Thursday, September 28, 2017

Notes from Your Farm: Pumpkins

Hello from the Farm,   

Hours for Pick Up:
Please make sure you are picking up your veggies in a timely manner.  We close promptly at our closing times.  Thank you.
Thursday - 3:00pm till 7:00pm
Friday - 11:00am till 7:00pm
Saturday - 9:00am till 1:00pm 

A BIG thank you to everyone that came out to Picnic in the Fields and the Golf Tournament this past weekend.  The money raised will help the non-profit Homefields with building and machinery expenses on the farm.  Thanks for all of your support!

Pumpkins are back in town!
We added a touch of Fall to the distribution area this week.  Feel free to take pictures at the straw bales and with the pumpkins. 

Road Construction
If you take Donnerville Road to Letort Road coming from Washington Borough area you will eventually get to a bridge that is closed down because of construction.  Please take 999 (Blue Rock Road) till you get to the light at North Duke Street, which you will take a right onto, and then take a right at the stop sign onto Letort Road, the farm will be on the left hand side.   

PYO - Red Yard Long Beans - Located in the Fields
There is no limit on the Red Yard Long Beans, take as many as you want.  Many beans are out in the field ready for picking!  The small skinnier ones are good raw or cooked and the fatter longer ones are best cooked. 
Red Noodle Beans with Slivered Garlic
Ingredients: 1 Tbsp olive oil/hot pepper oil combination, 1-1/2 lbs red noodle beans, cut into 3″ pieces, 6 cloves garlic, slivered, 1 tsp sugar, 1/3 cup water, 1 tbsp natural rice vinegar, 1/2 tsp kosher salt, 1/2 tsp coarse black pepper 
Directions: In a large skillet, heat oil. Add red noodle beans and garlic; stir fry for about 5 minutes. Add sugar, stir until coated. Pour water into skillet; cover and simmer for 5 minutes. Toss in vinegar, salt, and pepper; stir. Enjoy! Yield: 6-8 servings

Red Yard Long Beans are located where it says "Beans" on the map below.  There are three rows of stakes where they are located. 

PYO - Sunflowers - Located in the Fields

Your last chance for picking sunflowers!  This is a second planting of sunflowers placed a short distance from the PYO Field.  It is nicely mowed around these sunflowers and don't be afraid to step in the field because we are done harvesting from that area.  See location of sunflowers on the map below.    

 Sunflower & Red Yard Long Bean Map

Pets Not Allowed at Farm
Please do not bring your pets to the farm unless it is a service animal.  We are having incidents that people are not picking up their pets waste and leaving it in the fields.  This becomes a food safety issue when it is left behind.  Please leave your pets at home or in the vehicle while you are picking up your veggies.  I understand the farm would be a good location to let your pet walk around but we think of safety first and can not have this happening around our produce.  Thank you for understanding.
Meat Share Information
The first month of the meat share started this week, for all the shareholders who signed up.  This month the owners Tyler and Joella will be in contact with meat share shareholders on how they will drop off your share this month.  Next month your meat share will be at Goodwill at Homefields Farm for pick up.  
If you are wanting to sign up for the meat share please get in contact with Tyler and Joella.  They are creating a sustainable approach to for us to take advantage of with meat purchasing.  Local, sustainable, and organic. 
"Hello Shareholders, 
We're excited to offer a Meat CSA share, with pickup at Homefields! Mirror Image Farms raises livestock organically on pasture, and is located in Bainbridge, PA. Our Meat CSA share includes pastured chicken, pastured pork, and grass-fed beef. A share will include a variety of cuts over the 3 month span including whole chicken, boneless skinless breasts, leg and thighs, bacon, sausage, pork chops, ham steaks and roasts, ground pork, ground beef, beef cubes, ribs, steaks, and beef roasts. Each month's box will include approximately a 1/3 of each type of meat. 
It's a monthly share, available for pickup at Homefields the third week of the month. The meat CSA will run for 3 months, from September through November. A full share is 20lbs of meat/month for $450 and a half share is 10lbs of meat/month for $270. 
Questions, or wanting to sign up for the Meat CSA share, email us at with your name, phone number, and whole or half share, and send a check for the appropriate amount ($450 for whole share; $270 for half share) made out to Tyler Neff and mail to 117 Essex Street, Marietta, PA 17547. 
You can find more about our farm at 
Thank you,
Tyler and Joella Neff, Mirror Image Farms"

