Current Newsletters

Posted 11/15/2014 10:53am by Don Kretschmann.

Greetings from the Kretschmanns,

   We're approaching one of the most delightful parts of the season for these farmers. Energy seems to return as the heat and humidity subside. Sleep increases as daylight decreases. Backs straighten as we pick tomatoes higher on the plant, we stretch up for apples rather than bending for beets. The sky itself has been transformed from summer haze to autumnal crisp. To the eye, clouds roam closer. Perspective returns. We like the fall.

   Every season, after the spinach is finished ("What spinach?", you say, this season), we till the residue and replant with green beans for the fall. These are generally the best of the season. Our mechanical bean picker makes this not such daunting task nowadays. Back in the day, we used to spend many hours pulling along our split wood bushel baskets picking beans by hand, racing to finish the planting before they got too old and tough. It was always a good time for long conversations because the beans didn't pick all that quickly and one wasn't moving around the field much--just squatting and pulling pods from the plants.    We usually plan to pick a planting of beans over a two week period. Last week's heat and rain had brought on such a volume of beans that the plants couldn't support them and fell over. This made picking very tedious.   Things would only get worse by next week, so we decided to pick them all now. Enjoy the bonanza. Blanche in boiling water and freeze them if there's too many for now. 

     I was tempted to steal a tomato from those Becky was roasting in the oven to make tomato sauce. They were great little sweet tidbits when placed on a cracker with a bit of cheese. We did a little experiment last Sunday slicing tomatoes of all different colors into thick rounds, placing them on an oiled cookie sheet, and roasting them for half an hour or more in the oven until they were carmelized. Reds, yellows, pinks, Green Zebras, Purple Cherokees--they were all delicious and sweet enough to think you were having a desert. These roasted rounds would make a memorable pizza, or mixed into hot pasta with shrimp hot pepper and cheese--a great diablo.   We'll gladly reuse any of the plastic pints from the blueberries and the boxes from the canning tomatoes. No other types please.

Enjoying the wondrous moon lantern in the evening sky, we are                                                  Don, Becky, & the Farm Crew  

For Extra Purchase: Canning tomatoes: $20/half bushel (subject: tomatoes)  Greens: Collards, Kale, Tuscan Kale or mixed--$35/bu. box (as big as the plus size box) Rhubarb: 5#-$15 Hungarian Hot Wax Peppers: $25/half bushel Always our favorite for canning year in and year out as pickled Italian hot pepper rings.

Suzie's Chunky Salsa (small batch): Oil baking pans and spread 2# tomatoes cut into small pieces. Roast @350 deg. until they are cooked well and start to dry on the top and brown slightly. Place in tomatoes in pot and mash until they look saucy. Add 1 chopped tomato, 1/2c. diced onions, 1 diced pepper, maybe 1/4 finely diced jalapeno, 1clove minced garlic, dash black pepper, 1/4 tsp paprika, teaspoon sugar, 1/4 tsp chili powder, tsp. vinegar, dash salt, and 1 tbs. tomato paste. Mix and bring to boil. Simmer until onions and peppers are cooked, then put in pint jars or just allow to cool and refrigerate. You should have salsa for a while...

Szechwan Green Beans-- Heat wok or heavy skillet med-hot. Add 2-3 tbs. sesame oil, then 2# trimmed green beans. Stir fry 5 min. Then add 8 cloves minced garlic, 1/2 tsp salt, and crushed red pepper (or minced Jalepeno) to taste. Stir fry several more minutes. Remove & serve warm or at room temperature.

Eggplant rolls (Involtini): Remove stem and cut eggplant lengthwise into 1/4" thick slices. Sprinkle slices with salt, layer, and let sit one hour. Pat dry. Preheat oven 350 deg. Brush with eggplant olive oil, and arrange on oiled cookie sheet, bake until just starting to color (about 5 min.) Remove & cool. Mix 1 c. ricotta, 1/2 c. breadcrumbs, zest of a lemon, tsp. fresh thyme, tbs. lemon juice, dash salt. Put small amount of tomato sauce in bottom of 9x9 baking dish or other pan. Place dollop of mix on end of each eggplant slice, roll up, then place in pan seam side down. Place 1 tbs cream on each roll, bake @425 20min. or until sauce pretty much thickens away. Sprinkle with grated parmesan.  

Posted 11/15/2014 10:50am by Don Kretschmann.

Greetings from the Kretschmanns,

   Becky was appalled! How could we have picked such bad looking basil? As I was putting together the recipes for this newsletters with all the variety of tomatoes we have right now, recipe after recipe was rejected simply because we had no basil. But we do have basil--just not very nice looking. But the flavor and aroma is there. We've included a bunch for you, much of which you will toss, but the remaining leaves are worth it all. Hope you enjoy it.    You might think it very odd, but the beautiful broccoli we picked yesterday was a surprise to us. We check the centers of cole crops fairly often to give us a hint of when to expect the crop to mature. With tomato picking happening every moment we weren't dancing around raindrops, and getting all the potatoes, beets, and carrots harvested, we just didn't notice the broccoli until Monday morning! It's very unusual to have any broccoli, much less such nice broccoli in the heat of summer. We regularly plant our late cole crops just after the 4th of July. They are very heat and drought stressed for the first month or so and then come out of it and begin growing well about the end of August. Not this year. With the weekly monsoons, all the crucifers were out of the gate fast and they haven't slowed a bit. It's the very first time we've been simultaneously picking canning tomatoes to beat the band, while tossing broccolis out of the field filling binsful.

   The first cover crops of the 2014 season were seeded last Saturday in anticipation of the rains. Nice to have a few fields put to rest for the duration, recuperating, and building fertility and diversity. Farming can be stressful for nature--and I think you can sense--for farmers as well.

   We're just starting to see a glimmer of light at the end of the tomato tunnel. The earliest varieties are nearly done, main season slicers are about in the middle, and the heirlooms continue, but slowly succumb to "the blight". We planted lots more paste type varieties this year to extend the harvest, but also to allow a little wiggle room for harvest. These plum types allow us to ignore picking for a few days to a week, without the fruit becoming mushy/soft. They also store well in the barn. Cherry tomatoes get ignored for the time being because they are just too time consuming to pick. Later, we catch up to them when others are done.

We'll gladly reuse any of the plastic pints from the blueberries and the boxes from the canning tomatoes. No other types please.

