CSA: May 29 and 31, 2017

In the box

4 heads broccoli
2 quarts strawberries
2 dozen free-range eggs
2 bags sweet potatoes
2 bunches beets, with tops
2 bunches spring onions

Total retail value of this week’s box: $52
Total value of goods distributed so far this year: $301

Cooking ideas

Night 1: Serve a side dish of grilled sweet potatoes. I made this recipe a few years ago and really liked the combination of citrus and sweet potatoes. I’d recommend adding a bit of cumin and crushed red pepper or cayenne to the spices you toss the potatoes with, and a squeeze of orange juice (along with lemon or lime) goes nicely in the dressing.
Night 2: Farm-fresh broccoli is so tasty that my favorite thing to do with it is chop it up raw in salads. A salad with broccoli, chopped hard-boiled eggs, chopped green parts of the spring onions and some leftover grilled sweet potatoes would be delicious!
Night 3: Spanish Tortilla made with Sweet Potatoes
Night 4: Sandwiches or burgers with a side of beet chips (I finally broke down and bought a mandoline for this)
Night 5: Sauteed beet greens and spring onions, topped with an egg
Night 6: Beet, goat cheese and walnut tart
Night 7: If you’ve still got a few beets, these dark chocolate beet brownies would go great with vanilla ice cream and strawberries.

CSA: May 22 and 24, 2017

In the box:

2 quarts strawberries
1 pound asparagus
1 pint sugar snap peas
1 dozen eggs
2 bunches beets, with tops
4 pounds pick-your-own strawberries at Braehead Farm, to be picked between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. between Monday, May 22, and Thursday, May 25.

Total retail value of this week’s box: $41
Total value of goods distributed so far this year: $249

Cooking ideas:

**Note: The greens atop these beets are very similar to Swiss chard and can be used in the same way. Below we include them in the week’s meal plan. You will want to separate the greens from the beets as soon as you get home, otherwise the beets will get soft.

Night 1: Asparagus risotto
Night 2: Grilled steak salad with beets and scallions
Night 3: Beet greens and feta pasta
Night 4: Grilled chicken salad with sugar snap peas and strawberries
Night 5: Beet green frittata
Night 6: Breakfast for dinner: Buttermilk pancakes with roasted strawberries
Night 7: Strawberry-beet salad

The best bet for locavores this Memorial Day weekend

Snead's Farm AsparagusSpend Memorial Day weekend enjoying a truly unique local dining experience at the Snead’s Farm Asparagus Festival May 27-29. There will be no entry fee to visit the farm on these days from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m.

This weekend is likely to be the end of asparagus season here at the farm. Buy it while it lasts for $5 a pound. We also have raspberries, strawberries, yellow squash, sugar snap peas and more.

The Well at Snead’s Farm will be serving a farm-to-fork menu each day, from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. The chefs at Sunken Well have had grass-fed beef from Fredericksburg’s Braehead Farm butchered specially for this event. They’ll be serving the Snead’s Asparagus Burger, topped with Swiss cheese and loads of grilled asparagus.

Other menu items include:

  • Locavore Salad, with sugar snap peas, asparagus, spring onions, local lettuces and Braehead Farm strawberry dressing.
  • Braehead Farm Strawberries
  • Snead’s Farm Asparagus
  • Barbecue
  • Hot Dogs

The Well will also have a selection of local beers and wines, including Spencer Devon’s Snead’s Farm Blackberry Saison beer, along with a selection of other asparagus dishes.

While you’re at the farm, be sure to spend some time strolling around. Say hello to our lambs, sheep, llamas, goats, cows, horses and more, and purchase fresh-cut asparagus at the carport.

And if you decide you’d like to keep coming back every week to pick up your very own box of hand-picked local fruits and vegetables, you can still sign up to join our 2017 CSA.

