>THIS WEEK’S SUBSCRIBER MENU:
• Shelling Peas
• Green Garlic
• Beet Greens OR Spinach
• Napa Cabbage OR Bok Choi
• Mixed Herbs (Marjoram, Basils, Fennel) OR Shungiku
Strawberries from our neighbor, T & M Berries
(If you want to u-pick there, call (253) 852-0718 for their hours. Strawberry season doesn’t last long!)
U-PICK THIS WEEK:
(The best times for u-pick are on our farm pick-up days: Wednesdays between 2:00 and 7:00pm and Saturdays between noon and 5:00pm. Remember, subscribers can pick as much as they can find for free!)
• Sugar Snap Peas
• Green Onions
A few people who were at the farm at the right moment last Wednesday were lucky to see our brand-new, just-born calf! Our sweet, Dexter milk cow, Beauty delivered her new little girl Wednesday afternoon. She’s since been named Juniper, and we are 99% sure she will stay here with our little herd. You can visit the herd in our new temporary pasture by the big greenhouse. They are busy doing their job of eating a cover crop of cereal rye and field peas, and at the same time they are adding much needed nutrients to the poorest piece of soil on our farm in the form of manure. That spot is very sandy, so nutrients leach through it like a sieve when the rain comes. The roots of the cover crop will add humus and organic matter, and the manure will add nutrients. Then we can plant crops for winter harvest there in August and they should thrive. I will be milking Beauty at about 8:00pm every day, just in case you are in the area and are interested. The black cow with the red halter is not the father, he’s a steer and is about 14 months old, soon to be beef for our freezer.
The peas have finally fattened up and are sweet and juicy, just in time to harvest for this week. The shell peas always dry up first, so we’re picking through them this week, and next week when the sugar snaps are fat and sassy we’ll start working on them. Don’t forget to u-pick! If you can’t make it during pick-up hours at the farm, we’ll have signs up to guide you to the pea patch. Please only pick the row(s) we’ve marked—we’ve chosen the rows for you that are most easily-accessible, and those that are easiest to see the pods.
Our kids love peas, but only raw, and specifically only if they have picked them themselves. And, no matter how I try, I can’t get them to eat sugar snap peas. They always insist on shelling them, and I’m not wasting sugar snaps on them if they won’t eat the pods. Cosmo especially is a great “helper” when I’m picking shelling peas. He scoots down the row in front of me. Usually he will pick his own “fat ones”, but sometimes he swipes them from my bucket. I should be proud that they know where the peas are on the farm, and that they know how to find food for themselves.
All of our transplanted herbs (various basils, marjoram, fennel, shungiku, etc.) needed to be pinched back this week so they will get bushy and productive. Weve chosen to put together a little bag of mixed herbs for you instead of tossing them. Use them to make a mixed-herb pesto, or lovely salad dressing, or throw them in with your cooking greens. If you’ve chosen Shungiku instead, you can saute it with greens, or put it in a salad—many years ago I had it floating in a bowl of clear soup in Japan.
SPECIAL NOTE FOR WEDNESDAY FOLKS:
Due to the holiday next week, we will be doing on-farm pickup on Thursday, July 5 instead of the 4th. Please make sure not to come Wednesday! Regular pickup hours: 2:00-dusk.
BOK CHOI or NAPA CABBAGE WITH GINGERY BUTTER
2 medium Choi, sliced into 1 inch strips
6 tbsp. Butter
2 tbsp. Soy Sauce or Tamari
1 tbsp. Fresh Ginger, grated
1 clove Garlic, minced
Salt & Pepper
1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the choi and cook until tender but still crisp, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain in a colander and immediately run under cold water. Drain well.
2. Melt the butter in a large skiller over medium heat. Add the soy sauce,ginger, garlic, and choi. Cook, stirring constantly, until the choi is well coted and heated through.
3. Remove the skillet from heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.
And, just in case you’re not a big salad fan:
3 to 4 small heads Lettuce, rinsed under running water, tough outer leaves removed
1/2 tsp. Salt
1-2 tbsp. Butter
1. Tie a piece of string around each head of lettuce, just tightly enough to hold the leaves together and promote even cooking.
2. Brnig 2 quarts of water to a boil, add the salt and reduce the heat to a simmer. Add the lettuce heads and boil for 3 minutes.
3. Drain the lettuces in a colander and let cool. When cool enough to handle, gently squeeze them in your hands to remove any excess water. Remove the string.
4. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the lettuce heads and cook until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Continue to cook, turning them carefully, for another 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.