CSA Week 13 8/20

This Week’s HarvestIMG_3175

Purple Potatoes

Kale

Red Bell Peppers

Salad Mix

Wax Beans

Zephyr Squash

Sweet Onions

Watermelon

Cucumbers (regular and Salt and Pepper)

Tomatoes (Beefsteak and Heirlooms)

Okra (Tuesday only. Thursday got it 8/2 and 8/9)

Farm News

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The state of the farm these days is mostly good! Most crops are growing really well and the team is working really hard. We’ve seeded fall carrots, herbs, beets, turnips, and radishes. We’ve planted all 3 rounds of fall brassicas as well as greens. We weeded and side dressed these crops with fertilizer. We’ve harvested 9 bulk bins of winter squash! Fields from the spring have been disced under and seeded to cover crop. Beautiful stands of cover crop pepper the farm and roadways and field edges have been mowed. It’s in really good shape!

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All the thriving crops make the bad news from the farm a little easier to take. Disease is starting to creep up on the farm from the hot, humid and wet conditions we’ve had recently. The saddest thing to report is that our basil is done! Downy mildew has hit the farm–a disease that has afflicted basil growers for a couple years now, including us. But this year it has come so early! I intended to pick a brand new never-been-touched planting for the box this week but the mildew just over took it all this weekend. This, despite planting a supposed Downing Mildew resistant variety. Moreover, we didn’t even plant our last round of basil because the disease was already on the tiny seedlings. I really haven’t had my fill of caprese or panzanella salad yet!! Oh well, we’ll just have to get full on everything else the farm is producing!

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Recipes

Cucumber and Kale Salad with Lemon Tahini Dressing

Potato, Pepper, and Onion Hash

Green Bean, Cucumber, and Tomato Salad with Walnut Fresh Herb Dressing (use sweet onion in place of red onion and wax beans in place of green beans)

Coming Up Next Week (Our Best Guess….) Delicata Squash, Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Carrots, Potatoes, Dill, Dragon Tongue Beans, Red Onions

 

8/13 CSA Week 12

This Week’s Harvest

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Tomatoes (Beefsteak and Heirloom)

Italian Sweet Peppers

Garlic

Eggplant

Zephyr Squash

Beets

Yellow Wax Beans

Okra (Tuesday only. Thursday deliveries have already received it)

Poblaño Peppers

Salad Mix

Farm News

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On Sunday we lucked out and stayed dry while thunderstorms popped up all around us. Our winter squash had been showing signs last week that it’s ready to harvest and we slated Monday to start the process. Harvesting a 1/3 acre of crops is so much easier in dry conditions and better for the crops long term storage capability.  Because the rain missed us we had a very successful harvest of pie pumpkins, delicata, acorn, and kabocha squash. CSA members last year might remember we had a winter squash crop failure so this season’s harvest was especially exciting! We have 4 bins of 4 different squashes curing now in the barn and 6 beds of butternuts left to go.  Should be a yummy fall!

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Recipes

Roasted Eggplant and Red Pepper Sauce (use fresh peppers -yellow and red and even poblano- and roast along with eggplant)

Roasted Beet, Green Bean and Olive Salad  (Wax Beans will work great)

Summer Veggie Kabobs

Coming up next week (our best guess)…………… sweet onions, watermelon, carrots, tomatoes, zephyr squash, delicata squash, kale, and more!

 

 

 

8/6 CSA Week 11

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Green Beans

Celery

Tomatoes (Beefsteak, Sungold Cherry, and Heirloom)

Eggplant

Bell Peppers

Sweet Italian Peppers

Sweet Onions

Zucchini

Jalapeño peppers

Salt and Pepper Cucumber

Salad Mix

Farm News

Weeds are an organic farmer’s worst enemy. Over the years we’ve collected quite the arsenal of cultivating tools to combat the decades worth of weed seed bank that exist on the farm. We’ve got sweeps, knives, discs, tines, fingers, spiders– all different tools that attach to the tractors and work in specific ways. This year we’ve had good dry spells and been able to work between rains which results in clean fields, healthy crops and happy farmers and customers!

What follows are several videos of the various cultivating tools. It really helps to understand all that goes into weeding on an organic operation.

Our plastic edges need to be cultivated in a way that doesn’t rip the buried plastic up. The video above shows how this is done. The spiders cultivate and throw soil up on the plastic edges and the sweeps follow behind and uproot weeds in the pathways.

Click here for a video of us cultivating kale using finger weeders.

Click here for a video of us cultivating the tiniest of beet seedlings with discs.

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The Allis-Chalmers Model G pictured above is our main cultivating tractor. Its rear mounted engine and belly mounted implement bar give the driver a direct view of what’s happening. As you can see can see, you can still get in there when the plants are pretty big- setting back the weeds so that once we can’t cultivate anymore the plants are good to go on their own.  This picture from a few weeks ago is of Dan cultivating and hilling the corn that we are now harvesting and enjoying!

