Backyard Gardens CSA: Week 15 – September 13, 2017

Hey there, CSA members! Before I dig into the dirt from the field, I have a big announcement: We Dig You, CSA Members! That’s both the honest-to-goodness truth and the name of an CSA member appreciation event we’ll be holding on the farm, just for you, on Sunday, September 24th! Grab your gardening gloves, short and a t-shirt, a rain slicker, or maybe even a wool sweater (who knows this time of year!) and come on up to the farm to celebrate our partnership in bringing community-supported agriculture to our little corner of Oregon. Tour the farm, meet the staff, and help us bring in the harvest with some potato digging and winter squash harvesting fun at 10 am. Afterwards, we’ll all join together for a potluck lunch. Bring the whole family, but please no pets. Personally, I can’t wait to meet each and every one of you, and celebrate!

DIRT FROM THE FIELD:

The summer heat has finally broken, and with night-time temperatures forecasted to brush freezing in the next few days, it’s time to harvest our most cold-sensitive crops. This morning, the all-star team of ladies (minus Garik) returned to pull all the basil from the small hoophouses. Lindsey, Aeriel, and Jenny took on the sweaty, smelly work with big smiles.

“Taking time to smell the basil.” Lindsey and Jenny ham it up with their morning pickings.

A good portion of the basil made it into your bins in one of three produce bags you’ll find in there today. Another holds hot peppers, not to be confused with the sweet peppers that are loose in the bin. Finally, instead of the usual head of lettuce, you’ll find a whole pound of cut lettuce from one of our new beds that is growing faster than we can harvest it for our classic BYG salad mix. We’re just saving you time cutting off the base of the lettuce head, right? Grab a handful, give it a couple more big cuts, and use it as the base for a salad. We’re also delighted to share the first real harvests of beans and carrots of the season- they’re just gorgeous.

The beautiful carrot varieties that Beth chose to grow this year, including YaYa (orange) and Purple Haze.

 

For those of you around this weekend, look forward to seeing our very own Beth Gibans at the Farmer’s Market, where she will be running the BYG booth and maybe even slinging some tasty new homemade pesto she plans to make out of all that basil!


THIS WEEK’S SHARE:

Full Share:

1 lb Loose Lettuce
1 Cabbage
1 Stuffing Squash
2 lbs Tomatoes
1/4 lb Sweet Peppers
1/4 lb Hot Peppers
1/2 lb Beans
1 Bunch Carrots
1 Bunch Cilantro
1/4 lb Basil
1 Sweet Onion
1 Garlic Bulb

 

Half Share:

1 lb Loose Lettuce
1 Cabbage
1 1/2 lbs Squash
1 lbs Tomatoes
1/2 lb Cherry Tomatoes
1/4 lb Sweet Peppers
1/4 lb Hot Peppers
1/2 lb Beans
1 Bunch Carrots
1/4 lb Basil
1 Sweet Onion
1 Garlic Bulb

 


FEATURED ITEM:

With temperatures falling and rain in the forecast, this Midwesterner thinks it’s high time for something cheesy and delicious! Cabbage is the featured item this week, and this recipe is from Lynne’s Forage blog. Check out this post for lots of ideas for using green cabbage and Savoy cabbage with recipe links.

Print

Caramelized Cabbage Gratin


Ingredients

  • 1 medium green cabbage or Savoy cabbage 2-3 pounds
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons sea salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, divided
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon caraway optional
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 1 large bay leaf
  • 6 ounces (1 1/2 cups) grated Gruyère Emmanthaler or other good-quality Swiss cheese

Instructions

  1. Stand the cabbage on its stem end and cut it into slabs 1 to 1 1/2-inches thick. Lay the slices flat and cut them in half and then cut a V-shape into the thickest part of the core while leaving the leaves intact. (Set aside the rounded ends or slice them as finely as you can and store for slaw, salad or fish tacos.) Season the slices generously with 1 1/2 teaspoons of the salt and all but about 1/8 teaspoon of the pepper.

  2. Heat the oil in your largest sauté pan over medium-high heat. Working in batches, cook the cabbage slices until they are nicely browned, 4-5 minutes per side, turning them with a spatula and keeping the slices intact as best you can. Transfer the cooked cabbage slices to a 2- or 3-quart casserole dish (a 9 x 13 baking dish is 3 quarts) and repeat cooking the remaining slices.
  3. Meanwhile, whisk the cream with the mustard, caraway, if using, the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon black pepper. Preheat the oven to 475°F.
  4. When all the cabbage is cooked, cram it into the casserole dish in a single layer, including any stray strips that came off while cooking it. Tuck in the garlic and the bay leaf. Pour the cream over the cabbage and press it down with a spatula so this it is in an even layer. Sprinkle on the cheese to create a nearly solid layer on top. (The gratin can be prepared up to 2 days in advance and refrigerated up to this point.)

  5. Bake the gratin until it is bubbling and well browned on top, 25 to 30 minutes. For the most even browning, rotate the casserole dish during the last 10 minutes of baking.

More CSA box ideas for this week from Cook with What You Have:

Butter Braised Carrots

New Potatoes, Green Beans and Pesto

Roasted Salsa

Cheers,

Caitlin