Rain

Rain

The focus this week really centered around getting things done around the rain. We received over 3 1/2 inches of rain, and it is raining again as I write. We are grateful it hasn’t been more, less or worse as we have seen some really sad weather scenarios in many areas. We pray for those in these situations.

While the rain made tying tomatoes on the trellis’ very muddy, it didn’t stop the progress … only slowed it down. The bright side is that at least the weeds pull super easy, but they are really enjoying this weather.

While it may be soggy we encourage you to take time and enjoy the smell of the rain and the treasures it leaves behind.

Garden Science

A view of the peas. Read more below to learn about the history of snap peas.Delicious!

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Sugar snap peas were first developed in 1952 by cross-breeding a snow pea with a mutant shell pea plant. Researchers hoped that the cross might counteract twisting and buckling seen in varieties at the time. With this cross, they developed a new class of snow pea. Snap peas, like all other peas, are pod fruits. An edible-podded pea is less fibrous, and edible when young. Pods of the edible-podded pea, including snap peas, do not have a membrane and do not open when ripe.

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.

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Enjoy some rhubarb torte. A favorite in our house and super easy.

Rhubarb – One pound equals about 3 cups. Wash, cut the ends off, cut off any bad parts damaged by wind, chop into 1/4 – 1/2 inch pieces. No need to peel. You can freeze it in a Ziploc bag (no blanching) and use for months to come. Check out earlier posts on rhubarb for recipe ideas and the rhubarb torte recipe  pictured here.

Asparagus – Fresh cut asparagus from the Chute’s Farm Fresh Gardens in Aitkin, Minnesota. These farmers are friends of ours who we know from Farm Bureau and also the Minnesota Agriculture and Rural Leadership Program. They had some extra they wanted to share with us, and the delivery time worked out well. They snap the asparagus vs. cutting so that you are getting all edible stalk and should have very minimal amount that you do not eat. Enjoy! See how asparagus is harvested in California. Check out these recipes.

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Red Lettuce following the morning rain. We have had over 2 1/2 inches of rain this past week.

Red Lettuce – The Red lettuce is mixed in with the green lettuce. Give them a try. A very tasty treat.

Black Seeded Simpson Lettuce – One of my favorite garden crops. 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. See how lettuce is grown throughout the year so it is available in our grocery stores even on our cold Minnesota days.

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Spinach with rain drops. Did you know with the varieties of spinach and lettuce we grow, we cut it and it grows back new leaves by the next week.

Spinach – Great for salads – check out last week’s recipe

BeetsNew beets in the boxes this week. An old garden favorite of mine. Learn how to use them here. https://www.marthastewart.com/274226/beet-recipes

Sugar Snap Peas – So delicious. Eat the the whole edible pod. Enjoy this garden favorite.

CilantroDid you know that ¼ cup of cilantro only has 1 calorie. Here are a few ideas from Martha Stewart to use your cilantro. https://www.marthastewart.com/search/results?keys=cilantro

Broiler Chicken – The 1/4 frozen broiler (meat) chicken, raised by the boys, is a chicken that is bred and raised specifically for meat production. When these birds eat the balanced diet specifically made for them by an animal nutritionist, their energy goes to building muscle vs a layer hen’s energy focuses on producing and laying eggs. Hormones and antibiotics are not given to chickens as this is illegal to do in the United States. Learn more at Best Food Facts. Here are some tips to cut the chicken further if desired.  Check here for recipes or simply put in the crockpot frozen , cook on low for 12 hours – I add a can of 7-up, herbs and about 2 Tablespoons of butter. It will be ready for supper that evening.

Fresh cut arrangement – Hosta Leaves and Spirea

Recipe of the Week

We tried this on yogurt and ice cream. It was a success and a quick and easy way to use your rhubarb.

