Contact Us

September 11th, 2012 FarmShare, C.S.A. Newsletter

FarmShare, C.S.A. Newsletter for 11 September 2012

What’s in this week’s boxes?






Sweet 100/Sungold mix cherry tomatoes

Mountain Fresh tomatoes




Green Broccoli


Storage, handling and general cooking tips


Storage + Handling

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 + 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 + Handling

Peaches, like tomatoes, are climacteric, which means they will continue to ripen after they are picked. Leave them on the counter to soften to your liking before eating or stick them in a paper bag with a banana to quicken to ripening process. If your peaches are already at the softness you desire, store in the refrigerator until ready to eat. They should last up to a week. But please do not put under-ripe fruit in the fridge as it will dry out the flesh and turn mealy. When testing for ripeness, be gentle, never squeeze or press hard on the peach. Peaches blemish and tear easily. Wash peaches in cool, soapy water just before you intend to use them. To remove the peach stone, slice the fruit lengthwise around the pit, down to the stone. Then, twist each half in opposite directions to release the peach from the stone. Peaches are chock full of vitamins A and C and potassium.

If you plan to cook with your peaches, peel the skin first. To do this, cut an X with a sharp knife at the bottom of the peach and pop in boiling water to blanch for a couple seconds, then quickly put into a bowl of ice water. The ice water will stop the peach from continuing to cook and the skin will easily peel away. If the fruit is incredibly ripe, blanching is probably not necessary. You can just pare it with a knife.

If you are using cut fruit, sprinkle some lemon over it to stop it from browning as the exposure to air will cause enzymatic browning.


Storage + Handling Tips

Remove the leafy green tops, leaving about an inch of stems.  Refrigerate dry, unwashed carrots in a plastic bag for two weeks or longer. Carrots are a good source of Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Thiamin, Potassium, Vitamin A, Vitamin K, Vitamin B6 and Manganese. They also are chock full of dietary fiber.

Organic carrots fresh from the farm generally don’t need to be peeled, but should you decide to peel them, the nutrient loss is negligible.  Peel carrots or scrub them well with a stiff brush just before using.  Trim off any green spots, which can taste bitter.  When slicing carrots for cooking, be sure to make all the pieces relatively the same size to ensure an evenly-cooked dish.


Carrots are great raw. Dip your carrots in hummus, peanut butter, or a creamy dressing. Add some to your children’s lunchbox! Slice or grate raw carrots into salads or cole slaw. Cooking will bring out the carrot’s inherent sweetness.  Just be sure to remove them from the heat while they still have some firmness to them.

You can steam (15-20 minutes), stir-fry (2-4 minutes) or braise (15-20 minutes) your carrots.


Canteloupe + Watermelon

Storage + Handling

Give your melon a thump. If it sounds hollow, it is ripe. If not, let the melon sit on the counter at room temperature to soften. When ready to eat, wash your melon well, then cut it in half. For the cantaloupe, you can easily scoop out the interior seeds and webbing with a spoon. Slice melon flesh off of the rind and serve. Cut melon can be refrigerated for 4 days or so. For an easy appetizer, wrap thin slices of prosciutto around sliced melon and bind with a toothpick.

With its orange flesh, cantaloupe is high in beta-carotene, which is good for your eyesight. It is also very high in Vitamin A, which is good for your lungs. The Vitamin C in cantaloupe not only acts as an antioxidant, but it protects the immune system by encouraging white blood cells to fight infections and kill bacteria and viruses. It is low in calories, but high in potassium and dietary fiber. The B Vitamins cantaloupe contains help process carbohydrates and, along with the amount of fiber, regulates the flow of sugar into the bloodstream. Watermelon is filled with lycopene, which is considered a potential agent for cancer prevention.

Fact: Melons are related to squash, pumpkins, and plants that grow off vines on the ground. What we call cantaloupe in America is actually a muskmelon. The true variety of cantaloupe is found mostly in France. Cantaloupe were first cultivated in 1700 A.D. in Italy in a town called Cantalup, where its name derives from.


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.


Storage + Handling Tips

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.

Shuck corn only before using by pulling down, breaking off the stem, and removing the silky threads by hand. If there is some worm damage – no fear – just cut out that part, the rest of the corn is still good. Wash the corn in cold water. To remove the kernels, place the corn vertically in a large bowl and run a sharp knife down along its length. If making a soup, or if you want some extra milky juice, run the knife down the length of the corn again, but with the dull back of the knife to avoid shaving off the cob. To freeze corn, blanch in boiling water for about 5 minutes, cool and drain, then wrap in plastic.

Tip from Thomas Keller: After you have removed the kernels from the cob into a bowl, place a smaller bowl of water next to it. Swirl your hand around the corn and the silk will stick to your hand. Remove the silk from your hand by dipping it into the bowl of water. Or running water would work too, I’m sure.

