sweet potatoes

green onions, lettuce, planting party, scallions, Spring, Sunday, sweet potatoes

Planting Party This Sunday, the First Day of SPRING!


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Hello all! We are having folks out to the farm this Sunday. We’ll be getting started around 1pm. We’ll be planting onions, scallions, and lettuce. Since our taters didn’t get in until a couple of days ago, the seed isn’t ready. However, if we have enough folks out here, we’ll also be cutting our seed potatoes to get them started and ready for next week. Please come out and join us. The more folks we have out here to work, the less it will feel like work and the sooner we’ll be finished and ready to socialize – and most importantly, eat yummy food! We’ll likely be making a vegetarian chili and salad.

If you do plan on coming out, there are a few things you might (but don’t have to) bring with you:
– chairs (for hanging out and eating)
– water bottle/container
– sunscreen
– hat
– good comfy shoes (and wear work clothes)

For directions, click here.

Here are a couple pictures of our friends helping us plant onions last week.

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beets, carrots, pictures, planting, sweet potatoes

Spring planting time is upon us…


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Hello all,
The season is shifting into a higher gear! Patricia and I took our dog Charlie to the farm today to plant potatoes and spring onions. What a beautiful spring day it was today. The sun was out, it was warm and blue birds were fluttering about and looking for grubs to eat in the freshly tilled soil. I felt the swell of spring and the upward energy that spring brings…Always inspiring and full of hope of the coming growing season. Here are some photos of our day on the farm today…Enjoy!
My car full of cut seed potatoes.
Marking a bed for potatoes with markers on a rake.
  
Patricia & Ben, happy together in the sun…
  
 Freshly transplanted beets. Can you find Ben in the photo?
  
Patrica’s lucky 30 year old German sneakers – they have a long history of wear and tear but still going strong!
and Ben’s bare feet…
 Baby leeks waiting to be planted
  
Ben holding up a row cover (veggie blanket)…
We on the front page of the Western Wake Farmers Market website this week! We’re famous! 
We’re ramping down the winter harvest now. We harvested all the winter carrots Friday and they are in storage. This is most likely the last week we will have collards, brussels sprouts, chinese cabbage and vitamin green. Carrots will be available for a couple more weeks and won’t be available again until May. We will have fewer crops available until the spring crops start rolling in, so expect less variety for the next 4 weeks or so.  We will certainly keep y’all updated on what’s available.
This coming Tuesday, March 9th, we plan to have produce pickup at our house, 604 Sasser St., between 4:00 to 7:30 pm. The next NCSU delivery will be Wednesday, March 10th. Remember to have your orders placed by Monday evening.

A few of you occasionally may have trouble placing orders. Please make sure you receive an automated confirmation email a few minutes after you place your order. If you do not receive this email your order was not placed and we will not receive it. Please try again or email us your order to shields.ben@gmail.com or call Ben @ 919-800-8898. Also, we do not accept online payments, e.g. PayPal. We only accept payment of cash or checks at pickup.

Purchase of vegetables is made through our online store-
http://www.vendio.com/stores/bensproduce.

Available new vegetables:
SPINACH

Current vegetable availability includes:
baby beets
brussels sprouts
carrots
Chinese cabbage
collards
scallions
lettuce
sweet potatoes
Vitamin Green (a mild Asian leafy green)

Late winter /early spring vegetables will include:
arugula
broccoli raab
mixed baby lettuce & greens
mizuna
radishes
swiss chard
tatsoi
turnips


Be good and eat well,
Ben & Patricia

bell peppers, recipes, spinach, sweet potatoes

Spinach and Sweet Potato Salad


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I told a few of you I would share this recipe. I found it in the March 2010 issue of Prevention. We haven’t had a chance to try this recipe yet, but it sounds really yummy and we’re gonna give it a try this weekend.

Here’s what it looks like (YUM!)

The recipe calls for bacon, but I think it would be just as good without it, substituting sunflower seeds (or your favorite nutty topping) instead.

Spinach and Sweet Potato Salad (p. 154)

2 lg sweet potatoes (about 1 1/4 lb), peeled and cut into 1″ cubes
1/4 c olive oil
1 tsp salt
2 thick slices bacon (2 oz total)
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 sm red onion, halved and thinly sliced
1 Tbsp minced fresh ginger
1 tsp ground cumin
1/3 c orange juice
1 lb fresh spinach leaves (or you could use our baby tat soi)

1. HEAT oven to 400F. Put sweet potatoes on backing sheet, drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the oil, sprinkle with 2/4 teaspoon of the salt, and toss to coat. Roast, turning occasionally, until crisp and brown outside and just tender inside, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven but leave on pan until ready to use.
2. COOK bacon in skillet over medium heat while potatoes raost, turning once or twice, until crisp. Drain on paper towels and pour off fat, leave any darkened bits in pan. Chop bacon. Put pan back over medium heat and add remaining 2 tablespoon oil. When hot, add bell pepper, onion, ginger, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Cook, stirring once or twice, until no longer raw. Stir in cumin and bacon. Stir in organge juice and turn off heat.
3. PUT spinach in large bowl. Add sweet potatoes, warm dressing, and freshly ground black pepper to taste and toss to combine. Taste and add salt if needed.

bok choy, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, chinese cabbage, collards, CSA, green onions, greens, kale, lettuce, mustard, radishes, recipe ideas, spinach, sweet potatoes, swiss chard, tatsoi, turnips

Holidays! Holidays! Holidays!