1/3 cup sugar

1/4 cup water

2-1/4 cups sliced fresh or frozen rhubarb

1 teaspoon grated lemon peel

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Pound cake or vanilla ice cream

Source: Taste of Home

Directions

  1. In a small saucepan, bring sugar and water to a boil. Add rhubarb; cook and stir for 5-10 minutes or until rhubarb is tender and mixture is slightly thickened. Remove from the heat; stir in lemon peel and nutmeg.
  2. Serve warm or chilled over pound cake, yogurt or ice cream. Refrigerate leftovers. Yield: 1-1/4 cups.
Perspective and Attitude drive Outcome

Perspective and Attitude drive Outcome

It has been a busy week filled with planting another round of crops and weeding. The weather made it extremely challenging to accomplish.

As you can see, Sam and I raced a storm that had us in a flash flood warning this weekend. We are appreciative that we did not receive the downpour that friends south of us received. Thankfully no lightning at our place – so Sam thought it was a blast to play in the rain immediately following planting sweet potatoes.

I greatly appreciated his willingness to work with speed and understanding of the purposeful outcome we needed to have. So many good life lessons from this including teamwork, do it right the first time so you don’t have to do it over and things can be fun in the rain, one’s perspective and attitude drive the outcome.

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Sam and I planted 50 sweet potatoes. We appreciate the help from our neighbors the Schwakes for their help with sweet potatoes.

An update on what is growing on: the radishes and kohlrabi appear to be loved by an insect this year. Now on the 4th planting, we are hopeful that we can beat the insects on this round. Also, the sugar snap peas are blooming which means edible pea pods are around the corner. In fact, we harvested a handful yesterday so we are hopeful that the bounty will be available next week.

Garden Science

We thought you would enjoy a few of our views this week.

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Looking down the top of a corn plant is always fascinating to see the swirls as the leaves and plant grow. Learn more about the corn plant growth here.

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Blue potatoes are not a GMO. It’s origin is quite interesting. Learn more here  and at the Wisconsin Potato Growers.

Pick-up and Delivery

Remember that pick-up and deliveries will be on the schedule you have arranged with Harner Brothers CSA – please note the exceptions to this which were in the email.

It is your responsibility to know that the pick-up or drop-off time will occur at the agreed upon time, and it is your responsibility as a shareholder to know this and be responsible for the produce at that time. If you are unable to utilize your share that week, it is still your responsibility: find someone else to pick it up or donate it to the food shelf.

Each box is labeled for each family. The same boxes will be used for your family throughout the season. Boxes and containers should be returned the following week. Bags will only be used once.

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.

7-20-13 rhubarb wash and cut ends off

The Harner Bros are the 5th generation to raise this rhubarb originally planted on the family farm near Tracy by their great-great grandparents after immigrating from Norway and transplanted to our home near Northfield.

Rhubarb – One pound equals about 3 cups. Wash, cut the ends off, cut off any bad parts damaged by wind, chop into 1/4 – 1/2 inch pieces. No need to peel. You can freeze it in a Ziploc bag (no blanching) and use for months to come. Check out earlier posts on rhubarb for recipe ideas. Also, a recent rhubarb favorite was shared this evening – make rhubarb sauce and eat it with your favorite yogurt.

Asparagus – Fresh cut asparagus from the Chute’s Farm Fresh Gardens in Aitkin, Minnesota. These farmers are friends of ours who we know from Farm Bureau and also the Minnesota Agriculture and Rural Leadership Program. They had some extra they wanted to share with us, and the delivery time worked out well. They snap the asparagus vs. cutting so that you are getting all edible stalk and should have very minimal amount that you do not eat. Enjoy! See how asparagus is harvested in California. Check out these recipes.

Black Seeded Simpson Lettuce – One of my favorite garden crops. 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. See how lettuce is grown throughout the year so it is available in our grocery stores even on our cold Minnesota days.

spinach

It is so fun to watch the crops that you plant sprout and grow. This is a young spinach plant. Do you know how long it takes for spinach to germinate? 7-14 days depending on growing conditions. You can cut and harvest several times. The plant will grow new leaves back every time you cut and harvest it.

