Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Week 7 Newsletter

Welcome to Week Seven

I'm still waiting for the cool down that the weather people keep talking about.  Here on the farm the weather continues to be hot.  Our harvest this week turned out to be a wet one with the veggies and the farmer all taking an outside bath.  Maybe we will get that cool off in September!

Looking at the calendar and I see July slipping away into August, with so much left to do.  As it is each year, no rest until week 22 in November, but alas the rewards for the effort are countless.

Just the ever increasing variety of harvest being passed along brings a smile to the face.  The first of tomatoes, peppers and eggplant went out this week.  Expect a lot more of these to follow.  Summer squash continues to thrive.  Our dinner last night of zucchini skillet cakes was awesome.  Thanks Farmer Joan for a wonderful meal.  I think tonight it's grilled eggplant creamed feta, a recipe borrowed from Nigel Slater's book "Tender.   A Cook and his Vegetable Patch".  Thanks Ellen for the wonderful cookbook.

Week One for the Back Mountain Market was a huge success!  So nice to see all the familiar faces.  A special thank you to Serena, our new Sales and Marketing Intern.  Look for her behind the market table and say "Hi".  This week we will be at both Forks Farm Market in Orangeville and the Back Mountain Library Market in Dallas. 

This past week the farm did suffer some loss.  We experienced our first major fox attack.  Multiple chickens fell victim to the fox, as Farmer Don and the dogs were just a little late to get out and chase the fox away.  Looks like the fox and the farmer will be going at each other for a little while longer.

Time to move on to the fields with lots of planting, projects and harvest to complete.

Have a great week, be safe, be well and bring on the cool down!
Farmer Don.

Summer Squash harvest is in full swing here at the farm.  Lots and lots of zucchini and yellow summer squash being harvested and therefore going out in boxes each week.  If you find yourself with too many zucchini on hand, I would suggest grating and freezing it.  I generally grate the squash and place it in a colander to drain and then I squeeze out extra moisture before freezing.  The frozen grated zucchini works great for baking, so I measure and freeze in one cup portions.  I just saw an idea to form the grated zucchini into one cup balls, freeze them on a cookie sheet.  Once frozen the zucchini balls can be placed in gallon sized bags. 

Grilling summer squash:  If larger cut fruit in thirds, otherwise cut in half or leave whole.  Brush with olive oil and place on grill.  Grill on both sides.  Drizzle with balsamic vinegar, add salt and pepper to taste and top with a bit of fresh grated parmesan cheese.  A real farm favorite!

Zucchini Skillet Cakes (adapted from Vegetarian Suppers from Deborah Madison's Kitchenhttp://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=bookcarousel-20&l=ur2&o=1):

2 medium large zucchini, grated
1 egg, beaten (vegans can use 1/4 cup of pureed tofu, per Madison)
1-2 tbsp chives, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
1 tbsp dried marjoram (or 2 to 3 tbsp fresh)
grated zest of 1 very small lemon
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 cup pine nuts
1/8 cup capers
olive oil
salt & pepper (be careful with the salt, as capers can be quite salty)

Sprinkle the grated zucchini with salt and place in a colander to drain for 15 minutes. Squeeze out as much liquid as you can from the grated zucchini using your hands or the back of a large wooden spoon. The more moisture you can remove, the easier it will be to keep the cakes together when frying.

In a large bowl, mix together the beaten egg, chives, garlic, parsley, marjoram, and lemon zest. Add the zucchini, breadcrumbs, and capers.

In a large non-stick skillet, heat some olive oil over med. heat. Spoon out desired amount of mixture and form into a round cake in the frying pan.  Cook until the bottom is firm enough that you can flip it. (I found it easier to cook several smaller cakes, although the recipe suggested one large cake.  Smaller were easier for me to flip!) Cook on the other side until firm. Keep warm on a plate in the oven until all the cakes are cooked.

To serve, we generally top the cakes with either a fresh salad of tomatoes or small bit of homemade tomato sauce.  

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