This week we are harvesting the Indian corn and curing it (it will make amazing corn meal in future weeks for corn bread), bringing in the butternut squash for the harvest, admiring the fall seedlings as they grow, turning the compost pile, not irrigating! (woohoo), checking the sweet potatoes for maturity so we know when to harvest them, and feeling very pleased to have carrots to speak of, and eat.
Treatise on Carrots: When have you seen fresh local carrots at a farm stand or market around here? Probably never, and with good reason. Carrots are difficult to grow well and consistently. Their tiny dill-seed size, their hesitance and finickiness to germinate, and their inability to compete with weeds because they are slow growing and they never really make a canopy to shade out young weed upstarts, means that very few farmers around here, other than CSA farms like ours will put the effort into growing them. But with that said, when we've got carrots, we are like the thieves who pulled off a jewel heist. Yes, we've got carrots.
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PULLED PORK BAR-B-QUE ON CIABATTA ROLL • GRILLED CHICKEN BREASTS • VEGAN WRAPS • BAKED BEANS • MACARONI SALAD • CHIPS • VEGAN SALAD • BROWNIES • BEVERAGES • BEER menu subject to change
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Cantaloupes: the cantaloupes had a fantastic run, but their time in the sun is done. Law Reh mowed down the spent and weedy patch with quiet glee.
Cucumbers: these are all done and and vines shredded to compost them back into the field
Kale/Collards/Senposai: these are surrendering to the hot summer weather as usual. We like to fry these in a skillet with butter or coconut oil until crisp, add some onions and saute them as well--a superb topping for rice, fried eggs or stand alone too.
Cabbage: great for a cabbage and chopped peanut with vinegar salad. Simple and surprisingly good in spite of its simplicity.
Garlic scapes: these are the would-be flowering stems of garlic--soft, tender, easy to use for stir fries, diced for salad, really anywhere a mild garlic flavor is desired. We like to use it for pesto here at the farm.
General rules of thumb:
If plentiful, take a little more, if scarce, go easy on the crop
For herbs--pinch only the tops of stems so that they can regrow.
RECIPE for ROASTED BUTTERNUT SQUASH & APPLE
Time to table: 1-1/4 hours
Makes 4 cups
- 1 butternut squash, about 1-1/2 pounds, washed well
- 1 tablespoon butter, melted
- 1 teaspoon curry powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- Freshly ground pepper to taste
- 2 apples, cored, chopped into half-inch pieces
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar (don’t skip)
SQUASH Place the squash in the microwave for 3 minutes to soften (see TIPS). Remove the skin, seeds and membrane, then into half-inch cubes (see How to Cut, Peel & Cube a Butternut Squash). In a large bowl (see TIPS), toss the squash with remaining squash ingredients, coating the cubes well with butter and spices. Transfer to baking dish. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes.
APPLES Combine apples, maple syrup and balsamic vinegar. Arrange apples over the squash. Re-cover with foil, bake for another 10 minutes.
Uncover the dish, stir and bake for about another 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes, until the squash is fully cooked and the liquid is absorbed. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Serve immediately.