News and blog

Current happenings on and around the farm!
Posted 4/11/2019 12:03pm by Colleen Quiram.

The snow is falling…wait, no, the sleet is falling…wait, no, the sleet is pelleting the windows here in the office! Well, either way we are having quite the weather roller-coaster today! We have been getting a lot of questions these past few days about our CSA program, and how this storm might affect not only our produce but also our annual flowers and structures. I am happy to say that as of right now all is well on the farm!

We began planting our tomato plants on Monday of this week in the tunnels, where it is a comfortable 55°. We have many more tomatoes to plant, but they will wait patiently until this storm is over, enjoying their warm space as well. We have generators on standby, as power outages are likely with the amount of wind and ice in the forecast. Our crews are working tirelessly checking heaters, propane, plastic coverings, and power even through the night. Keep them in your thoughts as we all are lucky enough to stay home and out of the weather! 

The annual flowers are also nice and warm, unaware of the weather outside. While we could use some more sun to help them grow thick and lush, they will be beautiful in time for our stands to open in May! This snow and ice should melt quickly, and we are looking forward to getting our retail locations set up in just 2 weeks.

While this storm is packing a punch, we did experience something similar last April. Almost 2-feet of snow over 2 days, and that was almost a week later into the season than this storm. We stayed the course and had produce and plants ready as planned last year, at this time we should not see any delays this year either. We still expect to begin CSA deliveries on June 18th. Although, If Minnesota keeps this up, that may yet change.

Thanks for checking in on us, this is just Mother Natures way of making us thankful for the heat I’m sure she will deliver this summer, right? =)

Colleen  

Posted 3/22/2019 10:15am by Colleen Quiram.

Another beautiful morning has dawned at 33°F without a cloud in the sky and nary a cold breeze to impede the thaw. What a difference a week can make in March. The Canadian Geese arrived last Monday and already the females are laying claim to the best nesting locations on our farm’s wetlands. The male Red Wing Blackbirds have arrived, along with Killdeer, Robins, Mallards and Pintail ducks. Yesterday we saw our first Bluebirds! It’s just a wonderful time of the year as our farm awakens after a long winter’s nap!

Our struggles continue with our very much needed workforce who are still in their native countries due to the delays in the governments visa issuing procedures. Our transplanting and high tunnel preparations are at a standstill. As we reach out to our Senators and Representatives in DC for help, we are basically met with “there’s not much we can do”. This situation is critical, and on both the state and national level, no help for the farming community seems to be the norm.

On the growing front, the snow is rapidly receding with bare fields appearing starting the spring ‘drying out’ season. Thankfully the nights have been dropping below 32°F, allowing the melt to continue in a manner that is slowing the flood potential on our North Fork of the Crow River. The river is flowing at the top of its banks, so a slower addition of runoff water is most advantageous.

We hope you all have seen the incredible Super Worm Moon these last few nights! We encourage you all to get outside this weekend. Open your ears to the beautiful music generated by our returning songbirds, watch the color changing of the tree buds as they swell with new life, and breathe in the smells of spring. We hope you can all enjoy this most precious time of the season!

Our best to you all!

Jerry & Crew

Posted 3/14/2019 7:49pm by Colleen Quiram.

It’s closing in on the middle of March and Mother Nature keeps throwing her troops at us – one after another! We’ve laid our ground and we will not surrender!

Normally we have the first Robins, Red Wing Blackbirds, Killdeers, geese and ducks here by now. This year none of that, the lakes are still covered by 24-30” of ice with two feet of snow on top. Our local White Tail Deer herd has grown to nearly 100 animals, all foraging on last fall’s left-over pumpkins and squashes. The fox squirrels are making a 200-yard dash across an open field to scrounge squash seeds, while exposing themselves to hovering eagles and hawks in the sky above them. Certainly a risky proposition, but one needing to be taken to sustain survival near the end of a brutal winter.

As far as the farm, we’ve completed grafting the first planting of tomatoes, and are trying to slow their grown rate down by keeping our temperatures low and the plants very dry. Our high-tunnels are so snow and ice laden that entry is nearly impossible. As I write, the rain keeps falling which will help melt some ice slowly, but creates an awfully large amount of runoff water contributing to flooding.

