Beautiful weather this week - bring your friends and family. Walk the fields, pick tomatoes, flowers and herbs and enjoy the farm.
On the table in Farm Shop:
- Greens Mix and Match - Choose from Kales, Arugula, Braising Mix. Extras for sale.
- Summer Mix and Match - Choose from Eggplants, Cucumbers, Zucchini, Yellow Squash and Peppers (sweet red and greens). Extras for sale - $1/lb (peppers $1.25/lb).
- Other crops included - Leeks, Potatoes, Watermelon and Hot Peppers.
PYO fields marked with yellow flags. Please watch your step and stay in the marked rows as we have more beans and greens seeded close by and they are small. Thanks!
- Tomatoes - 2 quarts total. Choose cherries, grapes, plums. Extras for sale $1.25. Note: fields are wet and grassy. We are not able to get a mower through so either wear long pants, sneakers and/or boots. Otherwise if you like the grass and dew between your toes, wear shorts and flip flops!
- Flowers and Herbs - lots out there. Fill a bucket! Check out our Farm Shop arrangements for ideas for fresh and dried use. Lots of flowers and herbs across the walking bridge. Also new Sunny's, zinnias and basil open next to tomatoes.
- Fall crops - planted/seeded and sizing up nicely - broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage (green and red), winter squash (butternut, acorn, spaghetti, buttercup and delicata), root crops (beets, turnips, rutabaga, parsnips, carrots), greens (spinach, kale, lettuce, escarole).
- Beans - another pick-your-own field should be open in a week or 2. After that, we have more seeded for late summer/fall harvest.
- Tomatoes will keep producing for another 2 weeks, hopefully 3. Although heavy rain on Tuesday did not help. Wet and humid conditions like we have been experiencing cut the crop short. As long as we have them, we will give you lots! Time to make the sauce!
- Other farm notes - not a great year for melons. Veteran members of the CSA are probably asking "Where are those tasty yellow watermelons?" and " Are we getting more cantaloupe and watermelon?" Due to the wet, cool weather, melons suffer. We will give out red watermelon, only 1 week though, and no yellow watermelon this year - crop loss. My farmer friends keep telling me that every year is differant - so true!
See you on the Farm.
New crops - Cantaloupe, Leeks, Sweet Red Peppers (yellow and oranges mixed in too) and Greens (Arugula and Braising Mix - choose 1 likely). Lots of Tomatoes (pick your own and big reds in the Farm Shop!), Sweet Onions and the Summer Mix and Match (Eggplant, Green Peppers, Cucumbers, Zucchini and Yellow Squash). Hot peppers too (take what you need, just like the herbs).
We will take a week off from the potato field and distribute every other week likely as we are hoping to extend the harvest in Farm Shop as long as we can. Leeks are a bit small due to weed pressure but have great leek flavor. With all of the rain earlier, we could not get our tractors in some fields to cultivate and fertilize such as the leeks. We decided to pull 1 bed early and let the other bed size up for the fall. Enjoy.
Tomatoes - cherries and plums, 2 quarts, mix and match varieties. Extras for sale, $1.25/lb
Herbs - take what you need. New Basil located next to tomatoes. Pick here or across the walking bridge. Cilantro not going to last long. We re-seeded this herb twice but it did not take, likely due to the hot weather. We will try again for a fall harvest. Lots of dill, thyme and oregano. Some parsley too.
Flowers - fill a bucket! Lots of flowers out there. Zinnias still going, new crop a week or 2 away. No Sunny's for a week or 2.
Flounder! We are so excited, nothing like fresh fish! Extras for sale, see Farm Shop for pricing.
Back again! Mozzarella (ball and string cheese), Cheddar, Gouda and Monterey Jack.
Others for sale -
- Extra produce (available for friends and family too).
- Chicken Sausages
See you on the Farm.
On the table in Farm Shop...
