Winter CSA Week #6


This is for the sixth week of Winter CSA, which will be delivered on 1/30/18 or 1/31/18 depending on your pick up location.

Onions/Shallots Blue Goose Farm/Crighton Farm
Grassfed Ground Beef* Clarion River Organics
French Fingerling Potatoes – Clarion River Organics
Gold Raw Milk Cheese – Hidden Hills Dairy
Broccoli Microgreens – Harmony Grove Farm
Hydroponic Lettuce – Harmony Grove Farm
Lois Jean’s Slow Simmered Pasta Sauce – Kistaco Farm
Golden Beets – Riverbend Acres
Daikon Radish/Purple Radishes – Riverbend Acres/Tuscarora Organics Cooperative
Crimini Mushrooms* – Tuscarora Organics Cooperative
Whole Wheat Bread Flour – Weatherbury Farm

Gluten Free Shares will receive Farmers Market Salsa and Garlic in place on Whole Wheat Bread Flour

Vegan Shares will receive Farmers Market Salsa, Garlic, and Crimini Mushrooms in place of cheese and ground beef.

*If you responded to the survey indicating you were a vegetarian you will receive crimini mushrooms in place of ground beef.



Grower: Blue Goose Farm/Crighton Farm

Store: Sweet onions have a shorter shelf life than common varieties due to a higher water and sugar content. Thus, it’s important to store them properly. Ideally, sweet onions should be stored in a cool, dark, dry location and spread out for optimum air circulation. Most growers suggest placing onions in a clean pair of pantyhose, with knots tied in between each onion, then hung in a cool, dry place. Just snip off below each knot when you need one.  Stored properly, sweet onions should last in your

Recipe: Roasted Shallots and PotatoesCaramelized Onion Quesadilla, 5 Minute French Onion  Soup


Grassfed Ground Beef

Grower: Clarion Rive Organics

Store: The ground beef will come frozen, put it in your freezer if you do not want to eat it right away.  To defrost place in your refrigerator for a day, until completely thawed.


Recipe: One Pot PastaQuick Beef Chili, Slow Cooker Bolognese



French Fingerling Potatoes

Grower: Clarion River Organics

Store: Store potatoes in a cool, well ventilated place. Colder temperatures lower than 50 degrees, such as in the refrigerator, cause a potato’s starch to convert to sugar, resulting in a sweet taste and discoloration when cooked.


Recipe: Roasted Fingerling Potatoes, Garlic & Parmesan Fingerling  Potatoes



Gold Raw Milk Cheese 

Grower: Jaroskinski/Crighton/Keim Farm

Store: This cheese is made only in the summer months when the cows are on pasture to capture the natural golden color of the grass. Aged 5-8 months, this cheese works equally well on a cheese tray, baked in a casserole or paired with fruit. As “gouda” as it gets!




Hydroponic Lettuce

Grower: Harmony Grove Farm

Store: Leave the heads intact and unwashed until you use them. Then, place them in the crisper drawer in your fridge with some paper towels.They’ll absorb any excess moisture, so your lettuce doesn’t spoil prematurely.  Lettuce bruises easily, so be careful not to shove other foods up against it. Using a storage container is better than a bag, which can end up squished against other items.



Broccoli Microgreens

Grower: Harmony Grove Farm

Store: Keep microgreens between damp paper towels, and make sure they are cold and covered in a resealable bag or container. Wrapped this way, they’ll last in the fridge for about a week.

Recipe: Broccoli Microgreens Salad, Cooking with Microgreens, Mushroom and Microgreen Omelet


Lois Jean’s Slow Simmered Pasta Sauce

Grower: Kistaco Farm

Store:  Store in your pantry for up to a year! Ingredients: Fresh Tomatoes, Tomato Paste, Fresh Peppers, Sugar, Fresh Onions, Fresh Garlic, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Salt, Spices.  Made with tomatoes grown at Kistaco Farm!

Recipe: 50 things to make with Pasta Sauce


Golden Beets

Grower: Riverbend Acres

Store: Beet roots can be stored in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator for 7-10 days.  You can either store them loose or in a plastic bag.

Recipe: Roasted Golden Beets with Rosemary and Garlic, Golden Beets and Brussels Sprouts, Golden Beet Salad



Daikon Radishes/Purple Radishes

Grower: Riverbend Acres/Tuscarora Organics Cooperative

Store: Daikon is quite perishable, so if serving it raw try to use it within 4 days of purchase. If cooking daikon, it can be stored up about a week. Keep it in a perforated plastic bag in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator.  Keep purple radishes in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer, use within a week.

Recipe: Daikon Radish SaladBraised Daikon Radishes, Roasted Radishes with Brown Butter



Crimini Mushrooms

Grower: Tuscarora Organics Cooperative

Store: They’ll stay fresh for 5-7 days if you keep them refrigerated. Store bulk mushroomsin a paper bag in the refrigerator..

Recipes: Sauteed Crimini Mushrooms, Easy Roasted Mushrooms, Mashed Potatoes with Crimini Mushrooms


Whole Wheat Bread Flour

Grower: Weatherbury Farm

Store: Store in a cool place for several months.  Best when stored in refrigerator.

Recipe: One Hour Whole Wheat Bread, Soft and Fluffy Dinner Rolls








2012 CSA Harvest Share Week #19, October 10th

Thank you to everyone that signed up for a Winter CSA Share!  We met our goal for Winter CSA memberships over the weekend so we closed sign-ups to ensure that we have enough product to put in all the boxes this winter.  We are really looking forward to putting together some great boxes for you all this winter, and are especially excited about everything we were able to get processed this year.  In total, we preserved about 5 tons of produce from Penn’s Corner Farms- including tomatoes, tomatillos, onions, and peppers.  Canned tomato puree, tomato juice, and tomatillo salsa will be available in the Winter and Spring CSA, the Farm Stands, and also to many of our Restaurant and Wholesale customers.

