These past two weeks have certainly tested all of our rain gear and positive attitudes (or lack thereof). While it is “normal” to have grey drippy Augusts, these daily deluges are far from the norm! A friend of mine who farms a few miles away measured over 8 inches of precipitation over 6 days last week. I will say that it makes me appreciate those brief moments of sun or even lack of rain – it’s incredible how a little sunlight hitting your face suddenly makes weeding tiny chickweed out of muddy baby cutting greens a surprise blessing!
So far our crops are doing fine, with the exception of lettuce and greens that are succumbing to stem rot. The zucchini are not happy, and it’s odd to have to baby and dole out a crop which is usually a reliable workhorse. I have half a high tunnel of sweet peppers that are barely starting to ripen and thinking about succumbing to mildews, but we are spraying our organic biological antifungal and staying on top of weeding and trimming. And keeping our fingers crossed. The tomatoes are really, really slow waiting for some sun and heat. The cucumbers are relentless…. I included a couple classic recipes for cooking the cucurbits, in case you are all sick of eating them raw!
The brussels sprouts tops are a favorite at the farm, they are the loose cabbagy tops of the plants that we trim this time of year to hasten the sizing up of the little sprouts. As one of my employees said, “yum, bacon!” Yes, it’s a classic – saute with bacon, they will cook fast. The new potatoes also cook much faster than storage varieties, so be careful if you are boiling them for potato salad. And just a reminder that if in doubt, you can turn about anything into a quiche.
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Sugar Snap Peas Sugar Snap Peas
Green Onions Green Onions
Brussels Sprouts Tops Brussels Sprouts Tops
Kohlrabi Herb – Parsley
Herb – Parsley
Summer Garden Crustless Quiche
1 teaspoon olive oil, or as needed
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 yellow onion, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups chopped kale
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 grinds fresh black pepper, or to taste
1 cup diced tomato
1/2 cup shredded carrots
3/4 cup whole milk
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9-inch pie dish with 1 teaspoon olive oil.
Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet over medium heat; cook and stir onion and garlic in the hot oil until garlic is fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Add kale, salt, and pepper; cook, stirring occasionally, until kale is wilted, about 5 minutes. Stir tomato and carrots into kale mixture; cook for 5 more minutes. Remove skillet from heat.
Whisk eggs and milk together in a bowl. Stir Cheddar cheese, kale mixture, and parsley into egg mixture; pour into the prepared pie dish.
Bake in the preheated oven until quiche is set in the middle and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, about 50 minutes. Cool in pie dish for 2 to 3 minutes before slicing.
Julia Child’s Baked Cucumber with Variations
2 large cucumbers
2 tbsp wine vinegar
1 ½ tsp salt
1/8 tsp sugar
3 tbsp butter
½ tsp dill or ½ tsp basil
4 tbsp minced green onions
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
Peel the cucumbers. Cut in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Cut into lengthwise strips about 3/8 inch wide. Cut strips into 2 inch pieces.
Toss the cucumber in a bowl with the vinegar, salt and sugar. Let stand for 30 minutes to several hours. Drain and pat dry in a towel.
Preheat oven to 375.
Toss the cucumbers in a baking dish with the butter, herbs, scallions and pepper.
Set uncovered in the middle level of the preheated oven for about an hour, tossing 2-3 times, until cucumbers are tender, but still have a suggestion of crispiness and texture. They will barely color during cooking.
Variation One: Parslied Cucumbers.
In a warm vegetable dish toss with 2 Tbsp minced parsley.
Variation Two: Creamed Cucumbers.
Boil 1 cup whipping cream until it has reduced by half. Season with salt and pepper, fold into the hot baked cucumbers, sprinkle with parsley and serve.