It’s A Satisfying Thing

Make your way back to local organic food; it’s the satisfying thing to do.

Cousin Bob's

Have you ever heard of someone, opening up a can of snap beans or a bag of carrots from the produce aisle in the supermarket and being totally satisfied enough to write a note to thank the grower. No probably not; it doesn’t happen that way because the growers of the store-bought items are people completely removed and unknown to the customer and the produce is just so-so.

Being farmers who sell directly to customers, it has certain benefits not available to the larger farms. Incentive comes our way because the customers know the farmer.  And that, customer appreciation invigorates us.

Here’s one such comment that we recently received just this week:

“The garlic arrived today as you said it would. We are delighted with it! Thank you for your excellent customer service and prompt delivery.

I am going to make one of our favorite summer meals this evening — a sauce made with fresh uncooked tomatoes, basil and lots of garlic served with sprouted wheat pasta and some parmesan cheese.”

On another occasion, we were sent a wonderfully hand-made and very artistic thank you card with a note written inside:

Thank You

“Josh and I wanted to thank you again for going out of your way last month to show us your lovely farm and your delicious produce! We loved everything  — the garlic, the potatoes, the squash and the amazing pesto! And we also loved getting the chance to meet you and talk with you about you and your farm. We would be happy to say hello –and buy more garlic garlic! — if our paths cross in the future!” — Rose and Josh, New York, New York

Needless to say, these customer comments made our day. Happy customers are satisfying to us.

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Digging Red Thumbs

We had a good run on RED THUMBS this year. They were an earlier potato (around 80 days) plus they had good size and shape.  These potatoes yielded well, and weren’t too fussy to grow and dig. When digging them their bright red color was easy to spot in the soil. They grew higher up in the hill so they could be lifted out of the soil using a broad fork. We will plant more of them in the future seasons.

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Bright Red-Skinned Thumbs have a Pink Flesh

And, maybe more importantly, the feedback from the customers were very positive. So you might say that we’re not the only ones digging our fingerling potatoes.

Here’s what Chef Butch had to say;

“Wanted to let you know how delicious the potatoes were – roasted with salt and pepper crust, baked with butter and sour cream, boiled and made into a fresh herbed home made mayonnaise. Everybody who ate them was wowed. Be seeing you soon for more!

And so our last dig of these Red Thumb beauties will go to Costa’s Food Center in Coudersport, Pennsylvania today; and some will go to  Schoolhouse Health Foods in Eldred, Pennsylvania later this week.

Weighting the Yield!

Weighing the Yield!

Fret not local food fans, we still have fingerlings available.  Our next harvests will be later maturing ones; the Russian Bananas and the Rose Finn Apples will be soon dug.

Click here to see our fingerling potato listing.

 

 

 

 

 

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From Field to Drying Rack

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Garlic Bulbs in Drying Rack

If somebody tells you, you put too much garlic in your food. Get rid of them you don’t need that kind of negativity in your life.

Yes indeed, we kicked off the garlic harvest.  This garlic harvest is our farm’s original garlic cultivar. A few years ago, we noticed it growing on a bank, in a small patch of long stemmed garlic plants amongst the weeds. We pulled some of these garlic plants and replanted a few of the very small bulbs and planted the tiny cloves into a prepared garlic bed. And, we’re finally got some decent sized bulbs after a few years of replanting the biggest bulbs. This old strain has an attractive bulb with distinctive purple striping.

Here’s a photo galley of a garlic harvest; as it goes from the field to the dry rack.

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Making Compost Tea

Mention that you made some compost tea, and “What is compost tea?” is a common question. Well the first thing you should know about it is that people don’t drink it but your plants will love it. So, you might think of it as a health drink of beneficial microorganisms brewed from compost for your garden plants to enjoy. Here is a 3-day brew (aerated with air not heated like real tea). Ingredients are worm castings, raw molasses, water and air. All this results in a wonderful and natural way to fertilizer the garden without dependence on chemicals.

It looks very much like brewed black tea; hence the name. The tea is dark brown tea-like color and odorless. It is not at all unpleasant. We applied the freshly brewed compost tea as a foliar feeding to vegetable plants and as a soil drench.

