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In Your Share, for the week of May 21, 2018

By Laura

We are excited to have fava beans in the share so early this season! I had become frustrated with fall planted fava beans in recent years. They can be magnificent – like our current crop – but they can also fail miserably. The timing is challenging and size matters. If the plants are too large in the fall, they will be more susceptible to freezing. If the plants are too small, then they won’t have very many beans in the spring. Three years ago we planted a whole field and had a fabulous stand of fava bean plants – just the right size going into the winter, but despite all the TLC we gave them, the crop froze out completely. Planting the field is alot of work so I vowed not to do that again. But then I accidentally discovered a much easier way to plant in the fall – just till in the spring crop after they set seed! This means we need to weed our spring fava beans a few times after harvest and get the timing right on the tilling – late August or early Sept. But that is a heck of a lot easier then planting by hand!! And I’d need to till the field anyway – so the fact that we get more beans out of the deal is a bonus. And if they die over the winter, I’m sad, but my investment was minimal so we just plant again in the spring. Enjoy these fortuitous fava beans!

We still have a few spots available in the CSA so feel free to let your friends know they can still get in on the bounty with a prorated Summer CSA share share starting next week.

You’ll find recipes everything in your share, at Cook With What You Have. If you’re a CSA member, you will find your password in your most recent email. Enjoy 24/7 access to recipe inspiration!

This week your share may include…

  • Cauliflower: Beautiful, big heads! I’m excited about Cauliflower Steaks with Green Garlic Aioli. Or try this Cauliflower Pasta from one of our favorite local hangouts in Sellwood – Gino’s Restaurant.
  • Popcorn: Whole cobs are fun to pop in the microwave – just put them in a paper bag, loosely fold the top down, and cook them on high for 2-3min. Warning – 3 min max!! More time in the microwave can set the cob on fire. You can also take the kernels off the cob and use your favorite popping technique.
  • Dried Cayenne Peppers: We grow a variety of hot peppers in the summer time, but this is the best one by far for drying. It has a thin skin and the meat of the pepper is flavorful and spicy. You can add a whole one to a pot of soup or stew – or grind it up and make your own DIY Hot Pepper Flakes.
  • Fava Beans: Beautiful, early, flavorful and fun! This time of year you don’t have to double peel if you don’t want to. In fact, my favorite way to cook these is whole and in the pod. Try this Fresh Grilled Fava Beans recipe.
  • Garlic Whistles aka Scapes: Roasted garlic scapes are SOOOO good! I coat them with olive oil, add salt & pepper and spread a pile of them on a cookie sheet. Set them under the broiler until they start to wilt and caramelize. The BBQ works well too – just be careful they don’t slip through the grill. Makes for fun finger food!
  • Green Garlic: Lovely plump garlic stalks for you in the share today. Green garlic is planted alongside our storage garlic in the fall. It grows a vigorous root system through the winter, and pushes up its little green stalks in the spring. We harvest green garlic now – when the greens are tender and before it has much of a bulb.  Similar to leeks – the white part is most tender, but the green tops have good garlic flavor too. Enjoy these little beauties while they last!
  • Walla Walla Sweet Spring Onions: These are tender and tasty! We call them spring onions to differentiate them from storage onions. This time of year the spring onions have beautiful greens on them which can be used like just like a green onion.
  • Yellow Potato: These yellow Nicola potatoes are great roasted, steamed or boiled.
  • Radish Microgreens: These zesty little treats make a nice topping for soups, salad or sandwiches.

 

Coming soon… Hakurei Turnip and Round Red Radish! 

 

Our summer CSA comes with a chef!

By Laura

Katherine DeumlingOne of the things people love about our CSA is eating in tune with the seasons. We meticulously research varietals that thrive in our climate, and plant and harvest them when they want to be planted and harvested. We work for nature, not the other way around!

That gives each pickup a wonderful sense of discovery, but that’s only half the fun: then you get to eat what you bring home!

That’s why every 47th Avenue Farm share comes with members-only access to Cook With What You Have, an amazing online resource curated by local chef and food activist Katherine Deumling that’s packed with great recipes – and even better, specifically tuned to what’s in your CSA pickup each week.

Give it a try yourself, for free. Katherine’s unlocked two easy recipes featuring cauliflower and green garlic, two (of many) veggies our shareholders can look forward to among the first pickups.
Give them a try!

Yum. Katherine says, “I’ve been collaborating with Laura for seven years, and I love how farms like hers bring so much beautiful, nutritious and delicious food to our tables. And knowing what to do with that fresh produce is a big part of a healthy and vibrant community and planet. You don’t need fancy tools or ingredients to nourish yourself and your loved ones everyday.”