"Seeing red", we are --Don, Becky, & the Farm Crew  

Email organization:  You must imagine how much mail we get. To organize it, we sort by subject. Please try to anticipate this by using our suggested subjects when we offer them and don't use one subject with an urgent message about another subject. Like a last minute out-of-town box cancellation with a subject of "tomatoes" The message will go to the tomato file and we won't see it until too late.

For Extra Purchase: Canning tomatoes: $20/half bushel (subject: tomatoes)  Greens: Collards, Kale, Tuscan Kale or mixed--$35/bu. box (as big as the plus size box) Rhubarb: 5#-$15 Hungarian Hot Wax Peppers: $25/half bushel Always our favorite for canning year in and year out as pickled Italian hot pepper rings.

This is one of our favorite summertime recipe. Quick and easy to make. It's a disaster any other time of the year.

Pasta a la Georgina: Saute 2 lg. cloves chopped garlic and about an equal amount of finely diced fresh ginger in 2 T oil. Add about 1# fresh ripe tomatoes, cut in chunks, and simmer. (15 min+-) Cook pasta, drain. Add 1 c. chopped fresh basil to tomatoes just before serving. Sprinkle pasta servings with grated mozzarella cheese and top with sauce. A great 20 minute meal!

Tomato Pie: for 1 pie crust. Core and cut up 2# ripe tomatoes into 1/4" slices, layer on dough. Sprinkle on top 3 tbs. chopped basil or thyme and 1 c. shredded sharp cheddar. Mix 1/3 c. mayonaise, 1/2 c. chopped onion, 1 c1ove minced garlic. Spread this mix over the cheese, then top with another 1/4 c. shredded cheese and 3 tbs. chopped parsley. Bake @375 deg. 35 min. until pie set and crust browned. --Tara Conroy

Garbanzo Bean Salad. Combine 1 1/2c. cooked garbanzo beans, 2 c. chopped tomato, 1/2 c. black olives, 1 c. sliced onions, and 1/2 c. Italian dressing. You can add chopped cilantro or parsley also. The garbanzos (chick peas) are easy to make in a crock pot as they take a long time to cook. The rest is quick and easy.

Red Potatoes and Green Beans- Boil 8-10 med. quartered potatoes until just tender. Steam ½ # green beans until bright green. Combine potatoes, beans, 2/3 can smaller black olives, 1 chopped med onion (red are pretty). Whisk or blend 2-3 tbs. horseradish mustard, 2-3 cloves minced garlic, ½ c. olive oil, ¼ c. wine or balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper to taste. Pour dressing over vegetables and toss well.  

Posted 11/15/2014 10:45am by Don Kretschmann.

Greetings from the Kretschmanns,

   Tomatogeddon is here!  And it's great.  We expect one of those crops like "the good old days" because we planted three fields rather than the usual two, one of which is nearly all San Marzano types.  We're hoping this will tend to isolate the "late blight" fungal disease as it slowly progresses from the most susceptible to the least, and from the earliest to the latest tomatoes.  What's making it an especially nice season is that we've had very regularly spaced rain events which has maximized the size and minimized the degradation from cracking which usually takes it's toll particularly on the non-hybrid heirloom varieties.

     With the corn, cabbage, tomatoes, and melon, last week this made for quite an over-the-top box.  This week with even more tomatoes--including boxes of canning tomatoes--and everything else, we're encouraging the delivery guys to down a few steroids along with their morning Wheaties!

       As nice as those crops have been, peppers have been just about the reverse, mostly because the deer ate about 1/3 of the planting just after we set them out.  But it's caused us to rethink peppers because we seem to have had nearly enough green bells to suffice.  We have attempted over the years to supply lots of those treasured sweet red bells.  Many people think (and we initially did as well) that it's a different variety, but actually reds are just a fully ripe green bell pepper.  Our PA growing season is just not long enough to produce volumes of red bell peppers.  And some cooler summers, one gets very few.  Likewise you lose many many fruit, just waiting for them to turn.  So perhaps it's just not worth fighting our climate to produce so few red peppers.

     We've got bit of a red summer crisphead lettuce and then no more for at least two weeks.  So enjoy the gorgeous romaine while it's here.

   The Prima apples are ready to pick, but there was just no room at all in the box this week for anything else. 

   We'll gladly reuse any of the plastic pints from the blueberries.  No other types please.

  "Seeing red", we are--Don, Becky, & the Farm Crew

  If for any reason you want a box canceled please put "vacation" in the subject line.  We get so many e-mails that we will miss it otherwise.  We regularly go through those messages and take appropriate action, whereas the general mailbox has plenty of things on which action is delayed and they just accumulate.  If we've indicated you should use another subject line for something else, please use that too, and segregate messages where appropriate.  Eg. don't put a request for tomatoes in a message about wanting a box canceled.

For Extra Purchase:  Canning tomatoes: $20/half bushel (subject: tomatoes)  Greens:  Collards, Kale, Tuscan Kale or mixed--$35/bu. box (as big as the plus size box)  Rhubarb: 5#-$15  Hungarian Hot Wax Peppers: $25/half bushel  Always our favorite for canning year in and year out as pickled Italian hot pepper rings.

  With all the great tomatoes right now, it's certainly the time to enjoy  fresh tomato sauces.  We've discovered that there's an extremely easy way to cook them without burning them in a pot on the stove--roast them in the oven.   Wait until tomatoes are very uniformly ripe and slightly soft.  

Roasted Tomatoes:  Use any shallow pan--like a ceramic roaster, 9x13" cake pan, or other.  Brush with oil, then cut tomatoes in half, quarter or eighth.  You can use the whole tomato, no need to remove stem unless it's very unripe.  Place on racks in the oven @350 deg. or less if you aren't around to watch.  Roast until the tops of tomatoes are just starting to blacken and the liquid is nearly all reduced.  Tomatoes can then be used directly in a whole tomato sauce, or put through a mill--like Victoria Strainer or Folley Mill--to make a smooth sauce.  Some of those dark ones on the top are like candy and can be set aside, cooled and used as a side dish or on crackers with cheese.   

Simple Pasta for Tomatogeddon  --Chop 3 tomatoes, 1 carrot, 1/2 c. pepper, 1 clove garlic. 1/4 c. onion.  Saute in tsp. oil until tomato provides liquid to simmer and cook veggies.  Add salt, 1 tsp. caraway seed, papper and 1 (optional) sausage.  Toss over pene.

Posted 11/15/2014 10:37am by Don Kretschmann.

