Sunday, August 30, 2015

Wow, how about some rain? Didn't think I'd be having to wish for rain this year. We'll be installing our irrigation system for the first time this year.

This week's expected vegetables
Choose 8 items (large share 10 items):
carrots
broccoli
radishes
pac choi
chinese cabbage
potatoes
peppers
eggplant
cherry tomatoes
sweet onions
tomatoes
basil
green beans
yellow beans
dragon tongue beans
zucchini
summer squash
kale 
chard (maybe)
pea shoots
sunflower shoots
husk cherries
tomatillos
lettuce
lettuce mix
spicy mix
peppers
flour
dry black beans

Sunday, August 23, 2015

 recently germinated winter storage radishes (purple and green daikons, and watermelon radishes!)
 swallowtail caterpillars on carrot leaves
red noodle beans almost ready to harvest

a couple of fun and easy recipes!

roasted green beans:
these are so easy an really delicious!  toss beans with oil spread on a baking tray, sprinkle with salt and roast at 350 until tender, about 20 minutes (depending on size of beans).  we make these without pulling the tops off, and then just eat to the stem and leave the stem on the plate, great for a busy day!


zucchini pizzas. 
slice large zucchinis into three or four lasagna noodle length pieces (make them thicker than a noodle, though, about 1/2 inch thick) spray with oil, cook in oven or on grill 5 minutes or until tender.  flip over add tomato sauce, cheese and any other pizza toppings you like!  bake or grill until cheese is melted.  serve like french bread pizza.  easy enough a kid could make, simple and gluten free!


This week's expected vegetables
Choose 8 items (large share 10 items):
carrots
broccoli
radishes
pac choi
chinese cabbage
potatoes
peppers
eggplant
cherry tomatoes
sweet onions
tomatoes
basil
green beans
yellow beans
dragon tongue beans
zucchini
summer squash
kale 
chard (maybe)
pea shoots
sunflower shoots
husk cherries
tomatillos
lettuce
lettuce mix
spicy mix
peppers
flour
dry black beans

have a great week!
liz and matthew

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Tomato variety results from the tomato tasting potluck dinner at the farm:
In the sauce tomato category: Cream Sausage and Juliets tied
Slicers - the favorite turned out to be Green Zebra
Among the cherry tomatoes Pink Princess was the winner by far.
note: My favorite slicer (Rose de Berne) and cherry tomato (Sun Gold) did not even come close in the voting.

This week's expected vegetables
Choose 8 items (large share 10 items):
potatoes
peppers
carrots (hopefully for real this week)
eggplant
cherry tomatoes
sweet onions
tomatoes
basil
beets (maybe)
cucumbers (maybe)
green beans
yellow beans
dragon tongue beans
zucchini
summer squash
kale 
chard (maybe)
pea shoots
sunflower shoots
husk cherries
tomatillos
lettuce
lettuce mix
spicy mix
peppers
flour
dry black beans

Sunday, August 9, 2015

 We will have salad greens this week after not having any last week
 Thirsty bees
You might not be thinking of what you will be eating this winter yet...but we are. This is our new hoophouse before I tilled the soil yesterday. This week we will be transplanting kale and chard here and salad greens will be planted later in the early fall. Sometime in the next couple months when the weeding and planting and harvesting slows down and before it gets too cold we will put the plastic on the hoophouse. Also, this week we will be planting those beloved watermelon radishes that we hope to have available all winter.

Farm Event 
 Saturday August 15 6:00 we will host a tomato tasting event and potluck on the farm. Tomato varieties: Aunt Ruby's, Green Zebra, Jubilee, Geronimo, Rose de Berne, Great White, Black Krim plus 8 varieties of cherry tomatoes.

This week's expected vegetables
Choose 8 items (large share 10 items):
new potatoes
carrots
eggplant
cherry tomatoes
onions
tomatoes
cabbage
basil
beets
cucumbers
green beans
yellow beans
dragon tongue beans
zucchini
summer squash
kale 
chard (maybe)
pea shoots
sunflower shoots
husk cherries
tomatillos
lettuce
peppers
eggs (count as 2 items)
flour
dry black beans