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Maine Mahogany Clams

Local spring garlic greens flavor Maine clams in this easily prepared meal.  Maine Mahogany Clams are ocean quahogs harvested off the coast of Maine that have a mahogany color. Every time that they are available fresh in the grocery stores anywhere around here abouts, we buy them, and being in Rural Pennsylvania that doesn’t happen too often. They are far less expensive than the more desirable and higher-priced littleneck clams, due to their size and color, so they are a great value.

Here we steamed them in a white wine and butter sauce, with some of our Spring Garlic greens (spring garlic now, and then the garlic scapes come in a few weeks) for a wonderful seafood meal.  Our Alleghany Upland garlic pairs well with the  seafood of Maine’s Down East. Note: the young garlic bulbs were removed from the greens, and saved for pickling.

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Green Spring Garlic

035We started the green spring garlic harvest. We have about 3 bushel to harvest, this first pick is for the farmers market today. Green spring garlic is harvested this time of year when the growing garlic is at the baby garlic stage (pre-scape). Last July, we harvested the garlic bulbs from our garlic field. Of course, there are always some bulbs that don’t get harvested. And, those bulbs left in ground grew plants shown here, and now it can be harvested as “green spring garlic”.  It looks and tastes like a scallion, or even more like a baby leek, than like garlic. But it has a garlic flavor, that gentle garlic heat at the back of the mouth when eaten raw. Can be cooked in any recipe, that calls for green onions, leeks or scallions, for a mild garlic flavor. Fresh spring garlic doesn’t keep very long, so we harvest it in small amounts to use within a day or two.

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Ponderous Du Jour

Potatoes-insecticide-8PARIS GREEN is described as highly toxic emerald-green crystalline. It was used in America and elsewhere as an insecticide for produce, such as apples, around 1900, where it was blended with lead arsenate. It was also used for rodent control and green paint pigment. Now, the old tin cans are collectible as antiques. It was considered back then to be perfectly safe if used as directed, probably marketed to farmers as a wonder product. Makes me wonder how the crop agricultural products in use today will be viewed a 100 years from now.

Glyphosate, the main ingredient in the herbicide Roundup, is now considered a carcinogen by Denmark’s Working Environment Authority:

“When we see that other mammals get cancer from glyphosate, we must assume that people who are exposed to the substance can also develop cancer,” says Philippe Grandjean, professor of environmental medicine at the University of Southern Denmark.

And according to Natural News, DNA from GMOs can pass directly into humans, study confirms:

(NaturalNews) The idea that DNA from genetically modified organisms (GMOs) is broken down in the digestive tract and rendered innocuous, a common industry claim, is patently false. A recent study published in the scientific journal <PUBLIC LIBRARY OF SCIENCE> PLOS ONE found that large, meal-derived DNA fragments from GMOs are fully capable of transferring their genes directly into the bloodstream, deconstructing the myth that transgenic foods act on the body in the same way as natural foods.

The article goes on to say:

The presence of transgenic genes in the small intestine was also found to affect the composition of beneficial bacteria, which are responsible for protecting the gut against foreign invaders and helping the body absorb nutrients from food…
None of this is really all that surprising, of course, as the biological activities behind how GMOs are processed by the human body have never been legitimately studied. Biotechnology companies have always just claimed that GMOs are the same as real food, without any evidence to back this up, and this has been enough for the government to keep them on the market for nearly 20 years.

We are somewhat helpless as individuals to change the growing tide of new GMO crops and number of highly toxic pesticides in the world. What we can do to make individual choices about what we eat and where we buy our food.

And, to think that once upon a time green paint literally killed people. Eventually, the use of this pigment was abandoned when it became generally known that people who wore clothes dyed with the substance tended to die early. To this day the French avoid making green theater costumes. [1]

[1] Jane Austen’s World, Emerald Green or Paris Green, the Deadly Regency Pigment

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/045710_GMOs_gene_transfer_DNA.html#ixzz3bv18BZOd

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