Contact Us

June 26th, 2012 FarmShare, C.S.A. Newsletter

FarmShare, C.S.A. Newsletter for 26 June 12

What’s happening on the farm this week?

Howdy All:

At 2:45p last Thursday, it was a scorching 110 degrees in the middle of the lettuce patch!  Needless to say, we’re quite glad to see the heat spell gone and are thankful for a bit o’ rain.  The blueberries are progressing nicely enough that I was able to spot-pick a quart for my family last night.  Keep fingers crossed and maybe you’ll see some blues in next week’s share.

First decent Boston Bibbs have reared thier heads, which always gets us excited.  And don’t even mention first of the season peas to Farmer Pete…he had his way, he’d keep ‘em all to himself.  Greenhouse tomatoes, unfortunately, are suffering from fusarium and verticulum wilts.  Though harmless to us humans, these soil-borne fungus pathogens are not favorable to the plant and are largely untreatable.  Let’s send good thoughts to our ‘maters and hope they make it!  Beets, spinach and carrots are in the pipeline and heading your way soon.

What’s in this week’s box?


Strawberries: varieties including Idea, Cabot, Eros, Ovation, Darselect & Jewel


Snow Peas

Boston Bibb Lettuce

Spring Lettuce Micro Mix: Green Oakleaf, Red Oakleaf, Green Romaine, Red Romaine, Lollo Rossa, and Redleaf lettuces

Radishes: Red and Easter Egg

Braising Greens


Storage, handling and general cooking tips


Storage + Handling

Strawberries stop ripening the moment they are picked, so don’t wait to enjoy them!  They are best eaten immediately. If you plan to eat your strawberries today, wash them first. Place the berries in a bowl of water with a bit of soap and swish to let the dirt sink to the bottom, then rinse. This gentle method protects the berries from bruising.

If you’d like to save your berries for later, please don’t wash them until you plan to use them as moisture causes them to spoil more quickly. Just pop them as is into the refrigerator in an uncovered container. Don’t forget to let the berries sit at room temperature for an hour after you take them out of the refrigerator – that way they’ll have the best flavor and texture.

Strawberries also freeze well. Wash and dry them thoroughly, then hull. Next, place them cut or whole into a freezer-safe container.

Snow Peas

Storage + Handling

I suggest eating your snow peas right off the bat, but if you would like to store them, they will stand to be refrigerated in a plastic bag for up to 4 days. They are great raw and dipped in dressing. My son eats them like candy. I like to steam them first until crisp-tender, then plunge them in cold water to stop the cooking. I pat them dry and then toss with a bit of sesame oil, sesame seeds, and thin slices of red pepper. It’s super fresh and the colors look beautiful together. Snow peas also taste yummy stir-fried with other veggies and meats and served over rice.


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. One novel idea is to forgo the all-too-common bun when barbequing this summer and serve your burger in a lettuce leaf!

Braising Greens

Storage + Handling

Keep dry, unwashed greens in a sealed plastic bag in the refrigerator.  Thicker greens will keep up to two weeks, but tender ones like beet greens should be eaten within a week. Just prior to use, swish leaves in a large basin of water.  After any grit has settled to the bottom, lift the leaves out carefully.  Additional rounds of washing may be necessary.  If the sink has dirt in it or if you sample a leaf and it tastes gritty, the greens probably need to be rinsed again.

It’s fine to leave the stems on small baby greens, but many greens (choi, chard, kale) have thick stems that cook more slowly than the leaves.  If stems are not removed, you wind up with either soggy greens or raw stems.  Fold each leaf in half and slice out the thick stem. De-stem several leaves, then stack them and slice diagonally into 1 inch-wide ribbons.  If you want to use the stems in your dish, slice them a quarter-inch thick and begin cooking them before you add the greens.

Most people cook their greens in three ways: quick-boiling, simmering, and sautéeing.  To quick-boil greens, bring two quarts of water to a boil. Do not chop the leaves, but submerge them whole into the boiling water. Use a wooden spoon to move them from top to bottom. To tell when they are done, use your senses. The leaves will still be bright green, but will have begun to wilt slightly. If you are still not sure, taste a leaf.  If it is still bitter, cook more. Tender mustard greens require just a 30-60-second dip. Mature collar greens can take up to 5 minutes. Don’t forget to save the cooking water when you drain your greens. This “dirty water” is called pot-likker and many a cook has been known to drink this nutrient-filled broth. Gently run cool water over the greens to stop the cooking process. Once they are cool enough to touch, gather them into a ball and gently squeeze out the excess water with a fork or your hand. Chop the greens on the cutting board and they are ready to dress and serve.

To simmer greens, bring about one inch of liquid (water, broth, wine . . .) to simmer in a large skillet. Chop the washed greens into strips. Place the strips in the simmering liquid and keep them moving with a wooden spoon. You are looking for the same results as described above: a bright green color and a sweet flavor; but since the greens have been chopped, the cooking time will be shorter.

