Circle S Farm delivery Monday, July 16 and MSFM pick-up Wednesday, July 18, 2018

“Bees do have a smell, you know, and if they don’t they should, for their feet are dusted with spices from a million flowers.”
Ray Bradbury, Dandelion Wine

The zinnias are gorgeous right now.  They are a burst of color and make me smile whenever I walk down the row.

It is the time of year of endless bounty.  And it will end soon.  My refrigerator is packed.  I can’t even decide what to make for dinner because there are so many veggies coming in right now.

Farm News:  The summer bounty is coming in.  Your bucket will be crammed with goodies because August is looking slim.  I haven’t been able to replant much for fall because of rain, bugs and weeds – so I’m working on it!!  In the mean time – squirrel away some potatoes and cabbage just in case:)

What’s in the bucket:  eggplant or peppers, green beans or field peas, sweet corn, tomatoes….tomatoes…..tomatoes, savoy cabbage, okra, red white and blue potatoes, garlic, parsley, blueberries.

What’s at market:  green beans, field peas, sweet corn, tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, cabbage, blue and red potatoes, carrots, parsley, zinnia bouquets.  Circle S Beef: roasts, ground beef.

One of our shareholders gave me this recipe.  She said it was a real crowd pleaser.  I haven’t made it yet, but have everything I need and I’m planning on making it this week.  It would go great with some garlic mashed potatoes and a bbq chicken!

 

Happy eating and thanks for buying local food from Circle S Farm!!

Letty

Circle S Farm delivery Monday, July 9 and MSFM pick-up July 11, 2018

“Garlic is divine. Few food items can taste so many distinct ways, handled correctly. Misuse of garlic is a crime…Please, treat your garlic with respect…”
Anthony Bourdain, Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly
This is our barn cat Tootsie.  I pulled the garlic early this year for fear it would rot.  I needed a dry place for it to air and cure, so I put it in our hay barn.  Tootsie took a liking to laying under the garlic.  Seriously – she was always right with it.  I’m not sure if she was warding off vampires or fleas:)
Farm News:  It is a cooler day today.  Much deserved for animals and people.  Temporary relief from the flies, heat and humidity.
I was so excited about my peanut crop.  I planted peanuts for the first time in years.  I weeded and weeded and weeded the rows but could not, for some reason, keep up.  I finally gave up and mowed them down.  Couldn’t even see the peanut plants anymore, they were lost to all the pigweed and grass.  Failures and disappointments…..rats.
What’s in the bucket?  NOT peanuts……  last week for broccoli, first week for okra.  Also, summer squash, cherry tomato, daikon, carrot, garlic, hot peppers, green beans, and hopefully a few blueberries.
What’s at market:  beets, carrots, red, white and blue potatoes, cabbage, savoy cabbage, basil, celery, flowers.  Beet the heat special:  free quart of beets with any $10 purchase.
If you have some potatoes laying around, it may be a good week for garlic mashed potatoes.  Also – if you still have daikon, carrots and cabbage lurking in your fridge – how about a quick batch of kimchi.
Me, myself.  I will be making a quick batch of green bean salad to eat and keep in the fridge for a quick lunch!!
Green Bean salad
  • 1 lb green beans
  • 2 T lemon juice
  • 2 t olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove smashed or minced
  • 1 T chopped Fresh basil
  • 1/4 t kosher salt
  • pepper
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes
  • grated sequatchie cove gruetli cheese or parmesan

Trim and cook green beans until crisp tender.   Plunge into ice water.  Drain in colander

Mix next 6 ingredients together for dressing.  Toss over green beans and add cherry tomatoes and grated cheese.

Happy Eating and thanks for buying local food from Circle S Farm!!

Circle S CSA delivery Monday, July 2 and MSFM pick-up TUESDAY, JULY 3, 2018

“Laughter is America’s most important export”   -Walt Disney

Good to remember!!

