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September 7, 2019

This Week's Share

Out with the old and in with the new No more tomatoes and melons, but here comes the winter squash! Most winter squash has to spend several weeks curing and converting their starches to sugars before we can eat them, but not the spaghetti squash. These are ready to eat straight out of the field. Bake these up in the oven and then scrape the spaghetti like strands out. You can eat them with marinara or a simple pat of butter.

 

There are a few once a year crops and Brussels sprouts tops are one of them. Every year at this time we go through the Brussels sprouts and break off their growing points to encourage sprout development. Lucky for us, the tops are also delicious and trending in the most swanky farm to table restaurants. They are tender and saute up great with some garlic. One of my favs!

 

The garlic has been cured and sorted and is ready to eat! Its delish, put it in everything. ‘Nuff said.

Recipe of the Week: 

Spaghetti squash casserole

Ingredients: 
  • 1 spaghetti squash
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 fresh tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 pound mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup cottage or ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella
  • parmesan for topping
  • 1 cup fine bread crumbs
  • oregano, parsley, basil, thyme, and other herbs to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste
Directions: 

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Halve the squash and scoop out seeds. Bake face down on oiled sheet until it is easily pierced by a
fork, about 30 min. Let stand until cool enough to handle, then scoop out pulp and place in large bowl.
3. Meanwhile, heat butter and sauté onions, garlic, and mushrooms with herbs, salt and pepper. When
onions are soft, add tomatoes and continue to cook until most of the liquid evaporates.
4. Stir this mixture into squash pulp with remaining ingredients except parmesan.
5. Spread into buttered 2-quart casserole. Top with parmesan.
6. Bake uncovered, 30-40 minutes. Makes 4-6 servings.

Credit: 
Moosewood Cookbook by Mollie Katzen

Fortune favors the bold

Sure feels good to have all of the winter squash tucked away!
Sure feels good to have all of the winter squash tucked away!

Dear Friend,

 

I asked for it and I got it. Fall came sweeping in with an abrupt determination. I don’t remember a year where the seasons changed with a clear delineation. Usually summer and fall flow into each other. They ebb and flow. We usually pick the winter squash on a sweltering 90 degree day in September. The first potatoes and sweets are usually brought in under humid, sunny skies. But not this year. The calendar changed and so did the season.

 

We went into this week with a simple plan. Harvest all the winter squash and get enough sweet potatoes out of the field so they can start to cure. Not too much to ask right? However some very uncertain forecasts made it difficult to make plan. When you can’t make a plan, it’s hard to execute. With all that being said, fortune favors the bold, and we just decided to go for it and hope for the best.

 

We lost most of Labour day to the CSA harvest as we were short staffed and Shep was home. Tuesday we hit the ground running. To harvest the winter squash the first thing you have to do is go through and clip all the squash off the vine and place them in rows. After that is done they have to sit overnight to cure a bit before they can be packed into bins. We spent our Tuesday taking an acres worth of chaos turning it into 8 neat and tidy rows of squash.

 

With all the squash ready to pick up we were chomping at the bit to get them loaded up Wednesday morning. However, due to the dew, we had to put a pin in that. While we waited for the squash to dry we decided to start digging sweet potatoes. We don’t typically try and harvest two storage crops simultaneously. It’s like fighting a war on two fronts. Or trying to play the saxophone while you’re swimming. Even thinking about it makes my heart beat a bit quicker but nonetheless that was what we decided to do on Wednesday.

 

In typical fashion, on Wednesday morning I woke up in a total panic at 4am unsure of how we were going to get it all done, and wondering why we bit of such a big bite. Also in typical fashion, our crew absolutely crushed it. We were able to get over 2,000 pounds of sweet potatoes harvested before 10am on Wednesday. By that point the squash was dry and we were off to the races,

 

When all was said and done we brought in around 18,000 pounds of winter squash, harvested the first bed of sweets, got everything safely stored away and even finished the day a little early. While the sweets and most of the winter squash have to cure, the first winter squash will be showing it’s face in the share this week. Happy fall!

 

Your farmers,

 

Bill, Bonnie, Erica, Hannah, Kerry, Larry, Marycia and Max

 

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