When sautéing greens, it is good to work with just-washed greens. The water helps with wilting and releasing bitterness. Heat 1-2 Tablespoons of oil in a skillet. Add a minced clove of garlic if desired. If there is too much water on the greens or the oil is too hot, the oil will sputter, so take care. Chop the greens you are using into bite-sized pieces. Stacking the washed leaves is an easy way to make efficient, uniform cuts. Place cut leaves in the skillet and keep them moving. Stay with the process and test every minute or so for doneness. When the leaves are still full of color and tasting proves not bitter, but sweet, they’re ready!

Now you have a heap of cooked greens! How do you serve them? You can keep it simple and add a dash of vinegar and a sprinkle of tamari, then toss and eat. Or you can add your cooked greens to soups, quesadillas, lasagna, beans, grain dishes, omelettes, or gratins. You can prepare a heavenly peanut sauce to drizzle over greens, or toss them with toasted sesame oil and toasted sesame seeds for an Asian flavor. A squeeze of lemon is fine, but how about a little orange juice with garlic and a touch of chipotle sauce? Serve it over slices of polenta and it’s fit for company.

Spring Lettuce 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. Salad greens are a great addition to any meal, but are also good for tacos and sandwiches.


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.

Radishes and Radish Greens

Storage + Handling

Radishes can be eaten immediately or stored, unwashed, for a week in the refrigerator in a plastic bag in the vegetable crisper bin.  Store the leafy tops separately. Before serving, scrub and soak the radishes in cold water to refresh them. Drain thoroughly. Pinch off the bottom root. It’s not necessary to peel radishes, although most of the spicy flavor that radishes are known for is found in the skin. If you’d like to make your dish a little bit milder, peel radishes before use or cook them.

I like to eat radishes raw with just a sprinkle of coarse salt. They are also nice sliced, grated, or julienned in salads or as part of a crudité spread. Steamed, blanched or boiled radishes can be delicious rolled in butter with a dash of salt and pepper. You can also cook radish leaves with other greens to add a peppery flavor to your dish. Why not try a radish sandwich? Spread butter on a few slices of sourdough bread, layer with thin slices of radish, raw spinach, and a slice of cheese.


Bibb Lettuce with Strawberries

This is a lovely combination but feel free to add a few radishes sliced ever so thinly as a peppery compliment. You can also try throwing in a few minced mint leaves, for a super fresh touch.  And do be sure to use an initial light touch when dressing.

Bibb lettuce
4 ounce Maytag Bleu Cheese
1/4 cup Candied Pecans
1/8 cup Apple Cider
Vinaigrette (recipe follows)
Pint sliced Strawberries

Apple Cider Vinaigrette:
1 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
1/4 tablespoons minced garlic
1 tablespoons dry leaf Oregano
1/4 tablespoons dry leaf Basil
1/4 tablespoons Dijon Mustard
1/4 tablespoons Black Pepper
1/2 tablespoons Kosher Salt
1 cup Olive Oil

Combine vinaigrette ingredients in large mixing bowl (except oil).
Add olive oil gradually and whisk vigorously.

To make salad, remove root from Bibb lettuce and cut into quarters.
Arrange on a platter and top with other ingredients;
garnish with croutons (if you like) and serve with the dressing.

– Chef Gil Logan of Levy’s Restaurant

Radish and Feta Salad



Black olives

Fresh Mint

Lemon Vinaigrette


Combine thinly sliced radishes, crumbled feta cheese, sliced olives and chopped fresh mint (if you still have some left from last week’s CSA box!) in a salad bowl. Dress with a lemony vinaigrette and let sit for a half hour before serving.

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

Snow Pea, Orange + Jicama salad

4 cups snow peas, trimmed

2 oranges

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon white-wine vinegar

1 tablespoon minced shallot

1 teaspoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 small jícama, peeled and cut into matchsticks (about 1 cup)

Bring 1 inch of water to a boil in a saucepan fitted with a steamer basket. Have a bowl of ice water by the stove. Steam snow peas until tender-crisp, about 3 minutes. Transfer the peas to the ice water. Drain.

Cut peels and white pith from oranges. Working over a bowl, cut the segments from surrounding membranes. Squeeze the peels and membranes over the bowl to extract about 3 tablespoons juice before discarding them. Transfer the segments with a slotted spoon to a small bowl. Whisk oil, vinegar, shallot, sugar and salt into the juice. Return the segments to the bowl along with the snow peas and jícama; toss with the dressing.

Eating Well magazine



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



  • Marilyn Wallingford says:

    Helloooo……..friends ae asking if there are any shares available……hmmmmmm
    PS….you’re the best

  • admin says:

    we DO still have shares available. please have them send an email inquiry and i’ll help them along. Thanks!

Leave a Reply

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