I am reminded of the first spring flush of grass right now—bright, vibrant and growing by the day. The cattle are happily grazing out in the fields again and we began mowing our second cutting of hay yesterday. The vegetables, so stifled by the hot, baked ground, were unable to fight off any of the insect and disease pressure that came our way. They have put on lots of new, richly green growth now and are standing up strong against all of the invaders. The brussel sprouts alone have at least six inches of fresh new top growth, they’ve dropped all of their old, brittle leaves and seem to be making a new start.
The first dark and chilly August mornings always shift my mindset quickly back to winter though. Onions and garlic are inside drying for storage, potatoes and winter squash will be harvested soon. The vegetables fields are being cleared of summer harvest debris and seeded to a winter cover crop.
Next year’s vegetable field has received ten loads so far of last year’s compost, in preparation for spring planting. The back of my mind has filled with plans of buttoning up the buildings against the winter’s snow. Getting spaces ready for animals and vegetables to wait out the cold and wind that will be here so soon.
Making Beef Bouillon
Racey has been making daily pots of beef bouillon the last couple of weeks. Stocking the pot with beef bones, carrots, onions, celery and herbs fresh from the field. After cooking down overnight until it is thickly concentrated she freezes the bouillon in ice cube trays then pops them into freezer bags.
The individual cubes are rich, they need to be dissolved in one to two cups of water depending on how strong you want the broth. Each batch starts with the same ingredients but is a little different in the end. So, you will need to experiment a bit with your recipes. Please let us know how you like the bouillon and if it is more or less convenient than last year’s beef stock.
This Week’s Farm Shares
In the veggie share: fingerling potatoes, tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, eggplant, peppers, melons, cantaloupes, sweet onions, lettuce heads, mesclun mix, carrots, beets, cabbage, swiss chard, garlic, basil, cilantro and dill. We are distributing sweet corn this week, the kernels are sparse on these ears but they are still tasty and sweet. I believe a result of the dry, dry weather when the kernels were developing. Pole beans are coming up soon.
In the meat share: chickens, pork and beef cuts. Chicken organs, beef bouillon and lard.
Full and By Farm