CSA newsletter #11! Recipes, farm photos, tidbits, and more!
we, uh, don't have twitter

Deadline for comments to Boise City about its proposed Urban Agriculture plans are due by Aug. 12th! See the rant over yonder..........
to learn more about this important process!!!!

Season Extension/Fall and Winter Gardening Class!!!! Aug 18th. Learn which varieties work well for fall/winter gardening in our area, as well as when and how to start those seeds. Learn how to construct simple cold frames and hoop houses, and to identify the warmer microclimates in your yard for winter food!

Putting the Garden to BedSept. 1st. Though it’s still a month or so before the garden is ready to sleep, now is a good time to plan for the inevitable coming of Jack Frost. Any work you do in the garden in the fall will reward you tenfold the following spring. Learn how to protect your soil through the winter as well as add fertility for next year’s crops. We’ll discuss pros and cons of cover crops, manure, and compost, and examine the permaculture technique of sheet mulching to expand your garden for next season!
For more information or to sign up, email Casey! (casey@earthlydelightsfarm.com)

CSA Newsletter #11!

The tiniest of photos to show the best of news....We just got word that we get to keep our Taft Street location another year! This is great news for the farm, as we thought we'd lose it after this season. Secure access to land is one of the biggest challenges facing Treasure Valley farmers. The Boise Weekly article last week that showcased the city's proposed recommendations for urban agriculture sparked a bunch of controversy. Though we are delighted to see more livestock allowances and gardens in front yards on the homeowner side of things, we have several concerns with this proposal from an urban farming perspective. Mainly, it would require us to get "administrative approval" before farming a new plot, complete with signatures from neighbors and possible public hearings. Also, it restricts farming operations to daylight hours (who needs to irrigate anyway?) and to March 1st-November 1st (who needs to eat in the winter anyway?) Also, there is some nebulous language about mandatory garden "clean up" at the end of the season ("clean" means different things to an organic farmer than to a homeowner with a manicured, chemical-laced lawn and meatballed ornamental shrubs).

If you are interested in learning more about this proposal, and submitting your comments, click on the photo above to take you to the document they're accepting comments on right now. If you'd like to see the comments I already submitted, email me and I'll send 'em to ya! digger@earthlydelightsfarm.com.

Thank you for taking the time to help shape the future of urban farms in our city!

SHOVEL SLINGERS back in the spring...oh, how the gardens spring so quickly and beautifully from the earth! Here, they're turning cover crop planted last year. This last week, we've been planting cover crop for next year. The cycles in a garden...by the way, is cover crop considered "tidy"? (see the rant to the left if this doesn't make sense) What about a compost pile? Manure? Straw-covered garlic beds? Who would be policing us on this?
Zinnia Bouquets!
We now have Zinnia bouquets for sale! We'll cut one fresh for you when you come to the pickup for $6. If you get delivery, we can certainly try to deliver a bouquet to you, too!

*Jalapeno Pepper HOT! Not really, compared to, say, the Habanero pizza at Flying Pie, but it's the first spicy thing since the mustards bolted, so it's very welcome! Add it to anything you'd like a little heat in, and if you're not a hot fan, this and all peppers can be made more mild by removing the seeds.
*Anaheim Peppers! A mild chile! Yippee! These ones usually are pretty prolific, so hopefully they do well for us, too...this was supposed to be the Year of the Pepper for us--we planted something like 10 more varieties than we have in years past...unfortunately, no one bothered to clue the weather in on our plan, and so we are patiently waiting to see if it will pan out. These peppers can be used raw or cooked, as you see fit, and of course they are the common chile for Chiles Rellenos (sometimes Anchos are, but these work wonderfully, too!
*Eggplant! A littlun...mostly Pintung Long, with some Listada de Gandia (the bulbous white streaked ones) and one Florida High Bush). You'll likely get to try all of them before the season's up, so don't worry your pretty heads about that...See directions for cooking eggplant below, if you don't already have a favorite way.
*Tomatillos! Just a few to start, but they're coming! These little green GEMS are a fantastic addition to salsas (they are the main ingredient in salsa verde), and their tart and crisp taste is excellent when paired with eggs in a scramble. Yummy! Tomatillos are delicious raw or cooked, so try 'em both ways and see which you like best!
*Ground Cherries! Just a few to start, but they'll be in full swing soon...seasoned members look forward to these tasty, surprisingly-sweet little jewels wrapped in unassuming dirt-covered brown paper...one taste, you'll be hooked too! Just snack on these few raw today, and hopefully we'll have bigger bounties of them in the weeks to come!
*Carrots AGAIN???!!!!!!! What in the heck is going on ????? You asked for more carrots in previous years, and we've finally been able to deliver! These are SugarSnax, a wonderful variety, but a hybrid, which can be kinda a dirty word around these parts....still, they're delicious, so don't be shy with 'em! Good snack! Good cooked! Good steamed with a little salt and brown sugar, like our mamas used to do...
*SQUASH Zucchini, yellow crookneck, and/or pattypan (yellow and white)...I haven't made my lasagne yet, but I have been eating squash with pretty much everything. Last night we salted and oiled it and broiled it, then served it over spaghetti with a marinara...yum! Also, stuffing it or breading it like eggplant parmesan would be good options.

