February, and all is well!

But what a whirlwind January was! Lots of frosty mornings and sunny afternoons. We got a few moments of rain and had a couple days of almost 60s. And then there were the 3 days of low teens to mid twenties with no direct sunlight. Luckily for us, our animals, plants, and selves are resilient and able to weather the swings. There was definitely celebration at all the turns. We found Johnny Jump-Up Violets blooming in the 2-acre. The hoarfrost on the trees was spectacular after 3 days of freezing fog. And you should have seen the dancing and elevating of heart and shoulders last Friday when the sun really came out. So much to be grateful for.

Did you know that this is the half way point in the Winter CSA? We are still working through all the varieties of storage roots and sweet winter squash and fresh Siberian Kale. You’ve probably noticed that there are some repeats, Yay for Purple Viking Potatoes and Onions! But we try to keep the surprises coming.

This week we are excited to bring you 2 new to this winter’s CSA varieties–Golden Beets and Winter Sweet Kabocha Squash–and a brand new vegetable for the winter, Celeriac! (See the Recipe Corner below for all that is the wonders of celeriac.)

Golden beets are a treat and should be savored. This is the beet to roast and serve as a delicious salad. A vibrant yellow excellently paired with massaged Siberian Kale, balsamic reduction or vinaigrette, pickled thinly sliced red onion, and chèvre. Maybe add some candied nuts in there for a real treat!

The Winter Sweet kabocha squash is a beautiful chalky green and grey on the outside and orange on the inside. It is known for its sweetness, flaky texture, and depth of flavor. This would be an excellent squash for roasting, steaming, sautéing, baking, frying, and braising. It holds up very well when cooking.

The skin is tough, so use a sharp knife and peel it carefully. You could also microwave it for a bit to soften the skin a smidge. Food and Wine has a great slide show of recipes that include Kabocha squashes. One even includes wheatberries and another includes a roasted chicken and Diakon radish! Very Rainshadow Organics forward.

At the halfway point, it is time to celebrate the consistency of root vegetables (both in how they cook and in how they store!) but also to begin to crack the door to visions of fresh spring veggies. This past week we **started** our first round of spring starts!

Nat spent the day in the 4-Season green house getting our first round of seeds in the ground. In our germination chamber right now are barely reaching for the sun green onions, Asian greens, rainbow kale, and lettuce heads. They are still tucked into their moist warm beds of soil but working furiously towards the surface. These will spend the next 6 weeks growing and strengthening and in mid-March we will plant them in the hoops. With any luck, some of these will be ready for the May CSA!

Imagine, crisp lettuce in May. Oh what a joy. That joy is unique to eating seasonally! 

These starts are also the beginnings of our Summer CSA and this upcoming week we are starting all the peas for the Summer CSA and all of our alliums for 2022. This includes shallots, red and yellow onions, and leeks. These alliums will be part of our late summer and fall CSA shares and also the foundation of our next winter’s CSA. (Think about it, the onions in your winter CSA were started this time last year!) 

If you haven’t purchased your 20-week Summer CSA, now is the time! Spaces are filling fast and we will be sold out before you know it. 

Check out our Summer CSA webpage for more information

Your February CSA share

This is a Sunday estimation of what we will be harvesting and packing this week. We have been keeping an eye on the weather, the hoops, and our storage crops and have a pretty good idea of what is out there and ready to be harvested and packed, but we won’t really know until we start packing. Consider this a very educated guess.

This month, we think your Vegetable CSA share will include:

Golden Beets
Winter Sweet Kabocha Squash
Siberian Kale

Purple Viking Potatoes


Just a little reminder that we harvest and pack boxes after this email goes out. While we **THINK** the above vegetables will be what your box will hold, we make **NO GUARANTEES** about the box contents until we hand it over to you. Then we guarantee you will enjoy organic, nutrient dense goodness until the vegetables are gone!

Our Meat share this month includes:
and ground beef, of course 🙂

This week we will be breaking into a whole butchered and wrapped hog. Your share will include 3 ground beef and the rest will consist of a random assortment of cuts from the hog not including ham steaks and Italian sausage. We are so excited that a butcher date and our pig pasture lined up to share this bounty with you!!!

Recipe Roundup

I thought I would focus the recipe roundup on Celeriac today in celebration of this gnarly, different, new to most people root.

Celeriac, also known as Celery Root, is probably one of the weirder and more unappetizing looking root vegetables you will find in in our Winter CSA. But don’t be deterred. Celeriac’s flavor is as unique as it looks: earthy, fresh, clean, and softer on the taste buds than fresh celery. 

Celery and celeriac are actually the same plant, but celeriac has been developed over time to emphasize its root ball at the expense of its stalks. When picked, it has very stringy and tough celery shoots which are trimmed away as the root is prepared for storage. Celeriac is one of the longer growing roots on the farm. We plant it as soon as we plant the 25-acre and harvest it in the fall for storage. It stores exceptionally well. 

Europeans have known about celeriac for a long time and when I go searching for recipe ideas, I often find great options from the BBC and other European sources. Looking under #celeriac in instagram brings a ton of Michelin Star restaurants and how they are very artfully using celeriac (think emulsions and foams and the like). If you don’t want to get that crazy, consider adding celeriac to soups, roasted vegetables, and your next round of mashed potatoes. Additionally, it is great in salads raw or blanched. 