Our onion, leek and shallot transplants are doing well, having been in the soil since the 6th of February. Our goal is to transplant them around April 10th, but who knows! Our other seedlings, such as Jicama and Peppers, are gathering heat in the soil, hoping to emerge in the next two weeks or so.

Flower seeding and plant plug transplanting are part of our daily duties now, and will continue until early May. The snow banks have made heating a bit easier as they’ve sealed the greenhouses from cold drafts and helped slow down our propane gas usage.

I do my best to keep you all updated on our growing program and must certainly say Thank You to all that have enrolled in this years CSA Program. Please tell your friends and neighbors that registration is open, which will allow us to keep the program growing.

Many thanks and until next week, we are yours sincerely,

Jerry & Crew

Posted 3/11/2019 9:57am by Colleen Quiram.

Only 8 more days till Spring arrives!  Even with all this fresh, heavy snow, that sun is feeling stronger and warmer, the daytime temps are above freezing, it is already beginning to feel like spring to us! We hope the spring melt is a slower one, only to avoid any flooding of lakes and rivers. Although with 1-2” of rain in the forecast, we may not get what we wish for.

The sun now is just as strong as it is at the end of September, and we are nearing 12 hours of light per day which is wonderful for our seedlings sprouting in the greenhouses. Not much has been started yet besides onions and tomatoes, but in the coming weeks we will be starting peppers, zucchini, eggplant, and so many others. Already we have begun close to 40,000 onions, a mix of varieties from our Epicurean sweet whites to Spanish onions to large reds.

Flowers for the greenhouses are beginning to arrive, and Paul is hard at work with his crew putting together those first hanging baskets and combo pots for Mother’s Day Weekend. Hard to believe, but in just 6 short weeks we will be building our greenhouses across the west metro and getting ready to open our gates! Soon we will have pansies on our front steps, we will trade our snow shovels for gardening tools, and be enjoying tulips, hyacinth, and daffodil bulbs blooming in our gardens.

Our plans for the CSA program continue to move forward as we are out visiting many of our corporate drop sites during the week. Be sure to stop by and say hi when you see us at your office! If you haven’t signed up for your 2019 Share yet, you can register here. This month we have added two more new drop sites:

Plymouth Park Nicollet – Open to the Public (only 12 shares available)

Meridian Crossings at 494 & 35W – Open to tenants only

 

Not sure if we deliver to your building? Check out our full listing of private corporate sites here!

What part of Spring are you most looking forward to? Cheerful Pansies, fresh Asparagus, or not having to wear a coat? I think I am most looking forward to not having to wear a coat!

~Colleen

Posted 2/17/2019 10:20am by Colleen Quiram.

The job never ends when you work on a farm. There are a few short weeks around the holidays when we can all take a deep breath and relax, but come January the work starts right up again. Not that we mind, it’s nice to have some time in the winter to repair machinery, make changes to structures (weather permitting of course!), evaluate the previous season and make some improvements before diving into the new year. And at least the work days aren’t quite as long!

This slower season has really been a time of change for all of us on the farm. For example, we have been attending seminars and training, and learning more about the new FSMA Law (Food Safety and Modernization Act). We are proud to say we have the most employees for any farm in Minnesota trained in FSMA standards! And we are busy making many changes in our processes to keep your food clean and safe in a world where food safety is a major concern.

Another major change this winter is that Jenna Untiedt, whom many of you have come to know through her work at our Minneapolis Farmers Market as a barista, and as our CSA Coordinator for the previous 8 years, has decided to move on and expand her horizons! She has been indispensable to the farm, growing the CSA program, working with many of our farmers markets, and managing our Wright County stands. We are so grateful for all the work she has done, and the amount of time and energy she has invested in our farm, we wish her the best of luck in her new endeavors! Of course, being one of Jerry’s daughters, she will always be around and willing to help out if needed. So, you never know, you may still see her at one of our summer CSA Farm Tours!

This is where I come in. With Jenna’s departure, I was asked to take over some of her role and become the new CSA Coordinator. And I was thrilled with the opportunity! I am not new to the Untiedt’s organization, and I already know many of you from my many years managing our Maple Grove Garden Center. The locally grown produce and sustainable farm practices is what got me hooked on this farm in the beginning, so to have the chance to share my passion for cooking with fresh ingredients, knowing how your food is grown, and encouraging people to spend more time around the table with friends and family, I couldn’t say no! I am looking forward to getting to know many more of you in this new role.