Tomatoes! Nice big red slicing tomatoes, plum varieties too. This time of year I eat a tomato sandwich everyday - simple and delicious. You could go basic with bread and mayo (or miracle whip). OR dress it up with bacon and avocado. Don't forget the pickles - hope you are making a few batches. Cucumbers are the best we ever grew! We got Onions and it is a nice crop too. Try caramelizing them and creating a main dish for your dinner table rather than using onions as a basic ingredient. Potatoes - they are on the small side and not as easy to peel as we are digging earlier this season due to the wet weather and fearing rot. They are perfect size though for roasting or making dirty potatoes (boiled/drained, skins on, mashed w/ olive oil, seasoned w/ salt/pepper and fresh herbs). We might have cabbage for another week too.
Super Summer Mix and Match! You decide what you like/need for the week. You choose any combination - cucumbers, zucchini, yellow squash, peppers and eggplant. We have an abundance of these crops and feel it is best you decide how much you want of them rather than us forcing too much of 1 crop on our members. As for colored bells, those pretty red and orange ones, they ripen from green to colored later in the summer. Soon we will offer red Italian peppers in shop, a sweet long variety, good for stuffing and roasting. As for the hot peppers, we treat these in Farm Shop as an herb - take what you need/want (within reason). Not everyone has a taste for hot, but sometimes you may want a little spice for a recipe.
PICK-YOUR-OWN - look for the yellow flags and please keep to the marked rows to avoid damage to nearby crops. Thanks!
- Tomatoes - 2 quarts/share. Extra sales $1.25/lb (that is about $2/quart). BRING YOUR FRIENDS/FAMILY TO PICK AND SHOW OFF YOUR FARM. TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE FRIENDS AND FAMILY DISCOUNT ON ORGANIC TOMATOES - WE GOT LOTS FOR EVERYONE!
- Herbs - take what you like/need. Looking good out there, we just weeded the beds - AGAIN! Basil (more seeded for continued harvest as this patch will end soon), dill, cilantro, parsley, thyme and oregano.
- Flowers - bring a small bucket and fill it up! Strip the leaves off, you will get more in there. Zinnias a little weedy, but lots out there. New patch coming in nice. Sunflowers are past their prime, but we have a 2 new patches seeded and plan to harvest them soon along with zinnias.
Quart containers: If you have quart containers at home piling up, consider reusing them for your share. We put fresh ones out every week, but it would help us if you could reuse your own for your share. Also, you can use your own containers (plastic, Tupperware, ziplocs, whatever). As long as it is a measured quart, we are fine with it! Thanks.
CHEESE? Due to circumstances beyond our control, the cheese order has been postponed another week. Our supplier is between managers therefore the orders and processing are backed up. We will continue to support our farmer friends as they are hard working and deliver a quality product. We ask for your patience during their transition period and apologize for the inconvenience.
EXTRAS FOR SALE - Blackberries ($3/ea. or 2 for $5) , Peaches (4/$1), Chicken Sausages ($6.75).
See you on the Farm.
The heat wave has broken! Much easier to get around the farm and work. Lovely week for pick your own crops.
On the table in Farm Shop... New crop - Sweet Onions! These are the best, we love our onions. Also Eggplant (classic purple and round Italian types), Peppers - Sweet Bells (yellow and greens) and Hots (jalapeño and Hungarian hot wax). Holy cow more Zucchini, Yellow Squash and Cucumbers! Mix and Match. These are bumper crops - be creative with your recipes. Shred and freeze summer squash for later use in baked dishes, dips, quiches, patties and breads. Plan ahead for the holidays and bake and freeze zucchini breads to gift in December. Try pickling squash and cucumbers, they make great gifts too. Other crops include Beets (last week until the fall), Cabbage and Potatoes - mix and match. Looking ahead to next week, likely Cantaloupes. We walk the fields daily and have our eye on them.
Look for the yellow flags. Please stay in marked rows to avoid damage to other crops. Thanks! Don't forget your scissors for cutting herbs and flowers.
