Thursday, February 2, 2012

Firing Up the Greenhouse





Harvesting at this time of year is like scavenging and it takes a little restraint as well. On the one hand it doesn't look, at first glance, like there's much in the field. On the other, I have to be careful to leave a little for later in the season and not give it all out at once.

Today we thinned the mache, hoping it will keep sizing up, and also that some will go to seed so that it will naturalize and plant itself in future years.  Mache, also called corn salad, is the small green.  It probably won't keep as long as the other items so make a salad soon.  It's good with just a bit of oil and salt.  It does need cleaning as it tends to hold a bit of soil.  Clean off any yellow leaves but don't separate the florets, they can just be eaten whole.  Also new for this year is salsify, or oyster root.  It's basically the same thing as the scorzonera we gave out in December, just a white version.  Peel it, cut it in chunks and boil or roast it until tender.  You can fry it as well, but be careful because it goes from brown to burned quickly. Kale, leeks and frisee should all be familiar by now. The frisee has been great this year, the leeks are nearing the end, but they have nice long white shafts.  The kale seems more and more beautiful every harvest.  It really colors beautifully with the cold evenings.

I seeded the first flat for the new season today, a bit of emerald oak lettuce.  We cleaned up the propagation table and heat mats, reset the irrigation timer, and it all looks good.  With a little luck we'll have little lettuce seedlings next week.

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