- Bok Choy
- Eggplant or cucumbers or summer squash
- Kale, Red Russian
- Sweet pepper
- Winter squash (Acorn or Delicata)
What has already been an excessively wet summer met its fitting conclusion this week, with about 3 inches of rain during this massive storm. This is so much better than the 8-10 inches of rain that fell across southern Minnesota that it’s hard to recognize just how absurd it is to receive 3 inches of water in one day. At this point in the season, such a flood is not the problem it would have been a month or two ago. The rainfall of this season has already claimed as many of its root-vegetable victims as it likely will, so I don’t have much fear for any crops out in the field. The hard part will be waiting for the fields to dry out so that I can harvest what potatoes, parsnips, and other roots remain.
This week we welcome the return of Bok choy, this time with far fewer bug bites. The pests that bother bok choy are no fans of cold weather, and they have largely fled for points South until next season. Our Tat Soi is also doing well without pest disturbance, and will be in the boxes next week.
Because of all of the rain this week, I had to make some changes to my expected box contents. Parsnips are not any fun to dig out of mud, so I’ve included just a couple Carrots to finish off what we have in the field. Leeks have thick roots that would be so clotted with mud that I decided to hold off on them until next week in favor of storage Onions, which were already harvested. Thankfully I had enough Potatoes dug before the deluge, so they return to the box today. It’s a mixture of pinkish-purplish types, including Caribe (light purple), Purple Viking (dark purple with light bands) and Huckleberry (pink).
A couple of green things in the boxes today: Arugula has taken advantage of the cold weather, and is also less bug-nibbled than in the spring. Also, we have a small bunch of Endive in each box. This is a relative of dandelions and raddichio, and is also known as escarole (it is NOT Belgian Endive, which is better known as Chicory root). Try this raw as a salad or lightly wilted as a side.
For Winter Squash, we have either a Fordhook Acorn (tan colored, shaped like a Nerf football with ridges) or Delicata (Yellow with greenish stripes). The acorns do not look like the typical acorn squash, but their taste and utility are the same. Delicatas are unique in that their skins can and should be eaten. To cook any winter squash, preheat the oven to 375° . Slice the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Place the squash facedown in a baking dish, and fill about ¼” of the dish with water. Cook for 45-60 minutes, depending on the size of the squash. For both of the varieties this week, 45 minutes should suffice. Remove and cool, and then peel out the innards from the skin (except for delicata). Squash can be eaten alone, with brown sugar and honey, or added to other dishes (try it as a pizza topping).This week marks the likely end of Cucumbers, Summer Squash, and Basil. Their production has dropped significantly with the colder weather, so we will bid them farewell until next summer in favor of more fall crops.