Aug. 19, 2014

Greetings from the Kretschmanns,

   We're into the thick of tomato season. With the very consistent rainfall we are seeing some of the nicest tomatoes we've ever had. We gorge ourselves like autumn bears preparing for a long winter without. Remember that tomatoes should never go in the fridge unless they are dead ripe and in danger of going bad. We keep ours at a cool summer temp in the basement of the barn as they slowly ripen. We've got quite a selection right now, from the common to the exotic. Be sure to take note of the yellow pear salad tomatoes--a variety called Blush which are the clearly the sweetest ones of all. Generally, it's best to use any none red slicing tomato first, because these tend to soften quicker. The longest lasting are always the plum or paste tomatoes. Some of our favorites for taste are the Arkansas Traveler--round, pink, and smaller than the Pink--which can be giant sized and have a sweet flavor. Curiously, they are also early.   Look on our website, if you'd like to know the variety names.

    We've been digging the carrots and coming up with quite a cache. We remember one summer student helper who used to love to pull carrots because it was always such a treasure hunt. With all the rain, we're filling bin after bin of potatoes as well.

   Some veggies just have us wondering, and chuckling.

   Other than the early basil which we plant in the greenhouse in late spring and then harvest in June, this has been the worst field basil season in memory. Each planting has encountered problems. Basil is not really finicky, but it always likes heat. This has surely been a much cooler summer than normal. By now, we've given up more field planting and have planted the remaining basil seedlings in the greenhouse. We apologize for the subpar leaves we've included this week. We only do so because it's a real crime not to have some basil with the great tomatoes which are coming in right now. The small bag contains both thai basil and Italian basil. The thai basil doesn't seem to be as fussy as Italian basil.

   We'll gladly reuse any of the plastic pints from the blueberries. No other containers, please.    The payment for the second half of the season is now due. It's not reflected in the balance above, but we'll be working on getting that updated for next week.

Reveling in a great tomato crop, we are--Don, Becky, & the Farm Crew

P.S. After all your hundreds of comments, the gas compressor station was approved by our local board of supervisors last Thursday. We were advised to expect the approval, but it was still a shock. We've very much considering an appeal. If you're interested we'll be posting updates.  

If for any reason you want a box canceled please put "vacation" in the subject line. We get so many e-mails that we will miss it otherwise. We regularly go through those messages and take appropriate action, whereas the general mailbox has plenty of things on which action is delayed and they just accumulate. If we've indicated you should use another subject line for something else, please use that too, and segregate messages where appropriate. Eg. don't put a request for blueberries in a message about wanting a box canceled.

  For Extra Purchase: Organic Blueberries (hopefully one more week): $30/6 pints; $58/12 pint flat ("Blueberries" in the subject line) Greens: Collards, Kale, Tuscan Kale or mixed--$35/bu. box (as big as the plus size box) Rhubarb: 5#-$15 Canning tomatoes: $20/half bushel (subject: tomatoes)

No other time of the year would one even think about this, but in the heart of summer tomato season!

Caprese Salad: Slice tomatoes, mozzarella sliced 1/4" thick, chop basil. Dress with olive oil, salt. Slivered onions are great too. Variation: Cherry tomato, leaf of basil, cube of mozzarella on a toothpick

Roasted Tomato Pizza: Brush a cookie sheet with oil. Lay tomatoes sliced 3/8-1/2" thick on the cookie sheet. Brush with olive oil and dust with garlic powder and bake about 1/2 hr at 350 deg. until they start to dry out a little. When the pizza crusts are ready, carefully move the tomato slices with a pancake flipper and arrange to nearly cover the pizza. Sprinkle a small amount of grated mozzarella on top and then top with vegetables sauteed slightly in olive oil with garlic (suggestions: peppers, zucchini, mushrooms, and onions). One can also add a little blue or gorgonzola cheese to the veggies.

Tomato Bruschetta (“Italian salsa”): Dice up tomatoes, peppers, and onions. Mix with shredded basil. Salt and pepper to taste. Toast your favorite bread or ideally, French baguette, rub with garlic and top with mix.

Becky’s Spicy Dill Slaw—Shred ½ med. cabbage (use a slicer or knife so the strands of cabbage are about the thickness of a nickel). Coarsely grate ½ onion, 1 carrot, 1 pepper, and 1 small red medium hot pepper.. Toss ingredients well with ½ tsp salt, 4tbs vinegar, 4tbs honey, 2 tbs mayonnaise, and spinkling in 2 tbs. finely minced dill so it’s evenly distributed. If you don’t have a hot pepper, or are uncertain how spicy you’d like it, just add cayenne or hot pepper flakes to taste.  

Tomato ID: The lineup of tomato varieties in addition to several slicing red and yellow varieties includes: 1. the heirlooms Cherokee Purple, Arkansas Traveler, Green Zebra 2. the saladette varieties Juliet and Blush 3. the Roma or plum varieties San Marzano, Plum Regal, Monaca, and Italian Gold 4. our own unique family heirloom we call Big Pink. We've posted pictures of most of our more unusual tomatoes on our website.  

Posted 8/14/2014 12:58pm by Don Kretschmann.

Aug. 12, 2014

Greetings from the Kretschmanns,

   About this time of the season, everything starts to take on that blur which Star Trek fans recognize as the jump up to warp speed.  We've gotten progressively more organized; picking lettuce, bunching greens and herbs are done by 7:30; zucs and cucs are hussled by one crew, while others pick apples; planting; picking; packing; delivery.  We have been peddling faster and faster. It creeps up on us almost imperceptibly. All of a sudden the days get fuzzy around the edges as we survey "the whole catastrophe" (as Zorba would say)--tomatoes as far as the eye can see, many bins of potatoes to dig, cabbage and onions filling the coolers to the ceiling, and so many buckets of beautiful orange carrots we can't walk to the apple cooler. How did it get to be mid-August?

   Potatoes this season are Red Marias. These are new to us. We've always grown the red Chieftans because of their high tolerance to potato blight. We couldn't obtain the seed this spring and the seedsman convinced us that the Marias would resist disease as well and give a better yield too. It gave our daughter, Maria, a good chuckle. Yield has indeed been good, though because of the moisture or variety, we're not sure. Marias are much more uniform in size and we're looking forward to digging a lot more.

