbnail, pull open the sprout end and squeeze the bean out of its skin.
-How to use: Stew skinned beans in a little butter, oil or cream seasoned with savory, thyme or sage. Sauté with other vegetables and toss with pasta. Good in soups. Lots of recipes on the internet.
-How to store: Store fresh, unshelled beans in the refrigerator up to a week; once shelled, blanched and skinned, favas can be frozen in plastic containers for longer storage; shelled beans are best used within a few days. See “Beans” for recipes in the A to Z Cookbook, if you have it, and also this newsletter. Delicious!

BABY BEETS & GREENS (mostly): medium-tall, red-veined green leaves with small beets attached. * The beet greens are especially delicious right now.
-How to use: greens can be substituted for spinach and chard.
-How to store: separate roots from leaves and store unwashed in plastic bags in hydrator drawer of refrigerator for up to 2 weeks; store greens wrapped in damp cloth in plastic bag for up to 1 week.

FRESH HERBS: In general, store herbs upright with cut stems in 1 or 2 inches of water and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.
You may CHOOSE ONE from the following:
Italian Flat-leaf Parsley—flat, glossy, dark green leaves have a strong parsley/celery flavor for use dried or fresh; high in vitamins A and C, and other minerals, such as iron. See other “Parsley” recipes in “A to Z” cookbook.
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.
Rosemary—pine needle-like leaves used with potatoes, bread doughs, risottos, mixed vegetables, and meat dishes, especially lamb, as well as in sweet dishes such as lemonade, creams, custards, and syrups; very strongly flavored, so use sparingly, finely chopped, or remove from dish after cooking; considered a memory stimulant and medicinally used for headaches.
Sage–an herb with long, narrow, grayish-green leaves; a musky aroma and a warm and spicy taste; used in making sausages, stews, breads, and teas; enhances meats, vegetables, salads, pickles, and cheese.

KALE: You will receive Red Russian Kale (the stems are purple, and leaves are deep gray-green, purple-veined, flat, non-curled, and tooth-edged.) or Green Curly (well-ruffled, curly green leaves on green stems; this variety makes a good, roasted “kale chip”). See Week 1 newsletter for more information.
– How to use: for salads, soups, and light cooking
– How to store: keep in plastic bag or damp towel in refrigerator for up to 1 week

LETTUCE: You will receive Red/Green Leaf, Romaine, Bib, or Oak.
– 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”): some of these are a bit bulbous, but full of great fiber and antioxidants, high in potassium and source of vitamins C and B-6.
-How to use: 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.

SHELLING PEAS: small, round green seeds in easy to shell pod with delicious flavor for fresh eating and freezing.
-How to use: Add to soups, stews, sautés, or stir-fries.
-How to store: Refrigerate in plastic bag for 4-5 days. If kept too long, their sweet flavor and crisp texture diminishes.

WHITE HAKUREI TURNIPS and GREENS: A white salad turnip with round, smooth roots that have a sweet, fruity flavor with a crisp, tender texture. See Week 1 newsletter.
– How to use: good in salads and soups, roasted, steamed, sautéed,
– 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. VACATIONS or OUT OF TOWN: Please remember to contact us at least by Sunday to make changes in pick up days or locations, especially with the 4th of July vacations coming up (yes, we do have pick up on the 4th!). Also keep in mind that changes need to be made within the same week (Sun.-Sat.), not into the next week of distribution.

2. KID FARM HIKES: Come join us for a guided monthly exploratory walk around Tantre Farm starting this week on Friday, June 22, at 2 PM. We’ll use all our senses as we take an approx. 30 minute hike with CSA member, Sheila Schueller, and explore the farm’s fields, wetlands, and forest. Sheila teaches ecology and field biology classes at Eastern Michigan University and the University of Michigan. Meet at the Distribution Shed at 2 pm. No RSVP necessary, but if you email that you plan to attend, then we know to wait for you. Hikes will also be offered on July 27 and August 31.

3. NEW!! BIKE-IN MOVIE NIGHTS! We invite you to outdoor movies about FOOD at the Washtenaw Food Hub while eating local food snacks. (Biking is encouraged, but drivers are also allowed and embraced.) Showtime at 9:30. Donations accepted. Bring a chair or a blanket. The next movie showing is on June 22 called “Weight of the Nation: Challenges”. Visit bikeinmovienight.com for all the information!

4. U-PICK AT THE FARM: Please contact us ahead of time by e-mail or phone unless you are picking on a Farm Distribution Day (Wed. or Fri.). Best days to come for u-pick are Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays, since our workers have not picked as much on those days. No u-pick available on Sat. mornings, since we are at two Farmers Markets then.
Strawberries–$5/qt. You can pick into our quart baskets, but to take them home, please bring your own containers or transfer them into donated berry containers at the Distribution Shed.
Shelling & Snap Peas–$1/lb. Come and get peas for freezing.

