Category Archives: Caring & Storing

care for and store produce

Some Final Recipes and Storage tips

As you are receiving an abundance of some certain crops here these last few days of distribution, we wanted to offer up some storage tips to make the food last and some recipes.

Butternut Squash Soup:



Cut squash into 1-inch chunks. In large pot melt butter. Add onion and cook until translucent, about 8 minutes. Add squash and stock. Bring to a simmer and cook until squash is tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Remove squash chunks with slotted spoon and place in a blender and puree. Return blended squash to pot. Stir and season with nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Serve.

Potatoes: Should be stored in a dark, well ventilated, dry area away from other fruits and vegetables and at a cool room temperature. Potatoes emit ethylene gas which can cause other fruits and veggies such as onions to spoil faster so place them in their own drawer, cabinet, etc.

Popcorn: Air: Hang the corn in a dark and cool location until they are dried. Could be over a month. You also can spread them on a flat surface if you do not have room to hang them.

For the those of you who want to try some different methods for drying, cooking, etc., I found a good video here (  of someone who tried some experimenting with it and showed his results. He tried a few methods of drying including on and off the cob, in the oven, and using a dehydrator.

       Microwave: Very simple and easy..Simply microwave 1/4 cup of kernels in a small brown lunch paper bag. Make sure the bag is closed and folded over 3 or 4 times and firmly crease the seam so that it stays closed. No need to add any oil to the kernels as this won’t make much difference. If you wish to add more kernels, use a larger paper shopping bag.

Microwave for 2 – 4 minutes. Listen closely — when the time between pops slows to about 2 seconds, your popcorn is ready. Depending on your microwave, popping can finish in as little as 2 minutes or take as long as 4 minutes. Do not wait for all the kernels to pop; your popcorn will burn. It’s normal for there to be un-popped kernels in the bag.

Add some melted butter or oil and sprinkle with salt when finished cooking.

Stovetop Popcorn:

Yields: 2 servings  Cook time: 10 minutes


  • 3 Tbsp coconut, peanut, or canola oil (high smoke point oil)
  • 1/3 cup of popcorn kernels
  • 1 3-quart covered saucepan
  • 1 Tbsp or more (to taste) of butter (optional)
  • Salt to taste


1. Heat the oil in a 3-quart thick-bottomed saucepan on medium high heat. If you are using coconut oil, allow all of the solid oil to melt.

2. Put 3 or 4 popcorn kernels into the oil.

3 When the kernels pop, add the rest of the 1/3 cup of popcorn kernels in an even layer. Cover, remove from heat and count 30 seconds.

This method first heats the oil to the right temperature, then waiting 30 seconds brings all of the other kernels to a near-popping temperature so that when they are put back on the heat, they all pop at about the same time.

4 Return the pan to the heat. The popcorn should begin popping soon, and all at once. Once the popping starts in earnest, gently shake the pan by moving it back and forth over the burner.

Try to keep the lid slightly ajar to let the steam from the popcorn release (the popcorn will be drier and crisper).

Once the popping slows to several seconds between pops, remove the pan from the heat, remove the lid, and dump the popcorn immediately into a wide bowl.

With this technique, nearly all of the kernels pop, and nothing burns.

5 If you are adding butter, you can easily melt it by placing the butter in the now empty, but hot pan. Note that if you let the butter get just a little bit brown, it will add an even more intense, buttery flavor to the butter and to your popcorn. (Here’s more info on how to brown butter.) Just drizzle the melted butter over the popcorn and toss to distribute.

6 Salt to taste.


Butternut Squash Soup: foodnetwork; Butternut Squash Soup;

potatoes: food52; How to Store Potatoes; Lindsey-Jean Hard;

popcorn: simplyrecipes; How to Make Perfect Popcorn;

Storage tips: Corn, Eggplant, Tomato


Corn, if not eaten right away, is best kept in the refrigerator for up to two days. Keep the corn in the husk and place in the crisper drawer of your fridge.  After two days, the corn will still be okay to eat, but it will start to lose some of its sweet flavors. Your ears of corn can also be stored frozen.  To freeze corn first remove the husks and then boil for a few minutes. remove from boiling water, place in a freezer safe container and store for up to a year.


The best way to store eggplant is at room temperature in a vented bowl, and away from other produce such as bananas, tomatoes, and melons. These are known for producing high levels of ethylene, a natural gas produced by some ripening fruit. Eggplant is sensitive to this and if it is exposed it can cause your eggplant to over ripen and lose some of its texture and flavor.


