Week No. 14 – 2012 Season

Ways to get involved, support farm in last part of hottest season and year

Scorching heat of August has followed us into September. We must surely have tied a past record, which I read about last week in the Chicago Tribune, for the most 90-degree or warmer days in a single year. We were just two days away from the tie last Wednesday, with 45 very hot days in 2012. We continue to irrigate as we harvest, so unusual for this time of year. We also find ourselves drinking water, seltzer, lemonade, fruit juices from the Amish bent-and-dent store, throughout each day to keep going long hours outside. Fall plantings are coming up, and we’re trying to keep weeds under control there and sprinklers running to expedite growth. More spinach, carrots and radishes were planted this past week. Remarkably, our harvests are still weighing in a surprising bounty that reflects an entire season of very hard work and our 18 years of farming experience. You’ll feel about 13 pounds of fresh produce in your subscription this week, including many heirloom tomatoes. Dela and our small, loyal crew here are so grateful to have had our drought initiatives and responses rewarded, that they want to plan a Saturday, Oct. 6 “We Survived the 2012 Drought Celebration!” It will include a volunteer workday, of course (no rest for the weary organic farmer – or subscriber). We’ll need help wrapping up garden beds and fields, harvesting sweet potatoes, taking down trellis for more than 3,500 tomato plants, taking up plastic mulch, etc. However, the potluck, bonfire, camping on Friday and Saturday night will fill participating hearts with that wonderful sense of community that is what Scotch Hill Farm and you have tried to be about! What we do each day- Hunched over plants of every type you’ll see in your shares over this season (and some you won’t see because of the drought), we crawl, slide, step our way down row upon row in garden and field each day. We pull away the weeds, smooth earth back up against unsteady stalks and stems, pluck and cut the fresh vegetables into tub after tub, tray after tray, bucket after bucket. I don’t complain about this work; it’s what I love to do. The heat is at times almost unbearable, yet it teaches me to appreciate each breeze, each cooling cloud that passes our way. None of us can perform this labor of love without you. Thanks for making our daily contact with the essentials of life possible. Thanks for your support. More late-season farm events –Canning along side Dela or working along side of us in garden and field are on the schedule for our last mid-month subscriber workday on Saturday, Sept. 15. The day will include a potluck. Bring a dish to pass and a beverage of your choice. You’re welcome to join us as early as 9 a.m. Stay a few hours or the entire day. We start winding down around 4 p.m. to allow folks who’ve traveled some distance time to return at a decent hour. We’ve been invited to partner with Inspiration Café on a benefit meal in Chicago in October. We’re also hosting a meal and program with the south central synod of the Lutheran church in late September. Dela and Katie are making a good supply of our goat milk soap for holiday, fair trade and winter farmers markets, also fund-raisers with public schools. If you’d like to attend any of these events, or if you have any contacts with similar venues that might include us, please let us know.

This Week’s Vegetables are:

  • Leaf lettuce mix
  • Broccoli (1 lb)
  • Assorted, large tomato varieties (4 lbs.)
  • Bright Lights Chard
  • Juliet and Sungold tomatoes (1/2 lb.)
  • Beans
  • Turnips (both Scarlet and Hakurai varieties)
  • Eggplant
  • Greens Mix
  • Bok Choi
  • Beets (you can eat and cook their greens, also the greens of our turnips)
  • Summer Squash
  • Peppers (both sweet and hot varieties)

Photos of this share help you identify each variety and can be found by the website or Facebook

Cooking Tips for the Week

Broccoli Salad From Simply in Season by Mary Beth Lind and Cathleen Hockman-Wert
This recipe is known to turn broccoli haters into broccoli lovers. Mix together 3 cups broccoli florets, 1 cup raisins, 10 slices bacon (fried, crumbled) OR ½ cup bacon bits (optional), ½ cup red onion (sliced), ½ cup cheese (shredded, optional), in a large bowl. Set aside (cherry toatoes could be added). Combine 2 tablespoons sugar and 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar and stir to dissolve. Stir in ¾ cup yogurt or mayonnaise  until blended. Pour over the broccoli mixture and stir together. Serves 6.