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This week one of our fabulous interns, Bjorn, waxes poetic about hot days on the farm.
Baby lettuces shining in the morning sun

How HOT can it get??

August is living up to its age-old status as the epitome of mature summer. Behind us is mild, rainy, salmonberry-abundant June. A thing of the past is July, which saw Independence Day finally nudge aside the eternal spring (June-uary, as we were calling it) for some sustained sunshine and heat. Now it’s mid-August, and what is the crescendo of summer if not the prelude to Fall? Can’t be a coincidence that the hummingbirds seem to have disappeared overnight.
 
What does sunshine and heat mean for us at Oxbow? For starters, it’s good conditions for refining your irrigation-moving techniques. Twice a day, at least, we move up to five hundred feet of aluminum piping and sprinkler heads, reconfiguring the supply hoses that run down to the Snoqualmie and pump water to keep our precious crops prospering. It is a constant task but the rewards are upon us and show no signs of abatement
 
Sunshine brings the goods. New classes of broccoli, cabbage and lettuce are here. As for beets and carrots, all the colors and sizes and shapes you could ask for. Baby Chioggia?  All the live-long day. Gargantuan red aces? Golden beets, just right for Goldilocks? Yep and yep. Purple carrots that look eerily like squid? You may have the luck of the draw. And to anyone prematurely impressed with the selection and abundance of our leaf and root crops, the true flabbergasting will be handled by our bean and squash plants. While we tucked our fava beans in for the season a few days ago… Our bewitching purple and white Dragon’s Tongue beans and Provider and Romano green beans are just getting their hamstrings limber for a marathon of fruit production. Zucchini, Patty Pan and other eye-catching summer squash have become a regular sight to our members and diehard market-goers alike, and still they seem to grow another burst every time you turn your back on them. But waiting patiently next door to the summer squash are the true delayed gratification crops that will help us all segue from summer to autumn foods. The winter squash (butternut, acorn, spaghetti, pumpkins, to name only a few) have been hogging twenty-five square feet each all season, are showing fruit and will soon bury us in their products. Autumn crops are good in the oven, their seeds excellent toasted. Without pumpkins we will have no jack-o-lanterns. Without the GIANT pumpkins, we can have no hopes of a farm staff pump-canoe regatta.
 
We love seeing all of you at markets and we love hearing your feedback about what all wonderful happens to the boxes we send out. We can’t thank you enough for your interest, your involvement and your support, and we look forward to having you all ride into autumn with us. So wish us luck. But we don’t like to call it luck. We call it: Loving what you do makes you good at it.
 
Written by 2012 intern, Bjorn Kruse
  
Organically,
Luke, Adam, Sarah, Megan, Yolanda, Tino, Valentin, Julio Cesar, Mariana, Mike, Alice, Bjorn, Siobhan, Amy, Nate, Linda, Dana, Deb, Shira, Pearl & Sweet-Cheeked Emuna!

The Skinny on your Veg

Dragon’s Tongue Beans
Oxbow's dragon tongue beansThese beauties are a Dutch variety wax bean originally cultivated in the 18th century. It is a pale yellow bean pod with vivid purple stripes. Like green beans the whole pod can be eaten, the pod is string-less and exceptionally crisp & juicy, tasty raw right out of the box or lightly cooked. A quick braise or sauté all the cooking they need, if you cook them for too long they will lose their purple coloring. So don’t cook ‘em for too long!

This Week's Recipes

DRAGON’S TONGUE BEANS w/ CARAMELIZED ONIONS
From the Oxbow recipe archive
  • 1 lb DT Beans, stem ends popped off
  • 2 T Butter
  • 2 medium or 1 large Onion, sliced as thinly as possible
  • 1 C chicken or veggie Stock or Water
  • 1 ½ T Sugar
  • 1 T red wine Vinegar
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
Cook beans in boiling salted water ‘til tender, approx. 5 minutes. Drain and immerse in ice water to stop the cooking (this will ensure your beans stay crisp & delightful). 
 
Melt butter in skillet over medium flame. Stir in onions and cook them slowly until very wilted and deepened in color, 15 or so minutes. Deglaze pan with stock or water and boil for 5 minutes to reduce and concentrate flavors. Stir in sugar and vinegar. Add beans to the onions and heat through (just a minute or two). Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Yu-hum!


CHILLED OXBOW FARM FENNEL SOUP
From Seth Caswell, executive chef & owner of Emmer & Rye
  • 2 large heads of fennel, reserve some fennel fronds for garnish
  • 1 large Walla Walla onions, sliced thinly
  • 1 T butter
  • 1/2 C white wine
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 C vegetable (preferred) or chicken stock
  • 1/4 C heavy cream
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 325°
 
Chop white fennel bulbs into large pieces and place in large, heavy-bottomed, oven-proof pan/casserole. Add butter, season lightly with salt and pepper. Warm fennel and butter over medium-low flame for ten minutes, until fennel becomes fragrant.  Butter should not brown. Add onions, thyme and white wine; increase the heat to medium-high. Reduce wine by half, and then add vegetable stock. Bring to a boil, then cover and place in oven for 45 minutes. Fennel is done when it is soft.
 
Remove thyme sprigs and cool slightly. In batches, place fennel, with the stock and onions, in a blender. Season with salt and pepper and add two tablespoons of cream to each batch. Puree on medium speed for two minutes. Repeat until all of the fennel is pureed. Chill soup well before serving.
 
The soup can be garnished with the lacy fennel fronds and extra virgin olive oil.


BEET & CARROT LATKES
From Edible Finger Lakes Magazine ~ Winter 2008
  • 2 medium beets, coarsely grated
  • 2 medium carrots, coarsely grated
  • 1 medium onion, coarsely grated
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 C all-purpose flour
  • 3 T olive oil
  • coarse salt and fresh ground Pepper to taste
  • Sour cream or crème fraiche, for serving
  • Chopped chives, for serving
Combine the grated vegetables in a bowl. Add the beaten eggs, stir to combine, then stir in the flour and salt and pepper to taste.
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F, and set a cooling rack on a sheet pan. Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When the oil is hot, scoop 1/3 cup of the latke mixture into the skillet, and flatten to 1/4 inch thick. Scoop 3 more latkes into the skillet. Cook the 4 latkes until golden brown, about 4-6 minutes per side. Remove the latkes to the cooling rack on the sheet pan, and place them in the oven to keep the latkes warm while you cook the remaining four.
Add another 1 1/2 tablespoons oil to the skillet and cook the remaining latkes. When all the latkes are done, serve them warm with a dollop of sour cream or crème fraiche and a sprinkling of chives.

 
CLASSIC ITALIAN PESTO
From 101cookbooks.com
A bit more effort than using a food processor, but enjoyable in a meditative way and produces a tastier pesto… really.
  • 1 large bunch of Basil, leaves only, washed and dried
  • 3 medium cloves of Garlic
  • One small handful of raw Pine Nuts (walnuts also work nicely)
  • Roughly 3/4 C Parmesan, loosely packed and FRESHLY GRATED
  • A few tablespoons of extra-virgin Olive Oil
Start chopping the garlic along with about 1/3 of the basil leaves. Once this is loosely chopped add more basil, chop some more, add the rest of the basil, chop some more. I scrape and chop, gather and chop. At this point the basil and garlic should be a very fine mince. Add about half the pine nuts, chop. Add the rest of the pine nuts, chop. Add half of the Parmesan, chop. Add the rest of the Parmesan, and chop. In the end you want a chop so fine that you can press all the ingredients into a basil "cake" - see the photo up above. Transfer the pesto "cake" to a small bowl (not much bigger than the cake). Cover with a bit of olive oil; it doesn't take much, just a few tablespoons.
You can set this aside or place it in the refrigerator until you are ready to use it. Just before serving give the pesto a quick stir to incorporate some of the oil into the basil. She occasionally thins the pesto with a splash of pasta water for more coverage, but for our gnocchi this wasn't necessary.
Makes about 1 cup.


Yum!

