One big, foggy cloud outside this morning. We had just enough rain yesterday to keep us wet throughout the day. It was a nice day though, the kind that reminds me that fall is serious and winter is right around the corner. Once, in the middle of the afternoon, I suddenly thought about Thanksgiving. It's only 6 weeks away. It's suppose to be warm and sunny today and then maybe more rain. No complaining about rain.
We're taking care of the last crops to come in for the CSA. We picked a few more apples but missed the better part of the harvest of the late season apples; can't do it all. We still have sweet potatoes in the ground. We'll dig the first of those this week- maybe some of them today. Then they have to cure for about a week to turn the stored starches into the sugars that make them sweet.
With all the rain the collards have exploded. Kale will be ready soon and the lettuce is big enough to pick. It (the lettuce that is) isn't very sweet yet. The cooler weather will make it sweeter but at the moment it's better described as semi-sweet or almost sweet. We're including some this week.
Alright, I've held off telling you as long as I can stand. We have a surprise for you this week. It was an accident as great surprises tend to be. Earlier this year we finished picking 2 rows of green beans and then mowed them and tilled them into the soil. We never planted anything else in that area and eventually, beans from those plants sprouted and began to grow. We never thought the beans would actually produce fruit before the cold weather got to them. Last week however we discovered that those beans are over achievers! They have indeed produced loads of great green beans. This week everyone gets two pounds of late season green beans and boy are they sweet. They are big and I've found they take a little more time to steam but they are very tasty. Enjoy.
On Saturday, October 24th we'll be inoculating oak logs with Shiitake mushroom spawn. What's that you say? You haven't yet completed your on farm project for the year? What a great opportunity. Everyone is welcome. We'll be cutting logs to length, drilling holes in them, putting in the spawn plugs and then sealing the logs with wax. There's a job for all age groups and skill sets. Please let me know though if you'd like to participate so I can plan accordingly with tools and equipment.
Mixed Greens (go for strong salads or saute)
Green and Red Sweet Peppers
Mild Peppers (the peppers formerly know as hot)
Apples (just a few)
I need some recipes people!
Roasted Radishes with Soy Sauce and Toasted Sesame Seed
(Makes 3-4 servings, recipe only slightly adapted from Vegetables Every Day by Jack Bishop.)
5 large radishes, trimmed and cut into thumbnail-sized pieces
1 1/2 T roasted peanut oil
1-2 T soy sauce (I used about 1 1/2 T)
2 green onions (scallions) sliced thin
1 T sesame seeds, toasted in a dry pan
Preheat oven to 425 F. Wash radishes, trim ends, peel if needed, and cut into same size pieces. Cut green onions into thin slices.
Toss radishes with peanut oil, then roast about 20 minutes, stirring one or two times. When radishes are tender and starting to brown, remove from oven, toss with soy sauce to coat and mix in green onion slices. Put back in oven and roast about 5 minutes more.
During final five minutes roasting time, put the sesame seed in a dry pan and toast over hot stove for about 2 minutes, or until starting to brown. Remove radishes from oven, place in serving bowl and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds. Serve hot.
Aaron's Rather Lazy But Yummy Steamed Collards Recipe
1 Tablespoon Butter
Salt and Pepper
Remove stem and rib from collard leaf. Cut up into 2 inch squares. Steam for about 8 minutes or until very tender. Put in a bowl with butter. Salt and pepper to taste.
Hot Wilted Greens
1 thick slice smoky bacon
½ T olive oil
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 medium sweet red onion
3 T chicken stock
2 T balsamic vinegar
1 quart mixed piquant leafy greens (such as arugula, endive or mustard greens)
¼ cup toasted pecans
In a large, deep skillet or wok over medium heat, cook bacon until crispy. Remove and drain on paper towels. Crumble and reserve. Add olive oil to bacon drippings in skillet, heat and add garlic and onions.
Sauté for 3-4 minutes, until onions and garlic are softened. Stir in chicken stock and vinegar.
Add greens and mix. Stir-fry for 2-3 minutes, until leaves are coated. Cover and cook several minutes more, until leaves are wilted and cooked tender-crisp.
Top with bacon and chopped pecans. Serve hot.