This week will be short and sweet because of the holiday.  Please don’t forget, the market is on Tuesday this week.

Farm News:  Logan left today.  He promised me we would all take a picture for the blog before he left – but alas, I let him get away:(  We had so much fun – a week is just not long enough!

Flower shares have started!

What’s in the bucket?  Cucumbers, broccoli, cabbage, squash, blue potato, green beans, beets, carrots, basil.

What’s at market? fennel, cucumbers, broccoli, Napa cabbage, red bibb lettuce, green cabbage, celery, carrots, beets, green beans, summer squash, cilantro, parsley, red/white/blue potatoes.  Circle S Beef:  ground beef, roasts, steaks.  Fourth of July Special:  buy one package ground beef or steaks, get one quart red white and blue potatoes FREE.

If you are grilling out for the holiday – try adding something green!!  Grilled broccoli is easy and adds something nutritious to the meal!!

Grilled Broccoli

One head of broccoli – cut into large spears

drizzle of olive oil, sprinkle of salt and pepper, toss together in a bowl

Grill until tender and lightly charred, 15 minutes or so.  Sprinkle with lemon or red pepper.

Thanks for buying local food from Circle S Farm and Happy 4th of July!!

Circle S Farm delivery Monday, June 25 and MSFM pick-up Wednesday, June 27, 2018

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”   –Thomas Edison

My onion crop was a failure this year.  Utterly.  I did not have one single onion out of the 1000 that I planted that made a mature onion.

You may say – well that’s OK.  However, those who know me know that I am an onion lover.  I care for my onions, and this is the first year of 15 that I have not raised a crop.   Other things fail, but not onions!

I must have inherited my love for onions from my mother – who does not think a salad complete with out a big slice of purple onion.  A beautiful and proper southern lady, she is not afraid of what she would call the “halitosis” and always carries a mint or so in her pocketbook.  My friends laugh at me because while they are avoiding the repercussions of onions – I am eating mine and theirs too.   The truth is alliums have all kinds of health benefits – mainly known for their ability to fight infection.  So I”m going to go with that as my excuse.

Farm News:  My onion crop failed.  The flies are still terrible.  It has been a bit cooler with the rain this week – that is a plus.  But the biggest news…..LOGAN is coming this week.  I will try to get him to the market with me so everyone can have a chance to visit with him.  He will be here a week and I am so excited to see him.

What’s in the bucket:   Cucumbers, broccoli, Napa cabbage, beets, squash, white potato, fennel, cilantro, celery.  Note:  the girls and I had lots of fennel casualties when  we cultivated the fennel this week.  I think they are getting tired of their garden work!

What’s at market:  cucumbers, Napa cabbage, beets, squash, white potato, fennel, cilantro, red bibb lettuce.  Circle S Beef:  Roasts, ground beef, steaks, stew beef.

Napa cabbage salad with a mexican twist

    • 1/4 cup rice vinegar (not seasoned)
    • 2 teaspoons sugar
    • 1 teaspoon grated peeled ginger
    • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
    • 1 fresh serrano chile, finely chopped, with seeds
    • 1 small head Napa cabbage (1 1/2 pounds), cored and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch slices
    • 1 bunch scallions, sliced
    • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped cilantro

PREPARATION

    1. Whisk together vinegar, sugar, ginger, oil, chile, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Add remaining ingredients and toss well. Let stand, tossing occasionally, 10 minutes.

I am taking this salad to a family party tomorrow.  Let you know if it’s a crowd pleaser.

Happy Eating and thanks for buying local food from Circle S Farm.

 

 

Circle S Farm CSA delivery Monday, June 18 and MSFM pick-up Wednesday, June 20, 2018

“Birds are the eyes of heaven, and flies are the spies of hell.”
Suzy Kassem,

Above – beautiful daikon radishes Jennifer and I pulled and I am storing.  Don’t worry – you’ll see them again:)

Farm News:  The flies are terrible this year.  We had a two year respite because of the drought (only thing good about a drought!).  They were late last year and never really got going – but they are here with a vengeance this year.

