Monday, March 07, 2016

Newsletter w/c 7th March 2016

The organic seeds have arrived so it's going to be a week of getting the poly-tunnel cleared up and re-covered, ready to protect the young crops as they germinate. the nursery area around the tunnel needs a re-vamp too so hopefully that'll get finished off at the same time. We have a couple of weeks to get that work out of the way before we really need to be getting seeds into trays.
In the field, I have sorted the gates that needed repaired and am halfway through building the new gates and dry-stane dyke into the yard area. The grubber will be run over the field tomorrow, followed by the dung and manure to feed the soil. The dykes are always a problem for me. i really enjoy building the walls and our land throws up plenty of stone so I'm never short of materials, but Its just such a slow job. I'm not particularly good at it and what looks like an afternoons work, in reality, takes a week. So, what happens is, I get started and I have a window of opportunity to get the job done. When I haven't completed the job in that time I have to move to another job and the wall gets left half built. I have 8 stretches of wall, either needing repaired or built, at varying stages of completion, around the field. One day they will all be complete.
I had my sword-fighting training day in the garden of a friend of mine at the weekend. This is in preparation for our trip to France for the festival celebrating Joan of Arc in Orleans in May. I have been asked to help represent the Scots Guard which accompanied Joan on her successful mission to lift the siege on Orleans. Sword fighting is not the only new requirement for the trip. After shaving virtually every day for the last 30-odd yrs, I have to grow a beard to enable me to look the part. The boys think this is hilarious.
they had a busy weekend too. Both boys were in try-scoring form for their respective age-groups at Currie Rugby Club. This Friday, they're both on the pitch at Broadwood in Cumbernauld for the Woman's and U20's international rugby matches between Scotland and France. Their playing Pipes and Drums as the pre-match entertainment with the Boghall and Bathgate Novice/Juvenile Band.

The Standard bags this week contain; potato, onion, carrot, savoy, beetroot, swede and parsley
The large bags contain the above plus parsnip, celery and kale
substitutions may occur.

Potato Solanum tuberosum.. The variety for the most part is Valor. Some of you may get washed potatoes. These have been washed to check for blemishes and disease. Soil acts as a natural preservative, so the washed tatties may not keep quite as long as the dirty ones. 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.

Parsley Petroselinum sp.  This is the more traditional moss-curled type of parsley Excellent for flavouring all sorts of dishes or cut into saladsor, cut over boiled potatoes, with a little melted butter. If it’s looking a bit limp when you receive it just trim the base of the stems off and pop into cold water, shake dry and then pop into a jar of water, covering the bottom of the  stems by about an inch.

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.

Swede  Brassica napa (1 head) The staple of the Scottish winter vegetable garden. Just peel the tough skin off and chop up and boil the sweet, crunchy, orange root. Best served mashed with a dribble of cream and a dod of butter through it. A spoonful of this will partner mashed tatties wherever they’re used and, of course, you can’t have haggis without it.

Savoy Cabbage Brassica oleracea . To cook, remove any damaged outer leaves, cut into quarters and remove the central core. It can be cooked in quarters like this in boiling salted water or else shredded and boiled or steamed. Here’s a recipe for Cabbage soup which will use up a few items in the bag this week: Prepare and wash the cabbage and shred it finely. Prepare and roughly chop, 2 carrots, the leek and 1/2lb(250g) potatoes. Put all the vegetables in a pan with 3 pints(1.5l) stock and a bouquet garni, bring to the boil  as it has a big and simmer gently for 30 minutes. Season to taste, sprinkle with parsley and serve at once.



Post a Comment

<< Home