Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Newsletter July 13

Well, no more raccoons this week, and no more dead chickens (we think). We decided to order some more peeps to increase our egg supply, though they won’t be laying till the fall, probably. We’ll have to start culling some of the older chickens, too. That will be Todd’s project.
We’re happy to report that we have tomatoes to put in to the bags this week, though only in the full shares. Hopefully there will be plenty for all next week. The first crop of green beans was eaten very heavily by the bean beetles, and we’re hoping they’ve gotten their fill and will leave the next planting alone. It seems like they struck later in the season the last two years. Perhaps the rain gave them an early start. The sweet peppers are coming along, so they should be making appearances in the bags in the next few weeks.
In baby news, Elliot turned six months old on Sunday. He’s got the chubbiest legs ever, and is rolling over and getting close to sitting up. One of our neighbors had a walking chair they didn’t need any longer and gave to us, so his new favorite activity is rolling around the kitchen yelling at the top of his lungs. It’s delightful. He’s a total ham, and everyone at the farmers’ market adores him. It’s really nice because Todd and I have small families that mostly live far away, so Elliot has a local extended family and is constantly getting interaction with new people.

This Week (*full share only):

Squash and Zucchini
Yellow Onions
Hungarian Hot Wax Peppers
Herb share: parsley

What to do with it:

Here’s a really nice sauce you can make with the cucumbers. Just chop one up (or half of one) and mix it into some plain yogurt. You can add chopped mint if you have it. It’s great for pitas filled with lamb or spiced chickpeas. You can add chopped tomatoes as well. Our friends gave us an easy wheat tortilla recipe and if you make the rounds a little thicker, it makes an excellent flatbread for all occasions.
We stuffed zucchini the other night, and while we used the eight-ball kind, you could do it just as well with the regular zucchini, though it probably won’t take as long to cook. Large stuffed eight balls took about 30 minutes at 400 degrees. We scooped out the pulp, sautéed some onions and garlic, added the chopped pulp, and mixed all of that with some cooked quinoa (but you could use rice just as well). When it was almost fully baked, we added some grated parmesan to the top. We ought to have added some basil – we’ll have to try that next time.
Okra is a stumper of a vegetable. Most people hate it because it’s slimy. To avoid the slime, soak chopped okra in ice water before cooking it. You can then drain it, dust it with flour and cornmeal (you can skip this step, but it makes for a nice texture), and fry it in olive oil or butter. Add it to pasta sauce with your other veggies. Or you can try the zucchini-okra frittata on our website. You can also batter and fry whole okra pods. If you like pickles, try pickled okra. It’s surprisingly delicious.

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