Chocolate Raspberry Tart

Chocolate Raspberry Tart

Here is a recipe that is sure to impress at this year’s Fourth of July parties and other summer gatherings. With ingredients such as cream cheese, Nutella, and raspberries, what’s not to love? We found this tasty dessert in tasteofhome.com and it is as easy to make as it is to eat! If you are looking for some wonderful, fresh raspberries, look no further than the farm stand at Colchester Neighborhood Farm in Plympton, which is selling the berries from Keirstead Farm in Plympton.

Ingredients

  • 5 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

 

  • FILLING:
  • 2 cups fresh raspberries
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup Nutella

Directions

  • Process cream cheese and butter in a food processor until blended. Add flour; process just until a dough forms. Shape into a disk; wrap in plastic. Refrigerate 1 hour or overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 350°. In a small bowl, toss raspberries, sugar and cornstarch with a fork, mashing some of the berries slightly.
  • On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a 14×8-in. rectangle. Transfer to a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Spread with Nutella to within 1 in. of edges. Top with raspberry mixture. Fold pastry edge toward center of tart, pleating and pinching as needed.
  • Bake until crust is golden brown, 45-50 minutes. Transfer tart to a wire rack to cool.

 

Rainbow Chard Frittata

Rainbow Chard Frittata

It doesn’t get easier or healthier than this!

If you are looking for a quick and easy summer dish that uses fresh ingredients like rainbow chard – now being harvested at Colchester Neighborhood Farm and fresh eggs – also available at the farm stand–look no further than this wonderful dinner. We found this recipe at lettyskitchen.com.  Oh so good and healthy!

Ingredients
  • 1 bunch rainbow chard
  • Extra virgin olive oil, as needed, for the greens, eggs, and skillet
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • Sea salt, as needed
  • 6 eggs
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • 3 tablespoons Pecorino Romano or other aged cheese
Instructions
  1. Remove the chard stalks from the leaves and cut into 1/4-inch pieces. Coarsely chop the leaves.

  2. Add the onion and chard stalks and sauté about 5 minutes, until the onion is translucent. Add the garlic and cook another 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in the leaves, season with salt, and cook until the leaves are wilted and tender about 5 more minutes. Set aside.

  3. Crack the eggs in to a bowl. Add 1/8 teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoons olive oil and a sprinkling of both black and cayenne pepper. Beat lightly. Stir the chard mixture into the eggs.

  4. Pre-heat a 10- or 12-inch skillet over medium low heat. (see note) Also pre-heat the oven broiler.

    Pour 2 tablespoons of olive oil into the skillet. After a few seconds, pour in the egg and chard mixture. As the eggs set on the bottom, gently lift the edges to allow the uncooked egg to flow underneath. Continue to cook until mostly set, but a little runny on top.

    Sprinkle the cheese, if using, over the eggs. Place under the broiler 3 to 4 minutes, until the cheese browns and the eggs are set.

  5. Serve in wedges, with a crisp green salad.

Bet you didn’t know these fun facts about Broccoli

Bet you didn’t know these fun facts about Broccoli

Colchester Neighborhood Farm has selected  broccoli as its star organic vegetable of the week. While former President George H.W. Bush made it clear that this vegetable was not one of his favorites….for many people it is a staple of the dinner table. And for good reason.  After all, this cousin to kale and brussel sprouts is packed with vitamins and it’s a great item to include on your grocery list if you are trying to drop a few pounds. So without any further ado, I give you some fascinating and fun facts about broccoli.

  • Broccoli hails from the town Calabria in Italy.

 

  • Its name comes from the Italian word, braccio, which means arm.

 

  • If you prefer your broccoli shaken and not stirred, it may be because of the key role it played in the James Bond films…well, sort of. Italian-American Albert R. Broccoli is credited with bringing Ian Fleming’s suave and famous secret agent James Bond to the big screen. Broccoli produced all of the Bond films made during his life.

 

  • Thomas Jefferson imported broccoli seeds from Italy and planted the vegetable at Monticello.

 

  • The average American eats over 4 pounds of the cruciferous vegetable per year. California produces 90 percent of the nation’s broccoli.China, however, is the leading producer of the vegetable, over 8 million tons per year.

 

  • Broccoli is a member of the cabbage family.

