This past week, on a beautiful sunny day, we spent our time harvesting, bundling, and hanging all our garlic to cure. As this is our first year growing garlic, it was a learning experience for us, but everything went smoothly and we now have many bundles of fragrant garlic hanging in our wood shed. The garlic will take 2 - 4 weeks to cure, and then we will cut off the stalks and store for future use. This means that you can look forward to cured garlic in your shares for September and October. I am already looking forward to next year's garlic crop, as I ordered the seed garlic this week and will be trying some interesting varieties. Prior to growing garlic, I didn't give a lot of thought to the environmental impact of garlic. However, as I have done my research, it has become apparent that growing and eating locally, organically grown garlic is important. Most garlic found in the grocery stores is of one variety and the majority is grown in China using significant amounts of chemicals, including pesticides (like methyl bromide, an ozone depleting substance), whiteners (like chlorine), sprout inhibitors (like gamma radiation), and more. This garlic is then able to be sold at low prices because the wages paid to labourers is lower than many parts of the world. In contrast, our garlic is grown without any of those chemicals (or others), in soil that is amended with organic kelp powder and rock flour, and covered with straw to deter weeds and pests. And it doesn't have to be shipped across the world to be enjoyed! Unfortunately, conventional garlic is not unique in it's environmental impact. Much of our favourite produce has similar origins. You don't want to hear my thoughts on conventional, grocery store tomatoes! Of course, I am "preaching to the choir", as each of you has chosen to support a local farmer and eat sustainably grown produce. Thank-you for making that important choice!
On the topic of tomatoes, Rob and I shared the first ripe orange cherry tomato yesterday and it was delicious! This means we can expect tomatoes to start being available to share members shortly. They usually come on slowly and then suddenly, overnight, we are swimming in ripe tomatoes.
This week I will be bringing green peppers as part of the share. While I know we all prefer the sweetness and beauty of the colourful, ripe peppers, I need to lighten the load of the pepper plants so that the remaining peppers can ripen. Later in the season we can expect red, orange, and yellow peppers, but for now we will enjoy the green.
Green and Yellow Beans
Broccoli OR Eggplant
SHARE MEMBER CONTEST: Can you guess what you are looking at in the picture below? The first share member to email me with the correct answer will win a jar of honey, when it becomes available in a week or two.
Roasted Green and Yellow Beans
Any quantity of beans, ends trimmed
Garlic, minced (optional)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Toss all ingredients, except garlic, in shallow oven dish. Roast for 8 minutes or so, and then add garlic, if using. Toss and roast for another 2 minutes. Remove and serve immediately.