Monday, July 8, 2013

July 9th and 12th: Some like it Hot

Rainy, Hot and Humid

"Romaine lettuce with a twist"

Notes on how the weather is affecting the farm:

The crops---the lettuce is growing like mad and is having a hard time knowing how to grow.  Of course the berries got a little moldy and overripe sooner than we could pick.  But most everything else is quite happy and bursting with growth.  Yeah!

The animals--the turkeys love it hot.  If they are not skipping around their pen, they are prostrate on the floor all stretched out.  The pigs don't like the heat, but the LOVE the puddles I make during their daily hose down.  The cows are happy with the rain because it makes their pasture regrow faster, although I think they themselves would be happier with less humidity. 

The farmer--she is surviving, although very hot.  It is hard to get the list done in a day because she is noticeably working at a slower pace.  Prioritizing has been difficult as the things to do increase and the excessive rain and heat keep throwing in an added hurdle. Thankfully the newly purchased AC unit for the bedroom at least gives her a full night's rest and dries her out a bit.

A garlic scape is the flowering stalk of garlic.  It emerges from the top of the plant and curls forming a yummy, juicy, garlic flavored treat.  If the scape were left on the plant, eventually the white tip at the end would form a flower (like a chive flower) and seeds.  These seeds could be used to grow more garlic, however most growers use individual cloves.  (It is easier and the plants mature faster.)  Many believe that by removing the scape before it flowers, one is allowing the plant to use more energy to grow the bulb rather than a flower.  Plus the scape tastes amazing so why not snap it off?

There are many uses for the scape--chopped raw in salads, stir fry, pesto...we like to puree it with olive oil to make a spread for sandwiches or the start to a sauté pan.

Drat!  It looks like another rainy week!  There is one variety, Jewel, 2nd row from the right, that is just starting to ripen.  Picking is harder, but still so worth it!
This week's bounty: lettuce, pac choi, Chinese cabbage, beet greens with baby beets, hakurei turnip, shell peas?....broccoli/zuchinni/fennel (pick one)...parsley, cilantro and mint
this crunchy Asian green is awesome chopped thin and used as the topper to tacos.  you can make a raw salad with it, or stir fry it--it is a great vehicle for peanut sauce...