 

  • According to the website mindbodygreen.com, broccoli is a powerhouse of vitamins, packed with Vitamins C and A. One cup of the chopped green vegetable has as much Vitamin C as an orange. The Vitamin A in the vegetable helps fight cancer and keeps eyes healthy.

 

  • Filled with fiber which aids in digestion and helps to keep you feeling full, at just 31 calories in a cup of chopped broccoli, it is at the top of the list of foods to eat if you are dieting.

 

  • According to the website, servingjoy.com, “the head of broccoli is made up of tiny flower buds. If you do not harvest broccoli on time, the head will be full of yellow flowers. Even when harvested, broccoli needs to be kept in a cool temperature to prevent the buds from flowering, which will make the vegetable taste bitter.”

 

  • The best way to store broccoli is unwashed, in a ventilated plastic bag inside the refrigerator. It should be eaten within five days.

 

  • Broccoli can be steamed, boiled, or roasted but to get the maximum nutrition value, the best way to enjoy it is raw.

 

  • This versatile veggie can be prepared in soups, salads or even a pesto.

 

If you’re curious as to how this veggie can be worked into a pesto, check out Colchester Neighbhorhood Farm’s Facebook page for a broccoli pesto recipe that will add some flavor to your pasta without adding to your waistline.

Fresh from the farm is an experience

Fresh from the farm is an experience

Buying fresh fruits and vegetables from a local farm stand not only demonstrates healthy eating habits to children, it can teach them the value of supporting local agriculture. If we’re lucky, the trip to the farm can result in a few cherished memories. There is no denying that tomatoes or lettuce picked the same day  taste better than the produce purchased from the grocery store. If you’ve ever had the pleasure of harvesting food from a backyard garden rather than a refrigerator, you will agree that the “chore” itself could be as fun as the food was tasty. I remember picking vegetables with my grandfather; he taught me how to choose the ripest and sweetest tomatoes and how to determine when peppers were ready to be picked. Even sweeter than those tomatoes are the memories of the experience that I still carry with me today.

 

By today’s standards, however, we are not always as diligent about taking time to smell the roses…or as the case may be, the basil. In our rush to complete all of our errands, making a special trip to a local farm, exclusively for the purpose of buying cucumbers and tomatoes, can seem like an added chore and one that could easily be eliminated, if we just purchased our produce at the local grocery store, along with all of the other items on our list. But sometimes, these everyday chores are the same ones that create an experience and in the process, a lasting memory, for children and parents, alike. If we eliminate these so-called chores, we may be denying ourselves and our children the pleasure of true, quality time spent together.

 

When you buy your fruits and vegetables from Colchester Neighborhood Farm, consider blocking out an extra 15 minutes or 30 minutes for the “chore” because it could easily turn into a fun and wonderful experience. Colchester Neighborhood Farm is a social enterprise in every sense of the word. Employing adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities who are more than happy to wait on their customers at the farm stand, they are also eager to show off their farm, which includes chickens, a friendly donkey named Dapple, and some goats and their babies…yes the kids love the kids! A visit to Colchester Neighborhood Farm is more than just buying fresh fruits and vegetables, it is an opportunity for our children to learn about agriculture, to see how their food is grown and where it comes from. And going home with a few good memories along with some fresh tomatoes, organically grown cucumbers, and a bouquet of fresh flowers isn’t bad either.

Getting your fair share of the pie…and the vegetables

Getting your fair share of the pie…and the vegetables

Today’s consumers have never been more savvy or health conscious when it comes to buying food for their families. They are opting for healthier choices and often times that means buying food that is locally grown, without the aid of chemicals and pesticides. Local farmers recognize this heightened demand for fresh fruits and vegetables that have been organically grown and are working harder than ever to make sure that their farm stands are filled with enough produce to satisfy all of their customers.

 

It can be terribly disappointing to get to the farm stand only to find out that the tomatoes are sold out or the lettuce has all been eaten up. This is the plight of the local farmer….knowing how much produce to grow to meet the demand of his customers. Grow too much and the farm suffers a loss in terms of expenses; grow too little and the customer is disappointed. In an effort to take the guess work out of the process and to ensure that every customer gets their fair share of freshly harvested fruits and vegetables, Community Supported Agriculture, also known as CSA shares, have become quite the trend and consumers and farmers alike are, pardon the pun, eating it up.