Be sure to read this encouraging article about small farms making a comeback in the US! 


Each week we will ask you to review the contents of the previous week’s box.

We very much appreciate your taking this short survey as it helps us in a number of ways!

If you are on the Asparagus route please click here. Zucchini members can click here.



Asparagus Share

~ green cabbage head, Blue Goose Farm, CNG

~ 2# sweet red onions, Blue Goose Farm, CNG

~ lemongrass, Goose Creek Gardens, CNG

~ 1/2# turnip greens, Nu Way Farm

~ 4 ears sweet corn, Weeping Willow Farm

~1/2 gallon apple cider, Kistaco Farm

~ 6 jalapeno peppers, Matthew’s Farm

~ 1/2# green beans, Hostetler’s Farm

~ oakleaf and butterhead lettuce, Clarion River Organics, OG

Zucchini Share

~ lemongrass, Goose Creek Gardens, CNG

~ 2# rutabegas, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ 1/3# swiss chard, Nu Way Farm

~1/2 gallon apple cider, Kistaco Farm

~ 1# hot peppers, Crighton’s Farm

~ 1/2# shalots, Crighton’s Farm

~ 2# gold potatoes, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ butternut squash, Weeping Willow Farm

~ oakleaf and butterhead lettuce, Clarion River Organics, OG

3/4# green beans, Becarri’s Farm

OG- certified organic          CNG- certified naturally grown


Lemongrass is full of fantastic health benefits.  It is said to be a diuretic, calms the nerves, promotes digestion, eases nausea and insomnia, is a natural remedy for fever, anti-inflamatory & anti-cancer, among a host of other health benefits.  Try making some tea!!

Lemongrass Tea

Makes about 4 cups
2 to 3 stalks lemongrass, outer hard parts removed, cut into 3 to 4 inches pieces lengthwise
4 cups drinking water
2 tablespoons or more honey or agave syrup*

Put the lemongrass and water in a saucepan over high heat. When the liquid comes to a boil, reduce the heat to low and let it boil slowly for 30 minutes or until the water turns light brown and the room smells wonderfully of lemongrass. Remove the lemongrass stalks and add your choice of sweetener. Taste before adding more.
Serve lemongrass hot or cool completely before refrigerating. It will keep for several days in the refrigerator.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

These are a great thing to make ahead of time. You could assemble them tonight, let them rise in the fridge and finish on the counter in the morning (I instruct when, below) and bake them before you head out for whatever harvest festival/hayride/fall bliss you’ve got lined up this weekend.

Want to make your own pumpkin puree? Here’s how!

Yield: 16 to 18 buns

6 tablespoons (85 grams) unsalted butter, to be divided
1/2 cup (120 ml) whole milk, warmed (but not over 116 degrees)
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast (from 1 .25-ounce or 7 gram envelope yeast)
3 1/2 cups (440 grams) all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling out
1/4 cup (packed) (50 grams) light or dark brown sugar
1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
1 teaspoon (6 grams) table salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom (optional)
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
2/3 cups (160 grams) pumpkin puree, canned or homemade
1 large egg
Oil for coating rising bowl

3/4 cup (packed, 145 grams) light or dark brown sugar
1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon table salt
2 teaspoons (5 grams) ground cinnamon

4 ounces (115 grams) cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons (30 ml) milk or buttermilk
2 cups (240 grams) powdered sugar, sifted
Few drops vanilla extract (optional)

Make your dough: Melt your butter, and hey, if you’re melting it in a little saucepan, you might as well brown it for extra flavor. Once the butter has melted, keep cooking it over medium heat for a few additional minutes. It will become hissy and sizzle a lot, then take on a nutty flavor as golden bits form at the bottom of the pot. Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly.

Combine your warmed milk and yeast in a small bowl and set aside. After five to seven minutes, it should be a bit foamy. If it’s not, you might have some bad yeast and should start again with a newer packet.

In the bottom of the bowl of an electric mixer combine flour, sugars, salt and spices. Add just 1/4 cup (or two-thirds of; leave the rest for assembly) of your melted/browned butter and stir to combine. Add yeast-milk mixture, pumpkin and egg and mix combined. Switch mixer to a dough hook and run it for 5 minutes on low.

Scrape mixture into a large oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Set aside for 1 hour in a draft-free place; it should just about double.

While it is rising, line the bottom of two 9-inch round cake pans (8-inch round should work too, as does an 8-inch square) with parchment paper and butter the sides of the pan and the paper.

Assemble buns: Scoop dough onto a very well floured surface and flour the top of it well. With a rolling pin, roll the dough to an approximately 16×11-inch rectangle. Brush reserved melted/browned butter over dough. Stir together remaining filling ingredients and sprinkle mixture evenly over dough. Starting on a longer side, roll the dough into a tight spiral. It’s going to make a mess because the dough is crazy soft and some stuff spills off the ends; don’t sweat it. It will all be delicious in the end.

Here’s how to cut cinnamon rolls without squishing their pretty spirals: With a sharp serrated knife, using absolutely no pressure whatsoever (only the weight of the blade should land on the dough) gently saw your log with a back-forth motion into approximately 1-inch sections. When a soft dough like this is rolled, it tends to grow longer, which means that you’ll have the option to either make more buns (say, 18 instead of 16) or just cut them a little larger (in generous inches).

Divide buns between two prepared pans. You can sprinkle any sugar that fell off onto the counter over them. Cover each pan with plastic wrap and let rise for another 45 minutes.

If you’re doing this ahead of time, you can now put them in the fridge overnight. In the morning, leave them out for an hour to warm up and finish rising.