January was spent learning about our CSA Dropsites, both public and private corporate locations, and getting to know our systems and processes on the farm. It is exciting to not only see all the plans that are coming in our future, but to also be a part of the planning! For example, I am happy to announce that we are expanding our CSA program to include more dropsites this year!

Hy-Vee in Cottage Grove is open to the public

Children’s Business Center in Minnetonka (Private Corporate site)

Prime Therapeutics Boulder Lakes in Eagan (Private Corporate site)

VanWagenen in Eden Prairie (Private Corporate site)

Fairview Oxborough Clinic in Bloomington (Private Corporate site)  

We are also planning a few new products for our CSA shares, including Okra, Broccolini, maybe celery, and some more onion varieties. Of course, these crops are all weather dependent! I’m curious, what produce items would you like us to look into growing for 2019? Send me an email! Colleen@UntiedtsWeGrowForYou.com

Of course, as I move on from Maple Grove, there is a new management position open in our growing company. If you or someone you know may be interested in managing a thriving garden center, who is focused on customer service, locally grown products, and loves being outside, please send them our way! We are already in preparations for the next gardening season, and managers of all our retail locations are meeting soon to discuss the 2019 season.

Keep an eye on our Facebook page this week, CSA Day is Friday, February 22nd, and we are doing some fun giveaways to all CSA members registered by Friday! If you haven’t signed up for your share yet, now is a perfect time to do so, you can register here on our website, or give us a call at the farm during business hours to register with our payment plan.

I’m curious, how many of you have saved your summer CSA produce by freezing or canning it, and are you using it this winter? What is your favorite winter recipe? Send me an email!

~Colleen

Posted 10/9/2018 7:51am by Jenna Untiedt.

Here we are, the last week of the CSA season. I’m an early morning riser most days, but I won’t be disappointed to sleep in past 2:30am on Tuesdays going forward. While it has been a great season, the weather is forecasting what’s to come. The share this week will keep you nice and warm, while also giving you a few flashbacks to the wonderful days of summer.  

Before I dive into some suggestions for the share this week, I want to thank you all for a great season. Please take a few moments to fill out our end of the season survey, as this survey allows us to continually build a better program each season.

Also, please recycle all boxes at your home after today as we won’t be back to pick up the boxes. If you happen to be around any of our retail locations, feel free to drop off the empty boxes there.  

Lastly, registration for the 2019 Season is Open! Sign up by 12/31 to secure last years pricing. Prices will go up on 1/1/2019.

Now, let’s get down to some fun ideas for the share contents this week:

Fireside Apples: Perfect for baking, apple sauce, or fresh eating. I made an excellent batch of homemade applesauce last weekend. If you haven’t tried homemade applesauce, definitely give it a try and you won’t be disappointed.  

Brussels Sprouts: Snap all the sprouts off the stalk and store in a container in your fridge. They are fantastic roasted whole or chopped. I like to roast with a bit of olive oil and garlic salt for the perfect side dish to any meal.  

Beets: Roasted, boiled, pickled, so many options. A medley of roasted beets, carrots and parsnips truly makes a wonderful fall meal. Store the beets in the crisper drawer in the fridge for up to a couple weeks.  

Carrots: These are the absolute best! Roasted is my favorite way to enjoy these. Peel, dice, and roast on a baking sheet until a bit crispy….so tender and flavorful.  

Parsnips: A great addition to the roasted carrots. These are packed with the carrots and beets, white in color, but so full of flavor. Add a diced sweet potato to the mix and I’m not sure you need anything else for dinner.  

Sweet Dumpling Squash: Dessert at its finest. Bake at 350 for 35-45 minutes or until soft to the touch. Enjoy with butter and brown sugar for an extra special treat, or just some salt and pepper. Store in a cool, dry place to get some extra shelf life out of this variety.  

Buttercup Squash: I was never a fan of buttercup squash until this season. The squash this year has been unbelievable. My favorite thing to do right now is bake a couple of squash on the weekend and store in containers so I can grab for easy lunches or quick additions to dinner throughout the week. You can also freeze squash. Simply bake, let cool then store in a freezer container. This is a great way to make sure none of your squash goes to waste.  

