The farm has been in a state of food excess since the day I arrived. The beauty of farming at the height of the growing season is the incredibly bounty of food that the earth constantly provides, and we don’t want the labor that goes into growing and nurturing that food to go to waste by throwing perfectly good food into the compost pile. So, we have been doing a lot of eating, canning, freezing and selling of vegetables to maximize our labor. The second shift of food processing is equally as important these days.
A few hours after waking up this morning, I threw a bunch of potatoes, carrots, onions and basil into a crock pot with cannellini beans I reconstituted to go with last night’s Burgess buttercup squash curry. Dinner tonight will be brought to us by the magic of all day in a crock pot set to low.
Two days ago, we cleared all of the radishes out of a bed that had been planted with both carrots and radishes. Much to my amazement, radishes go from seed to plump and spicy vegetable in three weeks. Carrots take a lot longer, so when the radishes are removed from the bed, the carrots continue to grow.
After clearing all of the radishes, we selected the best specimens to replant into a different bed to grow out for seed, but about 150 radishes didn’t make the cut. I’ll make braised radishes for lunch, some radish relish to serve with tacos for tomorrow’s lunch (maybe), and a boatload of radish pickles from a recipe in Liana Krissoff’s Canning for a New Generation: Bold, Fresh Flavors for the Modern Pantry. (This book has been a savior for us during the height of zucchini and apricot onslaught.)
Yesterday we planted the rest of the tomato seedlings that have been patiently waiting in the greenhouse for their time to enter the big, bad world. At the same time, I completed the first real tomato harvest of the season, a promising 14 lbs. of Costoluto Genovese and Thessaloniki varieties. There are so many green tomatoes on the vine waiting to ripen, so we are staring at the tip of the iceberg with a clear view of the what lies ahead. So exciting! So much canning awaits! Salsa, marinara, arrabiata–who knows?