- Tomatoes - lots of nice tomatoes out there! 2 quarts, mix and match the varieties. Orange sun golds are great! Try oven drying a quart. Slice in half and spread on cookie sheet, drizzle with olive oil, coarse salt/fresh cracked pepper, chopped herbs (I like thyme the best here). Bake on low heat, about 300 for an hour or so, until desired. I let them caramelize, I really don't dry them, but you can keep them in longer. These roasted beauties have endless uses for meals - top crackers and soft cheese, add to pasta, make a relish, freeze for later use in soups/stews.
- Flowers - pick about 30 stems, limit 5 sunflowers though. Mix and match with flowers over the walking bridge. Choose zinnias, gomphrena (pink and purple globes, great fresh and dried) and others marked. I say bring a small bucket for the harvest. You can fill up with water from the hose in the back or the water cooler in shop.
- Herbs - take what you need/want. Basil, dill, cilantro, oregano, thyme, some parsley. Take extra for drying too. I have some hanging over my fireplace, looks and smells great. Or hang a few bunches above your kitchen window.
SEAFOOD: Oysters. Wed Farm Shop only! We will have extras for sale.
BLACKBERRIES - local AND organic.
PEACHES - LOCAL.
CHEESE - SOLD OUT UNTIL NEXT WEEK. This is a new product for us and we did not know how well it would sell so we did not buy in much. Seems members love it, especially the mozzarella, so we will have the shop stocked for next week.
See you on the Farm.
2 quart jars or 4 pints
Dill, 1 small handful
Kosher Salt, 1-2 tbs
Cucumbers, about 6 small/medium
Garlic, 1 tsp chopped per pint
Peppercorns, whole, 1-2 per pint
Dry Mustard, ½ tsp per pint
2/3 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
Water, as needed
Cut Cucumbers into spears or rounds. Put in a bowl and sprinkle with Dill and Salt. Toss to coat and let sit for about ½ hour. Place cucumbers in jars. Divide evenly among jars Garlic, Peppercorns, Dry Mustard and Vinegar. Add water to fill. Screw on lids and shake to mix. Put in fridge and eat the next day. Pickles will last 2-3 weeks.
Easy Bread and Butter
2 quart jars or 4 pints
Zucchinni 1 cup
Kosher Salt 1tsp salt,
White Vinegar, 1 cup
Sugar, 2 cups
1tsp celery seed
1tsp mustard seed
Cut Veggies into spears or rounds. Put in a bowl and sprinkle w/ salt. Toss to coat and let sit. Meanwhile combine vinegar, sugar and spices and boil, stirring often to avoid sticking. Allow mixture to cool for 1hr (otherwise veggies will be mushy). Pour mix over veggies and ladel into jars, dividing veggies and liquid evenly. Screw on lids and shake to mix. Put in fridge and eat the next day. Pickles will last 2-3 weeks.
What a week! The heat is intense but the crew is working through it. We are working early and ending early to beat the heat, drinking plenty of water and resting as needed throughout the day. Everyone is working smart and staying healthy in the heat to get jobs done and put food on the table for our members.
This week's share:
Eggplant, Peppers (sweet green bells and hots), Cucumbers, Zucchini, Yellow Squash, Potatoes, Cabbage, Beets, Scallions. Also on the table in Farm Shop flowers, basil, dill and cilantro - see PYO cont. below for details.
New PYO - Tomatoes! 6 rows open of cherries (red and orange), grape and a few plums out there - 1 quart total. Mix and match the varieties. Crop just coming on so look low on the plants. I highly recommend the orange sun golds - super sweet and yummy! Also PYO Beans, new field. We seed beans throughout the season for continued quality and harvest. 1 quart. Enjoy.
Pick-Your-Own (PYO) cont.
- Take it easy, bring water and rest as needed in a shady spot.
- Look for the yellow flags in the rows indicating PYO. New crops open - tomatoes, second planting of beans and more flowers.