You will remember this duo.  Curtis and his horse Rock.  I’ve told you before, Rock is the second love of my life.

Yesterday, I was pulling weeds in the garden and noticed the horses running.  The flies have been bothering all of them, ‘spies of hell’.  I bought fly masks for them to keep the face flies out of their eyes, and periodically spray them with essential oils to repel flies.

But yesterday was serious.  I noticed Rock seemed really stressed, borderline psychotic.  He was lathered with sweat.  He had rubbed his fly mask off and was bobbing his head neurotically and kept bumping the other horses.   I went to check on him and he was panicky – covered in flies and breathing hard.  I brought Rock and the other two horses into the corral.   I started with Rock and sprayed them all off with cool water from the hose.  You could feel the relief in his body language – he lowered his head and started yawning.  Then I sprayed him with fly spray and he didn’t move for a period of time – seemed to be finally resting.

It is important to realize Rock lives up to his name.  He is not easily upset.  He does not worry.  He is entirely trustworthy.  It was unnerving to see him so out of control.  We have him in a lot next to the house now where we can hopefully monitor and control the flies.  Can’t let that boy get into such a state of panic again!

What’s in the bucket?  basil, cilantro, fennel, kohlrabi, last of the lettuce, yellow zephyr squash, heirloom zucchini, snow and sugar snap peas, red norland new potatoes, turnips, Daikon and baby kale.

Curtis and I had this delicious salad the other night – so don’t give up on turnips yet!!  Daikon will work as well, or some of each.  This will make 4 small salads or two dinner salads.

Kale and Turnip salad

  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated peeled ginger
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 small white turnips, peeled, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 medium sweet-tart apple (such as Pink Lady), cut into matchsticks
  • 4 oz. kale, leaves sliced thin as with slaw
  • 1 teaspoon poppy seeds, plus more
  • Whisk first four ingredients together.  Arrange veggies on plates.  Add poppy seeds to dressing and lightly dress each salad.

Serve with:  stuffed zucchini or zucchini noodles

Just a warning.  The zucchini are getting out of hand.  You may receive a prize winner.  Don’t despair – they are great for stuffing, frying, making noodles or shredding for zucchini bread.  I threw a handful of shredded zucchini into Curtis’s meatloaf just for fun – he said it was delicious.  Just discard the innermost seedy part.

Happy Eating and Thanks for buying local food from Circle S Farm!

Circle S Farm CSA Delivery Monday, June 11 and MSFM pick-up Wednesday, June 13 2018

“As the sun shines I will make hay
To keep failure at bay
For there remaineth a pay
For my honest toil each day.”
 Ogwo David Emenike

 

 

I am so lucky to have Jennifer helping me this year.  Here she is putting beautiful bunches of radishes together!

 

 

Farm News:  Curtis is cutting hay.  He put up 100 round bales last week with the smallest bit of help from me.  Hay is incredibly dependent on weather.  It is a challenging job when mother nature makes the calls!!  And if one is paid in honest toil, Curtis would certainly be a millionaire.

To be continued….. from last week.

After Henry pushed Opie through the fence and out into the field Curtis and I looked at each other.  We knew we needed to move fast to get their attention.  Luckily, the two bulls split and Henry went one direction and Opie ran down the fence.  I grabbed a bucket and went to get some feed (one reason to feed an animal every once and a while:).  We towed Henry back into the lot with Windy.  Even though the fence was in shambles – he stayed in.  Then we had to track Opie down.

Being new, he doesn’t know where all the gates are etc.  He came back up the fence I guess to challenge Henry again.  We lucked out and got him through the gate and into the corral.

Needless to say, we made a plan B.   After fixing fence, we turned Opie out in the lot next to Henry and Windy.  They went through all their shenanigans again, but had a fence between them.  I was afraid they would tear the fence down to get to each other, but they did not.  After about two weeks of living next door, Opie and Henry had settled.  We decided to try turning them out together again.