   We've been a little stingy with carrots so far this season, mostly because there's been such a surplus of nearly everything else. But August is high time to get them out of the ground. So Saturday, Todd offered to come in and help our Mexican helpers to round up our accumulating roots. They started pulling onions early and then went on to digging carrots. By the time I got to the barn to begin sending them through the root washer, there were already more than I'd anticipated. The drive chain on the washer was jumping off the sprocket every few buckets and causing me to fall behind with the accumulating roots. When it broke entirely, I quickly fixed it, but wasn't sure that would last. So I went to buy a new chain, leaving Todd to deal with the washing. Returning empty handed, I found the washer not functioning, and worse yet, the pressure washer broken. Quickly borrowing another from a neighbor, we washed carrots by hand until 5:00. Meanwhile Angel, Erasmo, and Martin were picking tomatoes. Then we dug potatoes until late in the evening. Though, we almost never work on Sunday, with heavy rain predicted for Monday and Tuesday, I asked them if they could come Sunday half a day to finish picking up onions drying in the sun and wash the tomatoes. They assented and asked about digging more spuds. I left it up to them if they wanted to.

   6:30 AM Monday we picked one load of lettuce and immediately marked rows and planted the next batch of lettuce plants. As we finished, it was starting to drizzle. We picked tomatoes until we were chased from the field by a heavy shower. Back at the barn, we had a full day's worth of packinghouse chores--bagging carrots, washing and boxing potatoes, washing lettuce and tomatoes.

   It seemed crazy at the time to be out such long hours Saturday and Sunday. After 1.25" of rain and still counting on Monday, we looked like prophets.

   This will likely be the last week we have blueberries in the veggie boxes, but we'll have some for sale by the flat. We'll gladly reuse any of the plastic pints from the blueberries. No other containers, please.

Tearing thru summer, enjoying the free water, we are                                                  Don, Becky, & the Farm Crew

For Extra Purchase: Organic Blueberries: $30/6 pints; $58/12 pint flat ("Blueberries" in the subject line) Greens: Collards, Kale, Tuscan Kale or mixed--$35/bu. box (as big as the plus size box) Rhubarb: 5#-$15

I'd say this is the best soup recipe I know of. Really a special recipe.

Carrot Soup With Dill Pesto: Saute 4 large carrots, 1 onion and and 1 tsp dill seeds in 2 tbs butter until tender, about 10 minutes. Add 4 cups broth and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer until carrots are very tender, about 35 minutes. Transfer soup to blender in batches and puree. Thin with more broth if desired. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Combine 1 c. fresh dill and 2 tbs pine nuts or sunflower seeds in processor and chop finely using on/off turns. Then slowly add 2 tbs olive oil and process until well blended. Season to taste with salt and pepper.. Ladle into bowls. Swirl pesto into soupbowls. One variety of celery was succumbing to disease and since they were planted rather randomly with another variety, we harvested them all before they grew to normal size so that we wouldn't have a mass of weeds. We thought you might be able to use the thinner stems for a great summer potato salad.

Potato Salad: Cook 2# potatoes until just tender--don't overcook. Remember, just like pasta, they will keep cooking after they are done on the stove because they are still hot for a good while. Remove from heat, cool, and either slice or dice, whatever you prefer. Add 1-2 c. diced celery. Dress with 1/2c. mayonaise, salt, and 1 tbs. celery seed. You can also add diced or sliced hard boiled eggs.  

Note: We rotate the herbs around but if you want a specific herb for a special dish, just send an e-mail with "herbs" as the subject. Current selection is fresh dill, cilantro, thai basil, thyme, oregano, and basil (though basil not in large quantities right now).  

Posted 8/14/2014 12:54pm by Don Kretschmann.

Aug. 5, 2014

Greetings from the Kretschmanns,

  In all the strife fighting the gas development near us, we've been pleased and comforted that it has engaged two of our daughters, Anne and Maria. We asked them if they wanted us to pursue this difficult and uncertain path. They not only assented, but have pitched in fully--filming, writing, organizing, researching, and setting up a facebook page to field the info and keep the farm linked to those who would care. 

  And the farming itself swirls around us. That image comes to mind because in planning the farm tasks Saturday morning, I looked up the coming weather on Intellicast and saw a very clear pattern of rainclouds swirly around a center point just to our West in Ohio. As the day progressed the center of rotation shifted ever so slowly toward us. Late in the afternoon, the clouds finally parted and we had clear sunny skies, but one could see clouds in every direction on the horizons. It was like we were in the eye of a hurricane! And sure enough, as evening arrived we were back in the torment.

   All the moisture has certainly brought on wonderful successions of crops; and even more successions of weeds. Many "spring" crops, like kale, chard, and collards normally wane in the heat and drought of midsummer, but not this year. Even rhubarb has regrown with all the rain.   Likewise the lettuces have been wonderful. This is doubly surprising because we've not used any irrigation at all for lettuce this year! We've irrigated mainly crops like zucchini, cucumbers, and onions which we grow on plastic mulch which sheds the natural rainfall. So the pond is nearly up to the brim, full of water. We can see clearly the winter level marked by cattail stubs which we wacked off at the frozen ice surface in winter. It's a real contrast to the water level we have sometimes seen this time of the season many years. In between picking and packing the veggie boxes, we've continued to plant, two more planting of green beans for September, another two fall broccoli plantings, cauliflower, cabbage, and kale. Another seeding of carrots and beets which will race the cold weather for October harvest, has germinated very well and we're nearly half done with that early tedious hand weeding we usually find necessary to keep the competition down and allow the roots to grow.

   Give us some heat and the tomatoes will rule our lives. They're fat. They're tall. They're varied.   If late blight is held at bay, there'll be a million of 'em.

   Enjoy the last of the Pristine apples. We'll be on to red ones-- Williams Pride and Redfree, followed by Primas soon.    Lots more summer carrots and potatoes to dig.

     One sad seasonal note--there won't be any peaches this season from the McConnells. Their entire crop was frozen this last winter. I guess one could say with certainty, "Absence makes the heart grow fonder..." for that most succulent of stone fruits.

Longingly,                                                  Don, Becky, & the Farm Crew

For Extra Purchase: Organic Blueberries: $30/6 pints; $58/12 pint flat ("Blueberries" in the subject line) Greens: Collards, Kale, Tuscan Kale or mixed--$35/bu. box (as big as the plus size box) Rhubarb: 5#-$15  

Apple crisp: Slice or coarsely dice 2# apples (we never peel our apples), mix well with ¼ c. brown sugar, 1 tsp. cinnamon, and juice from small lemon. Place in buttered 9 x 13 pan. Mix in bowl, 1/2 c. wholewheat flour, 1 c. brown sugar, 1 c. rolled oats, optional 1/2 c. nuts and mix well. Cut 1/2 c. butter (one stick) into chunks and scatter over mixture then using your hands or pastry cutter squeeze and mix until everything is mixed well and crumbly. Drop topping onto apples and bake @ 375 deg. 35 min.

