Week 16 Newsletter
Week 17 has come! Can you believe it?!? It’s like we’ve been through nearly a whole season of vegetable ups and downs, greens and reds, sweets and spicys, advantages and challenges. And there’s still more out there waiting for us! How exciting is that?!?
Even though we seem to be in an unseasonable heat wave – to act in complement to our unseasonable polar vortices in July – fall vegetables are coming on strong enough to feed all five hundred of yous. There’s also some totally sweet hangers-on from summertime: green beans and sweet corn, peppers, melon, and a tomato on the Family Share. They’re all posers trying to be on the shares like the cool kids. Peppers are all, “Hey man, what’s up? I’m totally supposed to be here,” while coolly flipping the hair out their face. To be fair, September doesn’t usually discriminate. September’s not a mean girl. September is inclusive. September still hangs on to warm temps and what we think of as summer fixings. It’s October you’ve got to watch out for. October is a thief of summer dreams.
The most seasonal item that September and October bring us is of course the amazingly nutritious and delicious winter squash. In fact, for weeks it’s almost all I’ve been talking about. But this week we have a pie pumpkin. Which you can just stick on your shelf and call a Halloween decoration, or else you can make some pumpkin soup and serve it up right inside the shell. Now that is something special. You can also roast its seeds with a little salt and munch on those. They’re a heart-healthy snack fit for watching television at the end of long days or crunching on during rush hour, holding in all your road rage.
The other orange thing we’ve been seeing a lot of is sweet potatoes. They’re kinda skinny and awkward and maybe you’re not quite sure what to do with them. Boy howdy do I have a couple of guaranteed crowd-pleasers for you! First off is the simplest: the classic sweet potato fry. Back when sweet potato fries first started making appearances in freezer sections and on restaurant menus, I gave them a try as a healthier alternative to the standard russet potato fare. I was sorely disappointed. They were mushy or else heavily coated in some weird nonsense. I decided regular French fries were just fine. Then, during a visit, my littlest sister told me what to do with all the City Fresh sweet potatoes I’d accumulated.
First, you scrub then chop them into fry shapes – this is the hardest part. Chopping vegetables can be time consuming. Invest in a good knife. Next, get out a cookie sheet and lay all your fries on there. Then coat them lightly with some olive oil. Using your hands to evenly spread it works best. Now here’s where the real trick comes in – sprinkle the fries with sea salt and dried rosemary. The rosemary is the key ingredient. It transforms sad mushy fry imposters into something wholly different and amazing. Bake at 350˚ for 20 minutes or so (it’s not really a recipe, so I don’t know – it depends on your crunchiness preference). Enjoy!
Come to think of it, my littlest sister is actually some kind of genius. I forgot, but this second recipe is hers too. I don’t know where she came up with all of this, but has she got the sweet potato recipe hook-up! So the other thing you do is take:
2 tablespoons of coconut oil
Heat this in a skillet on medium. Add:
Some sweet potatoes peeled and cut small
Minced garlic (to taste)
Heat for a few minutes, stirring, until beginning to soften. Add:
Some cooked black beans – you can do, like a half cup to a cup of dried and cook your own, or use a can of pre-cooked, either way is fine
When everything is softened and heated through, smoosh it all together and serve in a tortilla (corn or flour, whatever your preference) with some pepper jack or cheddar cheese. I prefer to put the black bean and sweet potato mix in with cheese between two flour tortillas to make quesadillas. My whole family adores this recipe. Primarily because it tastes really good.
Check out what else we have for you this week! As always, share contents are subject to change day-to-day, stop-to-stop*.
Broccoli or Cabbage
Broccoli or Cabbage
Patty Pan Squash
Peace and veggies,
Anna Kiss Mauser-Martinez
*Q: Why do the share contents change, anyway?
A: Because we serve so many shareholders, as it turns out, our farmers don’t always have enough of each vegetable fresh enough to make up the complete shares all week. They will generally have a lot of some things though, so we are able to parse together a comparable item (or comparably priced item) on shares at different stops. Similarly, sometimes the list you get may be missing an item at the stop because of availability issues affected by weather and pricing. The opposite is also true: sometimes we can get an extra item or two because of leftover room in the budget or an abundant harvest. Because we are so low-tech (and low cost), we cannot usually predict these changes prior to delivery.