Week 15: Exciting News and More!

Happy Laboring All! We do have some exciting news to share this week, but first the produce list and Irene aftermath information.

Expect the following in your shares this week:

mesclun mix

1 bunch kale

1 pound carrots

1 acorn squash

1 celeriac root

tomatoes

Ailsa Craig sweet onions–last week for these!!!

1 head garlic

As usual, there might be a couple other items this week–but I won’t know until I harvest them!

Winter (!?) Squash

I am a stickler for rules, usually following them to a “t”, and in my mind fall does not begin until the equinox at the end of this month, so it must still be summer, right? As I look around me though, I see leaves turning and I feel the cool night air. I can deny it no longer–behind the faint glimmers of dying summer, fall is tumbling toward us.

Rather than fight it, I decided to embrace the changing seasons in the kitchen this week. Using items in the share this week, I whipped up a tasty summer-turning-fall-meal.

Stuffed Acorn Squash

generously serves 2

1 acorn squash (or other small winter squash) cut in half and seeds removed

4 tomatoes, diced

1 onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 pound tempeh (or protein of choice), crumbled

1 hot chile, minced

1 TBS ground cumin

salt and pepper to taste

1. Begin by roasting the squash. Place halves on a sheet pan in a pre-heated oven at 350. Roast until soft, about 30 minutes. (This can be done the night before and the squash can be refrigerated until you are ready to stuff and bake them.)

2. In a medium pan, saute the onions, chile pepper and tempeh in 2-3 TBS of oil until well cooked. Add tomatoes and cook until the juices released and begin to simmer away. Turn off heat and add garlic, cumin and salt and pepper.

3. Spoon tomato mixture into cooked squash halves and place on sheet pan. Bake in oven at 350 for 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven and let stand for 15 minutes before eating. Serve with simple salad or sauteed greens.

Celeriac, Celeriac

Another great “fall” vegetable making an appearance in this week’s share is celeriac. Celeriac is closely related to celery, but instead of being bred for the stalks, celeriac boasts a large, flavorful, bulbous root. Celeriac tastes like celery, but is quite dense and crunchy. To prepare, remove the stalks (you can save them for making stock, by they are too fibrous and tough for eating), peel the skin and pare the roots off. After cleaning off celeriac, proceed with your desired recipe.

When the weather turn cold, celeriac makes a great soup and is also wonderful mashed with potatoes. For days like these, however, I prefer to make celeriac remoulade, which I posted a recipe idea for here.

Irene and the Aftermath

We are continually saddened as news makes it’s way to us about the devastating effects Tropical Storm Irene has had on our community. Perhaps the news that effects us in the most powerful way is that many of the farmers in the Hudson Valley, farmers we know–have eaten meals with, socialized with and sought advice from–have had their crops destroyed by flooding.

The following video highlights the damage to Taliafero Farm in New Paltz.

Farmer’s Plight After Irene

The Fours Winds Farm and Second Wind CSA were very fortunate that this natural disaster did not inflict major damage on our farm. Many CSA programs in this area and surrounding counties have actually ended for the season due to severe flooding. Our hope is that as Pete Taliafero’s CSA members are doing, the greater community will continue to support local farms this season and beyond.

Here are links on more information regarding relief efforts:

General relief efforts: Northeast Red Cross

Farm relief efforts: Hudson Valley Food Network’s Comprehensive List

And the exciting news is…

Three years ago Sam and I committed to running the CSA program at Four Winds Farm after having just one season of farming experience under our belts. For us, taking over the CSA was an extension of our training as farmers. We didn’t have to make a huge investment towards land or infrastructure, but all the other responsibilities would be ours to tackle. The CSA has been the main focus of my life since then. Second Wind started out as a joint venture for Sam and I, and now it is mainly with my hands (and sweat) that the food is grown in the field and makes it into the harvest room for your tables. And now, three years later, as Jay handed the CSA down to fresh hands, so am I (with Jay’s blessing, of course!). At the end of the season I will be turning over the reins of Second Wind CSA to Wes and Bryn.

Wes and Bryn have been working at Four Winds under Jay’s direction all season, and before that they worked on a farm in New Mexico. They are eager, sweet, funny, hard-working, spirited folks and I know you all will love them just as I do. They also bring with them the adorable Utah, who many of you have met, the friendly pooch with an uncanny sense of humor. Here is Utah, demonstrating how she cracks me up every Saturday morning while I get ready for market:

I don't know, I might have to take her with me, just don't tell Wes and Bryn...

So, what will I be doing you ask? Well, I certainly am not giving up on farming! First, Sam and I are all set to get MARRIED at the end of THIS MONTH! Woohoo! (Yes, we have been planning a wedding during farming season…it has been an experience to say the least!) Then, at the end of this season, I will begin transitioning from CSA farmer to seed company worker, as I will begin working at the Hudson Valley Seed Library full-time. Sam will continue to work at the Tuthilltown Distillery, and we will then begin the potentially long and extremely exciting process of finding land and a home to call our own! We hope to slowly start to build and cultivate our own living space and farm over the next few years. It truly is a transitional time!

In an effort to introduce you all to Wes and Bryn, I will post a short interview I had with them later this week. They will start posting information about the upcoming season soon. If you have any questions, we will do our best to address them. Please send inquiries to secondwindcsa@gmail.com.

Thanks and have a great week.

Best,

Erin

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4 Comments

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4 responses to “Week 15: Exciting News and More!

  1. Andy Chmar

    Erin, I think I speak for all members in wishing you and Sam all the best for your upcoming wedding and with your new ventures. It’s been great having you both so expertly managing Second Wind and we look forward to hearing about your future successes. Andy

  2. Elisa O'Hern

    Congrats Erin and Sam! We will miss you guys but are looking forward to getting to meet Wes and Bryn!

  3. Carolyn Lengel

    Congratulations to you both on wedding, new plans, and three great seasons running the CSA!

  4. Dan Kelso

    Congrats and best of luck Erin and Sam! Gigi and I have certainly enjoyed the wonderful veggies so far this season.

    Dan Kelso

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