Spring Greens: Swiss Chard

What is it? It’s a beet, minus the root. But unlike regular beets, chard produces big, tender leaves and crunchy stalks. The leaves are a bit milder than spinach but with the same texture. They are mild, sweet, earthy and just slightly bitter. The stalks remind me of celery with a sweet taste similar to beets.

To prepare, I simply rough chop the leaves and finely chop the thicker stalks so that the two parts cook in about the same time. Steam or sauté and toss with butter or olive oil, lemon, garlic, salt and pepper. I like the contrast between the tender leaves and the crunchier stalks. Serve this as a side or toss with cooked pasta and Parmesan cheese. Yum!

We will have Swiss Chard at Empire Market and Webb City Farmers Market for you on Saturday. Plus our lettuce mix, market mix, kale, green leaf and romaine lettuce, spinach, mixed petite greens, cilantro, parsley and mint. All the microgreens and spring greens! Plus beautiful French Breakfast Radishes.

You can pre-order from our store here or Empire’s Curbside Pickup here. Call or text me too, 970-980-9395.

Be well!

P.S. If you know people you think would be interested in news from our farm, please forward this to them and encourage them to sign up at Subscribe Here.

Ginger Update

The ginger and turmeric is doing so much better this year! Sprouts are up and I’m looking forward to transplanting them into the gardens and high tunnels. Last year was so disappointing. We’re not sure if it was the seed source or just the season but we’re off to a good start this year.

We sprout them on heat at 85 degrees to simulate their tropical origins. This gives us a big head start on the growing season.

We are at Empire Market and Webb City Farmers Market this Saturday.

It’s Paris Week at Empire Market. What’s better than Paris in the Springtime? And you don’t even have to leave town! Come join us in our 3rd annual celebration of all things Parisian! Freshly baked macarons, Baguettes, Croissants, La Creperie de Marché, Cocktails and Coffee, Paris-themed Photo Booth, And much more fun! Oui, oui, oui! Fun, fun, fun!

We’re bringing lettuce mix, market mix, baby kale, spinach, petite swiss chard, cilantro, mint in clamshells, radishes, and all the microgreens. And, Aloe Vera plants! Plus bonus! The hens are laying! Text me to reserve your farm fresh eggs! 970-980-9395.

Be well, stay well!

P.S. If you know people you think would be interested in news from our farm, please forward this to them and encourage them to sign up at Subscribe Here.

Spring Farming Adventures

It seems like there is always a crazy dip to freezing temperatures right around the time we are ready to transplant tomatoes. We put them out to harden off anyway. Doug tucked the tomato seedlings under heavy row cover last night in preparation for the hard freeze. We were expecting a low of 31. When I looked at the the thermometer this morning, it registered 25 degrees!

Yikes! Did they freeze? That would set us back 6 weeks!

I was very happy to see that the plants were fine. Thank goodness! We’re not out of the woods yet though, there are 4 more weeks until our last frost date. Spring, it’s a raucous adventure.

Tomato plants hardening off prior to transplanting.

We’re bringing more spring greens to market on Saturday. Our lettuce mix, market mix, mixed greens, baby kale and microgreens.

See you there!


Welcome Spring!

The spring thunderstorms bring such beauty and renewal to the farm. We’re busy prepping beds, seeding and transplanting in preparation for a bountiful harvest. While also herding baby goats, lol! I love this photo of a corner of the garden that our son Stephen took.

We will be at Webb City Farmer’s Market and Joplin Empire Market tomorrow. We’ll have our mighty microgreens, mixed greens, spring lettuce mix, sweet baby kale, spinach and our popular Market Mix. Stephen will have a very limited supply of radishes and beets at Empire Market, the first of the spring season.

As we shift our total focus to our market gardening, we won’t be offering Bierocks at Empire Market. Look for them again later this fall. What a treat they have been and Thank You!

Stay safe and well and we hope to see you all at the market soon!


Kale Yeah Baby!

It’s greens season here at OakWoods Farm and kale is one of our favorite superfoods. It’s one of the most nutrient dense foods on the planet. Kale is loaded with all sorts of beneficial compounds and it works well in dishes from salad to soup. And locally harvested kale is the best! Come visit us this weekend and pick up a bunch at Webb City Farmers Market and Joplin Empire Market.

Here are some of my favorite ways to prepare kale:

Kale Chips. Try lightly crushing the chips and adding them to popcorn. Our farmhouse Cayenne Chili Pepper Salt adds a tasty kick to this recipe. https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/kale-chips-51186450

Kale Smoothie. You can be as creative as you want with smoothie ingredients. Green smoothies provide fiber, calcium and vitamins A, C and K, as well as powerful phytochemicals. I like to add a scoop of protein powder. https://www.thekitchn.com/kale-smoothie-recipe-23059434

Kale Salad. Substitute your favorite apple and you can use parmesan instead of pecorino. https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchen/kale-and-apple-salad-recipe-2112013

Kale Pesto With Pasta. Use any pasta you like. Mama JoJo’s has fresh pasta at Webb City Farmers Market. https://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/kale-pesto-with-whole-wheat-pasta

Ricotta, Kale & Mushroom Toast. I like to top this toast with a fried egg. Mushrooms are available from Salt and Light Farmhouse and Mo’ Mushrooms. https://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/ricotta-kale-and-mushroom-toast

And of course, Zuppa Toscana. Pick up a hearty bread to dip in the soup from The Bearded Baker or Farmhouse Bakery at Empire Market or from Reddings Mill Bread Company at Webb City Farmers Market. https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchen/copycat-zuppa-toscana-5565099.

– Farmer Karen

OakWoods Farm 2017 Summer CSA

Welcome Back Current Members & Welcome New Members

CSA deliveries begin this Friday May 5 and Saturday May 6.
The season runs 26 weeks, May 5 – October 27.