PYO Field - Herb of the Week  
Thyme -
History - Greeks given as gift to warriors for bravery, Romas purified rooms by burning it as an incense, Middle Ages put in pillow to ward of nightmares and sleeping problems.    
Harvesting - cut small portions of plant 
Storage: put in damp cloth placed in refrigerator 
Medicinal uses by extracting oil
Cooking: used in Italian cooking, soups, and stews 
You can also find Orange Thyme located in the Herb Beds

Pumpkin Thyme Soup
Ingredients: 3 cups of pumpkin puree (found in share), 1/2 onion diced (found in share), 2 cloves of garlic diced (found in share), 2 cups of chicken stock, 1 cup of water, 1/2 cup of heavy cream, 6 slices of bacon (optional), 3tsp. of sea salt, 1/4tsp. of pepper, 1/2tsp. of thyme (found in PYO field)
Directions: cook bacon util crispy. Add onion and garlic to hot bacon grease in pan, cook until onions are translucent. To pan add chicken stock, pumpkin, water, and sesaonings. Whisk to combine. Let soup come to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 10minutes. 

Add Abendessen's Italian Herb & Cheese bread to dip into soup!

Recipe from "Back to our Roots" at: 

Additional Note: Many vegetables / herbs / flowers are ready for harvest in the PYO Field even though they do not have a white wooden sign in front of them.  Please harvest whatever you think is ready in the PYO Field even if it does not have a white wooden sign in front of it.

Abendessen Bread
Italian Herb & Cheese Bread - Great for sandwiches or pasta and soup! - $5 a loaf

Harvest List 
Pumpkins - storage: last awhile if put in a cool dark space but will do fine on a porch for a few weeks.
Cooking: all pumpkins are edible but the Jack-O-Lantern and larger varieties can be stringy.  The smaller and squat pumpkins are best for cooking.  If you use the pumpkin as a Jack-O-Lantern and set it outside do not use for cooking.  The seeds are amazing to cook with so don't wast the seeds!
How to Cook a Pumpkin
Directions: Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Cut pumpkin into small manageable pieces and cut off pith and seeds. Place cut pumpkin skin side up in a large roasting pan. Add 1/4 inch of water and bake uncovered for 1 hour or until tender. Remove from oven and allow pumpkin to cool. When cooled, cut away skin and mash or puree. Use in any recipe that calls for canned pureed pumpkin.

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Ingredients: 1 1/2 cups raw whole pumpkin seeds, 2 teaspoons butter, melted, 1 pinch salt
***Can use any seasoning on Pumpkin Seeds. I use a Garlic Salt seasoning on mine***
Directions: Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Toss seeds in a bowl with the melted butter and salt. Spread the seeds in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for about 45 minutes or until golden brown; stir occasionally.

Potatoes - storage: keep potatoes in refrigerator or in a cool dark area of your home.  Potatoes have always lasted a very long time for me in my refrigerator. 
Potato and Fresh Herb Soup
Ingredients: 4Tbsp. butter, 1 cup diced onions, 3 cups potatoes peeled and diced, 3 cloves garlic chopped, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. pepper, 3 tsp. total fresh parsley, thyme, lemon balm, and chives (use whatever herbs you want found in the PYO Field), 5 cups vegetable stock, milk.
Directions: melt butter in heavy saucepan until it foams. add potatoes and onions, stir well to coat. sprinkle with salt and pepper. cover on low hear for 10min. add fresh herbs, garlic, and stock and cook until vegetables are soft. puree soup in blender or processor. thin to desired consistency with milk. serve sprinkled with freshly chopped herbs.

Pawpaws - storage: should be put in refrigerator to last longer.  If really soft it should be eaten in 2-3 days.  If hard wait until it is soft and has dark brown colors on the skin.
How to eat: cut the pawpaw in half, scoop in the inside fruit out with spoon, do not eat skin or seeds.  Can be eaten raw.  Has a mango/banana flavor.  Throw your seeds outside once you are done because pawpaws are native to PA.
Easy No-Bake Pawpaw Pudding
Ingredients: 2-6 medium to large pawpaws (depends on how you like the flavor) scooped seeded and lightly smashed, 1 (5 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix, 2 cups cold milk, 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk, 1 tablespoon vanilla extract, 1 (8 ounce) block of cream cheese softened, 1 (16 ounce) container frozen whipped topping thawed, 1 (16 ounce) package vanilla wafers
Directions: In a large mixing bowl, beat pudding mix and milk two minutes. Blend in condensed milk and cream cheese until smooth. Stir in vanilla and fold in 2/3s of the whipped topping, reserving the final 1/3.Layer the bottom of a 13x9 dish with vanilla wafers. Cover the wafers with a thin layer of the pudding mix. Dollop on the pawpaw by the spoonful evenly over the pudding mixture. Add another layer of vanilla wafers and repeat with remaining pudding and pawpaw. Top with the remaining whipped topping and refrigerate for at least two hours. 

