Agriculture

Slow Food
We will be tracking “Slow Food” activity this year.  To send a description of your activity please click on the Slow Food form.  Use the form attached.  Make a copy and attach your filled out form as directed on the bottom.  We will be posting the information here on the website for everyone’s enjoyment.

If you enjoy the information that follows about WYCK house, garden, and farm, click on this link to see more www.wyck.org.

Urban Agriculture

Letter from Wyck’s Farmer

Hello Friends,

Wow!  I can barely believe this is the last market in August. The summer has flown by and, while I’ve been busy preparing the farm for the fall, I still have trouble realizing it’s almost here. This week, I seeded my last transplants of the season, which is always a memorable point in the year. For me, seeding transplants starts in late February and is continuous from that point on, starting with spring and summer crops like kale, tomatoes, and peppers and ending with fall ones like lettuce and pac choi. To realize that this weekly task is over for the next six months definitely marks a turning point in the season!

However, it’s still summer and the weather will likely reflect that for several weeks to come. While certain summer crops, especially the more disease-prone ones like summer squash and cucumbers, are decreasing or nearing their end, others are still coming on strong. Colored peppers, which take a long time to mature, are just hitting their peak now and should continue for some time until temperatures really drop. My favorite of the varieties I am growing is called “Carmen.” They are in the Bull’s Nose family of peppers due to their elongated shape and pointy tip. While these may resemble hot peppers, they are in fact among the sweetest you will find, far sweeter than most bell peppers. Another variety that I have fallen in love with this year is called Antohi Romanian. This pepper is slightly smaller in size than your average pepper. Rather than ripening from green to red as many peppers do, Antohi Romanian peppers start out a pale yellow and turn to a gorgeous sunset-orange and then to red as they mature and sweeten.

Another plant that ranks among my favorites and that has really come into its own on the farm is the herb Sage. I grew up in a household that used herbs very sparingly. When I began to cook on my own as an adult and was introduced to using herbs by friends, it was a life-changing experience. Herbs can quickly take a meal from ordinary to divine, especially fresh herbs whose flavor far outclasses that of their dried counterparts. And among these, Sage is my all-time favorite. I honestly cannot think of a good way to describe its flavor, but it fits in wonderfully with all types of food, especially as fall approaches. I love to add sage to roast potatoes, baked winter squash, and pasta dishes. Sage also goes wonderfully with meat dishes, especially slow-cooked or baked ones. I like to roll the leaves up and cut them into narrow strips before adding them to a dish.

This week, I discovered my new favorite way to eat sage, which I am including as the recipe for this week. This extremely simple recipe for Fried Sage Leaves reminds me of Kale chips, but personally I think it beats them by a mile. If you are intimidated by fresh herbs, I guarantee you the fastest way to get over that is by frying them up in oil! I couldn’t stop myself from eating all of the fried sage leaves immediately, but they could also be used as a garnish in pasta dishes, sandwiches, salads and soups, or chicken dishes.

The sage plants on the farm are growing like crazy, so I’ll be bringing more sage than usual to the market this week. I greatly urge you to try some of this versatile herb in the weeks to come. Additionally, make sure to pick up your favorite summer crops as the shorter days and cooler temperatures of fall will start to decrease their yield in the coming weeks