This was a forage week for us. We like to keep our eyes out on the fields and hedgerows to spy what we might be able to bring you that's growing wild in our neighborhood. We started too late this year for nettles and watercress, unfortunately, but we are having a banner year for Elderberry Blossoms! They are the pretty bouquet at the top of your box. Put them in a vase in a cool room in your house and try to use them in the amazing Elderberry Flower Fritter recipe we've posted at the Recipe Blog. We had them for crew lunch today and they were a tremendous hit. Such a fleeting lovely treat.
Everything else is a bit more recognizable as food - lots of terrific greens, the first kale and YIPPEE! snap and snow peas! Enjoy. Remember, you want to try to eat the first things listed first, as they are the most perishable.
A NOTE ABOUT YOUR BOXES: you will be returning boxes to us this week, both at the farm and at Fat Cat. In both cases, fold flat and tuck the plastic liner into the flattened box. You can arrange them neatly behind a planter at Fat Cat, or take them into John at the counter when you get your cappuccino. In the barn cooler, just follow the signs. Those of you with egg shares, we'd like to have those cute cartons back, too.
Elderberry Flowers - A wonderful treat fried up with a lightly sauteed tempura batter. See our recipe on the Recipe Blog page or lots of other ones at the Farmer Kriss Pinterest Page.
Strawberries and Mulberries - So delightful to have enough mullberries to pack for you. We very much enjoy shaking the trees to harvest these off sheets on the ground. Beats the bending over that must be done to get those strawberries.
Nasturtium Salad - We are calling this Nasturtium Salad because in addition to lettuce, spinach, and sorrel leaves, we've also packed nasturtium leaves in here. Though mostly grown for ornamental purposes here in the US, nasturtium leaves are grown for salad greens in South America and it's easy to taste why. They are lightly peppery and delicious, in addition to being very pretty.
Nasturtium Flowers - We kept the flowers out of your salad this week, so that you can use them other ways. Garnish a soup, fill with a cream cheese dip and serve as an appetizer, or throw on top of that salad after all.
Lemon Balm - This wonderful fresh herb we've bunched for you is a terrific addition to tea, baked goods and is absolutely awesome in salad dressing. Try this recipe for dressing, or try the wonderful Lemon Balm Pound Cake we made for the Lambs and Lettuces Festival.
Arugula - Buggy, yes. By that I mean that the flea beetles do love this stuff as much as I do! But there are no bug on there now, so enjoy! We love arugula mixed with salad, we love it topping a pizza, we love it wrapped in proscuitto and speared with an olive, we love it lightly sauteed in olive oil and garlic scapes and tossed with pasta.
Garlic Scapes - These curly little friends on the top of your box are the flower head of the fall garlic we are growing. Use them just like scallions, only they taste like mild garlic! One of the most fun crops of the year until the kohlrabi comes in.
Dill and Thyme - So many great uses for these fresh herbs. We hope to give you more as the season progresses. This is just a trim to keep the plants producing. The ferny stuff is dill - great on eggs, fish, goat cheese. The small purple flowered stalks are thyme and we use it cit with a scissor into absolutely everything. Wonderful in soups. Essential!
Snap and Snow Peas - Yay! Who doesn't love pea season!!!!??? We have eaten so many in the field we are sick some days! This is an every-day picker for us. They just keep coming and coming wonderfully. Zip the strips of tough fiber from the sides by snapping the little stem hat and zipping downward. Eat raw dipped in a Thai peanut sauce or Yogurt Ranch Dressing, or sautee lightly and they'll get even sweeter, if possible!
Kale - First kale of the year so tender and sweet, I recommend slicing into ribbons and adding it to your salad. But we are happy for you to cook it lightly with those garlic scapes, too. Great in soup. Zip the sturdy stalk from the middle of the leave and eat it like celery dipped in ranch or goat cheese.
Rhubarb - More! If you didn't get to try every Pinterest recipe you wanted to, now is your chance!
Basil to Plant - We'll be packing basil soon, but we want you tino have a TON of it, because that's how we are with herbs:) Plant it in a big container and pinch back (by that I mean use some leaves) regularly, and you will have a bushy herb fountain all season until frost.