Spinach – great for salads – check out this week’s recipe below.

Chives – wash then chop up chives into small pieces. I enjoy using them in potatoes on the grill. Here are a few ideas for using your chives. https://www.marthastewart.com/search/results?keys=chives

Cilantrodid you know that ¼ cup of cilantro only has 1 calorie. Here are a few ideas from Martha Stewart to use your cilantro.   https://www.marthastewart.com/search/results?keys=cilantro

Fresh cut arrangement – Hosta Leaves. I was so bummed that the peonies had already finished flowering.

Recipe of the Week

strawberry spinach salad (2)

Strawberry Spinach Salad

Strawberry Dressing

3 Tablespoons apple juice

2 Tablespoons strawberry spreadable fruit

2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Salad

1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts

8 cups bite-size pieces spinach

1 cup strawberries, stems removed and strawberries cut in half

1/4 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese (1 oz)

1/4 cup chopped walnuts

Directions

  1. In small bowl, mix all dressing ingredients until blended; set aside.
  2. Spray 10-inch skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium-high heat. Cook chicken in skillet 15 to 20 minutes, turning once, until juice of chicken is clear when center of thickest part is cut (170°F). Remove chicken to cutting board.
  3. Add dressing to skillet; stir to loosen any pan drippings.
  4. Cut chicken into slices. Among 4 plates, divide spinach. Top with chicken, strawberries and cheese. Drizzle with dressing. Sprinkle with walnuts.

Source: Taste of Home

 

Harvesting Begins

Harvesting Begins

The excitement of seeing the joys from the garden has begun. It is good to seeing our growing season is slightly in front of last year’s especially since we had a blizzard in the middle of April.

Garden Science

 

I asked Sam what our science message should be this week, and he said, “let’s show them how the Peony flower opens up.” It usually happens fairly quickly over a period of 1-3 days. They are beautiful and smell delightful. So here is Sam’s view from the camera lens on this science project.

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The beginning bloom of the Peony flower.

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The bloom beginning to open on the Peony.

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The Peony flower bloom open.

 

Pick-up and Delivery

Remember that pick-up and deliveries will be on the schedule you have arranged with Harner Brothers CSA – please note the exceptions to this which were in the email.

It is your responsibility to know that the pick-up or drop-off time will occur at the agreed upon time, and it is your responsibility as a shareholder to know this and be responsible for the produce at that time. If you are unable to utilize your share that week, it is still your responsibility: find someone else to pick it up or donate it to the food shelf.

Each box is labeled for each family. The same boxes will be used for your family throughout the season. Boxes and containers should be returned the following week. Bags will only be used once.

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.

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How large are rhubarb leaves? This big.

Rhubarb – One pound equals about 3 cups. Wash, cut the ends off, cut off any bad parts damaged by wind, chop into 1/4 – 1/2 inch pieces. No need to peel. You can freeze it in a Ziploc bag (no blanching) and use for months to come. Our family loves it in muffins, breads, jam, pie, crisp, sauce and torte. Check out earlier posts on rhubarb for recipe ideas.
Asparagus – Fresh cut asparagus from the Chute’s Farm Fresh Gardens in Aitkin, Minnesota. These farmers are friends of ours who we know from Farm Bureau and also the Minnesota Agriculture and Rural Leadership Program. They had some extra they wanted to share with us, and the delivery time worked out well. They snap the asparagus vs. cutting so that you are getting all edible stalk and should have very minimal amount that you do not eat. Enjoy! See how asparagus is harvested in California. Check out these recipes.

lettuce

Black Seeded Simpson Lettuce – love eating this in salads and on sandwiches.

Black Seeded Simpson Lettuce – One of my favorite garden crops. 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. See how lettuce is grown throughout the year so it is available in our grocery stores even on our cold Minnesota days.

Spinach and beet leaves – great for salads

Herbchives – wash then chop up chives into small pieces. I enjoy using them in potatoes on the grill.


