Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Big Red Farm Stand - Wed. June 12 & Sat. June 15 (1pm-6pm)

First, a big thank-you to everyone who stopped by our table in Irwin on Friday!  You were patient, you were generous, and you made our first farm stand a big success.  We were so excited to see for the first time how much interest there is in what we're doing -- and we hope you'll all stick with us through the season!  

Because I just know you've all been sitting around wondering what we ended up doing with all those salad greens and lettuce, I'm delighted to tell you that local restaurants Chambers Walk, Acacia and Wild Flour Bakery each bought some, so if you ate at any of those places over the weekend, perhaps you ate a salad grown at the Big Red Farm!  (Also, the Morrow family has been eating quite a bit of lettuce in the past couple days.)


Red Oak Leaf Lettuce
Since these early harvests are certainly going to continue to skew greens-heavy, I wanted to share my current favorite salad dressing with you all this week.  It's nothing special; most of you probably already make something along these lines, but I think it's worth passing along to those of you who don't.  I only recently found out myself about the magical properties of mustard!  We keep a half-pint jar of this stuff on the kitchen counter, and refill it as needed.  It's simple, quick, delicious, and perfect for dressing just about any kind of salad you can think of.  (Simple Balsamic Vinaigrette)

Garlic Scape
This week's second recipe features the ever-more-popular garlic scape.  Garlic scapes are the flower stalks produced by hardneck garlic varieties (there is also softneck garlic, which is the kind you see in braids, but it doesn't produce a scape).  If they're harvested before they bloom, they can be used anywhere you would use traditional garlic, as well as in stir-fries, salads, etc.  Garlic scapes are very flavorful, but a little milder than a clove of garlic.  Grab a couple scapes and a bunch of basil at the farm stand this week for the summer's first fresh pesto!  (Fresh Garlic Scape Pesto)


Water in the upper field
Remember how we moved the faculty/staff barbecue and the first Big Red Farm Stand into Irwin last Friday because of the rain?  Well, we got 4.5 inches that day, which is an awful lot of rain to get in 24 hours.  Then along came Monday, with another inch or so of rain, and the condition of our fields now ranges from "soggy" to "lake."  Tractor work is impossible, and in certain areas, it's not even practical to walk into the field.

We've had enough of these heavy rains this spring that we've gotten a little behind on our planting; big healthy seedlings are waiting to go into the ground, but first beds need to be prepped, and that can't happen until the fields dry out.  Getting a tractor stuck is no fun; getting two tractors stuck, for instance trying to pull the first stuck one out with the second one, is a disaster!

However, the crops that are in the fields already seem to be mostly benefiting from the warm weather and abundant water.  (Of course, so are the weeds, but that's a story for another day.)  This week we hope to have the following available on Wednesday and Saturday from 1-6pm:
  • baby bok choy - 3 for $1.00
  • baby lettuce mix - $2.50 bag
  • basil - $1.50 bunch
  • beets (limited quantity) - $2.50 bunch
  • eggs - $5.00 dozen (limit 1 dozen per customer)
  • garlic scapes (limited quantity) - 25 cents each
  • kohlrabi (limited quantity) - $1.00 each
  • lettuce - $2.50 head
  • radishes (limited quantity) - $2.00 bunch
  • rainbow chard - $2.50 bunch
  • sugar snap peas - $2.50 pint

Going North on 206, turn right at the Community Garden, and follow the gravel road back to the left.  You'll see signs for parking.  Bring your bags and walk through the woods to the barn (there will be signs for that too).

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