A little rain here and there and some gargantuan efforts with irrigation have got us on track with moisture on the farm. This week we crest a hill of sorts that separates the last 6 months of prep and planting from the next 4 months of harvest. Our days become very structured as we add tomatoes, eggplant, carrots and peppers to the harvest list and work in between to keep the weeds down and plant the last rounds of greens. We are hoping we are back in the rain track so we can make the most of the next few weeks before we start losing our long days in August.
Tomatoes and Eggplant…Must Be Summer
Our first tomatoes and eggplant appear this week. For some reason one variety of our heirlooms are ahead of anything else (they are usually late). I had my first on a salad yesterday and after I was out of lettuce just kept going with balsamic vinegar and more tomato. The asian eggplant this week are my favorite. The skins are tender and don’t need to be peeled. I love to halve these, brush with olive oil and set them on the grill to almost blacken. They also do great sliced into very hot oil and tossed until tender. Sweet soy/teriyaki or tahini/yogurt makes an easy finish.
I think we have had our shortest snap/snow pea season in my history here. They really did not like the Carolina weather we had and we actually saw them drop flowers instead of make peas. We watered over the weekend and the cooler nights/rain may give them a second wind. Let’s cross our fingers.
Carrots Are Back
Our first carrot harvest went well. They are a little small but we couldn’t wait any longer, especially since we had a stellar group of exchange students from Spain wanting to help out. Watch your sugar intake on the days when you eat these… they are sweet.
Greens Are Good… but sometimes hard to keep up with
Some of you are well-versed in world of greens while others may be having a stare down with those bags in your fridge wondering where to start. We are here to help! We encourage you to jump in with both feet and find your food muse amongst the leaves of chard, kale and spinach. Start simple and combine these greens with things you and your family already like to eat.
- Salads of course – and making your salad into more of a meal by adding other veggies, nuts, chicken, legumes or other proteins. We find that if we have a delicious dressing already prepared, we are way more likely to eat a salad for a quick lunch. Here’s a link to our salads recipe page with an awesome balsamic vinaigrette.
- Stir fries and sautés. Try this article how to…
- Is pesto a favorite? Lightly steam your chard or kale, and throw it in the blender or food processor with garlic, onions, basil, or other herbs, toss it on pasta or pizza with oil or butter, and cheese.
- Bacon. We heard from a mom this week who cooks the bacon in a pan, and then adds in the greens. Her children devour every bite!
- Spanikopita. We’ve been making variations on this for years. I use kale, chard, or spinach, I use whatever cheese I might have, and I rarely use the filo dough due to time constraints. Sometimes I’ll top it with bread crumbs, roasted sunflower seeds, or even crushed up tortilla chips. We call it kale pie. I like to steam the greens and then puree them in the food processor. And lots of basil.
- Smoothies!! Green smoothies are all the rage these days. If you’re not doing it already, then get on the trend! Throw your greens in the blender along with fruit, juice, and you’ll be powered up for the day!
- Here’s a funny article about fashionable kale and another about a reluctant kale eaters conversion into the fold (with recipe).
- The internet of course has all the answers we need. Here is a list of recipes on Vegetarian Times with kale.
What’s in the share…
What’s in Upic…
Snow and Snap Peas