Herbs pots – includes three of one of the following: thyme, rosemary, sweet basil, parsley, sage and a few surprises. Enjoy them in your kitchen.

20180606_211807.jpgFresh cut arrangement – Hosta Leaves and peonies

Recipe of the Week

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Rhubarb Jam – Enjoy!

Rhubarb Jam

Mix together and set aside until a juice forms

6 cups rhubarb sliced into 1/4 to 1/2 inch pieces

3 cups sugar

Next:

Add one can of pie filling (cherry, raspberry, blueberry, strawberry)

Cook these ingredients for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and add 1 package of 3 oz jello (use Jello that is of the same flavor as the pie filling). Mix well. Pour into containers. Refrigerate or freeze.

Accepting the Unknowns

Accepting the Unknowns

This week as we observed activities in the garden, it would have been easy to be overwhelmed by what was growing and not growing. One can be overwhelmed by the frustration of the challenges or can choose to look at the opportunity to overcome the obstacles. So we chose the opportunity.

We spent our time managing pests: weeds, potato bugs or seeds that simply didn’t grow. As I was visiting with my dad who has farmed for over 50 years, he told me that he too has seen seeds that simply didn’t grow or seeds that started to germinate and did not continue to grow.

Sometimes you just don’t understand why. Learning to accept things you cannot change and learning how to make lemonade out of lemons is an important life lesson.

Check out the state climatologists blog to learn more about June’s crazy weather.

Garden Science

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The 20 to 40 mile per hour winds along with the extreme heat of over 90 degrees on Saturday really beat on the plants. The rhubarb looked beautiful before Saturday’s weather.

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We staked the tomatoes to provide support for the plants as they grow. We are trying a few of the tomatoes in cages and the remainder with stakes only. This will be one of our science experiments this year to see which production method produces the healthiest looking plants and the most bountiful harvest in our production method.

Pick-up and Delivery

Remember that pick-up and deliveries will be on the schedule you have arranged with Harner Brothers CSA – please note the exceptions to this which were in the email.

It is your responsibility to know that the pick-up or drop-off time will occur at the agreed upon time, and it is your responsibility as a shareholder to know this and be responsible for the produce at that time. If you are unable to utilize your share that week, it is still your responsibility: find someone else to pick it up or donate it to the food shelf.

Each box is labeled for each family. The same boxes will be used for your family throughout the season. Boxes and containers should be returned the following week. Bags will only be used once.

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.

rhubarb

The Harner Bros are the 5th generation to raise this rhubarb originally planted on our family farm and transplanted to this location. This was a photo taken in April when this crop started growing for the season.

Rhubarb – One pound equals about 3 cups. Wash, cut the ends off, cut off any bad parts damaged by wind, chop into 1/4 – 1/2 inch pieces. No need to peel. You can freeze it in a Ziploc bag (no blanching) and use for months to come. Our family loves it in muffins, breads, jam, pie, crisp, sauce and torte. Check out earlier posts on rhubarb for recipe ideas.

Asparagus – Fresh cut asparagus from the Chute’s Farm Fresh Gardens in Aitkin, Minnesota. These farmers are friends of ours who we know from Farm Bureau and also the Minnesota Agriculture and Rural Leadership Program. They had some extra they wanted to share with us, and the delivery time worked out well. They snap the asparagus vs. cutting so that you are getting all edible stalk and should have very minimal amount that you do not eat.  Enjoy! See how asparagus is harvested in California. Check out these recipes.

lettuce

Black Seeded Simpson Lettuce – love eating this in salads and on sandwiches.

Black Seeded Simpson Lettuce – One of my favorite garden crops. 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. See how lettuce is grown throughout the year so it is available in our grocery stores even on our cold Minnesota days.

Radish – Cherry Belle radishes – check out these recipes.

Herb – chives – wash then chop up chives into small pieces. I enjoy using them in potatoes on the grill.

