Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Week 9- Produce Box

The weather is a little cooler this week and much better for garden work. Summer is in full swing and we are spending about 2-3 hours daily in the garden. The kids decided not to grow sweet corn on their own this year but instead have partnered with Raymond, our farm manager who is growing it organically and has much more experience than they do. The kids have harvested the first of the corn this week. We haven't cooked any yet but will tonight. Apparently there is a raccoon that thinks it is good as it has been helping to harvest the corn during the night. The first of the cantaloupes is ready this week. Watermelons will probably be ready next week. Hardy, Alena and Jeffrey are still digging potatoes. John has tilled up their spring garden and they are planting the next round of beans and veggies.

Your box this week includes: red potatoes, yellow squash, large zucchini, blueberries, cantaloupe, collards, bell pepper, heirloom tomatoes, green beans, wax beans, corn, eggplant, red cabbage and dill.

Heirloom tomatoes and slicing tomatoes are just coming in. If you receive tomatoes that are not yet ripe enough to eat, simply put them into a paper bag and close it. They should finish ripening in a day or two. Heirlooms are very fragile and so we don't always wait until they are completely ripe to harvest as they tear easily and won't keep as well. Some of the Heirloom varieties are Mountain Spring, Mortgage Lifter, German Johnson, Sweet 100 (current), Mr. Wyche's Yellow. The Cherokee Purple aren't really ready yet.

The Ping Tung and Japanese eggplant that you are getting in your box this week are mild in flavor. Perfect for stir frys, and baba ghanoush. The wax beans string beans are great saute'ed together with the green beans or in a bean salad.

Here is a recipe for Callaloo, a traditional Caribbean dish using collard-type greens. I haven't tried it yet, but think that I will this weekend.
Also, here is a recipe for fried collards. I would maybe add some Essence of Emeril spice mix to it while cooking. They would go well with catfish and some Hoppin' John.

The zucchini that you are getting this week are big. I know that you might be getting sick of zucchini by now but they will be in your box a lot this summer. With these big zucchini you can stuff them or if you are sick of eating zucchini, I would just wash, don't peel, grate them and store about 1 or 2 cups in a freezer bag. They will be perfect for zucchini bread this fall and winter when the nuts are harvested. Kids always love zucchini bread.

Hope you are enjoying summer. We are.
The Rainbow Meadow Farms family

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Week 8 Produce CSA Box

Well, we were hoping for a little rain but Wow! this is a lot. We had about 4 inches of rain this morning. There is a lot of work that needs to be done in the garden but some of it is going to have to wait until it dries out. Work schedule this week is to plant another round of green beans, as well as some heirloom beans and some more field peas and onions. We managed to get all the garden pea vines torn out and are just waiting to get the tiller in the garden to get those rows ready to plant. The kids worked hard weeding one garden last week and they are working on the cleaning out another for the next few days. We will have the first of the slicing tomatoes probably next week as well as more variety of eggplant. Corn will be ready soon. Watermelon are just about ready. Summer is in full swing.

Your box this week includes: Swiss Chard and or Pointed Head Cabbage, Spring Onions, Green or Striped Zucchini, Yellow Squash, Yellow Patty Pan Squash (sweet), Green Beans, Cucumbers, Carrots, Bell Peppers, Mini Japanese Eggplant, Cherry Tomatoes.
We are short on recipes this week, but I think that you all know what to do with your veggies. Hopefully, we will get caught up on succession planting after tearing up one of our spring garden plots. Next week, we will try to get some good recipes out to you. We hope that you are enjoying the veggies as much as we are.
The Rainbow Meadow Farms family

Friday, June 12, 2009

Week 7 Produce Box

This week has flown like crazy. We are working in the garden most evenings until dark. We are also busy in the fields planting summer grazing for the cows, sheep, chickens and hogs. The grass is growing like crazy and with all the harvesting the kids haven't been able to keep up. The grass and weeds has gotten ahead of them. So, I got a couple of people to come and help them chop the garden rows so that they could better manage it. The kids and our farm manager, Raymond, have sweet corn. It should start being ready in a couple of weeks.