15 minutes before you’re ready to bake them, heat the oven to 350°F. Meanwhile, you can make the glaze. Beat your cream cheese until it is light and fluffy. Add powdered sugar and vanilla. Drizzle in milk until you get the consistency you’re looking for, either thick enough to ice or thin enough to drizzle.

Finish your buns: Remove the plastic and bake buns for 25 minutes, until puffed and golden and the aroma brings all the boys to your yard is like a snickerdoodle. Transfer pans to wire cooling racks and drizzle/schmear with cream cheese glaze, then have at them.


2012 Spring Share Week #8, May 30

With June right around the corner we have arrived at the last week of the 8 week Cabin Fever share.  We hope you enjoyed your spring boxes!  If you are not continuing on with the Harvest share we wish you a wonderful and bountiful summer and ask that you please remember to bring back your empty boxes this week!  If you are continuing on, we look forward to seeing with you what this summer brings.   Although we are cutting off sign-ups for the Harvest share on Wednesday, May 30th, we do keep a waiting list and often add folks on part way through the season.

If you are on the Asparagus route please take this very brief Survey Monkey survey to provide us with feedback on the quality of this week’s CSA items!  If you are on the Zucchini route use this surveyPlease remember that we are attempting to gauge quality not preferences.  If you wish you give us feedback on preferences please email Karlin.


Since this is the last week of the Cabin Fever share, PLEASE remember to return your empty CSA box this week!



Asparagus Share

~ 1/2# kale, Blue Goose Farm, CNG

~ 1/2# spinach, Nu Way Farm

~ 1/2# asparagus, Reeger’s Farm

~ romaine lettuce head, Nu Way Farm

~ red or green butterhead, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ spelt flour, Clarion River Organics

~ 1/2# chevre or goat milk feta, River View Dairy

~ 1/2 pint maple syrup, Weeping Willow Farm

~ green spring onions, Clarion River Organics, OG

Zucchini Share

~ 1/2# red kale, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ 1/2# spinach, Nu Way Farm

~ green butterhead lettuce, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ red butterhead lettuce, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ collard greens, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ spelt flour, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ 1/2# chevre or goat milk feta, River View Dairy

~ 1/2 pint maple syrup, Weeping Willow Farm

~ red spring onions, Clarion River Organics, OG

OG- Certified Organic                                                                   CNG- Certified Naturally Grown

*You won’t find any radishes in your share this week.  The hot, dry weather made them unbearably peppery and woody.


Penn’s Corner Farm Stands–

Just because your CSA is up doesn’t mean you can’t still get veggies, fruit, eggs, meat, cheese and more from you favorite Penn’s Corner farmers!  Farm Stand sales are open to CSA members and non-members alike.  The week before each Farm Stand pick-up, customers pre-order items from our online store.  Orders are then picked up at our current Farm Stand locations in Squirrel Hill, Mt. Lebanon, Lawrenceville or the North Side on the designated day.   Pickups go year-round but there is no obligation to order, order fees, or minimum order requirements.  Check out more info here on our website and take a look at some of the great stuff available this week!


Getting a little overwhelmed with Kale?  Try making some kale pesto! You can freeze it and use it just like you would pesto.  Check out this recipe and ideas for using kale pesto taken from the blog “Seaweed Snacks.”

Lemon Kale Pesto with Nutmeg

1 bunch dino kale or lacinato kale
1/2 heaping cup Parmesan
1/2 heaping cup pecans
zest of 1/2 lemon

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
pinch salt
1-2 tbls. olive oil (I used lemon crush olive oil)
1 tbls. fresh lemon juice
1 clove garlic minced
Roughly remove stems of kale. Add kale to pot of boiling water. Stir and cook about 45 seconds. Remove and rinse with cold water. Pick up kale with your hands and mold into a ball, squeezing out all the water you can. Really squeeze! Set aside

In a food processor, add the lemon zest, juice, salt, nutmeg, garlic and pecans. Pulse a few times to get it coarsely chopped. Add kale, and pulse while adding olive oil. Taste for salt and add more oil if it is too dry. This should not be oily like pesto. Only add enough oil so it is not dry.

Here are some ideas for using Kale Pesto
1. mixing it with chevre for a dip (I will!)
2. putting a spoonful over a grilled white fish
3. putting a spoonful on pasta tossed with butter
4. using it as a ravioli stuffing
5. eating it with a spoon like I am doing while typing this
6. sneak it into any vegetable soup
7. saute it with other vegetables like brussel sprouts or asparagus
8. eat it on a salad
9. put it in an omelet
10. filling for lasagna


Garlicky Greens Recipe

From the blog 101 cookbooks.  Recipe can be found online here!

If you are using spinach ignore the stem instructions below. With spinach I simply trim any long stems. Also, feel free to make this vegan and/or dairy-free by leaving out the Parmesan cheese. Toasted almonds or pine nuts are a great substitution (or addition).

1 large bunch of kale, chard, or collards
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
fine grain sea salt
5 cloves of garlic, crushed and chopped
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese (opt)
crushed red pepper flakes

To de-stem each leaf of chard/kale/collards, grab the main stalk in one hand and strip the leaf from the stem all the way up with the other. I then tear the big leaves into bite-sized pieces, but you can use a knife for this task if you prefer. Wash the greens in a big bowl (or sink) full of clean water, rinsing and swishing to rinse away any stubborn grit and dirt. Drain, rinse again, and set aside.