Shareholders tell me they’ve gone for stretches where they just choose a veggie from our share, pull up her site, and just randomly pick any recipe she’s got for it. They’ve never been disappointed. It’s like having a personal CSA chef consultant!

I’d like to share it with you. Our pioneering Summer Veggie CSA – with two pickups in SE Portland and Lake Oswego’s Luscher Farm – starts today, on May 15th. Join us!

First Summer CSA Share!!

By Laura

Welcome to the first Summer CSA Pickup of the 2018 season!! The spring planting season has been almost perfect this year giving us a nice mix of sunshine and rainy days. We always try and keep the farm pantry full, so in addition to spring planted veggies in your share you will also see some overwintering crops like cauliflower and garlic, and storage crops like potatoes and beans. This makes for a diverse and bountiful basket throughout the year!

I think it is interesting this time of year to consider how the types of spring crops you’ll see in your share is dictated by the trajectory of the growing plant. The seed germinates driving the primary root down into the soil. Then the cotyledon emerges stretching for the sky. After it sheds its seed coat, the true leaves emerge. Next, come secondary roots and above ground the stem elongates and more leaves are produced. For this reason, traditional spring veggies are often roots, shoots & leaves: microgreens, lettuce, herbs, radish, carrots, & beets are all variations on this same theme. Most plants need to produce a significant amount of vegetative growth before they are able to make flowers and fruits. This is why things like broccoli (flower buds) & tomatoes (technically a fruit) are usually harvested later in the season. Of course we turn this on it’s head by having a few things in storage, or growing on the farm over the winter, but in general that is a pretty simple synopsis of springtime food.

We still have a few spots available in the CSA so feel free to let your friends know they can still get in on the bounty with a prorated Summer CSA share share starting next week.

You’ll find recipes everything in your share, at Cook With What You Have. If you’re a CSA member, you will find your password in your most recent email. Enjoy 24/7 access to recipe inspiration!

This week your share may include…

  • Dry Beans: This Calypso variety is a variation on the black bean theme that has a white overlay. It is also sometimes called the Yin/Yang or Orca bean because of the distinctive color pattern. Use them in any recipe that calls for black beans.
  • Cauliflower: Beautiful, big heads! I’m excited about Cauliflower Steaks with Green Garlic Aioli. Or try this Cauliflower Pasta from one of our favorite local hangouts in Sellwood – Gino’s Restaurant.
  • Cooking Celery: The flavor has a slightly stronger flavor than celery from the store, but it really shines when the sugars start to caramelize. Try roasting or sautéing – then add to soup or au gratin or your favorite celery recipe.
  • Green Garlic: Lovely plump garlic stalks for you in the share today. Green garlic is planted alongside our storage garlic in the fall. It grows a vigorous root system through the winter, and pushes up its little green stalks in the spring. We harvest green garlic now – when the greens are tender and before it has much of a bulb.  Similar to leeks – the white part is most tender, but the green tops have good garlic flavor too. Enjoy these little beauties while they last!
  • Baby Lettuce: I’m loving these compact baby heads of red romaine!  Nice to have an early summer salad : )
  • Walla Walla Sweet Spring Onions: These are tender and tasty! We call them spring onions to differentiate them from storage onions. This time of year the spring onions have beautiful greens on them which can be used like just like a green onion.
  • Yellow Potato: These yellow Nicola potatoes are great roasted, steamed or boiled.
  • Radish Microgreens: These zesty little treats make a nice topping for soups, salad or sandwiches.

Coming soon… A Whole Summer Full of Yummy Veggies!

 

This beautiful spring means a bountiful summer!

By Laura

Farming Grand Island under a Turner-like skyWhat a glorious spring it’s been! Just the right amount of sun, a perfect range of temperatures, and the kind of pristine air only rain showers can bring. We’ve been mowing down lush flowering fields of winter cover crop and planting spring & summer veggies. Whether I’m driving the draft horses or the electric tractor it is remarkable time of year to be out in the fields. Churning up the scent of fresh, pure soil, I’m overwhelmed with the sense that anything is possible.

Boy, I think to myself, this is why I’m a farmer.

And of course, it doesn’t hurt that a beautiful spring like this also makes incredible summer vegetables – something that also swells my farmer’s soul as I walk the fields. Even after more than two decades of farming, I’m still amazed what a miracle it is that these baby seeds & plants will soon become the incredible bounty of the summer.

Will you join me for it? Our pioneering Summer Veggie CSA – with convenient pickups in SE Portland and at Lake Oswego’s Luscher Farm – starts next week!

