Fall Farmer Food Recap

I'm a bit behind on posting some of the wonderful creations me and my coworks have made this fall using things that are leftover on the farm or things we've traded with at market. 

 This one is just a bunch of random stuff leftover from market, but the picture looks really fancy (aka I can't really remember what it is, but don't it look nice) 

Thai style winter squash : I cooked winter squash (any type will do) then topped it with coconut oil, honey, thai five spice, sesame seeds and a bit of salt. 

Tomato soup: Right before lunch we took a bunch of 2nd tomatoes, oregano, leeks and some kind of hazelnut noodle (they were in the shape of those butter mints they serve at weddings). Turned out great. The tomatoes were so sweet.     

 Sauteed veggies. I believe we went Asian style on this one. Turnips, napa cabbage, leeks, sesame seeds, and smoked salmon. I think we seasoned with roasted sesame oil, soy sauce and sriracha.   

Smoked salmon salad thing on top of toast, side of extra sharp cheddar, sauteed golden beets in coconut oil.  

This fall on the farm the most awesome thing happened that could have ever happened. We got a fire pit! It's the coolest hang out for lunch breaks and post work parties. This photo was from our weekly potluck. My dish to share was the quesadillas with sauteed greens, chimichurri, and blue cheese. It went over better than I was expecting. I thought it was yummy but I wasn't sure how it would go over. Nailed it ... on accident. 


Some Fantastic Fall Festivities

Harvest Party at Oxbow

Me and one of my coworkers getting the afterparty started. You know how I love my Ginger Ale. 

A friend of the farm makes these really cool mini veg-scapes for the party every year. This year was the squash alien invasion. 

I love the perspective of this photo. It's like your right there in the squash alien action

The Pumpkin Patch

On a Saturday I took my bro and his kids down to the farm to grab pumpkins from the pumpkin patch. 
Then we had a bonfire lunch with some of my coworkers.

Everyone had fun...
...And everyone was tired by the end of the day. 

Afternoon in Seattle with my Bro

First time trying the best sandwiches in the city. If you've never been to Paseo, put it high on your list. It changes you. We took our sandwiches down to the Ballard waterfront. It was a windy day but the skies were clear and sail boats everywhere. We even had a bunch of creepy crows circling while we savored our sandwiches.

 We walked off the sandwiches a bit before getting in the car

We ended the day by going down to pikes place market and the Seattle waterfront. I kind of dig waterfronts especially after moving to WA. I think it's b/c there are some really great ones here and after being in heavenly forested areas so much, this girl from the California prairies needs to see some horizons now and then.


Veterans Days -- Adventuring with the Gals

For your listening pleasure (keep reading, I explain) 

On Veterans day me and some friends decided to do a little bit of Washington adventuring. We started the day with breakfast at the Maltby Cafe. Best breakfast in Washington and it's right down the street from me. Score! 

  It's nice to go out with gals that just want to try everything on the menu, so they were okay with order several plates and eating family style. 

 They are so lovely 

 Big Cinnamon Roll! Best shared with friends unless you want to be sick.  

We forgot to take a picture of the before, but I think it does the food more justice to show plates cleared. Everything was good but I have to say the winner for me was the Country Style Eggs Benedict.  Try it if you get the pleasure. 

Everyone was quiet for a the next half hour while we were all digesting. I was driving so in efforts to keep things lively I introduced the gals to my new favorite album. Yes, that would be the Rick Astley's "Whenever You Need Somebody" album that I scored at value village. It's a toe tapper and I can't listen to it without laughing out loud (and not the cop out "lol" people use to be polite in text messages). 

This dude is the package ladies. Here is a little list of why. 

  1. Deep Voice
  2. Gangling and Red-headed (both of which he works with the help of heavily padded blazers and mousse, respectfully) 
  3. Swoon inducing dance moves
  4. He's Gonna fix all my problems. This is more than just a feeling. I know he will because every song he sings, reassures this fact to me. 
  5. If he's singing from the heart than he's the doormat that every girl has dreamed of 

This song is a favorite song of mine and became a kind of the anthem of our trip. I'm glad the other gals could dig it with me. They shared my love for the way he sings "Maybe" at min 0:19. It's absolutely jarring. The first time I heard it, I had this montage run in my head of being serenaded by Rick at point blank range, all the while trying to keep a flattered composure as my ear drums bust and my hair blows in bursts at every time he sings "Maybe" 

Next stop was Deception Pass on Whidbey Island. 