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

Broccoli should be stored unwashed, in a perforated bag in the refrigerator and enjoyed within 3-5 days. Unrefrigerated, broccoli will quickly become woody and fibrous. If broccoli is not used right away and looks a bit tired, soak it in a bowl of ice cold water for 30 minutes to refresh it’s vibrant crispiness. Always remove leaves and wash broccoli before eating. Broccoli sometimes comes out of the field with innocuous friends tagging along in its depths.  Immediately before cooking, soak your broccoli, head down, in cold, salted water (1 teaspoon salt to 8 cups of water) for 5 minutes.  Any critters will float to the top. Broccoli florets are rich in vitamin C and a good source of vitamin A, B6, and folate. Broccoli is also high in fiber and provides small amounts of calcium and iron.

Broccoli can be eaten raw or cooked. If you cook it, please do so rapidly (by either steaming or blanching) so that it will retain its bright green color, crisp texture, and nutrients. The stalks can also be used, but cook them separately from the head because it is tougher and the cooking times vary. Peel the woody parts of the stalks and slice. Broccoli can be frozen for later use. Just soak in salted water for 15 minutes, then blanch for 3-4 minutes. Drain, cool, and wrap your blanched broccoli in a labeled plastic bag before placing in freezer.


Tomato and Watermelon Salad

Don’t balk! This is a yummy combination


5 cups watermelon cubes

1 1/2 pounds ripe tomatoes, cut into 3/4-inch cubes

3 teaspoons sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 small red onion, sliced or minced

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

Feta cheese, crumbled

Black pepper to taste


Combine watermelon and tomato cubes in a large bowl. Sprinkle with sugar and salt and toss to coat. Let the mixture stand 15 minutes. Meanwhile slice or mince onion and whisk balsamic vinegar and olive oil in a small bowl. Add onion, vinegar and oil to bowl with watermelon + tomatoes, then cover with plastic wrap and pop in the refrigerator to chill for 2 hours. Serve over lettuce and garnish with feta and a turn or two of black pepper to taste.

Watermelon Salsa

This is great over grilled or baked fish. We just tried it to delicious effect with some fresh Mako shark our foreman caught.


2 cups chopped watermelon, seeds removed

½ English cucumber, chopped

½ red pepper, diced

1 small jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced

2 tablespoons red onion, minced

¼ cup finely chopped cilantro

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

½ teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon olive oil


Combine all ingredients, toss to coat and serve.


Braised Carrots with syrup

An old stand-by for any weeknight meal


1 pound carrots, peeled and sliced

1 cup chicken broth

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided

1 tablespoon brown sugar or maple syrup


Combine the carrots, chicken broth, and 1 tablespoon of butter in a sauté pan. Simmer, covered, over medium heat until the carrots are tender and the liquid is cooked down. Add the remaining butter and brown sugar or maple syrup. Coat the carrots with syrupy liquid and serve warm.


Gingered Carrots


7-8 medium carrots

1 tablespoon sugar

1 teaspoon cornstarch

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon ground ginger

¼ cup orange juice

2 tablespoons butter



Wash carrots and slice on the diagonal into ¼-inch-thick pieces. Cook covered in boiling salted water until just tender (7-10 minutes).  Drain. Combine sugar, cornstarch, salt and ginger in a small saucepan. Add orange juice and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and bubbles. Boil 1 minute then stir in butter. Pour over hot carrots and toss. Garnish with chopped parsley. This side dish can be made ahead and reheated before serving.


Prosciutto-Wrapped Crostini with Melon Salsa Crudo

Recipe courtesy Michael Chiarello


1 long loaf country-style bread, such as Pugliese

Extra-virgin olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 cup Parmesan

1 small red onion, minced

2 tablespoons Champagne vinegar

1 ripe cantaloupe


2 tablespoons minced flat-leaf parsley

12 slices prosciutto, sliced in 1/2 crosswise


Preheat the oven to 375 F. Cut the loaf of bread in half crosswise, then cut each half lengthwise into 1-inch thick slices. Lay the slices in a single layer on baking sheets. Generously drizzle the top of each slice with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle the Parmesan over the slices. Cook in the oven until golden brown, about 10 to 12 minutes. Set aside. Marinate the onions in the vinegar for 5 minutes. While the onion is marinating, peel, seed and dice the melon and place in a bowl. Add the diced melon to the onions, season with salt and stir to blend together. Add the minced parsley and stir to combine.

Wrap the end of each crostini with a piece of prosciutto. Arrange on a platter and spoon a tablespoon of melon salsa on each and serve. Serve remaining salsa on the side.

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 |