Pickups are once a week for 24 weeks, and despite all the care and hand work we shower on our vegetables, the cost is as little as $3.50 a day (or $6.30 a day for a more ample, family-size pickup). In fact, on average, you’d pay 10-20% more for the same veggies at your local natural food store or farmers market. I’m really proud of the value we continue to offer our shareholders.

Getting started is easy: simply sign up before your first pickup – SE Portland, or Lake Oswego’s Luscher Farm. Then, 24 glorious weeks of delicious, local, sustainably farmed produce are yours!

In Your Share (April 16th edition)

By Laura

Hello gorgeous green garlic!! It is such a treat this time of year and doesn’t last long in this truly tender stage. Garlic is planted in the fall, grows roots in the winter, grows shoots in the spring and the fully mature bulbs are harvested just after the 4th of July. While technically edible at any time, we harvest garlic at several distinct stages: green garlic has a straight white shank and tender top, spring garlic has started to form a bulb, but the individual cloves are not separated yet, and fresh & dry storage garlic looks similar to what you see at the store but our varieties are more fresh, flavorful and delish!  All these share the characteristically delightful pungent essence of garlic but each has their distinct charms. You’ll get plenty of green garlic in this last week of winter share. To taste test the other variations on the garlic theme you’ll just have to join us for the upcoming Summer Share Season!!

As you know, we’ve been busy the last few months!! Not only harvesting your winter veggies, but also seeding, transplanting and weeding all of your delicious food for the summer.  All we need now is some LOVE from our members in the form of sign ups : ) The Summer CSA starts mid-May, but early memberships help us get a jump on the season so help us out by signing up TODAY!!

You’ll find recipes for green garlic and everything else in your share, at Cook With What You Have. If you’re a CSA member, you will find your password in your most recent email. Enjoy 24/7 access to recipe inspiration!

This week your share may include…

  • Purple Sprouting Broccoli: Pretty purple heads are tasty and so are the leaves & stems. Roast them whole or chop up and sauté. They also make a fabulous pizza topping!
  • Carrots: Sweet winter carrots – yum!
  • Cauliflower: The chef’s we work with have been really enjoying this!! I was inspired by Navarre to roast the little ones whole – greens and all. Check out this photo! Or try this Cauliflower Pasta from Gino’s Restaurant.
  • Collard Greens: These would go really well in the cauliflower & green garlic fritatta in this weeks blogpost from Cook With What You Have.
  • Green Garlic: We plant an early variety, called Early Chinese Pink, in order to have nice plump garlic stalks for you this time of year. The garlic is planted in the fall, grows a vigorous root system through the winter, and pushes up its little green stalks in the spring. We’ll harvest the green garlic for a few months, until the plants start to bulb up and dry down. Similar to leeks – the white part is most tender, but the green tops have good garlic flavor too. Enjoy these little beauties while they last!
  • Leeks: I’m loving the leeks this time of year. Chop and sauté the tender white stem and add them to almost dish that calls for cooked onions. Add the darker tops to soup stock. Or go with a more traditional Potato Leek Soup or make a leek galette.
  • Red Potato: The potatoes are coming full circle! So happy to have these red potatoes for a little bit longer : ) We’ll be planting potatoes for the coming season soon and looking forward to new potatoes early in the Summer Share!
  • Radish Microgreens: These zesty little treats make a nice topping for soups, salad or sandwiches.
  • Variety Pack of Winter Squash: Tetsu, Oregon Homestead & Sibley maybe a few other kinds too.

Coming soon… Summer Share!

 

A spring Farm Report

Cultivating onions at 47th Ave Farm's Grand Island Farm – photo by Matt GiraudJust the other day, I was out with my draft horses – Dixie and Daisy – cultivating garlic on our Grand Island farm. The sun was in and out, but dry enough that the horses easily stayed on top of the field as my 1920s-era cultivator churned the soil and weeds under my feet. We went back and forth, back and forth, the simple mechanics of the cultivator keeping time, slowly weaving a thread of broken earth into the land.

That simple, uneventful pleasure is definitely not something I’d have been able to enjoy this time last year. As you may remember with the same shiver I do, last winter featured snow that wouldn’t go away, rain (and mud) well into the spring, and a lot of brrrrrrrrrrr!

In fact, we couldn’t even get onto the fields until April last year, setting our planting and harvesting schedules back. Or more accurately, we couldn’t start working the fields responsibly: laying a heavy tractor on muddy fields compacts the soil, squeezing out the oxygen that micro-organisms need to feed the plant and that plants need for a healthy immune system. You can’t have healthy produce without healthy soil, so despite the delays it would cause, we knew we’d want to wait out the mud and do things right. I’m glad we did, but it sure made us long for typical Oregon winters!

