Sunday, June 28, 2015

Week 4 Newsletter 2015

Hello Everyone,      

Ah, finally the strawberry patch is changing color. There will be some bright red berries in the bins this week. You will also find some other early summer delights including garlic scapes.

You may ask, "What are garlic scapes? " Garlic scapes are leafless flower stalks of a plant that grow directly from the root. Garlic scapes are the thin, green curlicues that grow directly from the root of a hard-necked variety of garlic plant.

The scapes need to be harvested early in the season, typically late spring or early summer so that the actual garlic bulb can form for harvest later in the season. If left to grow, the scapes flower and draw nutrients and flavor away from the actual bulb, leaving the greens as a discarded byproduct. 

Scapes look great, and can be used as a garnish or in a salad, but there are a surprising number of ways you can eat them. You can treat scapes as you would green onions--the difference? The mild garlic flavor and touch of sweetness makes these little wispies an adventurous addition to early summer dishes. 

A big thanks to all of you for returning the black bins each week!

What to expect to find in your bin this week:


Sugar Snap Peas

Snow Peas

Broccoli or Kale

Garlic Scape and Green Garlic

Purple Scallions

Lettuce - Summer Crisp

French Breakfast Radishes


Beyond the Bin additions:



Snow Peas 


Here are a couple of recipes that include items from your bin:  

Green Sugar Snap Peas With Tarragon

PIERRE FRANEY  Time 10 minutes  Yield 4 servings


¾ cup sugar snap peas, trimmed
 Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
2 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon or parsley
⅛ teaspoon ground cumin


In a saucepan, bring to a boil enough water to cover the peas. Add the peas and salt to taste. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes or until they are crisp-tender. Drain immediately.
Return the peas to the saucepan and add the butter, tarragon, cumin, salt and pepper. Stir until the peas are well coated. Serve immediately.

Farro Salad with Peas, Asparagus, and Feta


YIELD: Makes 4 main-course servings
ACTIVE TIME: 15 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 25 minutes


1 1/2 cups semi-pearled farro

12 ounces asparagus, trimmed, cut into 1 1/2-inch lengths
1 8-ounce package sugar snap peas
12 ounces grape tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup chopped red onion
6 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup Sherry wine vinegar
1 7-ounce package feta cheese, crumbled


Cook farro in large saucepan of boiling salted water until just tender, about 10 minutes. Drain. Transfer to large bowl.

Meanwhile, cook asparagus and sugar snap peas in another saucepan of boiling salted water until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Drain. Add to farro with tomatoes, onion, and dill. Whisk oil and vinegar in small bowl. Season dressing with salt and pepper. Add dressing and feta to salad; toss to coat and serve.

market tip:

Farro is an ancient Tuscan grain with a mellow, nutty flavor. You'll find it in some supermarkets, specialty foods stores, and Italian markets.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Week 3 Newsletter 2015

*CSA newsletter written by Adele (Barb's daughter) this week

As six generation cherry growers, my brother and I have a lot to be grateful for. What more could a kid want then a backyard consisting of orchards, woods and freshwater beaches? Today we celebrate Father's Day with our dad. We not only have him to thank for teaching us how to operate a successful farm, but also how to have a good time and truly enjoy the work we do. Growing trees is a unique type of farming, because an orchard can be productive for decades. This means that when a grower plants his orchard, he is making an investment that will have a greater impact on the next generation of growers than on himself. The fruit in your bins might be from trees that Isaiah and I "helped" my dad plant when we were kids or maybe from trees my grandfather planted in the 70s. 

To me, it is incredible that my father, my grandfather and the generations before them maintained our family farm business that involved facing Michigan's capricious weather, economic highs and lows and a myriad of other challenges. Today we are grateful for the guys that raised us, their ingenuity, creativity, optimism and selflessness in creating a place for us to thrive. 

What do you have your dad to thank for? Maybe he taught you the importance of eating well and supporting local business. If so, I guess we should be thanking your pop too! We hope you are getting out and enjoying Michigan's first official week of summer with dad or with him in mind. Enjoy the early-season offerings!

PS We are beginning to see a few pink cherries out there. . . 

Josh and Isaiah, 1989

Jose & Alex packing bok choy

What to expect to find in your bin this week:

Sugar Snap Peas


Purple Scallions


Rat's Tail Radishes

Lettuce -  Green

Lettuce - Red

Mixed Greens

Beyond the Bin this week:


White  Turnips


Stir-Fried Beef and Sugar Snap Peas

  MELISSA CLARK    Time 30 minutes      Yield 4 servings

Here's a stir-fry far better than most take-out Chinese, and you can make it with any lean cut of meat — flank steak, London broil, tenderloin, sirloin or skirt steak — so long as it is cut thin against the grain. Most takeout joints use snow peas, but sugar snaps are juicier and more succulent, and just as crunchy. (Their downside is that they are slightly more work: they need to be thinly sliced.) As for the sauce, it's simple: thick dark soy sauce (tamari works well), sesame oil, chicken broth and Madeira.


