Monday, November 23, 2009
The quietly busy farm
Greetings from a quiet farm. It's just Paul and I now - all of our employees are gone for the winter (except for a bit of Winter CSA help every other week). Some of you have asked what we'll do now that the summer CSA is over. Well, the answer is, we'll keep farming! There is just as much work for Paul and I now as there was earlier in the fall - just less management and a little more privacy. That constitutes a holiday in its own right! We wouldn't be slowing down yet in a normal year, and this mild weather reinforces that. This week we are pulling in a few more tractor loads of celery and cabbage, washing produce for the first Winter CSA distribution, and spreading next year's vegetable ground with composted manure. What a glorious day to fling compost into a still rampant growth of cover crops. Ahh, you see, we began working on next year's fertility early this spring when we planted those cover crops, and are furthering the action with this week's composting. Long term health and sustainabliity requires long term planning and work.
If you still want to join the Winter CSA LET ME KNOW NOW so that we can include your share in the washing and harvesting this week. There is still plenty of room left in the Winter Share, and the first week's distribution is shaping up to be awesome!
I hope that every one's Thanksgiving dinner includes a little bit of Sweet Land Farm. Ours will! We're having turkey, sausage parsnip stuffing, mashed potatoes, and butternut pie.
Some of you have asked us how to store the roots from the last distribution. All roots store best in an open plastic bag in the crisper, but if you don't have room here are a few options. Beets, potatoes, celeriac, radishes, cabbage will store fine for a week on the counter. We like to feature them in a nice bowl. These veggies will start to show signs of dehydration after a week, but will still be fine to eat. Carrots and parsnips we try to keep in the crisper in an open plastic bag so they retain moisture, but also have a chance to breathe. Carrots will quickly loose sugars and crispness at room temperature. Another option is to take an evening and do a little prep cooking. Spend some time slicing and dicing for the week. A few of our members tell us that works well for them.
Thirdly, a plastic tote in an area with average temperatures around 40-50 degrees like the garage or basement will preserve your roots for weeks. Note: do not store veggies in a bin with apples. The ethylene gas from the apples will quickly spoil the roots.
Thanks for a great season everyone,