A Blog and Farmcast About a Vegetable Farm and Then Some
It’s time again for Skyline Farm and Deri Farm to host Plow Day. It’s hard to believe it’s the 5th year for this event. Check out the Deri Farm page for plow day at: http://derifarm.com/plow for more details. This year we are starting at 9:30 and run until about 1:30.
Each year we add a few more activities. This year there are going to be the regular plowing and harrowing demonstrations as well as blacksmithing, goat-cheese making, food preservation and more. Also I think the beloved Peanut Butter will be making an appearance for kids to take a pony ride from 10-11 for $5–incidentally, that money goes towards Skyline.
I hope to see you all. I may do some farm tours. It will depend on how busy I am running around.
This is the second time I have put some vegetables in the temporary farmstand in the ell. Sometime in the next month or so, I hope to build a real farmstand with a refrigerated display case. Given the quantity I’m harvesting now, the refrigerator in the ell is working well.
This week there are a couple of exciting items at the farm stand. Look beets and cucumbers! So, the items in the fridge right now are:
- hakurei turnips
The cucumbers are sort of an experiment in the greenhouse. I’m trying to use some of the vertical space in the new greenhouse. I’ve put the cucumbers up on a rack I made using some scrap from around the farm. Right now they hang down about two feet, but I hope they will eventually hang down low enough to nicely shade the seeding area. I’ll try to post a picture soon. For now, here are some pictures of what’s in the refrigerator in the ell:
Posted by Deri Farm | Filed under Winter Squash
This year I have grown thirteen varieties of winter squash (excluding any pumpkins.) As I continue to give them out in the fall shares, I will update this page with the varieties that are available. Rather than list recipes for each one, I’m going to help you identify them and give a little information so that you can find recipes on line.
This variety is becoming more and more popular. It is 5-10 inches long with green stripes that run the length of it. One of the best ways to eat it is to just cut it in half, remove seeds and bake it either plain or with some cinnamon. The skin can be eaten. In addition to just baking, I have seen it in soups and stuffed!
Much like the delicata squash, sweet dumpling can be eaten whole. Because of their shape, they are well suited for stuffing.
The most interesting part of spaghetti squash is it’s spaghetting like textured flesh. It should be a deep yellow or orange color when ripe, otherwise the taste may be a bit bland. I’ve seen people cut them in half, bake them, add butter and maybe a little maple syrup and then just use a fork to twirl the flesh out like spaghetti.
Sunshine is in the buttercup category. It has a sweet, meaty and dry flesh. The orange flesh color stays bright when baked or cooked. This squash makes a great pie and is excellent in soups.
I think the most common way I have seen acorn squash cooked it to cut it in half and bake it, but I have also heard that it is tasty in a “pumpkin” pie. The flesh is yellow and is slightly fibrous. The skin is tough, so don’t eat that. It should store for a couple of months.
Although carnival looks similar to sweet dumpling, it is more like an acorn but used like a butternut. The skin is firm like acorn. Also, notice the coloring is a little different from sweet dumpling and that the bottom comes to a point, while sweet dumpling is either flat or starts to curve back inwards. It is often noted that the flesh tastes like sweet potato and butternut squash.
This is a tasty, simple and relatively quick recipe for turnips. I found the original recipe in The Victory Garden Cookbook by Marian Morash.
2 pounds of turnips
3 T of butter
1/2 C broth (beef or vegetable)
salt & pepper
Peel turnips. Unless you are using small turnips, you will want to cut the turnips in to smaller pieces. The original recipe calls for forming the larger turnips in to ovals, but I didn’t bother doing that. Instead, I just cut them in to slices about 3/4 inch thick and in pieces about 1 1/2 – 2 inches across.
Melt butter in to a saute pan that is large enough to hold the turnips in one layer. Over medium high heat, turn the turnips in the butter to coat them. Lightly brown sides, 5-8 minutes. Turn heat to low, add broth and then cover and let simmer, stirring occasionally. They will brown and glaze as they cook. The turnips will absorb the flavor of the stock. When they are cooked through (about 5-8 minutes) remove the cover, turn the heat to medium and reduce the broth quickly to glaze. Season with salt and pepper.