Fennel: Add a bit to the roasted vegetable medley I talked about earlier and the smell of fall will be permeating throughout your house. Make sure to store in a storage bag in your fridge so the smell doesn’t seep into other items in the fridge.  

Potatoes: Another great mixture of potatoes. These will store for a bit, so don’t feel rushed to use them right away. If you are going to use within a week, you can store on your counter. If you don’t think you will get to them that quickly, feel free to place them in the fridge in a dry container or bag for up to 3 weeks. Both varieties found in this bag make excellent fried potatoes or even potato soup. Enjoy!  

Onions: Yes, a full bag, but one that will last for a bit of time. Keep on your counter or in a cool, dry storage area. Use within a month, but these have such mild flavor you should not have a problem getting through them all. If you find that you aren’t using them up, you can saute them and throw them in a freezer bag for later use. They make great additions to soups, stews, or other items throughout the winter months.  

Lettuce: The last of the lettuce is here. This will last for weeks if stored properly. Wash and dry completely, then store in a plastic bag. Take out what you need as you need it and enjoy!  

Pie Pumpkin: While most people use these for decoration, they can be used to bake as well. I am including a recipe in the newsletter for pumpkin bars that uses real baked pumpkin. They are the absolute best. Add a layer of cream cheese frosting at the end and you have yourself the perfect fall treat. You can also try a pumpkin soup or pumpkin sauce for pasta, there really are a bunch of ways to include pumpkin in your diet.  

Tomatoes: The last of the season for many of us. They may not be red all the way through yet, but let them ripen on the counter until deep red. Enjoy one last BLT before we are back to store bought tomatoes for the winter.  

Popcorn: A multiuse item. First use the popcorn as fall décor, then let it continue to dry until after the first of the new year when it can be used as edible popcorn! Shell the kernels and toss in some oil in a frying pan and you have yourself a great evening activity of old fashioned popcorn making!

Sweet Potatoes: Not always the prettiest in size, but definitely full of taste. Store on the counter until you are ready to use. Bake, boil, roast, mashed….so many options to enjoy these. If you decide to mash them, add a bit of sautéed onion and a dash of canned coconut milk to give them an extra dose of flavor.  

Raspberry Jam: Thanks to my mom, everyone can enjoy another jar of jam. Remember these are sealed with paraffin wax, so the seal will pop on the top, but it is completely edible. Enjoy this special treat!  

Honey: Local honey from the bees in our orchard. This honey can help with seasonal allergies, add great flavor to your morning tea, or make a great topping to your toast.  

Maple Syrup: A staple in my kitchen as I use it for pancakes and waffles, a natural sweetener for coffee, or used in many baking recipes. Remember, if you think you will need more this winter, you can always stock up on syrup and honey at our Garden Centers before they close on Halloween.  

Mini Pumpkins and Gourd: Just a small assortment to add some color to your desk or kitchen table. Enjoy!  

There you have it, the final share of the 2018 season. An extremely full share that will hopefully leave you all satisfied. I hope you have enjoyed the program this year and have learned someone about Fresh and Local produce production. Hopefully you have tried something new, found a new favorite vegetable, or at least expanded your cooking skills in the kitchen. Enjoy the winter and we hope to see you back next season!  

Posted 10/2/2018 4:03am by Jenna Untiedt.

It’s amazing how much can change in one week. Temperatures are significantly cooler, the air feels crisper, and Fall is definitely here. Bring on the fall scarves, flannel shirts, and boots. I have resisted the urge to turn the heat on in my house, so evenings consist of warm meals followed by time on the couch wrapped up in a blanket. It really isn’t that cold, but the change of seasons has definitely occurred. Sun rises are getting later and later, while the sunset is getting earlier and earlier. These are the perfect fall nights to roast some veggies and fill your home with the smells of fall. Fresh baked apple crisp, warm squash, or soup are all great ways to use up your shares this week. Let’s break it down by item to give you a few ideas. 

Haralson Apples: The perfect apple for applesauce, pies, or crisp. If you have several apples in your refrigerator because you have not been able to get to them the past few weeks, applesauce or crisp is a great way to use them up. Applesauce is extremely easy. Simply peel a few apples, put in a pot with some sugar, a bit of water, and some cinnamon. Bring to a boil and mash. It really is that simple. It is even better when you put warm applesauce on the top of some vanilla ice cream….the true fall time treat.  

