Monday, June 29, 2009

The Cornucopia Carrot Vol.3, Issue 8

"Warm" Greetings to all of you!

It has been a very hot week!  While we welcomed the drying that the warmth brought so that we could get at the weeds, it was also a challenge to work in such heat.  Most of our days started early so that we could take a break during the day when the sun was hottest.  We also recruited some extra helpers to help us with the weeding.  Tuesday my cousin and her daughter, in town visiting from Ohio, dropped by and volunteered their services as well - which we did not refuse :)  Thank you Rachelle and Elaine!  

On top of all this, it was a week of strawberry picking.  The strawberry season has been rather short-lived this year due to the heat that seemed to make everything ripen at once.  We probably could have picked every day last week, but in order to stay sane and save our backs, we managed to keep it to every other day.  The berries in your share this week will be the last this season.  I think that eleven days is a really short season, but I noticed that the beans are coming on, so it is a good thing that they are finished.

Recycle your green strawberry boxes back to us if you still have them - we would really appreciate it - as we have many uses for them throughout the season.  Thanks!

This is a week of standard vegetable favorites that we hope you will enjoy.

In your share this week......

Peas - Super Sugar Snax

Carrots - crisp and flavorful

Potatoes - Purple Viking - these have purple skin and white flesh.  We have enjoyed them this week mashed with skins on and also as "oven roasted fries".  Scrub your potatoes and cut in wedges.  Pat dry. Toss in olive oil to coat.  Arrange on a baking sheet.  Sprinkle with salt or seasoning salt.  Bake in oven 425F for about 45 minutes, or until tender.  The time may vary depending on how thick you cut your wedges.  Serve with ketchup or mayo.  We also like to roast carrots with the potatoes.

Broccoli - 

Onions - Super Star white onions are mild and sweet and the greens are still great to use too!

Strawberries - get out the ice cream or whip up some cream and enjoy this seasonal treat!

Full share will also include Garlic Scapes this week.  Try coating these with a little olive oil and grilling them.  Yum!  or... add these to your potatoes like chives.  

Have a great week!

Next week look forward to green beans and cauliflower

Monday, June 22, 2009

The Carrot Vol 3, Issue 7

Hello Everyone,

This is one of those weeks when we are very thankful for air conditioning. We are planning on an early start to our outside work tomorrow so that we can retreat indoors for the hottest part of the day. If you are able, it will be a good idea to pick up your box as early as possible to keep your things from getting overheated. We are excited to have our main cooler up and running. This allows us to bring the produce in and store it at 38 degrees, keeping it fresh for you.
Strawberries are ready. We will also have them available for sale at the farmstand. Let your friends know - they are delicious and with this heat they may not last long.

Some information to pass along that may be of interest to you....
1) We are including a flyer in your box about the upcoming NISO tour of gardens.
2)This evening we visited with the organizers of the Eat Well Food Tour. They are leading discussions on the connection between faith and food. They will be in Sioux Center at Children's Park Tuesday evening for a pot-luck. Check their web site for more details

In your basket this week.......

STRAWBERRIES!! - the rain of the past two weeks has produced some large, very nice tasty berries

Green Cabbage - make some cole slaw!

Head Lettuce -

Garlic Scapes - We are popping the tops from our garlic so that the plant will concentrate on developing the bulb. These scapes can be used the same way you use the stir fry, salads, make it into some pesto, soups, etc. Keep these loosely wrapped in the bag they come in, in your fridge and they will keep for several weeks, but I think you'll have them eaten in no time.

Half share will also have Beets this week

Whole share will also include...


Swiss Chard


Garlic Scape Pesto - Your share this week has about 1/2 # of scapes, so you will need to adjust the recipe accordingly. Also, the amount of olive oil you use will depend on whether or not you choose to use the nuts. Walnuts will also work well in place of the pine nuts.

My favorite thing to do with them is to make garlic scape pesto. It is super easy to make and refrigerates well for several weeks in a well sealed jar. I also plan on popping some into the freezer to top off my winter soups. I use this pesto on brushetta, pasta, eggs, foccacia, and just about anything I grill like shrimp, salmon, chicken. It’s also fabulous added to mayonnaise and smeared on a big roast beef sandwich. Now I’m hungry!!!

