Archive for June 2009

The Farm (Shares) Report, 06/09/09 – Seven Pounds of Greens

It is farm shares time, and the Red-Haired Boy and I have been eagerly awaiting our first delivery from Steve.  Today was the day.

Last year, or maybe the year before, Steve started sending an e-mail early the day of the dropoff indicating what we were getting.  Today’s list:

  • pea tendrils
  • red leaf lettuce
  • romaine lettuce
  • chicory (his name – I usually refer to this one as curly endive)
  • bok choy
  • spinach

As the season progresses, it’s typical to get about 8 different items, so I confess to wondering if six bunches of greens would be enough to last until next week.  Still – greens picked this morning!  The only thing better is greens picked five minutes ago.

It was misty, so I bundled young Miss Gillian into a nice thick blanket and took the stroller over to the drop point, keeping up a little patter about getting our veggies from Farmer Steve.

When I arrived … let’s just say that my fears about adequacy were unfounded.  We got only six items, true, but they were six HUGE items.  The romaine was almost as big as Gillian, and with the exception of the pea tendrils, everything else was comparably sized.

“Steve,” I said, “What on earth are you feeding these plants?”

“The same thing I feed him:  steroids,” he said, pointing to Steven Jr.  Given young Steven’s dramatic increase in height since last year (I think the kid is 4 now, but I’ve lost track), it’s believable that everyone and everything on Parker Farm is getting extra growth hormones or something.

The total haul could barely be persuaded to fit into the basket underneath the stroller, and I still had to pick up a gallon of milk, too.  And we get the SMALL share.  Apparently the conditions this spring were perfect for greens – not too wet, not too dry, and rather cool even by New England standards.  Today, in fact, the temps were in the 50s.  (Yes, people, it is nearing the middle of June.)

I didn’t think to weigh the abundance until after Mat and I had eaten some, and I’d stemmed the spinach to make room for it in the fridge – but the total weight after these efforts was 6 lb 11 oz.  Surely we’d just been given 7 lbs of greens.  And all this for maybe $12 or $13 a week.  (Since we play a flat fee in January, the actual cost per week depends on how long the season lasts.)

After packing everything into plastic bags and rearranging the fridge, I said, “There.  It’s all in now.”  The Red-Haired Boy replied, “Does the door close?”

Here is my plan for using these lovely veggies:

  • Several mixed salads using the two lettuces and some endive
  • A Caesar salad using just the romaine and a knockout homemade Caesar dressing
  • A frittata with the spinach and more endive (and maybe the greens from the turnips and radishes I picked up at last week’s farmer’s market)
  • Chicken, coconut milk, the bok choy, and some zucchini that are kicking around the fridge

I have not yet thought through what to do with the pea tendrils.  No doubt some will find their way into a salad or two, but I’m thinking they need to be just wilted in a garlicky broth.


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