- FROM THE FARMERS
We’re now officially USDA Certified Organic. It’s been quite the trying experience to get all of our ducks in a row to complete the application process. We’ve provided field histories, financial records, and filled out lots of paper work to get the process going so we are very excited and relieved to have completed our certification for the year. Many farmers seem to question to value of becoming certified organic, but having gone through the process, I can attest to the many benefits. By keeping the detailed records required by the certifying agency we will become better farmers. Knowing how much to plant, when to plant, and when we should expect to harvest our crops will be invaluable information. Also, our customers can be assured they are getting produce that meets these strict guidelines, and they don’t just have to take our word.
After the growing season we’ve had this year, I can understand why some farmers have no interest in organics. It’s been challenging, to say the least, and had we been using conventional methods we might not be dealing with a lot of the problems we are right now. Last week we had three big losses, and evidence of more to come in the future. Our purslane and swiss chard were both infected with Cercospora (a fungal disease which causes holes in the leaves and eventually death of the plant), and we had a total loss in about 48 hours.
The most devastating loss was the garlic… I was so happy with the size and quality of the garlic when we harvested. With the loss of the chard and purslane towards the end of last week I was looking for something to replace them with and went to pull down some garlic bulbs curing in the barn only to find, what I think to be, onion maggots. I’ve been reading about what I should have done and the conventional wisdom is to use in-row insecticide when you plant, and when you have rainy weather apply fungicides every 5 days. Organic recommendations are to practice good crop rotation and field sanitation (don’t leave crops in the field that could be a host for your problem). At this point in the season all of our crops are coming from fields that were previously pasture, so I thought we were pretty much in the clear with disease and pest problems. What I failed to realize was that many perennial pasture weeds are a host of common vegetable pests/diseases. This has given me a new understanding of what it means to get your ground in vegetable condition. Thanks again for sticking with us as we learn how to be better farmers.
WEEK #13 CSA SHARE CONTENTS
ALL OUR PRODUCE IS NOW CERTIFIED ORGANIC!
- CHERRY TOMATOES
- SWEET POTATO GREENS (use them like you would spinach or kale)
- SUMMER SQUASH
FARM NOTES & EVENTS
- TUESDAY – BEREA FARMERS MARKET, 3:30-6:30 PM
- THURSDAY – MADISON COUNTY FARMERS MARKET, 10:00-1:00 PM @ EKU
- SATURDAY – BEREA FARMERS MARKET, 9:00-12:00 PM
- SATURDAY – LEXINGTON FARMERS MARKET, 7:00-12:00 PM
FROM THE KITCHEN
MUSHROOM PIZZA BURGERS AND GREEN BEAN FRIESINGREDIENTS: olive oil 1.5 lbs green beans 6 portobello mushrooms, stems removed
1 medium onion, diced couples slices smoked turkey breast or cooked bacon 1 bunch sweet potato greens or chard and stems, chopped
3 T pesto (or lots of basil, chopped, and lots of garlic, mashed)
balsamic vinegar salt
your favorite cheese
Preheat your oven to 350. Snap off ends of the beans, toss with olive oil, spread out on baking sheet, sprinkle with salt and put in the oven.
Wash mushrooms and remove stems. Brush with olive oil, lay cap side down on a baking sheet, sprinkle with salt and put in the oven.
Put a tablespoon or so of olive oil in a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Saute diced onion for 3 minutes. Add stems of greens and saute for another couple minutes. Add chopped smoked turkey or cooked bacon. Then add greens and cook until desired texture. Stir in pesto or garlic and basil, give a splash of balsamic vinegar and cook for just a couple more minutes. Turn off the heat, salt to taste and let sit while mushrooms finish cooking.
When mushrooms are tender, spoon greens mixture on top, grate cheese over the greens, and return to oven to melt. The mushroom pizza burgers and green bean fries should be done at about the same time – about 1 hour total. The fries are extra good when they get a little crispy!
This recipe is a great way to used up old beans and wilted greens in your veggie drawer. If you already used up all your beans, then make “fries” out of potatoes, tomatoes, okra, or squash. Just adjust your cooking time!