Garlic scape pesto
1 pound garlic scapes
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
Olive oil (about 1/2 to 1 cup)
Pine nuts if available
Chop the garlic scapes into 3 inch lengths. Put it int he food processor and process until pureed. Add the parmesan and pine nuts and process until smooth. Slowly add the olive oil as the food processor runs and continue until all the oil is combined into the garlic. Store in an air-tight jar in the refrigerator.

I copied the post above from this site....

Have a great week !

Monday, June 15, 2009

The Carrot Vol 3 Issue 6


The day began with a few clouds but by mid morning the harvesters had these yellow suits on! They were so easy to spot from a distance, I even used a rhyme, a yellow fruit that goes with Janna..., she turned the hose on me! Jessica generally wears shorts and flip flops. I have tried for 4 years to get her into a solid pair of socks and boots but she doesn't get it, even Jessica put on a yellow suit and rubber boots! Despite the rain we got a nice selection for your subscription.

kohlrabi - green this time. This is a great dipping veggie, but is also nice chopped and steamed with its leaves


radish-shunkyo semi long - with a wonderful crisp texture - try them sliced on a sandwich, mixed into some tuna, or with cream cheese on some crackers -the possibilities are endless....
Guess can also eat radish greens :) no kidding.

peas - still the variety with those great juicy edible pods.

onions - slice them, dice them, they are great with everything

lettuce - speckled - also called "flashy trout back"

Full shares may also include......

beets - Madeline made a wonderful lunch with the chopped green tops and some onions thrown in - all sauteed in some butter and tossed with angel hair pasta and topped with parmesan cheese.

napa cabbage - wonderful for some coleslaw with onions and radish chopped in or try it in a stir-fry with peas thrown in at the very end.

cilantro/parsley - your choice

We are very thankful for the rains of the past week. We talked to a college friend this morning. He farms near Platte, SD and said that this is the "weirdest spring weather" that he can remember. We have had to do some re-planting due to dry weather(seed didn't germinate) and hot wind that killed newly emerged seedlings leaving very uneven stands of some crops. The recent moisture is a real blessing - allowing seed to germinate and cloud cover gives new transplants the chance to get established without wilting in the hot sun. With the promise of warmer weather this weekend things should really "take off".

We hope that you have a wonderful week!

Monday, June 8, 2009

The Cornucopia Carrot Vol.3, Issue 5

Welcome to another week at the farm!

Rain this weekend has brought much needed moisture for which we are thankful.  We also welcome Elizabeth VanMaanen as a new employee.  She will be helping out several days each week and we are enjoying getting to know her better.  We feel like things are really moving forward and having extra help really makes a big difference.  We got a lot of weeding, mulching and transplanting done this week.   

Tomorrow you can expect to see one of our girls at the farm stand as we will be heading up to Minneapolis to pick up our oldest daughter, Allison, who is returning from choir tour in Europe.  

A Reminder:  please remember to return your box each week so that we don't run out. Thanks!

In your basket this week.......a number of firsts of the season....

Peas - We can never get enough of these delicious treats - once again, these are the variety with the sweet edible pod - string them and eat the whole thing!

Potatoes - First new potatoes of the season.  Either Yukon or Rose Gold varieties.  I like them best steamed until tender and served with a pat of butter.  

Leaf Lettuce - try this light dressing for a change... 4 Tbsp. olive oil, 2 Tbsp lemon juice,  1 Tbsp. honey, 1/2 Tbsp brown mustard.  Whisk together or shake it up in a small jar.  You may adjust the honey and mustard to your taste.  Also tastes good with some balsamic vinegar in place of some of the lemon juice.

Carrots! -  check out this site for some great ideas and information about this year round favorite.  You might even want to try some of the suggestions on using the greens of the carrot in soups, salads, etc.

Broccoli - (or trees as my kids used to call it :)  

Whole shares this week also include the following.....

Salad Turnips - white, crunchy and mild.  You'll like them raw for snacking or chopped up in your salad.  These are also tasty lightly steamed - and nothing goes to waste with the turnip - start the root part cooking and then toss in the green tops toward the end.  These will make a nice medley with the peas and carrots. 

Thursday, June 4, 2009

The tomato garden tomatoes are caged and mulched with chopped bean straw in the walk ways.


Super Sweet Sugar Snax Peas

Tunnel # 1 The lettuce is almost all gone, the tomatoes are staked and pruned to a leader and up the pole they grow!