Lettuce: Perfect to wrap your burgers in or make an ultimate salad. Remember that fresh lettuce will last for up to two weeks if you wash, dry, and put in a container or storage bag. Enjoy this great flavor before we are back to store bought lettuce for the winter.  

Radishes: Great salad toppers or just a quick afternoon snack. Crunchy, but so mild in flavor. If you aren’t a huge fan of radishes, try adding them to a stir fry for an extremely mild flavor addition.  

Potatoes: So many uses for the large bag of potatoes. I enjoy using the fingerlings as a side to any meal by cooking them for a couple minutes in the microwave and then smashing with a fork and frying them up in a pan. The Oneida Golds have wonderful flavor and can be used as baked potatoes or mashed potatoes. Or, chop them all up and make a great hash!   Leeks: Add to soups, stews, or stir fry. I made a Mongolian beef stir fry last night and added leeks which were so tasty. They add such a mild onion flavor, nothing over powering at all.  

Kale: It is the perfect season for a Kale and brussels sprout warm salad. So many recipes can be found online, but ill include one in the weekly newsletter as well. This is also perfect for chips or for adding to smoothies if that is more your thing.  

Brussels Sprouts: Still on the stalk, just pop them off and store in the refrigerator. Roast them whole or chop and roast with some bacon for added flavor. The light frost we had really helped to make them sweet and tender.  

Acorn Squash: You can get really fancy and make stuff squash, or if you are like me, I really just enjoy baking squash at the beginning of the week and enjoying it all week long. This will last for a few weeks, so do not feel like you have to get to it today.  

Delicata Squash: Sweet and flavorful. Truly my favorite way to enjoy Delicata squash is just to bake it and enjoy with a dash of butter and if you want a real treat, add a bit of brown sugar.  

Carrots: Delicious fall carrots are here. Peel and roast these. They are wonderful. Let them get a little crispy from the pan and you will gobble them all right up. I was sad I had to share them at the dinner table last night.  

Cabbage: A small head of cabbage as a last minute add to the shares, but this makes a great base for a stir fry. Instead of rice last night, I used some steamed cabbage as the base. It was wonderful. Don’t be scared to try steaming and eating alone either-it has great flavor.  

There you have it, week number 16. One more week to go! I hope that you have all enjoyed your shares this season and are finding new ways to enjoy fresh and local produce. Most importantly, I hope you have learned more about fresh and local produce and what it takes to produce it all. Happy cooking this week!

-Jenna

Posted 9/25/2018 4:03am by Jenna Untiedt.

Summer yesterday, fall today. Hopefully we are done with the drastic temperature swings, and can finally enjoy the fall temperatures. In my mind, there is nothing better than being able to spend some time in the kitchen on the weekend cooking or baking, all while having the patio door or windows open allowing the crisp fall air into cool down the house. The share this week really dives into the offerings of fall and will have you wishing it lasted just a bit longer.

I had the chance to visit with many CSA members last week at an event and the most requested support was what to do with squash. How to cook it, how to store it, and what to do with it other than bake it. I will dive into some squash tips here this week that will hopefully help you through your share. Just remember, Google is your friend and can always provide a million ways to cook or store your vegetables.

Before getting into what to do with the share this week, let’s get the basics of squash down.

  • Storage: Store on your counter, out of direct light, or in someplace cool. Do not store in the refrigerator. It should last up to a month or longer if stored in a cool, dry location.
  • Cooking: There are so many ways! First off, make sure to wipe down the squash before you go to cook it.
    • You can bake it. Simply cut the squash in half, scoop out the seeds, lay face down on a cookie sheet at bake at 350 degrees until soft. This can take anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour and a half for a larger squash. There are certain varieties that are difficult to cut, like the spaghetti squash, so you can poke with a fork like you would a potato and bake whole until the skin bounces back when touched. Let the squash cool a bit before going to cut it, as the inside holds lots of heat when you cook it this way. Instant pot! Yes, you can cook a whole squash in the Instant Pot. I like to put about a cup and a half of water in the bottom of the pot, poke plenty of holes in the squash, and cook under high pressure for anywhere from 12-18 minutes depending on the size of the squash. Again, be careful when you go to cut the squash in half when done.
  • How to eat it: Once the squash is cooked there are so many uses. Mashed up, make a soup, cut into slices and add some fall spices. The ideas are endless!
  • Can you freeze squash?: Yes, yes you can and it is super easy. Just bake the squash as normal, let cook and then place in a freezer approved container or bag. When you go to use it again, just remove from bag or container, heat up and there you have it. Freezing squash is a pretty easy project that you won’t regret come mid-February.

