Text Box: From the Vine						#6, wk of 6/22/09
    Common Good Farm 17201 NW 40th St. Raymond NE 68428                783.9005 farmers@commongoodfarm.com

The Lucky Us Field Day was great, despite another .80” of rain on Friday afternoon. It is amazingly drying out some so we started cultivating some Sunday after market. Saturday during the field day we pulled bindweed in the determinate & indeterminate tomatoes, peppers, melons & some zucchini & cucumber beds. It was quite muddy but it worked to pull out the bindweed by hand & will make it much faster & easier for us to go through with a hoe when it is dry enough. Thanks to Karen, Doug, Alex, Manjit & Charles for helping out…much appreciated. The rains continue, which perhaps I should be glad for, but we still haven’t gotten winter squash planted & our behind-ness will continue, so is putting some pressure on because one cannot regain lost days. The heat that is coming along this week will be good for tomatoes & peppers, but bad for a lot of the greens. The moisture will absolutely be a bonus in maintaining plants. Starting to look at remaining weeks & really hoping for the strong transition to tomatoes & other summer goods. It’s been so cool, it’s hard to see how quickly things might progress. We’re anxiously awaiting the emergence of the potato plants. They are barely coming up & we are mostly finding evidence of the seed potatoes having rotted. This would be sad. We’re holding our breath but it would be possible that that happened with the cool wet weather. Can’t think of tremendous amounts of other news – lots of weeding, pulling wholesale orders, CSA harvest days & market on Sundays. We’ve both been trying to catch up on paper work & me on months of back-logged farm bookkeeping. We have two more weeks for the Sunday Old Cheney Road Farmers Market. Right now it seems crazy to stop, but there is so much other to do. Evrett is scheduled to gradually ramp up his other business doing more organic farm inspections, so a balance of tasks & obligations. 
This past week it seemed like one of those weeks where the reminder(s) that we have inadequate storage (for hay, materials, tools) as well as cold storage for veggies, was loud & clear yet again. The doubled-in-size harvest shelter has helped wonderfully to keep us/veggies out of the rain & wind when cleaning & packing veggies, but also for covered storage for tools (like saws & such), as disorganized as it is. Someday something will come to fruition!
NOTE ON JULY FIELD DAY – July field day will be July 11, since the 4th of July is a Saturday.
General Veg Note: We tried to get things clean today and double rinsed most items, but it is still muddy enough that I am sure some of the bunched items still have some mud in there. Apologies.
Basil --   we basically grow one large leafed type, which is great for fresh eating as well as making pesto. We also put in some purple basil because it is so pretty & actually makes a nicer color pesto than you might imagine. Store in a bag, damp towel or stem down with just a bit of water in a glass. Can store it in water on the counter for a day or so or a bit longer in the fridge. Avoid any cold spots in the fridge that make it too cold – it will turn black straight-away if it gets too cold. Delicious on bruschetta, chopped on pasta, foccaccia, pizza, in pesto or try chopped into quark. Also great chopped with garlic & tomatoes with a splash of balsamic & drizzle of olive oil. Try & remember that when tomatoes come on.	
Parsley --  Don’t underestimate the power of parsley! We grow flat leaf & curly parsley. Personally am very partial to flat leaf, but they both have their place. Curly definitely has a stronger flavor. Store in fridge or dry on a cookie sheet & crumble into a jar when it is completely dry. Parsley really adds a great deal, in a subtle way, to soups, salads, cooked meats & much more. I am grateful when I have dried lots to use liberally in the winter & it is very easy to dry.									
Cabbage – We’re starting to lose some of these beauties to splitting because of all the rain. They look really lovely overall. This first variety that is coming on strong is Golden Acre, which is reliable one of the first cabbages. Cabbage is so versatile…raw in slaws or salads, or can steam quartered cabbage (not too long). Also good braised or sauted. Don’t overcook – that’s when you get stronger flavors (& odors).  Stores well in crisper drawer in fridge; remove outer leaves as needed upon used. Some are just starting to split or split after I cut them today…these won’t store as long, but still for a little while.
Turnips with green tops – the tops are a bit chewed up, but still tasty. These are much bigger than we thought they would be, but still quite tender & not mealy at all. Wonderful sautéed with garlic or onion & butter! Just begin with the sliced turnips first, as they take a bit longer to cook than the greens. You can also steam them & dash with a bit of vinegar & salt. Store in fridge, in a bag. Use sooner than later. Spring turnips are a different breed of goods than full varieties that are meant for longer storage. You can also use these tops in Radish Top Soup…they work great for that instead of or in addition to radish tops.
Hot Cabbage Slaw – from A – Z Cookbook
2 bacon strips or 1 T. vegetable oil			pinch of sugar
¼ c. onion (or scallions, says Ruth)			salt & pepper to taste
6 c. shredded cabbage					1T. vinegar
Chopped fresh dill to taste

Chop the bacon, fry in skillet, remove, drain on paper towel. Alternatively, heat oil in pan. Add onion & sauté until soft, about 5 minutes. Add 2 T. water, the cabbage, dill, sugar, salt & pepper; cover & simmer until wilted but still crunch. Add bacon or oil & vinegar & toss. Makes 3 – 4 servings.
Spring Turnips with Greens & Raisins – from A – Z cookbook. (I’ve included this especially because it is 1) how I cook & 2) have cooked it & is very nice. I cook this way anyway, throwing nuts & raisins into braised greens…
2 T. butter, divided			about ½ c. raisins
2 t. olive oil				salt
1 medium yellow onion, diced		12 oz. orzo or bow tie pasta, cooked & cooled (optional to use)
1 bunch spring turnips & greens

Heat 1 T. of the butter & all the oil in a large skillet over medium flame. Add onions & cook, stirring often until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, wash turnips & trim leaves from the root. Chop the roots into 1” dice. Discard any yellowed turnip leaves & roughly chop the nice ones. Once the onions are softened, add the turnip roots. Sprinkle with a bit of salt, stir & cover. Cook until the turnips can be easily pierced with a knife, about 8 minutes. Uncover, turn the heat up to medium high & cook, stirring now & then, until turnips turn light brown at the edges. Add the chopped greens & raisins & cook until the greens are wilted & tender, another 3 – 4 minutes. Add remaining 1 T. butter & salt to taste. Eat this as a side dish or toss it with cooked pasta for a main dish.

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