Category Archives: vegetable

Kickin’ Off the 2015 Season with our First Blog from Alex

It is hard to imagine that spring is almost here having received one of our biggest snowfalls of the year no less than a week ago.  But with the sun shining, the snow melting, and an extra hour of daylight…here we go! 

The seeding of onions marks the start of a new growing season every February.  The seeds go in flats in the greenhouse; our winter oasis in an otherwise inhospitable growing environment.  When temperatures fall to single digits at night and there’s a foot of snow on the ground, it’s odd to see tiny seedlings poke their heads out of the potting soil, searching for warmth and sunshine.  It is also invigorating seeing green, seeing life, seeing growth once again.  They won’t be lonely for long.  This week we’ll seed leeks, cabbage, kale, and some herbs.  Onions though, have the longest road ahead of them.  We will give them haircuts once they reach six to eight inches tall; plant them in late April; weed them three or so times; harvest in late July; and cure and store them before sharing the bounty.  I just ate one of our last onions from the 2014 season the same week we seeded this year’s crop.  It is one of the only annual crops that keeps us company year round, for better or for worse. 

Winter is also the perfect time to reflect on the previous year, and assess what went well and where we need to improve.  We had a great growing season last year, albeit dry.  Dry is much better than wet as long as we can keep everything watered.  When there’s too much moisture, it’s difficult to accomplish anything in the fields.  Disease spreads and plant roots struggle to “breathe” as water fills the gaps in the soil once occupied by air.  Just like us, plants respire! Even though we were happy with our 2014 harvest, we are motivated to continue to learn from our mistakes and our observations.  Some elements of farming, such as weather, pest infestations, and disease outbreaks are out of our hands.  We can do our part to mitigate those effects and take preventative action by creating an environment that sets our crops up for success.  First and foremost this comes in the form of soil management.  The dirt is the immune system of the plants.  Provide appropriate soil texture, microbial activity, nutrients and minerals, and plants can aspire to do great things. 

That is just the beginning of their journey though.  We’ll do our best to take them the rest of the way, making sure they’re fed, watered, and protected until we pass them off to you.  So thank you for being a part of our community…our family, because come June, our babies will need a loving home.  We are very excited to have the 2015 growing season underway, and can’t wait to see you this spring! 

image1SMF 2015 Onion Seedlings

Turnip fries

Try this healthy BAKED turnip fry!  They feature Parmesan…we tried a rosemary and sea salt version and a paprika one.  What varieties have you tried?

CSA Share- Week 19

This weeks share will likely look something like this.

CSA Share- Week 18

We have have 4 weeks left in this season!  We can hardly believe it ourselves!  It has crept up on us too.

This weeks share will likely include:

A choice of greens ( kale, chard or collards),lettuce, bok choy, kohlrabi or cabbage, turnips, spinach, and peppers.

U-pick:

Herbs, hot peppers, and arugula.

CSA Share- Week 13

Image

This week will be as follows:

Tomatoes, potatoes, Beans, eggplant/tomatillos, leeks, sweet peppers, hot peppers, garlic.

U-pick-

Flowers, herbs, cherry tomatoes.

From Dirt to Plate- A kid’s pizza party!

We had a wonderful turnout for our cooking class this past Saturday!  Intern Laura started off with a quick lesson on connecting pizza to farming, then we were off to the field to harvest our toppings!  After a little bit of sweat and hard work, it was time for some serious pizza making.  They were all masterpieces… absolutely delectable!  Thanks to all of you who came out and shared your Saturday with us!

What tasty creations we had!

CSA Share- Week 12

We are just half way through the season…with two and half months left!

This is your share this week.

Eggplant, potato, pepper, tomatillo, tomatoes, onions, sweet peppers, hot peppers, summer leeks ( a little smaller than fall leeks).

U-pick

Green beans (our third planting…they taste great), cherry tomatoes ( the rain has made their harvest a little harder, but still possible), herbs, flowers.
Enjoy!

Grilled Vegetable Sandwich

This is a quick meal idea that is as easy as it sounds.  If you need directions you could use THIS recipe.  We used eggplant, green peppers, and onions from the share this week, but you could substitute or add any number of vegetables.  This was topped of with a little pesto (from u-pick basil), and thinly sliced cheese.  And VOILA!

CSA Share: Week 10 and mid-summer recipe ideas

This Friday marks the beginning of the 10th week of produce shares at the farm.  Your share will  likely include the following.

Potatoes, tomatoes, sweet peppers, tomatillos, Chinese cabbage, eggplant and hot peppers.

U-pick-

Flowers, herbs, cherry tomatoes, green and wax beans.

We are anticipating that some of you may not be that familiar with utilizing tomatillos, and/or eggplant that regularly.  I will be posting links to some great recipes below.

RECIPE IDEAS-

Tomatillo– Learn more about this wonderful “little tomato“, which is the literal translation for tomatillo.  You are probably most familiar with it in the form it is most often  served, as salsa verde , with a side of chips.  We here at Sandbrook Meadow like to live a little on the wild side of life, so when we are given tomatillos we like to think a little outside of the box.  We hope you try some of the following recipes.  We have tried some, but not all of them…let us know your favorite, or a new one we don’t even know about!

Eggplant– Or “Aubergine” as I knew it growing up…Is native to India and generally falls in the “love it or leave it” family.  We choose to love it and so should you!

Baba Ganoush

Adapted from Saad Fayed

Baba Ganoush is a popular dip made from eggplant and tahini.  It has a smooth, creamy texture, and a slightly smoke taste.  It is traditionally served with pita bread (toasted or fresh), however many people like it as a chip dip with potato chips or tortilla chips

Ingredients:

  • 1 large eggplant
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup lemon juice (depending on taste)
  • 1/4 tablespoons tahini
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons olive oil
  • Garnish
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and bake eggplant for 30 minutes, or until outside is crisp and inside is soft.Allow to cool for 20 minutes.

Cut open eggplant and scoop out the flesh into colander and allow to drain for 10 minutes. Removing the excess liquid helps to eliminate a bitter flavor.

Place eggplant flesh in a medium bowl. Add remaining ingredients and mash together. You can also use a food processor instead of by hand. Pulse for about 2 minutes.

Place in serving bowl and top with lemon juice and olive oil. Add other garnishes according to taste.

Serve with warm or toasted pita or flatbread. Enjoy!