Veggies We Harvested This Week: June 26, 2023

Every member’s customized Market Box is unique so we hope you will take advantage more varieties of vegetables as you get comfortable with all the great organic produce we are offering.  Use our A to Z Vegetable Guide to help use and store your veggies. Storage tips and recipes below. 

Willow Haven Farm Market Box CSA Harvest Highlights, June 26, 2023 2

Last Chance to Sign up!


First Ever FRIDAY Pizza Night on the Deck


Friday June 30. 5 – 8 pm. 
Details Here!

Your experience includes the ambience of the farm, seating on our beautiful deck overlooking our wooded valley, watching your pizza cook in the wood fired brick oven, chatting with the farmer, optional walk on our grounds, and a visit to our artisan farm store.

We’ll provide pizza, appetizer plate, herbal teas, and water. BYOB is allowed. Other items will be available for cash purchase. Don’t miss it!

Reserve Now


Farm Tour and Grill Out

Saturday July 1. 11 am – 3 pm.

Reuben’s Farm Tours are not to be missed.  Great for children, food lovers, animal lovers, gardeners and aspiring farmers.

On this Holiday weekend, join us for the best picnic lunch you can imagine. Enjoy Grilled Grass Fed burgers, farm made brioche buns, and delicious salads on the deck either before or after your farm tour.

Come to Family Day at the Farm THIS Saturday July 1. ,

I’m coming


Storage & Usage Tips

As I unpack my vegetables from my market box I share extra tips and suggestions that you won’t want to miss.

Why is the lettuce a little muddy this week?
What is different about Purple Kohlrabi?
Why does the type of pectin in Willow Haven Farm preserves affect the sugar vs. fruit content?

All this and more in my unboxing video:

What to use first: asparagus, broccoli, dill, lettuce, snap peas, microgreens, radish greens and cherries.

Finished for the season: Asparagus, garlic scapes,

Done for now but will return: Bok choy, Cauliflower, Radish

BasilCinnamon/Purple Basil – store as with all herbs. Basil doesn’t like being in a bag in the fridge for very long. A fragrant basil with reminiscent of cinnamon, purple Basil can be used any way Italian basil can – even Pesto. Purple Pesto will be unique in color but finds it’s place in pasta quite easily. 

Purple Basil w green basil in background

Broccoliis a “temperamental” crop to grow successfully so we are happy to have it for you this week – Farmer Leroy does a great job! Broccoli should be kept unwashed, trimming only the large leaves (save leaves for DIY veggie stock). Stored in a perforated, plastic bag in the refrigerator, it will keep fresh for several days. To prepare, first rinse the broccoli, if necessary, soak upside down in cold, salted water. Broccoli is best when quickly steamed or stir-fried. Overcooking enhances its strong flavor and aroma, dulls the color, and leaches out nutrients. It should be cooked a minimum amount of time until tender, but still crisp. Although raw broccoli is often served as crudités with dip, a quick blanching will both tenderize and reduce the strong flavor.  Broccoli will take 8-15 minutes to steam, 4-8 to blanch.  Test for doneness by piercing the stalks with a knife point.  The knife will pierce easily, but the broccoli should remain crunchy.  If you plan to use it later, cool by plunging immediately in cold water.  Drain and pat dry. Steam or blanch broccoli before sautéing or stir-frying. Store in plastic bag in the hydrator drawer of fridge and eat within a few days. Check out Stop Throwing Away Your Broccoli Stems for more ideas.

Cabbage – this is a green summer cabbage, which means that it is great for any cabbage recipe but it is not meant for long term storage like fall cabbages. It does store well wrapped in plastic in the crisper drawer or in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator.  Two recipes for coleslaw: Creamy version, vinegar version – see this post.  You can also make a jar of summer sauerkraut – see below. Here is a Stir Fry Recipe to use your cabbage and peas. This is recipe I mention in the video: Indian Cabbage with Peas

Cauliflower – can be roasted steamed, sautéed, or even enjoyed raw in salads. Use as a low-carb substitute for rice or mashed potatoes, or an ingredient in soups, stir-fries, and as a pizza crust alternative. Store cauliflower in a plastic bag or airtight container in the refrigerator. Whole heads can last up to a week, while cut or florets should be used within 2-3 days for optimal freshness. Ensure it is dry and not exposed to excess moisture to avoid spoilage. ROASTED cauliflower turned my family into cauliflower LOVERS, rather than haters. This is a favorite recipe: Roasted Cauliflower with Pasta and Lemon Zest. I even make this recipe without the  pasta.