1 pound lean beef, cut into 1/4-inch strips
3 tablespoons tamari or dark soy sauce
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil, more for drizzling
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 pound sugar snap peas, trimmed
3 fat scallions
⅔ cup chicken broth
2 ½ tablespoons Madeira or sweet sherry
1 tablespoon cornstarch
3 tablespoons peanut or olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
 Rice, for serving
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds (optional)
 Sriracha or other hot sauce, or rice wine vinegar for garnish
 chili oil, for garnish


In a medium bowl, mix beef, 2 tablespoons tamari, sesame oil, salt and pepper. Set aside.
Thinly slice sugar snap peas crosswise into disks. Thinly slice scallions, reserving dark green parts for garnish.
In a small bowl, mix chicken broth, Madeira, 2 tablespoons water, remaining 1 tablespoon tamari and cornstarch.
Heat a large skillet over high heat. Add 2 tablespoons oil. When pan is hot, stir-fry beef until browned, about 2 minutes. Transfer beef and any liquid to a plate.
Add remaining tablespoon oil to skillet and when hot, add garlic and white and light green scallion parts until lightly browned, about 1 minute. Add sugar snap peas and chicken broth mixture, lower heat to medium and cover. Let cook for 2 minutes. Transfer beef and juices to skillet and stir-fry 2 minutes. Serve over rice, garnished with more sesame oil, sesame seeds, dark parts of scallions, and hot sauce or vinegar and chili oil.

Sautéed Chicken Breasts With Tarragon

  KIM SEVERSON     Time 20 minutes    Yield 6 servings


1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon Madras curry powder
6 large (about 6 ounces each) or 12 small (about 3 ounces each) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
 Kosher salt
 Canola oil
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon minced shallot
¼ cup dry white wine
1 cup chicken stock
1 tablespoon coarsely chopped tarragon plus 1 tablespoon whole tarragon leaves
 Freshly ground black pepper


In a small bowl mix together paprika and curry powder, and sprinkle on both sides of chicken breasts; cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Place 2 breasts on large sheet of plastic wrap, cover with more plastic and pound with a mallet until they are about 1/4-inch thick. Repeat with remaining breasts. (Chicken may be wrapped and refrigerated for up to 12 hours.)
Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Season chicken on both sides with salt. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add enough canola oil to film the bottom of pan. Working in batches, without crowding, place breasts smooth side down and let cook until golden brown, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Turn and cook for another 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Transfer to a baking sheet and keep warm in oven.
Wipe out skillet and return to medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon of butter and shallot, and sauté for 30 seconds, swirling pan to coat shallot with butter. Add wine, raise heat to medium-high, and cook until wine is reduced by half, about 1 minute. Add stock, bring to boil, and cook until reduced and slightly thickened, 1 to 2 minutes.
Stir in chopped tarragon, remaining 2 tablespoons butter, and any juices that have accumulated on baking sheet. Swirl to melt butter, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Arrange chicken on a warmed platter, pour sauce over it, and garnish with whole tarragon leaves.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Week 2 Newsletter 2015

Happy Flag Day!

I hope enjoyed your first bin and are dreaming about what will be arriving from the garden this week.
It has been a cool and rather wet few days, the transplants are adjusting well and the direct seeded vegetables keep pushing their way out of the soil. It is true, no 2 years are just alike when it comes to farming!

The strawberries are coming along. The frost on May 20th did knock back the first berries and it looks we should be able to start picking berries by the end of next week. I did find a couple of red berries in the patch this week that were small and scarred by the frost. It is a good thing that berries keep producing more blossoms throughout late spring.

This week the main garden and hoophouse were heavily weeded. We are not going to let those pesky weeds win! It was also a week to plant some of the warm loving plants including basil, melons and cucumbers. The first zucchini plants are blooming and the winter squash are starting to show their 3rd leaf.

What to expect to find in your bin this week:

Bok Choy

White Turnips


Lettuce Heads

Mixed Salad Greens




Here a couple of recipes that include items that you will have in your bin this week:

Sautéed Baby Bok Choy

  SAM SIFTON            Time   15 minutes                       Yield    Serves 4


2 tablespoons neutral cooking oil, like canola
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1 ½-inch piece ginger root, peeled and minced
 ¼ teaspoon red-pepper flakes, or to taste
4 bunches of baby bok choy, approximately 1½ pounds, cleaned, with the ends trimmed
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon chicken stock or water
 Toasted sesame oil for drizzling


In a large sauté pan with a lid, heat oil over medium-high heat until it starts to shimmer. Add garlic, ginger and red-pepper flakes and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 45 seconds.
Add bok choy and stir carefully to cover with oil, then cook for approximately 2 minutes. Add soy sauce, stock or water, then cover pan and cook for approximately 2 minutes more, until steam begins to escape from beneath the lid of the pan.
Uncover and continue to cook until liquid is close to evaporated and stalks are soft to the touch, approximately 3 minutes more.

Remove to a warmed platter and drizzle with sesame oil.

