Valley Flora Winter CSA: Week 4!

Hi everyone! Thanks for getting by without the farm newsletter this past month while I took a little winter break with my family. I'm back to it now, just in time for a dose of real winter weather! We were grateful to get the harvest in this week before the brunt of the storm hit. If you are a Winter CSA member and are unable to make it to your pickup site today, not to worry. Any unclaimed Valley Flora totes will be put in our walk-in cooler this evening (you can pick up anytime during daylight hours this week) and Bandon totes will be available until 5 pm tomorrow. Stay safe, don't drive if it's scary!

This Week's Winter Share:

  • Savoy Cabbage
  • Collard Greens
  • Bunched Winter Mustard Medley
  • Curly Parsley
  • Pea Shoots
  • Leeks
  • Yellow Potatoes
  • Tetsukabuto Winter Squash
  • Onions

On Rotation:

  • Purple Sprouting Broccoli
  • Spring Raab

A Couple Recipes for a Stormy Winter's Night:

Oven-Roasted Savoy Cabbage (not so much a recipe; more like the simplest way to make the most delicious cabbage you ever tasted, and warm your kitchen up while you're at it):

Preheat your oven to 450. Cut your cabbage into narrow wedges, leaving the core attached. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper and spread onto a sheet pan. Bake until crispy-browned at the edges and soft throughout. That's it. I'm not sure there's a better way to enjoy winter cabbage. 

Lemony White Bean Soup with Lots of Greens (adapted from the New York Times Cooking)

Follow the link above to our online recipe collection for the full recipe. This has become my favorite soup this year, and is especially good with collard greens, which lend a meaty texture to the dish.

Let it Snow!(?)

I'm torn on this topic as I consider the forecast for the next 24 hours: on one hand, I would love nothing more than to wake up to a winter wonderland, pop into my nordic skis, and head out with 6" of fluff underfoot. On the other hand, I'm not so excited about camping in our delivery van next to the greenhouses tonight so that I can wake up every hour and sweep snow off the plastic. But heck, with a zero degree sleeping bag and a thermos full of hot tea, bring it on! I'd do just about anything to have ski season arrive right at my front door.

But why the need to sweep snow off the greenhouses in the middle of the night? Because a couple inches of wet, heavy snow is enough to collapse them. We live in a climate where precip usually falls from the sky in the form of rain, which allows us to use quonset-style hoop houses. They're cheaper to build but they aren't designed to shed snow very well (unlike a gable roof, which has a steep enough pitch to slough snow). So when an arctic storm like this rolls in - and that little snowflake icon shows up in the forecast - it means that we're working the night shift. Not only would it be a serious bummer to lose the greenhouses, it would be a big setback to have all the crops inside them get smooshed (right now that includes winter greens, lettuce, baby carrots, hakurei turnips, spinach, and other treats destined for the Winter CSA shares in the coming weeks). And so, I'll go digging for my winter camping gear, maybe light a little hobo fire in a burn barrel, and pack some extra mittens.

Stay warm, wish us luck tonight, and imagine happy farmers kicking and gliding across the snowy pasture tomorrow on x-country skis (sleep-deprived but delighted).