Tuesday, May 11, 2010

csa pickup buffet style

Last week was the Phoenix Farms Spring CSA Pickup Number One. We did it buffet style. Instead of containers prepared ahead of time, CSA members weighed their own sweet potatoes on the spot. Then they grabbed a loaf of bread, a dozen eggs and were direct as to which veggies to take and which to choose from. I thought it went very smoothly.

The idea is to make sure the CSA members are capable of running the pickup without any specific individual being there. This strategy will prove useful today as I cannot be at the pickup location at 4pm when it starts. However the pickup will still run today from 4pm to 6pm. Two CSA members will set up at 3:45. Other members will arrive and pick up their food with a little help from the volunteers. No Aaron needed.

The cooler temps have been good for the greens. As I mentioned in the subject line the collards, which started out as really small transplants, are finally ready for harvesting. So is the Swiss Chard and the Kohlrabi. The lettuce is holding on while the first two plantings of spinach are mostly done. The greens look great in the field.

Not much rain though this week so I got the first of the drip irrigation lines installed. They are running right now actually. Typically I tend to underestimate the amount of effort needed for tasks that are new to me so I was pleasantly surprised to find this one easier than I thought it would be.

Cabarrus County is creating a Food Policy Council that will,

"help to identify and strengthen the connections between economic development, food, health, natural resource protection and the agricultural community."

There is a call for citizens who would like to serve on the council. If you're interested you can get more information and an application by clicking this link.


The Elma C. Lomax Incubator Farm Park is participating in this year's Junior Charity League Garden Tour in Concord, NC. The tour is this Saturday, May 15th. You can get tickets and more information about the tour by clicking this link.


If you've never been to the Incubator Farm this would be a great opportunity to check us out. Marvin's Fresh Farmhouse Restaurant, will be there with great food to eat.

To give you an idea of what's in season right now I thought I share the offerings for the CSA for this week.

1 dozen eggs
1 loaf of bread
1 bag of bronze arrow lettuce
1 bunch of radishes
2 lbs of sweet potatoes
1 bunch of spring onions
2 of any of the following: Collards, Swiss Chard, Kohlrabi, Arugula, Mixed Greens, Red Amaranth, Beet Greens

I hope everyone has a great week.


Radish Dip Recipe

Radishes aren't just for salads. Their peppery bite makes them ideal partner for creamy dips, like this one. Serve this radish dip recipe with crackers, chips or fresh raw vegetables.


5-6 radishes, washed and trimmed
3 oz. cream cheese
3 cloves garlic2 Tbsp. apple juice
kosher salt and freshly-ground black pepper, to taste


Place radishes in the work bowl of a food processor
fitted with a metal blade. Add
remaining ingredients.
Puree until smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings.

Sweet Potato Fries


2 pounds sweet potatoes
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon onion powder


Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with a piece of aluminum foil and lightly grease.

Peel the sweet potatoes, and cut into French fry-sized sticks, about 1/3 by 4 inches. Place into a large bowl, and toss with the vegetable oil to coat. Place the Parmesan cheese, garlic salt, paprika, onion powder in a resealable plastic bag, and shake to mix. Place the oiled sweet potatoes into the bag, and shake until evenly coated with the spices. Spread out onto the prepared baking sheet.

Bake in preheated oven until the outside is crispy, and the inside is tender, about 20 minutes. Serve immediately.

Mess o' Greens


2 tablespoons olive oil
5 medium leeks, white and light-green parts only, cut into 1/4-inch rounds
2 cloves garlic, peeled
1 teaspoon crushed red-pepper flakes
1 smoked turkey wing (4 to 6 ounces), cut into 3-inch pieces
3 pounds greens, such as collard, mustard, turnip, and kale, washed thoroughly, trimmed, and torn into pieces
1/4 cup dry white wine
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Heat olive oil in a large stockpot or casserole over medium-high heat until hot, 2 to 3 minutes. Add leeks and garlic; stir to coat. Cook, stirring, until leeks are softened but not brown, about 3 minutes. Add red-pepper flakes, smoked turkey wing, and greens; if necessary add greens in several batches.

Add wine; cover. Steam greens, turning occasionally, 8 to 10 minutes. Uncover, add salt and pepper, and cook, tossing occasionally, 3 minutes more. Discard turkey and garlic, and serve.

Quick White Bean Stew with Swiss Chard and Tomatoes


2 lb Swiss Chard (any green will do), large stems discarded and cut crosswise into 2 inch strips
1/4 C EVOO
3 Garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
1 C Canned tomatoes, chopped
One 16 oz can drained cannellini beans, drained and rinsed


Bring pot of water to boil. Add greens and simmer over moderate heat until tender-approx 8 minutes. Drain and press out excess water
Heat oil. Add garlic and red pepper and cook until garlic is golden, 1 minute.
Add tomatoes and bring to boil. Add beans and simmer over moderate heat for 3 minutes. Add chard and simmer until flavors meld-approx 5 minutes. Season with salt and serve. (Food & Wine, Oct)

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