Hello members and friends,
We are glad to be out of our rain suits and making some headway against the weeds that were much invigorated by last week’s persistent rains. At Four Winds, we do all of our plant care and weed cultivation by hand and with hand tools. Dry, sunny days make for the most efficient weeding, since we can use our tools most efficiently to kick up weeds and let them dessicate in the sun. You can see Wes in the photo above using a handy tool, the wheel hoe, to this end. Speaking of farming (this is a terrible segue), I wanted to tell you all a brief story about my spirited 14-year-old sister, Wendy. In one of her classes, her teacher asked if anyone in the class knew a farmer, and my sister was the sole hand raised. When she told everyone that it’s her sister who is a farmer, she was met with a mass of confused faces. Later, at lunch a classmate asked her why her sister farms, and informed her that that’s a stupid job. Wendy got angry and told this classmate that the food he ate was grown and picked by farmers, and his response was that no, food was grown and picked by machines, “duh!” Ever since, Wendy seems to be on a pro-farmer crusade. When I remember this, I am heartened each time I hear about a new school garden starting up because more kids need to know that carrots grow in the dirt, not in some fluorescent robot cave, and they gain so much joy from pulling one out of the ground that they seeded and watered. It always delights both Wes and me when you all bring your kids to pick up your veggies, because even if they don’t totally get the connection yet, we think they sense that this food came from real, live people, not too far from where they live.
Onto the share! We’re hoping you all are enjoying the many salads we assume you’re eating–just envision all the nutrients coursing through your increasingly invigorated systems! As we enter the second half of June, we get into some fleshier delights, along with the greens you’ve been getting. This week, we have two types of turnips as well as kohlrabi, which might be a mystery to some of you. Alas, though it looks like a little sputnik, all you have to do is chop off the leaves (which you can eat), peel the bulb and eat it raw (sliced with dip or hummus or pesto!), grate it into a slaw (on the “Recipes” page), or bake it in little cubes. The new Asian green, tatsoi, is a lot like spinach, and you can use it similarly. Then, there are the garlic scapes. These are the flower stalks that shoot up out of hardneck garlic this time of year, and we cut them off so that the plants focus their energy on the bulbs instead of the flowers. You can use the whole thing, chopped up into little pieces and tossed in a stir-fry or any other dish that calls for garlic, blend it as a pesto, and even grill it. These are a special seasonal treat. As a last note, for those of you who ordered strawberries, we will have a list at pickup, and please don’t forget to take them!
This week’s share:
- Garlic Scapes
- Purple Top Turnips (great for cooking and baking, but we also like them fresh)
- Hakurei Salad Turnips (fresh all the way)
- Salad Mix
- Kohlrabi -or- 2 small green cabbages
SCAPES ON THE GRILL
- Super easy! Just toss the scapes with oil and your own eclectic mixes of herbs and spices (we kept it simple with garlic powder and salt, but turmeric would be a great addition to that), then pile them on the grill. It’s easiest if you have a pair of tongs, then you can just snatch up the whole pile and turn it as needed. The scapes are ready when they are a little soft and crunchy, browned (or blackened if you’re into that) on the outside. Better than french fries.
DIPS FOR RAW TURNIPS
- Curry Dip – 1/4 cup plain yogurt or sour cream; 1 tsp curry powder; 1 Tbs minced raw onion; 1/4 tsp sea or Kosher salt; 1 Tbs lemon juice; cayenne and/or ground cumin (optional and to taste). Mix thoroughly. Keeps for two weeks, covered, in the fridge.
- Sesame soy dip – 1/4 cup mayonnaise; 1 Tbs sesame seeds, toasted and cooled; 1-2 Tbs tamari or soy sauce. Mix it up, keeps for two weeks in the fridge, covered.
- Spicy Salsa Dip – 1/4 plain yogurt or sour cream; 2 Tbs good salsa; Tabasco or hot sauce to taste; salt to taste; 1 Tbs choopped cilantro. Mix it up, keeps for 8 days in the fridge, covered.