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Posted 8/14/2018 4:13am by Jenna Untiedt.

Summer is here in full swing and the thought of fall is right around the corner. Days are full as we all are trying to fit in every last summer activity before school starts back up or the fall temperatures begin to arrive. Trips to the cabin, days on the lake, afternoons at the pool, bbqs with family and friends are all starting to fill our last days of August. It is a little scary to think that the MN State Fair starts next week. Where did summer go? Even with the thought of Fall right around the corner, there is plenty of summer left in terms of vegetables. Let’s break down what is in the share this week and what you can do with it all:  

Sweet Corn: Absolutely fantastic flavor. What is summer without sweet corn for dinner at least once a week for dinner? Or more like 3 or 4 nights a week in the Untiedt household. Even if you can’t get to eating all the corn each week, you can cook it, cut it off the cob and freeze it for use in the winter. Frozen corn is great to add to soups, stews, or stir frys in the dead of the winter when sweet corn is nonexistent.

Baby Bok Choy: A new vegetable for many of you, but don’t be afraid. Bok choy is a very tender green that has an extremely mild flavor. I enjoyed the bok choy in a stir fry with mushrooms last night for dinner and it was delicious. Simply wash well, cut the end off about an inch up from the bottom and break away all the leaves. Sautee mushrooms in a pan with some sesame oil, garlic and ginger. Once the mushrooms are soft, add the bok choy leaves along with a tbsp or two of soy sauce and cook until leaves are wilted an soft- about 4 minutes. Great side dish to any meal!

Romano Beans: I don’t like to share these beans when I make them. I prefer to eat them as a meal by themselves and maybe save some for lunch the next day. Whether boiled or sautéed, these have fantastic flavor. Add the shallots and garlic in and you have a restaurant level side dish.

Watermelon: As always, we cannot see inside the melon. If we could, it would be absolutely AMAZING, but we can’t. If it is less than satisfactory, let me know and we will definitely get it replaced next week. Slice in half and eat directly from the shell, or slice into pieces and enjoy throughout the week. These definitely do not last long in my household.

Grape Tomatoes: The ultimate grab and go snack, salad topper, or salad ingredient of their own. If you find yourself backed up on tomatoes from your share or garden, simply throw them in a pot and cook them down to sauce for use later in the season. A little work now goes a long, long ways. Yes, grape tomatoes work as well for sauce making!

Slicing Tomatoes: The weekly BLT sandwich is happening for sure at my house. These past few weeks have been a bit crazy, so I do have a couple of soft tomatoes on my counter-definitely not bad, but not ideal of sandwiches. I will dice them up, throw them in a pot and cook down into a reduced sauce and put into a container for use in chili or hot dishes this winter. A tip: Premeasure how much is in each container you do! It makes it WAY easier come time to use the freezer items.

Zucchini: I made a SUPER easy Unstuffed Pepper hot dish last night that will last my parents all week. The recipe only called for green peppers and onions, but I snuck in both zucchini from the share as well-a great way to get extra vegetables. If hot dish isn’t your jam, try making some zucchini noodles or just slicing the zucchini in half and grilling them. Peppers: So many uses, but one way to use both in one setting is to make the Unstuffed Pepper Recipe I made last night. It is versatile and super easy! Find the recipe here: https://www.rachelcooks.com/2015/11/02/healthy-stuffed-pepper-casserole/   You can even add zucchini and fresh chunks of tomato to make the recipe even better! Give it a try and let us know what you think.  

Onions: Well, the yellow onion can be put into the pepper hot dish! Otherwise, the perfect burger topper or addition to any stir fry for the week. As for the red onion, I am going to try and pickle mine. I follow a ton of food and wellness bloggers on Instagram and pickled red onions are the new thing they are all trying. So, I’m going to try as well so I can enjoy later in the week with my roasted beets!

Beets: Red and Golden for your enjoyment. They may be a bit soft due to the heat, but they are 100% edible and perfectly fine. Personally, I think that roasting them is the way to go. You can then eat them plain or add to a salad. A great grab and go snack for me.  

Strawberries: I am not sure I need to give you ideas on what to do with these as they are usually gone within minutes of getting home. I do recommend eating them within the first 24 hours as they don’t have great shelf life. Enjoy MN berries while you can!  

There you go, week number 9. We are over half way through the season, but honestly, I think the best is yet to come. We are getting to the weeks of the season where there are true arguments in our office about what actually gets to go in the share. Sometimes the box is just too small, but we will make sure you all enjoy the bounty of MN produce that is yet to come.

As a shameless plug, today is Primary Day in Minnesota. Get out and vote! I work on a campaign in my ‘free’ time, so this political season has been interesting to watch unfold. No matter what your views are, it is extremely important to exercise our right to vote.

Have a great week and enjoy your share!

Posted 8/7/2018 4:10am by Jenna Untiedt.

Week 8 is here. Almost half way through the CSA season, but in a personal opinion, the best is yet to come. More variety, more items to choose from each week, and even more desire to enjoy fresh and local produce as we realize what seasons are just around the corner. August brings us the first of locally grown apples, the best sweet corn of the season, and typically more tomatoes than the average human knows what to do with. I have already had my first request for fall pricing guides and I can’t wrap my head around that quite yet. Before we know it, our parking lot will transformed into a holding ground for bins of pumpkins, squash, gourds and all things fall. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves though, let’s enjoy what is left of the great Minnesota summer!  