It was a rainy day.  The ground was wet.  We waited until Henry was down in the woods and not paying attention – opened the gate and let Opie through.  Then we crossed our fingers and waited.

They did tangle a bit.  Henry pushed Opie around the pasture and he slipped a time or two, but luckily no fences down.  After about 30 minutes they settled and have been quiet ever since….

What’s in the Bucket? Kohlrabi, lettuce, turnips with greens, summer squash, a few snow or snap peas, mustard or kale greens.

Kohlrabi are an excellent treat raw.  Chop them up in your salad and enjoy!!

If you are tired of greens, they freeze wonderfully and are so enjoyable mid-summer when they are out of season, or in the winter with a bowl of pinto beans and cornbread.  Just wash them, chop them and plunge them into boiling water for 2-3 minutes.  Then let them cool and freeze them in bags or containers.  You can mix and match – throw them all in there together.

What’s at market?  spinach, arugula, mustard greens, kale, leaf lettuce, bibb lettuce, summer squash, turnips with greens, Daikon radish.

Turnip and greens gratin

  • 5 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 3 medium onions, thinly sliced
  • Kosher salt
  • 3 bunches turnip, mustard or kale greens, ribs and stems removed, leaves torn
  • 4 medium turnips (about 1¾ pounds total), trimmed, peeled, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 3 large eggs, beaten to blend
  • 4 ounces Fontina cheese, grated (about 1 cup)
  • 1 ounce Parmesan, finely grated (about 1 cup)
  • 8 ounces day-old white country-style bread, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • Freshly ground black pepper

RECIPE PREPARATION

  • Bring garlic, cream, and thyme to a bare simmer over medium heat. Reduce heat to low and let cream simmer 30 minutes. Let cool.

  • Meanwhile, heat 1 Tbsp. butter in a large skillet over medium-low. Add onions, season with salt, and cook, stirring occasionally and adding a splash or two of water if onions begin to stick to pan, until caramelized and amber colored, 45–60 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool. Wipe out skillet.

  • Heat remaining 1 Tbsp. butter in same skillet. Working in batches, add greens, tossing and letting it wilt slightly before adding more; season with salt. Cook until greens are wilted and tender, 5–8 minutes; transfer to bowl with onions.

  • While greens are cooking, cook turnips in a large pot of boiling well-salted water until crisp-tender, about 2 minutes; drain. Transfer to a bowl of ice water and let cool. Drain; pat dry. Transfer to bowl with onions.

  • Preheat oven to 375°. Whisk eggs, Fontina cheese, Parmesan, and cooled cream mixture in a large bowl to combine. Add onion mixture and bread; season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a 13×9″ baking dish and press down on mixture with your hands to form a tight, even layer. Bake gratin, uncovered, until well browned, 40–50 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.

  • Do Ahead: Gratin can be assembled 12 hours ahead. Cover and chill.

 

Happy Eating and thanks for buying local food from Circle S Farm.

Letty

 

 

 