Chamomile is a flowering herb to enjoy both to look at and to consume. Store in a vase as you would any flowers and change the water daily to keep fresh.  The easiest and most common use is for a relaxing tea, often found in products to use before bed.  Here are some ideas to get you started: Five Delicious Ways to Indulge in Fresh Chamomile.

chamomile bunches

Chinese/Napa Cabbage – Can be eaten raw in salads or cooked any way you would use traditional cabbage. It tastes excellent in Asian-flavored dishes, especially stir frys. Stir fried Chinese Cabbage Recipe Store the napa cabbage wrapped in a damp towel or plastic bag in crisper drawer. The napa cabbage will stay fresh for up to two weeks. Try this Napa Cabbage Salad. 

Collard Greens – To store, wrap the greens, unwashed, in damp paper towels until you are ready to use them. Keep the wrapped greens in an open plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to about 5 days. When you are ready to cook the greens, you’ll need to wash them. To freeze: Wash the leaves, cut off the woody stems, blanch in boiling water for three minutes and chill in ice water. Dry the leaves, pack into freezer bags and freeze. Green Cube Method guide  Recipes: Sautéed Collard GreensCollard Green and Basil Pesto: Two Versions

Dill – like all herbs, will not last long once picked. Place upright in a glass of water in the fridge or on your kitchen counter. Dill pairs well with potatoes, cucumbers, and green beans. If you cannot use the dill this week, preserve the herb by tying a string around the bunch and hanging it upside down in a well-ventilated and dry area. When it’s dry, crumble and store in an airtight container. Making a dill dressing to use on salad, dip, grilled veggies or meats also preserves the dill longer.

Kale – Lacinato or Red Russian kale. Store in a loosely sealed plastic bag in the crisper drawer for 7-10 days. Lacinato is dark green, narrow bumpy leaves. Red Russian kale has red/purple stems and a more tender, flatter leaf. To freeze, wash and chop into small pieces and place in a freezer bag. This would be delicious used in the winter in a potato soup or vegetable stir fry.  I love it sauteed with garlic and olive oil until bright green and tender. Add Kielbasa to your cart and try this Kale and Kielbasa Soup. 

Kohlrabi – green or purple variety. Cut off leaves and store separately in a plastic bag – you can use them like kale!  Most likely you will receive purple kohlrabi which is more often used as a cooked vegetable. Green varieties are very suitable raw and may be cooked as well.  Store bulbs in a bag or wrap in a moist paper towel. Both parts should be stored in the vegetable drawer of the refrigerator.  This post has great info and suggestions for Kohlrabi.  Other CSA members have enjoyed their kohlrabi grilled, roasted and spiralized into noodles. See below for a kohlrabi salad recipe.

Lettuce, Butterhead – this variety is a cut leaf lettuce. Store it properly to last all week. How to Store Lettuce. Try a DIY Salad Dressing – see below.

MicrogreensRefrigerate immediately. Keep bag sealed. Fold down to remove most air. Put in coldest part of refrigerator. Often, a bottom shelf. Can be frozen to add later to soups and other meals.  Check out Emanuel Farm Powdered Microgreens for longer term shelf life. They are a tasty, nutrient-rich boost for shakes, smoothies and meals and a great seasoning for adding flavor to dishes and dips. All our micro greens are from Emanuel Farms. I love putting microgreens on my egg and cheese english muffin sandwiches.

Mushroom, Portobello & Cremini – These two mushrooms are the same variety but are harvested at different sizes. Store in a paper bag and refrigerate in the main section of the fridge with a dry paper towel to absorb excess moisture. Alternatively, mushrooms can be briefly sautéed or blanched before freezing to extend their shelf life for up to 3 months. ALERT: these will be out of stock for the foreseeable future.  The higher ups at the mushroom farm have decided that they don’t want to sell “small orders” of mushrooms to us. If you’ve enjoyed the organic mushrooms, you can let the local Giorgio Farm know by contacting Jenn Emerich, Giorgio Fresh Company Customer Service, Phone Direct Dial: 610-916-8376,  Email:

Did you know we live in the Mushroom Capital of the World? That means that big mushroom farms in our region are exporting all over the world.

Shiitake mushroom

Mushrooms, Shiitake – But Emmanuel Farm successfully grew these Shiitakes to offer you. Add them to stir-fries, risottos, soups, or use them as a filling for tacos. They are also great for Asian-inspired noodle dishes or as a base for stuffed mushrooms. Enjoy their earthy flavor and meaty texture in these and other creative recipes.

Rhubarb – To store rhubarb, remove any leaves and trim the ends, then place the stalks in a plastic bag and store them in the refrigerator for up to a week. For usage, rhubarb can be cooked into compotes, jams, pies, or used in baked goods, providing a tart flavor that pairs well with sweet ingredients like strawberries or apples. Try making this Rhubarb Sauce or this pie version of a rhubarb crisp – Rhubarb Oatmeal Pie. Make your own strawberry rhubarb preserves or add our Willow Haven Preserves to your Market Box next week.

Scallions – Green onions, or scallions, can be wrapped in damp towel or placed in plastic bag in the crisper drawer of the fridge. Chop and use raw or cooked anyway you would use a bulb onion. The whole of the green onion can be eaten, stalks and all.