Leaf Lettuce in the "center garden."

Onions in "pasture garden". The Sweet Peppers are in the five mulch rows to the right of the onions. We planted the pepper plants in the plastic mulch and then put bean straw mulch down between the plastic mulch rows after the picture was taken. By now you have noticed the drip tape for irrigating. We have used over 10,000 feet of 5/8's inch drip line so far this year and have more on order. We have watered more this last two weeks then most of last growing season. A one or two inch rain would actually be very good. In places where we haven't watered seed hasn't germinated because its too dry.

Garlic, stiff neck Garlic. Some have been harvested as garlic greens.

Green Beans in the front garden, only 22 rows about 50' long. We use chopped bean straw as a mulch to suppress weeds, hold in moisture but mostly to prevent dirt splash up againest the beans when we have those July thunder storms with big rain drops.

Cabbage in Tunnel # 2. It seems a little later than last year but making steady progress.

All the potatoes have been hilled. These are in the "pasture garden". The variety on the right are Red Norlands, an early red potato. We have a variety called Rose Gold in Tunnel # 2 that flowered two weeks ago and will be dug tomorrow and Monday. There is also a row of Yukon Gold in Tunnel #2 but they haven't flowered yet.

Beets in the "center garden" taken June 3.
This is Rowdie, Rosie's calf born back in late March. He is doing very well. Had a close call last week when got a halter on by himself, typical toddler, and it was stuck on a post. He pulled and pulled and nearly choked himself to death, I heard the commotion from elsewhere and got in the shed and cut him free but he still had the halter around his neck tight enough to prevent him from drinking. I had nieghbor Luke come over and rope him and he wrestled with him till he got the halter off.

This is Mindy, about 3 weeks younger than Rowdie, one of the nicest heifers I have had. Maxine has done a wonderful job with her and she has been trouble free!
These broilers are 2.5 weeks old, this is their second day on grass/pasture right next to the cows. I move the pens to fresh grass twice each day.

Monday, June 1, 2009

The Cornucopia Carrot Vol.3, Issue 4


It has been a busy, busy, busy day!  We did our picking in the cool of the morning and then spent most of the afternoon and early evening weeding and planting.  Last Wednesday we brought our first group of chickens for the season to the butcher and they needed to be picked up today.  Before he left for Hospers to pick them up, John, with Adrienne's help, moved the next group of chicks out of the brooder pen and into the chicken tractors.  These birds came back with an average size of 4.4# and look great!  Please contact us if you would like to place an order.  

This afternoon we also had a visit from some of the members of  the sustainable ag board from the Leopold Center at Iowa State.  We were also pleased to be able to supply the produce for their dinner on Tuesday at Dordt College.  On top of that all, it was a beautiful day for being outside and I even managed to get a walk in this evening.

Once again we thank you for your vote for local food by being a member of our CSA.  We thought that you might find the movie trailer at the link below interesting.

In your basket this week...........

PEAS!!!  Yes, peas are here and we are excited.  These are the Super Sugar Snax that everyone loves so much.  They have a juicy succulent pod that is edible, so all you need to do is string them and steam them....or you can just enjoy them raw.

Red Romaine - a twist on the standard romaine with a deep red color - very pretty.

Leaf Lettuce - This is a new stand of lettuce and a very nice mix of colors and shapes.

Radish - I've listed a recipe from  below for a new way to prepare radishes.  A friend from market told me about it and said that her children even asked for it again.  I'll be trying it this week too.  You could use those garlic greens - if you still have some, or I'm sure that green onions would substitute nicely too.  If you don't want to heat up the grill, you could also saute these.

Green onions - the flavor of these is, in our opinion, outstanding.  Try some cooked or in a salad.

Spinach - the green that just keeps on giving :)  We keep picking and it keeps producing - until it gets too hot outdoors of course.

Kohlrabi - full share will also receive purple kohlrabi this week.

Have a great week!

Grilled Radishes


"These are great matched with a simple grilled chicken breast. Use more or less garlic to taste."
Grilled Radishes Recipe




  • 20 ounces radishes, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 cube ice
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Preheat the grill for high heat.
  2. Place the radishes, garlic, butter, and ice cube on a double layer of aluminum foil large enough to wrap contents. Season with salt and pepper. Tightly seal foil around contents.
  3. Place foil packet on the grill, and cook 20 minutes, or until radishes are tender.