Growing the good stuff in Athens, GA since 2006

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

CSA Pickups -- Week 10 -- Beans

Roots Farm CSA Week 10: July 5 & July 8

This Week:
-Beans!: Rattlesnake Pole Beans, Blue Coco, Gold of Bacau
-Carrots: Bolero
-Kale: Winterbor, Red Russian, White Russian, Rainbow Lacinato
-Sweet Onions (“Vidalia-type Yellow Granex)
-Garlic: California Early
-Cucumbers: Lemon
-Okra!: Burgundy & Clemson Spineless
-Melons: Diplomat
-Tomatoes!: SunGold Cherry, Juliet Roma, various hybrids

On the Farm . . .
We’ve been enjoying the afternoon thunderstorms. It’s July, and despite our best efforts, tomatoes are slow to appear. Our apologies. In the meantime, enjoy the abundance of BEANS coming on now, as well as the continued flood of cucumbers. And we’ve got ARUGULA appearing this week, not to mention the neverending kale. A lot is going on in the month of JULY here on the farm and in Athens. Read on for details. . .

July Weekend Workday, THIS SATURDAY, July 9th
That’s right, folks, our July weekend workday is coming up this weekend! Saturday, from 8-11am, we’ll be out on the farm. That’s earlier than usual, so set your alarm early to beat the heat. We’ll be weeding, trellising, preparing beds, seeding, and more! And then we’ll be feasting on a farm-fresh BRUNCH!! See you here!

Taste Your Place--Local Food Extravaganza of Athens--July 9th-21st
July 9th: Taste Your Place Kick-off at the Athens Farmers Market, 10am-12pm with cooking demonstration and kid’s activity all with a blueberry theme! FREE.
July 9th: Grand Opening of Heirloom Café, Benefit for PLACE. $10/person, 6pm-8:30pm, cash bar.
July 10th: Grower Cooperative Interest Meeting, part of AFANS. 2pm-4pm at the UGA Livestock Instructional Arena (2600 S Milledge, Athens, GA 30606). Hosted by PLACE.
July 13th: Stone Soup Supper and Community Potluck. 7:30pm at Roots Farm (46 Beaver Trail, Winterville, GA 30683). Hosted by PLACE. Free and open to the public.
July 16th: Taste Your Pie Contest at the Athens Farmers Market, 10am. $5 to enter a pie with recipe. $5 to taste all the pies. Prizes for best sweet pie and best savory pie. Hosted by PLACE.
July 17th: Driving Tour of 3 Local Farms. 1pm-8pm. $30/person. Space limited. Contact Amanda Tedrow ( to reserve a seat. Hosted by PLACE.
July 19th: Screening of “Farmageddon” at Cine, 7pm, $10/person. Space limited. Contact Cine to purchase tickets in advance. Benefits Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund and Wholesome Wave Georgia. Hosted by Athens Locally Grown.
July 21st: Taste Your Tapas and Silent Auction at Cine, 7pm-8:30pm. Taste local food offering from participating Taste Your Place restaurants, $20/person. Space limited. Contact Cine for advanced tickets.
July 21st: 4th Annual Athens Local Food Awards at Cine, 8pm. PLACE presents awards for excellence on the farm, for educators, for businesses, and for advocates.

14 Taste Your Place Participating Restaurants. These restaurants will be featuring local produce on their menus for the following two weeks! Check them out! 1. DePalma’s Downtown 2. East/West Bistro 3. Etienne 4. Farm 255 5. Five and Ten 6. Heirloom Café 7. Ike and Jane 8. La Dolce Vita 9. Last Resort 10. Lumpkin Café 11. Mama’s Boy 12. NONA 13. The National 14. Speakeasy.

Beaverdam SlowDown Dinner--July 30th & 31st!
You are invited to another Beaverdam SlowDown, hosted by the Roots Farm. Come join us for a gastronomic adventure celebrating local food right at the source. Enjoy the opportunity to relax on our serene 13 acre farm located just outside of Athens, GA. Sit back and enjoy a gourmet meal prepared by local
chefs from local ingredients. Experience the place where your food comes from; meet the farmers who grew the food you are eating.