Week #10:


Box Highlights:

  • Dragon's Tongue Beans

Recipes:

  • DT Beans w/ Caramelized Onions
  • Chilled Fennel Soup
  • Beet & Carrot Latkes
  • Classic Italian Pesto

This Week's Harvest:

Family Share

2012 Week #10 Family Share
  • 1 bu Oxbow Carrots
  • 1 lb Dragons Tongue Beans
  • 1 Diva Slicer Cucumber
  • 2 Fennel w/ fronds
  • 1 bu Red Russian Kale
  • 1 Jericho Romaine
  • 1 Butterhead Lettuce
  • 1 bu fresh Onions*
  • 2 head Treviso Radicchio
  • 2 Zucchini
  • 1 bu Basil

Small Share

2012 week #10 - Small Share
  • 1 bu Oxbow Carrots
  • 1 lb Dragons Tongue Beans
  • 1 bu Golden Beets
  • 1 bu Red Russian Kale
  • 1 Jericho Romaine
  • 1 farmer's choice lettuce
  • 1 bu fresh Onions*
  • 1 head Treviso Radicchio
  • 1 bu Basil

Fruit Share

  • 2.5 lbs mystery Peaches
  • 3.5 lbs Santa Rosa Plums

Add-Ons:

  • The jam this week is Green Italian Plum
  • This week's sauerkraut is Curry Kraut (my personal fav)

Box Notes from your Farmers:
 

*You onions this week are going to be either fresh Walla Walla sweets or fresh Red Tropeas. These are still fresh onions, meaning their skins haven't dried out yet, so they aren't ready for long storage. That makes them great for grilling or eating raw!

* Small shares farmer's choice lettuce will either be Lolo Rossa red leaf lettuce or Bolsa Chica green leaf lettuce.

**Please note that we do our best to have consistency in our boxes throughout the week. But, with over 300 members this is not always possible, So if the contents of your box don't exactly match this list, rest assured that we have substituted something equally scrumptious! You can also check out your box contents in your accounts on-line, we try and keep this up-to-date.

CSA Member Etiquette:

  • A little reminder of some of the CSA rules to help keep everyone happy. 
  • Please only take the box labeled with your name. This is especially important with all the add-ons we are adding in.
  • If you've have an egg share, please take the carton from the cooler that is labeled with your name. If you haven't ordered the egg share - don't take any eggs from the cooler!
  • If you are having a friend pick up your box (which is great), please make sure they know the above rules.
  • Please carefully breakdown your box and return it to your pickup location each week. Because they are heavily waxed they aren't recyclable so we try and use them as many times as possible before they go to the landfill.
  • If you would like to move your box to a different pickup location, please make sure to make the change 1 week before the pickup you want to make sure it's captured correctly.
  • Also if you want to change pickup day's, make sure you are staying in the same week. The system will not deliver 2 boxes in the same week. So, if you usually pickup on Sunday you can change to the following Friday NOT previous.  

The Oxbow Box Project:


This CSA season we have asked local chefs, cooks & food bloggers to experience the Oxbow Box for one week. They will cook with it, photograph/video it, feed their families or dinner guests and then report back to us about what great things they did with our vegetables!

Click here to see the latest entry.

CSA Pick-up Locations:

Sunday
Ballard Farmers Mkt, 10am-3pm
Plymouth Church, 10am-1pm
West Seattle - Proletariat Pizza, 4-8:30pm

Tuesday
Carnation Farmers Mkt, 3-7pm
Alpine Integrated Health, 1-5pm
Temple De Hirsch-Sinai, 3-6pm
Mercer Is. SJCC, 2-9:30pm
Meg's in Wallingford, 3-7pm
The Greatful Bread, 5-7pm
Cafe Flora, 3-8pm
Bristlecone, 4-6pm
UW Burke Museum, 3-6pm

Thursday
The Grange Cafe, 5-9pm
Marigold & Mint, 3-7pm
Anny's in Montlake, 2-8pm
North Seattle CC, 4-7pm
Queen Anne - Kavana, 3-7pm
Temple De Hirsch-Sinai, 3-6pm
UW Hillel, 3-7pm

Friday
Madrona Farmers Mkt, 3-7pm
Cupcake Royale Blve, 2-8pm
Monica's in Columbia City, 3-8pm
Bellevue Hopelink, 3-7pm

This week @ Market:

Farmer Adam & and huge pile of carrots
Farmer Adam & our glorious carrots

You can pick up Oxbow's finest at the following markets around town:

You can also find our fabulous veggies at our friends' fabulous organic flower shop Marigold and Mint in the Melrose Market on Capitol Hill (on Melrose ave between Pike & Pine)!



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Here's how you break down your family share box. (The small share box is now much simplier!).

How to break down a box illustration
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