Tomatoes should be stored at room temperature, potentially in a vented bowl of some sort, and NOT in the refrigerator.  Tomatoes are naturally a warm climate crop and placing them in a cool environment causes them to undergo chemical enzymatic reactions that lead to a lose of flavor and texture. If you can not consume your fresh vine ripened tomatoes in time, it is okay to place them in the fridge, but before consuming, consider placing them back in a warmer temperature area for a bit to regain some of the flavor.



Corn: How to store corn, by Melissa Lewis; September 21, 2017

Eggplant: The Best Place to Store Eggplant is not in the Refrigerator, by Emily Han; August 12, 2015

Tomato: How to Keep Tomatoes Fresh for Longer, by Lindsey Jean-Hard; August 29, 2017

Garlic scapes: what they are and the best storage for them!

We are happy to announce that we are now giving out delicious garlic scapes at distribution!

A common question I keep getting is: what the heck are garlic scapes?? Garlic scapes, sometimes called garlic stems, are the flower bud of the garlic plants. They are removed this time of you to encourage the bulb of the garlic to thicken up! They taste great and can be used the same way as garlic in many recipes!

A popular method of preserving the scapes is to chop them in to 1 inch pieces and freeze them in zipper freezer bags. This makes it easy to grab a handful of garlic scapes and add them to soups, stews, stir fry, omelets, or anything else you may use garlic as an ingredient in. The garlic scapes hold up really well when you freeze them and remain firm.

Gazpacho And Storage Tips

Here are some quick storage tips and a recipe for gazpacho which utilizes several of our veggies at distribution. This is a great way to use your tomatoes if you don’t have the time to make sauce. Enjoy!

Corn: Store uncovered in the fridge with husks still remaining. Cooler temperatures below 40 degrees will prevent the sugars in the corn from turning to starch.

Tomatoes: Here is some interesting information I read regarding storing tomatoes. Many people have experimented with the effect of this, and have found that it is best to only store fully ripe tomatoes in the fridge, and anything less than fully ripe in a cooler environment between 55 and 70 degrees if possible. They should keep for a day or two in this environment. The reason for this is that the flavor-producing enzymes – which develop during the ripening process – are affected by cooler temperatures. Because tomatoes originally came from a warm climate, their flavor development, coloration, and mealy texture can be affected if stored in the fridge too soon. Fully ripe tomatoes however, don’t seem to benefit from hotter temperatures since their enzyme activity has significantly slowed. Some of their flavor can still be revitalized though if allowed to recover at room temperature for a day or two after refrigeration.

Watermelons: Keep whole melons at room temperature, refrigerate and wrap tightly once cut.

Cantaloupe: Refrigerate whole cantaloupe once fully ripe for up to five days. Sliced cantaloupe without seeds will store for 1 – 2 days in a resealable container, yet if the seeds remain intact it should last up to 3 days since the seeds prevent the cantaloupe from drying out right away.

Gazpacho Recipe

  • Prep time: 25 minutes
  • Serves 8
  • 6 ripe tomatoes (about 3 lbs), peeled and chopped (yielding about 6 cups)
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped (about 1 1/4 cups)
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 1 sweet red bell pepper (or green) seeded and chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 1-2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 Tbsp chopped fresh chives
  • 1 clove garlic, minced (about 1 teaspoon)
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons sugar (more may be needed to balance out the acidity of the tomatoes, add to taste)
  • Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 6 or more drops of Tabasco sauce to taste
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce (omit for vegan or vegetarian option)
  • 2 cups tomato juice (or 1 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes if you don’t have tomato juice)
Place all ingredients in a large bowl. Use an immersion blender or blend in batches, to desired smoothness. Some prefer gazpacho somewhat chunky, in which case you can pulse just a few times in the blender.
Adjust seasonings to taste.

Place in a non-reactive container (tomatoes are acidic) to store. Chill several hours or overnight to allow the flavors to blend.


Reference:, Gazpacho, Fresh Pick: Cantaloupe, How to keep tomatoes fresh for longer, Watermelon 101, How to store corn on the cob

Drying Chili Peppers

Drying chili peppers is a great way to store them for the long-term. You don’t want to waste any of those chili peppers picked from that huge harvest this year. Here are a few ways to dry them so they don’t go to waste.

The Basic Method for Drying Chili Peppers

Wash your chili peppers thoroughly after picking to remove any dirt, then dry.

Place on a plate or a wire rack in a dry, well ventilated room. You can also string the chilies up on string or thread and hang to dry. Within several weeks, you will have dried chili peppers and you can grind them up or use them as ornaments as desired.