**Please, no outside food.**

CSA: May 15 and 17, 2017

In this week’s box:

2 quarts strawberries
1 pound rhubarb
2 dozen free-range eggs
2 4-pound bags sweet potatoes
2 2-pound bags asparagus
4 pounds pick-your-own strawberries at Braehead Farm, to be picked between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. between Monday, May 15, and Thursday, May 18

Total retail value of this week’s box: $69
Total value of goods distributed so far this year: $208

Cooking ideas:

Night 1: If you’ve never cooked rhubarb before, know that it is very tart, making it a wonderful match for strawberries. This recipe for strawberry-rhubarb pie also includes a nice explanation of how to use rhubarb. If you’re not in the mood to make pie crust (I promise, it’s not that hard), opt for this strawberry-rhubarb crisp.
Night 2: Sweet potato coconut curry soup
Night 3: Asparagus frittata
Night 4: This asparagus-strawberry salad would pair nicely with any grilled meat.
Night 5: Sweet potato latkes (I might pick up a few links of sausage at Braehead Farm this week to serve alongside these.)
Night 6: Blanched asparagus (store it in the fridge for 1-2 days) draped over egg-salad tartines
Night 7: Sweet potato and black bean enchiladas

CSA shares still available!

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Shares in our 2017 CSA are still available. Join this week to take advantage of this week’s bonus add-on: pick up to 4 pounds of pick-your-own strawberries at Braehead Farm, now through Thursday, 9 a.m. until 6 p.m.

You must be a Snead’s Farm CSA member to take advantage of this opportunity. To join the CSA this week, go to Snead’s Farm on Wednesday, May 10, between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. with our CSA contract and payment. You may pay extra to receive delivery at Braehead Farm or North Stafford in subsequent weeks, but this week you must sign up and take home your box from Snead’s Farm.

Click here to download the CSA contract.

Click here to see what else is in this week’s box.

CSA: May 8 and 10, 2017

In the box:

**UPDATE: We have added 4 pounds (per membership) pick-your-own strawberries this week. Strawberries may be picked at Braehead Farm, from Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. Be sure to stop in at the market and tell them the name on your membership.

4 quarts strawberries
2 2-pint bags sugar snap peas
1 dozen free-range eggs
2 bunches collard greens
2 bunches Swiss chard
2 bunches spring onions

Total retail value of this week’s box: $65
Total value of goods distributed so far this year: $139

Cooking ideas

Night 1: Swiss chard, strawberry and feta salad
Night 2: Throw a bone-in chicken breast on the grill, coat it in barbecue sauce and serve alongside these Southern-style collard greens
Night 3: Sesame roasted snap peas would go nicely with some rice and this easy hoisin baked salmon
Night 4: I recently heard an interview with an NYC pizza chef where he encouraged adding raw chopped greens as a final topping to pizza before it goes into the oven. The parts of the greens touching the cheese will wilt and melt into the pizza, and the parts sticking up will get crispy (kind of like kale chips) and add nice texture. You could try this with either chard or collards. Here is my go-to recipe for homemade pizza.
Night 5: Swiss Chard Cakes (I know the recipe calls for 3-4 bunches, but with only 2 eggs, you’re probably going to be fine using one bunch, or even less.)
Night 6: Quinoa salad with sugar snap peas
Night 7: Giant collard leaves make a nice alternative to rice paper for these spring rolls . Or go a different direction with Italian Stuffed Collard Greens.

CSA: May 1 and 3, 2017

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In the box

10 pounds asparagus
2 quarts strawberries
2 4-pound bags sweet potatoes
2 bunches spring onions
2 bunches kale

Total retail value of this week’s box: $74

Cooking ideas

Night 1: Kick off asparagus season with what remains my favorite simple preparation: Grilled asparagus.
Night 2: Get your wok, pan or cast-iron skillet screaming hot and make this steak and asparagus stir fry. You can sub out the red pepper and use kale or spring onions instead.
Night 3: This week and next are teacher appreciation week at many schools. If you need a breakfast casserole to bring (or if you just want to serve a make-ahead breakfast for dinner in your own home), try this overnight asparagus strata. Again, lose the red peppers and use what you have. You could sub in either spring onions or kale, chopped into bite-size pieces.
Night 4: Feel virtuous after eating this Kale and Strawberry Salad.
Night 5: This asparagus and sweet potato chicken skillet makes a quick one-pot meal.
Night 6: Sub in kale for spinach in this quiche made with a sweet potato crust.
Night 7: An easy alternative to sometimes-fussy cream of asparagus soup recipes is this pan-roasted asparagus soup from Mark Bittman.

