Often times, we are asked about working full time and doing the CSA. Many are surprised that we choose to use some of our free time in this endeavor. For me, I find myself returning to the phrase “inborn fondness” found in the FFA Creed and to the 4-H Pledge of pledging “my hands to larger service.”
So I reflected back on the FFA Creed and the phrase “inborn fondness.” The FFA Creed’s first few paragraphs read:
I believe in the future of agriculture, with a faith born not of words but of deeds – achievements won by the present and past generations of agriculturists; in the promise of better days through better ways, even as the better things we now enjoy have come to us from the struggles of former years.
I believe that to live and work on a good farm, or to be engaged in other agricultural pursuits, is pleasant as well as challenging; for I know the joys and discomforts of agricultural life and hold an inborn fondness for those associations which, even in hours of discouragement, I cannot deny.
To me inborn fondness means the love for what you do like the smell of the soil, the appreciation of nature, the wonders of miracles witness and a desire to give and do your best in given circumstances for the betterment of all. We try to instill this through action with our children.
One of those particular ways of sharing our inborn fondness is helping our children learn how to give back. This past week, the boys enjoyed making the box in the above photo and helping to assemble products from our CSA as a donation to the local Montessori fundraiser. It was a great way to give back to a community that has been so supportive of all of us.
We also had a fun opportunity to start a chick hatching project at their elementary school. Helping others to learn more about agriculture and to share our inborn fondness is a privilege.
We thank all of you for giving us the opportunity to share this growing season with all of you. No growing season is the same, as much as we try to maintain many consistencies, Mother Nature reminds us that she is always in control and keeps it unpredictable. Thank you for letting us share our inborn fondness of agriculture this growing season with all of you!
Note: A quick update as we close out the year, look for some Red, White and Blue popcorn later this fall. Once the popcorn has dried to the right moisture content to actually pop into the snack we all enjoy, we will contact you for a delivery.
Boxes of Produce
This list is prepared before we harvest your share. Some guesswork is involved! We do our best to predict which crops will be ready to harvest, but sometimes crops are on the list that are not in the share, and sometimes crops will be in the share even though they’re not on the list. Remember food safety in your kitchen when preparing, always wash your hands before working with your produce and always wash your produce before eating. Some of the crops are ran under cold well water to take the field heat off of them so they last longer in your refrigerators. They are not washed – just cooled. So remember to wash your vegetables before eating.
Thank you for your support of our CSA. Enjoy the produce!
Black Seeded Simpson, Spinach and Red Oak Leaf Lettuce – I just love to have fresh lettuce and spinach from the garden this time of year. While I love the fall colors, this crop is a joy to bring in my lunch to work.
Kale – Brings beautiful color and more nutrients to the dish.
Beets – Detroit Dark Red Beets in your box. Boil on your stove top for about 1/2 hour – take them out of the water, using a paper towel gently rub the paper towel over the beet and the skins will come right off, slice into pieces and serve with butter. Slice them and freeze for an easy accompaniment to a meal this winter or cut into chunks and place in Ziploc bag to use in homemade soup this winter. Or blend them up, freeze in ice cube trays and use in smoothies or spaghetti sauce etc.
Carrots – Nantes carrots – Do you cook the carrots and the family doesn’t eat them all? I will place the left overs in the blender and then freeze that mixture in ice cube trays. Once frozen, store in a bag in the freezer. I will then use one or two “cubes” of frozen carrots in my spaghetti sauce.
Peppers – The peppers are really starting to come in. You have sweet cherry stuffer hybrid pepper, sweet thunderbolt hybrid and green peppers in your box. You also have the option of some hot dragon cayenne peppers. Cut up the extra peppers and place in a bag then place in freezer for use throughout the year.
Garlic – Enjoy the fresh garlic. I use a hand-held garlic press to crush and peel my garlic. It is awesome and definitely the tool of the week! Here are some garlic recipes to check out.
Onions – Walla Walla Onions
Butternut Squash – My favorite squash. Check out the recipes from Martha Stewart. Refer back to last week’s blog on my how to cook in the oven and freeze for use throughout the year.
Red Norland Potatoes – Red Norland potatoes are versatile potatoes – great for boiling, potato salad, and I have had success with them as French fries.
Blue Potatoes – check this link out to learn more about different potato varieties.
Masquerade Potatoes – We love the taste of this variety. The outside color makes this a fun and beautiful variety to have in the kitchen.
Kennebec Potatoes – Great baking potato. Check out harvesting potatoes in Idaho.
Cilantro, Basil and Parsley – Plenty to share – take a snip or a plant home and freeze or dry the herb for use in stews, etc during the rest of the year. Here are some more ideas on how to preserve herbs.
Corn Shock – If you didn’t get yours last week do to the rains, please let us know.
Pumpkins and Gourds
Recipe of the Week
Potato Bread Cinnamon Rolls
Wondering what to do with your leftover mashed potatoes? I use them in this potato bread dough . and either make buns or cinnamon rolls.
This is one of my favorite bread recipes and was discovered after a summer of trying different recipes to bring to the fair for one of my 4-H projects which eventually earned a purple ribbon several year ago:)
I freeze the mashed potatoes in 1 cup quantities for a double batch of the recipe. I also freeze the bread as buns or cinnamon rolls. After forming the bread into buns or cinnamon rolls, I let them rise the second time and then I freeze them. When I want to bake them, I simply place the frozen rolls in the oven, turn the oven on to preheat, and once the oven is preheated allow them to cook for the alloted time. Steve has commented several times that he is so glad I figured this out.
In your boxes this week. So we decided to try these – Steve does not like beets and I do not like pickles. But this combination was ok by both of us. Please note that there are recipes for refrigerator pickled beets that do not require any canning.
7 pounds of 2 to 2 1/2 inch diameter beets
4 cups vinegar (5 percent)
1 ½ teaspoons canning or pickling salt
2 cups sugar
2 cups water
2 cinnamon sticks
12 whole cloves
Sliced onion (optional)
Yield: About 8 pints
Store jars in a cool, dark place and let set for 6-8 weeks before opening.
Source: University of Minnesota