Journal Post for the week of August 17, 2010

VOLUME V, JOURNAL X
AUGUST 16, 2010
BLUE HERON FARM JOURNAL
SO WHAT’S HAPPENING ON THE FARM THIS WEEK?

Hi folks, welcome back! Interns Joe, Emily, and Sophie here–Adam is in the field, Christine and Sadie are delivering produce, and Eric is on his way back from Putney, where he’s picking up the 120+ skeins of gorgeous Green Mountain Spinnery-spun wool from our sheep. We’re all excited to hand dye it and have it for sale in the near future.

It’s been a pretty crazy week here, on and off the farm. The field and hoophouse have been producing insane quantities of tantalizing tomatoes, the melons are marvelous, and the watermelons are well on their way. We’ve finally caught, transported, and released the red squirrel who was terrorizing our farmstand tomatoes, so tomatoes will at last be available throughout the week. In other animal news, the 175 pullet chickens who arrived last week are feeling much more at home and are starting to produce adorable little eggs. We’re really glad that they’ve learned to go to sleep inside their coop, rather than underneath, so no more evenings spent crawling underneath and transporting them one by one to their roosts. We’re also homestead-sitting for a friend, milking goats twice a day and learning lots about ducks and turkeys.

Mark your calendars! We’re excited to announce that on August 24th there will be a screening of the documentary film “Fresh,” a film about the farmers, thinkers, and business people re-inventing our food system in America. Eric has headed up the organization of this event, which will include a tomato tasting at 6 pm followed by the film at 6:30. The event will be held at the South Hero Congregational Church, and donations will benefit the Food for Thought program.

Lastly, we’re sad to be saying goodbye to Sophie, whose upbeat attitude and culinary talent have brightened our summer and will certainly be missed. 🙁 CSA members may recognize her excellent handwriting and decorations on your weekly pickup list, but we will remember her as a inquisitive and devoted intern who was a great friend to the sheep, and to us. She’ll continue her journey at UVM this fall studying religion and art, and we hope she visits soon.

Enjoy the veggies, and see you next week! Peace, Sophie, Emily, Joe, Eric, Sadie, Adam and Christine

WHAT’S IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK: SLICING CUKES, SWEET MELONS (SUN JEWEL OR CANTALOUPES), ZUCCHINI, SQUASH, SWEET PEPPERS, SUNGOLD CHERRY TOMATOES, SLICING HEIRLOOM TOMATOES,ORIENT OR LISTADA DA GANDIA EGGPLANT, RED POTATOES, PARSLEY, BASIL, PYO GROUND CHERRIES.

Our blog is at: www.blueheronfarmvt.com – check us out and/or leave a comment

Pictures of our farm can be seen and shared on the following website: http://blueheronfarmvt.shutterfly.com/
From Fiona – one of our working members – On Monday we were chatting about photos. Seems that several people have been taking photos of the farm/farm stand/wonderful veggies etc. etc. People enjoy sharing their photos (its another good way to build community). So I agreed to set up a photo sharing site for the farm. Take a look and see what you think.

EGGS FOR SALE
We have the pretty girls’ eggs for sale – these are free-range, certified organic chicken eggs that are brown, green and blue – with the brightest yellow/orange yolks you ever seen. The eggs are $5.00 a dozen.

QUAKER ROAD RASPBERRIES ARE BACK!
Our neighbor, Meg Pond at 36 Quaker will be having PYO organically raised raspberries. PLease give her a call at 372-3019 for times and availability.

FRESH – THE MOVIE – COMING SOON TO SOUTH HERO – COURTESY OF BLUE HERON FARM

Come see a public screening of Fresh – a film about the farmers, thinkers, and business people re-inventing our food system in America! As seen at the the Roxy theater in Burlington! Featuring urban farmer Will Allen, world famous sustainable farmer Joel Salatin, and food journalist Michael Pollan. Tuesday, August 24th @ South Hero Congregational Church 6:00 Heirloom Tomato Tasting sponsored by Blue Heron Farm followed by movie screening with a discussion following. Donations are welcome for the Food For Thought program
RECIPES

Stuffed Striped Cavern Tomatoes
A gorgeous dish starring the farm’s own striped cavern tomatoes! The hollow nature of these tomatoes make them perfect for stuffing.

9 striped cavern tomatoes
1 1/2 cups goat cheese (chevre)
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1 egg
fresh basil, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
breadcrumbs

Preheat the oven to 350. Slice the tops off tomatoes and scoop out seeds using a finger or a spoon. arrange in an 8×8 pan and bake for 5 minutes to soften. While baking, mix all other ingredients (except breadcrumbs) in a bowl. When the tomatoes come out, carefully scoop a few spoonfuls of the mixture into each one. Top with a little more basil and breadcrumbs. Put back in the oven for 10 minutes or so, then finish in the broiler if you want your breadcrumbs crunchy.

Maffé aux Legumes Arachid
A Senegalese stew of beef or lamb* in peanut butter sauce, served over rice. Intern Emily brought this one back from a term abroad.

2 large onions, chopped
3-6 cloves minced garlic
1/2-3/4 cup vegetable oil
2 lb stewing beef or lamb cut into cubes (*optional; this dish is easily made vegetarian by omitting the meat)
1 cup tomato sauce
2 tomatoes, cubed
1 cup beef or vegetable broth (use more or less to achieve desired thickness)
1 tbsp coarse black pepper

1 tbsp salt
1/2 tsp thyme
pinch cumin and/or coriander
4-6 carrots, thickly sliced
3-5 sweet peppers (red or green), chopped
2 Hungarian Hot Wax peppers or 1 Jalapeno, minced
3 large potatoes (sweet or regular), cubed
2 medium eggplants, cubed
1/2 cabbage, cubed
1 cup peanut butter
Rice, prepared as directed

Preparation:
Heat the oil in a large pot and add the onions, garlic and meat. Cook the meat until lightly colored, then mix the tomato sauce, tomatoes, and beef along with the chili, black pepper, salt, thyme, and cumin. Add the carrots and peppers and simmer until a fork pierces a carrot slice but it is not fully cooked, about 10-20 minutes (depending on thickness). Add potatoes. Cover and simmer until the potatoes can just be pierced by a fork. Then add the eggplant and cabbage, continue to simmer until the eggplant is cooked through.
Place the peanut butter in a separate bowl, add some ( about 1/2 cup) of the pan stock into the peanut butter and mix to a smooth paste before adding into the pan while stirring. Cook for a further 5 minutes, until the sauce thickens. Serve over a bed of rice. Yields about 8 servings.

Ground Cherry-Rhubarb Crumble (adapted from smittenkitchen.com)
For the topping:
1 1/3 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons Demerara sugar (or turbinado sugar aka Sugar in the Raw)
Zest of one lemon
1/4 pound (1 stick or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, melted
For the filling:
1 1/2 cups rhubarb, chopped into 1-inch pieces
1 quart ground cherries, husks removed
Juice of one lemon
1/2 cup sugar
3 to 4 tablespoons cornstarch
Pinch of salt

1. Heat oven to 375°F. Prepare topping: In a mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, sugars and lemon zest and add the melted butter. Mix until small and large clumps form. Refrigerate until needed.
2. Prepare filling: Toss rhubarb, ground cherries, lemon juice, sugar, cornstarch and a pinch of salt in a 9-inch deep-dish pie plate.
3. Remove topping from refrigerator and cover fruit thickly and evenly with topping. Place pie plate on a baking sheet, and bake until crumble topping is golden brown in places and fruit is bubbling beneath, about 40 minutes. Yields 6 to 8 servings.

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