November 5, 2020 Farm Update

Hello to you all on this lovely Thursday November 5, 2020. 

It has been far too long since I wrote a newsletter. I am feeling really good that I am here at my computer doing so now. 

Right off the top we are really excited that there was enough ginger to share with all of you. We have not planted it for a few years because the cost to do so is very high. However, a little treat of ginger is always nice so we decided to say yes to ginger this year. This fresh ginger is entirely edible, the leaves, the stalk and the tuber. If you do a little google search you will find recipes for the stems. I store mine on the counter in easy reach of the cutting board and stove. 

Also this week was a share of garlic. This too should last for you on the counter until it is used up. This is the last of the 2020 garlic. Enjoy! 

The apple cider is organic paula reds, pressed on Monday, bottled on Tuesday and delivered to you on Wednesday. If you do not drink a lot of cider, feel free to freeze some of it. It freezes well. It will be good for a week. If you still have some in the fridge on Sunday I would freeze it for use later. 

Mulled Apple Cider is a real treat this time of year. You can mull the cider and then freeze it too if you want. The mulling spices are cinnamon sticks, whole cloves and star anise. Some recipes call for ginger and oranges. Noggins sells the little packages of mulling spices if that is helpful.  

The napa cabbage this week was not the large large heads that we harvested last week BECAUSE there were two bins left of the smaller earlier cabbage to use up first and because the value of the large napa's was more than this share week could manage. Now all the small earlier napa are used up and we are on the large ones for next time they are in the shares. I absolutely love napa cabbage. I find it very delicious and versatile. You can eat it cooked or raw and preserved. In our house when we are cooking dinner we will often take a cutting board and chop up some cabbage that everyone eats from us dinner cooks, 'the raw cabbage pre meal'. We do this with kohlrabi and watermelon radish too. You might be surprised how much is eaten before dinner of these healthy snacks. I don't mind if we all fill up on raw veggies before dinner. That can't hurt?

Finally the carrots, you may have noticed on the csa list, they are #2's. We had a whole bunch of second carrots that still have a lot of good eating and so we bagged them up for this week. 


Idea: I was thinking of offering a virtual Q&A session or maybe a bunch of videos where Josh and I explore a question you may have. If you have question that you would like Josh or I or anyone on the farm to explore in a tour/video could you let me know. It might be a fun way to share more of the farm with you, in short videos addressing your questions. 


In the images I have included you will see Frank and his friend carving pumpkins. This was the first year none of our kids went out for halloween. It was different. I as so happy when Frank and his three friends willingly carved a pumpkin each. I provided a little push, but of course once you get into it, it is fun. One of them had never carved one before. 

Another image is of the heart nuts that I harvested this year. I got a total of 20 nuts. Each year I plant a few more and hopefully one day we will have an abundant supply of heartnuts for everyone. They are great trees and I have been waiting in hopeful anticipation of this harvest for years now. It feels great to eat a nut from the tree I planted. Soon you will too. Just a few more years. 



 

Another image is of the flat bed truck and Josh on the forklift loading apples. Empty bins are taken from the yard to the orchard. Bins filled with apples arrive back in the yard. They are stacked and tagged. Then a truck comes along and we load it up. The truck takes the apples to the coolers. They are unloaded in the yard and then moved into the coolers. Dad plans what varieties go into what cooler rooms so that he can seal a room, control the atmosphere in the room to ensure the best quality apples all year long. 

Then when he opens a room, he has many varieties of apples that he can pack for the markets. This is the journey of the apples. We have completely finished harvesting the gala and honeycrisp and are now working to finish the Jonagolds. Then it will be on to spy and ida red. AND complete. 

We have started to say good bye to some of the farm staff for the season. Nick finished up here work last week. Melvin and Phoebe have headed back to Newfoundland this week. November 27th is the first flight for 3 men to head back to Jamaica. Then each week until Dec 15 they will head home. Everyone must be out of the country on December 15th. 

AND in sort of big news for me, for us. Izaak has accepted a job at Kimberly Alpine Resort as a snow board instructor. He leaves on November 25th and starts work on December 1st. For those who don't know, Izaak is our oldest. He is 18 and has been so helpful to us this year since the beginning of the pandemic and his plans got cancelled. It has been a real gift to be around him for these months. I am surprised how I can be so happy for him and so devastated at the same time. They both just sit in my heart at the same time. I woke up this morning and announced to Josh, 20 days until Izaak leaves (no, I am not counting). At this present moment I am not sure how I will say good bye, I will just be puddle of tears. At any rate, that is where I am these days now. Wrapping up the season on the farm and wrapping up 18 years of raising Izaak and letting him go on with his journey. I feels wild! 

So there we have it, a little update from your middle aged woman farmer. 

Thinking of you,

Patricia