Farm NewsLetter 06/19/06

Week of June 19th, 2006

The farm got a really nice write up this month in Portland’s newest foodie magazine, Edible Portland. Their tag line is “celebrating the abundance of local foods, season by season,” and the first two issues have had some terrific articles. Okay, maybe I’m biased, but I thought they did a nice job with one of my favorite aspects of our farm- the community. They also did an article about one of our best restaurant accounts, Navarre and the chef/owner John Taboada. John has made a huge commitment to buying local and we have a CSA-like relationship with him that is exceptional. We pick for him, like we do for the CSA, at the peak of ripeness and deliver it immediately. We talk a few days before the delivery, but it is less like an order and more like a conversation. He always wants to hear from us what is looking good out in the fields, then he decides how to use what we have on the farm to make the specials at the restaurant. Other articles in the magazine this month ran the gamut from wildcrafting to ice cream sandwiches and there were some great recipes included too. Pick up a copy at local food stores or the farmers market or subscribe at

There is still time to sign up for the Tour d’Organics 2006 bike ride happening this Sat. June 24th. It starts at the Ecotrust building in downtown Portland, then offers a variety of options, 35, 65 and 100 miles loops, to encourage riders of all abilities. I think that all the routes will visit Luscher Farm, and the longer rides continue on to farms in Canby, Corbett & Troutdale. Rest stops at the farms will be well stocked with produce from the farms and other healthy munchies. For more info or to register visit or call 866-258-6179.

A big thank you to longtime shareholder Eric Brakstad for putting his carpentry skills to work t the 47th Ave Farm yet again. On the back of the big shed he and his crew build for us last year he has added a beautiful rustic kiwi arbor. I don’t imagine we’ll have much a harvest this season, but I know we’ll be enjoying lots of kiwis in the years to come. The arbor is on top of our newest stone wall- The Undulation- as it has come to be known. This amazing piece, like the rest of the stunning stonework that surrounds us at that farm, was built for us by Eric Contey and his crew. To Jared & Mike we are especially appreciative since they put in considerable time on this latest project.

The Weather: Nice to have cooler temps and a bit of rain
Thank you everyone for all your help!
Your share this week may include:

Broccoli The first of the season, these heads are sweet and tender.
Chard Beautiful colors and tasty too!
Collards This is one of my favorite greens. It has a thicker leaf than the raab or turnip greens so it will hold up better in soups & stews than the others. That said, it does not necessarily need to be cooked for a long time. I often just sear it (with salt & olive oil) until it wilts, steam for a few minutes more and voila- good fast food.
Lettuce Mix Time for more summer salad.
Walla Walla Sweet Onions Yum!
Parsley This flat leaf Italian variety will be a staple throughout the summer. I made parsley pesto to drizzle on our soup at lunch.
Peas The perfect sweet snack!
Raab This traditional Italian cooking green has a leaf similar to mustard with a milder flavor and often a bit of flower bud on the stem.
Spinach Picked at the peak of perfection! This variety really likes the mild rainy weather we’ve been having and these leaves are about as good as spinach gets. Hakuri Turnips aka Salad turnips because they are so mild and sweet they can be eaten raw or roasted.

Coming Soon… Savoy Cabbage & Cauliflower!

Hortopita—Wild Greens Pie, From Modern Greek by Andy Harris
Via Shareholder Avigail Hurvitz-Prinz

Make or buy 1 unsweetened pie crust

2 pounds mixed greens such as mustard, raab, arugula, spinach, swiss chard and/or parsley
2 yellow onions, peeled, chopped & sauteed
8 oz feta, crumbled
1/2 cup grated kefalotiri or parmesan cheese
3 eggs, beaten
1 tablespoon dried oregano
3 tablespoons fresh mint
3 tablespoons olive oil

Carefully rinse the greens & cook them lightly. Combine greens with remaining ingredients in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly oil a 9 inch round pie tin. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured board to a thickness of 1/4 inch and loosely place into pie tin so that the pastry covers the bottom and hangs over the sides. Put the filling into the pastry-lined tin and pull the remaining pastry over the filling to create a top to the pie, tucking and pinching any loose pastry bits into the sides. Bake for 45 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Allow to cool. Serve either hot or cold