There is lots to do with the share this week, let’s break it down:  

Sweet Corn: I think a weekly staple in any house throughout the summer should be burgers and sweet corn. Back to bi-color this week, and you won’t be disappointed. Please remember, if you do not eat it right away, don’t husk it, keep it in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. I never recommend keeping the corn more than 2-3 days, but that’s a strong personal preference. The fresher the better. If I have to recommend one thing to eat right away, it would always be the sweet corn.  

Romano Beans & Shallots: The best of the best. Yes, they do have a bit of sand and dirt on them, but a good rinse in the sink will get the grit off of the beans. A bit different than your typical green beans, but even more flavor. A special offering in our CSA, so enjoy them while they are here. My favorite way to enjoy these would be sauté all the shallots in a bit of butter until crisp and remove from the pan. Add the Romano beans and sauté  or steam until tender. Add the shallots back in for a few minutes and you have an outstanding side dish. I made these last night, and since the ‘rents are out of town for a couple days, I ate almost the entire batch. No shame, they are amazing and I didn’t make much else for dinner!  

Kale: Salads, smoothies, chips, stir fries, the opportunities are endless. If you really aren’t a fan of this great vegetable, I recommend slicing it up really finely and adding it to a pasta sauce. It is a great way to get in extra veggies without noticing much added flavor.  

Onions: A sautéed onion and kale would make a great side dish this week. Otherwise, these will keep for quite some time. If you don’t want the onion aroma taking over your fridge, toss in a bag and store in your crisper drawer, they will last for several weeks.  

Slicing Tomatoes: Perfect for sandwiches, burgers, or just plain. Let the tomatoes sit on your counter for a day or two until the are soft to the touch. We don’t like to send them too ripe, otherwise we get lots of complaints that they get bruised in transportation. Give the yellow, low acid tomatoes a try as well!  

Medley Grape Tomatoes: A fresh tomato salad is in order this week. Simple slice and toss with a bit of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, a dash of salt and pepper, add some fresh basil and mozzarella cheese and you have the perfect summer salad.

Green Peppers: The flavor and the aroma are outstanding. Stuffed peppers, afternoon snacks, the perfect burger topping….opportunities are endless.  

Cucumbers: Just a couple to enjoy throughout the week. Scroll to the bottom of the email for a special recipe including cucumbers, eggplant, medley tomatoes and kale…a dish you won’t want to miss out on this week!  

Potatoes: Simply the best. My favorite thing to do is to boil them all up right away. I may only eat a couple a night, but the fact they are cooked in the fridge and I can grab and go is great. Crispy smashed potatoes are probably my favorite and will likely be had for breakfast in a few hours after the shares get out this morning.  

Eggplant: Oh the poor vegetable that receives the absolute most criticism. I challenge you all to give this eggplant a try. An extremely mild flavor that can be enjoy in so many ways. I am enclosing a fairly straightforward, easy recipe to use up the eggplant in one meal. Personally, I found this Japanese eggplant to be much more tender than traditional eggplant and have a great flavor and texture. Step outside your comfort zone and give it a try this week.  

Chives: I’m not going to lie, I am not a good herb gardener. Perhaps it is because I never get them actually planted. I like to keep mine in the kitchen where they receive some natural light and use them for a few weeks and then toss. Chives are great to add to eggs, potatoes, meat, really anything. Even if your garden is full, you will definitely get a few uses out of the fresh ones and they will grow for a couple weeks in the small pot.  

Strawberries: Honestly, I think these are the best of the season. If they make it past the ride home for you, share with your family. Slice and serve over ice cream, top your yogurt with them, or just eat plain. These are truly and treat and absolutely delicious.  

There you have it, week number 8 is in the books. Lots of things you can do with the items this week, and these are just a few ideas. Challenge yourself to try a new recipe this week. While I didn’t make my normal Monday night spread, I did come up with a recipe for Eggplant so you all can easily enjoy it. Personally, I thought it was delicious and look forward to making it again later in the week.

  Eggplant, Tomatoes, and Crispy Kale Medley

-3 pieces of kale torn up into pieces, rubbed with olive oil

-4 Japanese eggplant, sliced into ¼ inch pieces and quartered, tossed in olive oil

-1 cup plain Greek yogurt

-2 tsp minced garlic -3 tbsp lemon juice

-1 cup sliced medley tomatoes

-1 cucumber peeled and diced into small pieces -salt and pepper  

Roast eggplant at 425 degrees, tossing occasionally until a nice dark color and tender to the touch.  

When the eggplant is about done, add kale to the oven and roast until crispy. Make sure to keep tossing as it will easily burn.  

While the eggplant is roasting, mix the yogurt, garlic, lemon juice and a dash of salt and pepper together. Spread the yogurt mixture into a light layer over a large dinner plate.  

Sprinkle the diced cucumbers over the yogurt. Followed by the roasted eggplant, medley tomatoes, and finally tuck the pieces of kale in the mixture. A light, summery side dish or main meal that is easy to make and definitely east to enjoy.  

Enjoy!

-Jenna

Posted 7/31/2018 4:05am by Jenna Untiedt.

Here we go, week 7. As I write this at 3:30 in the morning, I am holding my eyes open with toothpicks. My Monday night was thrown off by having to attend a gubernatorial forum. Doing my civic duty by educating myself is important, but not getting home until 10pm is pretty hard when the alarm goes off at 2:15am on CSA days. Anyways, here we are with a great share and I will soon have some coffee running through my veins  to help me make it through the day.  

I am not going to lie to you all, but I haven’t cooked anything from the box yet. Because of the forum last night, I wasn’t able to cook, but I look forward to cooking everything in the box this week with you all. As always, if you are feeling stumped and don’t know what to do with your share contents, simply google some recipes. Recipes don’t need to be fancy. Heck, 99% of the time recipes in my house are not fancy, but they even the most simple way of cooking these vegetables make delicious meals.  

