Wednesday, December 12, 2012

CSA Newsletter

Greetings from the Garden!  This box has salad, micro, and braising greens, the last tomato, Brussels sprouts, beets, carrots, rutabagas, potatoes, squash, black radishes, red onions, shallots, sage, and  garlic.

Field Notes.  Snow!  This is GREAT news for farmers.  We had warm temperatures and the ground was not frozen, so every drop of this moisture will slowly go into the soil.  The moisture and more moderate temperatures will promote microbial action in the soil.  In extreme cold the microbes, worms and every other living thing goes deeper or dies.  Snow insulates the ground so the frost doesn't go down so deep, and we can get into the garden earlier next spring.

Loyal has built a goat transport for his goats so they can journey to get bred.  The goats will be there a few weeks and return home.  If all goes well we will have kids and goat milk in spring.

Ken and Loyal have been wrapping up several outdoor tasks and getting everything off the ground before snow - otherwise we won't find it until spring!  There are indoor jobs as well - Loyal is shelling dry corn as I type and Ken is making a squash pie. 

 I have caught up the bookkeeping and next I do a seed inventory.  Then Loyal and I do the seed order.  He is already scouring catalogs for new, improved, and heirloom varieties.  The push is on as the catalogs have begun to arrive and last year my January order resulted in some back orders and other items were out of stock

Ken and I took a couple days off away from the farm.  It is great to return with fresh eyes and new ideas.  Thank you, Loyal!

From the Kitchen.  We are excited about the greens in your box.  We are experimenting with the various areas under plastic and micro greens and root cellaring cabbage and Brussels sprouts.  This year's Brussels sprouts and black radishes reflect the drought - they are smaller, but have great flavor.  I usually combine Brussels sprouts with carrots.  I cut carrots julienne or matchsticks and steam for about five minutes.  Then I add the Brussels sprouts and continue to steam for no more than four minutes.  Brussels sprouts are best al dente rather than mushy!  I top with butter and herbs like thyme or a cream sauce or a cheese sauce.

The small black radishes are known as the most alkaline food - they are really potent.  I often grate and add vinegar.  Ken uses them in kim chee combinations.  The black skin and white flesh is beautiful.

Sage is great when sealed in biscuits, stuffing, egg dishes.  Recently I made dumplings with sage and they were a real hit.  

Happy Holidays to you all.  Thank you for your support.  We welcome feedback.  We wish you a great year to come!

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