Monday, January 18, 2016

Newsletter w/c 18th January 2016

The Baltic weather conditions of the last week have been a bit of a shock to the system after the mild (relatively) temperatures, we'd been experiencing. It was only in last week's blog that I was dreaming of extended growing seasons and bumper crops. Of course, we need the low temperatures to kill off pests, and veg like parsnips and swede have an enhanced flavour once they've endured a frost, so I'm not complaining. it's also perfect conditions for walking out in the countryside. I'd rather be walking over a hard frost-covered moor path than stumbling up to my knees in mud every few metres.
The low temperature isn't great for all veg though and frost damage is very hard to detect in its early stages. should you be less than happy with the quality of the produce you receive - please let me know.
Keir and Finn have both been out socialising with friends last weekend, and spending plenty of time out in the snow, so we havent quite got round to ordering the seeds yet for this season's crop, so we need to get onto that this week and get things started.
We still havent got up to speed completely with eggs yet. We are short again this week, new orders and back-dated deliveries have meant that a few deliveries on Wednesday will miss out on eggs again. I hope this will resolve itself soon.
The standard veg bag this week contains : potato, carrot, onion, kale, red cabbage, beetroot and leek.
The large bag has the same in larger quantities and in addition has : pumpkin, tomato and broccoli.

Potato Solanum tuberosum.. The variety for the most part is Valor. They are very easy to prepare when they’re as fresh as this and really only need a wash and a scrub. Potatoes are the only commonly available source of B3 and Iodine. Excellent source of Vitamin C and also Vitamin B6, Potassium and fibre.

Onion  Allium cepa.  Used in stews, pasta dishes, soups.  Source of Vitamins A and C, Iron, Calcium and Potassium .

Carrot Daucus carota Carrots are eaten fresh in salads or cooked in just about any way you like. They are an excellent source of Vitamin A and also contain significant amounts of Vitamins B, C, D, E and K. and Potassium.

Leek Allium porrum  Excellent source of Vitamin C. Particularly used to give soups a lovely creamy texture. As leeks grow they tend to lock soil into their leaf axils, so be sure to rinse them well after slicing them up. A nice idea for cooking leeks is to sweat finely sliced leeks in butter for 5 minutes, pour in a glass of red wine and simmer until reduced. Season and serve.

Red Cabbage Brassica oleracea Capitata Group..(1 head) Excellent source of Vitamin C and phytochemicals and also contains Vitamin B6, potassium, fibre and calcium. Here’s a recipe for Braised red cabbage which uses apples rather than the orange based gravy I gave you last time. Braised Red Cabbage: Remove the outer coarse leaves and cut the cabbage into quarters. Remove the  has contiutough coresand shred the cabbage finely. Peel core and grate 2 cooking apples and mix with the cabbage. Melt 2oz.(50g) of butter in a pan, add 5fl.oz.(150ml) white wine vinegar and mix in the cabbage; coat thoroughly; then cover with a tight fitting lid and simmer over a gentle heat for 1 hour. Add a little more vinegar or water if the cabbage threatens to stick. Stir in 5fl.oz. (150ml) of red wine or blackcurrant juice, season to taste with sugar. The cabbage will have a fairly sharp flavour. Cover with a lid and simmer

Beetroot Beta vulgaris  Contains Vitamin C folic acid and potassium. Can be cooked in various ways, but don’t peel the beet until you’ve boiled it as this stops it ‘bleeding’. My recipe for you  this week completely disregards this, so have a pair of rubber gloves and newspaper handy. I’m going to tell you how to make Super Boost Juice – Put on the rubber gloves, spread out a newspaper and peel  your beetroot and cut it into chunks. Take 4 apples and quarter and core them. Take 4 carrots and trim and peel them. Take 1cm/1 inch of fresh ginger and peel it. This is easily done by scraping the skin off with the side of a teaspoon. Process all the ingredients through a juicer. Stir and serve immediately, adding ice if desired.

Tomato Lycopersicon esculentum.  Can be eaten fresh in salads or cooked into sauces, the famous soup, or for the unhealthy option fried for breakfast.


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