From the Garden this Week - 20 January 2022
From the Garden this Week… Green Cabbage, Broccoli or Heirloom Cauliflower (Purple of Sicily or Graffiti), Chinese Celery, Mustard Greens, Beets (Red & Chioggia), Brussels Sprouts, Daikon Radish, Mustard Greens, Arugula, Parsley, Baby Carrots, Grapefruit, Meyer Lemons, Key Limes, Tangelos, Blood & Navel Oranges
Coming Soon… Butter Lettuce, Gorgeous Romanesco
Using Your Produce… By Julie Moreno
This week we have green cabbage and I have included a recipe to make your own sauerkraut. I make a batch or two each winter and have it on hand to serve on sausages or grilled pork tenderloin through the summer. You can also use it to top sandwiches or salads. Serve it over avocado toast. The acid formed during fermentation balances higher fat foods and I like to think that it aids in their digestion. If you have never made this before, I encourage you to give it a try. It is easy to make and just takes a few days on the counter to ferment.
Sauerkraut (Adapted from thekitchn.com)
1 head cabbage
1.5 tablespoons salt
1 wide mouth quart jar
1 small jelly jar (this should fit inside the mouth of the quart jar)
Discard any wilted outer leaves of the cabbage. Cut the cabbage into quarters and trim out the core. Slice each quarter down its length, making 8 wedges. Slice each wedge crosswise into very thin ribbons. In a large bowl, combine the cabbage and 1.5 tablespoons salt, let sit for 10-20 minutes. Pack the cabbage into the canning jar. Use a wooden spoon and, if you have it, a canning funnel; this will make the job easier. Once all the cabbage is packed into the mason jar, slip the small jelly jar into the wide mouth jar. Fill the small jar with clean stones or marbles to weigh it down. Ferment the cabbage at a cool room temperature, 65°F to 75°F, for 5 to 8 days. Check it daily and press it down if the cabbage is floating above the liquid. Over the next 24 hours, press down on the cabbage every so often with the jelly jar. Air bubbles form in the sauerkraut and the cabbage and liquid will want to expand out of the jar. Foam on the top, or white scum are signs of a healthy, happy fermentation process. The scum can be skimmed off the top either during fermentation or before refrigerating. If you see any mold, skim it off immediately and make sure your cabbage is fully submerged; don't eat moldy parts close to the surface, but the rest of the sauerkraut is fine. Cover the jar with a lid and store sauerkraut in the refrigerator. While it still tastes and smells good, it will be good to eat.
Roasted “Real” Whole Baby Carrots
Roasted “Real” Whole Baby Carrots (save one carrot green top) washed, scrubbed clean, unpeeled, and dried.
In a bowl, whisk together (you may double the following:) 1 Tbsp. olive oil, 1 Tbsp. honey, 2 tsp. cumin seeds, ½ tsp. cinnamon, ½ tsp. paprika, ½ tsp. salt, ½ tsp. pepper.
Coat the carrots and roast on parchment pan in 425-degree preheated oven 10 minutes, turn carrots and cook until slightly tender another 5-10 minutes.
Transfer to serving plate and top it all with the zest and juice of one orange (blood orange or navel), and 1 Tbsp. or more of the chopped green carrot top). Enjoy!
Fresh Made Dressing…
Make a quick dressing with our citrus. Use this dressing over shredded cabbage or greens, drizzle over steamed broccoli or marinate grated raw turnips or a salad with our arugula. The lemon juice or vinegar balance the sweeter juice of oranges or grapefruit.
Citrus Vinaigrette Dressing
1 tablespoon minced shallot or red onion
1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley
1 tablespoon fresh chopped celery leaves
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1 tablespoon lemon juice or white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons orange or grapefruit juice
½ teaspoon finely grated citrus zest
1 teaspoon honey
4-5 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
In a jar, combine all the ingredients except the oil and shake well. Add the oil and shake again.
Metaphors of Soil and Soul… How We Are Seeded by Ronda May Melendez
Over this past week, in a staff meeting, the topic of greenhouse seeding versus direct seeding arose. It fascinated me. The topic covered which vegetables being harvested in months to come need to be greenhouse seeded and which need to be directly seeded into the garden. Our little seedlings in the greenhouse are so beautiful. It is satisfying to see their restful green growth filter through the clear glass panes of the greenhouse.
I will admit that in the meeting I mentally checked out a bit. The little seedlings in my mind’s eye were snuggled deep in their little individual ‘beds’, i.e., plant trays. I imagined how lovely the warmth would be entering the greenhouse. The humidity reminds me of the South. For the same reasons, the little seedlings love it and thrive under these conditions. The walls of the house provide a buffering of sorts to the wintery ambiance. It all provides safety for the healthy growth of the seedlings.
I wonder if sometimes, the Lord provides us humans with a like provision in the winters of life. Sometimes, for our growth in fledgling areas, we need to begin our growth in the humid, warm safety of a walled environment. Perhaps, we would prefer to be considered strong enough to be “direct seeded” into the frigid ground of life’s garden. However, could it be there are times when we, like the delicate tomato seedling, would die and not bear fruit if we began life’s journeys directly seeded into the frigid ground? God, Creator of all life, certainly knows our frame and what it can handle.
Are we okay with being separated into a protective environment so that we can grow bigger in faith, stronger in our walks, and healthier in our fruit? God help us rest confidently in His greenhouse safety.