Snap Peascan be enjoyed raw in salads or stir-fried for a crunchy texture. They are a versatile vegetable that pairs well with various dishes and cuisines. Store snow peas in a perforated plastic bag or breathable container in the refrigerator’s crisper drawer for up to 3-4 days to maintain their freshness and crispness.  Snow Peas and Garlic is a great way to use your garlic scapes and scallions with your peas – you can use snap peas instead of snow peas. Here is a Stir Fry Recipe to use your cabbage and peas. 

bins of zucchini, green and yellow summer squash

Summer Squash green summer squash is often called zucchini but there are many varieties of various green and yellow that are interchangeable in recipes. Try a simple sautee or stir fry. Simple Sauteed Zucchini Squash Recipe.



Farm Food Highlights

FRUIT: Blueberriesare low-calorie berries packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, including vitamin C, vitamin K, and anthocyanins. They offer immune support, contribute to bone health, and provide antioxidant protection. Storage: Keep blueberries unwashed in a covered container or loosely closed plastic bag in the refrigerator. Avoid washing them until just before use to prevent moisture. Fresh blueberries can last up to a week when properly stored. Usage: Enjoy blueberries fresh as a snack or add them to cereals, yogurt, smoothies, salads, and desserts. They can be used in baking or incorporated into savory dishes. Frozen blueberries are a convenient option for year-round use.

Blueberries close up

Should you try a vinegar rinse for keeping blueberries longer?  Rinsing blueberries with a diluted vinegar solution may help prolong their shelf life by reducing mold growth. The acetic acid in vinegar can act as a natural disinfectant and inhibit the growth of certain bacteria and fungi. However, it’s important to note that the effect may vary, and individual results may differ. Proper storage in the refrigerator, avoiding moisture, and consuming them within a week of purchase are still crucial factors in extending the freshness of blueberries. Directions: If desired, mix one part vinegar with three parts water, then gently rinse the blueberries in the solution. Rinse them again with plain water and pat them dry before consuming or storing

FLINT HILL CHEESE: Aged Manchego or Smoked Manchego are still quite popular choices this week. How are you using them?

BREAD: Brioche   This braided loaf is light and buttery, made with farm fresh eggs and butter that make it melt in your mouth. No need for any topper but who can resist adding cheese or a smudge of Strawberry Rhubarb Preserves. Elevate your french toast or your grilled cheese sandwich with this delightful bread.

farm made braided brioche

Raw Cheese: Hilltop Farm  raises all their jersey cows on pasture and we’ve seen them! Their cheese room is stocked with long blocks of classic and delicious flavors of familiar cheeses but with the added health benefits of high quality, grass fed milk that isn’t heated higher than 110 degrees so that the natural enzymes remain. Cheddar Garlic and Colby are best sellers!

WILD FOR SALMON: Farm members are enjoying delicious meals with  Coho Salmon portions baked with dill, kale and cauliflower rice.

Organic Chia and Quinoa Chips are perfect for any diet. Try them with Fromage and Lemon Ginger Marmalade.

MEAL SUGGESTION: Melt Cheddar Garlic cheese onto your Angus Chip Steak and enjoy on a toasted slice of brioche!Summer Squash Zucchini WHF ebook

If you didn’t get these in your farm share this week, look for them next time.

Experiment with Pesto

Have you noticed that almost any leafy green can be used to make pesto?  While basil is the most popular herb, I’ve seen recipes for using kale, collards, and mustard greens.

Here is a handy guide to custom blend your own pesto using the ingredients you have at hand.

DIY Pesto Formula


Veggie E-Books

Download these collections of tips and recipes for each veggie. You’ll use these as a reference throughout the season.

Summer Squash & Zucchini E-book


Farmer Reuben’s Field Update

Part of getting ready for pizza night is finishing a long overdue project.

Reuben mixing concrete by the brick oven

The concrete pad by the brick oven has been broken up for the past two years. This will give our baker a boost in reaching the oven – four more inches in fact.

We’ll keep farming for you!

Reuben and Tessa DeMaster
Willow Haven Farm


Don’t Miss Your Farm Events:

Farm Tour and Grill Out

Saturday July 1. 11 am – 3 pm.

Reuben’s Farm Tours are not to be missed.  Great for children, food lovers, animal lovers, gardeners and aspiring farmers.

On this Holiday weekend, join us for the best picnic lunch you can imagine. Enjoy Grilled Grass Fed burgers, farm made brioche buns, and delicious salads on the deck either before or after your farm tour.

Come to Family Day at the Farm THIS Saturday July 1. 

I’m coming


Market Box Value!

Five of our Top Tips to get the most value out of your Market Box and enjoy the most food you’ll love. Read Here.

Your List of What to Return:

Please return the packaging we sent you for your last delivery.  Here’s how and what exactly we’ll take back: Read Here.


We’ll Keep Farming for You!