Contact Us

July 13th, 2012 FarmShare, C.S.A. Newsletter

FarmShare, C.S.A. Newsletter for 13 July 12


What’s happening on the farm this week?

Some 1,000 ladies climbed ropes, jumped tires, forded streams and ran through mud pits on the farm this past Saturday for the 1st Annual LoziLu Women’s Mud Run. Beyond being a hoot to participate in, the event funds a good cause: leukemia and lymphoma research. It sure was a lively crew and we were sad to see them go, especially when they packed up their 40-foot-long slip-and-slide.

It’s official.  Blueberries are in and, as far as we can tell, it’s a bumper crop that we’ll be picking for a good long while.  Early peaches are beginning to color and size.  Should be picking those in a few days .  Pole beans, summer squashes and all varieties of peas are coming in huge right now.  Potatoes are a different story.  Been struggling with a heavy infestation of beetles and we’re not sure they’ll pull out of it.  Beyond a mountain of weeding still to be done, it’s mostly the rain we’re looking to now…we need some.  When picking up your box this week, please remember to do a little rain dance!

What’s in this week’s boxes?




Red Leaf Lettuce

Spring Salad Mix

Big Beef Tomatoes

Green Beans

Snap peas

English Shell Peas


Summer Squash


Storage, handling and general cooking tips


Storage + Handling

Blueberries will last up to 10 days, covered, in the refrigerator as long as they are kept dry. Just before using, wash and drain well. Blueberries also freeze well. Sort your berries, wash and dry them thoroughly (very important that they are dry!) Spread berries in a single layer on a cookie sheet and place in the freezer. Once hard, store in a labeled Ziploc bag.

Raw blueberries are delicious as is – just pop them in your mouth for an anytime snack. For a vitamin boost, (they are high in vitamins C and K, plus pack some powerful antioxidants and fiber) add them to salad, smoothies, a glass of lemonade, or a bowl of yogurt or cereal. Blueberries are yummy baked in pancakes, muffins, pies, cobblers, and crisps. Blueberries make wonderful jam!

Red Leaf Lettuce

Storage + Handling

Keep unwashed lettuce in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to a week. If you want to prep the lettuce for dinner later, the gentlest method of washing is to place the entire head in a bowl of cold water and gently swish to get the dirt out.  You may have to do this a few times with fresh water if you find a lot of dirt settling at the bottom. Then rinse and slice the head at the base to allow the leaves to separate.  Roll the leaves in paper towels and place them in a plastic bag or container in the refrigerator. If you have a salad spinner, by all means spin the leaves dry. Wet greens wilt quickly, so be sure they are good and dry before refrigerating them.

Spring Salad Mix

Storage + Handling

Store unwashed lettuce mix in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. When you are ready to eat the greens, wash them in a bowl of cold water to let dirt settle to the bottom. Once all of the dirt is removed, rinse and dry. Put them in a bowl covered with a wet paper towel in the refrigerator until serving time. Enjoy your greens within three or four days. Salads are a great addition to any meal, but are also good for tacos and sandwiches.

Snap Peas

Storage + Handling

Unwashed snap peas will last about 4 days in the refrigerator in a plastic bag, but I suggest eating them sooner than that. The sweet flavor and crisp texture of peas lessens with each day you store them. Always wash under cold water before serving. If you would like to freeze your snap peas, blanch first in boiling water for two minutes, plunge in an ice-water bath, dry, then store in labeled Ziploc bags in the freezer.

Remember you can eat the entire snap pea, shell and all. Take them along on car trips or to the beach for a healthy snack and quick fix of vitamin C. Here’s an easy way to prepare them as a side dish at dinner: wash snap peas and remove stem.  Toss with olive oil, salt, chopped shallots, and chopped thyme. Then spread on a baking sheet and bake in a 450-degree oven for 6-8 minutes until tender, but still firm. Delish!

English Shell Peas

Storage + Handling Tips

Peas can be refrigerated in a plastic bag for up to 5 days, but it’s best to eat them as soon as possible. Just pull the string across the top to open the pod, then push the peas out with your thumb. Peas also freeze well if you want to save them for a winter treat. Blanch the peas first in boiling water to kill any enzymes or bacteria that naturally occur in all veggies, as well as to help the peas maintain their nice green color, texture and freshness. You should only blanch for about 90 seconds, then immediately cool them in a bowl of ice water. Drain and dry the peas then pop them in a labeled Ziploc in the freezer.

I love shelling peas. It is meditative when done alone on the porch and lots of fun when you involve the rest of the family or a group of friends. Just hand your guests a bunch of shell peas, a bowl for the shells, and a bowl for the peas. You’ll notice their hands and their mouths immediately start working. We shell peas for hours beneath the crab apple tree on the Fourth of July. The game we play when shelling is to see who can find the shell with the most peas inside. My personal record is 11. Last night our best was 9. I wonder how many you’ll find!

Peas are a good source of vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, folate, thiamine (B1), niacin, iron, zinc and phosphorus. They are delicious boiled and then topped with herbs like mint or parsley, or added to risottos, omelettes, pastas, soups, and casseroles.


Big Beef Tomatoes

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.

Zucchini + Summer Squash

Storage + Handling Tips

Zucchini and summer squash respire through their skins, so they need to be refrigerated as soon as possible.  Store them unwashed in a perforated plastic bag in the vegetable bin, or refrigerate them in a sealed plastic container lined with a towel.  In the refrigerator, they keep for about a week. Before eating, rinse the veggies under running water to remove any dirt, then slice off the stem and blossom ends.  They can be cut into rounds, quarters, or chunks.