Oven Drying Instructions

Wash your chili peppers thoroughly after picking to remove any dirt.
Cut them in half, lengthwise to expose the pepper innards.
Arrange the chili peppers over a baking sheet.
Bake at low heat, about 100 to 135 degrees.
There is no set time to bake the chili peppers for drying. Keep an eye on them, turning every few minutes or so. You can leave the oven door cracked for some air flow. It will take several hours with this method. Keep in the oven until the moisture has been baked out of them. Use as desired!

Drying Chili Peppers Without an Oven – Air Drying

  1. In this case, dry your chili peppers whole. Do not slice.
  2. String them together on some strong thread with a few inches between each jalapeno peppers.
  3. Hang the chili peppers in direct sunlight. Be sure it is dry and warm.

It can take several weeks for the jalapeno to completely dry with this method, but it’ll be worth it!

Last but not least, you can also consider a food dehydrator, which is a more fool-proof method of drying chili peppers.

Drying Chili Peppers with a Dehydrator

A dehydrator is probably the easiest method for drying chili peppers. A dehydrator encloses the chili peppers and dries them overnight in soft heat. Slice them up before dehydrating for faster dehydration. You can find dehydrators in stores or online.

What can you do with your dried chili peppers?

Grind them up to make your own chili powder, which is like cayenne powder, or keep them whole and use them as you might use a sun-dried tomato. They can be rehydrated with hot water and go great with many recipes!


Ultimate Guide to Drying Hot Chili Peppers

Storing Chili Peppers – How To Dry Hot Peppers

Drying Chili Peppers

Canning Class Tuesday August 15th

Interested in learning more about canning and preserving your Tomatoes? Register for a canning class this Tuesday hosted by our gracious shareholder Terry Greenstein. Terry will lead participants in harvesting various ingredients including tomatoes in our fields, followed by a canning demonstration in making a spicy salsa at the Moose Hill Nature Center.

The class this Tuesday the 15th will run from 6:00 to 9:00 pm. See link below to register…Hope to see you there!

Storing Our New Veggies

Here are some quick tips about storing some of our new additions of garlic, eggplant, onions, peppers, and beans. Gotta keep those veggies for as long as possible!


Refrigerate?: No

At Freshest: 1 week

Optimal Storage: Store loose or in a breathable bag in a cool place. Refrigeration can lead to browning and off-flavors.

Freezing: Wash, peel, slice about ⅓-in/8-mm thick, blanch with ½ cup/120 ml lemon juice per 1 gl/3.8 L water, immerse in ice water, drain, then freeze in airtight container, leaving ½-in/12-mm of headspace.

Usage: Salt the flesh of older eggplant to remove bitterness.

Garlic and Shallots

Refrigerate?: Unpeeled, no; peeled, yes

At Freshest: Unpeeled, a few weeks to several months (garlic will last a bit longer); peeled, up to several weeks

Optimal Storage: Store unpeeled garlic and shallots in a cool, dark, and dry place in a well-ventilated container such as a basket or mesh bag. Do not store in plastic. To help prevent the heads from drying out, leave the papery skin on and break off cloves as needed. If peeled, store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Freezing: Peel garlic or chop shallots and store in an airtight container. Both will lose crispness when thawed but will retain most of their flavor.

Usage: In gardens, green garlic leaves can be used just like green onions. Similarly, if garlic grows a shoot while in storage, that can be eaten as well. Even garlic flowers are edible and have a mild flavor. Garlic scapes can also grow small shoots of garlic after being stored for several weeks.

Blend garlic with basil or blanched kale stems and other ingredients to make a pesto, which can be frozen for up to 6 months.

Green Beans

Refrigerate?: Yes

At Freshest: 3 to 5 days

Optimal Storage: Green beans and peas are fragile vegetables; they quickly degrade in quality, even at cold temperatures. Store unwashed peas and beans in the refrigerator in a breathable bag in the high-humidity drawer, but try to eat them as quickly as possible.

Freezing: Blanch, immerse in ice water, drain until dry, and then place in an airtight container.

Usage: If the pods are too tough to eat (this can happen when beans are over mature and bulging from the pods), they can still be shelled and eaten or refrigerated in an airtight container and used within 2 days.

Although often the ends of the beans are cut off before cooking, they need not be—remove only the stem end and enjoy the rest of the bean.

Salvage less-than-ideal green beans by removing any that are soft to the touch or slimy. Wash the remainder in cold water.

Briefly cooking older green beans can enhance their flavor.


Refrigerate?: No

At Freshest: Whole, several months; cut, 7 days

Optimal Storage: Store whole onions in a cool, dark, dry, well-ventilated place. Do not store in plastic. Remove onions with mold or other signs of dampness immediately so others aren’t affected. Storing in hanging sacks is a great idea, as it encourages ventilation. Do not store near potatoes; onions will cause the potatoes to sprout. Partially used onions should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, with the peel left on if possible.

Freezing: Remove the skins and root. Chop and freeze raw. Don’t blanch. Plan to use in cooked dishes when thawed.


Refrigerate? Yes

At Freshest: Whole, 5 to 7 days; cut, 3 days

Optimal Storage: Do not wash until ready to use. Store in a breathable bag in the low-humidity drawer of the refrigerator. Store cut peppers in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Freezing: Wash and core peppers, chop and lay out on a baking sheet to freeze, then transfer to an airtight container. Can also be blanched. Or roast peppers and then flatten them and pack into zip-top freezer bags. Best used for cooked dishes, as crispness can be lost when thawed.

Usage: Drying (hot peppers)—If you have a lot, string them up together and hang in a well-ventilated place in the sun as long as the evenings don’t get cool enough to cause dew. Alternatively, use a dehydrator or place in the oven at 120ºF/50ºC for several hours until fully dry.

Green peppers last a lot longer than red peppers, which are fully ripe when picked. All peppers start out green on the plant, then change to red or yellow, purple, etc.


Reference:, I want to store vegetables

Homemade Fire Cider Recipe – Medicinal Tonic

Last year, I decided to go to Standing Rock reservation in North Dakota to  be apart of the historical events that were taking place there. I went during thanksgiving weekend, at which point there were over 10,000 people camping out!

I got the chance to cook with a few Native Americans at one of the camp sites, and one interesting creation which really stood out to me was this medicinal tonic. It is made using a wide variety of herbs and spices. I have read articles referring to this drink as some sort of witch’s concoction, coming straight out of a Grimm’s fairy tale. The remedial effects of fire cider seem to be undeniable however, which is why I wanted to share it. The cider contains powerful immune-boosting and anti-inflammatory remedies that can help with our immune system, stimulate digestion, and warm us up on cold days.

The standard base ingredients are apple cider vinegar, garlic, onion, ginger, horseradish, and hot peppers, but there are plenty of other herbs I have included below that can be thrown in for an added kick.  Fire Cider can be taken straight by the spoonful, and because it has a very pungent and “firey” taste (It’s called fire cider for a reason!), I was advised to take only 1 tbsp in the morning to warm up while it was frigid, or up to 3 tbsp if I felt a cold coming.

How To Use Fire Cider:

Fire cider can be added to organic veggie juice (throw in some olives and pickles — a non-alcoholic, health-boosting bloody mary!), splashed in fried rice, or drizzled on a salad with olive oil. You can also save the strained pulp and mix it with shredded veggies like carrots, cabbage, broccoli, and fresh herbs to make delicious and aromatic stir-fries and spring rolls. There is a wide-range of ingredients you can add depending on what type of flavor you’re looking for, so feel free to experiment by using any particular spice, juice, or chopped veggie you think is appropriate.

Here is a batch of fire cider I made this past weekend…Due to its pungency it is preferable to drink in small portions, i.e 2 -3 tbsp

Homemade fire cider recipe


  • 1/2 cup fresh grated organic ginger root
  • 1/2 cup fresh grated organic horseradish root
  • 1 medium organic onion, chopped
  • 10 cloves of organic garlic, crushed or chopped
  • 2 organic jalapeno peppers, chopped
  • Zest and juice from 1 organic lemon
  • Several sprigs of fresh organic rosemary or 2 tbsp of rosemary leaves
  • 1 tbsp turmeric powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne powder
  • organic apple cider vinegar
  • raw local honey to taste


1. Prepare all of your roots, fruits, and herbs and place them in a quart-sized jar. If you’ve never grated fresh horseradish, be prepared for a powerful sinus opening experience!

2. Pour in apple cider vinegar until all ingredients are submerged. Use a piece of natural parchment paper under the lid to keep the vinegar from touching the metal, or a plastic lid if you have one. Shake well.

3. Store in a dark, cool place for a month and remember to shake daily.

4. After one month, use cheesecloth to strain out the pulp, pouring the vinegar into a clean jar. Be sure to squeeze as much of the liquidy goodness as you can from the pulp while straining.

5. Next comes the honey. Add 1/4 cup of honey and stir until incorporated.

6. Taste your cider and add another 1/4 cup until you reach the desired sweetness.

Herbal Ingredient Variations

These organic herbs and spices would make a great addition to Fire Cider creations.

Thyme, Horseradish root Powder, Rosehips, Sar Anise, Schisandra Berries, Astragalus, Parsley, Burdock, Oregano, Peppercorns, Beet Root Powder, Habanero Powder, Bird’s Eye Chili Powder, Whole Chili Peppers, Orange, Grapefruit, Lime peels/or juice.




Storing And Keeping Your Veggies Fresh

Seeing that we have all had quite a bit of leafy greens and onions lately, here are a few quick and usefull tips on how to keep your greens fresh for as long as possible in the fridge. I have also explained how to regrow your lettuce and onions after snipping the leaves.

Kale: Instead of simply throwing them anywhere in the fridge, keep them in the coolest part of the fridge seeing that they lose their flavor when kept at room temperature for too long, but have a sweeter taste when subjected to cooler temperatures. Wrap them in a paper towel and store in a plastic zip-loc bag.

Swiss Chard: I have experimented a bit with this one in the past, and have found one of the most optimal ways is to lightly dampen paper towels before wraping them around the leaves. It is also helpful to cut out the center stems of each leaf. Chard is able to grow well in both very hot and cold temperatures, and they also hold well under certain levels of moisture. Without over stuffing, place the wrapped leaves in either a plastic bag or storage container into the fridge.

Radish: Radishes also do well under moisted conditions…One option is to wash and trim the roots, removing both the greens and the small tap root extending out the bottom. Drain excess water and stuff radishes in a large canning jar with layers of trimmed radishes. Fill the rest of the jar with water, put on the lid, and keep it in the fridge. The roots will stay crisp for five to eight days. Radishes can store for several weeks however when placed unwashed and greens removed in a plastic zip-loc bag with a slightly damp, folded paper towel at the bottom. Put the bag in a cool, moist, dark place, like the crisper drawer of the fridge.

Image result for storing radishes

Spring Onion: Store spring onion leaves in a plastic baggie or container with a slightly dampened paper towel wrapped around them.

Also, instead of throwing out the small root bulbs, you can place them in a jar filled with just enough water to cover the roots so that they will regrow! Leave about a 1/2 and inch of onion or more above the root, and place the jar close to a window sill so that they can recieve decent sunlight.  Change the water every other day or so, and add water when it becomes low. The onions will be drinking the water so keep an eye out for when the roots need more water.

Image result for regrowing spring onions

You can also plant these cut onions in your garden, or even a simple milk carton filled with topsoil or potting soil. They will continue to regrow with ease.

Lettuce: Similar to Kale, wrap in a paper towel and store in either a plastic bag or container. Remove all leaves from the core stem of lettuce as they will last longer this way. Make sure to not wash any of the above mentioned greens before storing into fridge.

Lettuce will also regrow in almost the same way as spring onion. Leave an inch or two of leaves above the bottom root stub, and place in a shallow dish with about a half-inch of water. Place near sunlight, change water every 1 – 2 days, and watch them regrow. You can also plant this same form of cut lettuce in potting soil and they should continue growing with adequate water and sunlight.

Image result


“8 tips to harvest and store radishes” 

“How to regrow romaine lettuce from the stem”

“How to store green onions/scallions”

Green Grows The Berry

Strawberries are fickle and ephemeral. In one day, strawberries can pop from a field of green on green, to one afloat with the deep red of ripe berries. In the same amount of time, these tender berries can be picked over by birds, bugs, beasts, and berry mad farmers.

If the anxiety of waiting for the berries to ripen is overwhelming, then try this preemptive recipe to alleviate the tension.

Pickled Green Berries


  • 1 pint of green strawberries, washed and hulled
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ½ teaspoon celery seed
  • ½ teaspoon caraway seeds
  • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds
  • pinch of red pepper flakes (if you want add a little heat)
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup white vinegar
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons honey or sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoon coarse sea salt or pickling salt


  1. Clean and dry a jar big enough to hold all the strawberries. Fill the jar with the washed and hulled green strawberries, packing them tightly together. Add the black peppercorns, bay leaves, celery seeds, caraway seeds, yellow mustard seeds and red pepper flakes (if using) over the top of the strawberries. Set the jar aside while you prepare the brine.
  2. In a saucepan over low heat add the vinegars, water, honey and sea salt. Gently simmer until the honey and salt has dissolved. Set the mixture aside until it has cooled completely. Pour the mixture over the green strawberries (if it doesn’t completely cover the strawberries you will need to make more brine). Cover the jar and give it a few gentle shakes to move all the spices around a bit. Refrigerate the green strawberries for at least a few days before using.
  3. NOTE: Normally you would add the brine while it was still hot, but for this recipe you want it to cool down so the strawberries don’t become mushy and chewy.


Shared Appetite 

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