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FarmShare C.S.A. Newsletter week of Sept. 3, 2013

This week’s share:


Jersey Mac, Paula Red, McIntosh, Tydeman Red Apples

Stone fruit medley: Peaches, nectarines and plums






Cherry Tomato mix-Sungolds, Black Cherry, Washington Cherry, Gold nugget

Field Tomato

Green beans

Lettuce Mix

Yellow and/or Red storage onions


Storage, handling and general cooking tips:


Storage and handling

Storage onions are the quite pungent, which cooks away to reveal a sweet flavor. These onions will keep in any cool, dark, dry place with adequate air circulation for several months.

To reduce onion-cutting induced tears use a very sharp knife and try chilling your onion before cutting it. If you encounter a little rot in your onion, remember it is not the kiss of death, just cut away the bad sections and use the rest.


Take care when handling your raspberries – they are very fragile and perishable. If you do not plan to eat your berries today, store them unwashed in your refrigerator on a plate. Raspberries will keep in the refrigerator for one or two days. When you are ready to enjoy your berries, give them a gentle wash and pat dry. To help prevent spoilage, keep berries out of the sun and do not leave out on the counter for more than two hours.

Raspberries freeze very well. Wash them gently and pat dry with a paper towel. Arrange them in a single layer on a cookie sheet and place them in the freezer. Once frozen, pop them in a labeled freezer container. They will keep for one year.

Raspberries are chock full of vitamins C and K as well as antioxidant and anti-inflammatory phytonutrients. Add some berries to your morning yogurt or pancakes!


Storage and Handling

Apples should be kept uncovered or in a perforated plastic bag in the refrigerator. Warm temperatures will cause apples to lose their crispness and flavor, so if they are kept out of the refrigerator, make sure it is in a cool, ventilated place far from direct sunlight. To prevent cut apples from turning brown, sprinkle with lemon juice or soak them in a bowl of ½ cup water and 2 tbsp lemon juice.


Storage and Handling

Melon can keep up to a week, whole and uncut, into your fridge. IF your melon has been sitting in your car and its a hot day, let it cool off before sticking it right into the fridge, as the drastic temperature change will cause the fruit to spoil faster. Melons can be eaten cut up, wrapped in salty, cured meats, in fruit salad, or even sliced and grilled.


Storage and Handling

Peaches bruise easily, so when testing for ripe-ness use your whole hand, not just one finger. Leave peaches out, on the counter. If they need to ripen more, place in a closed paper bag. Once ripe, store in the crisper bin of your refrigerator where they’ll keep for up to five  days. Peaches can also be frozen. Peel and slice them, lay them on a baking tray and stick in the freezer for a few hours until they’re frozen through. Transfer the peach wedges to a resealable plastic bag and freeze until ready to use. They’ll keep at least 6 months (longer in a free-standing freezer) and are perfect to use in baking. Want to peel your peaches? Here’s how: Cut a small “x” in the bottom of each peach. Dip them in boiling water for 30 seconds, and the skins will slide right off.

Cook tips

Eat these guys fresh, rinsed and wiped to remove fuzz. Or bake into a crumble. Or put in your morning cereal. Or serve with almond essence infused whipped cream as almonds are a close cousin to peaches. Delicious in savory dishes as well, you can grill them and put in a salad, can be made into a chutney alongside your pork or beef, or preserve them to be enjoyed mid-winter. There are endless options.


Storage and Handling 

Corn is best when eaten right away, before the sugars turn to starch, and diminish its sweet taste. This is mostly true for eating corn right off the cob, but after 4 days, corn will still be edible and tasty enough to cook with. Corn should be refrigerated with the husks still on. The husks will preserve that milky moisture in the kernels. Keep them in the crisper drawer without any strong smelling foods, as corn will easily absorb those odors.

Cook tips

Try eating your corn raw – when it’s fresh like this, it’s yummy! My kids love to pick an ear off the stalk, shuck it in the field, and chomp away. To cook your corn, boil it in water for about 4-6 minutes, depending on how soft you like it. Last night, I cooked it for just 3 minutes then let it steam in the pot until the rest of dinner was ready a few minutes later. It was perfectly cooked and just popped off the cob! Corn is best when eaten simply: boil, slather with butter, and sprinkle with salt. Do you twirl your corn and eat around the cob or lengthwise like a typewriter? In our family, I’m the typewriter.

Corn is also delicious grilled. Pull back the corn husks without removing them fully, remove the silks, then pull the husks back up and soak for at least 15 minutes in water. Grill corn in its husks (maybe brush some pesto on the corn before pulling up the husks), turning occasionally until charred about 20 minutes.  Corn is super versatile. Think: creamed corn, corn bread, corn chowder, salsa, succotash, or as a topping to salad.


Storage + Handling Tips

Tomatoes bruise easily, so handle them with care. They are best stored at room temperature, out of direct sunlight, stem-side down. Keep them away from your bananas and onions to avoid decay and icky taste. Never refrigerate tomatoes! The cold renders tomatoes mealy and flavorless. Eat them within a few days.

You can also freeze tomatoes. There is no need to peel or blanch them beforehand. Once thawed, the tomato skins will slip easily off. Simply rinse and dry the tomatoes thoroughly, then place in freezer bags. You can suck any air out of the bag with a straw. Frozen tomatoes are great for cooked dishes.

Fresh tomatoes are yummy sliced and layered with mozzerella cheese, basil, olive oil and salt. They work wonders for burgers, wraps, pastas and salad.

Green beans

Storage + Handling

Store dry green beans in a perforated plastic bag in the refrigerator. They are best eaten soon after picking, but can keep for 5 days or so. Wash beans thoroughly in cool water before eating.

Beans can be cooked whole, cut crosswise, diagonally, or French-cut (sliced along the length of the bean). Many say that preparing beans with a French-cut yields the most tender and sweet taste. Perhaps that’s true, but remember that beans retain the most nutrients when cooked uncut. Green beans are rich in protein, fiber, iron, and Vitamins C and A. They are also high in beta carotene, which is most commonly associated with carrots. Some say you can lower your cholesterol levels by 12% just by eating a cup of beans a day!

The easiest way to prepare beans is to steam them. First trim the ends of the beans. I like to have my son do this step. He just snaps the ends with his fingers. It gets him involved in the meal and he ends up eating a few along the way! Next, steam the beans for about 8 minutes, or until they have turned bright green and are just tender. Drain and place in a bowl to toss with butter and salt and pepper.

Many people like to stir-fry green beans. This method retains more nutrients than other cooking methods. Stir fry beans with garlic and some cherry tomatoes for a beautiful and tasty side dish. Whatever cooking method you choose, remember to cook beans as little as possible, using the least amount of water possible, as beans release nutrients into the water. If you boil your beans, why not re-use the bean water to cook rice and thereby regain some of those nutrients?


Storage and Handling

The best way to store cucumbers is surprisingly, not in the fridge! Cucumbers are very temperature sensitive, especially if kept below 50 degrees. Cucumbers can be damaged by cold and become watery, pitting on the side, and accelerated decay. Stick them on your counter but keep them away from tomatoes, melons, and bananas which give off ethylene gas which will cause the cucumber to spoil faster.

Cook tips

Although usually eaten raw or pickled, cucumbers are delicious in light soups and even better braised. Slice off the skin or leave it on, its all about preference.

Salad Greens

Storage and Handling

Store unwashed lettuce or mesclun in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. To store lettuce or greens that you have already washed and dried, roll the leaves loosely in a kitchen towel, put the towel in a plastic bag, and place the package in the vegetable crisper bin.  Wet greens will spoil quickly, so make sure they are truly dry before refrigerating them.  If you have a salad spinner, wash and spin the greens before refrigerating them.  Eat mesclun mix within three or four days, and use lettuce within a week.

Salad greens bruise easily, so be sure to handle them gently.  For lettuce, slice the head at its base with a sharp knife and let the leaves fall open.  Discard any damaged or leathery outer leaves and tear large leaves into bite sized pieces.  Both lettuce and mesclun mix can be washed by swishing them around in a basin of cold water.  If a lot of dirt collects in the water, wash them a second time.  Dry the greens in a salad spinner, or if you don’t have one, place them loosely in a mesh bag or thin towel, then go outside and swing them around your head.


Tomato and White bean salad

adapted from Family Table
Serves 3 to 4 as a side

1/2 cup finely chopped shallot (1 large or 2 small)
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar (+ more as needed)
extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup bread crumbs (optional)
2-3 medium tomatoes (about 1 pound)
1 15-ounce can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1/2 cup torn basil leaves, loosely packed

Mix chopped shallots and 2 tablespoons vinegar in a large bowl and set aside to marinate for 1 to 2 hours, stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile, toast breadcrumbs, if using —they added a little crunch to the salad. Heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium-low flame. Add the breadcrumbs and toss to coat with oil. Toast until golden, 3 to 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Watch carefully. They will remain stubbornly pale and then suddenly darken. Transfer to a small bowl to cool.

When shallots have marinated, prepare tomatoes. Core and cut into 3/4- to 1-inch cubes. Add to bowl with shallots and gently stir to combine. Add drained cannellini beans and 1/4 cup olive oil; season with salt and pepper and gently stir to combine. Gently stir in basil and some of the breadcrumbs. (Noticing a lot of gentle here? You don’t want to beat up the tomatoes.)

