Melon: We are thrilled to be sending you a first-of-the-season, vine-ripe melon in your box this week.  We planted over 12 varieties this year with a focus on taste and size.  Although it hasn’t been the perfect weather for growing melons, we are happy to put your taste buds to the test. Please visit our website for more information and color photos of the melons we are growing this year so you can identify what you got and let us know how you like them.  Eat soon and enjoy! Strawberries, OR Peaches OR Plums If you get strawberries in your box this week, they are of the Chandler and Seascape varieties and should be eaten soon since we pick them ripe.  To store, leave them in the green basket inside of paper bag in fridge and wash only before consuming.  You might instead receive purple plums or nectarines.  They are ripe and ready to eat, but to further ripen fruit, place it in a paper bag for a day or two. Always wash before eating and enjoy!

Basil: It is a succulent, oh-so-aromatic  herb that adds depth to many a dish and can be made into a tasty pesto  Store in plastic bag in fridge and use soon.

Cherry Tomatoes: Enjoy this colorful mix of heirloom cherry tomatoes! These delicious candy-like treats are a welcome addition to any green salad, pasta salad, or as a quick snack.  Never store in fridge to maintain great flavor and texture.  Keep on the counter and eat soon.

Heirloom Tomatoes:  We have Brandywines, Piriform, Lemon Boys, Copias, Purple Calabash and Green Zebras just to name a few (see the website for photos of each).  These make a killer bruschetta or BLT sandwich.   These beauties should be stored on the counter and eaten soon. Wash well before eating and enjoy!

Shady Lady Tomatoes: These are a great slicing variety with a lot of vine-ripe flavor. Always store tomatoes on the counter, as putting them in the fridge will change their texture and taste. Store them "belly button" down.  Wash before eating and enjoy the taste of summer!

Summer Squash:   With a delicate flavor, these zucchini can be quickly sauteed or steamed with just a touch of oil or butter and some fresh herbs.  It also goes well shredded in a salad or baked into bread.  Stores best in plastic bag in fridge and wash before eating.

Sweet Banana Peppers OR Yellow Tapered Peppers: Enjoy these deliciously sweet and crunchy peppers! The banana peppers look like a big pepperoncini or resemble a hungarian wax pepper but are a larger and sweeter cousin to them both.  These are amazing sliced fresh in a salad, are terrific stuffed with cheese or meat and grilled, and are wonderful pickled. They are great eat raw in salads or roasted and add a special something to any summer dish. Store in crisper and wash well.

Green OR Red Bell Peppers:  These sweet and versatile peppers have an irresistible crunch are a great addition to salads, stir-fries, and are perfect for stuffing.  Green peppers turn red and become sweeter as they mature and some of you might just get some that are "sun-tanned" (or green with some red).   Store in crisper in fridge and wash before eating.

Mixed Hot Peppers: This is a spicy mix of cayenne, cherry bomb, serranos, poblanos, middle eastern long, and jalapeno peppers (see our website for photos of each).  Add a great kick to many summer meals and salsas.  Wear gloves when slicing to avoid getting the hot capsicum oil on your hands and remove seeds and membranes for less heat.  Store in crisper in fridge and wash before eating.

Tomatillos:  These beautiful self-packaged gems make an amazing green salsa (see this week’s recipe) and are a wonderful addition to tomato sauces:  dry roast in a hot pan, stirring occasionally, until rather soft.  Take care not to burn!  Store in bag in fridge and remove papery skins before use.

Potatoes: This week, you will receive either Yellow Finn or German Butterball potatoes. Both are buttery tasting varieties with a tender flesh.  Store in fridge and eat the skin for most nutrients. Wash well before eating and enjoy!