 

The way the CSA shares work is simple. Customers pay the farmer upfront for a season’s worth of fruits and vegetables. This gives the farmer a firm grasp on the number of people who will be purchasing from him during the season so he knows how much to plant to ensure that all of his “regular” customers get the vegetables they want. Each week, he sets aside the fruits and vegetables that have been “pre-ordered” by these shareholders. It is the ultimate customer service model and a win-win situation for both the farmer and the customer.

 

Here at Colchester Neighborhood Farm, we are selling CSA shares for our vegetables and fruits as well as the flowers we grow, organic eggs, and our winter vegetable crops…buying fresh and local doesn’t end when the last tomato has been picked.

 

What really sets Colchester Neighborhood Farm apart from other local farms is the people. Yes, it really is the people who are tilling the soil, picking the vegetables, building trellises, tending to the chickens, and all of the other work that happens on the farm. Managed and operated by New England Village, Inc., a nonprofit organization that assists people with developmental and intellectual disabilities find employment, the men and women working on our farm have found their purpose here and are happy to lend their talents and skills to this business. And they are happy to deliver the highest level of customer service to the people who visit our farm stand.

 

Buying fresh fruits and vegetables from Colchester Neighborhood Farm not only provides you with food that tastes good, it gives you a good feeling knowing you are supporting people who truly love their job and the opportunity to serve you.

6 Farmers’ Market Scams

Interesting article from organicgardening.com about myths of Farmers’ Markets.

Here are the six myths:

  1. Myth: All farmers’ markets sell local food
  2. Myth: Local = organic
  3. Myth: “No spray” is the same as organic
  4. Myth: Farmers aren’t certified organic because it’s “too expensive”
  5. Myth: Food from the farmers’ market is so clean, you can eat it right there
  6. Myth: Bugs on your food are bad

People tend to equate farmers’ markets and “local” food with clean, wholesome food.  That’s true in many cases—but not all of them.  Farmers’ markets have become so popular that they’re being co-opted by wholesalers, retailers, and farmers who may be local but not so committed to a sustainable food system.  If you’re looking for farmers’ markets that sell the kind of healthy, down-on-the-farm food most of us equate with farming, arm yourself with this info to ward off farmers’ market fraud.

Read the entire article HERE and be sure to click through each “myth”.

Longtime CNF CSA member, James shares how his family uses their share…

Although we are only two people most of the time now, we made pretty good use of all three seasons last year, and figured out how to freeze certain things and use others that we haven’t in the past.  If you have time on your hands, you might scan or search our food blog for mention of some items as they come in, though I have to admit the postings about Jerusalem artichokes are not the most uplifting.  The ratatouille posts, however, can encourage even the most reluctant eggplant recipient, since I was that person a year ago!

The blog is at http://nuevareceta.blogspot.com/ and that particular post is at http://nuevareceta.blogspot.com/2011/09/ratatatatouille.html.

Megan’s Trip to the Farm

It’s always exciting to bring someone new to the farm so they can experience first hand what it takes to care for the animals and get a better idea of the crops and the fields where they grow.  Somehow though it’s even more refreshing to bring along someone that knows some of the stories, is familiar with a few of the animals by name, and can appreciate the hard work that goes into what makes a farm run successfully.

Last weekend CNF had a visitor from the Granite State.  Megan, currently living in New Hampshire, was visiting the home of volunteer Bruce and her dad, Bob.  Bruce and Bob were eager to take Megan to the farm as it was her first visit to CNF.  Megan was also thrilled to have the opportunity to experiment with her new Canon SLR camera.  Here’s a slideshow sampling of the over 200 photos she took during the Saturday PM feeding. Since it was a brisk day and cold time of year for a visit, Megan expressed that she can’t wait to come back in the spring and summer to see the crop fields planted and the lambs grown!  Enjoy!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

South Shore Living: Shop Local… Eat Fresh

Click each photo to enlarge and then click again for full size reading

Colchester Neighborhood Farm Egg Share

Want to be assured of being able to purchase Farm Fresh Eggs each week?

Purchase a CNF Egg Share!  Pre-pay for your eggs  then pick them up each week.  

Purchasing eggs currently costs $3.50 per dozen.  You could save .25 per dozen and would be assured of getting the freshest eggs because we  would set them aside for you each week.