I hope those squash tips help you all out a bit. Let’s get down to the rest of the share this week:  

Buttercup Squash: Honestly, I have never been a fan of buttercup squash. I remember eating it for dinners as a child and it was dry and blah. I don’t know if it was a bad memory, or if this variety is much superior to the squash I remember, but the squash I had for dinner last night was outstanding. I made a buttercup and sausage soup that was outstanding. The recipe will be at the bottom of this blog. Whether you turn it into soup, eat it mashed, or find another way to use it, there is a great deal of flavor and nutrients packed into the squash.

White Acorn: Makes a great side dish to any meal. Baked acorn squash is one of my favorites. This type is very mild and can be enjoyed with any meal. Give it a try!

Spaghetti Squash: This makes a great pasta substitute. I am terrified of cutting spaghetti squash because I always feel like I am going to cut off a finger, so I cooked mine in my Instant Pot last week….definitely a game changer. It was awesome. If you don’t have an Instant Pot, just pierce the skin and cook it whole in the oven until soft and you can then cut in half. Treat this just like spaghetti noodles and top with a great dose of marinara sauce, or get creative and make a fun hot dish with it.

Sweet Potatoes: I went on a field trip with Farmer Jerry a couple of weeks ago to check the sweet potatoes in the field. Let me tell you that it is a full body workout to dig sweet potatoes. It is A LOT of work! You have to cut the vines, pull back the mulch, then dig really deep to find the potatoes….most of this by hand because you don’t want to cut the potatoes in half with a shovel. Ughh…to all of our potato diggers, thank you! Anyways, these are absolutely fantastic roasted, baked, or boiled. My favorite way to enjoy sweet potatoes is to dice into chunks and roast in the oven with a bit of coconut oil or alongside some chicken thighs.

Radishes: A flashback to summer, but truly a fall variety. A great snack on the go, or maybe a batch of radish butter might be in the works. Store in cold water in the fridge to give them some extra life!

SweeTango Apples: These are my absolute favorite apple. Give me these over a Honeycrisp any day of the week. They are superb for baking or eating. As the CSA season comes to an end over the next few weeks, please remember to look for MN apples well into the fall and winter. There will always be MN apple varieties such as SweeTango and Honeycrisp apples shipped in from Washington, but the ones from MN have a much better flavor as the apples were originally bread here and were designed to be produced in MN. Just food for thought.

Baby Bok Choy: Roasted or stir fry are great options for the baby bok choy this week. This has truly become a favorite this summer and hope that you are enjoying it as well.

Romaine and Red Leaf Lettuce: OMG….real lettuce again! The flavor is fantastic and it is just so superior to store bought lettuce. Give it a good wash as the bottom of the leaves do have a bit of sand from the extreme rain we had last week. The romaine makes a wonderful wrap for burgers or sandwiches, while the red leaf is fantastic in salads. So many options, definitely enjoy!

Onions: These can now be stored on your counter as they have been seasoned for a few weeks. These are great to add to soups or sauté up for a side of onions for your burgers or sandwiches.

Grape Tomatoes: The best finger food out there. Store on your counter and not in the refrigerator. Wonderful addition to tacos, pasta toppings, or salads. Enjoy this flavor as long as you can!  

There you have it, week 15 in a nutshell. Two more weeks remain of the 2018 CSA season. The share boxes are likely to be heavy from here on out as they will be filled with squash varieties, apples, and other heartier vegetables. We will be doing an end of the season survey in the coming weeks along with opening 2019 registration. Keep you eyes open for future emails with this information.

Until Next Week- Jenna

 

Buttercup Squash and Sausage Soup

1 buttercup squash

1 can coconut milk

2 cups chicken broth

1/2 cup water

1 diced onion

2 cloves garlic minced

1 lb spicy italian sausage

2 tbsp coconut oil

  1. Bake Squash until soft.
  2. While squash is baking, saute onion and garlic until soft in coconut oil. Add sausage and brown while breaking apart with a spatula. Once cooked, set aside.
  3. When squash is cooked, scoop into a blender and add 1 can coconut milk. Mix until smooth. 
  4. Add squash mixture into soup pan and whisk in chicken broth and water. Once mixed together, add in sausage and onion mix. 
  5. Enjoy!
Posted 9/18/2018 3:47am by Jenna Untiedt.