We are open!

asparagus

We are selling asparagus at the carport daily from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. starting Friday, April 21.

Asparagus is $5 a pound. Get this delicious spring treat while it lasts!

Want more delicious Snead’s Farm goodies all summer long? Join our CSA while you’re here buying asparagus. Find the contract here.

Come to the Snead’s Farm Asparagus Festival May 27-29

Snead's Farm Asparagus Festival

Join us during Memorial Day weekend as we celebrate the asparagus harvest!

There is no entry fee for the asparagus festival. Just come on out to the farm 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Say hello to our lambs, sheep, llamas, goats, cows, horses and more, and purchase fresh-cut asparagus at the carport.

The Well at Snead’s Farm will be open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., serving the Snead’s Farm Asparagus burger–made with Braehead Farm beef and topped with a generous helping of asparagus. The Well will also have a selection of local beers and wines, including Spencer Devon’s Snead’s Farm Blackberry Saison beer, along with a selection of other asparagus dishes.

Snead’s Farm will open for daily asparagus sales starting Friday, April 21. We will be open daily, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Asparagus may be purchased at the carport next to the house.

And there’s still time to join our 2017 CSA. Our first pickup will be May 1 for Monday customers, May 3 for Wednesday customers. This is shaping up to be a fantastic year for the CSA. Don’t miss out; download the contract here and join so that you can be in on the best deal around for supporting local farms and eating delicious local produce.

 

 

5 things to do before your CSA starts

The first pickups of the Snead’s Farm CSA 2017 season will be May 1 for Braehead Farm and North Stafford customers, and May 3 for Snead’s Farm customers. You can still join the CSA by downloading the contract here. This post is written by Emily Freehling, who writes the weekly e-mails that offer tips on how to use the Snead’s Farm CSA. 

Snead's Farm CSA Box

This will be my family’s seventh year participating in the Snead’s Farm CSA. In that time, I’ve come to anticipate the start of this season.

It signals the end of bringing home plastic clamshell containers of tired, flavorless lettuce from the supermarket and the start of a time when I’ve got an abundance of vibrant, fresh greens to build menus around. It means weekly trips to the farm and a vegetable list that gives me a head start on the week’s meal planning.

It’s true that a CSA membership is something to be carefully considered. You will have to cook, maybe more than you are used to.

But if you take the month of April to make a few preparations, you’ll be set up for success, and can make the most of your investment.

Here is my pre-CSA to-do list:

  1. Sign up for the Snead’s Farm e-mail list. We send an e-mail every Sunday that gives you a list of what to expect in your CSA box for the week, along with recipes and tips for using your produce. Click here for the signup form, and make sure to check the box for your CSA pickup location if you want to receive the weekly CSA e-mail. To ensure you receive these e-mails, make sure the e-mail address news@sneadsfarm.com is on your accepted senders list (Don’t send e-mails there, though; you’re better off calling the farm or sending a Facebook message.). If you use gmail and you find these going into your promotions tab, simply click on the message and drag the e-mail into your primary inbox if you want the weekly CSA list to appear there.
  2. Clean out the fridge. You’re going to need fridge space for all the good stuff that’s coming your way, and you’ll want to put this beautiful produce in a clean fridge. So clean out all those old jars you’re never going to empty, wipe down the surfaces to get rid of those random spills that have solidified over the winter, clear the dried lettuce leaves and shriveled berries from the corners of your produce drawers and make way for the good stuff.
  3. Assess your equipment. My big kitchen splurge this year will be a second salad spinner (Crazy, right?). I have found over the years that if my greens are washed and ready, I’m a lot more likely to use them in smoothies, on sandwiches, and in any other spur-of-the-moment concoction I might be making. So when I bring home my box, I immediately fill my spinner with cold water, prep my chard, kale, collards, beet tops, lettuce or other green (with chard, kale and collards, this means separating the leaves from the stems and tearing them into bite-sized pieces) and let them soak in the water. You might need to fill the spinner two or three times if there’s a lot of dirt on your greens. Then I spin them dry and store them in the spinner in the fridge. This is why I need a second spinner, because I’ll either have more greens I want to prep this way, or I’ll want to use a spinner to wash and dry other produce, like sugar snap peas. Here are some other pieces of equipment to make sure you have on-hand:
    • a good, sharp chef’s knife
    • a paring knife
    • two to three solid cutting boards
    • a vegetable peeler
    • a box grater (or a Cuisinart, if you prefer)
    • at least two solid metal sheet pans for roasting batches of vegetables
    • zip-top bags or freezer-safe containers for storing soups, purees, pestos and other ways of preserving surplus produce
    • an 11-inch cast-iron skillet (I use this for stir-fries, frittatas, quesadillas and really just about anything else I cook that doesn’t involve tomatoes. It lives on my stovetop.)
    • smaller colanders for berries and other vegetables
  4. Stock up on staples. I like to try to make fewer trips to the grocery store when I’m getting my CSA box. One way to do that is to have lots of staples on-hand that can make a meal out of just about any produce you happen to have. Here are some ideas:
    • Tortillas and shredded cheese – because you can saute just about anything and put it in a quesadilla.
    • Grains – Wheat berries, farro, rice, couscous, bulgur, quinoa…and any other grain you can think of can be tossed with roasted bite-size vegetables and feta cheese, drizzled with olive oil and either vinegar or lemon juice and made into a delicious salad. Grains can also be a nice addition to frittatas, soups and other dishes you might make with your CSA bounty.
    • Beans – Whether dried or canned, having lentils, black beans, garbanzos, canelinnis, pintos and other beans around means you’re never stuck if you forgot to take the meat out of the freezer. Make soup, a burrito, a salad and more with this cheap protein.
    • Soy sauce, rice vinegar and brown sugar – These three ingredients plus your vegetables are all you need for a stir-fry. Adding grated ginger (keep it in the freezer) and chopped garlic makes it even better. It’s worth investing in a bottle of toasted sesame oil to drizzle on top of the finished product.
    • Good olive oil – buy a good bottle and use it only for making dressings or drizzling over dishes just before you eat them. Buy a cheaper bottle for cooking.
    • Salad dressing ingredients – You may have your favorite recipe, but homemade dressing is the perfect complement to fresh spring greens. I always start with a dollop of Dijon mustard, add a pinch of salt and pepper, some chopped herbs if I have them, then one part vinegar and three parts olive oil (more or less, depending on your taste). Shake or stir it up and you’re ready to go.
    • Flour and yeast – mainly for making homemade pizza dough.
    • Lemons – A squeeze of lemon can make most things taste better.
  5. Get excited. Participating in a CSA is a wonderful way not only to eat more vegetables, but also to educate yourself and your family on where food comes from. Farming is very weather-dependent, but Snead’s Farm partners with other local farms to ensure the highest diversity and quality of goods offered, all grown locally. In addition to Snead’s Farm, produce in this CSA also comes from C&T Produce of Stafford County, The Canning Farm and Steve Minter Farm of King George County, Timber Ridge Fruit Farm in Frederick County, Va., Westmoreland Berry Farm and Braehead Farm of Fredericksburg. Your support of this CSA helps keep all of these small farms in business, keeping land in farm use and benefitting the local food system and environment.

Mark your calendars for May 1 or 3 and don’t miss that first pickup. Happy eating!