Herbs pots – includes three of one of the following: thyme, rosemary, sweet basil, parsley, sage and a few surprises. Enjoy them in your kitchen.

Fresh cut arrangement – Hosta Leaves and Spirea

hostas

Hostas, spirea and herbs to start out the year.

 

Recipe of the Week

Rhubarb Jam

Mix together and set aside until a juice forms

6 cups rhubarb sliced into 1/4 to 1/2 inch pieces

3 cups sugar

Next:

Add one can of pie filling (cherry, raspberry, blueberry, strawberry)

Cook these ingredients for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and add 1 package of 3 oz jello (use Jello that is of the same flavor as the pie filling). Mix well. Pour into containers. Refrigerate or freeze.

rhubarb jam

Rhubarb jam – I make strawberry rhubarb, blueberry rhubarb, cherry rhubarb and raspberry rhubarb. Enjoy, it is a delicious treat!

 

Life Lessons: Work Ethic and Storms

Life Lessons: Work Ethic and Storms

This weekend, we were yet again trying to get the weeds under control. After finishing the weeding, the boys mentioned that, “It really did look a lot better. Really it did.”

Yet another life lesson learned. There will be moments in life that will look quite challenging, overwhelming and nearly impossible (trust me – it really did look that bad). The attitude you bring into the situation will determine the outcome (an I can do attitude is a must!) At the end of the road, you will look back and realize that 1) It was achievable; 2) It wasn’t quite as bad as you thought it would be (a little water fun on a hot summer day is always a great thing.); and 3) Your efforts were worth it.

Garden Science

We did receive heavy winds on Monday that laid our corn pretty flat. After all of our hard work of weeding, to see our crops looking that way is disheartening and concerning.

But as we looked at the crops, we discussed plant genetics and that there are scientists, plant breeders, who study the plants and look for natural qualities/traits that will help the plant to survive these challenging weather conditions: heavy winds, hail, droughts and very wet conditions while producing a quality crop – that is healthy to eat and produces good yields (quantity of crop).

In the end, the boys optimistic attitude won the conversation.

“Don’t worry mom. All we need is a 70 miles per hour wind from the opposite direction, and the crop will stand right back up.” Always love a child’s perspective!

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.

Asparagus – This is the last week for fresh-cut asparagus from the Chute’s Farm Fresh Gardens in Aitkin, Minnesota. These farmers are friends of ours who we know from Farm Bureau and also the Minnesota Agriculture and Rural Leadership Program.

Black Seeded Simpson Lettuce – 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 wash your vegetables before eating.

Red Oak Leaf Lettuce – Beautiful red lettuce leaf. It adds such a wonderful color to your salads.

Spinach – Remember to wash before eating. A combination of these vegetables will make such a wonderful meal! Check out some of Martha Stewart’s spinach recipes.

Beet Leaves – Great in your salads.

Picking peas isn't the most enjoyable job, but it sure can reap a tasty reward for a job well done.

Picking peas isn’t the most enjoyable job, but it sure can reap a tasty reward for a job well done.

Sugar Snap Peas – A garden favorite. Eat the pod and all. Enjoy this delicious vegetable!

When harvesting Kale you simply snap the leaf off from the stem.

When harvesting Kale you simply snap the leaf off from the stem.

Kale – A new vegetable to our family. Some of you requested it so we are giving it a try. Let us know what you think!

Broccoli We love to eat this fresh out of the garden in a salad.

Broccoli

Broccoli

Fresh cut arrangement – Hosta leaves

Recipe of the Week

Since we had never tried Kale before, we tried Kale Chips. safe place to start everyone.

Kale Chips

I washed the kale and spun it draw in my lettuce spinner.

I washed the kale and spun it dry in my salad spinner.

Then I tore off the leaves of the kale leaving the rib of the leaf for the compost pile.

Then I tore off the leaves of the kale leaving the rib of the leaf for the compost pile.