Fresh Salsa: 1# tomatoes, 1 bunch cilantro, about 1 green onion (or 1 medium sized dry onion or a small bunch of chives)--chop all these very finely. Add salt, 4T lemon or lime juice, dash of garlic powder and if you like, about 1 tsp. of finely chopped hot pepper—go easy because they are hotter fresh. Mix and enjoy with chips or other Mexican fare.

Eggplant is great to lighten up meals and center the more around veggies and less around meats. There are elaborate dishes, but there are many very simple and quick things too. Becky put together these simple sandwiches over the weekend:

Hot Eggplant Sandwiches: Slice eggplant about 3/8 in. thick and brush with oil. Coarsely slice up an onion separate sections and toss with 1 tbs. oil. Place both eggplant and onions on a cookie sheet and broil @ 350 deg. or grill. Turn both when beginning to show signs of toasting on one side; top eggplant with mozzerella or other cheese of your liking after 5 min. and continue to broil. When cheese is bubbly and melted, place eggplant on hearty toasted bread, top with the roasted onions, dress with salt and balsamic vinegar, add a slice of tomato and assemble the gourmet sandwich.

Eggplant rolls (Involtini): Remove stem and cut eggplant lengthwise into 1/4" thick slices. Sprinkle slices with salt, layer, and let sit one hour. Pat dry. Preheat oven 350 deg. Brush with eggplant olive oil, and arrange on oiled cookie sheet, bake until just starting to color (about 5 min.) Remove & cool. Mix 1 c. ricotta, 1/2 c. breadcrumbs, zest of a lemon, tsp. fresh thyme, tbs. lemon juice, dash salt. Put small amount of tomato sauce in bottom of 9x9 baking dish or other pan. Place dollop of mix on end of each eggplant slice, roll up, then place in pan seam side down. Place 1 tbs cream on each roll, bake @425 20min. or until sauce pretty much thickens away. Sprinkle with grated parmesan.

Tuscan Kale with Pasta: Remove kale stems from bunch of kale and break leaves into bite sized pieces. Saute 1 chopped onion (can be scallion as well) in tbs. coconut oil 5 min. Add 2 tbs. wine vinegar and simmer until it's evaporated. Set onions aside and saute kale for about 5 min. in 2 tbs. oil until wilted and tender. Add the onions, 2 tbs. butter, 1/2 c. grated pecorino cheese, and 1/2# bow tie pasta cooked al dente. Toss well and season with salt and hot pepper to taste.  

Note: As we pick the early apples (the best pie apples of the season) we gather ones which have dropped and will give free baskets of these to anyone who wants them. Send an e-mail with "pie apples" as the subject. We rotate the herbs around but if you want a specific herb for a special dish, just send an e-mail with "herbs" as the subject. Current selection is fresh dill, cilantro, thai basil, thyme, oregano, and basil (though basil not in large quantities right now).

ID: Herb this week is cilantro. Used much in Mexican and South Asian cooking. Dark blue green is Tuscan kale. Husked orb which looks like a green tomato--tomatillo. Cook with a little water and mash; mix with cilantr, onions to make a nice green salsa.

Posted 8/14/2014 12:50pm by Don Kretschmann.

July 29, 2014

Greetings from the Kretschmanns,

   We'd like to thank each and every one who took the time to send a letter to the New Sewickley Board of Supervisors and doubly thank all who came to the meeting Wednesday concerning the proposed compressor station. You showed us that we really do have an unbelievably supportive community--that the "community supported" part of CSA is alive and very well in the 'burgh. We read each and every cc'd letter as they came in. Your messages of support buoyed us throughout the ordeal of the hearing and now keeps us hopeful. Prayerful support was wonderful as well--even from all over the world. Out of the blue after midnight last week, there was a call from Salman, a young Ghanaian who I met there several years ago. He said his whole family spent one of the last days of Ramadan praying for us. He had no previous idea what we were going through. There was also supportive message from my niece who's teaching at a Buddhist convent in Himalayan India. As much of an ordeal as this has made our last three weeks, we feel strongly that something good will come of it.   We've been planning for a generational transfer at the farm so Becky and I can "take it easy" while still involved with the farm. Through this our daughters have rallied and pitched in to fight for what they believe in. We feel the future of the farm is theirs to shape more than ours at this point in time. We had gathered signatures of 70 residents requesting the supervisors continue the hearing to get some expert testimony other than the company on the potential danger to health or food. But they declined to do so. Hopefully your voices will add strength to our message and that of other neighbors and farmers to persuade.   The decision is in their hands to decide within 45 days. We're launching a Kretschmann Farm Friends facebook page so we can keep all those who want to keep abreast of what's happening currently and how your can help the cause.

   Meanwhile (back at the ranch...) Mother Nature is just enjoying making things grow. Rainfall has been just optimal--about an inch a week--though sometimes a little inconvenient for us humans to dance around. But we're at least in motion, ducking and running, and enjoying the rumbles in the distance as well as the patter in the wee hours. Tomato crop looks truly ominous. We've kept up with tying them and they are sizing well with the rain. We've also managed to sneak in an organic anti fungal spray in between the rains to keep the plants protected from devastating late blight. Becky has been bugging us to get the eggplant picked, but we just have too much stuff for the boxes right now. And then, at last count, seven bins full of red cabbage in the cooler. Did I mention the lettuce? Very rare to have it growing so nicely in mid-summer.

Sincerely,                                                  Don, Becky, & the Farm Crew

Note: As we pick the Pristine apples (the best pie apples of the season) we gather ones which have dropped and will give baskets of these to anyone who wants them. Send an e-mail with "pie apples" as the subject. For Extra PurchaseOrganic Blueberries: $30/6 pints; $58/12 pint flat ("Blueberries" in the subject line)

Greens: Collards, Kale, Tuscan Kale or mixed--$35/bu. box (as big as the plus size box)

We'd like our record of delivery to be 100%. If for any reason your box is missing, look for clues. Is there an empty box with your name? Sometimes a subscriber will send a neighbor to pick up and they take any box, regardless of name. In those cases, at the end of the day, there will be a box left over. You could leave your name with the stop host to call you if there's a box left. If you're at a location where it's OK for you to take the box home because we pick up the boxes the next day, we can bring you a box then if we've missed you. Let us know in time to put it on the truck. If you're at locations where you can't take the box home (marked with * on the list of pickup sites), you could leave your name with other site hosts in the nearby vicinity as well. Often they will have a leftover box which they would be glad to give you. If you pick up at the farm, just ask someone who might be working nearby, or stop at the house and we can quickly get a box of veggies together for you. Otherwise, e-mail us so we can make other arrangements or credit you.  

