High Season? (CSA week 5)

This time of year we enter what I call “high season”, when those warm-season crops come in and we’re at the peak of variety. We’re certainly a bit off the mark for the year because of the cold start, but we’re right on the cusp…I found about 5 mature cucumbers yesterday! This is far from enough for the whole membership, but a good sign. We also found about 4 quarts of beans ready to go, again, close but not close enough.

Still, even though it means more work for me, I really like high season. It’s exciting to take in big quantities of beans, peppers, and tomatoes. I like pulling in bushels of corn early in the morning before most people are awake. It’s exhilarating. The bad part of high season is that weeds like it too…it’s tough to keep up the fight when you spend a lot of time harvesting. Even though I thought some beds looked pretty good a couple of weeks ago, if I look at them today, I get a little panic-y…”boy, I have to get to that, and that, and that…yikes!” Anyway, things seem to work out and the lesson is that you should celebrate what’s good and forget the bad part.
In the box:
New Norland Potatoes: Your standard red. I just hope the potato bugs leave some for us since they’re really bad this year!r
Garlic: Not the best I’ve ever grown, but better than nothing.
2 Red Onions
Beets: Not much, but it’s a start. Since you haven’t had chard yet due to the deer, you can use these greens too.
Some Little Lettuce
Broccoli Raab: The bunched green with jagged edges. This is pretty standard in pasta recipes or as a side.
Cabbage: Half of you got a purple cabbage called Red Express and half got a crinkly savoy cabbage called Alcosa
2 Daikon Radishes: A white radish with a peppery taste, salt mellows it out.
Some Thai Basil: This likes to put on a lot of buds (probably wants more heat…I’m thinking it gets it in Thailand), but the leaves seem good. It is a bit different from your standard Italian Basil…check it out.
Daikon Salad
From Moosewood Restaurant Daily Special
2 lbs. Daikon
1 1/2 t. salt
1 carrot
1 T. sugar
1 T. white vinegar
dash of sesame oil
3 scallions
2 T. canola or other vegetable oil
Trim the ends of the Daikon, peel and coarsely grate it. In a colander set into a larger bowl, toss the grated Daikon with the salt. Set aside to drain for 20 to 30 minutes, until about a cup of liquid has collected in the bowl. (Squeezing some of the liquid out of the Daikon will speed up the process.)
Meanwhile, peel and coarsely grate the carrot and place it in a serving bowl. In a small bowl, mix together the sugar, vinegar and sesame oil and set aside. When the Daikon is well drained, stir it into the carrots. Add the vinegar mixture and toss well.
Slice the scallions thinly on the diagonal and mound them on top of the salad. Heat the vegetable oil until smoking and immediately pour it over the scallions. Toss well. Serve at room temperature or chilled. Serves 6-8.
Note: You will likely need to halve the recipe (or use more carrot) and could use the red onion from this box instead of scallions.

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