Zucchini and squash are great grilled. Slice the veggies lengthwise, then top with just a bit of olive oil, salt, and pepper. Just before serving add some slivers of basil or pesto. You can also cube them and put them on a kabob with cherry tomatoes, meat, and peppers before grilling. If you don’t want to fire up the grill, zucchini and squash also fry well. Just slice and put in a sauté pan over medium heat with butter or olive oil. When almost done, reduce heat to medium-low, top with parmesan cheese, salt and pepper, and cover pan until the cheese melts. Your side dish is done!

Green Beans

Storage + Handling Tips

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.

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?


Green Beans with Tomatoes and Herbs

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

½ cup sliced onion

2 teaspoons dried oregano

½ teaspoon dried ground thyme

1 pound green beans, ends clipped, cut in half

1 sprig rosemary, leaves torn off the stem

2 medium tomatoes, cut into wedges


Heat olive oil in a deep pan over medium heat. Add garlic and pepper flakes, sauté until fragrant. Add onions and sauté until translucent, 3-5 minutes. Add ¼ cup water, the dried spices, and green beans. Stir, cover, and steam beans until nearly done 10-15 minutes. Stir in rosemary and tomatoes. Cook very briefly, until tomatoes are warmed through and beans are done. Season with salt, or, if you prefer, melt salted butter over the beans before serving. This recipe won a prize in the Food for Thought Recipe Contest in Madison, Wisconsin. Serves 4.


– “From Asparagus to Zucchini: A Guide to Cooking Farm-Fresh Seasonal Produce”


Pea and Buttermilk Soup

I love serving chilled soup in the summer. This is a great do-ahead recipe that really shows off the fresh taste of peas!


2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 cup thinly sliced leek (pale-green parts only, rinsed well)

1 medium Yukon Gold potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1/4 cup dry vermouth

2 cups low-sodium chicken stock

2 cups water

1 pound shelled fresh peas (3 cups)

3/4 cup low-fat buttermilk

Salt and pepper

Pea tendrils, for garnish


Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add leek, and cook until softened, about 4 minutes. Stir in potato and dry vermouth, and reduce slightly, about 2 minutes. Add chicken stock and water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer until potatoes are tender, 7 to 8 minutes. Bring to a boil. Add peas. Cover, and cook just until peas are tender and bright green, about 2 minutes. Filling a blender halfway and covering with a kitchen towel, puree soup in batches. Strain through a coarse sieve into a large bowl; discard solids. Stir in buttermilk, and season with salt and pepper. Chill soup for at least 3 hours or up to overnight. Garnish each serving with pea tendrils if desired. Serves 6


–          “Martha Stewart Living,” June 2009


Pasta with Peas, Prosciutto and Cream

1 pound fettuccine pasta

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

3/4 cup diced onions

1 tablespoon minced garlic

2 ounces prosciutto, cut into 1/4-inch strips

1/4 cup dry white wine

1 1/2 cups heavy cream

3/4 cup frozen sweet peas

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper

3/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves


Cook pasta to package instructions. While the pasta cooks, set a large 12-inch saute pan over medium high heat, and add the olive oil and the butter. Once the butter has melted, add the onions to the pan and saute until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic to the pan and saute for 30 seconds. Place the prosciutto in the pan and saute for 1 minute. Deglaze the pan with wine and cook until it is nearly evaporated, about 30 seconds. Add the cream, peas, salt and pepper to the pan and let the cream reduce by half, 4 to 5 minutes. If the pasta is not yet cooked, turn the fire off the sauce while the pasta continues to cook.

Strain the pasta from the water once it is cooked, and place in a large heat resistant bowl. Pour the sauce over the pasta and sprinkle with the cheese and the parsley. Use tongs are two large forks to stir the sauce into the pasta and serve while hot. Serves 6.


– Emeril Lagasse, 2004


Zucchini with Tomatoes

2 medium zucchini

2 medium onions, peeled and chopped

2 medium tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped

1-2 cloves garlic, peeled and mashed

½ teaspoon dried thyme

4 tablespoons butter

4 tablespoons olive oil

¼ teaspoon pepper


Cut ends off zucchini, then cut into quarters lengthwise and slice thinly. Mix with sea salt and let stand for about an hour. Rinse in a colander and pat dry. Sauté zucchini in butter and olive oil in batches over medium-high heat until golden. Set aside. Sauté onion in butter and oil until tender. Add tomato, raise heat and sauté a few minutes until liquid is almost all absorbed. Add zucchini, garlic, thyme, and pepper. Saute about 1 minute more until flavors are amalgamated. Don’t let zucchini overcook!


-“Nourishing Traditions,” by Sally Fallon


Shaved Zucchini and Pecorino Cheese Salad


2 tablespoons freshly-squeezed lemon juice

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/3 cup olive oil

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

3 zucchini or summer squash

1 bunch argula or spicy greens

½ cup shaved pecorino cheese (Manchego cheese is also good!)

¼ cup chopped almonds (optional)


For the vinaigrette: Whisk the lemon juice and mustard together in a small bowl. Gradually whisk in olive oil, salt, and pepper. Set aside. Using a mandolin or vegetable peeler, cut the zucchini or squash into thin lengthwise strips. Place in a large bowl with the greens and pecorino cheese. Lightly toss the vegetables with the dressing. Garnish with almonds. Serves 4.


– “Organic Marin: Recipes from Land to Table”
As always, if any questions, always feel free to email us or give us a call!

All the Best,

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

Tel: +1 603 926 3721

Leave a Reply

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