Let’s take a look at the box:  

Sweet Corn: An all yellow variety that we only grow for you, our CSA members.  A delicious treat with burgers or brats on the grill this week. As always, please remember to store in the refrigerator, and if possible store no longer than 2 days. The fresher the better!  

Green Beans & Shallots: One of my absolute favorite meals, and yes, this the meal itself. Simply sautee the shallots in some butter and remove from pan when golden brown. Add the green beans to the pan and cook until tender, add shallots back in and there you have it. One of the most simple side-dishes or meals!  

Zucchini: Bread, muffins, stir fry, the opportunities are endless. I prefer to slice into about ¼ inch pieces, toss in some olive oil and fresh herbs and roast. Yum!  

Green Peppers: Take a moment and just smell the peppers, they smell amazing. Every time peppers are being washed at the farm, the aroma carries itself to our office. A strange smell you may think, but definitely one of summertime. Add these to anything you are cooking, they make a great flavor enhancer.  

Onions: You truly have everything you need right here for a great stir-fry. Onions, peppers, zucchini, carrots, beans….what more could you want or need? These are a mild onion, so they make a great addition to any meal.  

Jalapenos & Tomatillos: Great green salsa right here. Don’t let the tomatillos stress you out. They are super easy to cook, simply husk and boil. Toss into a blender along with the amount of spice you like from the jalapenos and there you have a green salsa.  

Carrots: These don’t last long in my house. I peel them as soon as I get them home and they are the perfect snack for anytime of day.  

Potatoes: I can’t wait to boil up a batch of these. Freshly dug, homegrown potatoes are one of the best things ever. Top with a bit of butter and fresh thyme and you have a complete meal. I see a lot of vegetarian meals in my future this week. Have leftover potatoes from the night before? Try warming them up a bit, smashing with a fork, and frying in a pan….crispy potatoes are great too!  

Watermelon: The one thing I have tried from the shares this week is the watermelon. We taste test so many melons to make sure that we are sending out good ones, and these definitely passed the test this week. Remember, we do not have x-ray vision and we never send a bad melon out on purpose. Should you receive a melon that is less than perfect, let us know and we will fix it.  

Strawberries: I'm not sure you need ideas for the berries, as they are likely to be gone before you even get home. If they make it past Tuesday night, you have great will-power!

There you have it, week number 7. Lots of great produce awaits you and your culinary skills this week. Enjoy! Now, I’m off to find some coffee.  

Until next week-  

Jenna

Posted 7/24/2018 3:59am by Jenna Untiedt.

Another week is here, and there is even more to do with the share than last week. In less than two hours, I was able to make many items in the box last night, so I hope that you are able to enjoy the contents this week! The weather looks promising with some days of lower temps and dew points, which means that cooking becomes much easier, at least in my household. Let’s see what’s inside this week:  

Sweet Corn: Well, growing up in the Untiedt household sweet corn was a staple for dinner. We always had sweet corn for dinner, even if it didn’t go with anything else we were having. We were always taste testing new varieties and to this day, we are probably the harshest critics of any sweet corn. To be honest, my first sweet corn of the season was eaten for dinner last night. It was amazing. I am a big fan of just cooking the corn in boiling water. Simply husk your corn, bring a pot of water to a boil, put your cobs into the boiling water and cook for 3 minutes. Simple, easy, and delicious! If you do keep your sweet corn, make sure it is in the fridge and preferably in a plastic bag. Never husk the corn until right before you are going to cook it.  

Broccoli: I think stirfry is in order this week. With a bit cooler temps, I am a bit more motivated to cook. A simple stir fry with broccoli, kohlrabi, carrots, and a bit of cabbage sounds wonderful. Find a simple stir fry sauce and add a protein of your choice, you will have a great dinner!  

Cabbages: Another batch of Crunchy Chicken Salad, a batch of sauerkraut, grilled, sautéed, the options are truly endless. Last night I used the green cabbage for a side dish to our BLTs. Simply cut the cabbage into wedges and lay on a cookie sheet. Brush both sides with olive oil and bake for 12 minutes at 450 degrees. Flip and bake for another 8 minutes. In the meantime, make the delicious sauce. In a bowl, add 3 tbsp chopped onion, 2 tbsp Dijon mustard, 3 tbsp butter and put into the microwave for 60-90 seconds to melt and mix together. Just before the 8 minutes is up on the cabbage, generously spread the sauce onto the cabbage and let it sit in the oven for just a couple of minutes. It’s a great side dish for any meal!  

Carrots: Raw, Roasted, or boiled you have options here! I think most of mine will end up in a giant stir fry. The best way to ensure you eat all your carrots within the week is to prep them right away. When you get your box home, wash your carrots and peel them right away. This will make them super easy to grab when you are in a hurry.  

Grape Tomatoes: Well, these don’t last too long around most houses. I do like to make a BLT salad with them though. What’s a BLT salad you may ask? Well, basically it’s just bacon, lettuce, and sliced tomatoes served in a bowl instead of on bread. These make a great addition to any salad you may have throughout the week.  

Kohlrabi: I can’t believe how many people said this was their favorite vegetable on the farm tours. It is so versatile and so easy that I can completely understand why. Add it to stir fry, roast like a potato, or add it to a veggie tray for a weekend at the lake. So many ways to enjoy it!  

Watermelon Radish: Ugly on the outside, beautiful on the inside. The sizes of these within your share may vary, but they are wonderful to experiment with! I highly suggest making a salad with the radish, one radish goes a long way. Stay tuned to the end of the blog for a watermelon radish salad recipe.  

