Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Watermelon Radishes

I got out of the habit of blogging often and I'm going to try to get back to it.  I almost considered giving it up because I've become so very busy, but I've met many people who say they read it and love it and I love meeting new people through this medium!  

This past summer was a kick in the pants as far as the amount of work my mini farm seemed to require and the motivation that I had to complete it.  I've made some changes in my philosophy on how I will continue and I think these changes will refresh my outlook.

The garden will change from being a market garden to a smaller garden for only my family.  Hours and hours and hours of backbreaking weeding and garden work will do that to you!  I felt like I missed the summer and many opportunities to enjoy time with my family.  

Moving ahead, I'm going focusing on producing maple syrup, and most importantly, honey.  Local honey seems to be the lost commodity that everyone wants and I'm happy to work the bees to provide.  Next year you'll find me at the Farmer's Market with locally made or produced maple syrup and honey, and Jackson's preserves and jellies.  

Sometimes it takes awhile to find your focus and sometimes the focus changes even when you think you've found it!

Late in August I did a small planting in the high tunnel.  I'm experimenting to see what I can  get to grow through the winter for fresh vegetables year round.  

Yesterday I picked watermelon radishes.  These giant sized radishes taste exactly like the smaller red outside-white inside radishes, but sure do put a nice punch of color on the dinner table!

I sliced them up to serve with a bit of salt.  The rinds are a little tough, but the inside is tender and delicious.  

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Are You Keen On Kale?

It comes in these giant, frilly, green bundles at the grocery store and you look at it and think, "what the heck do I do with that?"

I didn't know either.  Then I grew it one year and fell in love with it.  

Sadly, kale is number ten on the Dirty Dozen for pesticides list so look for a local organic farmer who is selling it to buy it now.  Kale probably made the list because, in early summer, kale gets attacked by flea beetles like crazy, and looks like lace part of the year.  But then in the late summer and early fall, when most pests have died off due to the cold weather, suddenly kale comes into it's glory.  It grows green, tall, beautiful (and nutrient dense) leaves and it laughs at the cold weather!  I've gone out into the garden in the middle of winter and picked kale out of the snow!  

Now its time to cook the kale. You can find a million recipes online, but for me the most simple recipes are the best. and my two favorite ways to serve it are, first, to saute kale in olive oil with some garlic, a drop of lemon juice, and a little red pepper and the second way is to chop it up and throw a big handful into just about any soup you're making.  Easy!

I'm not to whom I should credit this chart.
It comes via Food Inc. with a juice generation logo.  

Give kale a try!