Skillet Chicken With Rhubarb

  MELISSA CLARK        Time1 hour, plus 1 hour standing               Yield 4 servings

In this savory skillet dinner, rhubarb, onions and garlic are simmered with white wine and butter into a rich sauce for browned chicken parts. I call for a whole, cut-up chicken here, so you’ll have the different parts to choose from at the table. (Just be sure to watch the breasts carefully; they might finish cooking before the dark meat.) But you can use your favorite chicken part instead. Thighs and drumsticks work particularly well. This dish goes nicely with polenta, which also helps brighten the rather drab color of the brightly flavored sauce.


1 (5 1/2-pound) whole chicken, cut into eight pieces
1 tablespoon plus 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, more as needed
1 teaspoon black pepper, more as needed
5 sprigs thyme, preferably lemon thyme
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 bunch spring onions or scallions, white and light green stalks thinly sliced (slice and reserve greens for garnish)
2 stalks green garlic, thinly sliced, or 2 garlic cloves, minced
½ cup dry white wine
¾ pound fresh rhubarb, cut into 1/2-inch dice (3 cups)
1 tablespoon honey, or to taste
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces


Pat chicken dry and season with 1 tablespoon salt and 1 teaspoon pepper. Place in a bowl with the thyme sprigs and cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate at least 1 hour or overnight.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Remove thyme from bowl with chicken, reserving thyme. Add chicken pieces to skillet and sear, turning occasionally, until golden brown all over, about 10 minutes. Transfer pieces to a platter.
Reduce heat to medium. Stir in onion (white and light green parts) and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and reserved thyme; cook 1 minute more. Stir in wine and bring to a simmer, scraping up any browned bits in the bottom of pan. Add rhubarb, honey, 1/2 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of pepper.
Return chicken pieces to pot in a single layer. Cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer until chicken is cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes for breasts and 20 to 25 minutes for legs and thighs, transferring chicken pieces to a platter as they finish cooking.

Whisk butter into rhubarb sauce. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Spoon sauce over chicken and garnish with sliced onion greens.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Week 1 Newsletter 2015

Welcome to the 2015 season of the Peak Season CSA!

The first delivery of the season is here and is always exhilarating. It is also the time of planting, planting and more planting. Then taking a step back to see what is ready to put into the Week 1 bins. It is just the beginning of the season and the early boxes are a gradual build-up to the bountiful bins that come together in deep summer and the hefty crops that arrive in the fall.

Eating with the seasons, as well as eating locally, may be new to some of you. It can be frustrating, intimidating and overwhelming when you are just starting out with bins of fresh produce.

Hopefully, the weekly newsletter will provide you with information to make it easier and to inspire you to try some new things that will work for you and fit into your lifestyle.

We welcome your ideas and recipes so that we can share them with other members of the CSA.

It is important to us that you get to know our farm and get to know us as your farmers. This is partly what the CSA connection is all about. Of course, the other part is about great locally grown fresh produce! Check out this link from Fair Share CSA Coalition  in Madison: How to be a Great CSA Member

There are many ways to connect with our farm: the weekly newsletter, Facebook, visit with Adele at the Sarah Hardy Farm Market on Saturday and farm events.
Green garlic (also called spring garlic) is one of the first seasonal items to pop up in farmer’s markets. The immature garlic bulbs and edible green stalks have an amazing nutty-oniony flavor that is great fresh or cooked. Substitute green garlic in recipes for onions, scallions or leeks. The young, tender cloves don’t need to be peeled before chopping. Slice and use in potato salad or mince and stir into salad dressings. Toss some in a stir-fry, on a pizza, or in soups. The light garlicky flavor enhances dishes without overpowering. One stalk and bulb of spring garlic is equivalent to a small onion, or a leek an one clove of mature garlic.

Here is what to expect to find in the Week 1 bin:





White Turnips

Green Garlic


Twin Farms Maple Syrup

Here are a couple of recipe ideas for the items you will find in your bin this week.



The small, round, mild white turnips known colloquially as Japanese turnips are at their most delicious when simply cooked with their greens. A last-minute swirl in miso butter (which is fantastic on pretty much any vegetable) gives them an almost meaty underpinning.

YIELD: Makes 4 servings
TOTAL TIME: 30 min


3 tablespoons white miso

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened, divided
3 pounds small (1 1/2-to 2-inch) Japanese turnips with greens
1 1/3 cups water
2 tablespoons mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine)


Stir together miso and 2 tablespoon butter.

Discard turnip stems and coarsely chop leaves. Halve turnips (leave whole if tiny) and put in a 12-inch heavy skillet along with water, mirin, remaining tablespoon butter, and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then boil, covered, 10 minutes.

Add greens by handfuls, turning and stirring with tongs and adding more as volume in skillet reduces. Cover and cook 1 minute. Uncover and continue boiling, stirring occasionally, until turnips are tender and liquid is reduced to a glaze, about 5 minutes. Stir in miso butter and cook 1 minute.

Angel Hair Pasta with Chive Blossom Cream Sauce

Melt 3 Tbsp of butter along with some minced garlic, then sprinkle 2 Tbsp flour to make a roux. Cook for a few minutes, stirring, then add 2 cups of chicken stock or broth, whisking until well blended. Cook for five minutes or until reduced by one-third, then add ¼ cup of sour cream and whisk until smooth.

Add a handful of chopped fresh chives and chive blossoms, then toss with one pound cooked angel hair pasta.