Taste and add more vinegar or oil and salt and pepper as needed. The more vinegar you add the more bite there will be. Top with some more breadcrumbs and serve immediately.

Sweet Corn, Bacon, and Tomato Salad

Serves 4 – 6.

4 slices of thick-cut bacon
1 medium onion, diced (about 1 cup)
cut kernels from 4 ears of corn (about 2 cups)
3 cups halved cherry tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
salt, to taste
fresh ground black pepper, to taste

In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp.  Remove bacon to a plate and set aside. Turn heat down to medium-low and add onions to the bacon drippings in the skillet.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion has softened – about 5 minutes.  Add corn, turn heat back up to medium, and cook, stirring occasionally, until corn is tender and just starting to brown in spots – about 7 – 10 minutes.  Remove corn and onion mixture to a large mixing bowl and let cool for about 10 minutes.  Meanwhile, cut the bacon crosswise into thin slices.  Add the sliced tomatoes, bacon, basil, and vinegar to the bowl with the corn.  Sprinkle in a big pinch of salt and some fresh ground black pepper.  Toss everything together, let sit for a few minutes, then toss again and taste.  Add more salt and/or pepper if needed.  Serve immediately at room temperature.


Cantaloupe and Prosciutto Salad

Adapted from Martha Stewart


  • 1/4 cup champagne vinegar or white-wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallot
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil or vegetable-olive oil blend
  • 1 tablespoon minced mixed fresh herbs (such as basil, chives, and parsley)
  • 8 ounces fresh arugula or salad mix, rinsed and spun dry
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
  • 1 cantaloupe, halved, seeded, peeled, and cut into thin wedges
  • 6 to 8 thin slices prosciutto, torn into bite-size pieces


In a mixing bowl, combine vinegar, shallot, garlic, mustard, salt, and pepper and whisk to combine. While continuously whisking, add the oil in a slow, steady stream until completely incorporated. Whisk in the herbs, and set aside while you prepare the salad. (note: save extra vinaigrette in an unreactive glass container if you have any leftover after prepping the salad)
In a large bowl, combine the arugula and red onion. Drizzle in 1/4 cup of the vinaigrette and toss to combine. Add more vinaigrette to taste, if desired, and season lightly with salt and pepper. Toss gently to combine.
Arrange the cantaloupe wedges on a large serving plate, top with the arugula salad and the prosciutto. Serve immediately.


Plum and Nectarine Crumble

Adapted from Kimberly Morales

Feel free to incorporate peaches as well in this stone fruit crumble.


For the fruit filling:
1-2 large plums, pitted and cut into 1″ cubes
1-2 large nectarines, pitted and cut into 1″ cubes
1 T flour
2 T brown sugar
1/4 t cinnamon
1/8 t ground nutmeg
1/8 t ground allspice
1/8 t cayenne pepper
For the crumble:
3/4 c flour
3/4 c sugar
1/2 c rolled oats
1/2 t ground cinnamon
2 T butter, melted
1 large egg, beaten
1. Preheat the oven to 375. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar and spices until well combined. Add the plums & nectarines and toss. Set aside.
2. In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients for the crumble. Add the melted butter and mix until slightly crumbly, then add the beaten egg. Mix thoroughly with your hands, working the mixture with your fingers until moist crumles form.
3. In a 9″ pie dish (or a couple of ramekins), arrange the plums & nectarines in a single layer. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the fruit until completely covered. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until the top has browned and the fruit juices begin to bubble through a bit. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
4. Serve the crumble warm or at room temperature. Top with creme fraiche or homemade whipped cream, and enjoy!

Baked Cinnamon Apple Chips

Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction

Store apple chips in air tight container for one week.


3 apples
granulated sugar


Preheat oven to 200F degrees. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.
Wash and thinly slice the apples, the thinner the better. Spread the apple slices onto the baking pans making 1 single layer. Sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.
Bake for 1 hour, flip the apples over, and bake for another 1-1.5 hours. Turn the oven off and keep the apples inside as the oven cools down for 1 hour. This will help them get crunchy. Some apples may just be chewy and only slightly crunchy after 3 hours in the oven.


As Always, if you have any questions, feel free to contact us!

All the Best,

The FarmShare Team
Applecrest Farm Orchards
133 Exeter Road, Hampton Falls NH 03844

Tel: +1 603 926 3721

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Applecrest Farm | 133 Exeter Road (Rt.88) | Hampton Falls, NH 03844 | Phone 603.926.3721 |