Welcome to the Fall 2022 CSA season! The crops are looking good and although we have had some struggles in the last few months (where’s the okra? Well the deer are still eating it.), most of the late summer crops are very strong with a bumper crop of long beans (deer stopped eating them), loads of tomatoes, and some healthy enormous eggplant and pepper plants. The fall crops are looking pretty healthy even though it has been warm and humid for a lot of the past few months. Compared to last year when we lost tons of our brassicas crops to heat, disease, and pests and had to replant carrots three times, our fall diversity seems in a great place. We still have intense worm and early aphid pressure and with the week of rain a few weeks back the weeds are really trying their best to take hold; but our management up to this point seems to be keeping the crops healthy. This is good news! Before we know it the cooking and eating greens will abound. Chicories, collards, and broccoli raab will get some sweetness from the cold nights and be at perfection and the wide diversity of fall roots will be available. We did lose our parsnip crop again this Spring, so none of that unfortunately; but the winter squash is currently curing, fennel is looking strong, herbs are beginning to grow, our polenta corn looks like it might have a little something that is harvestable and on and on. Point being there should be plenty of food. Thanks for being here for the ride. Check out the recipes below and enjoy the share….Brian and Autumn
Green Beans in Tomato Sauce – The New Book of Middle Eastern Cooking by Claudia Roden
1/2 onion, coarsely chopped
2 Tbls olive oil
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
½ lb ripe tomatoes, chopped
½ lb green beans, topped and talied and cut into 2-3 pieces
salt and pepper
1/2 tsp sugar
juice of ¼ lemon
Fry the onion in oil till soft and golden. Add the garlic, and when the aroma arises, add the tomatoes and beans. Season with salt, pepper, and sugar, add water as necessary to cover the beans, and lemon juice, simmering 15-20 minutes, or until the beans are tender and the sauce reduced a little.
Eggplant in a Spicy Honey Sauce –The New Book of Middle Eastern Food by Claudia Roden
The sauce is a splendid example of the hot, spicy, and sweet combinations; which are a thrilling feature of North African cooking. Serve it cold with bread.
2 medium-large eggplants
3 cloves garlic, crushed
2 inches fresh gingerroot, grated, or cut into pieces
1 ½ tsp ground cumin
large pinch cayenne or ground chili pepper, to taste
4-6 Tbls honey
juice of 1 lemon
2/3 cup water
Cut the eggplants into rounds about 1/3” thick. Do not peel them. Dip them in olive oil, turning them over, and cook on a griddle or under a broiler, turning them over once, until they are lightly browned. They do not need to be soft, as they will cook further in the sauce. In a wide saucepan or skillet, fry the garlic in 2 Tbls of the oil for seconds only, stirring, then take off the heat. Add the ginger, cumin, and cayenne or gorund chili pepper, honey, lemon juice, and water. Put in the eggplant slices and cook over low heat –either in batches, so they are in one layer, or together, rearranging them so that each slice gets some time in the sauce –for about 10 minutes, or until the slices are soft and have absorbed the sauce. Add a little water if necessary.