Like this year, which by comparison, has been mild and relatively dry. Yes, we had a little snow a last month, and for sure, the low snow pack may come back to haunt Oregon agriculture later, but for now, it makes harvesting easier.

…And we’re already out there planting for summer: Sugar snap peas, fava beans, delicate spring greens like spinach and lettuce. The greenhouse is full of baby plants and the drier weather means we’ll be planting our red tropea onions, spring carrots and early potatoes ahead of schedule! We’re definitely glad to have less mud, and happier plants than we did last year.

Meanwhile, I’ve finished the garlic. The sun pops out and warms my smiling face – and I aim the horses and the cultivator down the edge of the next field. What will this beautiful corner of the planet offer up next?

Let’s find out!

In Your Share (April 2nd, 2018)

By Laura

We’re excited about overwintering cauliflower!! It has been a great season for this challenging crop. We planted last summer, they didn’t freeze over the winter, and this mild spring has made for beautiful little – and soon to be large – heads of creamy white cauliflower goodness : )

Between the cauliflower we also have an incredible stand of interseeded triticale/vetch cover crop. This was part of a super successful cover crop trial done in partnership with OSU and it it providing weed suppression, fertility, and keeping our soil biology healthy & happy through the winter. If you are as excited about cover crop as we are, you are welcome to join us this coming Monday April 9th for a Cover Crop Field Day. See below for more info.

You’ll find recipes for cauliflower and everything else in your share, at Cook With What You Have. If you’re a CSA member, you will find your password in your most recent email. Enjoy 24/7 access to recipe inspiration!

This week your share may include…

  • Purple Sprouting Broccoli: Pretty purple heads are tasty and so are the leaves & stems. Roast them whole or chop up and sauté.
  • Carrots: Sweet winter carrots – yum!
  • Cauliflower: The chef’s we work with have been really enjoying this!! I was inspired by Navarre to roast the little ones whole – greens and all. Check out this photo! Or try this Cauliflower Pasta from Gino’s Restaurant.
  • Green Garlic: The first harvest of this season’s garlic planting is up and ready to go! We plant an early variety, called Early Chinese Pink, in order to have nice plump garlic stalks for you this time of year. The garlic is planted in the fall, grows a vigorous root system through the winter, and pushes up its little green stalks in the spring. We’ll harvest the green garlic for a few months, until the plants start to bulb up and dry down. Similar to leeks – the white part is most tender, but the green tops have good garlic flavor too. Enjoy these little beauties while they last!
  • Yellow Onions: Featured at Cook With What You Have this week is the unpronounceable, but super tasty Zwiebelkuchen (aka Onion Tart)
  • Leeks: I’m loving the leeks this time of year. Chop and sauté the tender white stem and add them to almost dish that calls for cooked onions. Add the darker tops to soup stock. Or go with a more traditional Potato Leek Soup or make a leek galette.
  • Radish Microgreens: These zesty little treats make a nice topping for soups, salad or sandwiches.
  • Variety Pack of Winter Squash: Oregon Homestead & Sibley maybe a few other kinds too.

Coming soon… Summer Share!

 

Cover Crop Field Tour

By Laura

We are really excited that our Grand Island farm is part of this… 

Field Tour Demonstrating a Variety of Interseeded Cover Crop in Conventional and Organic Row Crops

Monday, April, 9, 2018

Please RSVP ed.peachey@oregonstate.edu if you plan to join us lunch

Join us whenever you can at the times listed below…

Route and Schedule

  • 8:30   Koch Farms, 29350 South Cramer Rd, Molalla (45.181536, -122.620056) Common vetch in sweet corn
  • 9:45     Pearmine Farms, 12225 River Rd NE, Gervais (45.096471, -122.977039) Meet at the corner of Concomoly and River Rd. Rye and oats in processing squash
  • 11:15   47th Ave Farms, 18600 SE Lower Island Rd, Grand Island (45.127791, -123.037474) Triticale and common vetch in winter vegetables. Lunch provided here (Please RSVP ed.peachey@oregonstate.edu if you plan to join us lunch)
  • 1:45     Horning Farms, Old River Rd, Corvallis (44.382169, -123.284450) Winter wheat in conventional and direct seeded systems following sweet corn.
  • 2:50     OSU Vegetable Res. Farm, 34346 NE Electric Rd, Corvallis, (44.571485, -123.241370) Small grain cereals and legumes in sweet corn. Effects of interseeding time, planting method, corn variety and herbicides on cover crop establishment.