I drizzled the olive oil and sprinkled the kosher salt on the leaves then tossed it together. Then spread it out evenly on the parchment paper lined cookie sheet.

I drizzled the olive oil and sprinkled the kosher salt on the leaves then tossed it together. Then spread it out evenly on the parchment paper lined cookie sheet.

Baked at 350 for 10-12 minutes. We were impressed with how crunchy they were. We want to experiment with a few other ways to make the chips like with honey.

Baked at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10-12 minutes. We were impressed with how crunchy they were. We want to experiment with a few other ways to make the chips like with honey.

Kale Chips

1 large bunch of kale, rinsed well, dried and torn into 2 inch pieces

1 -2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon coarse salt (I tried some with Kosher salt and seasoning salt)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

Place Kale pieces in a single even layer on baking sheets; drizzle with olive oil and salt.

Bake in oven for about 12 minutes. Serve.

Weeds, Weeds, Weeds

Weeds, Weeds, Weeds

Another motivation for weeding is finding fresh carrots.

Another motivation for weeding is finding fresh carrots.

While the weather has been beautiful, it has proven to be a haven for ideal weed growth. We spent a considerable amount of time this week weeding in the garden, and we are only half done! A combination of methods are used from hand weeding to tilling to rid these pesky plants from hindering a productive crop of garden produce. I always feel this is the most challenging time for weeds as there is no natural “canopy” from the garden crops formed over the weeds to shade out their growth.

What keeps us motivated to finish the weeding? Well, the radio always helps, along with, good conversation and a few games of “would you rather” or the stop everything and play “pretend.”

But to be honest, the feeling of looking back on your work and being able to say to yourself, “job well done” and also knowing that the plants will be healthier and more productive throughout the growing season, makes it all worth it.

At the end of the day, the bond from accomplishing the job together is pretty important!

At the end of the day, the bond from accomplishing the job together is pretty important!

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.

Rhubarb – One pound equals about 3 cups. Wash, cut the ends off, cut off any bad parts damaged by wind, chop into 1/4 – 1/2 inch pieces. No need to peel You can freeze it in a Ziploc bag (no blanching) and use for months to come. Our family loves it in muffins, breads, jam, pie, crisp, sauce and torte.

Asparagus – Fresh cut asparagus from the Chute’s Farm Fresh Gardens in Aitkin, Minnesota. These farmers are friends of ours who we know from Farm Bureau and also the Minnesota Agriculture and Rural Leadership Program. They had some extra they wanted to share.

Black Seeded Simpson Lettuce – One of my favorite garden crops. 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. See how lettuce is grown throughout the year so it is available in our grocery stores even on our cold Minnesota days.

Red Oak Leaf Lettuce – I love this beautiful red lettuce leaf. It adds such a wonderful color to your salads.

Spinach – Remember to wash before eating. A combination of these vegetables will make such a wonderful meal! Check out some of Martha Stewart’s spinach recipes.

Radishes – Wash, cut off the tops and also the bottoms, slice and enjoy in salads. Some enjoy dipping in salt.

Herb – Chives – wash then chop up chives into small pieces or wash and freeze in a Ziploc bag. When they are taken out of the freezer you could crush them at that time into tiny pieces to use as flavoring in dishes.

Fresh cut arrangement – Hosta leaves. I learned this a long time ago from Martha Stewart to cut a few hosta leaves and bring the “outside in.” I think it is a great way to brighten up your house, and they should last several weeks!

Rhubarb Torte

This is a family favorite. The recipe was given to me by a dear friend, a dairy farmer from Wisconsin. I love the recipes shared with friends and family as they always bring good memories to mind as you share the delicious dish with others.

The first step is to wash the rhubarb, cut off the ends and any scarred areas on the stock (from wind or hail) and cut into 1/4 to 1/2 inch pieces.

The first step is to wash the rhubarb, cut off the ends and any scarred areas on the stock (from wind or hail) and cut into 1/4 to 1/2 inch pieces.