Circle S Farm CSA delivery, Monday, June 4 and MSFM pick-up Wednesday, June 6

“TMT, too much testosterone. Way more dangerous than  TNT.”
― Robert L. Slater

 
 Meet Henry
Henry is 6 years old.  Smart and ambitious – if a little dramatic.
Meet Windy.  Windy is 4 years old.  Lazy and slow, he is a bit of a dreamer.  And he snores.
Meet Opie.   Opie (otherwise known as Pete) is 3 years old.-  Opie is new to Circle S
We got a new bull 2 weeks ago.  We bought him from friends, who delivered him and stayed for a bit of a visit.  We put him in the corral.
Our bull, Henry, knew immediately that he was there.  I don’t know how – but he came out of the woods and started pacing the fence.  Pawing and acting aggressive, really putting on a show.  Rubbing his head in the dirt and vocal – hard to describe the vocal part.   It sounded like “I’m gonna kick your –”  in bull  (guess that’s why they call it bull).
Windy stayed in the woods, taking a nap during all this.
So – Curtis and I decided to give them, Henry and Opie a few days to get used to each other before we turned them out together.  5 strands of High Tensile fence and a corral barrier to hold them apart.
A few days later when all the drama had died down, we opened the corral gate and sent Opie out into the 5 acre paddock with Henry and Windy and 5 strands of High Tensile electrified wire.  Bad idea.
For about 2 minutes everything went OK.  Henry and Opie eyed each other, but left well enough alone.  Then – somebody must have said something….it was on.
Henry immediately pushed Opie through the five strands of high tensile electrified wire (rated for 100,000 pounds or something ridiculous like that.)  It was like a cartoon – one by one those wires broke….snap, crack, snap.  Curtis and I just stood their and watched with our mouths open (well, I might have said a few expletives).  Thinking they’d be hung up in the corral once he pushed him through the fence, I wasn’t too worried.  UNTIL – he pushed him through the gate (which I had not latched…darn!!) and out into the field.  I’m thinking….we are about to loose our new bull into the wild blue yonder.
TO BE CONTINUED…..
Farm News:  We got a new bull.
I am looking forward to a week with not so much rain.  The girls and I have our work cut out for us.
What’s in the Bucket:  We are going greens this week:  Daikon radish greens with baby daikons, kale, arugula, spinach, bibb lettuce, leaf lettuce, romaine lettuce, radish, semi-green garlic (pulled it out last week), spring onion, beet greens.
What’s at Main Street Market:  Daikon radish greens with small radishes, mustard greens, kale, collard, bibb lettuce, leaf lettuce, romaine lettuce, beet greens.  Circle S Beef:  ground beef, roasts, steaks.
If you are wondering what in the world to do with Daikon radish greens, below is a simple recipe.  They are much like turnip greens – so any turnip green recipe will certainly work too.

Sautèed Daikon Greens with Onion, Garlic and Lemon

2 tsp sesame oil
1/2 onion, cut in thin half-moons
pinch of sea salt
1-2 garlic cloves, chopped small
3 bunches daikon greens (1 bunch is the amount from 1 radish), washed and chopped, and small radishes if still attached
a few slices of fresh lemon

1.  Heat a large sautè pan on medium heat. Add the oil. Add the onion and sea salt as soon as a little piece gently sizzles in the oil. Sautè, stirring frequently for about 5 minutes or until onion starts getting translucent.

2.  Add the garlic and sautè for 2 minutes.

3.  Add the daikon greens and stir until the greens get coated with the oil and onions. Add a Tbsp or two of water. Cover and let cook until tender, 3-4 minutes.

4.  Remove from heat. Add squeezes of lemon juice when serving, and slice the radishes super thin and use as a garnish

Happy Eating and thanks for buying local food from our farm.

Letty

Circle S Farm CSA Delivery Monday, Memorial Day, May 28 and MSFM Pick-up Wednesday, May 30

“Heroism doesn’t always happen in a burst of glory.  Sometimes small triumphs and large hearts change the course of history.”  -Mary Roach

I am reading a book about the rescue of thousands of horses in WW2 by a small group of American soldiers.  A split decision made without complete authorization.  The Lipizzaner breed and the Spanish Riding School would not exist as it does today had it not been for these soldiers.  And they made this decision towards the end of the war – they were tired and hoping to actually make it home.  They went behind enemy lines to help a captured soldier save these horses.

When asked why save the horses, Colonol Frank Reed said “We were so tired of death and destruction.  We wanted to do something beautiful”.

“small triumphs and large hearts…”

A Kill Deer is making a nest in my garden.  A beautiful nest right next to the spinach.  So far, I have dodged it with my horses and my hoe – not an easy task.  For those of you who aren’t familiar…. the Kill Deer acts distressed when you get near her nest.  She limps and drags a wing, it is the most ridiculous thing to see.  I’m thinking this is nature at her worst, but apparently it works because we have Kill Deer all over the farm.  The other day she was doing it right in front of my horses.  Smart, right?