5. WEEDING VOLUNTEERS NEEDED: There are always a generous amount of weeds on the farm. If you are interested in helping out–even if it’s just for 10 or 15 minutes before you pick up your box at the farm, come join us. Please contact us any day of the week or evenings until dark. We could really use the help with the weeds right now. Thanks for volunteering!

6. PICK UP TIMES & LOCATIONS REMINDER:
Ann Arbor Farmers’ Market (Wed.)–7 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.
Farm (Fri.)–2 P.M. to 7 P.M.
Community High School (Sat.) –7 A.M. to 12 P.M.
Washtenaw Food Hub (Sat.)– 7 A.M. to 12 P.M.
Chelsea Farmers’ Market (Sat.)–8 A.M. to 12 P.M.

THE FARMER’S APPETITE
By Elizabeth Olenzek (2012 Tantre Farm intern)

Farm to Table is definitely a catchphrase of 2012, and it holds a special significance for Tantrè interns. We pass our afternoons in strawberry fields, pea patches, and shaded mushroom forests. We spend each day working with our hands and backs, perpetually picking and shifting. Our time given to the lives of plants, our energies directed toward the schedule of harvest and weed, harvest and weed.

The daily intensity of our work means its yields are particularly satisfying, especially when they extend beyond the reaches of the farm. As a group, we interns often venture into Ann Arbor to satisfy our farmhand appetites at one restaurant or another, choosing the establishments that hold a relationship with Tantrè such as Silvio’s Pizzeria, The Raven’s Club, Grange Kitchen and Bar, or Pacific Rim. These eateries provide the occasion for a bit of extravagance—we exchange our muddy overalls for clean ones, enjoy the attention of the always-welcoming chefs, and literally taste the fruit of our labors. Chewing a leaf of arugula that has been prepared by an incredible chef (as opposed to stuffing it into one’s mouth in the midst of harvest) really provides a blissful content centered on wholesomeness.

We plant the food, we pick the food, and we savor the food at its prime. This circularity is both ancient and complete, the beat of the farmer’s heart.

RECIPES

MOROCCAN BISSARA—or FRESH FAVA BEAN DIP (from Capay Organic Farm CSA “Farm Fresh To You” website)
1 to 1-1/2 lbs. fresh fava beans, shelled, peeled if large
3 tbs. fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
4 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp. salt
pita wedges, raw carrots, or crackers for serving
Fill a medium saucepan with water and bring it to a boil. Blanch the beans for 2 or 3 minutes. Drain, reserving 3 tablespoons of the cooking liquid. Peel if the beans are large. In a blender or food processor, combine half the beans, the reserved liquid and the lemon juice. (Add more liquid if you prefer a thinner dip.) Process, scraping down the sides with a spatula, until the mixture is fairly smooth. Add the remaining beans and the oil, and process until smooth. Transfer to a serving bowl and stir in the salt and cumin. Sprinkle with the parsley. Serve with pita bread, vegetables, or crackers for dipping.

SESAME BEET GREENS (Learning to Eat Locally)
greens of 4 to 6 beets, cut off 1 inch from root
1 Tbsp. sesame oil
3 cloves garlic, crushed or minced garlic scape
1/4 c. sesame seeds
1 Tbsp. soy sauce
Rinse and dry beet greens. Slice them across the stem into 1 inch strips. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat, tilting pan to coat. Stirring constantly with a spatula, toss in garlic, sesame seeds, and about half of the sliced beet greens. Shake on soy sauce and add remaining greens. Continue stirring until all greens have wilted and stems are tender (about 3 to 4 minutes). Move greens to a serving bowl and serve hot or at room temperature. 6 small servings.

ROSEMARY LEMONADE (from Farmer John’s Cookbook: The Real Dirt on Vegetables by John Peterson) Serves 2 to 4.
4 cups water
3 – 6 sprigs fresh rosemary
3/4 cup sugar (or more, to taste)
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 3 large lemons)
Bring the water to a boil in a medium pot, and then reduce the heat so that the water barely simmers. Add the rosemary sprigs; cover and steep the rosemary for 45 minutes. Remove the pot from heat and remove the rosemary sprigs. (If necessary, strain the mixture to remove loose leaves.) Add the sugar; stir until dissolved. Set aside to cool. Put the lemon juice into a large plastic or glass container and add the cooled rosemary syrup; stir until well combined. Taste the lemonade and sweeten it with additional sugar if desired. Refrigerate until cold. For an extra summery kick, garnish each serving with a sprig of fresh lemon balm or mint.

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