Black Radish: Another sampling of something unique and different. I’ll admit, this isn’t my favorite vegetable, but I do enjoy it once or twice a year. Roasted or in stir fry is how I’ve discovered I do enjoy it. It has a very unique flavor, but one that is full of health benefits.  

Cucumbers: Add to a salad or just slice up for an afternoon snack. Or, add to a bottle of water and enjoy a refreshing drink.

Chub Cukes: Make another batch of refrigerator pickles, slice up for snacks, add to salad, the opportunities are really endless. If you are feeling really adventurous, you can even make a small batch of pickles to enjoy this winter.  

Beans: A beautiful mixture of green, yellow, and purple beans. You can add to stir fry, boil, or roast in the oven. Use these as a science experiment with your kids! Ask them to watch what happens to the purple beans as you cook them. Just a hint, they don’t retain the purple color when exposed to heat. Enjoy!  

And here is the Watermelon Radish Salad Recipe I promised:

Watermelon Radish Salad

1 Large Radish, 2 small (Peeled, and sliced with a mandolin. If you don't have a mandolin, slice as thin as possible and then slice into matchsticks.)

2 Oranges (Peeled, and chopped into bite sized pieces)

Goat Cheese

Roasted Pistachios

Chives

2 tbsp white vinegar

2 tbsp honey

2 tbsp orange juice (squeeze the juice from a piece or two of the orange)

Mix the radish and orange pieces together. In a separate bowl, whisk together the vinegar, honey and orange juice. Pour the dressing on the oranges and radishes and let sit in the fridge for about 30 minutes. Mix again before serving. Top with goat cheese sprinkles, chives, and pistachios. Simple, yet delicious! 

 

There you have it, some helpful hints to make it through week 6. The boxes are full, but lots of ideas to help you cook your way through the share this week. Thank you to all who attended farm tours. Our hope is that you took some new knowledge away and will be able to pass along some of your learnings to others.

Until next week-  

Jenna

Posted 7/17/2018 4:24am by Jenna Untiedt.

We are back for another week of CSA share ideas. I think I am in recovery mode from farm tours over the weekend, but I am trying to pull myself together to actually cook this week. I am not going to lie, I am just like a lot of you last week was a week that take out was way easier than cooking dinner. This week leads to another weekend of farm tours, but with one under our belts, preparation should be just a tad bit easier.  

Thank you to all who came out for the tours. It was a warm weekend, but I don’t think it was the hottest we have experienced. We hope you learned lots and can share what you learned about local production with others around you. So many people are unaware of where their food comes from or how it is harvested. Every piece of produce on our farm is picked by hand, that is a lot of labor. It is easy for me to get angry when people complain about prices of produce, but I need to remember that very few people visit farms or understand what goes into production. Please, share what you have learned with others.  

Not only do we need to thank you for taking time to visit the farm, but we need to thank all of our employees who put in a lot of extra hours over the weekend. From Paul and Jerry for providing incredible tours to Megan, Stuart, and Sue for making sure food was available for all attendees, it truly does take an incredibly dedicated team to pull off these events. Also to all the people in the background that helped to back up other portions of our jobs, THANK YOU. We hope you all enjoyed your tour, and hope that those who are signed up for this coming weekend enjoy the tours as well!  

Alright, let’s get into what is in the share this week:  

Chub Cukes: Well, refrigerator pickles are a really great option to use up your chubs this week. They are easy to make and great to eat….does it get much better? A little tip, if you make a batch, you can always use a food processor to slice the chubs. This helps to speed up the process. For reference, I was able to make 35 batches for tours in under and hour last week thanks to my food processor!  

Onion: If you don’t add this to your refrigerator pickles, try grilling it in pieces and adding to a burger or even just as a side to the rest of your dinner. They are so incredibly good that you won’t want to miss out. If you don’t plan on using it right away, definitely store in your refrigerator to give it the longest shelf life.  

Zucchini: I think the temperatures are back to a place where I feel like I can turn on my oven again. My favorite thing to do is to simply slice in small rounds, toss in olive oil and a bit of my favorite seasoning (anything truly works), and roast at 400 until soft. These zucchini make a great side dish or truly a main meal if you don’t feel like cooking anything else!  

Kohlrabi: Well, this was by far one of the most talked about vegetables on the tours. So many of you love it, and would never have had it if it weren’t for the CSA. You can pair the kohlrabi and broccoli to make a nice stir fry this week. Or, you can add the kohlrabi to your zucchini when you roast it. Or, just slice and eat raw! So many different options to choose from.

Slicing Cucumbers: These are my favorite pre-dinner snack. By the time I get home at night, sometimes I am so hungry I need something to hold me over until dinner is cooked. Sliced cucumbers with some hummus is always a great snack. You can always add these to your refrigerator pickles as well!   Slicing Tomatoes: Tomato Sandwiches, BLTS, taco toppings, the opportunities are endless. Occasionally, the tomatoes may be a spot when shipped, but they are still edible! Or, if you let it sit on your counter and it develops a spot, it is still edible….don’t let it go to waste. Rarely do we eat #1 tomatoes around the farm, but we take tomatoes from the #2 pile that aren’t saleable….I promise, they are still good.  

Carrots: Snacks, roasted, shredded into the Crunchy Chicken Salad recipe I am including…the opportunities are truly endless. If you roast the carrots, my favorite way is to toss in olive oil, roast and drizzle with a bit of honey you received earlier in the season. They are sweet, crunchy and you will be left wanting more.  

