Updated: Aug 27
Week 9: 8/6-8/9
Thursday 3pm - till Sunday Night | SELF SERVE 13197 10TH St. South. Afton, MN. 55001 | 612.770.7194
What we're up to:
August is typically a hard time of the year for farmers. By august, we are all burnt out, days are hot and long, weeds are knee high and taking over and we are trying to figure out what else we can plant and harvest before a killing frost ends the season sometime in October. It is the time of year when all feels lost or broken or in disarray. Quite a contrary notion to the majority of people who are enjoying the heat, the sun and the beautiful parks/beach/bbq's that make waiting for summer all winter worth it. This year although, Covid-19 has had this 'August' effect on a lot of people I think-not knowing what will come next or when things will change is planting a lot of weeds in the summer flowers. Everyone is a little crabby, anxious and worried, with good reason, but without many options for hoes and trowels. This year, I have been blessed with an amazing crew that, every day, puts in that little extra effort to get the project done or weed one more row. Lucia, Anna and Alma each have that ability to lighten the mood with a joke or a smile and to dig deep when the work seems to go on forever. These amazing women inspire me daily to work a little harder, smile more and appreciate the parts of the farm that are going really well instead of focusing on the wilted cucumbers. They are showing me the way through the weeds and through covid. I hope you all are blessed with amazing people in your lives too. Especially now, let's all make sure they know who they are and how much we appreciate them. I for one, could not survive all this without them...or you ;) Thanks for being awesome farm family!
In Your Bag This Week
Zucchini: easy to cook and eat, just chop and sauté. we grow several different kinds includeing one that is green and curved-has a bit more of a nutty flavor. Store in a bag in your fridge. Fennel: sweet and aromatic-fennel will brighten up any dish. Slice thin on a mandolin to eat raw in salads or chop in chunks or halves for roasting, grilling or sautéing. The frons are excellent used as an herb to flavor fish or chicken or add to a salad or dressing. Store in a bag in your fridge. Bok choy: great in any asian dish or add it to your grill! We sometimes put a little BBQ on ours for something different. Store in a bag in your fridge. Peppers: Mostly sweet peppers (key below) this week, core and stuff, grill, sauté or just eat raw! Excellent stuffed with chicken salad as an alternative to bread. Store on your counter for up to 3 days or in a bag in your fridge for a week or so. Green Onion: great in salads, marinades, rice dishes, you name it! Edible from root to end. Store in a bag in your fridge. Micros: Flavor Mix Micros. Eat as a salad with olive oil, salt and pepper or add to a sandwich, your breakfast eggs or pretty much anything else! Store in your fridge. Slicer and cherry Tomatoes: 1 for half shares and 2 for full, all our slicers are heirloom or heirloom hybrid types. This means they have been saved and grown for their flavor rather than for size or uniformity. Heirlooms can look a little...interesting, but don't let that turn you off-they make it up in flavor!! Store on your kitchen counter, do not put in the fridge or they loose their sweetness. Everyone also received a pint of cherry tomatoes too! Farm Mix: nice mild mix is great with just olive oil and salt or with all the rest of your veg chopped and thrown in. Store in your fridge.
Tuscan Braised Fennel | Servings: 4 | total time: 45 mins
3 bulbs fennel, scrubbed, cleaned 6 cups chicken stock salt and pepper, to taste extra virgin olive oil 1⁄4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Fully wash and trim the fennel bulbs.
Trim off the tops of the fennel and set aside. Leave enough of the base in tact so the fennel retains its form.
Cut the bulbs lengthwise (top to bottom) into pieces approximately 1” thick.
In a pan, parboil the fennel in chicken stock until slightly tender. Strain and retain the stock.
Place the braised fennel into a pan or cast iron dish that is lightly coated with extra virgin olive oil.
Pour about 1⁄2 cup of the chicken stock over the fennel, salt, pepper, and cover with 1⁄4 cup of Parmigiano-Reggiano.
Finely chop some of the fennel tops and sprinkle over the dish for added fennel flavor.
Place in the oven and cook until the top is golden brown, approximately 20–30 minutes.
Roasted Pepper and Mozzarella Sandwiches | Yields: 4 servings | total time: 25 mins
1 large pepper
1 large loaf ciabatta bread, cut in quarters and then halved lengthwise
1/4 cup Arugula Pesto (got any arugula left over from last week)
1 (8 oz) ball fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into 8 slices
Preheat oven to 500°F (broil).
Line a small baking sheet with foil. Put the pepper on the baking sheet and broil until the skin is beginning to char, using tongs to turn occasionally, about 10 minutes. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and wrap the foil around the pepper. (Use oven mitts!) Let the pepper steam in the foil for 10 minutes.
Remove the pepper from the foil and transfer it to a cutting board. Peel off the skin, cut off the stem, pull out the seeds, and discard them. Cut the rest of the pepper into thick strips.
Spread 1 tablespoon of pesto onto the bottoms of the ciabatta bread. Divide the pepper strips onto the bread, then place the mozzarella slices on top of the pepper strips. Top with the remaining slices of bread and brush the tops with olive oil. (If you’re going to serve the sandwiches cold, don’t brush them with oil—just eat them!)
Heat a grill pan or griddle over medium heat. Flip the sandwiches over and place them on the grill pan oiled-side down, then brush the other side of the sandwich with oil. Use a spatula to press the sandwiches down slightly, but don’t press too hard or you’ll have a mess of mozzarella everywhere! Cook 5–8 minutes on each side, or until golden brown.
We wash everything in your bag but we wash them in bulk so some things may need an extra rinse at home. Please bring your bag back next week so we can re-use them! thanks!