Provider Farm

From our fields, for your family

Shareholders

June 7, 2020

Welcome all to the first share of the season! It's going to look a little different this year but there is a ton of food in the field and we can't wait to get it to you. Coogan Farm shareholders, let me know if you had any issue with pick up. You already should have received an email on your logistics for pick up so I won't include it again here.

 

Details for Salem share pick ups:

Pick ups start this week, Tuesday June 7 or Friday June 12. Pick ups are 12-7 for both boxed shares or scheduled pick ups.

 

Scheduled pick ups: 

This option will allow you to come in to the share room and pick out your share. 

 

When scheduling your pick up slot, do not forget to click the submit button after you click on the time slot you would like. It will then ask you to give your name and email address. If you do not enter this information, submit it and recieve a confirmation screen, you have not successfully signed up for a slot.

 

Click here to watch a tutorial on how to schedule your pick up slot.

 

Click here to schedule your pick up time.

 

We will see how this goes and make changes as needed. Let us know what you think or if you can't find a slot that works for you.

 

We will provide bags but you may want to bring a bag or box to carry everything in as the season progresses and things  get more abundant (and heavier) 

 

Share room staff will ask you for your name to check you in and happily answer questions for you.

 

Boxed share pick up:

 

You will receive an email confirming you have signed up for this option. If you do not receive it please email me to add you to the list. 

 

The pick up for this option will be in our old milking parlor, the building you first see when you pull into the back parking area on the right. We will have signs up to direct you.

 

Please make sure to take the correct box size. There will be check off sheets for each box size, just find your name on the sheet and check off your name (we will have plenty of clean pens and sanitize them regularly, or you may bring your own). You may repack your box in the car and leave the box on the returned box pallet or bring it back next week.

 

Other important information

 

Click here for Share FAQs

 

Watch a quick video on picking up your share here

 

Please park across the road from the driveway to the yellow house or in the parking area behind the barns, but do not pull into the driveway to the big yellow house. 

 

If you are splitting a share, please only have 1 person come to pick up the share per week. You may alternate weeks or split it at home.

 

Pleae only have 1 person come into the share room per share.

 

Please don't come to pick up your share if you are not feeling well. You can always send someone else to pick up your share. Just explain to them the procdure.

 

Please respect social distancing norms and give everyone at least 6 feet in space. The floors will be marked with 6 foot markers to help you see this. The share room will be staffed and you may be asked to wait if the share room is at capacity. Waiting areas outside will be flagged with 6 ft. distancing flags.

 

Please wear your masks and sanitize your hands prior to entering share pick up areas. There will sanitizer at entrances and exits.

 

We love you all and love to see folks chatting, but please have your conversations outside of the sharerooms to keep the share flowing.

 

If you would like to purchase meat, please email me at least 1 day in advance to put in your order. We will only be selling beef by preorder. You can find the price list here.

 

If you absolutly can not make it to your scheduled time, please call or text me 860-222-5582 as soon as you can and I can put your share out for you at an agreed upon time. If you are away for the week we always encourage you to have someone else pick it up. Just explain to them the procedure so they know what to do.

 

Thank you so much to everyone for going with the flow on all this! I know it has not been easy, we are all tired of this, and its really just not that fun, but its really important to keep everyone healthy, so we really appreciate your vigilance and patience as we work out the kinks in our new systems.

This Week's Share

The scheduled pick up will provide some choice between items and not necesarily all items.

Salem Boxed Share notes: 

The small boxed share will receive: potatoes, bok choi, radishes, lettuce, chard, salad mix.

The regular boxed share will receive: potatoes, bok choi, radishes, turnips, lettuce,  chard, salad mix.

The large boxed share will receive: potatoes, radish, bok choi, radishes, turnips, lettuce, salad mix, arugula, chard, kale.

Welcome, welcome to the wonderful world of CSA vegetables. Feeding people vegetables really makes me happy. I really believe in the power of vegetables to make the world a better place. It's why I farm. I can't see a whole lot wrong with a vegetable. 

But I will admit, eating vegetables can be hard. It takes work to bring home your share and scrub and chop everything, and on top of that, cook it. Don't worry, we have tips, lots and lots of tips to make this whole thing a little bit easier. You will probably start to enjoy it and then when it's all over in the fall, you will miss it when you have to head back to the drudgery of the grocery store produce aisle.

My point being, we are here for you! Hannah and Marycia staff our Salem pick ups and they know everything about these crops and how to store and cook them. When we list what is in the share every week, if you click on a specific crop, its a hyper link to information on storage and use and recipes (all of these things are on our website). We include tips on incoming crops in the newsletter and a recipe usually focusing on one of those crops. If you are still at a loss, please email me and I'll do my best to help you out. Furthermore, we're here for each other! If you find an excellent recipe, please share it to our website here. And if you have any tips you want to share with me, please do! Especially longtime shareholders, what have you found that works for you?

So let's get started. We recommend processing your share right when you get home with it. Here are a few general tips on how to process, store, and cook your share:

  • Wash your greens  by swishing them loosely in a bowl of water. Drain the water and do it again. Become good friends with your salad spinner and spin them as dry as you can. Greens store best when they are dry. Store them in an air tight container or bag with a towel in the fridge.
  • Bunched roots will store best if you remove them from the greens. Treat the greens as you would greens. Scrub the roots clean and store them in an air tight bag or container. Don't store them loose in the fridge or they will lose moisture and get soft. You can prechop them for recipes if you want to get fancy.
  • You might find at first learning to cook with all these veggies can be a challenge but I am confident everyone can do it! Start by just adding more veggies to what you are already doing. Pasta and sauce? Throw some greens in that sauce and have a green salad on the side with it.
  • Try not to focus on individual vegetable recipes, but meals that can incorporate many different types of veggies. Develop some recipes that your whole family loves and you can bang out in a half hour. These are so helpful to have in your back pocket when you want to just get take out because you're dead tired. Post them on the fridge to help you remember its quicker to cook then do drive to get food and bring it back home.
  • The internet is chock full of recipes, so if you are a loss, you can always try there. There are a ton of cooking blogs and instagram pages too where I get lots of ideas. I like Food 52Love and Lemons, and thekitchn.