Broccoli: I am pretty sure I tell you each week that I just roast the broccoli until crispy and a bit burnt, but it is truly my favorite way to eat it! I made it again for dinner last night and I only got a couple pieces before Farmer Jerry finished the bowl…..I guess I will have to make my own again later in the week.  

Green Beans: Please remember that each one these beans is picked by hand! It takes a long time to pick green beans and is very labor intensive. As Farmer Jerry said, these aren’t the highest quality because of the extreme heat, but they are still well above what you can find in the grocery store in my opinion. Boiled, raw, or sautéed in a bit of butter and garlic….these are a true summer treat. Enjoy them while they last!  

Cabbage: I definitely fought a bit when Jerry said we were putting two heads of cabbage into the shares this week, but I promise you all, I have a recipe that uses up both of them and will give you dinner and maybe even leftovers for a few days depending on family size. I made a Crunchy Chicken Salad last night and it was delicious. It is quick, easy, and truly delicious. The recipe will be included below. If the salad isn’t your jam, you can always grill the cabbage, make sauerkraut, or make cabbage rolls.  

There you go, hopefully a few ideas to help you through your share this week. I really hope to cook my way through the box today after I leave work. I have the opportunity to take a leadership class one Tuesday morning a month this year, and today is the day. Because my day starts at 2:30am, I am going to work from home after my morning class, hopefully giving me a bit of time to play around with the contents and share with you all online throughout the week!    

Crunchy Chicken Salad:

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb chicken breasts, cooked and shredded (you could use a rotisserie chicken instead if you would like)
  • 2 packages of ramen noodles, chicken flavored if you use the packet-not necessary though
  • 1 cup sliced almonds
  • 1 head green cabbage-sliced thinly
  • 1 head red cabbage-sliced thinly
  • 6 green onions
  • 3 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 can mandarin oranges (if desired)  

 

  • Dressing
  • ¾ cup olive oil
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp ginger paste (or 2 tsp dried ginger)
  • Salt to taste  

 

1.     Cook chicken, shred and chill.

2.     Turn oven to 400 degrees. Break ramen noodles into small pieces and pour almonds onto cookie sheet. If you want a bit of extra flavor, feel free to sprinkle the noodles and almonds with 1 packet of seasoning from the ramen noodles. I know its not healthy, but boy does chicken ramen noodles take me back to college dorm life. Bake for 7 minutes, stirring half way through so the they don’t burn.

3.     Mix together Dressing contents, set aside.

4.     In a giant bowl, mix together the salad contents, tossing so it is all mixed up. Pour dressing over the top and mix together more with noodles and almonds. Enjoy! Serve cold and soon after mixing.

5.     While it keeps overnight, and is probably better the next day, the noodles get a bit soggy. If you know you are going to have leftovers, save some of the noddle and almond mix in a container and add to the salad the next day.

Posted 7/10/2018 4:52am by Jenna Untiedt.

Week 4 is here Summer is in full swing. I hope you all had a great Fourth of July week and weekend. Now it is back to reality and hopefully you are all enjoying what summer has to offer. I know that even with the heat, it has been great to get outdoors and enjoy the lakes, baseball games, and the evening chats on the driveway with the neighbors. Alrighty, let’s get down to business….what can you do with the CSA share this week? So many options! Here are just a few ideas to help you through the box this week.  

Cabbage: Coleslaw, salads, sandwich wraps….the options are endless. If you make coleslaw with a bagged cabbage mix, try this fresh cabbage instead! It is sweet and crispy. I threw together a quick slaw last night that had half a cup of mayo and half a cup of Greek yogurt with a splash of white vinegar and mustard. Mix it all together with a few sunflower seeds and you have yourself a really great side dish to any dinner.

Lettuce: Enjoy this last batch of spring lettuce, as there won’t be any until fall and the temperatures start to cool down. I have been a huge fan of using this for a giant dinner salad topped with salad contents from the box. Or, you can add it to a BLT…the tomatoes are perfect for BLTs this week!

Tomatoes: Speaking of tomatoes, I think BLTS might be on my menu several times this week as farm we prep for farm tours and time at home is extremely limited. Another great idea is to chop up the tomatoes and add some fresh basil, they make a great salad!

Kale: Salads, soups, or turned into kale chips….so many uses. My absolute favorite way to cook kale is to remove it from the step, tear into smaller pieces, drizzle with olive oil and massage it into the leaves, sprinkle with some garlic salt and place on a cookie sheet in the oven at about 400 degrees. Stir frequently so you don’t burn the leaves, but this makes for awesome sautéed kale, or you can cook until crispy for kale chips.

Radishes: Some of you might feel like you are overwhelmed with radishes and you don’t know what to do with them all. Honestly, they will keep for weeks if stored in your fridge in a container of ice water or in a plastic bag. Add them to all your stir-frys or roasted vegetables. These have such a mild flavor that they make a great addition to any mixed vegetable offering.

Beets: Red and Golden! Roasted or boiled are great options. You can make a salad out of the tops, or simply use the beets…the choice is yours. I am a big fan of roasting the beets and having them as a quick snack in the fridge. In fact yesterday, my lunch ended up being some roasted beets, avocado and goat cheese mixed together as I was heading out the door to visit some vegetable stands. They are full of flavor and really great to eat alone or mixed with salads.

Onion: Truly a great tasting onion. Add it to your BLTs or burgers this week and taste the difference of fresh MN onions compared to store bought onions. These are also great to add to your refrigerator pickles if you are making a batch of those this week!

Chub cucumbers: The perfect afternoon snack with some hummus or plain. They also make a great salad topper or an addition to a refreshing cocktail.