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Hello and Welcome!

A big thanks to our new customers from the neighborhood who stopped by Tuesday night to pick up some produce! The holidays are upon us! We’re headed to Tennessee to see Patricia’s family and some friends there. It will be a needed break for us, though I will be working some. I’ll be fine-tuning our farm and CSA plan for the coming year. It’s very exciting, thought provoking and a lot of work! Anyhow, we’ll be announcing the CSA soon!

During these cold winter months, please be aware the weather may postpone our harvest of your produce. In response to this, we may postpone pickups by a day or two. We will provide primary notice of pickup changes via email (especially for those of you who place orders) as well as via blog and online store. Thank you for being flexible with us!

Next Tuesday, December 22nd, we will have produce pickup at our house, 604 Sasser St., between 4pm to 7:30pm. We will not have produce pickup Tuesday, December 29th. We will return with pickup Tuesday, January 5th.

Purchase of vegetables is made through our online store www.vendio.com/stores/bensproduce.

Community Supported Agriculture:
Information coming soon!

Current vegetable availability includes:
bok choy
cabbage
carrots
chinese cabbage
collards
green onions
kale
lettuce
mustard greens
radishes
spinach
sweet potatoes
swiss chard
tatsoi
turnips

No longer offered:
broccoli
mixed greens

Future winter vegetables will also include:
arugula
baby beets
broccoli raab
brussels sprout
mixed baby lettuce & greens

Recipes:

Quick White Bean Stew with Swiss Chard and Tomatoes

– serves 2 to 3 –

Ingredients

2 pounds Swiss chard, larger stems removed, and leaves chopped
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 cup canned tomatoes, chopped
1 16-ounce can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
Salt and pepper
Grated Parmesan

Procedure

1. Fill a large pot halfway up with water. Bring to a boil and then toss in the swiss chard leaves. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 8 minutes. Drain the chard in a colander.

2. Wipe out any excess water in the pot. Then pour in the olive oil and turn the heat to medium. Add the garlic and crushed red pepper and cook for 1 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3. Add the tomatoes, turn the heat to medium-high, and when the mixture comes to a boil add the beans. Cook for 3 minutes, stirring often.

4. Reduce heat to a simmer and add the chard. Cook for 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add some grated Parmesan to finish. Enjoy!

Golumpki’s or Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

We made these the other day with our cabbage, carrots and turnips and they turned out phenomenal! Give these a whirl, you might like them.

– serves 4 –

Ingredients

1Tbsp Olive oil
1 leek or onion
2 med. turnip, cubed small
2 med. carrots, cubed small
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
1 cup cooked rice
16 oz cooked ground meat
1/2 cup bread crumbs
2 eggs
2 Tbsp chopped parsley
1 Tbsp lemon juice
pinch ground coriander
salt & pepper
1 cabbage head

Sauce:
1 onion finely chopped
1 cup broth or stock
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 cups crushed tomatoes

1. Brown ground meat.

2. To make the filling, heat the oil in a frying pan over medium low heat. Add leek or onion, turnip, carrots and celery and cook, stirring often, for about 5 minutes, until softened.

3. Remove from heat and stir in meat, rice, bread crumbs, egg, parsley, lemon juice and ground coriander. Season with salt & pepper.

4. Preheat oven to 325 F. Oil a 9×13 baking dish. Cook the whole cabbage in boiling water for 2-3 minutes, until pliable. Drain and rinse under cold water. Peel off whole leaves to stuff. Pat dry.

5. Lay leaves flat and make a pile in the middle of each, about 1/3 to 2/3 cup depending on the size of the leaf. Roll up each leaf, folding the sides to enclose the filling in a neat parcel. Place the rolls, seam side down, in the baking dish. Pour in stock. Bake for 40 – 50 minutes.

6. Meanwhile, heat the oil for the sauce in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened. Stir in the crushed tomatoes. Reduce the heat to med-low and simmer about 10 minutes, until slightly thickened.

7. Using slotted spoon, serve stuffed cabbage rolls topped with the tomato sauce. Enjoy!

Happy holidays and many thanks!

Ben & Patricia