Full Shares: Salad Mix, Red Kitten Spinach, Beets, Radishes, Baby Bok Choy, Braising Greens, and Spring Onions

Partial Shares:  Braising Mix, Arugula, Radishes, Baby Bok Choy, and Spring Onions

Hello CSA Members!

Anybody a fan of Space Balls?  If so, you know the “We’re going to have to go right to Ludicrous Speed” line. It’s the one right after Ridiculous Speed.  Well, I think the farm has hit Ludicrous Speed!  I don’t know exactly what it is this year, but we’re definitely scrambling to keep the ship afloat.  Maybe it’s that we’re under-staffed?  Maybe it’s the fact that the nights have been so warm this spring that everything is growing much faster than normal, including the weeds?  Maybe we just keep getting bigger, with the intent of offsetting that work with efficiency, and then the efficiency part doesn’t happen?   Maybe everything is going great, but the mosquito-induced loss of blood has altered my perception?

For example, today I put myself directly into the doghouse.  I was tasked with harvesting the salad mix, which I did successfully, and the arugula, which….well, I guess I fell prey to the temptation of efficiency.  You see, we typically harvest most of our greens using scissors, and a “shake and bake” method where we shake out the pale lower leaves onto the ground, add the baby leaves to our harvest container, and then trim the stems of the larger leaves before putting them in the container.  It is a long and arduous process, but it results in a superior product.  Today, I decided to take our “Greens Harvester” out for a spin, which is basically a cordless drill powered bandsaw than cuts and collects the greens.  One person can harvest 150 pounds in an hour using it, which is fast.  Problem is, there is no ability to sort or trim leaves, and no way to really monitor quality.   So, I went out and cut my 70 pounds of arugula in less than half an hour, only to bring it to the pack house to be washed and realize that the weeds, grass, pale leaves, etc.  required hours of standing over the wash station picking out the undesireables.  Bad Todd.  After 10 years of focusing on quality, the craziness of the farm these days seduced me into taking the efficient path, and I paid the consequence.  So, it looks like I’ll be cutting a new batch of arugula come morning.

In spite of my issues, the fact that it’s Memorial Day always helps add a bit of perspective to things.  We are privileged to be able to do what we are passionate about for work, and it’s important to keep that in mind.

This week we are back to our favorite variety of salad mix, called Salanova.  You might notice it has a different texture than the baby mix of our first week’s CSA.  And the spring onions have finally sized up, so that are back in the share’s this week.  We also have a new type of spinach we are trialling, called Red Kitten, which has a red stem.  And it’s the third week of Baby Bok Choy, so for those of you who haven’t gone the saute route, here’s one rendition.  And , here’s a noodle dish that sounds delicious!  And for full shares, Rebecca just pan fried some sliced beets in clarified butter, and then threw the beet greens in during the last couple of minutes…she says it’s a winner!

See you at CSA distribution!

Todd and the Two Bear Farm Team