16th Harvest Week: Wed/Thurs Delivery September 28th & 29th, 2011
Farmer John Writes…
Greetings from Angelic Organics!
Vegetable of the Week: Celeriac
From the Introduction to Celeriac in our cookbook, pg 270: Imagine walking through a modern grocery store, its produce section brimming with beauty-queen vegetables: colorful, shiny, perfect. Then imagine a celeriac in their midst. It doesn’t quite fit, does it? In the days before vegetables’ looks outweighed their other qualities, celeriac—also known as celery root—enjoyed much more popularity than it does today. The wizened roots store for months in a root cellar; this was a distinct advantage if you lived in a sod house on the prairie.
Celeriac is a vegetable that cleans up well. Once you peel away its gnarled outer layer, you find a sparkling-white interior with a clean, refreshing taste that has wide appeal. Once prepared, it shows no signs of its humble past. Celeriac served with wild rice, celery, and parsley is as sophisticated an autumn dish as one could ask for.
Try the Scalloped Celeriac and Potatoes recipe on pg 271. The celeriac adds a brightness here that assertively sets the dish apart from its classic cousin.
From A Shareholder:
So far the boxes have been exceptional this year. I grew up very close to the Angelic farm, and I’m always amazed at how the food tastes like home. The onions, especially, really bring me back to my childhood.
Thanks for all of your hard work.
From our web page: Local means settlers here smelled the smoke from the Great Chicago Fire. Our farm is a 2-hour drive northwest of Chicago, a ½ hour drive north of Rockford.
This week the ground has turned to mud. Soon, hard frosts will arrive while we sleep. These days, we concentrate on bringing frost sensitive crops in, notably the winter squash. Last week we harvested potatoes, carrots and parsnips, while they still lifted easily out of the dry ground. We now have many bins of vegetables in storage. Perhaps they are dreaming of recipes in which to star.
From A Shareholder:
Thank you for forcing our family to get familiar with winter squashes. I never knew what to do with them other than to cook them in the oven and eat them with tons of butter and some salt. We tried your recipe for squash stuffed with cooked kale and pear – what a delicacy, this has become our family’s regular dish.
Vegetables for Later
Many of our shareholders have told us that they grieve the annual passing of our delivery season. Long-term vegetable storage will help you prolong the season. Consult the Vegetable Storage Guide in your Cookbook Appendix, starting on pg 339. It includes tips for short and long term storage. The guide is also on our web site: https://angelicorganics.com/Vegetables/vegetablescontent.php?contentfile=vegstorage
Also, here are excerpts about vegetable storage from the recent Local Harvest Newsletter: http://www.localharvest.org/newsletter/20110923/
Stocking up in the late summer and fall extends the buy-local produce season. Garlic, onions, potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash, apples, beets, carrots and other root crops all store easily and well for weeks or months in the basement, garage or frig, depending on the crop and your local climate.
The very best book I’ve seen on keeping food is called Root Cellaring: Natural Cold Storage of Fruits and Vegetables. Filled with photos, line drawings, and stories, it is a great, fun resource to have around if you’re even considering expanding your food preservation options.
Thanks to those of you who attended the Cookbook Signing & Dinner in Woodstock this past Saturday: A Benefit for the Learning Center’s Save the 70 Campaign. There was a great turnout for both the signing and the dinner. It was a lot of fun and a great success!
Upcoming Programs at the Angelic Organics Learning Center
Biodynamics for the Backyard, October 1, 9 am to 5 pm Note from Farmer John about this workshop: it will be presented by Ben Wilson, our on-farm Biodynamic practitioner. Ben will offer a sensible, articulate and inspiring presentation on Biodynamics for the Backyard. You will love learning from Ben about Biodynamics, which is an integral part of our approach to farming at Angelic Organics. Check out Angelic Organics in the Process of Becoming Biodynamic on pg 32 in our cookbook.
Cheesemaking, October 8th, 1:30 to 4:30 pm This hands-on workshop in our farm setting will introduce the process of cheese making from start to finish (from milking the goats to tasting fresh goat’s cheese). We’ll learn how to make ricotta, chevre, mozzarella, feta and more!
Farm Dreams, October 16 Have you ever dreamed of starting your own farm? In this interactive workshop, we’ll learn about types of sustainable farming careers in northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin, take part in a series of self-assessments, and be better prepared to decide whether to pursue a farming business…
Please register at least 1 week in advance at www.learngrowconnect.org or (815) 389-8455.
The following takes you to the Learning Center calendar, which has links to all of their programs:
Please Note: this summary is written before you receive your box—please be aware that some guesswork is involved. As always, be sure to thoroughly wash all of your vegetables.
Herbs –Lemon Balm
Fruiting Crops – Pie pumpkin
Brassicas – Broccoli or Cauliflower
Alliums – an Onion
Cooking Greens – Kale, baby Swiss Chard
Salad Greens –Lettuce, Spinach, Arugula
Root Crops – Celeriac, Radishes, 5# of potatoes -All Blue, French Fingerling, & a 3rd variety that varies by box
We are very excited about receiving celeriac! We learned about this wonderful root veg in France, and now we regularly make a potato-celeriac puree for Thanksgiving. We are new shareholders as of this year–I wish we had found the farm sooner. Since joining, we are eating more veggies, less meat, and shopping much more from the local farmer’s market. We did not anticipate these changes in our food routines, but we welcome them. Yours are the very best vegetables we have ever had; you can taste the soil in them, like one tastes the “terroir” in a fine wine. And our daughter is learning that food comes from soil, not the grocery store. What a gift. Thank you all.