Using a pie crust cutter. Mix the following: 2 cups flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, 2 teaspoons salt, 2 Tablespoons milk, and 1/2 cup butter. Mix then pat into a 9 x 13 cake pan.

Using a pie crust cutter. Mix the following: 2 cups flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, 2 teaspoons salt, 2 Tablespoons milk, and 1/2 cup butter.
Mix then pat into a 9 x 13 cake pan.

6 cups rhubarb cut into small 1/2 inch pieces. Place cut rhubarb on top of the bottom layer. Then sprinkle 6 oz package of Jello powder (strawberry or cherry) over rhubarb.

6 cups rhubarb cut into small 1/2 inch pieces. Place cut rhubarb on top of the bottom layer. Then sprinkle 6 oz package of Jello powder (strawberry or cherry) over rhubarb.

Mix with pie cutter. Topping: 2 cups sugar, 1 cup flour, 1/2 cup butter. Then spread on top of Jello.

Mix with pie cutter. Topping: 2 cups sugar, 1 cup flour, 1/2 cup butter. Then spread on top of Jello.

Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 minutes.

Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 minutes.

Enjoy with ice cream or whipped topping.

Enjoy with ice cream or whipped topping.

Rhubarb Torte

Using a pie crust cutter. Mix the following.

2 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons salt

2 Tablespoons milk

1/2 cup butter

Mix then pat into a 9 x 13 cake pan.

6 cups rhubarb cut into small 1/2 inch pieces

6 oz package of strawberry or raspberry jello.

Place cut rhubarb on top of the bottom layer. Rhubarb should be cut into 1/2 inch pieces. Sprinkle jello powder over rhubarb.

Topping

2 cups sugar

1 cup flour

1/2 cup butter

Mix with pie cutter or fork and spread on top of Jello. Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 minutes.

What a beautiful sunset, we had the other night after a hard days work. God has a way of bringing peacefulness to the day and even better when it is captured through the lens by a young boy.

What a beautiful sunset, we had the other night after a hard days work. God has a way of bringing peacefulness to the day and even better when it is captured through the lens by a young boy.

And So It Begins

And So It Begins

Welcome to all of our shareholders. We appreciate the opportunity to work with you and for you through out the growing season. We work hard to earn your trust and respect in the food that we grow for your families and ours! All of you should have received an email with more details of dates and specifics with the CSA. We are excited to see the daily changes and growth in the garden. Look for weekly blog posts for guidance throughout the season which will provide you with updates, ideas for your box of produce and recipes.

Did you know - that the young cucumber plants when they are cotyledons smell like a cucumber? We found that out as we were thinning the row. So we had a better plant population (plants properly spaced for optimal growth and production).

Did you know – that the young cucumber plants when they are cotyledons smell like a cucumber? We found that out as we were thinning the row. We thin the row so we have a plants properly spaced for optimal growth and production.

The potatoes have enjoyed the weather and were already in need of being hilled. Hilling helps the potato growth to occur under ground vs. above ground. We feel we have a more plentiful harvest when this is done. You will see the boys busy fertilizing the peas in the foreground.

The potatoes have enjoyed the weather and were already in need of being hilled. Hilling helps the potato growth to occur under ground vs. above ground (thus the greening of the potato). We feel we have a more plentiful harvest when this is done. You will see the boys busy fertilizing the peas in the foreground.

Pick-up and Delivery

Remember that pick-up and deliveries will be on the schedule you have arranged with Harner Brothers CSA with harvest on Wednesday evenings – please note the exceptions to this which were in the email.

It is your responsibility to know that the pick-up or drop-off time will occur at the agreed upon time, and it is your responsibility as a shareholder to know this and be responsible for the produce at that time. If you are unable to utilize your share that week, it is still your responsibility: find someone else to pick it up or donate it to the food shelf.

Each box is labeled for each family. The same boxes will be used for your family throughout the season. Boxes and containers should be returned the following week. Bags will only be used once.  