Our current EGG SHARE  is  for the 8 weeks of January and February 0f 2010.  

In the EGG SHARE  Program, each dozen costs $3.25

, so the cost of the 8 week egg share is $26.00 for the Jan/ Feb Egg Share  Season.

Please contact us at colchesterfarm@mac.com or call Connie at 781-588-4255 to participate.

A note on the eve of our first pick-up of ’09

Dear Farm Boxers,

“The taste of summer arrives in a bite. Someone must be doing somethin’ right”.

These were Ron’s words after tasting the first strawberry of the season.

We are just fine here at Colchester Neighborhood Farm.  Ron, Nicholas and I have been at the farm each day preparing for our first CSA pick up. Our organic farm intern, Paul Knox, has been working with us 3 days each week. We have a wonderful bunch of volunteers, who we are so grateful for… some of them come faithfully each week and others have come sporadically but each one contributes their valuable time and and helps us to accomplish our goals of planting, weeding and harvesting. THANK YOU VOLUNTEERS!!!

This time of year, I have dreams of the nightmarish torrential rain in 2006 which flooded one field and wiped out an entire planting of tomatoes, or thoughts of a hail storm which could wipe out tender leafy greens or the fear of an unexpected scorcher which could cook plants right in the ground, or an unexpected cold snap which could… gotta stop … am scaring myself!   You get the picture; bunnies, cabbage moths, extreme weather, …potential hazards to crops are everywhere.

But, so far all looks fine and for your first farm box pick up, you can expect rhubarb and head lettuce from Frank Albani, at Soule Farm Homestead, in Middleboro.   Frank is a long time organic farmer, owner of Golden Rule Farm in Middleboro and 2009 growing partner for the CNF. He will be providing various specialty crops like tomatoes, peppers and eggplants through out the season.  We will have the following including but not limited to: onion tops, greens such as kale, collard, Swiss chard, arugula, some Asian greens, some peas and strawberries.

From our retail days, you will notice lots of “ stuff” at the barn. There are old time farm tools and implements, pots for plants, pottery decorations, new and used handmade and manufactured baskets, old wooden boxes, old bottles, hand painted slates, etc… all of these items are for sale.  If you see something that you’d like and do not see a price on it; just make an offer.  You will also see items on sale for $1.00. There are 2 and 3 foot hardwood stakes, 4 foot bamboo stakes, used picture frames, brackets of several types, hose couplings, several sizes of saucers to be placed under your potted plants,… and more!

We have a few misnomers at Colchester Neighborhood Farm.   The actual term Farm Box:  Originally we commissioned a local carpenter to craft our wooden farm box. This is no longer financially possible so the term “farm box” really now refers to the contents of the box. Please bring your own containers to bring your produce home in. Many people rinse out the plastic boxes that lettuce and salad mixes come in from the store and re-fill them with fresh organic green leaves for their farm box. Others bring the plastic, paper or canvass or recycled grocery bags and refill them. Some folks bring boxes or baskets, whatever works best for you is what we hope you will bring.

Goat Salad : When we had goats, we encouraged folks to bring their table scraps (old but not mushy fruits and vegetables) to be hand fed to the goats. We referred to this as “goat salad”. We are not keeping goats at the moment, but, we still encourage people to bring “ goat salad” to the chickens. The chickens are also fond of stale bread and crackers. Dapple is especially fond of carrots and apples and the pigs will eat just about anything. We prefer that the animals receive fruits and vegetables only 2 or 3 days old, but if you have produce that is less fresh, it can go into our compost.  Please check with us if you have anything that you question.

When you come for your farm box, please notice the 2 large chalk boards in the barn. One has the list of people that we expect to pick up their farm box that day. If your name is not there or if the spelling is incorrect, please take no offense, but please do let me know.  So that we can keep track, we would appreciate it if you would cross your name off the list after you gather your items. The other board has the offerings of the day. We look forward to a bountiful season where the farm box contents will be increasing each week. … remember, the concept of the CSA is that you receive a “share” of the harvest. If we harvest 15 pounds of peas and there are 30 people expected that day, each shareholder receives a half pound. So, we harvest first thing in the morning and then divide it up according to how many of each size share we are expecting.

The Maribetts