Notes From the Farm
My Dad named this guy “The General.” Watch out, if anyone has little man’s syndrome it’s him, sporting eight inches tall and 26 oz. He is a Mille Fleur d’Uccle Bantam and really doesn’t want you near his five hens or even looking at them. He tends to go after people when their backs are turned, flying up at one’s legs. I guess when you are only 26 oz. you need to take every advantage. Feel free to protect yourself, my dad likes to go toe to toe with him. Sorry, we cannot take bets on the winner.
This Weeks’ CSA
Salad Mix: You know what to do. Tender young leaves and no cooking! Yum.
Carrots: First of the season, stores best with the tops removed.
Snow Peas: Pea season is going to be short due to the hot weather. Peas stop blossoming in the intense heat. Enjoy them while they last. Snow peas are especially good in stir fries or added to salads.
Bunching onions: This is the first year we have grown bunching onions and we are rather pleased with the results. Cut off the roots and use all the rest, even the greens. Fabulous in a salad and also tasty lightly cooked. Stores best in a plastic bag in the refrigerator.
Garlic Scapes: Once again. People at the Farmer’s Market report that they are good in salads, but you must like the strong taste of fresh garlic for this to fly. My personal favorite is food processing them with almost any kind of green ( kale or Swiss chard come at mind) and some strong flavored herbs ( basil, parsley) and making a unique pesto.
Marjoram: This is the tiny bundle of herbs in your box. I adore marjoram for its’ slightly sweet pungent flavor. You can use it in place of oregano in soups, sauces, salads etc. According to Wikipedia it “is indigenous to Cyprus and southern Turkey, and was known to the Greeks and Romans as a symbol of happiness.” If you don’t use it right away it can be dried in the shade, either on a screen or tied and hung in a cool, shady, airy place (closets can work well for this purpose).
Parsley: No longer just a garnish! Bring parsley to the plate more often. Great for making pesto or chopped onto salads.
Chard: What can we say, it’s green and good for you. Some people actually like the taste of it. Stores best covered in the refrigerator.
Hyssop: This is the bundle of purple flowering herbs in your box that most of you will have no idea how to use. Several options: 1) Put it in a small vase and set it one your table – visual delight. 2) Hang it to dry in a cool, shady spot. Once completely dry store in a jar for winter tea. 3) Make Hyssop sun tea, see below.
Hyssop is native to Southern Europe and the Middle East, but it is a tough plant because it survives the Montana winters. Bees are attracted to the beautiful, aromatic purple blossoms. According to the New Holistic Herbal by David Hoffman hyssop can be used to relieve coughs, bronchitis, and the common cold. I can speak from experience that it does seem to do the trick.
Hyssop Iced Sun Tea
Cut the hyssop using scissors into 1-2 inch pieces and place into a big glass jar. Pour water into the jar completely covering herbs and set in sun for many hours. The longer you let it set the stronger the flavor. Strain the hyssop. If you want to sweeten it now is the time to add sugar or honey to taste. Mix well and refrigerate until cool, add ice.