Here we are, week #2 and almost the beginning of July. How did that happen? How is the 4th of July next week? It’s truly crazy how fast time goes, especially the summertime in Minnesota. Just a friendly reminder that shares will be delivered next Tuesday, July 5th. There is no change in schedule due to the holiday.


The share today is full of things that are great for quick and easy meals, my favorite! Let’s dive in and take a look at what Week #2 has to offer.


Strawberries: What a fun little surprise we were able to pull off for you all! I got a call at about 7am on Monday morning asking if it was ok to add them to the share this week as there were more in the field than they originally anticipated. Of course, I said yes. These are the best of the season so far. Sweet and juicy, perfect for eating plain or adding to the top of ice cream. Personally, I like to rinse mine off, let them dry flat on a paper towel or tea towel, slice and store in a Tupperware in the fridge. Truthfully, they will likely be gone by Wednesday afternoon, so they won’t last long. Please remember that these berries are extra fragile and NOTHING like berries you will purchase in the grocery store. They are soft and do NOT have the shelf life of store-bought berries. Please, please, please do not keep them in the containers over night as this reduces the shelf life even more.


Garlic Scapes: What a wonderful aroma these offer. I love to add these to quick stir fries I make throughout the week or even scrambled eggs in the morning. The flavor is mild, making them perfect when you want just a little extra something. To use them, simply rinse and chop into small pieces. I cheat and use my kitchen scissors to cut them as I go-it works great! A favorite of mine when I’m feeling a bit more decadent is this Garlic Scape Carbonara. It’s super easy, but feels like you are getting a fancy meal. Pair it with a fresh salad and you have a wonderful dinner!


Grape Tomatoes: Another helping, but larger than last time of grape tomatoes! Enjoy them on top of salads or try something new by roasting them. I love to roast a handful of grape tomatoes in the oven and place them on top of lightly sauteed zucchini noodles. Add in some garlic scapes, a protein, and sprinkle with a dash of cheese for a super quick and easy weeknight dinner!


Cilantro: Family Share Only– A fresh bunch of cilantro that will be perfect for topping tacos, making cilantro lime rice, or turning into a fresh salsa with the grape tomatoes. Tacos of various styles are a staple in my household each week, so this fresh bunch of cilantro will be chopped up and placed in an airtight container so I can grab it and sprinkle it on the top of them later in the week.


Romaine: Great for salads or sandwiches, romaine is super versatile while offering a bit more texture. Fresh romaine on a BLT is a summertime classic that I definitely look forward to this week. Remember, fresh, locally grown lettuce has a longer shelf life than store-bought lettuce, so it’s ok if you can’t get to it right away!


Leaf Lettuce: Family Share Only- Rinsed and dried, this will be turned into a giant salad or two or three. When I say giant, I mean giant. No small salad bowls. There is nothing worse in my mind than not being able to mix the greens and salad toppings all together without having them all spill out. So, how do I make it you ask? When I want a big salad, I use a mixing bowl. Yes, I said that. I use a mixing bowl, so I have plenty of space to mix it all together without having any of the contents spill out onto the counter or table. Give it a try and I bet you won’t go back.


Dinosaur Kale: Darker in color than the curly kale last week, this bunch offers a slightly different texture. I’m a fan of keeping it simple and just tearing the leaves off the stem, sautéing in a bit of olive oil and sprinkling with some garlic salt. A member did share this Instant Pot Kale Lentil Soup recipe that looks amazing. She said her kids even loved it too, so it was a win-win!


Slicing Cucumbers: These are directly from the high tunnels, no wax, and oh so fresh. They don’t have a tough and bitter skin like the shipped in cucumbers at the store have. Added to salads, sandwiches, and eaten alone as a snack, these won’t last too long. You can always give a creamy cucumber salad a try as well, that is definitely a great summer treat.


Zucchini: I get a lot of emails in a week, but I had never received so many emails about zucchini as I did last week! So many of you loved it and mentioned how fresh and tender it was, so we included it again for you today. Mine typically gets turned into noodles, or if I’m a bit lazy, I simply slice it and use it in a quick stir fry. The best thing about this is you can truly use it in so many ways. Marinate it and eat it raw in a salad, cut it up and stick it on the grill, sauté it, use it for baking, the uses are endless.


Spinach: Remember that if your spinach looks wilted, stick it in a bowl of ice water for about 30 minutes with a bit of salt. Rinse, dry, and it should be good to go again! Enjoy this in salads, wilted with a bit of butter and salt, or in smoothies. Spinach doesn’t last long in my house as it gets used daily in morning smoothies. It adds some great nutritional value without altering the flavor, the color is a totally different story.


Honey: A jar of honey from the farm, it’s a perfect topping for ice cream or adding to a peanut butter sandwich. Use it now or save it for later, it lasts basically forever. Locally produced honey is also helpful for seasonal allergies, so if you struggle, try eating some honey on a regular basis and see if it helps!


There you have it, Week #2. Nothing fancy, but a few suggestions on how to enjoy your box this week. As we head into a holiday weekend, sometimes we can get overwhelmed with everything to do. Take a few moments as you unpack your box tonight to simply prep some ingredients. Wash your greens (lettuces, spinach, kale), then when you need them, they are ready to go. You can even remove the kale leaves from the stem and place them in a Ziplock bag so they are completely ready for use when you want to use them. I find that if I spend about 30 minutes in the kitchen on a Tuesday night prepping a few of the vegetables from the box, I am able to get through everything, and I am much happier the rest of the week as I can simply grab and go, or grab and cook without the prep work. Give it a try!


I hope you all have a safe and happy 4th of July!