If only I had been paying attention…

This has been a remarkable farm season. The weather has been neither too harsh nor too kind. We have had to irrigate very little and the crops have grown well.

It has been a crazy three weeks. We just finished harvesting green, yellow and purple beans. Originally, I had planted two different plantings, with a fairly healthy gap between them. The cool weather in May/June essentially slowed one planting down and so the later planting caught right up. It is sort a like when the outgoing tide meets the incoming tide and everything rises at that moment!

Thanks for eating green beans. We picked over 2,000 lbs. and our customers ate most of them. I can say most of them because green beans are one of those crops that gets “grazed” on a regular basis. They might not be as sweet as raspberries, but when beans are on, they are the preferred snack at Klesick Farms!

This week is a little quieter from our farm. Italian prunes and chard in most boxes; walnuts, peppers, tomatoes, zucchini and peppers in smaller quantities. Then there are the cucumbers. This year we planted a new variety called Silver Slicers. They are a white-skinned cucumber and super delish! I planted about 100 seeds at two different times and, oh my word, those little cucurbits make cucumbers faster than rabbits make rabbits, if you get my drift. They are the most productive cucumber I have ever grown.

Ironically, I would have never grown these, if I had been paying attention. Early in the spring I was talking with Ada, my seed representative from High Mowing Organic seeds. We were talking back and forth about what varieties grew well in greenhouse environments and did well in last year’s seed trials. We decided on Manny, a beautiful smooth green-skinned cucumber. Ada also mentioned that Silver Slicers did really well in the trials, too. Because I am always willing to try a new variety, I ordered and split the plantings.

Well, since Ada and I were talking about cucumbers, it didn’t dawn on me that the Silver Slicers were not GREEEEN! Imagine my surprise when they starting “setting” fruit that was white! Talk about a mini heart attack! My mind raced through all the prep work, the fertilizer blend, weather patterns, and I asked myself, “What was wrong? How come they are not green? Is my soil deficient in nutrients?” Thankfully, a quick check-in with Ada calmed my mini crisis. She assured me that the Silver Slicer is a white-skinned cucumber.

I am now so thankful for that oversight. The world has plenty of green cucumbers, so I will make the Silver Slicer a staple for Klesick Farms and we can all enjoy them this year and next!

Thanks for eating locally grown food. You are making a difference one bite at a time for your health and the health of our community.

Farmer Tristan



Recipe: Mexican Style Grilled Corn

Ingredients:

3-5 ears of corn, husked 6 tablespoons mayonnaise 1 to 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice, or to taste ½ teaspoon chili powder, or to taste Salt and freshly ground black pepper Cotija or feta cheese

Directions:

Prepare a grill, with heat medium-high and rack about 4 inches from the fire. Put corn on grill and cook until kernels begin to char, about 5 minutes, then turn. Continue cooking and turning until all sides are slightly blackened.

Mix together mayonnaise, lime juice, chili powder and some salt and pepper in a small bowl. Taste and adjust seasoning, adding more lime juice or chili powder if you like. Serve corn with chili-lime mayo and sprinkle with cotija or feta cheese.

Recipe adapted from cooking.nytimes.com


Know Your Produce: Plums

Domestic plums are crimson to black-red with a yellow or reddish flesh; they are in season May through October. High in vitamin C, plums are packed with disease-fighting antioxidants. They’re sweet and delicious—which is why highly desirable things are called “plum.”

Store: If too firm to use, place in a closed paper bag at room temperature for one to two days. Once ripe, plums can be kept in a plastic bag in the refrigerator up to three days. Refrigerating plums before they’re ripe results in a mealy texture, so allow firm fruit to ripen at room temperature up to 2 days.

Prep: Remove the pit by slicing all the way around the fruit, starting at the stem end. Rotate each half and the pit should come free.

Use: Plums pair well with both sweet and savory foods and make an excellent accompaniment for cheese, chocolate, and dessert wines.