Bring on the Beans!

fermented chard stalks

OK, so the photo isn’t of beans, it’s of my fermenting chard stalks, but soon I will have similar jars of beans fermenting: Judy and I picked another 5 gallons each this afternoon after today’s order went out. I know what we will be doing tomorrow!

As I mentioned earlier, I wasn’t sure how I would make out with a full vegetable share just for me this week – especially given the fact that I was starting the week out with a bunch of leftovers. My conclusion: though I made a valiant effort, a full share is too much for one person! Even with a few shared meals, I finished the week with beets, some rutabaga greens, a few peas, and some green onions and herbs left over for the coming week. Next time, I would request to get only a half order for the week!

So here’s what I ate:

Sunday we devoured the carrots before I’d even finished unloading the veggies. Then I made a salad for the evening’s potluck using about half the lettuce along with some parsley, dill, and cilantro.

For lunch on Monday, I ate leftover soup (from last week) and some of the leftover salad from Sunday. I finely chopped cilantro to add to the soup and to eat on a slice of bread with creamy cheese. Supper was more leftovers (soup, green salad, and pasta salad) with cilantro added to freshen them up. On Tuesday I finished off the lettuce and pasta salads for lunch, along with bread, cheese, and more cilantro. Supper was at Tom and Judy’s.

For Wednesday’s communal lunch I made a double recipe of Chard Cheese Bake (see the June 23 post for a recipe) using green onions, beet greens, perpetual spinach, and Swiss chard. There was a fair bit left over, so I ate some for supper, along with some raw Cascadia sugar snap peas and a salad of lettuce, parsley, cilantro, and finely chopped Oregon Giant peas.

At lunchtime on Thursday I mixed minced green onions and basil into my creamy cheese, which I ate on a slice of bread alongside a sitr fry of onions, turnip greens, green beans, pre-cooked broad beans, and some Chinese Giant peas. I shelled and froze the green peas from the order (along with a large pail of extra peas from Wednesday’s picking) and began an experiment with fermented chard stalks (and beet stems) from a recipe I found online. I’ll let you know how that one turns out!

My next few meals bear a common theme. Supper that evening consisted of leftover Chard Cheese Bake, with a salad of lettuce, Oregon Giant peas, cilantro, dill, and basil, and Cascadia peas on the side. Friday lunch was the last of the casserole, with cilantro and green onion cheese spread on bread and Cascadia peas on the side. Supper was leftover stir-fry and a salad. Saturday lunch was more leftover stir-fry with cilantro and green onion cheese spread on bread.

Saturday evening, I once again had a family to feed! I steamed about 8 cubed potatoes and, when they were very nearly finished, stirred in the remaining Chinese Giant peas, the kale from my order, and 4 green onions, all finely chopped. I covered the pot and left it in a warm place for the veggies to cook while I went out to find and milk the cow. When I got back, I topped it with a sesame dressing: 4 Tbsp tahini, 2 Tbsp rice vinegar, 2 Tbsp Braggs, 2 Tbsp dark sesame oil, 2 cloves minced garlic, 1/4 cup yogurt, 1/4 tsp black pepper, 2 Tbsp minced cilantro. It was good, but probably too many potatoes for the amount of dressing. Next time I would cut back to 6 potatoes.

This morning was another heavy picking day. Judy started at 6 am and I joined her about half an hour later. Joseph, Dani, and the girls arrived at 11, and Lesley also pitched in for the last hour or so. We finished up at 1:15. Sometimes people comment that they find our vegetables expensive, but given that we spent at least 13 farmer hours picking and sorting 10 orders this morning (plus about 4 member volunteer hours) – never mind the full-time work that’s been going on since April planting, weeding, and tending the gardens – we figure you’re getting good value for your money!

So what are you getting today? In the roots department, we have the first baby potatoes of the season, along with more carrots and beets and some bigger onion thinnings (tops removed).

The peas are slowing down, but you still have a full pail of shelling peas, along with a handful of Chinese Giant and about a pail of mixed Oregon Giant and Cascadia. This will be the last week for edible pod peas, but we should have shelling peas for another week or two.

Beans, on the other hand, are just coming into their prime. You have a full pail of green beans, and about a half pail of wax beans this week, as well as a pail of broad beans.

Greens are still going strong, with more rutabaga greens, perpetual spinach, kale, and Swiss chard for cooking greens, and lettuce to top off the bag. For herbs this week you’ve got parsley, dill, basil, purple basil, and green onions. Unfortunately, our last seeding of cilantro has bolted, but there is another on its way.

Last but not least, we had a sneak peek for our members with full shares: your very first cucumber of the season! Next week you can look forward to plenty more where these came from, but for now, you will have to savour the one. Ours has already been devoured!

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