A Farm Halloween in 3 Acts: Winter CSA Delivery #1

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Halloween at the Farm

Act 1: Pinstripe Harvesting

Last week Douglas showed up to work in costume. A far cry from his normal brown work pants and boots with a beige work coat and knit hat.  He delivered to the Coops in this outfit, and then worked the afternoon helping harvest carrots and other root crops.  The whole crew, we got a big kick out of this. We are used to wearing thrift-store sweatshirts with weird sayings and pants whose knees are permanantly mud-stained. Douglas even wore black dress shoes.  Outside of our trade, this costume is less funny. So like a proud mother showing off pictures of her kids, I was busting out my cell phone all morning long at farmer’s market, showing other farmers this photograph. #bestfarmcostumeever

Act 2: Disguising Vegetables in the Kitchen

As we swing away from all things green and into true root season, remember to keep the spirit of Halloween alive by disguising vegetables. Picky kids and spouses alike with eat many more vegetables when they aren’t aware the vegetable is there.  Ideas?  Chop up your kale or beauty heart radish into tiny, tiny pieces and cook with ground beef or pork to make tacos. OR throw your mizuna into a blueberry/banana smoothie with a dash or concentrated orange juice. The oj masks the bitter, while the blueberries hide the green color. OR try making a simple bread or muffins using butternut squash. The squash brings moisture but is hard to identify once cooked in with flour and sugar. OR make a chowder that gets blended… once it’s blended in, it’s hard for fingers to pick it out.

Act 3: Costumed Onions

Full disclosure: The onions you receive in your box are in their own kind of disguise – we did not grow them. These large, yellow onions were in fact grown on an Amish farm in Pardeeville, WI.

Why? As many of you summer members know, we had LOTS of BIG rain events that led to increase disease and pest pressure, and difficult curing conditions that pretty much decimated our onion crop. We lost about 85% of the onions we planted to rot. Summer members received all the onions we had, and they received very few at that.

While the CSA model is about supporting a farm through all the ups and downs of the growing season, we just didn’t feel right about giving you zero onions – so important they are in cooking! So we contacted our colleague, David Parr, who specializes in connecting food organically grown in Wisconsin to Chicago markets (the business is called Parrfection Produce). He sold us some organically grown onions from an Amish farm in Pardeeville. This is only the 2nd time in our 12 year history that we have bought in a crop from a different farm. Hopefully it will be another 6 years before we have to do it again.

We sincerely hope you enjoy your first box of vegetables for the winter share!

Farmer Cassie

In the Box:

  • Acorn Squash, 2 count
  • Arugula, 1 bag
  • Beauty Heart Radish, 3 count
  • Brussels Sprouts, 1 lb.
  • Butternut Squash, 2-3 count
  • Carrots, 5 #
  • Garlic, 5 bulbs
  • Green Pepper, 1-2 count
  • Green Cabbage, 1 head
  • Kale, 1 bunch
  • Leeks, 3 count
  • Mizuna Mustard Greens, 1 bunch
  • Red Potatoes, 5#
  • Sweet Potatoes, 5#
  • Yellow Onions (bought in), 5#

Recipe Ideas

  1. Simple Potato Kale Soup
  2. Braised Lentils with Kohlrabi, Cabbage and Smoked Sausage
  3. Linguine with Arugula, Pine Nuts and Parmesan Cheese
  4. Butternut Squash Frittata with Fried Sage
  5. Spicy Kale and Coconut Stir-Fry
  6. Carrot Tahini Salad with Chickpeas
  7. Spicy Thai Peanut Sauce Over Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Rice
  8. Mashed Brussels with Parmesan and Cream
  9. Butternut Squash Chili with Ground Beef and Pepper

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2016: All REGS and EOs pick up