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Archive for July, 2016

We are praising the Sun and it’s heat, and the Rain and it’s moisture, for providing us with an abundant harvest on Week 10 of the season!

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Lettuce in Flower, the face of the Sun

VEGGIE OF THE WEEK IS GARLIC!!!

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We are finally able to offer our sought-after GARLIC in large quantities and to the public!!!

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Garlic hanging to dry and cure

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From last week’s market table

Garlic is a must for every meal in our house, it isn’t a meal without Garlic! The variety we grow is called Music and it thrives in our rich soil.

New this week is our much loved mix of fresh snap Beans, folks who’ve tried our mixes ask for them year after year. They include Dragon, Tongue of Fire, Rattlesnake, Blu Jay, Amethyst, as well as a variety of red, yellow, and green beans.

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Also new this week (in limited quantities, for now) – Candy Tomatoes!

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On our market tables this week we’ll also have: Red Cabbage and Cabbage Leaves, Chinese (Napa) Cabbage, Spaghetti Squash + Sweet Dumpling Squash, Mini-Cumcumbers, Mushrooms, Sweet Peppers, Eggplant, Summer Squash, Scallions, Grape Leaves, Rainbow Leafies, Kohlrabi (limited), Fennel, Basil and other fresh herbs, Broccoli, and small amounts of Beets.

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Week 10 is looking fabulous!

From around the farm this week …

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Polyphemus Moth

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Red Spotted Purple Butterfly

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Baby Ants, newly hatching from their nest under a Tree.

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The farm children were quite surprised with the Cucumbers they’ve been growing in their own personal garden! These were shared and enjoyed with all our neighbourhood children.

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Once again we find ourselves betwixt and between, a season that comes every year, when it’s too hot for salad, kale, and roots, and when the goodies of summer like tomatoes, peppers, and beans, aren’t quite ready. But take heart, the tomatoes and beans have indeed begun, we’ve had our first taste of them this week *smiles* This heat, while making harvesting quite a challenge for us, does wonders for Summertime veggie favourites.

This is also a week when we’re unsure of what we’ll find to fill out the weekly veggie shares so keep in mind there will be a lot of SURPRISES in the next couple of weeks. We found some spaghetti squash as well as delicata and sweet dumpling squashes that might find their way to our market tables next week.

A note about the purple peppers – these are actually green peppers that have been bred to have a purple skin so think of them as purple green peppers, if that makes sense, haha.

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Much thanks this week to our “extension” farmer, Siobhan P, who brought us big, juicy purslane and baby beet greens and who will later have beets and other treats for our members. This is a work share partnership where we exchange veggies for veggies and harvesting help for veggies. We’re very grateful for these farm friends.

The veggie of the week this week is: BASIL!

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A fragrant treat while we wait for the flush of Tomatoes, Basil is a versatile kitchen herb. Traditionally used to season tomato-based pasta sauces it stores better when it’s turned into Pesto (drying and freezing drastically reduce it’s volatile oils, those to which is owes is fragrance). There are as many ways to make Pesto as there are ways to use pesto.

A basic pesto recipe looks like this:

GARLIC SCAPE PESTO

1 pound Garlic Scapes or 1 whole head of garlic

1 bunch of Basil, Arugula, Kale, Fennel or any other leafy green

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese or nutritional yeast

1/2 to 1 cup of Olive Oil

2 Tablespoons lemon juice (optional)

1/2 cup Walnuts, Almonds, Pecans, Pine Nuts, Sunflower seeds or Pumpkin seeds (optional)

Chop the Scapes into 3 inch lengths (for easier processing). Put it in the food processor and process until pureed. Add the Basil or other leafy green and process until smooth. Add the parmesan or nutritional yeast and nuts or seeds and process until smooth again. Add lemon juice then slowly add the olive oil as the food processor is running and continue until all the oil is combined. You might need to slowly add the oil and lemon with the leafy greens to get your processor to blend everything properly. Store in an air-tight jar in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks or freeze.

A recipe for a nut free lacto-fermented pesto can be found here.

CSA member Wendy Rose shared this recipe last season (Basil can be swapped out for Fennel) ~

Fennel Fronds Pesto
Ingredients:
2 cups fennel fronds, stemmed removed and packed
1/2 cup almond flour or slivered almonds
2 tbsp hemp hearts
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 – 1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
Directions:
  1. Add all ingredients into a high powered blender and blend until smooth.