Broccoli: Raw or cooked, you can’t go wrong. There is so much flavor and this broccoli is so crisp. Try making a broccoli salad with the florets and adding the stem as well. The stem is completely edible and can easily be turned into vegetable noodles. Try spiralizing the stem and adding to some spaghetti to see if anyone notices!  

There you have it, week 4. If you haven’t already, make sure to sign up for Farm Tours. The dates listed are the only dates that we will be offering tours this summer as our calendars are quite full. We hope that you take time to come out and visit the farm and learn more about how your food is grown and what it takes to get local produce to the marketplace. Have a great week!

Posted 7/3/2018 4:43am by Jenna Untiedt.

The share this week is spectacular! Whether picking it up and heading to the cabin or sticking close to home, there are so many things that can be done with the contents. The holiday week or weekend, however you are treating it, is a great way to share your CSA with friends and family. Share your joy of MN Grown produce and help spread the word of buying locally.  

The options this week are truly endless. All are great additions to any gathering that may occur over the next few days. Here are a few ideas hopefully can help you through the share this week.  

Beets: Make sure to save the greens! They make a fantastic salad addition. Here are some quick and easy tips to store the greens and beets. Detach the beets from the greens, wash and store in the fridge. With the beet greens, make sure to wash them as they have a bit of sand on them from recent rains. Trim the greens so you rid them of the red stem. Dry the leaves and store in a plastic bag, but make sure to dry them first! From there, the opportunities are endless. I personally made the salad below last night for dinner and it was phenomenal. You can easily add steak on the side or add more things to the salad such as hard boiled eggs or avocado. It is an awesome summer salad that will definitely be added to my limited rotation of meals.  

Beet Green Salad: Warning: This makes an extremely large portion. A suggestion, prep it all, but only put together as much as you want to eat at one time so you don’t waste it!  

Salad Ingredients:

  • Beets-roasted and diced
  • Beet greens- just the green leaves, cut into thin strips
  • 2 cups cooked quinoa
  • 1 cup halved grape tomatoes, or you can just dice a regular tomato.
  • 1 can chickpeas
  • Feta cheese to sprinkle
  • Make sure everything is cold when mixing together. Toss all ingredients and then mix in dressing.  

Green Dressing: 

  • 3 garlic scapes cut into small pieces
  • 1/2  cup Greek Yogurt 
  • ½ cup Sour Cream
  • Juice of 1 lemon 
  • ¼ cup chopped basil
  • Dash of Salt. 
  • Mix all ingredients together in a blender and then toss the salad in dressing.  

Cauliflower: There are brown spots on the cauliflower due to the heat, this does not make it bad or inedible. Simply cut the spots off, or just roast it and you won’t even know they are there! Another great option is to turn the cauliflower into hummus. Bring the hummus on the boat with you along with some freshly sliced chub cukes and radishes!  

Lettuce: Now is the time for a perfect BLT or BLT salad. I love to prep all the lettuce as soon as I get it home so I can grab and go when needed. Add some fresh lettuce to your BLTs or make a quick salad. If the lettuce is a little wilted, it is due to the extreme heat. Rinse, dry, and add to a Ziploc bag with a moist paper towel to crisp it back up.  

Kohlrabi: Did you know you can foil pack kohlrabi like you do potatoes? Add the kohlrabi to your potato foil packs that may be happening for the 4th and no one will know they are getting a little extra dose of veggies in their meal.  

Garlic Scapes: Pesto, Garlic Butter, Salad Dressings, the opportunities are really endless. I added some scapes to the green dressing I put together. I also added some chopped scapes to some butter in a frying pan on low heat and sautéed some beef in it for an excellent garlic flavored steak that went along with the Beet Green salad. So many options for this unique veggie!  

Radishes: Chop up and add to any roasted vegetable medley you throw together this week. Otherwise, a great addition to the 4th would be little crostinis with shredded radishes mixed together with softened butter. I am pretty sure your guests will love them and not even realize they are eating radishes.  

Chub Cucumbers: I think it is truly summer once chubs have arrived and the first batch of Grandma Punky’s Refrigerator Pickles are made. It is truly a simply recipe that everyone loves! Bring them to the picnic this week, or keep them for yourself! I won’t judge, I don’t like to share mine once they are made.  

Tomatoes: Finally, tomatoes with flavor! A true sign of summer is a tomato sandwich. I was traveling over the weekend and didn’t return home until late Sunday night, followed by leaving my house again early Monday morning. The great thing about working across the street from your parent’s house is when you have no food for lunch, you can raid their house. It’s easily a 20 minute drive to the closest place to grab lunch, so Mom’s house is often it. So, now is the time of year I often eat tomato sandwiches for lunch. Sometimes I get fancy and add bacon, but really fresh tomato on toast is a great option!  

Strawberries: Please remember that the berries may not look perfect in the shares. The heat is REALLY hard on them, making it extremely hard for us to send them in shares, but we are trying our absolute best. Even if they are soft and a little smooshed when you receive them, you can still use them! Add them to a smoothie or smash together for topping on ice cream. We often eat with our eyes, but there are so many great things that taste awesome, even if they look bad.  

Peaches: Obviously, not MN grown, but a tradition we started many years ago. Let them ripen a bit on your counter before enjoying alone, with cottage cheese, ice cream, or on top of cereal. Truly a summer treat!   There you have it! Week 3 is here and you have some work cut out for you. So many great veggies this week and hopefully you can all make it through the box. Remember to check out our Instagram or Facebook for more ideas throughout the week. We love seeing what you all are up to.  