The high tunnels have stayed pretty high and dry over the last couple of weeks but it’s a different story in the gardens. We have plenty of spring greens and the farm is green and beautiful. On the other hand, the wet weather has delayed seeding and transplanting but we’re always optimistic that sunshine and dry weather will return over the next several days to dry things up a bit. Here’s a reminder of the CSA pick up locations and times:

  • Home delivery Friday afternoons
  • Oak Street Natural Market Fridays 4-5:30
  • Webb City Farmers Market Saturdays 9-12:00
  • Here at the farm Friday afternoon and Saturday

Looking forward to connecting with you! Thank you for supporting our farm and local food systems. Again, we sincerely appreciate the trust you have placed with us as a supplier of your fresh produce.


July 1 Pick Up: Week 9 of 26 Weeks

Dear Friends,

It’s week 9 of 26 weeks. And as usual this time of year the weeds have kicked our butts! While rescuing the herb garden this week from weeds, I was pleasantly surprised to discover some really nice basil plants. So you will have basil to enjoy with your tomatoes this week. We love fresh Caprese Salad, alternating slices of tomatoes and mozzarella, adding a basil leaf between each, on a large, shallow platter. Drizzle the salad with extra-virgin olive oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Try it with Terrell Creek Artisan Goat Cheese available locally at Webb City Farmers Market and Oak Street Natural Market. Bon Appetite!

Other than weeding, we are seeding, transplanting, harvesting & trying to stay on top of the daily & weekly tasks of running the farm. And the rains are welcomed!

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Here’s what’s in the box this week

Partial Shares: Assorted Tomatoes: Cherokee Purple, Primo Red, Carolina Gold, Siberian Kale, Carrots, Basil, Assorted Summer Squash, Marketmore Cucumber, Baby Tendersweet Cabbage

Full Shares: Assorted Tomatoes: Cherokee Purple, Primo Red, Carolina Gold, and Sungold Cherry Tomatoes, Siberian or Dwarf Blue Kale, Carrots, Basil, Sweetmint (think 4th of July Mojitos), Assorted Squash, Marketmore Cucumbers, Baby Tendersweet Cabbage, Bananna Peppers, Garden Salsa Peppers

Pick Up Locations
Home Delivery – every Friday afternoonOak Street Natural Market – every Friday 4-6

Webb City Farmers Market – every Saturday 9-12

At the farm – every Saturday 1-5 Let Karen know if you want to pick up at the farm on Friday.

Remember, if you are unable to pick up your box on delivery day, please make alternate arrangements for your produce ahead of time. You can ask someone else to pick up your box for you, you can ask the farm not to make a box for you that week, or you can donate your box and we will get it to a local food pantry. Just let us know. Call Karen at 970-980-9395.

Thank you! We are proud to be your Farmers! Have a great 4th of July!

Karen & Doug

What to do with that Rhubarb continued…

Dear Members,

It’s week 6 of 26 weeks. We’ve been crazy busy the past couple of weeks with transplanting, weeding, weeding, weeding, harvesting & trying to stay on top of the daily & weekly tasks of running the farm.  The weather has been wonderful although we experienced a heat index temperature of 112 this week! Tomatoes are ripening though, get ready… And did  mention weeding?

Here’s what’s in the box this week

Partial Shares: Roxanne Radish, Garden Sage, Pea Shoots, Rhubarb, Siberian Kale, Strawberries

Full Shares: Roxanne Radish, Garden Sage, Spinach, Rhubarb, Bridger Onion, Siberian Kale, Rainbow Swiss Chard, Strawberries, Cherry or Primo Red Tomatoes

Members Ron & Mary are avid and creative cooks and I’m always delighted with what they have put together from their box of produce. Here is one of their suggestions for the rhubarb https://oakwoodsfarm.com/2016/06/10/what-to-do-with-that-rhubarb/. It’s our once per year sweet delight!

Here’s a link to Thrive Market for Honey Macerated Strawberries with Yogurt. Keep in mind that we are growing ginger just for you! You can freeze your berries to use when the baby ginger is mature.  https://thrivemarket.com/blog/honey-macerated-strawberries-with-yogurt-recipe?uid=4958047&uaexptime=1780252632&uatoken=22f18ca5d8b53480d0c84c3e1bda7df8f67deb50a0b48a183f98d37d75f50fbe&utm_content=notebook&utm_medium=promo&utm_campaign=2016_06_10_Notebook_Members&utm_source=sailthru

Pick Up Locations
Home Delivery – every Friday afternoon
Oak Street Natural Market – every Friday 4-6

Webb City Farmers Market – every Saturday 9-12

At the farm – every Saturday 1-5 Let Karen know if you want to pick up at the farm on Friday.

Farm Fresh Feasts

Kirsten Madaus, worm wrangler, wife, mother, Community Supported Agriculture-loving pizza paparazzi at Farm Fresh Feasts, has spent the last 6 years feeding her family from farm shares in 2 states. She realized that one of the barriers to folks continuing with a farm share was a lack of knowledge about new-to-us produce. She started her site in 2012 to provide practical support to her my fellow local eaters.

She shares several recipes each week featuring seasonal ingredients, and maintains a Visual Recipe Index by Ingredient (broken up into different types of produce). She receives submissions from fellow food bloggers to bolster her own recipes so that, for example, she got more than 50 recipes using beets, nearly 50 recipes using garlic scapes, and more than a dozen recipes for kohlrabi. There are recipes for all types of diets.

Her website is free to use, but she does display ads which is how she pays for the site and the software to host the recipe index.

Here is a link to Kirsten’s site: http://www.farmfreshfeasts.com