There is a lot of talk amid the rurally-minded, agrarian farmer types about putting down roots. Well, this week we are pulling them up! Carrots, beets and radishes have all been uprooted, washed and ready to trade in their sedentary existence for a life on the road. They hope to find refuge in your crisper drawer after their fleeting experiment with transience. Kale, chard broccoli, cabbage, peas, and asparagus might want to come along for the ride too.
We have plenty of eggs. This week, my dear mother became ensnarled in the electric netting, fell on the ground with a basket of eggs, and, I can only imagine, was grateful for the opportunity to be landing on the soft, grass-covered Earth, enveloped in the radiance of late-Spring—hens singing, birds chirping, thin clouds against the blue sky. I would have cussed. While mom faired pretty well in the fall, many eggs went all Humpty-Dumpty. Despite the great fall, however, there is still no shortage.
As the forage in the pasture starts to toughen a bit, the hens eat a bit less of it, preferring crunchy insects to stringy chlorophyll, and the yolks will likely be a bit lighter than earlier in the year. This is part of a natural cycle. Many farmers/feed makers add bizarre additions to their feed (like dried marigold flour) to make the yolks darker. We think this is unnecessary to the informed egg-eaters among us and is sort of weird. If we find too many folks remarking about the pallor of the summer yolks, we may revisit this policy…In conclusion, eat eggs!
Inside the deep freezers on the truck, we’re re-stocked with chicken from a butchering earlier in the week. Think fresh! Also, from the other butcher, comes more beef and pork. If there is a cut you’ve been waiting on, we might have it now…
There is also a whole side of bacon on the truck for all the DIY charcuterer-er-ists in the area. You can cure it to your specifications. Prefer to smoke your bacon over crumpled Sunday newspapers after marinating it overnight in cayenne pepper and chocolate milk? That’s great. I’ll have the pork belly. This could be a win-win.
Also, this week we’ll have some openings for the produce CSA for those on the waiting list this week. If you’re interested in getting started tomorrow, email us or stop by the market to signup!
See you at the Hyde Park Farmers’ Market, 9:30 to 1:30, and bring your shopping basket along with an appetite for local food. Happy Father’s Day!
Jerry and Liz
The Eaton Farm
Community Cooking Spotlight:
For the Love of Beets
Beets are one of my favorite vegetables. Their earthy sweetness is unlike any other root I know, and they are really fun to grow. Surprisingly versatile, beets can be become a savory side dish like these simple oven roasted beets. Or, with the magic of chocolate, they can be transformed into a decadent, moist beet cake, giving pause to even the most stubborn beet-hater when they realize there is a secret ingredient. Just this morning, as part of my ongoing campaign to feed my family ALL the vegetables, I impulsively added shredded cooked beets to my kids’ vanilla yogurt. This was met with mixed reactions. Silas, the seven year old, who already loves beets, was thoroughly amused by the bright pink hue in his bowl and ate every bite. Abe falls into the beet-hater camp, and immediately saw through my sham. Next time I’ll try pureed beets…
In addition to the variety of ways beets can be cooked, this humble root is also amazing when eaten raw. Beet salads are the perfect way to utilize beets without heating up the kitchen on hot summer days. Thanks to veteran CSA member, Brent, for sharing this photo and recipe for this stunning beet salad! -Liz
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Raw Beet Salad
adapted from www.foodnetwork.com
1 lb peeled julienned or shredded beets
1 large shallot or green onion, small dice
2 tsp dijon mustard (or more)
1 tsp fresh ginger, optional
1 Tbsp olive oil (or more)
3 Tbsp balsamic or apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp fresh dill or 1/2 tsp dried (substitute 1 tsp fresh rosemary OR tarragon)
2 sprigs fresh parsley, snipped and added for garnish
Salt and pepper to taste
Peel the beets and the shallot. Combine them in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade, and pulse carefully until the beets are shredded; do not puree. (Or grate the beets by hand and mince the shallots; combine.) Scrape into a bowl.
Toss with the salt, pepper, mustard, oil, and vinegar. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Toss in the herbs and serve.