Green Beans--Nothing can really improve the exquisite taste of a fresh green bean newly snapped, boiled or steamed to just tender, and served hot. Salt, maybe...just maybe butter.   Apple pie--Quarter, remove the core and cut up about 2# apples into chunks the size of a sugar cube. (You needn't peel them.) Option: a handful of raisins. Mix with about 1/3 c. sugar or honey, 2 tbs flour, cinnamon to taste. Make dough and line piepan with crust. Fill with apples, pressing them to get in as many as possible. Cover with the topcrust and pinch the top and bottom together with your fingers. Cut off excess with knife. Poke a few holes in the top to let the stream out. Bake @ 375 deg until inserting a sharp knife reveals the apples are cooked.

Hey guys! This hot pie crust method is very easy using a blender to mix oil and the hot water. You can work with any oil, and use any flour. Anyone can make a good pie crust quickly and easily with this method-not at all a flaky mess all over the counter not sticking together when you roll it out. No rolling pin--not a problem to use a wine bottle!  

Hotwater Piecrust-- Sift 2 c. flour (100% wholewheat or any mix of flours), 1/2 tsp. baking powder, 1 tsp. salt. Blend 2/3 c. oil and 1/3 c. boiling water. Mix with sifted ingredients, mix, and roll out while warm. Makes 1 double crusted pie. (Roll out dough between two layers of heavy plastic for easy handling and less mess--just peel off the top layer of plastic, put the pie pan upside-down on top of the rolled dough, then, putting one hand below the plastic and one above the piepan flip the crust into the piepan and peel off the other layer of plastic.)  

Pesto: 2 c. fresh basil leaves, pinch salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, 1-2 tsp finely chopped garlic, 2-4 T pine nuts (or walnuts), 1/2 c. olive oil, 1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese. Combine in blender or food processor until texture is slightly grainy.   Mix well with your favorite pasta. Pesto can be frozen in ice cube trays then removed to a plastic bag for storage, or spread on a slightly oiled pie pan and cut into cubes when frozen. Frozen pesto makes for a gourmet quick-meal year round. It’s hard to have too much frozen pesto stashed away.

Fennel Quinoa Pilaf: Cook ½ c minced onion, 1/2 c. diced chard or beet stems or celery, ½ c diced carrots, and 1 c. diced fennel bulb, in 1 tbs butter in a 3-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until veggies are softened, 5 to 6 minutes. Add 1 c. quinoa and sauté over moderately high heat, stirring, until lightly toasted, 2 to 3 minutes. Add 1 ½ c. water and salt and pepper to taste and cook over moderately low heat, covered, until quinoa is tender and liquid is absorbed, 12 to 15 minutes. Couscous could also be used but add the water before the couscous and when it begins to boil, add the couscous, turn heat off, and cover for 5 min until the couscous is cooked.

Posted 8/14/2014 12:44pm by Don Kretschmann.

July 22, 2014

Greetings from the Kretschmanns,

This is the hardest newsletter I've ever written because I really would rather be talking about our farm and the food we grow. This Wednesday the New Sewickley Twp supervisors will consider permit for a gas compressor station to be located on the parcel of land adjoining our farm, the farm from which your family eats. If you are concerned, please make an effort to be there. Though the hearing is at the worst possible time for many of you--just early enough that you'd not have had dinner after work, it's even worse for us--the busiest time of the year with lots of folks on vacation who could help out.

We need your help now, as the 7/23 conditional use hearing might be the one where the supervisors grant permission for the plant. If getting food from a local farm with the highest integrity is important to you, plan to attend. If you're a parent, also appeal on behalf of your children who grow nourished by this wholesome food. If you're a doctor or health professional appeal on the basis of prudent concern for one's health. We are not asking for this kind of response based on the basis of NIMBY--not in my backyard. It's simply that an extra-ordinary number of Pittsburgh area consumers are consuming food from our farm in a raw and unprocessed form. That's a special case and you have a right to it's quality. The gas industry will deny there's any proven effects of this development, while at the same time frustrating attempts by independent scientists to study the issue. The gas companies will have their expert environmental witnesses. If you have any expertise, please let us know. We would like to respect the fact that this is a local board hearing and the supervisors and residents might resent a large group of non-residents dominating the meeting. Though you have a perfect right to make comments to the board, we think it appropriate that only a few subscribers to our foods speak for all the rest who might be in attendance. So we'll print ID tags, so everyone can see that you're one of those whose food comes from Kretschmann Farm. That said, we do need speakers who would be willing to offer a brief message on behalf of us and all the other subscribers. If you are willing to speak, please contact us so we can incorporate you into the meeting in this way.

1. Put your testimony in writing and bring a copy to give to the court reporter.

2. Summarize your testimony – speak no more than 3 to 5 minutes.

3. Explain who you are and why you are concerned about organic farming and the integrity of your food.

4. To the depth that you feel comfortable, speak about these key points:

 Pennsylvania cannot afford to lose any organic farmland because of gas industry intrusion. There's not enough to supply the growing market.

 Organic farms are vulnerable to loss of certification, soil destruction, and ecosystem damage. Where possible, infrastructure should avoid the vicinity of organic farms..

 Organic food is vital for many people’s health as well as to serve the market for customers in the region.

 As citizens of Pennsylvania, we all have "a right to clean air, pure water, and to the preservation of the natural, scenic, historic and aesthetic values of the environment." (Art.27Sec1PA Constitution) The state, and thus the township is the trustee of these common resources to preserve them for all of us. The production of healthy food with the benefit of clean water and air is one of the values of the environment and the most treasured of resources. Thanks to all who wrote to the supervisors on our behalf. The good of all will prevail if we are all sincerely engaged.

Encouraged by the continual beauty of our land and it's resilience, we are sincerely, Don, Becky, & the Farm Crew!