This meal is about connection…the connection between food and place…the connection between farms and food…a connection between yourself and the people who grow your food…and the connection of a community of like minded people sharing a memorable evening together.

WHEN: July 30th & 31st, Saturday & Sunday night 7pm

WHAT: A sumptuous five course meal served over a leisurely two hours filled with: a short farm tour where you can see where your dinner came from, discussions of local food and farming issues, great opportunities to learn more about sustainable farming, and slow foods from local practitioners. The food for your vegetarian meal will be sourced almost exclusively from the fields of the Roots Farm as well as other local farms. Due the seasonal nature of this event, it is not possible to say exactly what will be on the menu for your SlowDown experience. Expect a tasty mixture of seasonal produce.

HOW: Reserve your seat now for this unique event! For reservations, contact us: Email Chris Lutz: This event is a fundraiser to benefit the activities of the Roots Farm. In exchange for your experience we ask for a $45 donation.

Green Beans
Finally, the green beans are coming on strong. We picked over 100 lbs on Tuesday!! Wow! Beans are indigenous to Central America and the Andean regions of South America. Snap, string, and stringless snap beans are among the most widely used garden vegetables in the U.S. Nutritionally, the early, fresh, “snap” or “green” phase of the bean is not as high in protein as its mature relative, the dried bean. However, green beans do have worthwhile amounts of vitamins A, B1, and B2, calcium, and potassium. This year, we’ve got several types out there, all pole beans (because they’re easier on our backs to pick ‘em). You may see the Rattlesnake beans--green with purple streaks, Blue Coco--deep purple, or Gold of Bacau--yellow. So far, the Rattlesnake beans are my favorite new crop this year, producing heavy and strong. Definitely a keeper that we’ll continue to grow next year. Sweet and delicioius, enjoy them!

Storage: Refrigerate fresh in a plastic bag and use as soon as possible. Beans will keep for about a week in the fridge. You can also freeze beans easily: blanch in boiling water for 2-3 minutes, rinse in cold water, drain, dry well, and pack into airtight containers, then freeze. Usage: beans can be eaten raw, steamed for 5-10 minutes until brightly colored and tender, but not soft and mushy, roast, grill, stir-fry, saute, stew, soup, or salad them. FYI, beans retain more nutrient when cooked uncut and purple or purple-streaked beans loose their fun colors and just go green. Have fun!

Roasted Green Beans
2 lbs green beans
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
coarse sea salt or kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Lightly grease a large sheet pan or shallow roasting pan with oil. Arrange the green beans in a single, uncrowded layer on the prepared pan. Drizzle the oil over the beans and roll the beans until they are evenly coated. Roast for about 15 minutes, or until the beans are well browned, shaking the pan occasionally for even cooking. Transfer the beans to a shallow serving bowl or platter and sprinkle with salt. Serve immediately. Makes 4 servings. From Serving Up the Harvest.

Saucy Green Beans
½-¾ lbs green beans
1 ¼ cups salted water
1 large onion, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
1 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp unbleached white flour
¼ cup sour cream
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp chopped fresh dill (1 ½ tsp dried)
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Rinse and trim the green beans and cut them in half. Bring trhe water to a rolling boil. Drop the onion slices into the boiling water. After a couple of minutes, add the green beans. Cook until the beans are tender. Drain, reserving the liquid. In a separate saucepan, make a roux. Melt the butter on low heat. Whisk in the flour and continue cooking for a minute or two, stirring constantly and taking care not to burn the roux. Whisk in about one cup of the reserved liquid, the sour cream, and the lemon juice. Add 2 tsp of the dill. Salt and pepper to taste. Place the beans in a serving dish and pour the sauce over them. Serve sprinkled with the rest of the dill. Makes 4 servings. From the Sundays at Moosewood Restaurant cookbook.

