The only blemishes we allow on the produce we bring you are aesthetic.You may notice small, clean holes on some of the leaves which do not compromise the quality, storage life, or taste of the greens. Rather, they serve as proof that we do not spray harmful insecticides nor do we waste food that is otherwise excellent.
Sugar Snap Peas Snack on these as they are or toss them in stir-fries or salads.
Cucumbers We grew this middle eastern variety in a high tunnel to extend the season and get such an early harvest.
Collards These greens take longer to cook than others, 20-30 minutes simmered in stock, oil, or animal fat.
Bok Choi Try it raw as a veggie stick with dip or saute the ribs for about five minutes, adding the greens in for another few minutes once the crunch has softened.
Spinach This dark green full-size spinach is best for cooking into soups, dips, sautes, or casseroles- although it is tender enough for raw salads too.
Radishes These beautiful mild radishes are great for slaws, salads, tacos, stir-fries, or roasts. Try using the greens too.
Salad Mix This mix is a bit spicy with arugula, mizuna, ruby streaks baby mustards, and baby lettuce. It is triple washed and ready to eat.
Butterhead Lettuce This lettuce has a tender green head under the dark red outer leaves- all of which are edible. Check out the story of how last week’s romaine lettuce grew on the blog.
Oregano Mince this fresh herb and add it to savory dishes or sauces. Hang it upside down in a well ventilated area and dry down for weeks until it flakes for dried oregano that will store for months.
Jam We wanted to celebrate the first two weeks of the season by sharing some of our small-batch jam from last season’s fruit to complement all of these early-season greens.
HOW DID THESE VEGGIES GROW?
A Case Study in No-Till, Heirloom Romaine
The romaine lettuce in your share last week grew from seed we saved ourselves. We chose the largest, brightest looking head last season and left it untouched when we harvested all the rest. It sent up a thick stalk that bore hundred of little yellow flowers. We let the seeds form and dry right there in the field, shook them into a paper bag, and saved them tucked in a filing cabinet until this April when we placed one in each compartment of a black plastic seedling tray. A week later the seeds had sprouted, two bright green cotyledon leaves poking up above black, compost-rich potting mix.
Every April morning we watered the seedlings as they filled out the cells of their trays. Out in the field we pulled overwintered spinach that had run its' course from a 100 ft long bed in a small plot where we are experimenting with 'no-till agriculture.' Also called 'carbon farming,' this innovative, labor intensive, compost-reliant method stores carbon in the soil rather than emitting it into the atmosphere and maintains the integrity of soil microbes by avoiding disturbance. We brought the spinach plants to our fresh pile of rotting food and yard waste in the compost yard and then shoveled heaps of finished compost from 10 foot high mounds into wheel barrows, rolled them back to the now-empty spinach bed, and laid the black humus onto the soil surface. We ran a hoe over the bed, marked three evenly spaced rows, and started laying out the seedlings.
We dug small holes, plopped the seedlings in, and covered them with loose soil. We used screw drivers and twist-on connectors and large spools of drip tape, perforated tubing that allows for efficient watering, to pipe our own low-tech irrigation system through the bed. One weeding, four deep irrigation sets, and many hours of south-facing sunlight later, we deemed the romaine ready for harvest.
Last Thursday around 6:30am, we sliced through the knobs at the soil's surface to separate the lettuce heads from their roots, packed them into crates, schlepped them down to the wash station in a pickup truck, dunked them in clear cool water, and loaded them into the cooler to await your pickup that afternoon. The rest, is your family's story of Caesar salads or burger fixings.