Nighttime lows dropped to 29 degrees on Monday night. We picked all of our mature lettuce to protect it from damage. Frost and freezes can damage sensitive crops even if they don’t kill the entire plant. Frost also disrupts harvesting, as we have to wait until things thaw out to handle them.
The good news is that a freeze should knock back insect populations. We are hoping that the cold weather will reduce pest damage to our strawberries. Currently most of them that get ripe have already been tasted by small, spineless creatures covered in exoskeletons. The straw mulch that we use provides habitat for these insects, where plastic mulch would not. Yet, plastic mulch does not add carbon to the soil at the end of the season, or keep soil temperatures lower to keep yields going later into the spring. Every decision we make on the farm has at least one trade-off and we carefully consider this in our management. Each year we make some changes to find out what works better. The farm continually changes and evolves, and hopefully keeps making progress towards the moving target of sustainability.
In this week’s Winter Share please enjoy:
O’ Henry Fingerling Sweet Potatoes – scrub, slice and roast, or boil & mash. See below for recipe.
Carrots – Shredded in salads, wraps or rolls, crunch and snack, stir fry, soups, roasted – good in any form.
Collard Greens – Try them as a wrap instead of a tortilla! Or chop finely and add to soups and stews
Dill – chop and sprinkle on your O’Henry potato salad, or freeze in oil to preserve.
Fava Bean Shoots – separate leaves from stem and use like spinach
Lettuce – Use in salads, in wraps or in these Summer Rolls.
Mizuna – great in salad mixes or cooked lightly like spinach
Tokyo Turnips – roast, put in soups
Easy Mashed Potatoes
My friend Caitlin taught me how to make these very easy mashed potatoes. Don’t have milk or butter? You don’t need it! This recipe works for russet, red, sweet potatoes, etc.
- Scrub and wash the potatoes. (I leave skins on, but you can peel if you wish).
- Rough chop into large chunks.
- Place in a large pot and cover with plenty of cold water. Add a few pinches of salt.
- Bring to a boil, cook until tender when pierced with a fork, maybe 15-20 minutes.
- Pour off liquid, but reserve some in another bowl.
- Mash potatoes (with a masher, large fork or wooden spoon), and add back cooking liquid until you reach the desired creaminess.
Salt to taste. Do not skimp on salt.
To join now, select the All Year Bi-Weekly Share when you sign up. Or, select Spring and begin receiving shares in March.