In Your Share This Week
- Jalapeno Peppers
Every summer we try and do a salsa week, and here it is! We time a cilantro seeding with when the jalapenos and tomatoes generally peak so you can have a right proper pico de gallo, just add some lime and salt. We also try and feature corn together with the salsa week, but alas, it isn’t quite ready yet…its still needs several more days before its truly at its peak- so you can look forward to a helping of corn next week.
Beets, Chioggia: These pretty pink Italian heirloom beets are even more amazing when you slice them open! The inner rings alternate between a vibrant pink and white. I also think the Chioggia beets have a slightly more mild and light flavor than regular red beets. Its thought that this variety dates back to at least the early 1800’s, and arrived in America by the end of the century.
Cilantro: We like to harvest and distribute our cilantro with the roots still attached. Normally you find the roots have been removed in the grocery store, which is a bummer because 1) they are edible 2) they are delicious and 3) they help the cilantro plant store for longer in your refrigerator. You can do one of two things here- you can either wrap the cilantro in a bag and keep it in the fridge, or place it in a jar of water on the counter top like a bouquet. If it goes into the fridge, make sure its damp but not wet. If you put wet cilantro in a bag, it magically turns into blackened slime in no time.
Potatoes, RedGold: We had a roller coaster of reactions as we harvested the last of our RedGold potatoes. We thought they looked great as new potatoes, but then when we dug up more of the tubers a few weeks ago, they were in very, very poor condition- scab, early blight, late blight, and just about every other malady out there. We were really bummed and thought the rest of the RedGold crop was going to be a total loss (we still have to dig the tubers out of the ground one way or another, otherwise they become a nasty, nasty weed- pretty much rendering a field unusable), but when we dug the remnants we were delighted to see that they were in pretty decent shape! This is likely the last time you will see RedGold for the season, next we will move on to Yukon Golds. Note: these RedGolds have some amount of scab (it looks like little specs of black/brown soil, and doesn’t seem to want to come off). Its OK to eat, but if you prefer, you can either peel the potato, or scrub it under a little running water with a brush.
Around the Farm
This week (today, in fact) marked the very last greenhouse seeding for the season! Its hard to believe that we’re already thinking about this, but the days are getting shorter and the sunlight less intense. This obviously slows the growth rate of the plants and puts on a more extended timeline than earlier in the season. The general rule of thumb is that most growth stops by October 31. By that point in time, there is too few hours of light to promote plant growth…add in our cool maritime temperatures and notorious overcast grey skies and you have a recipe for plant growth to come to a grinding halt. Its a very tricky game to time the seeding of various crops correctly for overwintering production- you don’t want the plants going into winter too large or too small, and you can also expect higher culls and losses as well. But we think winter production and storage crops are a critical part of helping to sustain our local food system and keep us all eating local, all year long!