Provider Farm

From our fields, for your family


October 19, 2018

Just two more weeks of the share to go. The last share pick ups are Oct. 30 and Nov.2 for Salem  and Oct. 31 for Terra Firma Farm pick ups. Where did all the time go? It seams like just  a minute ago we had our first share distribution.   We were just remenisicing on the spring plant sale which at the same time feels like it was forever ago.

We still have winter shares available and are happy to receive your renewals for the summer share. Forms are available in the share room or on our website.


The Provider Farm 7th Annual Thanksgiving Store!

Nov. 17, 10-1 PM

Come on by and pick up all the vegetables you will need for your Thanksgiving table! Roots and greens galore and squash for pies and to adorne your holiday table. Open to the public. Shareholders receive 10% off all vegetables.

Also, the second annual Provider Farm Christmas Store

Dec. 22, 1-4 PM

Pick up veggies for your holiday table. Looking for a special hostess gift? How about a veggie basket, or selection of grassfed beef cuts. Have some one hard to buy for? Food always makes a great no clutter gift!



This Week's Share

Lots new this week! Some odd ball roots coming your way. Parsnips, a carrot cousin, were dug up last week. These creamy white roots have a distinctive buttery flavor and floral smell. They are fantastic roasted or used in soups and stews. Rutabagas are also coming out of the field. These are one of my favorites in the turnipy realm. In  the grocery store, they are waxed balls, often mislabeled as a turnip. Ours are fresh out of the field, purple on top and cream colored on the bottom. They have a mild nutty cabbagy flavor and are great in soups, roasts. boiled or mashed. (yeh, there's a theme here).

One of our more unusual roots is the purple storage radish. These guys are lavender on the outside and if you make slices of them, they show a beautiful lavender starburst. They are sweet, mild and crunchy and really fantastic in winter salads and slaws, or quick pickled for sandwiches.

Our escaroles are frost sweetened and ready for the share. This is an Italian classic, and is delicious cooked or made into a salad. At this time of year, I am way more interested in cooked greens then salads with the exception of an escarole salad. One of the best fall salads ever is escarole ribs with sliced apples or pears, toasted walnuts and blue cheese with a balsamic vinaigrette. I look forward to the fall escarole every year just for this salad. If you prefer to cook your escarole, check out the recipe of the week.

Tis the season for pumpkins and we'll have them in the share this week. Our pie pumpkins are the kind of pumpkin you make a pie with (not jack o' lantern types, they are watery). They are dual purpose, adorn your door step (just remember to take them in if there is a freeze) and then take them in for pie. The seeds are also delicious roasted with some salt (my toddler eats them all, none for us). You may also see some long term storage types squashes in the share including hubbards, Long Island Cheese pumkins and a new one for us, the large banana shaped Georgia candy roaster. All are notoriously good for pies, sweeten the longer they store, and are good for all things squash in the kitchen.

Last but not least, cabbages! A true New England winter staple so you can have something crunchy through the winter. Time for slaws with chili or try your hand at Sauerkraut. One of my favorite uses for cabbage is topping tacos. Try it on egg tacos with some cheese, sliced onion, cilantro and siracha on a soft corn tortilla-the best breakfast in the world! This year's cabbages are a bit smaller due to the incessant rain but good and will store well into winter if you wrap it in an air tight container or bag in your fridge.


Recipe of the Week: 

Escarole and white beans

  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon sliced garlic
  • 1 fresh or dried chili, stemmed, seeded and minced, or 1 teaspoon dried red chili flakes, or to taste
  • 1 pound escarole, radicchio, endive or other bitter green, trimmed, washed and dried
  • 1 cup cooked white beans
  • 3 cups chicken stock or water
  • Salt and pepper to taste

1.Put half the oil in a large, deep skillet or casserole and turn heat to medium. Put half the garlic in oil, with chilies. Stir occasionally until garlic begins to color. Add escarole and stir; add beans and stock or water and adjust heat so mixture simmers steadily. Cover.
2. Cook about 15 minutes, or until escarole is tender. Stir in rest of garlic and cook another minute, then taste and adjust seasoning, drizzle with reserved olive oil, and serve. Serve over pasta or with a crusty bread.


Frosty fingers, frosty toes, frosty fields, frosty nose

Beautiful parsnips on a crisp fall day.
Beautiful parsnips on a crisp fall day.

Dear Friends,


It’s finally happened. Despite the strange foibles this season has thrown at us, the first frost of the year settled into the farm right about on schedule. Not especially early and not especially late. Mid-October is right about when we expect to get the first frost. We were fairly well prepared to begin with, but we still had a bit to do to get the farm frost ready. The lettuce and salad mix out in the field had to be covered with hoops and row cover.  With that completed, we spent a bit of time stripping peppers off the plants. Peppers are extremely frost sensitive and they can’t handle the chill. But the plants were still laden with some pretty nice peppers so we harvested as much as we could, rather than let them waste away out in the cold.


With the farm as prepared as it’s going to get, we turned our attention back to the bulk harvests. We spent many days digging potatoes in unusual muggy and warm weather. The strange sensation of bulk picking in a sauna was a distant memory as we began digging the parsnips this week. Bright, crisp and cool, fall was certainly in the air. Usually we pick the parsnips absolutely last, but due to excessively high deer pressure in the field they were in, we decided to get to them before the deer could.


With the parsnips done we turned our attention to the ever popular purple daikon. One thousand pounds of purple daikon later and we were looking for our next task. We’re making quick work of the bulk harvests, getting more cover crop seeded and enjoying the cooler weather. There is still garlic to plant, cabbage and carrots to harvest and rye to seed but we’re feeling pretty good. The sox won the pennant and are world series bound, the cover crops are looking lush and lovely, and our coolers are filling fast.


Your farmers,


Anthony, Erica, Hannah, Holly, Kerry, Larry and Max

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