For Extra Purchase: Seven Grain bread @$4/loaf. Indicate the week or weeks. Organic Blueberries: $30/6 pints; $58/12 pint flat "Blueberries" in the subject line Greens: Collards, Kale, Tuscan Kale or mixed--$35/bu. box (as big as the plus size box) Veggie ID's: We've posted pictures on our website.

Posted 7/17/2014 10:42am by Don Kretschmann.

July 15, 2014

Greetings from the Kretschmanns,

   I wish I could talk about the what might shape up to be the best early potato crop in years, or how nice the tomatoes look, picture perfect fields of broccoli and cauliflower, or how excited we are to see the winter squash growing beautifully after being planted using our innovative new no-till system. But unfortunately we are totally preoccupied with stopping a Marcellus gas compressor station from being sited on a property adjoining our farm in the rear. We are shell shocked and beside ourselves after the surprise phone call last Wednesday from a neighbor about a meeting of the township board of supervisors at which they were to decide the issue. In eight hours we and several other neighbors came up with enough questions for the board to delay decision and continue the hearing on 7/23 at the township building. But we are told it will be an uphill battle. The small group of neighbors calling ourselves the Bulldogs for New Sewickley Health has alerted hundreds of residents, who also knew nothing about these plans. We don't like to bother our subscribers with issues outside our farmer to consumer relationship and deny many requests by outside groups to contact you. But this is about the future of your food supply--make no mistake. It's about the future of our farm. Thus, we respectfully ask, beg, that you write the board of supervisors voicing your concerns about the safety and integrity of your organic food supply. As citizens of Pennsylvania, we all have "a right to clean air, pure water, and to the preservation of the natural, scenic, historic and aesthetic values of the environment." (Art.27Sec1PA Constitution) The state, and thus the township is the trustee of these common resources to preserve them for all of us. Surely the production of healthy food with the benefit of clean water and air is one of the values of the environment and the most treasured of resources. We know you are busy-with-life. Please consider taking the time to send a letter to the supervisors insisting they fulfill their duty to protect the safety of your food supply. We are taking this very seriously and have engaged legal talent including the attorney who successfully confronted the free reign of the gas industry all the way to the PA Supreme Court.   We need your help now, as the 7/23 conditional use hearing might be the one where the supervisors grant permission for the plant. If getting food from a local farm with the highest integrity is important to you, plan to attend. If you're a parent, also appeal on behalf of your children who grow nourished by this wholesome food. If you're a doctor or health professional appeal on the basis of prudent concern for one's health.   Other professionals can lend a hand as appropriate. If you know anyone who could help out in the media, political, business, or legal arenas, please let us know. We certainly are not asking for this kind of response based on the basis of NIMBY--not in my backyard. It's simply that an extra-ordinary number of Pittsburgh area consumers are consuming food from our farm in a raw and unprocessed form. That's a special case and you have a right to it's quality.    You can send petitions to the Board of Supervisors c/o twp manager, New Sewickley Twp. Importantly, CC us in the e-mail, or simply send it to us and we'll print and forward it. Please be respectful. Don served for many years on this board with the current Chairman. Please put "NST petition" in the subject line so we can make sure it is introduced into the official record. We thank our many subscribers who have supported us for decades by buying our organic produce and thus making us the thriving organic farm which we are. This has allowed us to laugh at the lease agreements sought by the "land men".   We haven't and won't sign. We need your help at this critical time in this special way. Salient talking points are the potential danger to your organically raised food supply and the farm which produces it. We are confident the public good can prevail if we all step forward together. We will be putting together more information as we get a little ahead of this breaking wave.   

Busy as bees, we are sincerely,                                                 

Don, Becky, & the Farm Crew

Farm Tour/Open House/Dinner: Saturday July 19 10:30 AM to 3:00 PM, in collaboration with our neighbors, the Lewis's. If you wanted to see where your veggies come from, this is your chance. The Lewises grow grass fed beef cattle and pastured poultry. You can literally walk between the farms and hike the beautiful hills and fields. Bring a blanket and picnic. There will also be a hayride/tour. You can watch tomato tying or the meter run in reverse as our solar array provides the power for our farm. A gourmet dinner will be served in the Lewis's barn prepared by chef Jacob Main from our vegetables and meats from the Lewis's. Tickets are available at The Farmer's Table.

For Extra Purchase: Seven Grain bread @$4/loaf. Indicate the week or weeks. (Subject line "bread") Organic Blueberries: $30/6 pints; $58/12 pint flat ("Blueberries" in the subject line) Greens: Collards, Kale, Tuscan Kale or mixed--$35/bu. box (as big as the plus size box)

If we've forgotten your Box: If for any reason your box is missing, look for clues as to why. Is there an empty box with your name? Sometimes a subscriber will send a neighbor to pick up and they take any box, regardless of name. In those cases, at the end of the day, there will be a box left over. You could leave your name with the stop host to call you if there's a box left at the end of the day. If you're at a location where it's OK for you to take the box home because we pick up the boxes the next day, we can bring you a box then if we've missed you. But you must let us know in time to put it on the truck. If you're at locations where you can't take the box home (marked with * on the list of pickup sites), you could leave your name with other site hosts in the nearby vicinity as well. Often they will have a leftover box which they would be glad to give you. If you pick up at the farm, just ask someone who might be working nearby, or stop at the house and we can quickly get a box of veggies together for you. Otherwise, e-mail us so we can make other arrangements or credit you.

Cucumbers in Sour Cream: Select 2 tender young cucumbers; peel one but leave the other unpeeled. Slice very fine. sprinkle with salt and let stand just three minutes, thus removing any bitter taste of the skin. Mince 1/2 onion [scallions are fine] and add to cucumbers. Mix dressing of 1/2 cup sour cream, 1/2 cup vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, 2 tablespoons sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon mustard; pour over cucumbers. Serve at once for full flavor. 

Swiss Chard over Rice or Beans: Chard is easy to prepare and is delicious in combination with various beans. Saute about 2 packed qts. of chard, 1/2 c. onion and 4-6 cloves garlic in 2T olive oil until wilted (10 min.). Add salt, pepper, a little allspice, oregano, basil, and 1/4 c. sherry or white wine if desired. Sprinkle 1/4 to 1/2 c. grated parmesan cheese before serving over rice or beans.

Basque Potatoes: Chop finely 4 tbs. rosemary and thyme. Mix well with 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 c. olive oil.   Slice 1# red potatoes about 1/2" thick. Toss potatoes well in herb mixture and arrange on oiled cookie sheet. Bake @ 350 deg. about 20 min. We've got about the best pickle crop in years (they are less slender shaped than a cucumber). Nothing like these crisp fresh pickles on a hot summer day!

