Winter is the time for comfort, for
good food and warmth, for the touch
of a friendly hand and for a talk be-
side the fire: it is a time for the home.
Here at the farm we're taking much comfort in this quieter reprieve from business as usual, the calm of the farm in the gleam of winter sun, before spring time erupts in all her fervor. Insects bumbling around hushedly; trees yielding, denuded, to winter's pace; even the train depot reduced to a gentle hummm. The veg grows deep and strong in this season, setting its roots firmly. Strong soil, strong roots, strong plants. I am merely a steward of the Earth, and she rewards us with bounties.
Bounties of broccoli raab rapini florets and leaves. Eat the entire plant! (The bees implore you.) The stalks and stems are tender and perfect for chopping up straight into a stir-fry. Or eat them raw, as a snack, while you scour your refrigerator for tonight's dinner, and pace around your kitchen pondering all of life's intricacies and bewilderments. They're remarkably subtle with a hint of salty. I personally prefer them wilted in some vat of homemade veggie soup (note: a block of parmesan rind does wonders for any homemade soup broth, and rinds are dirt cheap!)
And then let me know what you think!
We also have our tried and true Red Giant Mustard greens. (Is it still okay to call them greens or should I call them reds? Or, better yet, purples?? They look purple to me...) If I were in your kitchen right now, I'd probably say to hell with cooking and just slice them up (stems and all) into a deliciously spicy salad. It's cold outside anyway, we all need to warm up a bit, and some raw greens might do us all a solid after all those holiday meals...
(pun only slightly intended)
Perfect addition to a yellow curry or anything you want to taste a bit more ginger-y. Use it like a bay leaf (let it flavor but don't necessarily try to choke it down.) This delight also makes a yummy night
Last, but definitely not least, you'll find our tried and true Tendergreen Mustard Spinach. You could call this plant my gate-way plant, second only to Hairy Vetch. Such a simplistic plant, yet one of the more diverse I've ever seen. Tendergreen was the first varietal of Mustard Spinach I ever planted. It's tender like a butterhead lettuce, juicy almost like cucumber in the stem, and ever so mild. Pairs great with bacon...
but really don't most greens?