 I'd like to dedicate this photo to my sister and our really good friend. It reminded me of all our outings to Point Reyes which usually involved crawling on the beach for cool rocks.   

We found a little bitty tide pool. 

We continued to make our way down the Island stopping in Oak Harbor for some thrifting and hot chocolate. Between the sugar and driving I was a bit tired so at my request when we got to Fort Casey we took a little rest before exploring. 

This is a view from the fort over looking the sound toward Port Townsend. After we were done at the fort we stopped in Langley for some pizza and then rushed off to the ferry bound for home. It was a really stellar day. Good sites, Great weather (for this time of year) and Wonderful company. Thanks ladies!


Fennel Flowers & Goat Cheese

I wrote the following for week 19 of Oxbow's 2013 CSA newsletter. Here is a link to the newsletter if your interested in seeing the final product and learning a bit more about my role on the farm. 

I have many favorite veggies that we grow here on the farm but I would have to put Fennel high in the ranks of my favorites. 2013 has been a stellar year for our dear little fennel friends here at Oxbow so as a farmer and fennel lover, I was really happy that one of our longtime CSA members took the time at the harvest party to tell me how much she has been enjoying all the fennel in her box this season.

I was introduced to fennel a few years before I started working at Oxbow, but now that I am coming to the close of my 2nd season here, I have come to appreciate it on a whole new level. I am always finding new and interesting ways to use it, whether they come from some crazy idea that pops into my head, a coworker tells me about a recipe they like, or I stumble across something online. Some of my my favorite fennel recipes are roasted and served with lemon pepper chicken, candied (bulb and/or stems) with lemon rid, and this year fennel flowers served over goat cheese. 

I had never used fennel flowers before this summer, but once they started coming in from the fields, it seems I couldn't get enough of them. Over the past several weeks, I have brought different variations of goat cheese and fennel flowers to our weekly lunch potluck. Every time I thought I was done experimenting with this dish and it was time to move on, a new idea would pop in my head and I had to try it the next week. Luckily, people either genuinely enjoyed it or did a really good job humoring me (I choose to believe the former). I hope that you enjoy the fennel flowers in your box this week. They will make you feel like a fancy gourmet cook with very little effort.  

Farmer Food Fennel Flowers
When there are extra or damaged items form the CSA or restaurants pack-outs, they go in a create at the end of the table and become "Farmer Food". That's some good looking farmer food. 

Below are a few of my favorite variations of the fennel flower and goat cheese evolution. 

Fennel Flower & Goat Cheese version 2.0

Version 2.0. What's New : Fresh allium of your choice (shallot in in photo) drizzled with olive oil 

Served over slice of artisan bread 

Fennel Flower & Goat Cheese version 3.0

 Version 3.0. What's New : Caramelized allium of your choice (shallot in in photo) drizzled with olive oil 

Carmelizing the shallots breaks down the starches to sugars so its really nice and sweet

Fennel Flower & Goat Cheese version 4.0

 Version 4.0. What's New : Fresh allium of your choice (shallot in in photo), drizzled with olive oil and served with baked pears.
I switched back to fresh alliums for this version because I wanted the spice of the fresh allium to counter balance the sweetness of the baked pear. 

Oxbow Farm in all it's Fall potluck glory


Fall in Washington means....

"Fall in Washington means you treat every sunny day like it's the last".

This has become a motto of mine since moving here. I don't mind the weather here, but for me getting Sun keeps me happy and synthesizing vitamin D.  So when the Sun is out, I try to be too.  When the sun is not out, I still try and get out and be active. It's the best way to beat the winter blues. 

On a Sunday afternoon a few weeks ago my brothers and I went on a walk to the park with my nieces and nephew. My nephew wanted to bring a skateboard and one of my nieces insisted on bring a bag of tongue depressors (we didn't have to use them but I was glad we had them all the same). The kids look most of the photos. I think they turned out pretty good.