Thursday, October 23, 2008

4th Week of October

This Week at the Farm

Brrr…frosty mornings this week make for chilly work and harvesting. The fields are bright with heavy white frost this morning. Much of this week has consisted of breaking apart bulbs of garlic into individual cloves and planting each clove, basal end in the soil with the point sticking up, and then covering it so it can grow roots during fall, foliage in the spring, and mature a bulb in July. It is the only vegetable crop that we plant in the fall.

If this is your first season being part of the farm here, you’ll notice that many crops are undaunted by the frosts and freezes, and some are even improved, as their starches change to sugars and some bitter flavors turn mild or sweet. Collards and kale are in this group.

Gearing up for Gift Boxes

Each year we make and sell Holiday gift boxes that contain locally made treats such as Wilbur Buds, College Coffee Roasters coffee, apple and pear butters. They are available ordered online at: The order deadline is December 8 and they'll begin shipping in time for the holidays on December 12.

Serving Suggestions for the Harvest
  • Arugula: see more info and pesto recipe below
  • Turnips: The hakurei turnips are very tasty, even for people who think they won’t enjoy them. Also try the turnip kraut recipe below.
  • Mibuna and Mizuna: these Asian greens have a nice tangy flavor and can be used in salads or as cooked greens.
  • Cabbage: see the recipe below
  • Collards: tasty and nutritious fall greens—often enjoyed cooked.
  • Winter squashes—choice of great-flavored Red Kuri or butternut squash: use for pies and desserts, breads, roast the seeds, hot curried soup

Thank you

Thank you to Elizabeth and all of the trainees who planted 6,240 cloves of garlic this week in less than balmy weather. Nice job guys!


Upcoming Events

Final Harvest Week
November 13, 14 and 15
Eend of weekly harvest, beginning of self-harvesting for shareholders once the regular season is over. More details will follow in November.

Gift Box Season


Lorena’s Spicy Cabbage Salad
(adapted from the Extending the Table cookbook)
Half of a cabbage, sliced fine
Half of a medium onion, sliced
½ cup cider vinegar
1 T. oil
1 1/2t. salt
1 t. black pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1 ½ t. sugar
1/8 t. cayenne pepper or more as desired—(I used 1 ½ t. last time and it was hot!—Scott)
½ c. of chopped peanuts

Combine everything except peanuts and marinate at room temp for 30 minutes or more. Top with peanuts, chill and serve.

Turnip Kraut
6 lbs. raw turnips, shredded
2 tablespoons salt
1-3 teaspoons sugar
Brine made of 2 tablespoons salt per quart of water

Use a gallon stoneware jar or pottery crock; do not use a metal container. Layer shredded turnips in the crock, sprinkling the layers with salt and sugar and tamping down with a masher to release the turnip juices. Cover crock with a clean cloth, weight a plate on top and let stand 3-4 days at 70 degrees, changing the cloth each day.

Fermentation should take 3-4 weeks at 70 degrees. It is completed when the bubbling ceases.
Sterilize pint or quart jars. Place the kraut in the jars and cover with brine, leaving 1/2 -inch head space. Clean the rims of the jars and fit with lids and rings. At this point, you can store the sauerkraut in the refrigerator without processing. For shelf storage, process in a boiling water bath, pints for 20 minutes, quarts for 25 minutes. Makes 6 quarts.
--from MSG URL:

About Arugula

Arugula is an aromatic salad green. It is also known as rocket, roquette, rugula and rucola, and is popular in Italian cuisine.


Like most salad greens, Arugula is very low in calories and is high in vitamins A and C. A 1/2 cup serving is two calories.

History and Lore

In Roman times Arugula was grown for both it's leaves and the seed. The seed was used for flavoring oils. On another interesting note, Rocket or Arugula seed has been used as an ingredient in aphrodisiac concoctions dating back to the first century, AD. (Cambridge World
History of Food). Part of a typical Roman meal was to offer a salad of greens, frequently Arugula (spelled Arugola), romaine, chicory, mallow and lavender and seasoned with a "cheese sauce for lettuce."

Arugula Pesto
1 bunch arugula, stems removed (about 4 ounces)
2 3/4 teaspoons of coarse or Kosher salt
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground pepper to taste

Fill a large bowl with ice and add water, set aside. Fill a medium sized saucepan with water and the 2 1/2 teaspoons of salt, and bring it to a boil. Add the arugula and as soon as the water returns to a boil, remove the arugula with a slotted spoon and place it immediately into the ice water to stop the cooking process. Transfer the arugula to several layers of paper toweling or clean kitchen towels and allow to drain. Roll up the towels and squeeze as much moisture as possible from the arugula. Place the arugula in a blender jar and add the oil, 1/4 teaspoon of salt
and the pepper and puree until the mixture looks like thick pesto. There will be a small amount of oil on the surface. Use immediately or transfer the mixture to a jar with a tight fitting lid if you are going to store it. This will keep for at least 5 days, refrigerated. Before using, stir the pesto to incorporate the oil accumulated at the top. Serve the pesto over some freshly cooked pasta or boiled potatoes.

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