Hold off cooking the greens until just before eating. Then, in a large skillet heat the olive oil. Add a couple big pinches of salt and the greens. They should hiss and spit a bit when they hit the pan. Stir continuously until their color gets bright green, and they just barely start to collapse – two, three, maybe four minutes, depending on how hot your pan is and how much structure your greens have. Then, just thirty seconds before you anticipate pulling the skillet off of the heat, stir in the garlic. Saute a bit, remove the pan from the heat, stir in the Parmesan, and add a big pinch of crushed red pepper flakes. Taste, add a bit of salt if needed, and serve immediately if not sooner.

Serves 2- 3.


Rosemary Olive Oil Cake

“…you don’t need to use a specialty olive oil for this cake. But if you have one with a lot of flavor, the cake will be that much better. This is one of those recipes where I think using regular sugar is the way to go. There was plenty going on with the interplay between the rosemary, chocolate, and olive oil – and I’m not sure adding less refined brown or Muscovado sugar would have been the way to go. The last note I’ll make is to suggest chopping up a chocolate bar for this. It’s just not going to be the same if you use uniform chocolate chips. Aim for big chunks 1/2-inch in diameter, you’ll end up with all sorts of shavings and littler pieces as you are chopping, and having that mix of flecks and the big chunks is pretty great.”

-From the blog 101 cookbooks.  Read more about this recipe here!

Dry ingredients:
3/4 cup / 3 oz / 80g spelt flour
1 1/2 cups / 7.5 oz / 210 g all-purpose flour
3/4 cup / 4 oz / 115g sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Wet ingredients:

Olive oil for the pan
3 eggs
1 cup / 240 ml olive oil
3/4 cup / 180 ml whole milk

1 1/2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, finely chopped
5 ounces / 140 g bittersweet chocolate (70% cacao), chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
2 tablespoons sugar for top crunch


Preheat the oven to 350F / 175C. Rub a 9 1/2-inch (24 cm) fluted tart pan with olive oil. Alternately, I used a long (4 1/2 x 13 inch) loaf pan, and lined it with parchment paper.

Sift the dry ingredients into a large bowl, pouring any bits of grain or other ingredients left in the sifter back into the bowl. Set aside.

In another large bowl, whisk the eggs thoroughly. Add the olive oil, milk and rosemary and whisk again. Using a spatula, fold the wet ingredients into the dry, gently mixing just until combined. Stir in 2/3 of the chocolate. Pour the batter into the pan, spreading it evenly and smoothing the top. Sprinkle with the remaining chocolate and run a fork along the length of the chocolate so that the batter envelops it just a bit. Sprinkle with the second sugar.

Bake for about 40 minutes, or until the top is domed, golden brown, and a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. My cake, in the alternate pan, took closer to 50 minutes. Also, just when my cake was nearly finished baking, I decided I wanted a bit more color on top. I finished it under the broiler for a minute – which caramelized the sugar on top as well and gave it a bit of crunch. Don’t walk away from the cake while it is under the broiler.

The cake can be eaten warm or cool from the pan, or cooled, wrapped tightly in plastic, and kept for 2 days.

Serves 8 -12.

Recipe adapted from Good to the Grain by Kim Boyce.

Prep time: 15 min – Cook time: 45 min

Winter Share #5- February 14th

Round Up Time (not that kind of Roundup!)

This is the quiet time of year when the Penn’s Corner Farmers and staff do some general housekeeping and planning.  In fact, our annual Farmers’ meeting is just next week.  This is the one time per year that all of Penn’s Corner staff and growers get together under one roof to look back on the year that just passed and look forward to the year ahead.  We scrutinize, compliment, encourage, ponder, stew and project.  It is a wonderful thing to behold; some 30+ farmers and 4 staff members connecting in ways that sustain the coop for the entire year.

We talk about crop plans, quality control, expansion and so on.  If you are planning to be with us in the spring for the 2012 season this is a great time to let us know what products you would like to see if your CSA boxes this year!

Also, we are looking for additional pick up location in Regent Square, the North Hills, and on the campuses of Pitt and CMU.  Please let us know if you have any suggestions in these areas.




~2# Russian banana fingerling potatoes, Clarion River Organics, OG

~2# purple top turnips, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ wheat berry bread, Clarion River Organics, OG

~1 dozen free range eggs, Clarion River Organics

~ spelt, flour Clarion River Organics, OG

~2# daikon radishes, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ 2# white onions, Blue Goose Farm, CNG

~ Old Gold cheese, Hidden Hills Dairy

~ 3# Fuji apples, Dawson’s Orchards

~ 12oz honeybear, Bedillion’s Farm

OG- Certified Organic                                         CNG- Certified Natural Grown

Spelt Everything Crackers

Adapted from the New York Times Magazine, 11/28/08 who adapted it from the Hungry Ghost in Northampton, Mass.

Makes 1 large cracker sheet

1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups white spelt flour, plus more for flouring surface
Coarse sea salt, dried onion bits, poppy seeds and sesame seeds (for the everything bagel effect) or a seed combination of your choice

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Dissolve the salt in 1/2 cup of cold water. Stir in the spelt flour until combined. Knead the dough a few turns until a ball forms.

2. Flour an overturned 12-by-17-inch cookie sheet and roll out the dough on top of it, using as much flour as needed to prevent sticking, until the dough covers the sheet from edge to edge. Do your best to get them as thin as possible, because the thicker parts become quite hard when baked. Using a spray bottle filled with water, spray the dough to give it a glossy finish. Prick the dough all over with a fork. If you choose, sprinkle with sea salt or seeds. For neat crackers, score the dough into grids.

3. Bake until the dough is crisp and golden and snaps apart, 15 to 25 minutes. (Check after 10 minutes to make sure it does not overcook.) Break into pieces and serve.