Here is what is included in your box this week: Carrots, New Potatoes, String Beans, Cherry Tomatoes, Yellow Squash, Zucchini or Striped Zucchini, Patty Pan Squash, Cucumbers, Blueberries, Rainbow Chard, Collards, Bok Choy, Daikon Radish and Spring Onions. You really have a box full of veggies.

You may have some large zucchini this week. They are perfect for stuffing. We like to make a wild rice blend, brown some hot Italian sausage and mix together, stuff the core of the zucchini, bake and then the last 5 minutes, top with Italian cheese blend. Or the large zucchini are perfect for making zucchini bread.

I didn't like collards fixed "Southern Style" when I was growing up. I knew that they were good for me, but I couldn't stand the smell of them boiling in the pot or the way they tasted. I have found two ways that I now like them and can enjoy all the vitamins and minerals that they have to give. I will share one of these with you.

Haak with Collard Greens (Kashmiri style)


2 bunches collard greens (1/2 pound chopped)

2 spring onions (white and green parts chopped)

(optional)2 green chillies, chopped fine

1 red dried chilli, broken

2 tbsps. oil (preferably mustard)

a pinch of dried ginger (sonth)

1/2 tsp. yellow mustard seeds

salt to taste


1. Clean the collards, remove the tough stems, and chop them.
2. Heat the mustard oil, add the mustard seeds, stir and add the green and red chillies, and the dried ginger.
3. After a few seconds, add the spring onions and stir. Then add the collard greens and salt, cook for 3 mintues or so until wilted, add 1/2 cup water, cover and cook for about 15 minutes on medium-low (or pressure cook for one whistle).
4. Sprinkle garam masala.Bold
Serve with Basmati rice.

I also like to add a dollop of Mango Chutney on top at the end.

For a somewhat healthy dessert, you can try cubing your Patty Pan Squash, saute them in butter, and sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon. Great if you saute pecans with it. Also, another great dessert is a blueberries and yogurt with ground flax seed and a little honey added. My kids love the blueberries and yogurt for breakfast.

The gardens look a mess right now as we are transitioning to summer veggies. Ripping out the garden pea rows and planting a second round of stringbeans there. As we are digging potatoes, we are re-planting the rows in squash or field peas, sweet corn or onions. The kids were excited to discover that they have watermelons on the vine. The watermelons are about 1/2 the size of a basketball. We hope that there will be watermelons ready just in time for Independence Day.

Hope you have a great week.

The Rainbow Meadow Farms Family

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Week 6 Produce CSA Box

Summer veggies are coming in! The kids are putting in at least 2-3 hours every day in the garden, harvesting, chopping weeds, etc. Thank you so much for your comments about how you're enjoying the kid's veggies.

Your box this week includes: New Potatoes, Yellow and Zucchini Squash, Spring Onions, assortment of Lettuces, Cucumbers, Garden Peas, Blueberries, Cherry Tomatoes and pointed head Cabbage.

This week is the about the last of the lettuces. There are a few Romaine left in the garden but not much. We also only have one more week at most of the garden peas left. Stringbeans should start coming off next week. Also, a few bell peppers. Patty Pan Squash will be coming off before long also.

We have a lot of Zucchini and yellow squash right now. If you want to purchase some extra to either make squash pickles, zucchini bread or for freezing/canning, let us know. After all CSA boxes are filled for the week, we are taking leftovers to the local soup kitchen.

The cherry tomatoes are so versatile. You can add them to your favorite meat/veggie kabob. Will go well with onion, and zucchini on a kabob. They also would be great in a salad with romaine lettuce, blue cheese and croutons. With it turning hot, they would go well with some of the other veggies (including garden peas) in a pasta salad.

Our family are definately meat eaters. However, in the summer we really crave fresh veggies and lots of the time we just come up with new salad variations to go as the side dish with our meat. We love salads with fruit in them also. Here is a recipe almost like I fix at home with blueberries. Really gets the baby to eating his salad greens.

Here is a great recipe that I wanted to share.

It is for Lamb Chops with a smashed new potatoes and peas.

Got to go and get ready for the Greenville Uptown Market from 5-8pm today. Hope to see some of you there.


The Rainbow Meadow Farms family