- PYO hours Mon-Fri 8-4, Wed 8-6, Sat 9-12, Sun closed. If you can, come to the farm for PYO crops to avoid the peak heat. The PYO share will be posted in Farm Shop, take a look at the board and help yourself to the fields. Please note, if you would like to purchase extras (cheese, sausage), you may do so during Farm Shop hours only. Thanks.
As for picking up your share this week and the heat, we are helping members out with a few of the PYO crops. We have harvested some flowers and herbs and they will be in the Farm Shop for you to take a few - glads, basil, dill and cilantro. These crops will not last in this heat and the herbs will go to seed so we have cut them back hard for a continued harvest in the coming weeks. If you want thyme, oregano and other flowers, you will have to walk the fields. As for the PYO field over the bridge, we have cleaned this up - the weeds were getting crazy, making it difficult to walk and enjoy the harvest. Please take lots of zinnias, they love to be cut, it helps them to put out more flowers for continued harvest.
Extra produce for sale in Farm Shop - bring a friend and show off YOUR farm!
- Cucumbers, Zucchini, Yellow Squash, Beets and Cabbage. $1/lb.
Cheese and Chicken Sausage too - see Farm Shop for selection and prices.
See you on the Farm.
On the table in Farm Shop...
New crops - Peppers (Sweet Green Bells and Hots), Potatoes and Cabbage (caraflex - a small, cone shaped crunchy type). Also Cucumbers, Zucchini, Yellow Squash, Beets, Lettuce, Scallions, Garlic Scapes. In the next week, cherry tomatoes should be open. Still not enough for everyone to pick so we will hold off another week.
Extra Produce Sales - Chinese Cabbage, Kohlrabi and Garlic Scapes - last week for these crops so if you want to stock up the freezer do so now. Also, Cucumbers - time to make the pickles! Zucchini, Yellow Squash and Beets. Bring a friend to the farm and purchase extras of our Certified Organic produce! Farm fresh and great prices for organic.
PLEASE BRING YOUR OWN SCISSORS AND CONTAINERS FOR YOUR HARVEST. We are down to 2 pairs of scissors. If you borrowed from us, kindly return to the counter. We will have water to fill your containers, both for harvest and drinking. It has been very hot and humid in the fields so take it easy out there and let us know if you need assistance, we will be happy to help. As a reminder, PYO fields are always open during non-farm shop hours, pick when it is convenient/most comfortable for you.
PYO Hours: Mon-Fri 8-4, Wed 8-6, Sat 9-12.
- Beans - last week for this patch, BUT a new seeded patch will be open next week. 1 quart. Beans are harder to pick as they get older and the hot weather eventually takes its toll on the crop. Still nice beans out there so enjoy the harvest.
- Flowers - Sunflowers and Glads at peak harvest now. Cut 6 stems, your choice. All Sunny's, all Glads or mix and match. Also, zinnias across the foot bridge.
- Herbs - Basil, Dill, Cilantro, Thyme, Oregano. Some parsley out there but most eaten by caterpillars. Take what you need/want. Lots of Basil so don't be shy, fill a bag. Herbs and flowers like to be cut! It helps to keep the plants healthy and coming back for continued harvest.
Seafood (Wed Farm Shop only) - Clams, littleneck's. Nautical Nuggets, Port Republic, NJ. http://sfc.smallfarmcentral.com/dynamic_content/uploadfiles/1299/Littleneck%20Clams_Nautical%20Nuggets%20updated.pdf We will have a few extras for purchase.
Say Cheese! - Fulper Farms, Lamberville, NJ (http://www.fulperfarms.com/) and Klein Farms, PA (http://kleinfarms.zxq.net/) products available for purchase on Sat and beyond. Farm fresh mozzarella, ricotta, cheddar, Gouda and Colby.
Chicken Sausage - Griggstown Farm, Princeton, NJ (http://www.griggstownquailfarm.com/). Available for purchase in our Farm Shop throughout the season. Take a look in the freezers and choose from Apple, Sun-dried Tomato/Basil, White Wine/Garlic/Parsley and Broccoli Rabe.