Remember to register for Farm Tours. Space is limited, but we added several tours to accommodate as many CSA members as possible. Farm Tour Registration!   

Posted 6/26/2018 6:42am by Jenna Untiedt.

It is already Week 2 of the CSA! Well, let’s just be thankful that all the strawberries were picked late last night for this week’s share because when I was walking into the office at 2:30 this morning, we had an extremely heavy rainfall that lasted for a few hours. Although as I write this at 6am, it has stopped raining, the fields are definitely going to be a muddy mess for the next few days.  

This share is a great mix of cook now or use later. What I mean is that you can definitely use some of the produce immediately, or you can save it for the upcoming weekend. A friendly reminder to store your produce as soon as you can, this will definitely help it keep its freshness.  

Lettuce Mixes: There are two types of lettuce this week: Romaine and Salanova Mix. Max sure to give these a good rinse. Although they are grown in the high tunnels, the pounding rains we have had over the past week still manage to splash us sand and dirt, making it a bit gritty at times. We do our best to shake it out when cutting, but it is always a good idea to give it a good rinse. These are fantastic mixes for salads. The box this week is full of goodies that can top the salads.  

Swiss Chard: A BEAUTIFUL dark red color and the flavor is outstanding. I personally like to sauté about 4 pieces of bacon in a large frying pan. I slice the chard nice and thin, including the stems and add to the bacon grease once the bacon is done along with some minced garlic. Add the bacon back in small pieces once the chard is cooked. For another nice flavor, add in about ½-1tbsp of red wine vinegar. This is great as a side dish with dinner, or a nice compliment with your morning eggs.  

Kohlrabi: There are so many uses for kohlrabi. Make sure to peel the outside of the kohlrabi to remove the tough skin. Dicing the kohlrabi, radishes, and zucchini makes for a great blend of roasted vegetables. Otherwise, there are countless kohlrabi slaw recipes or you can roast them like a potato and turn them into home style fries.  

Zucchini: A great size to make some zoodles if you are having a pasta craving. Otherwise, dice up and add to a stir fry. If you are feeling extra creative, make some zucchini bread! If you feel like you are ever swimming in zucchini, you can always freeze it. Whether you shred it and toss it in a freezer bag, or freeze on a cookie sheet in small pieces, it is great to add to soups in the winter or even bake with.  

Radishes: First off, I can’t wait to made another shredded radish toast appetizer. Simply use a nice style of bread and toast, shred some radishes and mix with a bit of soft butter. Spread on the toast and enjoy. I know I shared this last week as well, but it is a quick and easy spread that has received great reviews! I also like to add a few radishes to my stir fry or roasted vegetable plan. These are so mild and crunchy that they blend right into other roasted veggies.  

Cucumbers: Nice and crispy, a great treat for the upcoming hot spell which is being forecasted. A great snack to take to the lake or pool. Or, add a few to your daily salad. Anyway you eat them, they will definitely be a treat. Asparagus: Absolutely beautiful asparagus for this time of year! Whether you steam it, grill it, or add to a stir fry, definitely enjoy it! If you have time before the temperatures heat up this week, try adding asparagus to risotto, a great treat. Need a quick appetizer? Try wrapping a few spears in bacon and roasting.  

Broccoli: I love broccoli, especially burnt broccoli. Burnt broccoli you may ask? Toss your chopped broccoli in some olive oil and put on a cookie sheet. Roast at 425 for about 30ish minutes, stirring occasionally. It gets a bit crispy and is delicious! Otherwise, it is a great steamed or raw! Another great addition to your salads for the week.  

Strawberries: Please remember these are homegrown strawberries and will be very different than anything you buy in a grocery store. Our berries are picked red and ripe, meaning they may be a bit soft when you receive them. Soft does not mean bad, but means they are ready to eat right away. These will not keep for days on end, so I recommend eating right away. Do not rinse until you are absolutely ready to eat.  

There you have it, the second week of the CSA program. Just a friendly reminder that we will be delivering shares next Tuesday, July 3rd as our crops do not stop growing. If you need to make arrangements, please email me so we can get those changes accommodated.   Happy cooking!

Posted 6/19/2018 4:44am by Jenna Untiedt.

And so it begins, welcome to the 2018 CSA season! My goal with these short little posts is to help you through your share as easily as possible. I try to be realistic in knowing that everyone is busy, on the go, and looking for a way to add locally grown produce to their dinner plates each week.  

For those of you that are new to our CSA program, welcome! To those of you who are returning for a second, third, fourth, or have been with us for all 8 seasons, welcome back and thank you for the continued support! We are excited for another season and look forward to sharing our labor with you all. 

This week’s post is a bit longer because I like all members to understand what it takes to get fresh produce to you! I wish we could do it with the snap of our fingers, but a lot of hard work and long hours go into what we do. Did you know we hand harvest all of our produce? This is so we can send you the highest quality produce. We start harvesting produce for Tuesday delivery on Monday morning. After harvested, we cool with ice and place in our coolers until Tuesday morning. This process allows us to send you produce that is extremely fresh!  

Our CSA packing crew starts at 3am on Tuesday mornings. We diligently pack each share. If we miss a box, it is never on purpose. Simply let me know and we will make it right! The same goes for produce that might not meet our standards. If something slips through the cracks, just send me and email and we will always replace it. We do our absolute best to grade out any subpar produce, but because we are all human and no machines help with packing, sometimes we miss something. Please know, it is never on purpose and we will stand behind our promise to give you our best quality. If there are any issues, please reach out to me and they will be addressed.  