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Tomato Season is upon us!  For those who are wondering why so many of our tomatoes are not red and are oddly shaped, let us introduce you to heirloom tomatoes!  Heirloom plants, like the family heirloom armoire that was handed down from grandma, are seeds from plants that families saved and handed down because they made delicious fruits!  its a radical concept- to keep seeds from really tasty plants, as today's breeding work generally focuses on keeping seeds from plants that all look exactly the same, mature uniformly, and ship well.  Modern plant breeding, in fact doesn't prioritize taste much at all, just getting things to the store looking perfect.  But older gardeners and farmers knew that the taste of a food was a very important characteristic!  Consequently heirloom vegetables are tasty, often have interesting and descriptive names, (such as Aunt Ruby's German Green (one of our favorites), Schimmeig striped hollow, Hill Billy Potato leaf, mortgage lifter, and many great others) and sometimes are downright oddly shaped or colored.  We try to grow a whole rainbow of tomato colors, so that we can slice a tray that covers the whole color spectrum!  A great place to learn more about heirloom tomatoes, seed saving, and the histories of some fascinating seeds is the seed savers exchange.  (www.seedsavers.org)

We want to give you a chance to taste test all of the colors we grow, so we are holding a potluck and tomato tasting event at the farm!  it will be saturday August 15th at 6PM, we will have farm tours, bigger than last time baby goats, slices of tomatoes and chance to spend some time on a lovely vegetable growing farm!  hope you can make it!


Sorry probably no salad greens this week. Due to the wet weather of the last few weeks we were unable to get any salad green planted in a timely manner so we will not have any available for this week. Potato salad anyone? Cabbage salad (cole slaw?) Kale salad! tomato salad? cherry tomato salad?! cucumber salad, shoots salad....time to be creative!

happy eating!

This week's expected vegetables
Choose 8 items (large share 10 items):
new potatoes
carrots
eggplant
cherry tomatoes
onions
tomatoes
cabbage
basil
beets
cucumbers
green beans
yellow beans
dragon tongue beans
zucchini
summer squash
kale 
chard (maybe)
pea shoots
sunflower shoots
eggs (count as 2 items)
flour
dry black beans

Sunday, July 26, 2015

 The meager garlic harvest. Turns out we still have not perfected the art of growing garlic. Many of them rotted again last winter and spring. Hopefully our ideas for fixing the problem will help for next year.
 A nice photo to stroke our farmer egos
Name that vegetable: A tomato of course

Casualties of all this rain:
chard: about 2/3 of the crop has died due to wet roots
carrots: 2 beds have completely rotted
onions: any onions in the slightest of depressions have failed to thrive
Ditto: sections of brussels sprouts, cabbage, peppers, tomatillos and kale

We are also lacking in any kind of salad greens this week due to the fact that that soil has been too wet to till and get anything planted in the last couple weeks. (we will still have shoots for greens)

We are thinking we need to find some way to add drainage tiling in our fields. We probably should have done so before but we have never had the urgent need for added drainage that we have this year.

eggplants are starting to roll in!  If you have never cooked with eggplant, you can just slice it, toss it with a little oil and basil (or your favorite herb) and saute or grill it!  For a little fancier presentation, try one of these great eggplant recipes from Julie, a super friend to the farm!

Spicy Eggplant with Onion

★★★★★
Main course
Prep 15 mins ∙ Cook 15 mins ∙ Makes 4 ∙ Difficulty Medium ∙ Source Madhur Jaffrey's World of the East Vegetarian Cooking

Ingredients

  • 1 lb eggplant
  • 1 ½ to 2 tsp chili paste with soy bean and garlic
  • 5 tsp Chinese thin soy sauce
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 large onion, peeled and cut into ¾ inch cubes
  • 1 cup oil

Directions

1. Cut the eggplant into 1 ½ inch cubes.
Mix the chili paste, soy sauce, sugar, and ½ cup water in a cup.
2. Heat ½ cup of the oil in a wok over a medium flame. When hot, put in the eggplant. Stir and fry for 4 or 5 minutes. The eggplant will absorb all of the oil. Add the remaining ½ cup of oil by pouring it around the edges of the wok and letting it slither downward toward the vegetable. Stir and fry for another 5 minutes or until the eggplant has browned lightly and is tender enough to eat. Remove eggplant with a slotted spoon and place in a sieve set over a bowl.
3. Remove all but ¼ cup oil from the wok. Add the garlic. Stir and fry for 15 seconds. Put in the onion. Stir and fry until the pieces turn soft, about 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the heat down a bit if the onion starts to brown. Separate the onion layers as you cook. Put the eggplant in the wok. Stir the mixture in the cup and pour it over the eggplant.
4. Cook on medium heat, stirring as you do so, until all the liquid is absorbed. Remove eggplant with a slotted spoon, leaving all the oil behind in the wok.

Notes

Delicious Chinese eggplant; the eggplant gets satiny and the sauce is spot on.
It does call for a lot of oil and I've found that there isn't that much that drains out, but it's delicious and I don't make it that often!