Farm Shop Hours: Wed 3-6, Sat 9-12. Please do your best to have your share collected from the Farm Shop AND PYO fields by closing hours. Thanks!
See you on the Farm.
On the table in Farm Shop... New crop this week - Beets. Also, Cucumbers, Zucchini, Yellow Squash, Lettuce, Napa Cabbage, Kohlrabi, Garlic Scape's, Scallions and Greens. Not sure of amounts just yet, I think we will do a lot of mix and match so you can take what you like. Bulk for sale too, see shop for details. Bring and friend and show off your farm! As a teaser - the crew has been sampling cherry tomatoes this week and they are looking (and tasting) pretty nice! Looks like 2 weeks from now we will be picking lots.
Pick-Your-Own... Bring your scissors AND muck boots! Fields are wet and weedy but nice crops out there for you. A friend once told me learn to dance in the rain rather than run from the storm. Great advice this season - as long as there is no thunder and lightning! In the front field - peas, open for gleaning, last week for this crop. Peas do not like the heat, they are a spring crop so take as much as you want, no limit. Pods are big, easy to shell if you wish to freeze. Seems like a good rainy day activity. Also in the front field - flowers. Glads and Sunny's. You may pick one each. For the Glads, cut low for a nice long stem and strip the leaves. For the Sunny's, they are just starting to open, choose one if you see it, otherwise take 2 glads. By next week this field should be in full bloom. In the back field across the pond, more flowers! Zinnias continue to branch out. Pick 6-7 stems. For the herbs, basil - lots out there, make pesto (don't forget the garlic scape's!), don't be shy, cut a nice bunch of basil. Thyme looking good, walk along the row for bigger plants to cut. For the other herbs, take what you need/want. Dill, cilantro and oregano just coming, not big yet but it will benefit from cutting as do all the herbs. PYO CROPS MARKED WITH A YELLOW FLAG. PLEASE STAY IN THE THESE ROWS TO PREVENT DAMAGE TO OTHER CROPS. THANKS!
- Flowers: in the front field along driveway...glads and Sunny's, choose one each (or 2 glads if no Sunny's); in the back field across the pond... zinnias, choose 6-7 stems.
- Herbs: in the back field across the pond... basil, thyme, dill, cilantro, oregano.
- Peas: in the front field along driveway... no limit.
- Beans: in the front field along driveway... 2 quart.
- Blueberries: B&B Farms, $1.40/lb
Don't forget your scissors for cutting and a container for water to keep your flowers and herbs fresh for the ride home. We will have a water cooler for you to fill up with. A cup that fits in your car cup holder works great for getting the harvest home. Also, while in the fields, please watch your step on the crops and try to stay in the walkways to prevent damage. Thanks and enjoy the fields!
Here is a recent article on the rain and the challenges of organic farming:
CSA Farm Shop Hours: Wed 3-6, Sat 9-12.
CSA PYO Hours - pick at your convenience/weather permitting: Mon-Fri 8-4 (Wed until 6), Sat 9-12, Sun Closed.
B&B Farms PYO Blueberries: Mon-Sun 8-4. NOTE: during farm shop hours, we can ring you up in the barn for your convenience.
On the farm, we have been busy, but more so than usual it seems this time of year due to the wet and cold spring, followed by continued rain. It has done a few things to make us crazy: delayed the harvest of crops like cucumbers, melons, tomatoes, eggplants and peppers - delayed NOT lost; flooded portions of our fields thus losing some greens that we planned to offer in the next few weeks such as spinach; more rain left half our potato field under water and we suffered some loss here too; wet fields have kept our tractors in the barn that we use to cultivate for weed control (LOTS of weeds) and plant and replant as needed according to our CSA schedule.
While this might sound somewhat worrisome, the CSA has acquired more land at B&B Farms this season on higher and drier ground thanks to owner Art Brown. We thank him for his support and commitment to local and sustainable agriculture. The new plots are not Certified Organic rather Transitional as the certification process takes 3 years to accomplish. Our commitment remains to offer quality crops on a weekly basis for a 20 week season. We ask our members to be patient with some crops like eggplant and embrace bumper crops like cabbage!