Posted by Deri Farm | Filed under Just for Fun
Last week I enjoyed a wonderful supper with the fine people of Sweet Peas Podcast (http://ritefoodandcompany.com/Podcast/) followed up with a delightful conversation about CSAs and farming. That conversation was recorded and turned in to a podcast (see episode #60.)
Sweet Peas Podcast tells a great story of the family’s journey in eating well in a way that is healthy for not just the consumer, but the environment and the community. Also, Lisa Marie is developing a line of wonderful chocolate…so keep your eyes out for what she has coming out soon. She does have a good deal on the chocolate “bark” until the product launch in September!
This is a tasty recipe submitted by CSA shareholder, Susan. She says, “this is a recipe that I adjusted from Yotam Ottolenghi’s cookbook Plenty. Not only does it taste great but is a nice burst of color at the dinner table. Super quick, too.” The recipe uses several ingredients available at Deri Farm including cabbage, cilantro and jalapeno.
Dressing: mix the following ingredients in a small bowl and set aside for later.
juice from 1 lime
1 Tbsp maple syrup
2 Tbsp olive oil
3 Tbsp aged balsamic vinegar
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes or to taste
1/2 tsp black sesame seeds
7 leaves of green cabbage- finely shredded
1/2 red cabbage- finely shredded
1 mango – cut into chunks or thin strips
1 jalapeno- deseeded and finely sliced
about 20 pistachios or peanuts
6-10 mint leaves- roughly chopped
appox. 20 cilantro leaves- roughly chopped
Place all ingredients in a large bowl. Add dressing and toss together.
This beautiful vegetable is a variation on cauliflower. It has an almost alien appearance with the fractal patterns in the florets. It is quite tasty roasted, steamed or eaten raw.
I posted a great recipe roasting romanesco, fennel and leeks: Roasted Romanesco with fennel and leeks.
I adapted a recipe I found on epicurious that uses cauliflower: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Roasted-Cauliflower-with-Onions-and-Fennel-237336. I have replaced the cauliflower with romanesco.
1 head of romanesco, cut into 1 inch florets
1 bunch of baby leeks or you can use 2 onions, cut in to1 inch sections
2 fennel bulbs, cut lengthwise and cut up in and then cut up in to sections about the same size as the romanesco florets
5 garlic cloves
Heat oven to 425 degrees. Toss romanesco in 2 T of olive oil in a bowl. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Add oily romanesco and sauté until it starts to brown. Transfer to a glass, rimmed baking sheet.
Heat 2 more T of olive oil in the skillet. Now brown the leeks or onions for a couple of minutes on each side. Transfer leeks to baking dish with romanesco. Finally, sauté fennel in 2 T of oil until it browns slightly and transfer to baking dish.
Roast vegetables in the oven until they are caramelized. This takes about 25 minutes.
Posted by Deri Farm | Filed under Just for Fun
Julian really wants to help around the farm. He’s only 17 months old, but is very serious about his work. His favorite chore is to push the dolly around the gravel driveway…in his bare feet…up hill!
Peas are a great pick-your-own item. Kids love to walk down the rows picking and eating…now that I think about it, so do adults! I just wanted to post a quick note on how to determine if a pea is ready to be picked.
There are two types of peas we have for PYO: shell and snap. The pop/shell on the shell peas are very tough, so you need to pop them open and strip out the peas. Snap peas can be eaten shell and all, but I do recommend stripping the strings to make them a bit more tender. When peas are not quite ripe, they will look thin and you may see small indentations where the peas are growing. Below you can see the pea pod is somewhat thin:
When a shell pea is ripe, you will see the peas bulging out the sides and the pod as a whole will look much more plump:
A snap pea looks very plump, but if the peas are starting to bulge out the sides, then it is overripe! Also, notice the dark green stripe along the length of the pod: