Week #23, 2019
- Sweet Peppers
- Hot peppers
- Stuffing peppers
- Cherry tomatoes ! Do not leave these summer treats, they will not be around forever, they hate the rain. They can be roasted and turned into the most delicious tomato soup ever!! See recipe below
- Winter squash
- Cucumbers or Zucchini
Well, it is fall.
How sudden the weather has shifted from hot as hell to cool, wet and light starved. We are losing 5 minutes a day and can reasonably work only until 7:30 before we need a flashlight. This is cutting into my farm time as I race home from work to transplant, harvest or cut flowers. We are getting prepared for the big farm events coming in the next few weeks. On Sunday, September 22, we are hosting the first ever Farm to Table fundraiser for PACSAC (Portland Area Coalition of CSA farmers). We are excited and daunted by the prospect of having 75 people dine at the farm (on the upper level of the barn!). We are hoping to expose people to what CSA farming has to offer and raise funds to help promote CSA in general in our region. Please share this link with friends and family and consider coming to the event!
On Sunday, October 6th we have our 20th Harvest Festival at La Finquita from 2-6 p.m. Please do plan on coming and bringing your family and friends. We will have the pizza oven fired up, the cider press ready to go and dancers and performers galore. Bring a dish to pass and your favorite pizza topping and join us for the fun.
As we prep for fall and winter we are clearing fields of potatoes and winter squash (well, the squash has yet to me harvested and that is a huge deal, but hopefully by the end of September). We are participating in a cover crop study and will be trialing different cover crops in different sections of the farm. We are excited to find ways to add nitrogen and nutrients without adding more phosphorus. We typically top dress our beds with compost that we make and this is great, but comes with extra nutrients we do not need. We are working with Nick Andrews from the OSU extension on this three year project.
We are clearing hoop houses of summer crops and planting them full of fall and winter favorites like radicchio, endive, lettuce, green onions, bok choi and arugula. We are battling pests that we have never had and trying to find biological pest control for these new and horrid invaders. It is hard to balance all that needs to happen on this farm! Harvests are huge with fruit as well as vegetables and many small picky items like beans and cherry tomatoes. We need our member helpers as much as ever to help get this bit or work done so we can be freed up to do the rest of the farm tasks.
Least you think this is it, there is the planet to save! It is time to strike for our world, we must wake up and take action or we will not have a place to live. The world climate strike is this friday September 20th and runs through September 27th. Please do join in the strike in any way that you can. Here is the link to events that are going on in the area. Join me on Friday in downtown Portland at 10:30. Please text me to coordinate location: 503-568-5760 if you are interested.
https://globalclimatestrike.net/ this site has logos, art ideas from real artists for bold signs. I will make some today and have a station set up in the barn if you want to make a sign!
Great Ideas for making your sign: https://vimeo.com/161333820
Here are recipes for this week, remember to nourish the ones you love. See you around the farm or on the streets!
Tomato Bisque ( Family Favorite)
Use fresh tomatoes1 to make a luscious creamy tomato soup2. It is quite easy to make and much more tasty than canned cream of tomato soup. If you are lucky enough to grow your own tomatoes or have a good farmer’s market nearby, you can easily freeze tomatoes without the fuss of canning, and they will also taste fresher than canned. Simply wash, pat dry, place whole tomatoes in a freezer zip-top bag, suck out the air with a straw, seal, and freeze. When you thaw them, the skins will slip right off, and they are ready to go.
· 3 Tablespoons butter (can use olive oil to make it dairy-free and vegan)
· 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
· 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour (I never add this)
· 2 cups water
· 4 pounds tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and cut into pieces (I use far less, often just tomato juice)
· 2 Tablespoons light brown sugar
· 6 whole cloves (I use ground cloves, this is key!)
· 1 teaspoon salt
· Freshly ground black pepper
· 1 cup medium or whipping cream (I never add this, I simply use the vitamix and it tastes like it has cream!0
Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the onion and toss to coat. Stir over medium heat until the onion is tender. Sprinkle on the flour and continue stirring over medium heat until the mixture foams. Stir in the water and bring to a boil.
Measure out 3/4 cup of the tomato3 pieces and set aside. Add the remaining tomato pieces to the boiling mixture. Stir in the brown sugar and cloves. Reduce the heat and cook, uncovered, at the gentle bubble for 30 minutes.
Transfer to a food mill and force through. Return to the saucepan and stir in the reserved tomato pieces. Blend in the salt, pepper, and cream. Place soup4 over medium heat and warm gently, but do not boil.
Yield: 6 servings
Tomato and Sweet Pepper Salad
adapted from The Vegetable Market Cookbook by Robert Budwig
3 sweet peppers
4 ripe tomatoes
1/4 preserved lemon (or 2 teaspoons grated zest with some of the lemon’s juice)
2 cloves garlic peeled and crushed pinch sweet paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 t black pepper
Grill or roast peppers, remove skins, cut into small cubes and set aside. Blanch tomatoes for 15-20 seconds in boiling water. Drain and remove skins and stems. Cut in half and remove seeds. Cut into small cubes. Rinse the preserved lemon under running water and remove the pulp. Cut the rind into fine dice. Arrange peppers, tomatoes and lemon in a dish. Mix remaining ingredients to make a dressing and pour over the salad. Mix well
Toro Bravo’s Radicchio Salad
- 2 to 3 heads radicchio
- 1/4 cup good-quality balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup good-quality sherry vinegar
- 1 red onion, chopped
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 3/4 cup olive oil
- 1 + 1/2 cups Manchego, grated and divided
In a large bowl, add the balsamic vinegar, sherry vinegar, and chopped red onion (I used 1/2 of a large red onion). Let it sit for 1 hour and then strain out the onions. (you can keep the pickled onions for another dish if you like)
Remove core from the radicchio and chop into 1-inch pieces. Place the chopped radicchio in a large bowl, fill with cold water and some ice cubes. Let it sit for 15 minutes to remove some of its bitterness, strain and then spin in a salad spinner until dry.
Add the honey and olive oil to the strained vinegars and whisk well, I use this stick blender which works great. Depending on the size of your radicchio you may not need all the dressing.
Toss the radicchio with the dressing until evenly coated. Add 1 cup of finely grated Manchego, salt, and toss again.
To serve, top the salad in a serving bowl with the remaining 1/2 cup grated Manchego. Serves 4-8.
Cherry Tomato and Olive Relish from Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered if large
1 or 2 yellow or other tomatoes, seeded and finely diced
24 nicoise olives, pitted and halved (I use the already pitted kalamata from trader joes, I chop them roughly for this recipe)
1 tablespoon capers, rinsed
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
5 basil leaves, thinly sliced
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
fresh lemon juice to taste
salt and pepper
Put the tomatoes in a bowl with the olives, capers, and herbs. Moisten with the oil, then season to taste with the S & P & lemon juice. Serve right away, or at least within the hour of making it.
Marinated Cherry Tomatoes 4 servings
2 baskets Cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1 small onion, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup Finely chopped parsley
1 Tablespoon Finely chopped rosemary
3 Garlic cloves, minced
1/3 cup Extra-virgin olive oil
3 Tablespoons Balsamic vinegar
Salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste
Mix tomatoes, onions, parsley, rosemary, garlic, olive oil and vinegar in a shallow bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Cover the bowl and let tomatoes marinate at room temperature at least 1 hour, but preferably 3 to 4 hours or overnight. Stir occasionally. Enjoy with crostini or as a side dish.
Cherry Tomato & Avocado Salad
1 basket cherry tomatoes, halved
2 Tablespoons chopped scallion or other mild onion
1 cup (approx.) chopped avocado
optional vinaigrette to coat (whirl 2 T lemon juice or vinegar, 1 small clove garlic, 1 t mustard, pinch salt and pepper, with 1/2 cup olive oil in blender.) Gently mix all ingredients. Serve. (The avocado is optional but delicious)
My favorite eggplant (M. Henny’s):
Slice lengthwise, score lightly and place skinside down in gratin pan. Drizzle w/EVOO and then sprinkle with 3 Tbs or so of chopped fresh herbs—can be all basil, or mix w/thyme/oregano/rosemary. salt & pepper to taste. Cover with light layer (1/4 c) freshly grated Parmesan. Slice whole tomatoes in half around the waist, and place skin side up on top of eggplant. Scatter a bit more cheese on top, drizzle w/EVOO and bake at 400 until tomatoes are almost blackened—usually 30-40 minutes. Serve as side or with good bread to mop up juice. Great cold on good bread as a sandwich.