In your box:
–Head Lettuce (“Grandpa Admire”)
–Kale (“Red Russian”)
–Strawberries (full shares)
This week’s box is nearly identical to the box you received last week, but it does look like we should have some new offerings coming ready next week once we finally get some summer heat coming our way. We also received some much-needed rain over the weekend, tallying about 2 inches of rain after 3 weeks with just minor rain events. Once the heat and humidity tick up this weekend, everything in the garden should really be off and growing (weeds included!).
Just a quick note on our philosophy of packaging within your box. We try to walk the line between over-packaged produce with way too much plastic and a chaotic mess of produce dumped into your box. We aim to use plastic bags only when necessary for freshness or organization (salad mix, baby spinach, etc.) The bags we use are recyclable and compostable. Most grocery stores now offer recycling for plastic bags so that’s a good place to look. The bags we use are also biodegradable and can go in any municipal composting program. They require very warm temperatures to break down quickly, so if they go in your backyard composter they might take a few years to really break down. Even in our farm’s mid-sized compost pile it often takes two years to properly return to earth.
We have enough of the pesto for one more go-around in your box today, but unfortunately this is it for our free food hand-outs this year! Thanks again to Freak Flag Foods for the samples and be sure to look for all of their sauces at your local health food store.
The first crop dud this year is unfortunately also many people’s favorite: strawberries. Our berry patch has suffered a triple assault: first the harsh winter that killed off several plants and depleted the planting, then a wet spring that brought out more weeds than I could keep up with, and then several days of rain and clouds that fostered mold on many of the plants and berries. The result is a pathetic harvest and a disappointed berry picker. We did have enough for the full shares and I will give the strawberry bed one more week to see if we can salvage any more berries. This spring I did add another large strawberry planting and that crop will be ready for next year, so I’ll be able to plow under this year’s disaster and hope for better luck next year. The good news is that our gooseberries and currants are looking healthy and heavily laden, so if we have enough of those fruits they’ll be coming your way in a couple weeks.
One new crop in your box is Kale. This week’s variety is “Red Russian,” which has won me over with its hands-off pest resistance. If you’re unfamiliar with kale, this is a versatile green with great nutritional benefits and no wrong way to use it up (except in oatmeal or as an ice cream topping, I suppose). To use it, first remove the stem and compost it. The leaves can then be chopped fine and are great mixed in to lasagna, quiche, burritos, or just about any other recipe that needs some color and a healthy kick. It’s also fine to eat raw, though some will find the leaves a bit too chewy. We like to wilt the chopped leaves over a frying pan with olive oil. Add the leaves to the warm oil and stir constantly as it wilts and gets crispy, usually for about 4-5 minutes. This makes a great side dish or a crisy green you can add to any recipe.
This week also brings our last crop of Bok Choy for the spring, although we will have another offering in the fall (bok choy is not a fan of summer heat). This week’s variety is slightly different from the “Black Summer” cultivar you received last week. The stems on this “Joy Choi” are crispier and more elongated, but it can be used just like the other variety.
Don’t forget to return your empty box to your delivery site. Thanks!
Also, please note that next week is the 4th of July holiday. Since the crops don’t observe holidays, I’m not really able to either. I will still deliver all the boxes as usual next week unless I hear from you, so please let me know if you’re away.
Expected next week: Salad mix, spinach, turnips, kohlrabi, fennel, head lettuce, green onions, and garlic scapes.
Greek Omelet: https://foxandfawnfarm.com/2015/09/15/greek-omelet/
Spinach and Bok Choy Wilted Greens: https://foxandfawnfarm.com/2019/06/25/spinach-and-bok-choy-recipe/