What’s in the box?
Blackberries, baby kale, cucumbers, tomatoes, green beans, garlic, onions.
- Blackberries are always a highlight of the summer. It seems almost everybody enjoys blackberries. Picked properly they are a little sweet & a little tart. If they aren’t quite ripe, they are sour. Too ripe and they are soft & mushy, but incredibly sweet. We try to pick them as ripe as possible, but while still firm. Unlike raspberries, blackberries are not hollow, but have a centre core which is soft & edible. The only way to eat a blackberry is to pop the whole thing in your mouth. Try to take a small bite, and you are covered in black, staining juice. Blackberries are best eaten fresh, but also make great jam, juice, sauce, ice cream …
- Please note that we do use pesticides on our blackberries. For many years we did not. That was one of the good things about growing blackberries – no spraying necessary! Then along came the spotted wing drosophila. Spotted wing drosophila is an invasive vinegar fly that has the potential to cause extensive damage to many fruit crops (especially soft fruits like berries and dark coloured fruit like blackberries). In the last few years it has been found throughout much of southern Ontario along with most of the fruit-growing areas of North America. It has become a chronic pest in berry and tender fruit crops in Ontario. Effective biological controls are not yet available. There are cultural practices that we use to help reduce the insect populations, but the only effective control right now is chemical. And so we spray regularly to try to kill the spotted wing drosophila and protect our blackberries (and elderberries). We would rather not! But then again, we would rather not have worms in our blackberries!
- Baby kale is great eaten fresh in salads. But it can certainly be used like the larger kale leaves and cooked in your favourite recipes too.
- We have been receiving lots of positive feedback on the white cucumbers. Many people prefer them to the more common green ones. The plants continue to do well & are producing an abundance of delicious, crunchy, cucumbers. Of course we also have green cucumbers for the traditionalists!
- Your share this week will contain a colourful assortment of tomatoes – both cherries & the larger beefsteak types.
- Of all the vegetables we grow, green beans are probably my least favourite. The only way I really enjoy them is in the Thai Green Beans recipe. We have posted this recipe before, but here it is again (see below).
- The new garlic isn’t quite so new anymore! It is quickly drying out, so it is maybe not as juicy, but it will keep better. If you are not using it up, leave it to dry out completely in an airy, dry area. Then it will last all winter.
- I am still disappointed in the tiny onions we grew this season – I keep thinking of those huge ones we had the other year. But it turns out that many of you prefer the small, single serving size. That almost makes me feel better!!
Thai Green Beans (from Simply in Season cookbook)
2.5 cups green beans – steamed for 8-10 minutes or until bright green & lightly crunchy.
1/4 onion chopped
1 Tablespoon fresh ginger – peeled & minced
1-2 cloves minced fresh garlic
In wok or frying pan, heat 1 tsp sesame oil and sauté about 5 min until onion is tender.
1.5 Tablespoons soy sauce
1 Tablespoon Thai sweet chilli sauce
Add to taste.
Add the steamed beans & stir to coat with the sauce.. Simmer over medium-low heat for 5 minutes. Serve over rice. Garnish with cashews, sesame seeds, or slivered almonds.