Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Harvest Newsletter

Greetings from the Garden!  This week's CSA box has greens for salad or braising, leeks, garlic,squash or pumpkin, potatoes, black radish, rutabaga, turnips, cabbage, shallots. winter tomatoes,  and carrots.

Field Notes. Unseasonably cold weather signals that the season for outdoor greens is coming to a close.  We grow micro greens in winter and have green storage cabbage, too.  Ken has been making cultured vegetables: sauerkraut, gingered carrots, fall roots, and beets.  These vegetables plus salt create probiotics and preserve the vitamin C that would be lost with heat in cooking or canning. 

He has been planting greens for next month as well.  With the short days plants start and grow slowly.  Organic grower Eliot Coleman calls this the Persephone season after the Greek goddess. She was abducted by Hades of the Underworld and so her mother Demeter, goddess of the harvest sets soil and crops to rest and sleep until her return in spring.  Coleman contends that little has enough light to grow, but some plants can be stored for winter use.

I have finished sorting seeds, and doing an inventory of what we have and soon will be ordering for next season.  I have received a few responses to my request for preferences.  Those lists help us prioritize  what to grow the next season.  We really appreciate the feedback.  Thank you.

From the Kitchen.  This year presented some real challenges.  We got late rain and the winter squash is not keeping as well as it usually does.   Ken has cooked, pureed and packed in ziploc bags for the freezer.  We have had squash pie a couple times and squash soup.  We both love squash and its beta carotene is an added health benefit

Ken also got some onions in the dehydrator as they, too, were not keeping as well as usual.  

Thank goodness for leeks.  They are sweet, smooth and can be used in any onion recipe.  I like to saute onions and add chopped braising greens or cabbage so it wilts and then add cream or vinegar or a dressing.  Years ago someone shared a recipe with sauteed onion or leek, wilted greens tossed with pasta and topped with a spicy dressing like Caesar or Italian garlic dressing.  They  also added olives or nuts.

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