Salt and Vinegar Broiled Fingerling Potatoes

Adapted from Martha Stewart Living, June, 2009. Cooked in 2 cups of vinegar, the potatoes taste very tangy (which some people love). For a milder version, try one cup white or malt vinegar and one cup water.
serves 4

1 pound fingerling potatoes, sliced lengthwise to 1/4-inch thickness*
2 cups white or malt vinegar
Extra virgin olive oil
Kosher Salt

1. In a small pot, combine the potato slices and vinegar. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer until fork-tender, about 8 minutes. Let cool in liquid for 30 minutes. Then drain well and pat potatoes dry with paper towels.

2. Preheat the broiler with a rack about 6 inches below the heat source. Dump the potato slices onto a sheet pan, sprinkle very generously with olive oil, salt and pepper, and toss to coat. Arrange the potato slices in a single layer. Broil until lightly browned on top, about 7 minutes. Then flip the slices and broil until the underside is lightly browned, about 5 minutes more. Serve warm.

*Please be careful with your own fingerlings when slicing. The potatoes can be a little slippery.


Mashed Turnip & Apple

Serves 4

Water, enough to cover turnips and apples, not salted
1 pound purple-topped turnips, trimmed, peeled and chopped into equal-size pieces
2 apples, peeled and quartered
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 tablespoon butter
1 talespoon cream
Salt & pepper to taste

Fresh grated nutmeg

Bring the water to boil while the prepping the turnips. (To save a dish, pick a saucepan that you can also do the mashing in.) Add the turnips, cover and let simmer for 15 minutes. [TURN THE OVEN ON TO 300F.] Add the apples and cook for another 15 – 20 minutes, until turnips are fully cooked (a knife should slip in and out with no trouble). Drain and return to hot pot. Mash til smooth (a little texture is good, these mash very easily with a hand masher). Add the wine, butter and cream. Season to taste.

Transfer to a baking dish (individual ramekins look kinda cool …) and top with nutmeg. Bake for 30 minutes. Reheats well in the microwave.


Pickled Daikon and Red Radishes with Ginger

  • 1 1/2 pounds daikon radish, peeled
  • 1 bunch red radishes (about 10), trimmed and each cut lengthwise into 6 wedges
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar (not seasoned)
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon very thin matchsticks of peeled ginger

Halve daikon lengthwise, then cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Transfer to a large bowl and toss with radishes and kosher salt. Let stand at room temperature, stirring occasionally, 1 hour.

Drain in a colander (do not rinse) and return to bowl.

Add vinegar, sugar, and ginger, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Transfer to an airtight container and chill, covered, shaking once or twice, at least 12 hours more (to allow flavors to develop).

Cooks’ note: Pickled radishes can be chilled up to 3 weeks.


Week 23- September 13th/14th

Dinner time…

Sharing dinner with friends and family is simply the best.  In addition to preparing meals for my immediately family all week long, I look for any excuse to invite company to share our mealtime.  Having grown up in a house where everyone was welcome, I am a firm believer that more is merrier.  A couple of close friends and I have begun what we like to call “family dinner”.  We get together once a week with children and spouses to prepare and devour dinner together.  As of late we have taken to giving our dinners a theme.  Everyone makes a dish or two and we alternate hosting the events.  Recent themes have been: tomatoes and basil, a Homemade Life (food memoir mentioned a few weeks ago), and anything grilled.

Try throwing your own pot luck style theme dinner with friends.  A CSA box is a theme all of it’s own!  Once a week is a little ambitious but once a month is downright reasonable and if you send us some photos and your menu we will include it here on our blog.


Last week's Tuesday share.




~ fennel, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ 4 ears bread and butter corn, Beccari’s Farm

~  pint edamame, Nu Way Farm, CF

~ 2# honeycrisp apples, Kistaco Farm

~ green onions, Goose Creek Gardens, CNG

~ heirloom beets or tomatoes or Asian eggplant, Pucker Brush Farm, CNG/Blue Goose Farm, CNG/ Kistaco Farm

~ 1.5# new gold potatoes, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ green and yellow beans, Weeping Willow Farm, CF OR Hostetler’s Farm, CF

~ 1# Roma tomatoes, Clarion River Organics, OG


~ 1.5# heirloom tomatoes, Nu Way Farm, CF or Weeping Willow Farm, CF

~ 1.5# white potatoes, Weeping Willow Farm, CF

~ 3# Jonamac apples, Dawson’s Orchards

~ rosemary, Goose Creek Gardens, CNG

~ 1# Asian eggplant, Sunny Meadow Farm, CF or Blue Goose Farm, CNG

~ sweet pepper medley, Blue Goose Farm, CNG or Crighton’s Farm

~ green kale, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ red kuri squash, Clarion River Organics, OG

OG- Certified Organic                                                              CNG- Certified Natural Grown                                                   CF- Chemical Free


Fennel Orange Muffins

From Asparagus to Zucchini

  • 1 medium seedless orange, peeled
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups grated fennel
  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Oil muffin cups (or use those amazing paper liner thingies) Puree orange in blender, then combine wtih eggs, oil, sugar, vanilla and fennel in a bowl.  Sift flour, baking powder and salt, then gently fold into wet ingredients.  Do not over mix.  Spoon into muffin cups; bake 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Makes 8-12 muffins.


Gratin of red kuri squash

November 05, 2008

Serves 4

Like many varieties of winter squash, red kuri squash (also known as Japanese squash, orange hokkaido, or uchiki kuri squash) offers a promise of nourishing dinners. With its bright orange skin, and small teardrop shape, you’ll easily recognize kuri; inside, the firm flesh has a creamy chestnut-like flavor. Baked, braised, steamed, or pureed, this squash tastes wonderful; serve it as a side dish or use it as a base for soups. For this simple gratin, you don’t need to peel the squash. Roast, steam, or boil it with potatoes, then puree them, and stir in grated zucchini. Add ricotta, parsley, and a flavorful cheese (blue works well), or a milder one (Fontina, which melts nicely). After half an hour, you have a delicious side dish that will make you rejoice over fall’s harvest.