*Onion O.N.yun....anybody seen that part in The Vagina Monologues where she waxes poetic about the formation of the c-word on your tongue? It's so lovely...I was just having a similar thought about the onions...O, the round o of the onion, then the N, tickling your nose as it humms its way out....then the YUN, like yum, which is what they are....is this even appropriate for the newsletter? Anyway, onions are amazing, their name suits them perfectly, and you can never have too many of them, in my opinion. These are from Taft--good thing we get to grow there again next year! Our onions really liked it there!
*Magic Garlic "Oh that miracle clove! Not only does garlic taste good, it cures baldness and tennis elbow, too." -Laurie Burrows Grad
*BEANS!!!!!!! Everybody's favorite! Brian said he cooked them and topped a salad with 'em, which he found to be most suitable to the palette...you can of course add them to any dish you're already making, but I save mine for my once- or twice a week green bean tacos! 
*Cucumbers And lots of 'em, too...a tasty summer salad can be made by combining peeled and cubed cukes, a bit of finely chopped onion and/or garlic, cabbage if you like, chopped Thai basil leaves, and seasoned rice vinegar (or plain rice vinegar with a touch of sugar and salt).
*Basil Scrumptious, delicious basil. Check out the "cucumber" section above for a nice salad with your Thai Basil.
*Red Cabbage!  How pretty! Shred it and use it raw or cooked to add color, nutrients and flavor to anything. I've been frequently adding raw chopped cabbage to the top of a cooked meal just for a little freshness and crunch, and am surprised to find nothing seems the worse for it! I've tried it on pasta dishes, stirfries, scrambles, roasted veggies, and more, and it's added so much! Last week in a hurry to get down to first Thursday and all the free wine samples (and of course the art...) I wolfed down a bowl of leftover rice mixed with shredded cabbage and some of that sweet chili sauce, and it was great for a quick snack! Beats Ritz crackers any day!

EGGPLANT--the dark, scary monster in your bag...

Many an otherwise adventurous eater can get a little scared of eggplant. And rightly so. Many a dish made with eggplant is downright crappy (read: rubbery)! Eggplant, in my humble opinion, needs a champion, because there is little else as delectable on a summer plate than perfectly cooked and salted eggplant, rich and creamy and satisfying in a way few vegetables ever figure out how to be. The point is to avoid the rubber! I prefer a creamy eggplant, personally. If you cut the pieces too big, or if you don't salt 'em first, or if you don't cook 'em for long enough, RUBBER will be the RESULT. So, if you don't want rubber, follow the guidelines below. Or if you DO want rubber, DON'T follow the guidelines below!

Try these ways of preparing your eggplant:

1st. Slice it into 1/4" slices or larger cubes, longwise or crosswise. Rub salt into both sides of the slices (this allows it to "sweat" out). You can layer the slices in a colander with salt and leave 'em to drain, but I never do this. You can also rinse the salt off after draining it, but I never do that either.

*I simply rub or pour oil onto the salted pieces and bake 'em in the oven or on the grill for about 20 minutes at 400, turning halfway through the time. (the time/temp isn't exact--just turn 'em when they're browning up). They're delicious served over pasta, or as a side to whatever else you're eating. In a taco, mmm...go REALLY stinking good with a marinara....
*You can also bake 'em whole (poke em with a fork first), and after they're soft, slide 'em out of their skin and put 'em in a blender with spices to make baba ganouj or a version of baingan bhartha, the Indian eggplant dish! More on those later...

Faces of the Farm: Diana d'Amelio, CSA member!

You can't tell from the photo, but Diana is giving us the thumbs up at the CSA pickup. What you also can't tell from my poor camera angle is that, if you could see us, we'd be doing the same for her! Diana has been a member for 5 seasons now (or 6? I'm losing track...). I think we first met doing Idaho Earth Institute stuff. She and her family have been with us through our summer and our winter soup CSAs religiously through that time, and she is very generous with her words regarding both. She loves the food (especially Italian parsley, which we never seem to have enough of for her), and we of course truly cherish her and all the the members who love the food, because after all, that's what it's all about! Diana also is the most reliable supporter/lover of our zinna bouquets. She buys a bouquet each week, and then photographs them and even paints some of them! Last year, she even gave us some cards she had created from the photos she took of the zinnias as a Christmas gift! Diana has shared many positive thoughts, websites, photos, words, and more with us over the years she's been a member, and we are delighted to have the opportunity to help feed her and her family year after year. Thank you, Diana, for your continued support of all our endeavors! It's people like you who make CSAs a truly viable model for local farms. Thank you for all you do!
Members Share:
Veggie Catch-all dishes!

More suggestions from members to use up leftover veggies!

KRISTY juices whatever's left with a juicer
CAROL makes refrigerator pickles, or sautees whatever it is with a little olive oil and French tarragon
JANE L. puts it in pasta
COLLEEN makes veggie burgers with it

Share your catch-all tips with us! We'll pass 'em on to other members!

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