As we look ahead to the week 4 harvest, we will welcome beets! Also, lots of green beans out there in the pick-your-own fields.
Produce Tips - cookbooks and recipes:
As more and more people sign up for a CSA or decide to shop at the farmers market, they find themselves faced with what to do with all the produce! No one likes to waste food, and not everyone is equipped to pull veggies out of the frig and just start cooking, especially when their local farmers are introducing them to members of the plant kingdom that are entirely unfamiliar. ("Errr.... what is this thing and how on Earth do you eat it?"). Therefore we are offering a few resources to help answer some questions: what else can you do with kale? And, what's for supper?
The first cookbook is a new publication from the creators of the popular From Asparagus to Zucchini, A Guide to Cooking Farm-Fresh Seasonal Produce, I rely on this one. The new book is called Farm-Fresh and Fast: Easy Recipes and Tips For Making the Most of Fresh, Seasonal Foods. In addition to all the new recipes, this book is valuable for its unique organization. Fruits and vegetables are grouped by anatomical type (e.g. leafy greens, roots) so that readers can learn how to make substitutions within like types. Each section also includes several "master recipes" from which home cooks can absorb the basic template for making, say, a blended vegetable soup, and then venture off on their own.
As a CSA member, whether new or returning, perhaps you need a shot of inspiration and to set yourself up for a successful season of eating: get a good cookbook. Having appealing recipes at your fingertips takes the intimidation out of working with vegetables that are new to you, and makes the process of cooking even your old standbys something to look forward to.
See you on the Farm.
On the table in Farm Shop... Cucumbers, Yellow Squash, Zucchini, Chinese Cabbage (also called Napa), Lettuce. Mix and Match - you choose Scallions OR Garlic Scapes. Also greens, your choice - Bok Choy, Kale OR Swiss Chard.
Pick-Your-Own (PYO): BRING YOUR OWN SCISSORS AND CONTAINERS FOR HERBS AND FLOWERS, THANKS! WE SUGGEST WEARING SNEAKERS OR SHOES THAT YOU DON'T MIND GETTING DIRTY. FIELDS CAN BE WET TOO.
- Green Beans - 1 quart, AND Peas (go for the snaps, the tall plants) - 1 quart
- Herbs (Basil and Thyme) - take what you need. These crops are just coming in.
- Flowers - Zinnias. Please take a few as they are just coming in. As we pick, they will get fuller.
PYO HOURS: Fields open all week, pending Mother Nature. Pick when the time and or the weather is right for you! PLEASE LEAVE ENOUGH TIME TO BE FINISHED PICKING BY CLOSING HOURS. THANKS! We will have signs posted for you to follow. Peas and Beans are in the same field along the driveway, Zinnias and Herbs are across the pond over a little walking bridge.
- CSA fields Mon-Fri 8-4, Wed 8-6, Sat 9-12, Sun closed.
- B&B Farms PYO Blueberries Mon-Sun 8-4, Wed 8-6. Blueberries $1.40/lb. CSA members during Farm Shop hours can pick from the barn, you do not have to go to the house garage.
SEAFOOD - WED PICKUP ONLY: SCALLOPS! We will be selling extras, first come first serve. $25/2 lb bag. These scallops are the best, very nice portion size and are fresh. Extras freeze well too.
Chicken Sausages - Griggstown Farm, Princeton, NJ. $6.75/package. Our freezers are now stocked with 4 varieties: Sun dried Tomato/Basil, Broccoli Raab, White Wine/Parsley, Granny Smith Apple. All varieties pair nicely with pasta and greens. Help yourselves to the freezers and we will ring you up at the counter.
Peas, Lettuce, Garlic Scapes, Yellow Squash, Zucchini, Cabbage, Kohlrabi, Bok Choy, Swiss Chard
Cash or Check only in Farm Shop. We do not accept credit cards at this time. Thanks.
See you on the Farm.