Butter (for the dish)
1 small red kuri squash (a generous 1 pound), seeded and sliced
2 baking potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 small zucchini, grated  (just skip it if you don’t have one available!)
2/3 cup ricotta
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, plus more for the top
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1/2 cup grated Fontina or crumbled blue cheese
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 tablespoon butter, cut up (for the top)

1. Set the oven at 400 degrees. Butter an 8-inch square baking dish.

2. In a large saucepan fitted with a steamer insert, combine the squash and potatoes. Bring to a boil, cover the pan, and steam over high heat for 15 minutes or until the vegetables are tender when pierced with a skewer.

3. Using a food mill or ricer set over a bowl, work the vegetables to form a puree. Or mash them with a potato masher until they are coarsely pureed. Add the zucchini, ricotta, nutmeg, parsley, 1/4 cup of the Fontina or blue cheese, and plenty of salt and pepper.

4. Transfer the mixture to the baking dish. Smooth the top. Add the remaining 1/4 cup cheese, butter, and a sprinkle of nutmeg.

5. Bake for 30 minutes or until the top is golden. Let the dish rest for 5 minutes before serving. Béatrice Peltre


Tuesday member can find out how to prepare their edamame in last week’s post.


Crighton’s Stuffed Peppers

Chris Crighton from Crighton’s Farm was kind enough to share her stuffed pepper recipe with us.  Of course, Chris cooks in bushels! This recipe is a precious and genuine reminder of how different city life is compared to farm life.  Chris and James have 6 children so I’m sure that it didn’t take them all that long to go through a bushel of stuffed peppers.  Use this recipe as a guide to making your own stuffed peppers at home.

Hi Karlin.  Only some guesswork and common sense will break this down into the amounts other people might make.  I only work with bushels!
1 bushel red, green, bicolor bell or elongated sweet Carmen peppers.
about 15 lbs. low fat ground beef (may add pork, veal, or lamb)
1 loaf whole wheat bread broken into half inch pieces
almost 2 pounds brown or white uncooked full time rice
1 peck really ripe tomatoes
about 12 sweet onions chopped small
1 dozen eggs
4 cups old fashioned oatmeal
Remove tops from peppers; clean out insides.  In a really big container (I use a rubbermaid plastic bin or bowl) put in cold meat, bread, all the rice, oatmeal, onions, eggs and chopped tomatoes (skin and all) and dig in with your hands (gloves if you like) and mix and mix.  If it doesn’t get creamy and pasty, add a quart of milk.  Mix and mix,  More milk if needed.
Fill peppers.  Put tops on if you saved them and like the look.  Put the amount that fits into your slow cooker in a package of your choice (zip bag, container with lid, freezer paper).  Freeze immediately.
To cook, place into your slow cooker and add tomato juice or sauce about half way up.  Cook on high at least 8 hours with lid on.  By using the slow cooker, all the juices and flavors meld.
In case you think I forgot the salt, we don’t use salt.  If you do just use what suits your tastebuds along with any other herbs and spices.

Week 11- June 21st/22nd

This week’s CSA boxes are filled with fantastic, spring goodies.  Think strawberry cake, or a lovely summer salad beautifully garnished with ripe strawberries and chevre.

Clarion River Horses working the fields.

I know that many folks tend to turn their nose up at iceberg-type lettuce but don’t judge too quickly.  For starters, the Certified Organic crisphead lettuce that you will be getting from Clarion River Organics is fresher, tastier and I’d like to suggest, more nutritious that the iceberg that you come across at the grocery store.  If I’m being fair, I should clarify that I don’t have any hard data to prove that last claim but I think you might agree with my wild guess once you see it!  It has color to it which is sadly lacking in commercial varieties, it is pleasantly crisp and tastes, well it tastes like lettuce (also in contrast to commercial iceberg which tastes like nothing).  Look for preparation suggestions below.

The berries are as lovely as ever this week and we have gotten some from the Hostetler’s Farm for the first time this season.  Linda and Joe Hostetler sold their old farm and moved to a new one this winter so they are farming new land for the first season.  This presents all sorts of new challenges, none of which were lessened by the endless rain this spring. Better late than never as they say!  Our returning members may remember the Hostetler’s incredible green and yellow beans from last summer.  We look forward to enjoying them again before too long.




~ 1 quart strawberries, Hostetler’s Farm, CF

~ 4 ounces chevre, River View Dairy

~ red cripshead lettuce, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ Tropicana lettuce head, Blue Goose Farm, CNG

~ green onion bunch, Goose Creek Gardens, CNG

~ collard greens, Kistaco Farm

~ cut lemon thyme, Goose Creek Gardens, CNG

~garlic scapes, Crighton’s Farm, CF

~ 1 cucumber, Kistaco Farm


~ 1 quart strawberries, Sunny Meadow & Weeping Willow Farm, CF

~ 4 ounces chevre, River View Dairy

~ green cripshead lettuce, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ Romaine lettuce head, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ green onion bunch, Nu Way Farm, CF

~ Swiss Chard, Goose Creek Gardens, CNG

~ cut cilantro, Nu Way Farm, CF

~ garlic scapes, Clubhouse Gardens, CF

~ squash blossoms, Clarion River Organics, OG

 OG- Certified Organic  CNG- Certified Natural Grown CF- Chemical Free

Garlic Scapes

Click here to see a photo of garlic scapes if you aren’t  already familiar with them.  You can also read this Washington Post piece for ideas on how to use them!


Squash Blossoms:

Remember to check last week’s blog for ideas on how to use squash blossoms!


