Thursday, July 26, 2012

Hello from the farm, 

It's been a real spud of a week here, as the potato harvest continues and we had to make an "emergency" run for 60 more potato baskets to hold the bumper crop.  The farm crew finished up the record onion harvest as well,  and the onions are happily curing in the greenhouse.  It is necessary to dry the necks down on onions so that they will cure and store well.

We just made some potato chips for lunch and they turned out deliciously.  The melons are starting to ripen and we all look forward to them, as they are the favorite "vegetable" :-) for many of your farmers.  We also got the rest of the fall broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels and greens planted, which was no small feat--nice job!

Spotlight on Law Reh: 

Position at the farm: Special Operations, Farm Staff
Number of years working for Goodwill: 2 years plus
Years of farming experience: thirty plus
Favorite thing to grow at the farm: cucumber, tomato, beans, cilantro, potatoes
Where he was born: Bo la ket, Burma (Myanmar)
Number of years spent in a refugee camp in Thailand: 20 years
What he wanted to be when he grew up:  a father and a husband
Favorite thing about the farm: driving tractor
What he brings to the group:
Favorite place he has lived:  Burma
Favorite sport to watch: soccer
Law Reh’s family includes: his wife Dee Muh, 3 daughters: U Meh, So Meh  Bu Meh , son Chu Leh,  and his 2 year-old grandson
Something Law Reh can’t live without: coffee
Law Reh’s hobbies include: cooking and yoga
Languages he speaks: English, Kareni, Thai and Burmese

Tom milling a log. We can make barn boards and lumber from trees that come down or are given to us.

Suggestions for the Harvest:
Melons:  nothing says summer like melons!  Try with fresh ground black pepper on your cantaloupe.
Storage Onions:  the red and white onions are keepers. Great for burgers or whatever.
Sweet Onions: carmelize in a fry pan with lots of butter...tasty! Not a storage onion-use within a week or two.
Sweet Peppers: great for salads or fried with onions and garlic.
Potatoes: this fresh new potatoes are excellent!  One has a red interior. They are all good. My favorite summer treatment is a Lebanese style potato salad with just olive oil and herbs.  Today for lunch--we sliced the potatoes thinly and cooked in peanut oil until crisp and lightly browned.  Mmmm. 
Carrots: these fresh carrots are like candy, just to pop in your mouth and eat raw or add to salad, etc.
Eggplant: coat with oil and soysauce and grill, or bread them and fry.
Chard: use in lieu of spinach in babaganoush, salads,
Scallions: these mild onions are great anywhere onion is needed
Cucumber: these cucumbers are outstanding!  Makes an off-season cuke seem inedible. My favorite way to use cucumbers is a salad with tomato, onion and garlic with olive oil.
Beets: these can be grated raw into salad or roasted or pickled.  See pickled beet recipe below
Kale: sautee until crispy with onions and butter, Remove the rib and stem first!
Collards: same as kale

Pickled Beets Recipe


  • 1 bunch (4 or 5) beets
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  • Salt and pepper


1 Remove greens from beets, save for future use (see beet greens recipe). Cut beets to uniform sizes so they will cook evenly. Steam or boil around 30 minutes or until done. (Alternatively, you can roast them by wrapping them whole in foil and cooking them in a 350°F oven for about an hour.) A fork easily inserted into the beet will tell you if the beets are done or not.
2 Drain the beets, rinsing them in cold water. Use your fingers to slip the peels off of the beets. The peels should come off easily. Discard the peels. Slice the beets.
3 Make the vinaigrette by combining the cider vinegar, sugar, olive oil, and dry mustard. Whisk ingredients together with a fork. The dry mustard will help to emulsify the vinaigrette. Adjust to taste. Add salt and pepper to taste. Combine beets and vinaigrette in a bowl and allow to marinate for a half hour at room temperature.
Serves four.

Thank You:

Thank you farm crew and staff for an excellent job contending with the onslaught of onions, a good problem to have, and perseverance with with proliferating potatoes.  Way to go!

Your farmers 

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