Scalloped Green Beans
3 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp flour
1 1/2 cups milk
1 1/2 cups grated sharp Cheddar
2 lbs green beans, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces (7-8 cups)
1 onion, halved and sliced
salt & fresh ground pepper
1/4 cup dried bread crumbs, or 1/2 cup fresh

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x13 inch baking dish with butter. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the flour to make a smooth paste. Stir in the milk and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and stir in the cheese. Cook, stirring constantly, until the cheese is melted and the sauce is smooth, about 3 minutes. Layer the beans and onion in the baking dish, generously sprinkling with the salt and pepper as you layer. Cover with the cheese sauce. Sprinkle the bread crumbs over the dish. Bake for 60 minutes. Serve hot. Makes 4 servings. From Serving Up the Harvest.

Green Bean Salad
1/4 cup coarsely chopped almonds
1 lb green beans
1 tsp salt, plus more to taste
Fresh ground black pepper
1 1/2 Tbsp lemon juice (~ 1/2 lemon)
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
4 oz Parmesan cheese, thinly shaved (~ 1/2 cup)

Toast the almonds in a dry, heavy skillet over high heat until they start to brown in spots and become fragrant. (Be careful not to overtoast them, as they will burn very quickly once toasted.) Immediately transfer the nuts to a dish to cool. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the beans and salt; cook until tender but still firm, 3-5 minutes. Transfer the beans to a colander in the sink and run cold water over them. Trim the beans if necessary. Toss the beans and almonds in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste. In a small bowl, whisk the lemon juice and olive oil until well combined. Pour this mixture over the beans and toss until well coated. Gently scatter the Parmesan shavings on top. Makes 4-6 servings. From Farmer John’s Cookbook.

Sephardic Green Beans (Fassoulia)
12-15 pearl onions (fresh or frozen)
2 lbs fresh green beans
1 tsp whole allspice
¼ tsp whole black peppercorns
3 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 tomatoes, coarsely chopped
1 tsp salt
1 cup water
pinch of brown sugar (optional)

If using fresh pearl onions, drop them whole into boiling water and boil for 3 minutes, then plunge into cold water. This makes peeling the onions much easier. Carefully cut off the stem ends and slip off the skins. Set aside. Remove the tip ends and stems of the green beans and cut each bean in half on the diagonal. Make a bouquet garni by placing the allspice and peppercorns in a small piece of cheesecloth, any clean porous fabric, or a coffee filter. Tie to close with string or thread. In a large saucepan, saute the garlic in the oil for a minute, stirring to prevent burning. Mix in the tomatoes, onions, beans, and salt. Continue to saute for a couple more minutes. Add the water, sugar, if desired, and the bouquet garni. Bring to a boil, and then reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes or until the beans are very tender. Remove the bouquet garni and adjust the salt and pepper to taste. Serve as a main dish or over couscous. Serves 4-6. From the Sundays at Moosewood Restaurant cookbook.

Kettle Stew (Mole de Olla)
1 cup chopped onions
1 large garlic clove, minced or pressed
1-2 Tbsp minced chiles
3 Tbsp vegetable or olive oil
½ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp ground cloves
4 small potatoes, cut into chunks (~2 cups)
3 cups undrained canned tomatoes, chopped (28 oz can)
2 cups cut green beans
1 small zucchini, sliced (~2 cups)
2 cups cut corn (frozen or fresh)
1-2 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
salt to taste
grated cheddar cheese or sour cream

In a stewpot or large saucepan, saute the onions, garlic, and chiles in the oil for about 5 minutes. Include the seeds from the chiles if you like a hotter stew, discard them if you don’t. Add the cinnamon, cloves, and potatoes and cook, covered, for another 5 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and the green beans, cover, and cook 5 minutes more. Add the zucchini and corn. Simmer, covered, on low heat until all the vegetables are tender. If the stew seems too dry, add tomato juice or water. Add cilantro, if desire, and salt to taste. Serve topped with plenty of grated cheese or sour cream. Makes 4 servings. From the Sundays at Moosewood Restaurant cookbook.

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