Heritage Seed Company Kick Starter Project

The Heritage Seed Company is an organization devoted to Community Building, Digital Mapping and Seed Saving Resources.  Their mission is to bring back the lost foods of our country and teach interested gardeners the value of fresh. local, and heirloom produce.  They are also going to provide support and encouragement for more families to plant gardens and seed save/trade. The Heritage Seed Company is committed to preserving the past with the help of modern technology and social media.

They are using the increasingly popular Kickstarter funding platform to raise funds for their cause.  Please visit their page to read more about their mission, goals and accomplishments and consider a donation.  Any amount is welcomed.


Crisphead Lettuce  

Classic uses for this lettuce include wedges served with blue cheese dressing, lettuce wraps, or simply washed and placed lovingly on your favorite sandwich.   


If, by any chance you are willing to not eat every last one of your berries right when you get them I urge you to try this amazing, crazy-easy strawberry cake recipe.  This year’s aromatic strawberries find the perfect opportunity to shine in this cake.  I think that I have made 8 of these these cakes in the last two weeks: for teachers, for my husband and for the heck of it!  Lightly whip some cream to accompany it and enjoy. Thank you Smitten Kitchen!  

A couple of my own notes: 1. I used about 1/2 cup of spelt flour in a few of my cakes and really like it but the ones with all white flour were lovely too.  Use whatever you like, and 2.  I put slightly less than a cup of sugar in my versions.  I’d say somewhere between 1 and 3/4 cup each.  It was plenty sweet that way.  

Strawberry Summer Cake

I recently picked up some barley flour and fell in love with it. We tend to associate whole grain flours with heartiness and heaviness, but this is neither — it’s silky and delicate, like the best cake flour you’ve ever bought, and it has a subtle creamy, nuttiness to it that goes fantastically with berries. This cake works like a dream with 100% all-purpose flour but if you’ve got barley flour around, swapping it in for half the volume is beyond delicious, adding a real depth to a deceptively simple cake.

I am ever-so-slightly on the fence about the sweetness of this cake. I like it, but I wouldn’t hate the batter itself with 2 tablespoons less sugar (i.e. 7/8 cup sugar instead of a whole one). If that’s your inclination, go ahead and dial it back as well. Leave the sugar on top. It contributes to the berries turning into jam.

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus extra for pie plate
1 1/2 cups (188 grams) all-purpose flour (can swap 3/4 cup or 94 grams all-purpose flour with 3/4 cup or 75 grams of barley flour, see Note)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1 cup (200 grams) plus 2 tablespoons (25 grams) granulated sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup (118 ml) milk
1 teaspoon (5 ml) vanilla extract
1 pound (450 grams) strawberries, hulled and halved

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a 10-inch pie pan or 9-inch deep-dish pie pan (what I used).  This cake does not work in a standard 9-inch pie pan; it will overflow. This cake also works, however, in a 9- or 10-inch springform or cake pan. The 10-inch would make a thinner cake than pictured.

Whisk flour or flours, baking powder and salt together in a small bowl. In a larger bowl, beat butter and 1 cup sugar until pale and fluffy with an electric mixer, about 3 minutes. Mix in egg, milk and vanilla until just combined. Add dry mixture gradually, mixing until just smooth.

Pour into prepared pie plate. Arrange strawberries, cut side down, on top of batter, as closely as possible in a single layer (though I had to overlap a few to get them all in). Sprinkle remaining 2 tablespoons sugar over berries.

Bake cake for 10 minutes then reduce oven temperature to 325°F and bake cake until golden brown and a tester comes out free of wet batter, about 50 minutes to 60 minutes. (Gooey strawberries on the tester are a given.) Let cool in pan on a rack. Cut into wedges. Serve with lightly whipped cream.

Do ahead: Cake can be stored at room temperature for up to 2 days, loosely covered, but good luck with that.

Week 5- May 10th/11th

The weather yesterday and today seems like an amazing, surprise gift that no one was expecting.  I spoke with David Yoder early this morning and he told me that his insides were “jumping around” because he was so excited about the weather and getting into his fields.  A little later I got an email from Bill Foulk from Clubhouse Gardens.  He delivered some garlic to Nu Way Farm this morning and had this to say about the Yoder’s Farm:

Saw David out in the field working up the ground with his horses.  This was before 7:00 this morning!  It sure was a pretty site.  You should have been there.

You may or may not have come across this PG article about Pennsylvania farms this weekend.  The short story is that, as a region, we are weeks behind schedule for many important crops.  The upshot is that there is still a good possibility that today’s weather will stick around and that most farms can end up with a good growing season after all.  It’s anyone’s guess!  While none of us likes to consider a summer with less of the foods that we’ve spent months dreaming of the lesson, or point or reminder here is a salient one: real food is grown.  There are men and women and beasts that toil under conditions of weather, the global economy (grain and oil prices), and the particulars of their own lives to grow food for our community.  We could all take a stroll to the nearest grocery and buy garlic from Peru, broccoli from California and canned pumpkin from who knows where but many of us choose not to.  It’s a choice that connects you with your place, your farmers, and your food.

On a related but different note, technology is amazing!  After hearing from Bill Foulk about the horses at Nu Way Farm I rang our driver Clint.  I knew that he was on his way to David’s to pick up products for our Farm Stand later today.  I told Clint that I’d love it if he could take a few photos with that Droid of his and send them along to me.  I asked him to photograph some horses if he happened to see any.  So thanks to Clint and his 3G network, here are some shots from Nu Way Farm this morning.  David’s 15 year-old son Josiah in the photographs.  Many of you may remember Josiah’s cherry tomatoes from your CSA last year. He is growing for us again this year!

Josiah Yoder and the horses at Nu Way Farm

Good morning Nu Way Farm!

I guess this is what Bill Foulk was talking about.