With cooler temperatures, the desire to cook is on the rise. The thought of spending a few hours in the kitchen is now a welcome thought instead of a dreaded one. As I write this at 3 in the morning, the rain is lightly falling and the temperatures have fallen into the low 60s. It truly was perfect sleeping weather when my alarm went off at 2:15am.

The share this week truly brings us into the Fall season. The smells of baking squash, warm soup, or fresh cut apples await you. The wonderful things about fall shares, is the ability to store many of the contents for future use or use the produce right away. Squash has a long shelf life if stored in a cool place, not your refrigerator, but a drawer out of direct sunlight or in the basement. It is also extremely easy to freeze. Simply cook, cool, and put in a freezer safe container.

Anyways, let’s get down to business and see what’s in the box this week:  

Acorn Squash: The green variety in your share this week is acorn. Growing up, this was a staple in the Untiedt household. We all actually had our favorite varieties, so often times we had several varieties on the table each night, but this was a common one. Squash instantly adds fall flavor to any meal. Give it a try!

Butternut squash: A sweet, very popular variety is also here for your enjoyment. You can enjoy this variety baked and roasted in the oven, sautéed or roasted with a variety of spices, or you can add in place of sweet potatoes to many recipes. The uses for butternut squash are truly endless.  

Honeycrisp Apples: These are truly enjoyed by just slicing and eating. These posses the crisp bite that reminds everyone of Fall. They are sweet and make a great afternoon snack. Yes, they can also be used in baking, but I would recommend these as more of an eating apple.  

Sweet Corn: Possible the last of the sweet corn until the 2019 season. While you may have had your fill, enjoy these last few ears whether it is boiled, roasted on the grill, or added to soup, the flavor is unlike anything you will get at the store during the winter. I plan on cutting mine off the cob and adding it to my Potato, Leek, and Cauliflower Soup I will make this week.  

Potatoes: These are amazing. Each potato picked off the ground by hand, they are a labor of love. You can split this serving of potatoes into two, and make a wonderful batch of Potato, Leek, and Cauliflower Soup, or use the entire batch and make just Potato and Leek Soup. I will include the recipe at the end of the blog. If soup isn’t your thing, try roasting these. They have great flavor and will last a few weeks in your fridge if you can’t get to them right away.

Leeks: The long green things in your share. Similar to an onion, but much more mild. Make sure to wash well, especially between the leaves where the sand and dirt can creep in on windy days. Sauteed and added to soup or added to a stir fry, these will leave you very satisfied.

Cauliflower: While not as bright white as we may be used to, definite still full of flavor. Roasted, added to soup, mashed as faux potatoes, or cut into florets for an afternoon snack, there are many uses for this vegetable. Please look past the few spots that may have occurred due to the hot temps we had this past weekend, it is still 100% edible.

Fennel: This will fill your house with true fall aroma when you cook with it. Do yourself a favor and pick up a pork tenderloin or some pork chops that you can bake and add the fennel to the baking dish. It is a great compliment to any pork dish and really makes you feel like fall is here to stay.

Tomatoes: Some red slicing tomatoes and an heirloom to make you feel like summer is still here. Added to salads, sandwiches, or just plain these are still full of flavor and can bring you back to warm summer days. Remember, if you can’t get to all your tomatoes, just chop them up and put them in a freezer container. You can add frozen tomatoes to any soup or chili throughout the winter for an added punch of flavor.

There you have it, week 14 is in the books. I highly recommend giving my Potato, Leek, and Cauliflower soup a try. I am including the traditional Potato and Leek Soup recipe I usually make in the newsletter, but my parents are giving the Whole 30 a try, so I had to make a compliant soup for them last night. This soup is super easy and delivers a great flavor.

Potato, Leek, Cauliflower Soup

1 head cauliflower. Cut into florets

1lb red potatoes, wash and cut into large chunks

2 leeks, sliced thinly

1 cup coconut milk (from the can), or 1 cup Heavy Cream

4 cups Chicken Broth

Salt and Pepper

2 tbsp ghee or butter  

Step 1: Steam Cauliflower until soft. Boil Potatoes until tender.