Farm News:  So far, I have not ruined the Kill Deer’s nest.  I will be picking spinach this week, I’m sure it will drive her nuts.  The rain is making my garden so weedy, and that is driving me nuts!!

What’s in the Bucket? Red and green lettuce, spinach, arugula, radish, beet greens, spring onions, mustard greens, kale.

Young beet greens are wonderful raw.  Mix a few in with your arugula salad – or lettuce salad.  Beet greens are good for inflammation – joints, arthritis etc….I am planning to eat my share!!  Also, beet greens are good lightly sauteed with a sprinkle of rice vinegar.

**Note:  This week is supposed to be really rainy.  It is hard for me to get the spinach, arugula, beet greens dry before I put them in the bag.  You may want to spin them in your salad spinner, and put them in a different container right away so they will keep longer.  Same is true for the lettuces and other greens if they are wet when you receive them.  A paper towel in the bag helps with moisture as well.

Recipe of the week:

Shakshuka with Braised Mustard Greens
Serves 3-4 
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 spring onions, chopped (use the entire onion including the greens)
4 cloves garlic, sliced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 pound fresh tomatoes, cored and diced, or 1 28-ounce can whole tomatoes (juices mostly drained if using canned)
3 cups mustard greens, chopped
3 ounces feta
cilantro for finishing (optional) and thinly sliced radish
3-4 eggs

Heat olive oil on medium-high in a large skillet. Add onion and garlic, cook for 3-4 minutes until soft then stir in cumin, sweet paprika, salt, and pepper. Cook together for 2-3 minutes, stirring continuously. Add in the diced tomatoes and bring to a boil. Reduce to medium-low heat and let simmer for 15 minutes. Add in the chopped mustard greens then use the back of a large spoon to make burrows for the eggs. Crack the eggs into the tomato sauce and let cook until set, or longer if you prefer.   Top with crumbled feta, sliced radish and cilantro. Serve with corn tortillas and cooked white beans or with pita or hunks of crusty bread.

Happy eating, Happy Memorial Day and thanks for buying local food from Circle S Farm.

 

 

Circle S Farm CSA 2018 sign up information

“Why do farmers farm, given their economic adversities on top of the many frustrations and difficulties normal to farming? And always the answer is: “Love. They must do it for love.” Farmers farm for the love of farming. They love to watch and nurture the growth of plants. They love to live in the presence of animals. They love to work outdoors. They love the weather, maybe even when it is making them miserable. They love to live where they work and to work where they live.

-Wendell Berry

Well, it is that time of year again.  We are looking forward to our 2018 season, the girls and I.   For the moment, the cold winter is making us miserable and we are ready to trade it in for heat and sweat and the work that makes us feel useful.  Please help our farm make it through another fruitful season and sign up for our 2018 CSA.

Circle S CSA sign up 2018

Main Street Farmers Market Falltoberfest this Wednesday, October 25

“If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien

I have been so lucky to get to be a part of Main Street Farmers Market.  The vendors and customers are a wonderful group of people who care about their community, the environment but most importantly, good food!  Please come out and support our Falltoberfest event this Wednesday.

Activities include music by Ryan Oyer (www.ryanoyer.com), facepainting, pumpkin decorating, a festive photo area, the Chattanooga library “book nook”, a fermenting demonstration by Harvest Roots and lots of great food including: popcorn from Riverview Farms milling, a sausage sampler from Hoe Hop Valley Farm, caramel apples and hot cider from Wheelers Orchard, and food from The Green Tambourine and Syrup and Eggs. The event will take place at Main Street Market, on the corner of Main Street and Chestnut Street.  Chattanooga Brewing will give a free beer ticket to the first 50 people who make a purchase at the market.

Thanks for buying local!