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Weekly Farm Newsletter

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Week 1 of 2017 Deliveries: April 17

Welcome to our 2017 CSA season! We are excited to be kicking off our 24th year of doing Community Supported Agriculture memberships in central PA.

Tentative CSA menu:

Baby Spinach
Store in the fridge
Spring Onions
Wrap in a grocery bag and store in the veg drawer in the fridge
Sweet Potatoes
Store at room temperature
Collard Greens
Store in a sealed bag in the fridge
Kale Raab
Store in a sealed bag in the fridge
Yellow Onions
Store in the fridge
Gold Potatoes
Eat ASAP store in a cool dark place
Bunched Spinach
Store in a sealed bag in the fridge
Winter Squash
Store at room temperature

What you need/want to know from us as your farmers:
-All produce you receive in your CSA shares throughout the season is grown and coming directly from the soil at our farm. We have been USDA certified organic since 1994. Each year, we go through multiple rigorous inspections to verify that the food we grow meets the qualifications of the USDA under PCO (Pennsylvania Certified Organic). Certified Organic ensures that the food you are eating has been grown from non-GMO seeds and without the use of pesticides, herbicides, or chemical fertilizers. Furthermore, we do not use any type of animal manure or fertilizers on our produce. We rely strictly on our own vermicomposting system right here on the farm from vegetable grade-outs that we accredit to playing a major role in the farm's fertility. The OMRI (Organic Methods and Research Institute) does have organically approved biological sprays that can be used if under "insect pressure" but we work hard to use other preventative methods to deal with pests and disease in a way that does not affect our beloved ecosystem that the food is grown in!

-All produce is picked, packed, and shipped at peak ripeness, flavor, and nutritional content. Most things in your share are harvested the day before you receive them and is intended to last/store all week until your next CSA delivery. We are Food Safety certified as well as Harmonized GAP (Good Agricultural Practices) certified. We wash, grade, and chill all produce before it is packed to ensure that it will hold its freshness in your own kitchen
.

-We are a multi-generation farm that was started in 1978 with founding farmers, Mike and Terra, still heavily involved in the daily operation. My brother, Will, and I have now both returned home to Spiral Path, devoted to continuing the drive for sustainable agriculture here on our family farm. We proudly eat what we grow here! I was 8 years old during our first CSA season where we packed the boxes as a family and have grown up surrounded by vegetables and the tremendous support we have received from the community. It is now my job to make sure that you are beyond satisfied as a supporting CSA customer. Although we take great care in packing and handling your produce, "compost happens." Please do not hesitate to contact us if you are ever unsatisfied with any item in your weekly share so that we can quickly address and send you replacement items.

- LUCAS Brownback

Crop Notes
Our Gold Potatoes are coming out of winter storage and need to be eaten asap! Please disregard their looks and enjoy. No matter how precisely we store them, a living potato wants to sprout and regrow as it is the season for seeding potatoes.
Kale Raab is a wintered delicacy that has been growing since last fall. The flavor and flowerets on top are comparable to broccolini / broccoli raab. Kale is a tough plant that can survive through the winter and becomes sweeter with cold weather. Yum!
The Sweet Potatoes are also coming out of winter storage. These guys are huge and hardy and can be cut open and then used months later. If you see a bad part- simply cut it off and use what is remaining. The fresh orange flesh will create a natural scab/coverage.
Spring Onions are fresh out of the ground and are full of flavor. You can use the entire bulb and green stem and they are preferred raw in most recipes. Unharvested spring onions will eventually grow into large sweet white onions that we will have in late June-July.

Italian Soup with Collards
1 pound ground sausage ¼ cup olive oil
2-1/2 C Carrots, sliced 2 qt. Water
2 C onion, chopped 2 qt. Whole tomatoes, chopped or whipped to puree
4 garlic cloves, sliced 1 cups Orzo or Acini de pepe pasta, uncooked
1 bunch Collards -- slice & chop into small shreds 2 cups of cut Sweet Potatoes
2 tsp salt ½ tsp pepper
1 T Italian herb seasoning
In large heavy soup pot, brown the sausage & olive oil on med heat. When just about browned add the carrots, onions, garlic, collards, and sweet potatoes. Continue to stir often over medium heat for 15 more minutes. Add the water, tomatoes, and all seasonings. Bring to a simmer. Add uncooked orzo pasta, simmer for 15 minutes.
Allow to cool & serve the next day for very best flavor.

Kale Raab (florets) & Pasta
1 pound pasta (chunky ones will match up better with the rabe)
1 pound kale raab, heavy stems removed, remaining stems and leaves cut into 1- to 2-inch sections
1/2 cup olive oil
5 garlic cloves, peeled and minced or pressed
1/2 teaspoon pepper
About 1 heaping teaspoon salt
Grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
Bring a huge pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and five minutes before its cooking time is up, add the kale raab. It will seem like too much for the water, but with a stir or two, the raab should wilt and cook alongside the pasta. Drain raab and pasta together and pour into serving bowl. In the same pot or a tiny one, heat the olive oil with the garlic, pepper flakes and Kosher salt over moderate heat, stirring frequently for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the garlic becomes lightly golden. Pour mixture over pasta and toss to evenly coat. Shower with freshly grated cheese and eat at once.

Spinach Salad
2 Boiled Eggs
1 c. sliced, fresh mushrooms
½ c. chopped spring onions
½ c. sliced radishes
Tomato wedges
5 Bacon Strips
Oil and vinegar dressing
Wash and stem spinach. Clean all other vegetables and prepare for salad. Fry bacon and crumble. Toss all ingredients in salad bowl, except eggs and tomatoes. Slice eggs and wedge tomatoes, place on the salad. Top with oil and vinegar dressing as desired.

Butternut Squash Casserole
1 pkg. couscous
1 butternut squash, peeled and cut into cubes
Butter, brown sugar
Cinnamon, nutmeg
Parmesan cheese, shredded
Cook the couscous using the directions on the package. Line the bottom of a greased 9 x 12 casserole with the couscous. Boil the squash in water until soft. Drain. Mash the squash. Mix in butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg to taste. Pour on top of couscous. Sprinkle the top with parmesan cheese. Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes.

Lemon Raab
Ingredients:
Water, salt, 1 bunch kale raab chopped, 1-1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil , 1 clove minced garlic, Pinch red pepper flakes , 1/4 cup grated fresh Parmesan , 1 zested lemon, sea salt, ground black pepper
Directions:
In a large sauce pot, bring 1 gallon of salted water to a boil. Add the raab and blanch for 1 minute. Drain. Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil, garlic and red pepper flakes. Allow garlic to brown. Add raab to skillet with toasted garlic. Toss to combine. Toss in Parmesan and lemon zest. Season with salt and pepper. Cook over medium-high heat for 2 to 3 minutes.

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