Alright, now onto the shares for this week. For those of you new to the program, I have the opportunity to stay at my parent’s house each Monday night so that I can sleep until 2:30am instead of my normal hour commute. I cooked most of the box last night and let me tell you- it was awesome! Each week I try to cook as many things as possible from the shares so I can share posts with you all throughout the week. Make sure to follow our Facebook and Instagram pages to stay inspired all summer long.  

Radishes: I’ll be honest, I am not a huge fan of radishes. But, I loved these last night. I simply grated the radishes and mixed in some butter and spread on pumpernickel toast. It was a quick, easy addition to dinner! These are great to sneak into a stir-fry, add to a salad or each alone as a snack. To ensure you get through them this week, I suggest you wash and prep them as soon as you get home. Cut the tops of, wash, slice the bottom off and store in a bowl with water in the fridge. This will keep them fresh all week long and you can grab them as you need them.  

Lettuce Mix: This was phenomenal. Minnesota lettuce is probably one of my favorite things. I am notorious for buying lettuce at the grocery store and letting it go to waste because I actually dislike the flavor that much. This though, is so fresh! It will also last for weeks! I suggest investing in a salad spinner. Slice the lettuce, spin it, and just grab as you need from the fridge! Salads, substitute for buns on burgers, or an addition to a sandwich are all great options. Enjoy!

Kale: I think kale is my favorite vegetable of all time. I could eat it every day. It was quite funny as I cooked it last night I was told I didn’t need to make the whole bunch, but surprisingly there wasn’t any left after dinner. My mother, who is definitely not a fan even ate some! My favorite way to cook kale is to tear from the stems, tear into smaller pieces, massage a bit of olive or avocado oil onto it and bake in the oven until wilted or crispy depending on my mood. You can always mix kale into your eggs, add it to a smoothie, or add to a soup.  

Cucumbers: Finally, cucumbers that aren’t bitter AND are firm. The worst thing about buying cucumbers in the grocery store during the winter is first of all having them be covered in wax and secondly having them be soft. Yes, I realize I sound very high maintenance, but when raised on a farm your expectations change. These are great to add to salads or just each plain. I love to slice them up and add to my lunch.  

Zucchini: Green and yellow are included for your enjoyment. If you are a parent with young children who don’t like their veggies, zucchini is great to ‘sneak’ into things like banana bread or even spaghetti sauce. Simply shred and add! I personally like to roast the zucchini with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper. Last night I enjoyed it mixed with wilted kale. Give it a try!   Maple Syrup: The best of the best! Save it for the weekend and make a decadent breakfast of waffles. Just remember, if you run you, this is available at our vegetable stands throughout the summer.  

Raspberry Jam: It is here. The most requested item each season. My gracious mother makes over 3,000 jars a year so that you can enjoy it twice each CSA season. Savor this little jar, because it truly is special. Enjoy on toast or top your vanilla ice cream with a spoonful. It truly is the best. Please note that it is sealed with paraffin wax, so the seal will not be solid on the jar…this is normal. It truly is and old fashioned jam!  

Honey: This honey is spectacular on toast or even for baking. Add to a cup of hot tea for a great natural sweetener. If you are an allergy sufferer, this is a local honey, and local honey can help suppress your seasonal allergies.  

Herbs: Peppermint and Stevia. Which is which? Take a taste of the leaves. The one that tastes sweet will be the stevia, and the mint flavored leaf will be peppermint. You can use these herbs once or add to your garden. These will last a couple weeks max in their current container, so I highly suggest replanting them if you would like to keep them going all summer. There are countless uses for these herbs. I highly suggest a simple google search to find what you might enjoy using these for!  

There you have it, week 1 of the 2018 CSA season. I hope you enjoy this share as much as we do! Spread the word to your friends, neighbors and family that we still have shares available. Shares purchased going forward are prorated according to what week we are on. If you have questions, comments, or concerns please feel free to reach out at anytime!  

Cheers!

-Jenna

Posted 3/12/2018 3:20pm by Jenna Untiedt.

While we all might not be happy about the hour we lost this weekend, it is a sign of what’s to come. Days are getting longer. The forecast has 50 degrees in the near future. The snow is rapidly melting and soon enough, Spring will be here! With Spring arriving soon, our staff is well into planning for the upcoming season. Plants are being planted, seeds are being seeded, and soon enough you will see our greenhouses going up in parking lots near you.  

With the thought of Spring arriving, the thought of staffing our garden centers comes to mind. It is that time of year where we are ready to begin adding to our talented teams. Do you enjoy working outside? Do you like to get your hands dirty and take care of plants? Do you enjoy being part of a fast-paced environment? Well, consider joining our team for the 2018 season. 

Part-time, Full-time, evenings, weekends, we are looking for individuals to fill our teams. We have several positions available and would love to talk to you if you are interested. In addition to our garden center staff positions, we are also hiring for vegetable stand positions. More information can be found here: http://untiedtswegrowforyou.com/employment

Here are a few positions that are available for the upcoming season:  

Buffalo Garden Center: Full-Time, Part-Time  

Eden Prairie Garden Center: Full-Time, Part-Time  

Maple Grove Garden Center: Full-Time, Part-Time  

Minnetonka Garden Center: Full-Time, Part-Time  

Montrose Garden Center: Full-Time, Part-Time. This location is open from the beginning of May through mid-June.  

Waconia Garden Center: Full-Time, Part-Time. This location is open from the beginning of May through mid-June.  

Vegetable Stand Locations: Maple Lake, Plymouth, Wayzata, Minneapolis, Mound, Eagan, Richfield  

We are looking forward to meeting with interested applicants in the coming weeks. Spread the word and we hope to have you on our team this coming Spring/Summer!