Basil can also be blended with a small amount of water or with an oil and put into ice cube trays and into the freezer. Pop them out when frozen and put into a freezer bag. Each cube makes for an easy way to add flavour to a plain tomato sauce. Or use the pesto for a tomato sauce free alternative for your favourite pasta noodles. We love pesto on fresh tomatoes, as a veggie dip, on sandwiches.

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Veggies you might find this week include: Cabbage leaves, Grape leaves, Scallions, Red Cabbage, Napa/Chinese Cabbage, Kohlrabi, Portabella Mushrooms, mini Cucumbers, fresh Garlic, Peppers, Eggplant, Summer Squash, Winter Squash, Broccoli, and of course, Basil and other fresh and dried Herbs.

P.S. The Veggies tab has been updated with links to Summer Squash and Eggplant recipes!

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We took time this week to pick organic Blueberries from Blueberry Hill in Rodney.

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Veggie of the Week: Brassicas!

The Brassica family is a large one and includes Red + Green Cabbage, Savoy Cabbage, Kale, Collards, Kohlrabi, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Brussels Sprouts, Chinese (Napa) Cabbage, Turnips, and more!

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Photos by Susan Platsko

Savoy Cabbage

Savoy Cabbage

Chinese (Napa) Cabbage

Chinese (Napa) Cabbage

Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi

Q: How does a farmer fix their pants?

A: With a Cabbage patch

This is another odd choice because in previous weeks the Veggie Of The Week was plentiful and there was more than enough for every one. We decided to feature the Brassicas, even though we don’t have enough of any one item for every member, because it’s such a large family and eventually every member will get to enjoy several items from this prolific, and nutritious, family. As what usually happens with Cabbages (especially), they don’t all ripen at the same time and so they get harvested over several weeks.

Please make use of the search function on this website to find all the recipes we’ve posted over the years for all the members of this family! Here are some highlights: Using Chinese Cabbage to make Kimchi, Kohlrabi Bistro Salad, Everything you ever wanted to know about Savoy Cabbage. Red Cabbage adds a wonderful crunch and colour pop to any salad or stir fry and can be used to make raw lacto-fermented or cooked sauerkraut. The leaves can be used to make Cabbage rolls or sliced and added to soups and stir fries. Savoy Cabbage can be substituted for Red Cabbage in any recipe. Napa Cabbage is also a lovely addition to stir fries. Kohlrabi can be eaten like an apple, it’s a crunchy “mini-cabbage”, don’t be scared by it’s alien-like appearance, it’s leaves are also edible. Our Broccoli is finally producing more and we love the long stems and leaves. There are so many ways to enjoy Brassicas!

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Can you spot all the items in this pic? Red Cabbage head + bunches of leaves, fresh Garlic, Rainbow Leafies, Summer Squash, Radnips, Eggplant, Purple Peppers, Kohlrabi, fresh Mint, Broccoli

The Chinese Eggplant + Purple Peppers + Summer Squash (this includes Zuchini + Patty Pans) are just starting to come on! We’ll have more (limited quantities) of fresh Garlic available! Salad mix + Scallions are available but not pictured as well as a variety of fresh herbs including Basil, Dill, Thyme, Lemon Balm, and Mint. Mint and Lemon Balm make wonderful fresh teas, they can also be hung to dry and make into nutritious and healing wintertime teas.

New this week – we’ll have fresh flower bouquets available at ShopEco on Wednesdays!

This gal works hard to make beautiful bouquets ….

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We both work hard, and look darn cute, when we do markets 😉

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Pictures by cyborg and trixter Naty

We have grown many, many more Garlic than in any previous year and we are working at setting up a larger curing area. For those folks waiting for their Garlic fix, not to worry, it will be ready in large quantities soon enough! In the meantime, we enjoy the fresh, juicy, raw Garlic from injured heads …. (many thanks to our wonderful farm friend, Mr. Humble, who worked tirelessly today with the Garlic harvest) ….

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Yes, that’s raw garlic 😉

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“Music” Garlic is music for the heart, the body, the soul

And a random fun picture to end the week ….

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Veggie of the Week: Grape Leaves

Strange choice, we know, but the farm children were adamant that they wanted to pick these for everyone, even after we told them that would mean harvesting over 500 leaves! It might be because they miss the fantastic Lebanese restaurants in Windsor that serve variations on Stuffed Grape Leaves.

Q: Why did the grape stop in the middle of the road?

A: It ran out of juice!

Nutritional Benefits include being a great source of Vitamin A, Vitamin K, and Maganese. For the full  “nutrition facts” check out this full profile from Self.

You can add them to Green Smoothies, use them as wraps, or add them to a salad.

