Thursday, August 9, 2012

Greetings all and happy Dog Days!  Thought I'd take a moment to post a quick blog since there were quite a few photo worthy items in the harvest today.  I've started harvesting a few cucumbers per week.  If we get some rain and I then get a chance to mulch the beds we might even get enough to include them on our CSA lists.  Right now everything is just sitting in the garden not producing as it should.  But they say rain is on the way for this weekend so keep your fingers crossed.  These are a Maine-bred heirloom cucumber called Boothby's Blonde.  They are delicious and interesting!
 Carrots, carrots, carrots!  I got our new bed-lifter this week and I've been trying it out on everything I can.  I can say that it doesn't work on our carrots simply because I didn't set-up the beds to fit the tractor.  So I'll be digging the carrots by hand going forward as I have been.  Perhaps next year I'll put in a few feet with the bed-lifter in mind.  But, as a side benefit for you all, I'll be offering 'seconds' next week in the Member's Choice Email.  These are the carrots from about 6 feet of garden where I tried the bed-lifter and it simply sheered off the bottoms of the carrots.  Oh well!!!

Sunburst Patty-pan Summer Squash.  These little ones can be cooked the same way as any other summer squash.  We use the larger ones to stuff and roast.  I've had a number of folks at market try our recipe and come back with alternative suggestions for stuffing which I hope to try.  I also hope to get a chance to include some of the recipes on our recipes page but we'll see what time allows.

This rare French Heirloom is called 'Lemon' summer squash.  Nope, it doesn't taste like a lemon at all.  That comes from the aesthetic match.  Rather, it is a delicate, tiny summer squash offered in many French markets.  They are very difficult to harvest in time.  Much bigger than a golf ball and they are tough and worthless.  I've been experimenting with them the last couple years and may try to grow them more in the future for markets.  We'll see!

The large, slicing hybrid tomatoes in the hoop houses are starting to come in in greater numbers.  I was able to include 2 lbs in each of the Farmer's Choice Shares today!  Wahoo!

The ever dependable Swiss Chard plants are still kicking!  Drought tolerant too!  I love Chard for it's beauty, taste, diversity and ability to grow in the harshest conditions and swings in weather.

Royal Burgandy Beans.  They've finally arrived!  These are wonderful eaten raw as a snack.  When cooked they are ok but I eat them raw because I like the flavor, they are a crisp yet moist snack and the color fades to green when cooked (like most colorful veggies).

Sun Gold Cherry Tomatoes.  The one and only.  We had 20 orders for these today.  Very popular!  Very understandable.  Greenhouse candy!

Raven Zucchini.  Impressive for its ability to continue to produce prodigious amounts of food even in this weather!

I've started offering these delicious Detroit Dark Red Beets.  So sweet and flavorful I can't imagine not growing these beauties.  I love them as an eater and a grower.   

I couldn't resist.  This is what keeps me going even when I wake up at 4, 3 or even 2 am to harvest fresh for all of our members and customers each day.  Farmer Fuel.

Along with the beets, we are also offering a new item this summer.  Rather than discard the leaves, we are taking the time to sort and clean them and offer them to our members as prepared beet greens.  This is perfect for those of us who love beet greens but don't like the fact that we have to float them in our sink to remove the garden soil and then have a sink full of soil to clean up.  We've done all the work for you.  No beets or other roots to worry about, simply remove them from the bag, rinse them with your faucet spray nozzle and toss into the steaming water as normal.

Here is our new bed-lifter courtesy of Leighton's Fabrication Shop in Stetson.  These guys are really, really good and willing to work with people on designs of things they've never even heard of.  They do great work and so does this wonderful item.  This is making our garlic harvest so much faster I can't even quantify the difference.

Speaking of Garlic, here is the beginnings of this year's project.  Ben and I harvested about 1.5 rows on Wednesday and I'll be doing some more this weekend once the bees nest we (ok it was Ben but he didn't get stung) overturned has cleared out.  Then it's up to hang in the barn for curing, then sorting and then we can begin offering it to our members.

Finally, we love basil pesto at our house.  I mean LOVE.  Last year we froze about 60 batches worth.  At this time of year I like to add other fresh items from the garden as well.  Here is what I had for dinner.  Basil and carrot pesto.  I simply make regular pesto but throw some roughly chopped carrots in the processor with everything else.  The carrots add a wonderful je ne sais qua.  I hope you'll try it!

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