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Charlies Redhouse Farm Newsletter June 1 – June 8 Vegetables of the Week

Farm News

New on the horizon this week are baby turnips. Otherwise, our carrots are big, our beets are getting bigger, and we’ve got a lot of greens and herbs. If you liked Chinese cabbage last week, get it again!

Babies, continued:

The veggie of the week is kohlrabi. If you like broccoli stems, this is your vegetable. Cooked, it is somewhere between a broccoli stem and cauliflower. Raw, a crunchy, almost radishy addition to a salad. And the leaves can be cooked too—healthy, but a little bitter.

Turkeys (purchased).

Ducklings (hatched).

Notes for This Week Join us for a Father’s Day fishing derby! There are 94 rainbow trout in our pond. Come catch your lunch and celebrate this important day on the farm. Starts at 10 am and includes lunch at 12. Bring your own gear. RSVP by email to let us know you are coming! To see the history behind this Overgaag tradition, see this week’s story.

Baby goat (surprise!).

Order from our online store: Come visit us at our markets! Westminster Academy Hill Winchendon Central St Cambridge

Charlies Kitchen

Fri 3-6:30 Thu 4-7 Sat 10-1 Fri 12-6

Pick up for Cambridge customers is at the Cambridge farm stand or from 10-12 on Saturday. Email:

And our bottle babies…

Last week’s goat mother rejected one of her twins, so Amy became his adopted mother. We call him Lefty!

The Jerusalem Artichokes and asparagus have emerged.

A visit from the children… The blackberries are flowering like crazy—we will have a lot of blackberries this year!

And the planting attachment becomes a ride. Kees enjoyed himself almost as much as the children did. When we transplant on hot days, the plastic burns the new leaves. So we turned the plastic white!

The corn is coming up. Jen’s experiment: chamomile in a leaky boot.

We had a customer at the Winchendon market come, buy produce, eat it for lunch, and return to buy more! Thursday found nine people on the farm, and by Friday afternoon, only Kees and a lot of onions to plant…

And best of all, we had a visit from a former vlunteer, Emma Lewis! She helped us salvage the last of our spinach and stayed for a dinner of fresh farm pizza.

Story of the Week An Overgaag Tradition The Family Behind the Farm There is an Overgaag sign hanging up next to the barn door. It is a good reminder that Charlies Redhouse Farm is, in fact, an Overgaag farm. It is the connection between Overgaags that keeps the farm alive and well.

The Overgaag family, as you might guess from the name, comes from Holland—Delft, more specifically. Kees is the second oldest of six siblings, four brothers and two sisters. Life has spread them in many directions, but they manage to remain close-knit. Paul was the first in the United States, where he bought Charlies Kitchen and, later, the old house that would become the Redhouse. The youngest brother, Jaap, once came to visit. While he was there, the Charlies Kitchen manager threw down the keys and quit; Paul picked them up and handed them to Jaap. And so Jaap agreed to manage Charlies Kitchen. A few years later, Paul decided to buy a farm to supply the Redhouse. He needed someone to run it. So he called up Kees, who was at that moment in France. Kees, he said, do you want to come run a farm? Kees thought for a few seconds, and then decided to transplant himself across the ocean and become a farmer. That is the Overgaag style; never miss an opportunity you could accept. The Overgaags are strong, hardworking, opportunistic, down-to-earth, practical, and sometimes a little stubborn. They are also close-knit and value their family a lot.

There is a place in Holland called Giethoorn that is only navigable by canal. Its small counterpart is Klein-Giethoorn, in the South of Holland. This is where Father’s Day took place every year for the Overgaag family.

The family gathered together cousins, nieces, nephews, neighbors, and siblings and ventured out to Klein-Giethoorn every Father’s Day. There, they paddled out in two person wooden rowboats to catch what they could. Usually, claims Kees, they caught nothing at all. And in his memory it was always raining. But he remembers it fondly and is excited to transform the farm pond into his own KleinGiethoorn for the day! We hope you will join us.

Recipe Sautéed Kale with Kohlrabi 1 1/4 pound kohlrabi, bulbs peeled 1/2 teaspoon grated lime zest 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided 2 pounds kale (2 bunches), stems and center ribs discarded 5 garlic cloves, finely chopped 1/3 cup salted roasted pistachios, chopped Equipment: an adjustable-blade slicer Directions Very thinly slice kohlrabi. Whisk together lime zest and juice, 2 tablespoons oil, and 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper in a large bowl. Toss kohlrabi with dressing. Finely chop kale. Heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Sauté garlic until pale golden, about 30 seconds. Add kale by the handful, turning and stirring with tongs and adding more kale as volume in skillet reduces. When all of kale is wilted, sauté with 1/2 teaspoon salt until just tender, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and cool to room temperature. 3Toss kale with kohlrabi and pistachios.

Newsletter june 8  
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