Fresh Dill Pickle Spears: Slice 1 or 2 cucumbers into spears and place in a glass quart jar with a few sprigs of fresh dill.   Then heat 1/8 c salt, 1/4 c vinegar, and 2 c water to boiling with a cut-up clove of garlic. Pour this over the cukes and when it cools, refrigerate. (To avoid breaking the jar with the boiling water, run hot tap water on the outside of the jar just before pouring the boiling liquid in.) The small leaves with reddish tinge in with the Italian basil are Thai basil and impart the unique flavor to that southeast Asian cusine.

Thai Basil Marinade: 1 1/2 TBS chopped ginger, 1/4 cup chopped thai basil leaves, 1/2 tsp sesame oil, 1/2 cup coconut vinegar, Thai or other chilis, chopped (less if you want it milder.) 

Veggie ID's: Chard, raddichio, thai basil, ...might be unfamiliar to some. We've posted pictures on our website. Click on the blue ID link.                                                                                                                              

Posted 7/17/2014 10:38am by Don Kretschmann.

July 8, 2014

Greetings from the Kretschmanns,

  We're still dodging raindrops, which is good for most of the crops, as long as the tomato leaves have time to dry off after a shower.   It's been a little challenging to get some of the field work done when there's been nearly half the days in any given week with rain predicted in the 50-60% chance range.  We jumped on the opportunity Saturday morning and got the largest broccoli field of the season planted--about 7000 plants.  Also got a good planting of fall green beans seeded.  And the pond is full to the brim.  Water banked against any dry weather later on.

   We're constantly faced with the question: should we pick a day earlier than we'd like, wash and pack and refrigerate, or wait and get caught unable to pick because it's raining. We've had a few complaints about the lettuce, and there's certainly been some quality loss due to this humidity and the hot weather.  We know too, some folks seem overwhelmed by the greens we've got right now.  We could just leave them in the field, or give them to you and you can decide what to do compost or eat.

     The red tubers are not ordinary spuds--they're "new" potatoes.  Keep them refrigerated.  The skins just flake right off, which means they are just like you've already peeled them.  They'll quickly turn dark if left at room temps.  They cook lots quicker than mature potatoes and are a real on-the-farm summer treat.  You'll never see these in a grocery store--too fragile with no shelf life.

     Be sure to use the beautiful beet tops.  They are a "green" in their own right, just as tasty and nutritious as Swiss chard. 

   Fennel should be here next week as well as the first blueberries.

     Sincerely,                                                  Don, Becky, & the Farm Crew

Farm Tour/Open House/Dinner: Saturday July 19 10:30 AM to 3:00 PM, in collaboration with our neighbors, the Lewis's. If you wanted to see where your veggies come from, this is your chance. The Lewises grow grass fed beef cattle and pastured poultry. You can literally walk between the farms and hike the hills and fields. Bring a blanket and picnic. There will also be a hayride/tour. You can watch tomato tying or the meter run in reverse as our solar array provides the power for our farm. A gourmet dinner will be served in the Lewis's barn prepared by chef Jacob Main from our vegetables and meats from the Lewis's. Tickets are available at The Farmer's Table.

For Extra Purchase: Seven Grain bread @$4/loaf. Indicate the week or weeks. Messages: If for any reason your box is missing, look for clues as to why. Is there an empty box with your name? Sometimes a subscriber will send a neighbor to pick up and they take any box, regardless of name. In those cases, at the end, there will be a box left over. You could leave your name with the stop host to call if there's a box left at the end of the day. Otherwise, e-mail us so we can make other arrangements or credit you.

Vacations: Send us a note with the subject line "vacation". Indicate the specific date and whether you want to donate the box or get a credit. If you're a light share, let us know if you want to skip three weeks in a row (the default), if you want an extra box the week before or after, or if you want to just skip two weeks, then swap cycles and continue every other week. Remember that if you get coffee, cheese or chickens, this won't work.

Collards: This is a real staple kind of greens because they are not as prone to overcooking as many other greens. You can make sauteed greens, or simply remove the rib, boil until tender, and add to beans or meats. They freeze well.

Becky's Oniony Potatoes: Brush potato slices with oil. Coat with dry onion soup mix. Bake on oiled cookie sheet until tender. Variation: blend fresh onions or green onion tops with a little oil and some liquid. Mix with potato slices until coated. Bake on cookie sheet. Cabbage is fun to pick in addition to being refreshingly tasty...

Asian Style Slaw: Mix together 1 tbs soy sauce, 1 tbs. cider vinegar, 2 tbs. sesame oil, 1 ½ tsp. minced ginger root, 1 tsp. honey, 1 c. creamy peanut butter. In 1 tsp vegetable oil sauté 2 large carrots sliced thinly on diagonal about 2 min. then add ½ cabbage sliced thinly. Saute about 4 min longer or until wilted but still tender-crisp. Remove from heat and toss with dressing. Serve warm.

Haluske: Saute a shredded cabbage and several sliced onions in oil or butter. Add a pound or so of your favorite pasta. Noodles or spaghetti work well. Salt to taste.

Old Fashioned Cucumber Onion Salad: Mix 1 c. water, 1 c. sugar, 1 c. vinegar until sugar dissolves. Add 3 large thinly sliced cucumbers, 1 large sweet onion thinly sliced, salt and papper to taste. Refrigerate about 3 hrs and serve. Save the juice and just add more cucs and onions

Zucchini Bread: Beat the 3 eggs until light and foamy.  Add 2 c.sugar, 1 c. oil, 2 c, grated zucchini and 3 tsp. vanilla and mix lightly but well.  Combine 3 c. all purpose flour, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp. soda, ¼ tsp. baking powder, and 3 tsp cinnamon and add to the egg-zucchini mixture.  Stir until well blended, add 1 c nuts, pour into two 9x5x3-inch oiled and floured loaf pans.  Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for about one hour.  Cool ten minutes and remove from pans.  It keeps well and freezes well.

Beets: Cut off the tops about 1/2" from the root. Boil unpealed until tender, testing with a fork (Don't overcook or they will taste like the yucky canned ones). Run under cold water til they can be handled and slip the skins off. They can then be used in any beet dish. The first ones we like to slice and add to salads to substitute for tomatoes in color.

Veggie ID's: Chard, raddichio, collards...might be unfamiliar to some. We've posted pictures on our website. Click on the blue ID link.