Weekly Newsletter 07-09-13

Local Bin: Tomatoes, Canary melon, peaches, Japanese/Mini eggplant mix, yellow squash, red & brown bell peppers, cucumbers, black-eyed peas

Local Mini Bin: Canary melon, cucumber, yellow squash, black eyed peas, eggplant

We want you to get the most out of your Veggie Bin. Utilize every tasty bite with some of these recipes which feature every item you’ll get this week.

Recipes for This Week’s Bin

Recipe Note: Some recipes may call for more or less produce than you receive. We feature recipes which can be doubled or halved if necessary. Enjoy!

Please feel free to share YOUR Veggie Bin creations on our Facebook page!

100% Organic Bin

Organic Bin: Tomatoes, cauliflower, carrots w/tops, yellow squash, green beans, white peaches (SC), Vidalia onions, Gala Apples

Organic Mini Bin: Squash/zucchini, carrots, green beans, Gala apples, Vidalia onion

Organic Bin Recipes

Fruit Bin

  • Strawberries (FL)
  • Santa Rosa Plums
  • Gala Apples
  • Bananas

Black = Locally Sourced Conventionally Produced
Green = Locally Sourced Organics
Blue = Globally Sourced Organics

Winding Down!

For two months out of each year, The Veggie Bin goes on hiatus. For the months of August and September, our farmers don’t have enough produce to fill our bin orders. This is due to the extreme heat we’re already beginning to feel. As July goes on, produce becomes more and more difficult to find. Each week, we strive to find a variety of fruits and veggies, repeating only when necessary or when we have a seasonal favorite that is only available for a few weeks each year. (Good examples of this are our berries.)

We are making every effort to keep your bins up to our standards of variety, but we hope you’ll be patient with us if you get some of the same items in your bin these last few weeks of July. Our farmers are really sweating it out there and it’s been an especially rainy season which can ruin crops.

Be sure to mark your calendars for the end of Veggie Bin season. We’ll be reminding you often and starting you up again automatically when we come back in October. Thank you for your patience and stay cool, Veggie Binners!

Happy Cooking!

~The Veggie Bin Team

Tomatoes Unearthed!

Your tomatoes came to us from Hoover Farm in Live Oak, Florida – less than 95 miles from most of our customers’ homes.

Nothing calls up fond memories of summers past like a good tomato. Sliced on a sandwich, tossed in a salad or munched like an apple, the flavor of summer is defined by many as this juicy red orb. As we learn more about how our food and our health work together, the positive properties of the humble tomato have become obvious.

One medium sized-tomato provides over a third of the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C, and nearly a third of the recommended daily allowance of vitamin A. Tomatoes are also a great source of fiber, potassium and iron. Tomatoes don’t contain fat or cholesterol, but as with most veggies, you’ll want to watch how you prepare it. Research has shown that the body absorbs the healthy nutrients in a tomato better when it’s paired with a moderate amount of olive oil. We’ve all heard of the “Mediterranean diet” being excellent and science seems to be proving that lots of tomatoes and a little olive oil are a big part of the benefits.The word “tomato” comes from the Aztec “xitomatl,” which means “plump thing with a navel.” According to the Department of Agriculture, Americans eat between 22 and 24 pounds of tomatoes every year. We’ve increased our tomato consumption over 30% during the past 20 years and 93% of households with a garden grow tomatoes.
If your tomatoes are a little firm or seem under ripe, place them on a windowsill and they will ripen quickly. If you’re happy with their level of ripeness, place them on a shelf in a cool room away from direct sunlight. NEVER PUT A TOMATO IN THE REFRIGERATOR. Harold McGee in his book On Food and Cooking explains that chilling tomatoes damages the membranes inside the fruit walls, causing the tomato to lose flavor and develop the mealy texture we associate with mid-January grocery store tomatoes. Yuck. Don’t do it!Tomato preparation is pretty straightforward. Use a knife to remove the circular place where the stem attached and use a very sharp knife to break it down into the size and shape you’d like. A sharp knife is important because a dull knife will squish the tomato and can even slip off causing injury. A dull knife is a dangerous knife.

If you’d like a little extra instruction on how to prep tomatoes, here’s a helpful video.

Need Veggie Tech Support? Visit us on Facebook to share recipes and tips with other Veggie Bin customers and ask any questions you might have about the contents of your bin. You can also email us at info@theveggiebin.com.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!

Returning your bin clean and undamaged means that we can use it again and again. This keeps costs down, minimizes landfill waste and keeps your carbon footprint smaller. Bins that aren’t returned will incur a replacement fee, so be sure to put it out for pickup!

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