If you are a Cabin Fever member and want to add the Harvest Share to your membership now is the time!  The additional 24 week share can be added to your membership and paid in full or in installments.  Be sure to contact Karlin before we are sold out.

                                THIS WEEK’S HARVEST


~ green butterhead lettuce, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ 1/2 dozen eggs, Clarion River Organics

~ pea shoots, Pucker Brush Farm, CNG

~ Forbes cheese, Hidden Hills Dairy

~ green garlic, Clubhouse Gardens, CF

~ 1/4# spinach, Nu Way Farm, CF

~ wild foraged ramps, Nu Way Farm, CF

~ 1# wheat berries, Clarion River Organics, OG


~ green butterhead lettuce, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ Forbes cheese, Hidden Hills Dairy

~ 1/4# spinach, Nu Way Farm, CF

~ wild foraged ramps, Nu Way Farm, CF

~ 1# wheat berries, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ apple butter, Kistaco Farm

~ 1# rhubarb, Nu Way Farm, CF

 OG- Certified Organic                                      CNG- Certified Natural Grown                                          CF- Chemical Free

Chef’s Corner

This week Bistro 19’s Executive Chef, Jessica Gibson has been kind enough to share some recipes with us.  Jessica has been at Bistro 19 since its opening five years ago.  She is a Pittsburgh native and worked at the Carlton for some time.  If you haven’t been to this Mt. Lebanon establishment you should check it out!  They serve lots of wonderful local food with a creative flair.

Wheatberry Salad

1 cup wheatberries
2 cups spinach chopped
2 ramps chopped
1/2 cup forbss cheese (chopped or shredded)
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoons lemon juice
2/3 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon dry oregano
Cook the wheat berries in 3 cups of salted water for about 45 minutes until soft.  Chill and mix the berries with remaining ingredients and serve. Season with more salt and pepper.
Baked Fish with Ramp Pesto
4, 5 oz white fish filets (cod, tilapia, trout, snapper or whatever you prefer)
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
10 ramps
1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup toasted pinenuts
1/4 cup grated parmesan
1 cup spinach leaves
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees, place fish on parchment paper lined baking sheets and sprinkle with olive oil. Bake for 15 minutes. While baking combine all pesto ingredients in a food processor until well combined and pour over fish evenly and bake 5 minutes more or until fish flakes with a fork indicating that it is fully cooked.


Green Rhubarb

Rhubarb comes in many varieties. While most of us think red when we think of rhubarb, there are several green varieties. Some are a little green, some mostly green and others are nearly all green. Any rhubarb, no matter the color, that you find in our CSA box is mature and ready to be eaten.  As I understand it, while the deep red variety may be more popular, these plants are often accompanied by less substantial growth and yield. In contrast, green varieties are often much more productive.

Our pole last week indicated that most of the respondents love rhubarb, a few hate it and a decent number of you aren’t sure how to use it.  One of the things that is important about using rhubarb is to not over think it.  Here are a few recipes to start with.

Rhubarb Compote

Wash and slice your rhubarb.  Simmer it on the stovetop in a pot with a little water (maybe a 1/3 cup or so).  Once the rhubarb begins to cook and fall apart, add the sweetener of your choice (sugar/honey/ maple syrup/agave nectar).  This is all about taste so if you like it tart, just sweeten it a little.  If you don’t dig the tartness you can add more sweetener.  You can also add some frozen or fresh strawberries if you like.  Simmer it until the rhubarb is soft.  This make take 20 to 30 minutes.  Spoon this over pancakes, your breakfast yogurt (my fav!) or of course, ice cream.  It never lasts long at my house but I would suspect that it would keep just fine for at least a week in the refrigerator.

Rhubarb Muffins

I’d love to credit this recipe to someone but I don’t know who that person might be.  A friend got it from a friend.  You know how that goes.  So, I’ll just thank my friend Susan for sharing it with me.  Theses muffins are seriously delicious.

1 1/2 cup white flour

1 cup whole wheat flour (or spelt!)

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 to 2 1/2 cups buttermilk  or plain yogurt

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup oil

1 egg (beaten)

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3 cups rhubarb diced.

1/2 cup nuts (toasted and chopped)

1/4 cup sugar

1 tablespoon butter (melted)

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon flour

Combine first 5 dry ingredients thoroughly. Then in a separate bowl, mix the next five wet ingredients well. Stir dry ingredients into wet until just moistened.  Don’t over mix.  Add rhubarb and nuts into batter.  Fill greased (or those use those paper thingies) muffin tins two thirds of the way full.  Then combine last  4 ingredients and sprinkle on top of muffin batter.  This should make about 18 muffins.

Bake at 375 for 20 minutes.


Washing your produce

We would like to offer a gentle reminder to always wash your produce.  This applies to Penn’s Corner product as well as anything else that you purchase.  While we try to be sure that our products are never “dirty”when you receive them, nothing is washed.  It is always a good and safe bet to wash produce before you consume or cook it.

On that note, I know that washing greens gets lots of people down.  I often hear that people, “just don’t feel like cleaning lettuce” or greens, or “I’d eat it if it were already clean”.  My recommendation is this:  buy a good salad spinner.  Don’t get a gadgety one with bells and whistles because those bells just break!  I stand by my Oxo.  With the exception of maybe our dishwasher, it is the most used item in our kitchen.  I fill that baby up with water, place my chopped greens in the water and swish them around a while.  (This is a great job for kiddos if you have any that like to help in the kitchen.  Just remind them to be gentle with the greens in order not to bruise them!)  Once the greens have been swished for a bit just lift the basket out of the bowl, empty the bowl, place the basket back in there and spin away.  You can get the greens quite dry and then store any extras in a plastic bag in the bottom of your refrigerator.