Step 2: While potatoes are boiling and cauliflower is steaming, saute leeks in ghee or butter until translucent or soft.

Step 3: Once cauliflower and potatoes are cooked until tender, add to a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth while adding leeks.

Step 4: Add 1 cup coconut milk or heavy cream while blending. If there is room in the food processor, begin to add in the chicken broth as well. If there is not room, no worries, pour the contents from the food processor back into a stock pot and add broth while whisking together.

Step 5: Heat for about 10 minutes and enjoy! There you have it, an easy soup to warm you up on a cool night.  

Until next week,  

Jenna

Posted 9/11/2018 4:13am by Jenna Untiedt.

A healthy dose of fall was has this past week, but now we are welcoming summer back with open arms. It is a funny time of year where we wish for the cool nights of fall, but aren’t ready to let go of the flip flops and warm days of summer. My favorite thing about this time of the year is the ability to get back into the kitchen a bit more. With cooler temps, I don’t feel as bad warming my house up by cooking. Although Sundays have always been my meal prep days for the week, they are now turned into day long adventures with football on in the background, truly a sign of fall.  

Let’s get down to the share this week:  

Sweet Corn: A great white variety with tons of flavor. Please note as Farmer Jerry said in his newsletter that there may be some worms in the tips of the corn. Just take a paring knife and slice off the end. The corn is still 100% edible and delicious. Boiled, roasted, raw, anyway you like to eat sweet corn, this variety will not disappoint. Lately, I have been a huge fan of slicing it off the cob when I get it home, sautéing it a bit, and then storing it in the fridge until I can add it to another dish like my eggs in the morning or a quick stir fry for dinner.  

Zestar! Apples: A nice big bag of apples for snacks or baking. I think a nice batch of apple crisp or an apple pie might be in my future this week. While I love eating these apples plain or with a touch of peanut butter, maybe a homemade dessert is in store this week instead.  

Bok Choy: The easiest side dish to whip up on a busy night to ensure you are getting your green vegetables. Simply add to a frying pan with a bit of garlic and olive oil and cook down. Top with some coconut aminos or soy sauce and you have a wonderful side dish. If you aren’t a huge fan of Bok Choy, try adding it to a soup!

Cauliflower: Please remember that if your cauliflower has little spots on it, it is not mold, but rather from the heat or oxidation after the heads have been cut from the stalk. They are 100% edible. I don’t even bother to slice off the spots, but rather just slice the cauliflower and roast away.

Romano Beans: I made a batch last night. They are simply wonderful. Sauté your shallots in some butter or ghee until crispy and then add the beans. Cover so the beans can steam a bit and there you have it, a wonderful dinner in itself. I did a little experiment a few weeks back and my Romano Beans kept for almost 3 weeks in my fridge. I simply washed and then put in a Ziplock bag with a wet paper towel. I will say the beans did dry out a bit, but they definitely did not mold and I was able to cook them up. Why did I wait 3 weeks? Well, I didn’t mean to, but sometimes I lose food in my refrigerator.

Heirloom Tomatoes: A great reminder of the hot days of summer. These are great on their own or with a dash of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and a bit of salt and pepper. Try adding these to your BLTs and notice the flavor difference. Heirlooms are much softer than a traditional tomato, so please know they are not over ripe, it is just the characteristic of the tomato.  

Broccoli: A small sampling as the heat shrunk the heads, but a great treat none the less. Try roasting with the cauliflower and enjoying as a side to the rest of your dinner meal. Store in your refrigerator until use. Also note that broccoli is pretty forgiving in the fact that it can get fairly soft in your fridge, but definitely cooks up very nicely. Don’t let it go to waste!  

There you have it, another week in the books. 4 weeks to go following today, but plenty of things to come like sweet potatoes, squash, brussels sprouts, and more. We are switching to fall mode on the farm which means we no longer have a parking lot as it has turned into a holding spot for bins of pumpkins that are waiting to get shipped out. Our apple harvesters continue to harvest apples, squash is being picked daily, all in addition to the summer vegetables you have come to love in your shares. Enjoy this time of year and all the freshness that is available, because it only lasts for a small amount of time.  

Have a great week!