Blue Heron Farm Journal July 13th 2009

So what’s happening on the farm this week?
Week 6: This week, Christine and Sadie are off to Cape Cod for a few days of vacation with her family. They headed off this morning for some much needed r&r on the beach. Sadie will get to hang out with all her aunts and uncles and nana, and Christine will get to just be. I am not alone, however, because Christine’s best friend from grade school, Tammy, is up here for the week helping me (Adam) to keep up on the farm work. I think we will actually have a chance to catch up and get ahead with some of our planting and weeding, so long as we don’t keep getting buckets of rain so often!

Speaking of rain, everyone has been asking how its affected things on the farm, so here goes: More than anything, the rain has made it hard to get new successions of things like lettuce and arugula in the ground, as well as a variety of seeds for things like carrots, snap beans, and herbs. Fortunately, we got a lot of stuff in the ground before the weather turned so wet- we should have lots of beans, some potatoes, more beets, and more onions for you soon. With so much water and not so much sun or warm weather, our cukes, squash, eggplant, peppers, and tomatoes are growing slower and are not as tough. In fact, many growers in the Northeast are worried about “early blight”, the same fungal disease that caused the infamous potato famine in Ireland. We have had a few plants that looked suspicious that we yanked and destroyed. We will also have the tissue examined by UVM’s plant diagnostic clinic, just to make sure. The wind has done a number on the water logged squash plants. Also, we simply have been watering and watering a bunch of seedling trays of plants that should have been in the ground 3 or 4 weeks ago, but we have not been able to plant them. If you till clay soil when its wet, you can really mess it up. The rule is that if you can squeeze the soil and roll it in your hand and it holds the shape, like clay, then its too wet to work. So we wait and wait for the sun and drying wind.
Thanks to Gail for helping out this week with the peas! And again,to all, thanks for being part of our farm! Peace, Adam Farris, Christine Bourque, and Sadie Farris
What’s in the share this week: Lettuce Mix, Shelling Peas, Fresh-Pulled Garlic bulbs, Rainbow Chard, Summer Squash, Zucchini, Oriental Eggplant, and Cabbage. CHECK US OUT ON THE WEB and LEAVE COMMENTS TOO:

Eggs for sale
We have the pretty girls’ eggs for sale – these are free-range, certified organic chicken eggs with the brightest yellow yolks you ever seen. $5.00 a dozen.

How to cook a tender, Oriental eggplant

-Eat it rawJ
-Slice in half, put olive oil on it, and put on the barbeque grill or a skillet, until brown on both sides and soft in the middle.
-slice and put in stirfry
-slice, dip in egg then flour/cornmeal (to coat) with a dab of salt and pepper put in a skillet with hot oil and fry it….mini eggplant parm – yum!

Christine’s Lunchtime Fried Eggplant

Eggplant sliced in oblong circles
Egg – 2 to 3 beaten in a separate bowl
Cornmeal, salt and pepper in a bowl together
Cast iron skillet
Oil to cover the bottom on the pan

Dip sliced eggplant (skin and all) into egg batter and then roll in the cornmeal. Batter enough of the slices and place in hot pan with oil. Let them sizzle and then after they turn tan to brown on one side, turn over and cook the next side. When all sides are brown, remove from pan and place on paper toweled plate to drain excess oil. EnjoyJ

Pirjati Zelje Braised Cabbage from Mediterranean Vegetables by Clifford Wright
Mr Wright’s notes on this recipe:Cabbage is a very popular vegetable in the Balkans. It is served raw, in the form of sauerkraut, and cooked in a variety of ways. In the northern part of the former Yugoslavia, cabbage may be cooked with sour cream or tossed with noodles and smoked bacon. In Bosnia or Montenegro, to the south and closer to Greece, cabbage is cooked with tomatoes. This recipe for braised cabbage from Slovenia (in the north hear Hungary) is typically served as a bed for a roast duckling.
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil2 bay leaves1 Tablespoons tomato paste1 cup dry white wine1 2-pound head green cabbage, cored and sliced as thin as vermicelli15 black peppercorns8 juniper berries, lightly crushed1 teaspoon dried thyme1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juiceS & P to taste
1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bay leaves, and cook them until they begin to sizzle. Reduce the heat to medium and very carefully add the tomato paste and wine, which will spurt and splatter rather dramatically. Cook for a minute, then add the cabbage, peppercorns, juniper berries, and thyme. Mix the cabbage so it is covered with sauce.
2. Add the lemon juice and continue to braise the cabbage over medium heat until it softens, 6 to 8 minutes. Reduce the heat to low, season with S and P, and cook until the cabbage is completely soft, about 45 minutes. Correct the seasoning (with S and P) and serve hot
1/4 cup1/2 cup1/2 cup3 tbsp.1 1/2 tsp.1 tbsp.1 tsp.7-8 cupsGarnishes:1/2 cup
peanut butterhot waterplus 1T rice vinegar or cider vinegarbrown sugar or honeysaltsoy saucesesame oilshredded green cabbagecrushed red pepper to tastepeanutsgrated carrotsminced fresh cilantro
In a large bowl, mash together the peanut butter and hot water until they form a uniform mix. Mix in vinegar, sugar or honey, salt, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Add the cabbage in 2 cup increments, mixing well after each addition. Add red pepper to taste. Cover the bowl tightly, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, visiting it every hour or 2 to give it a good stir. Sprinkle the peanuts on top right before serving. Serve with a slotted spoon. Serves 4-6 Still Life with Menu Cookbook, Mollie Katzen

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