Here are a few tips from Deborah Madison’sVegetable Literacy:
  • To prevent discoloration of celeriac while you are preparing it, make sure you put it in water with a little lemon juice after peeling and chopping it.
  • Celeriac pairs well with potatoes because the potato has a mild flavor allowing you to still taste the soft celery flavor.
  • To prepare celeriac, soak in water and then scrub. (It retains a lot of soil in its skin.) Cut the top and bottom of the celeriac off and run your knife down the root. Flip over and repeat making sure you remove all the skin. If, when you start chopping up your celeriac, it has split in the middle and has some crevasses, that is fine, just trim them out. 
  • Keep your skins and the trimmings! Add them to your bag of frozen onion peels and carrot tops to put in your next stock. It will add a hint of celery that you might not get otherwise.
Celery Root and Potato Puree
(from Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone)

2 pounds potatoes, peeled
1 celery root, about 1 pound, peeled
Salt and freshly milled pepper
About 1/2 cup milk, cream, or water, warmed
4 to 8 tablespoons butter cooking


  1. Cut the vegetables separately into large pieces. Put each in a saucepan, add cold water to cover and 1/2 teaspoon salt, and bring to a boil. Simmer until tender, about 15 minutes for the potatoes, 10 minutes for the celery root. Drain, reserving the broth for thinning or to use in making soup.
  2. Pass them together through a food mill or mash by hand, adding warm liquid to thin the purée as you go. Season with salt and pepper and stir in butter.
  3. Variations: Flavor the puree with Whole Roasted Garlic, or include other vegetables in the mix-turnips, parsnips, and fennel are all delicious. Instead of butter, finish the puree with walnut oil or roasted hazelnut oil. Stir in finely chopped parsley or watercress just before serving.
Beef meatballs with lemon and celery root
(Ottolenghi Simple, Yotam Ottolenghi)
I’m a sucker for sending you ground beef recipes. Here is one that uses Celeriac and ground beef! I made this last winter and remember it being slightly fussier then expected, but delicious and warming in that comfort food sort of way.


1 lb ground beef
1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 cups fresh white breadcrumbs (from about 4 slices, crusts removed)
1 cup parsley, chopped, plus extra to garnish
1 large egg, beaten
3/4 tsp ground allspice
salt and black pepper
2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium celery root, peeled, quartered, then each quarter cut crosswise into 1/2-inch/I cm slices (4 cups/400g)
3 garlic cloves, minced
½ tsp ground turmeric
1 ½ tsp fennel seeds, lightly crushed
1 tsp sweet smoked paprika
2 cups chicken stock
3 ½ tbsp lemon juice

These are lovely as they are, served with some couscous or rice to soak up the juices, or with a little bit of Greek-style yogurt on the side. The dish can be made a day in advance and kept in the fridge. Reheat before serving.

  1. Put the beef, onion, breadcrumbs, parsley, egg, allspice, ½ tsp salt, and some black pepper into a large bowl. Using your hands, mix well, then form into about 20 balls. Each ball should weigh about 1/2 oz.
  2. Put the oil into a large sauté pan with a lid and place over high heat. Add the meatballs and sear for about 5 minutes, turning so that all sides are golden brown. Transfer the meatballs to a separate plate and add the celery root, garlic, turmeric, fennel, and paprika to the pan. Cook over high heat, stirring, for 2 minutes, until the garlic has taken on a bit of color and the spices smell aromatic. Return the meatballs to the pan and add the stock, lemon juice, ½ tsp salt, and some black pepper. Bring to a boil, then simmer gently over medium-low heat, covered, for 30 minutes. Remove the lid and leave to bubble away for about 10 minutes, for the sauce to thicken up.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat and allow it to sit for 5 or 10 minutes. Serve, along with a final sprinkle of parsley.
Celery Root and Potato Gratin
(from Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone)

1 garlic clove and butter for the dish
I celery root, about 1 pound, scrubbed
I pound potatoes
½ cup cream
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Salt and freshly milled pepper
I cup grated Gruyère

A BROTH made from the celery root trimmings replaces half of the cream usually found in potato gratins without loss of flavor or texture. Celery root has a haunting flavor that always reminds me of truffles, which are an excellent addition should you be so lucky. (If I were using truffles, I would use all cream in the dish.)

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Rub a 2-quart gratin dish with the garlic and then with butter. Peel the celery root and put the parings in a 3-quart saucepan with 3 cups water and whatever remains of the garlic. Set a steamer over the top and bring to a boil.
  2. Quarter the root, then slice it 1/4 inch thick. Steam for 5 minutes and remove to a large bowl.
  3. Peel the potatoes, slice them into thin rounds, and steam for 5 minutes or until tender, then add them to the celery root. Strain the cooking liquid, measure 1/4 cups, and mix it with the cream and mustard. Pour it over the vegetables and toss well. Season with 3/4 teaspoon salt and pepper to taste. Transfer the vegetables to the gratin dish, smooth them out, and cover with the cheese. Bake until bubbling and browned on top, about 30 minutes.
Celery Root Salad with kale, apples, walnuts and lemon vinaigrette
(from Abra Berens’ Ruffage)

2 celery roots, ends trimmed, peeled, cut into matchsticks
1 bunch kale mid ribs stripped, cut into ribbons and massaged
2 tart apples, cut into thin half moons
1 cup toasted walnuts, roughly chopped or crumbled
1/2 cup lemon vinaigrette
salt and pepper


  1. Toss all the ingredients together. Adjust seasonings and vinaigrette amount as needed.