Asian Pears - storage: keep in refrigerator drawer set to fruit selection.  Can last many weeks.
Asian Pear Crisp with Ice Cream
Ingredients: 4 medium Asian pears (or 5 small), seeds removed & cut in small slices, 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, 2 tablespoons light brown sugar, 1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, 1 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
Topping: 1 1/2 cups old fashion whole grain oats, 2/3 cup all-purpose flour, 1/3 cup light brown sugar, 1/4 teaspoon baking powder, 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut in small pieces, 2 1/2 tablespoons maple syrup
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees with the rack positioned in the middle.
2. In a 8x13 casserole dish, add the sliced pears, lemon juice, sugar, flour and cinnamon. Mix until ingredients are combined.
3. In a large bowl, add all the topping ingredients together and mix until ingredients are combined and form small lumps.
4. Pour the topping mixture over the pears and spread the mixture evenly.
5. Place the casserole in the center of the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
6. Serve warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Zucchini - storage: store in a plastic bag in the crisper of your refrigerator and use within one week. For longer storage, cooked summer squashed can be frozen and added to soups in the winter months.
Zucchini Saute Recipe
Ingredients: 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic (found in share), 3 large zucchini squash, thinly sliced (found in share), 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Directions: Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. When hot, add the garlic and saute for 2 minutes, or until fragrant; don't let it brown. Add the squash, salt and pepper and cook until the squash is tender but still slightly crisp, about 5 minutes. Transfer the squash to a serving dish and sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese.

Eggplant - storage: best eaten fresh. Store in vegetable crisper for up to one week. For longer storage, make eggplant dishes like baba ghanouj and freeze in an airtight container. 
 Roasted Eggplant
Ingredients: 1 pound eggplant, peeled and cut into 2-inch cubes, 1½ teaspoons kosher salt, 2 tablespoons olive oil, ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  1. Arrange eggplant cubes in a single layer on a paper towel lined baking sheet. Sprinkle the eggplant cubes with ½ teaspoon of the kosher salt and allow to rest for about 15 - 20 minutes until moisture beads on the eggplant. Pat dry with paper towels. Remove the paper towel from underneath the eggplant and preheat the oven to 425ºF.
  2. Drizzle the olive oil over the eggplant and sprinkle with the remaining salt and pepper. Toss to make sure that the eggplant is coated completely.
  3. Roast the eggplant until just fork tender, about 25 minutes
Freezer Instructions: Allow roasted eggplant to cool completely. Use a spatula and toss the eggplant on the pan so that it doesn't stick. Place the baking sheet into the freezer for 15 minutes to freeze the eggplant cubes. 
Remove the baking sheet from the freezer and place the eggplant cubes into freezer-safe containers and freeze for up to 3 months.
To use, remove from the freezer and allow to thaw overnight. Then, reheat and serve or use in other dishes.
 Recipe from "add a pinch" blog at:
Tomatoes - storage: do not refrigerate. Maintain their best flavor if kept at room temperature. If your tomato is not quite ripe, let it sit on the counter for a day or two. Can be frozen whole. Core them, freeze on a cookie sheet, and once tomatoes are frozen solid place in zip lock bags and freeze until ready to use.

Peppers - storage: refrigerate in vegetable crisper for 1 to 2 weeks. To freeze, remove seeds and stem and prepare as you like - slice or diced. Place in zip lock bags in the freezer. They will soften once you remove from the freezer, but will be great to add to soups and casseroles. 
Roasted Peppers with Garlic and Herbs
Ingredients: 4 bell peppers (red, yellow, or orange), halved and seeded, 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced (found in share), 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano (herbs found in PYO Field), Coarse salt and ground pepper, Fresh basil leaves, torn (found in PYO Field)
Directions: Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place peppers, cut side up, on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Divide garlic among peppers. Sprinkle with oregano and season with salt and pepper. Roast until flesh is tender and skin is blistered in spots, 35 minutes. Transfer peppers to a platter and top with a small handful torn basil leaves.

Garlic - storage: place in mesh bag, bowl or paper bag. Do not place in plastic bag, will encourage rot.

Onions - storage: keep in cool, dark, dry location. Don not place in plastic bag, will encourage rot.  

- Most of the storage ideas were found in our Goodwill at Homefields Farm "A Mostly Vegetarian Cookbook".  Which can be found at our sign in desk at the distribution center 

Enjoy the Fall Weather,

Your Farmers

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