Monday, August 17, 2009

2nd Week of August

Notes from your Farm
The daylight is stealthily shortening as we breeze through August. We are at the midpoint in the season as we march along towards mid November's final harvest week. We received a lot of rain this week--about an inch Tuesday night, another inch yesterday afternoon, another inch or two during the night--all heavy downpours. One inch of rain falling on an acre is 27,154 gallons, so our five acres of vegetables received 543,000 gallons of water in the last two days. We are happy to be harvesting some green bell peppers this week, with a few reds mixed in.

It's always a help to read other CSA blogs to see what challenges they have during the growing season: Roxbury Farm, one of the largest CSA farms in the country, had crops under seven feet of water last week and submerged tractors and other equipment. Their blog is at if you'd like to see what they have to say and see what that much water looks like.

We have some excellent cookbooks here for sale that are a great match for seasonal and local eating.

Simply in Season Cookbook: has recipes in order for Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter crops.
Farmer John Cookbook: from the quirky Farmer John of the "Real dirt on Farmer John" movie fame. His Angelic Organics CSA is one of the best known in the country.
Simply in Season Children's cookbook: Fun, easy, and quick to prepare recipes to do with children.

Pick Your Own Field Highlights
  • Pole beans: including Red Noodle and Roma types, down at the low end of the PYO field.
  • Cut flowers: zinnias, snapdragons, celosia.
  • Basil: is ready: pinch off the tips just above where they branch--not sure, ask Bradley.
  • Tromboncino Squash Tower: Check out this rapidly growing vine and the bamboo tower that Bradley made for it.
  • Summer Savory: this herb located beyond the grapes in the PYO field. Very strong by itself, it is excellent with tomatoes.
  • Edible flowers: Nasturtiums, and Calendula and Borage are edible and are located also toward the end of the PYO field.
  • Sungold cherry tomatoes: yes, they have the late blight too--but there are some tomatoes there--harvest sparingly.
  • Heirloom tomatoes: various types located in the first row.

About Some of the Characters

  • Asian and Italian type eggplants: the slender Japanese type eggplants are usually sweeter and milder than the classic Italian types. Their color is fabulous too. Coating slices with oil and soy sauce and grilling them is quick and delicious.
  • Carrots: munch on them like a marauding rabbit or see Maple carrot recipe below.
  • Mars: these red onions can be used now or kept for storage.
  • Leeks: generally--use the white part and discard the tough green stem. Leeks often have soil in the layers, so it is good to halve them and rinse the separated layers.
  • Potatoes: baked, boiled, roasted, they are excellent.

Maple Carrots Recipe

1 ½ lb of carrots, peeled and cut into half-inch thick rounds.
½ cup of water.
3 tablespoons of butter.
2 tablespoons of maple syrup.
1 tablespoon of brown sugar.
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste.

1) In a large skillet, bring all ingredients to boil.
2) Reduce heat to medium, then cover and simmer for 8 minutes.
3) Uncover and cook until the juices are reduced to glaze (4-5 minutes).
4) Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Yields 5-6 servings.


Questions or Feedback?

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