Ratatouille, or Baked Mixed Vegetables with Olive Oil

★★★★
Main course
Prep 30 mins ∙ Cook 1 hr ∙ Makes 4-6 ∙ Difficulty Easy ∙ Source Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything Vegetarian

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ to 2 lb eggplant, diced
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus some for garnish
  • 2 large onions, diced
  • 1 lb zucchini, trimmed and diced
  • 4 plum or 2 round tomatoes, cored and chopped
  • Fresh herbs (can include thyme, marjoram, rosemary, savory, basil, parsley)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 10 cloves garlic, peeled and halved

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Film a casserole or heavy ovenproof skillet with a couple of tablespoons of olive oil, then make a layer of the onion, followed by one of the eggplant, zucchini, tomatoes, herbs, salt, pepper, and garlic cloves. Repeat. Drizzle with the remaining olive oil, cover with aluminum foil, and put in the oven.
3. Bake for about an hour, until the vegetables are completely tender. Garnish with more herbs, drizzle with a little more olive oil, and serve hot, warm, or at room temperature.

Notes

I chop all of the veggies quite small and I add 1 can of chick peas. Great on top of pasta!
You could, if you choose, leave the veggies in larger chunks. You can also add green or red pepper, potatoes, and/or mushrooms.
I found it cooks better and stays moister if you cover the baking dish with foil.

Vegetable Lasagne

★★★★★
Main course
Prep 1 hr ∙ Cook 45 mins ∙ Makes 10 ∙ Difficulty Easy ∙ Source Sunset Vegetarian Cooking

Ingredients

  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb eggplant, diced
  • ¼ lb mushrooms, sliced or diced
  • 1 lb chopped fresh tomatoes (or canned)
  • 1 16 oz can tomato sauce
  • ½ cup dry red wine
  • 1 medium carrot, shredded
  • ¼ cup chopped parsley
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp each dry basil and salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 16 packaged lasagne noodles (I like the no boil kind by Barilla)
  • 1 lb ricotta cheese
  • 8 oz shredded mozarella cheese
  • 4 ½ oz grated parmesan cheese

Directions

1. Heat oil in a wide frying pan over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, eggplant, and mushrooms and cook, stirring frequently, for 15 minutes. Add tomatoes (and their liquid if canned), tomato sauce, wine, carrot, parsley, oregano, basil, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 30 minutes. Uncover and continue cooking until sauce is thick. You should have 5 cups of sauce; set aside.
2. If using traditional noodles, cook in a large pot of boiling salted water according to package directions. Drain, rinse with cold water and drain again.
3. Butter a 9x13 inch baking dish. Spread about ¼ of the sauce in dish. Arrange ⅓ of the noodles in an even layer over sauce. Dot noodles with ⅓ of the ricotta. Sprinkle with ⅓ of the mozarella, then ¼ of the parmesan. Repeat this layering two more times. Spread remaining sauce evenly over the top and sprinkle with remaining parmesan cheese. If made ahead, cover and refrigerate.
4. Bake, uncovered, in a 350 degree oven until hot and bubbly (40-50 minutes). Cut in squares to serve.

Notes

Takes time but it's worth it.



 

This week's expected vegetables
Choose 7 items (large share 9 items):
new potatoes
romanesca cauliflower
carrots
eggplant
cherry tomatoes
onions
tomatoes
cabbage
basil
beets
broccoli
cucumbers
green beans
yellow beans
dragon tongue beans
zucchini
summer squash
kale 
chard (maybe)
pea shoots
sunflower shoots
eggs (count as 2 items)
flour
dry black beans

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Uggh...more rain :(

 Weeded ginger on the left and unweeded ginger on the right
 Romanesca! We didn't think we would be able to grow this crop because it needs high fertility and because of the Swede midge pest. But we planted about 50 of them and most plants look like they will produce heads. So get them while they last...we'll only have a few at each market day.
Its that time of year - time to get the stepladder out to prune tomatoes!
 Mmmm kale!
Doh! Due to springtime busy-ness, tractor maintenance and attention goes out the window. So, after all the oil leaked out of the bearings, the wheel fell off. Because of all the rain though, the soil is too wet to till right now anyway.

This week's expected vegetables
Choose 7 items (large share 9 items):
new potatoes
romanesca cauliflower
carrots
baby chard (maybe)
eggplant
cherry tomatoes
onions
tomatoes
cabbage
basil
beets
broccoli
cucumbers
green beans
zucchini
summer squash
kale 
chard (maybe)
lettuce mix
spicy mix
pea shoots
sunflower shoots
eggs (count as 2 items)
flour
dry black beans