Every week I will do my best to guess what will be in the share and list it here. Sometimes I am on the nose, sometimes a crop or two I thought we would have goes by, or surprise!, something new comes into the mix before we expected it. Please note the listed crops are hyperlinks and if you click on them, you can get info on storage and preparation of each crop along with recipes.

So let's dive into the share this week! The first share of the season is always about greens--salad greens, cooking greens and lettuce. The first greens of the season are always the best in my opinion, sweet, tender, and crisp so eat em up as big salad entrees before the heat starts to add a touch of bitterness to them.

Have you ever had a Hakurei turnip? If you haven't, you're in for a treat. These are no Thanksgiving turnips. These little ping pong ball like roots are sweet and crispy and intended to be eaten raw sliced into a salad. You're gonna love em. Save the tops and cook them up like you would any cooking green. One of my favorite recipes for greens is this greens pie. You can really put just about anything green in it.

Kohlrabi might creep into the share by the end of the week. These alien like veggies may be new to you. There bulb is crispy and sweet, peel it up and chop it into a salad, and the greens are great cooked up.

Recipe of the Week: 

Bok Choi stir fry

Ingredients: 
  • chopped scallions, onions, garlic, or garlic scapes, any combo, about 1/2 cup
  • one bunch bok choi, washed and chopped
  • 1/2 c. chopped mushrooms
  • oil
  • 1 block firm tofu, or other protein
  • soy sauce
  • rice wine vinegar
  • toasted sesame oil
  • siracha, if you like
Directions: 

Drain tofu and wrap in towels and press with some heavy books to remove additional moisture. You can do this several hours in advance, or if you are like me, 15 minutes in advance.
Cube tofu and toss with a couple glugs of soy sauce, rice wine vinegar and about a teaspoon of sesame oil. Add a squirt of siracha if you like. Let marinate while you chop veggies.
Heat oil in wok or other deep pan and add garlic and onion. Fry for a couple of minutes and add tofu or other protein. Cook until tofu begins to brown or protein is cooked through. Add mushrooms and cook for a couple minutes and then add bok choi and cook until bok choi is wilted. Season with soy sauce and vinegar and cook a few more minutes. Turn off heat and add a couple teaspoons of sesame oil.

Credit: 
Kerry

Its better, together.

The youngest member of the crew getting the melon transplanting going.
The youngest member of the crew getting the melon transplanting going.

Dear Friends,

After what has undoubtedly been one of the toughest springs I can ever remember, we are so thrilled to finally see the fields fill with food and have the CSA start again. Every year comes with its own unique challenges.

 

We have had some challenging springs in the past. There is probably no feeling that can compare to the unique stress and uncertainty of our very first season. In 2012, we had to frantically rebuild our production green house after it collapsed in a late February blizzard. We’ve had wet springs and dry springs. We had to go through an entire spring with Shep in the NICU where we left the farm every day at 3pm so we could spend as much time as possible at the hospital with him.

 

This season has been unique and at times completely daunting and arduous. The new normal that Covid-19 has created has made things difficult for everyone, we have been grateful to be able to keep working and to be able to continue to provide employment for our crew. Along with the weight of the daily news, the weather this spring has totally sucked, if I may be so blunt. We have had what I thought were cold springs before, but nothing like this. I have never spent so much time shivering on the tractor in my life. I wore my winter coat almost daily through the end of May after not really wearing it at all this winter. The cold and the wind definitely make it hard for us to get excited about getting into the fields but they also slow the plant’s growth considerably. We found our crops being a week behind almost across the board. While this isn’t the end of the world, there is something that particularly demoralizing about fixing row cover (basically a giant plant blanket) on a blustery 38 degree day in May.

 

As we marched through May and into June, we finally saw the days warm up, the crops began to grow and it started to look as though we would in fact have food again. There is a lot of comfort in the familiar and a lot of comfort in good, healthy food. Farming can be a very grounding activity in general, it provides our lives with a very tangible and real sense of purpose. I hadn’t realized how much I had missed the routine of harvesting until this Friday when we were harvesting for our first Mystic share distribution and I had the familiar comfort of a harvest knife in my hand.

 

It never ceases to amaze me how plants just want to grow. It’s what they do. Everywhere we look the fields are bursting with wonderful produce. So many heads of lettuce, turnips, radishes, and bok choi all ready to be harvested with so many great crops on the way. It’s wonderful to have veggies to eat again. Having produce to eat again doesn’t solve all of our problems and it certainly doesn’t make the Corona virus go away but it is certainly helpful for me to have one less thing to worry about. Although with so many crops to monitor and weed, we actually have a lot more things to worry about

 

Life is different for all of us now. We know the CSA isn’t going to be the same this year. So many of our favorite parts of having a CSA farm involve the personal human connection. Seeing children grow up eating our produce and picking out vegetables with their parents is one thing in particular I will miss this year.

 

A common refrain through our first year of farming was "the only way out is through" and so we return to that. We trudge forward but it's a whole lot better with you along for the ride. We appreciate so much your support and we are looking forward to many, many weeks of bountiful produce.

 

Your farmers,

Bonnie, Erica, Hannah, Jordan, Kerry, Larry, Marycia, Max, Meredith, and Tori

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