You can make any of these variations on Stuffed Grape/Vine Leaves: Vegetarian Stuffed, with instructions on preparing fresh and raw leaves (Lebanese style), Authentic Greek Dolmades, Dolmadakia by Lerios, the kitchn’s take, On a Budget (numbers laid out), allrecipes has a great selection on variations, Vegetarian Dolma, Vegan Stuffed Grape Leaves.

We’ve also added “Snake Tongue”, taken from the grape vine plant, to the salad mixes. It’s a sorrel-lemon flavoured treat.

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Items on offer this week include: Salad Mix, Rainbow Leafies, Scallions, Radnips, a variety of Fresh Herbs including Fennel and Calendula (can be dried or infused in oil or water and used to make a variety of healing salves and more), Dried Herbs. New this week: fresh Garlic, Red Cabbage, whole Cabbage leaves (some of you have already seen some of these!).

Recipe Ideas for Cabbage leaves include: shredding them to make sauerkraut (lacto-fermented and raw, or cooked) and stuffed recipes for classic Cabbage Rolls.

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Week 7: Fennel, Salad Mix, Radnips, Beets, fresh Garlic, Scallions, Grape Leaves, Kale, Cabbage Leaves, dried Sage, Red Cabbage, Calendula.

This is fuuuuhresssssh Garlic, just out of the ground, not cleaned, not cured, and super potent and juicy! If it’s too fresh for you simply hang it in a warm dry place to let it cure.

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A Garlic that got injured in harvesting. Look at the number of cloves in this beauty!

So far the Garlic this year looks to be at least 3 times bigger than the biggest Garlic we usually get. Something is working right here on this farm!

 

 

After drought and extremely dry conditions we were happy to wake up to over an inch of Rain on Friday morning!

Lastly, we came upon the first Wild Turkey feather ever found on this farm. We’re still confirming but we believe we’ve found some other rare birds on the farm this week as well. So much LIFE here!

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Fun With A Feather

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A little bit of housekeeping – Before the season began we intended to have a “swap box” so that folks could swap a veggie they don’t like for one they will enjoy. If you have a pre-packaged bag and you get something you won’t use please feel free free to swap it out for an item of equal value from the market table. If you’re on the “market shares” program please feel free to swap out a fixed veggies from the list for something of equal value from the market table. We want everyone to be happy with the veggies they receive each week *smile*

VEGGIE OF THE WEEK IS ….. ALLIUMS!

From Wikipedia, “Allium is a genus of monocotyledonous flowering plants that includes the cultivated onion, garlic, scallion, shallot and leek as well as chives and hundreds of other wild species.”

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Perennial Onions also known as Egyptian Onions and Walking Onions

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The Farm Children are comparing their Onion picks.

While not all Alliums are included in this week’s shares we will have plenty of Scallions (purple + white), whole Chives (they’re almost identical to Scallions), and Perennial Onions (the whole plant is edible – bulb, stem, and bulbils on the tops). The Allium family is among the most healthy of all plants, more info on the benefits from The Wonderful World of Alliums.

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Scallions, whole Chives, bunch of Chinese Cabbage , Rainbow Leafies, Grape Leaves, Peas, Radnips, Rainbow Radishes, Wild Rainbow Salad Mix, Allium Bulbils.

New this week: we’ll have whole grape leaves that can be used to make traditional dishes like Dolma and other stuffed grape leave tasties. They can also be used as a part of a green smoothie mix. The peas are pretty much petered out for the season but we’ve got new plantings of Radnips and Radishes that are wowing us! There won’t be mushrooms available for the next 2 weeks.

On Facebook we posted and interesting link to a map that shows where most of our food originates from. If you love food, plants, history, and geography this is a great resource! You can find it at NPR.org.

We also came across this great resource from Epicurious – A Visual Guide to Cooking Greens (we’ve added this to the Veggies! page).

Don’t forget that we’ve got Jackie from Another Way at the farm this Saturday June 2nd doing complimentary Angel Card Readings!

We’ll leave you with pictures from around the farm this week …. enjoy!

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This broody hen hatched out several baby chicks!

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Coming soon!

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Red Cabbage beds

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An Heirloom Cherry Tomato called 42 Days, these wonders will be ready in a few short weeks!

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Collected the dried up seed pods from a large variety of Kale plants that successfully overwintered. Now we’ve got our own regionally-adapted Kale seeds!

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Strange and mysterious “eggs” found on an Onion plant. Anyone know what this is? Friend or Foe?

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A Farm Child took these pictures of Mushrooms growing in a Lettuce bed and is curious about what kind they are …. any ideas?

 

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