Recipes

Tomato, Sweet Onion and Celery Salad (This was recommended by a CSA member. You can use 1/2 and 1/2 instead of cream and it’s even good as leftovers!)

Sweet Corn Polenta with Eggplant Sauce

Green Beans and Potatoes in Chunky Tomato Sauce

Cheese Stuffed Peppers

Coming Up Next Week (our best guess….) carrots, beets, onions, melons, wax beans, eggplant, garlic, tomatoes

7/30 CSA Week 10

IMG_3021This Week’s Harvest

 

Sweet Corn

Sungold Cherry Tomatoes

Green Beans

Tomatoes

Red Onions

Salad Mix

Sweet Italian Peppers

Salt and Pepper Cucumbers

Mountain Rose and Nicola Potatoes

Basil

Okra (THURSDAY only. This crop will make the rounds to the various pick up points over the next few weeks)

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Farm News

We moved to Ohio on Feb. 7, 2007 to start Mile Creek Farm. The farm didn’t have a name yet, we didn’t even own a shovel, and I remember my mom helping out by bringing us homemade chili dinner and a gift of silverware so we could eat said dinner. That winter we ordered seeds, talked to market managers, and purchased some larger equipment to get us started. We also relied heavily on The Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA) for support as we set down roots in a new to us organic farming community.  Just a few weeks after we moved to Ohio we attended OEFFA’s Annual Ecological Farming Conference where we met and learned from fellow farmers and connected to consumers.

Fast forward 11 years and at this year’s OEFFA Conference, Ben was nominated and elected to serve on the Board of Trustees! After getting so much from OEFFA we are happy to give back to the organization in this way. Ben headed to Columbus this past weekend for a day long Board meeting- something he will do with some frequency for at least the next 3 years! OEFFA is a wonderful advocate for and support to the organic farming movement in Ohio. Check them out HERE for more information. Ben would also be happy to talk about OEFFA….but not until after the busy season!

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Recipes

Orzo Salad with corn, green beans and tomato

Sweet Corn and Basil Pizza

Crispy Potatoes with roasted red pepper sauce (instead of canned peppers, use 3 fresh peppers from the box and roast them the same time you roast the potatoes)

Coming Up Next Week (our best guess….) sweet corn, green beans, sweet onions, celery, tomatoes, potatoes, bell peppers, carrots and more

7/23 CSA Week 9

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Sweet Peppers

Globe Eggplant

Garlic

Red Onions

Salad Mix

Tomatoes (beefsteak, heirlooms and Sungold Cherry)

Tomatillos

Poblano Peppers

Beets

Fennel

Salt and Pepper Cucumbers (yellow in color)

Farm News

The recent rain was very welcome on the farm. First it forced us workaholic farmers out of the fields for some much needed rest.  Second we got to take a break from watering. Irrigating takes up a lot of Ben’s time and it’s hard to keep up with all the watering during hot dry spells. There is a lot of switching water lines around late at night and early in the morning in an effort to stay on top of it. Finally the crops always respond well to a good soak from mother nature.

The down side to rain is that harvest can be difficult in mucky conditions and sometimes completely interrupted. This week I was really looking forward to starting in on our potato harvest and include them in this week’s CSA share. But unfortunately it is too wet for us to dig them efficiently. Digging a bed after the rain could take all day and that’s all CSA members would get that week! So we’ll have to wait for the ground to continue to dry out- and as soon as it does hopefully we’ll be in a position to get the harvest started! Turns out we are ending up with a really full exciting box that doesn’t really need the potatoes to shine after all. IMG_2884

Recipes

Eggplant fries with Greek Tzatziki dipping sauce

Caramelized Fennel and Beet Tart

Poblano Posole

Mooshi’s Cooked Eggplant and Pepper Salad (recommended by a CSA member)

Coming Up Next Week (our best guess….) sweet peppers, green beans, red onions, potatoes, celery, tomatoes, sweet corn, zucchini, cucumbers

 

Poblano Peppers

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Poblano Peppers are a mild hot pepper. They are picked green and larger than a jalapeño but smaller than a bell pepper. They are most commonly know as the pepper in Chile Rellenos (stuffed peppers with cheese filling and egg batter) They are also used in mole sauces. While considered a milder pepper they can still be hot. Scoop out the seeds and ribbing if you do not like spicy food.

Sweet Italian Peppers

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Corno di Toro peppers are long tapered Italian sweet roasting peppers. We grow two organic varieties developed by Johnny’s seeds. The ripe yellow ones are Escamillo and the red are Carmen. They are so sweet. We love the flavor and use them any number of ways–raw, stuffed, roasted, grilled, sautéed. You name it and it can be done with these peppers.