Garden Science

Potato bugs have reappeared. So we are again spending family bonding time picking the bugs and the eggs off of the potatoes and tomato plants.

Potato bugs have reappeared. So we are again spending family bonding time picking the bugs and the eggs off of the potatoes and tomato plants.

A lot has been done in the garden this past week including weeding, insect control and planting another crop of snap peas, green beans, beets, lettuces and spinach. Our biggest challenge this week are potato bugs!

We have done a lot of research over the last few years and will keep you posted as we work through this. This year we have again planted dill and marigolds around the potatoes with the hope that these plants would draw in beneficial insects to eat the potato bugs and the potato bug larvae. In addition, we have planted some 4’oclocks and wildflowers to also help bring in beneficial insects.

To say we were disappointed that the potato bugs found their way to the new field and have started eating tomato plants in addition to the potato plants is a gross understatement. Every night, we are out there picking potato bugs and their eggs off of the potato plants. What is even more frustrating is how they eat the potato plants as they emerge from the ground, and before the potato plants emerged, the potato bugs were eating the tomato plants.

 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.

The Harner Bros are the 5th generation to raise this rhubarb originally planted on our family farm and transplanted to this location.

The Harner Bros are the 5th generation to raise this rhubarb originally planted on our family farm and transplanted to this location.

Rhubarb – One pound equals about 3 cups. Wash, cut the ends off, cut off any bad parts damaged by wind, chop into 1/4 – 1/2 inch pieces. No need to peel You can freeze it in a Ziploc bag (no blanching) and use for months to come. Our family loves it in muffins, breads, jam, pie, crisp, sauce and torte. Check out earlier posts on rhubarb for recipe ideas.

Asparagus – Fresh cut asparagus from the Chute’s Farm Fresh Gardens in Aitkin, Minnesota. These farmers are friends of ours who we know from Farm Bureau and also the Minnesota Agriculture and Rural Leadership Program. They had some extra they wanted to share with us, and the delivery time worked out well. Enjoy! See how asparagus is harvested in California.

Black Seeded Simpson Lettuce – One of my favorite garden crops.  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. See how lettuce is grown throughout the year so it is available in our grocery stores even on our cold Minnesota days.

Red Oak Leaf Lettuce – I love this beautiful red lettuce leaf. It adds such a wonderful color to your salads.

Spinach – remember to wash before eating. A combination of these vegetables will make such a wonderful meal! Check out some of Martha Stewart’s spinach recipes.

Beet/Beet Leaves – Many times I have seen in high-end restaurants beet leaves in my salads. Well here is your opportunity. These are young plants that we are thinning out of the rows – eat the whole plant. It will add color and nutrition to your salads. Learn more here.

Now that's a radish. Our French Radish and Cherry Belle radishes are plentiful. This one was as big as Sam's hand.

Now that’s a radish. Our French Radish and Cherry Belle radishes are plentiful. This one was as big as Sam’s hand.

Radishes – wash, cut off the tops and also the bottoms, slice and enjoy in salads. Some enjoy dipping in salt.

Herb chives – wash then chop up chives into small pieces. I enjoy using them in

Fresh cut arrangement – herbs pots – includes three of one of the following: silver thyme, rosemary, sweet basil, parsley and/or purple basil.

Recipe of the Week

Rhubarb Juice

Rhubarb Juice

Rhubarb Juice

Thank you to my friends at Feltis Farms CSA for sharing this delicious recipe.

8 lbs. diced rhubarb
2 gallons water
2 12 oz. cans frozen orange juice concentrate
2 46 oz. cans pineapple juice
2 3 oz. boxes strawberry gelatin
4 cups sugar

In LARGE pot combine water and rhubarb. Cook down until rhubarb is soft. Drain. Discard rhubarb. Add sugar. Stir until dissolved. Add remaining ingredients.

Enjoy immediately.

Or cook in for 10 minutes at 5 lbs. pressure in canner to enjoy this winter.