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June 11th, 2013, FarmShare C.S.A. Newsletter

What’s in this week’s boxes?


Salad Greens

Green leaf lettuce

Baby Spinach




Strawberries- “All-Star”, “Wendy”, “Nor’Easter”, “Evangeline”, “Itasca” (Early Varieties)


What’s happening on the farm this week?

STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL: Sunday, June 16, 2013 (10a to 3p)

Four rolling acres of juicy berries and a cool spring-fed pond provide the backdrop for a fun-filled day of Pick-Your-Own strawberries, free live bluegrass music, tractor drawn hayrides, face painting, cider donuts and a bevy of strawberry inspired delicacies from our very own scratch kitchen and bakery.


Storage, handling and general cooking tips…



Storage and Handling– Use your strawberries as soon as possible (this usually isn’t a problem for me) as they stop ripening as soon as they’re picked.  Don’t wash your strawberries until you’re ready to use them, as moisture causes them to spoil more quickly.  Leave the caps on and store your strawberries in an uncovered container in the fridge. Take them out of the fridge about an hour before you’re ready to use them, as they tend to have the best flavor and texture at room temperature. Rinse your strawberries gently in cold water and then pat them dry with a towel.  Finally, remove the tops with a paring knife or with a slight twist of the wrist, and they’re ready to eat or use in your favorite strawberry recipe.

Lettuce, Salad Greens and Mesclun:


Storage- Store unwashed lettuce, greens 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 wilt quickly, so make sure they are good and 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.

Handling- Salad greens are fragile, so make sure to be gentle with them.  For lettuce, slice the head at the base to allow the leaves to separate from each other.  Tear your leaves into smaller more manageable pieces for use.  Lettuce, greens and mesclun mix can be washed by swishing them around in a basin of cold water.  If you see a lot of dirt settling in the water, wash them again, until they’re nice and clean.  The best way to dry your greens is in a salad spinner if you’ve got one, or if not, you can always pat them dry with a towel.

Cook Tips- Salad greens taste great lightly braised or stir-fried, but keep an eye on them, as they cook very quickly.

Try adding salad greens into sandwiches, tacos, burritos, omelets, or whatever else you can think of!

Salad greens are a great addition to quiches, lasagna, and other baked dishes, wanna green up your pizza? It’s great on top, right after you pull it out of the oven.




Storage– Store your spinach in a damp towel or plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to about a week.

Handling– Rinse your spinach leaves the same way you would lettuce, make sure any dirt from the field rinses off and then dry them with a salad spinner, or pat dry with a towel.

Cook Tips-Spinach, like most greens, cooks very quickly so make sure to keep an eye on it! When your spinach turns a nice bright green color, you will know that its done cooking. Much like other greens, spinach can be added to sandwiches, burritos, soups, stir-fries, quiche, lasagna, and any number of other tasty dishes.



Store-This hardy cold weather plant, can keep at home for more than a week when stored correctly. It likes to be standing up, put it in a tall container, with the cut ends on the bottom in an inch or so of water so the asparagus doesn’t dry out. Asparagus loves the cold, so tuck it in the chilliest corner of your refrigerator.

Handling– Rinse your asparagus in cold water, dry with a paper towel and trim off the ends. How much to chop off? The asparagus will tell you—if you ask nicely. Hold one asparagus between your thumb and forefinger at the cut end. Grasp the bud end with your other hand and gently bend the stalk. It will snap exactly in the right place and shows you how much of the woody part to discard. No need to do this for the whole bunch, use your first hand-snapped asparagus as guidance to cut the rest of the woody stems.

Cook tips-Asparagus cooks quickly, easily, and tastily. You can even enjoy it raw with a drizzle of high quality olive oil. Steam it for 8 minutes and add it to a salad. Boil, blanch, and then sauté with lemon, garlic and olive oil. If it’s a beautiful day out, drizzle with olive oil and lay it right on your medium-high grill for 5-8 minutes until tender.


Store-Place stalks in a plastic bag to retain moisture and place in the fridge’s crisper drawer. It should keep for about a week. Rhubarb can also be frozen; to do this cut stalks in to 1 inch chunk and place in an airtight plastic bag. Frozen rhubarb should be able to keep for up to a year.

Handling- To prepare , remove all the leaves (they are toxic), rinse and pat dry. Trim the ends and cut into 1 inch chunks. Remove tough strings as you would with celery. String will usually break down during the cooking process.

Cook tips- Stew or bake with a little water and plenty of sugar to combat the tartness. Rhubarb can quickly cook into a syrupy liquid, so keep an eye on it, you need it to retain some texture for specific recipes.  Generally, the redder the stalk, the sweeter the end product will be.


Store- Our producer, Pete & Gerry’s, recommends storing the eggs in a refrigerator, reason being that they wash their eggs before sending them to market, which makes them slightly more porous and in turn the eggs age a little faster.

FYI-You may be wondering why there is a discrepancy between eggs and refrigeration around the world. Well, we did too and did some research. In the US, industry standards are to wash the eggs before sending them out, in order to lower the risk of transmitting diseases. That’s not to say that local small scale egg producers’ eggs aren’t clean, but they probably haven’t been subjected to a pressure wash, leaving the shell less porous and able to be left un-refrigerated longer.


Strawberry and Spinach Salad:


1 bunch baby spinach

10 strawberries, sliced

1/2 cup sugar

1 tspn salt

1/3 cup white wine vinegar

1 cup vegetable or olive oil

1 tbsp poppy seeds


1. Gently toss spinach and strawberries in a large bowl.

2. Place sugar, salt, vinegar and oil in a blender and blend until smooth.  Vigorous mixing will suffice if you don’t have a blender.

3. Stir in the poppy seeds and then pour dressing over the spinach and strawberries. Toss and serve!

Asian Inspired Asparagus


1 bunch trimmed asparagus

2 tblsp soy sauce

4 tablespoons sesame oil

1 clove garlic- minced


1.Trim asparagus and whisk together soy sauce, sesame oil and minced garlic

2.Marinate asparagus in soy, garlic, sesame oil mixture (at least half an hour) while your grill/pan heats up

3.Cook on grill or in pan on stove top until asparagus is tender, save left over marinade and drizzle over asparagus when done, sprinkle with fresh ground pepper and serve immediately.


Strawberries with Sour Cream and Brown Sugar:



A simple and absolutely delicious way to enjoy your fresh strawberries.


2 pints strawberries washed and dried

¾ cup sour cream

¾ cup brown sugar


1.  Place your strawberries, sour cream, and brown sugar each in their own bowl.

2.  Take a strawberry and dip it in sour cream, dip it in brown sugar. Eat and repeat!


Rhubarb Syrup


2 cups chopped rhubarb

3 cups sugar

1 cup water

Boil all three ingredients for 20 minutes and strain out the pulp. Store the syrup in the refrigerator. Use as an addition to your ginger ale, soda water, or to make a tart rhubarb martini.


As a reminder, part of the fun of being a member of a CSA is collaborating with your community, so always feel free to post cooking suggestions or feedback on recipes that we post, or favorite recipes of your own that you’d like to share.





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