As the weeks progress, each day the field is monitored. Some crops are watched for adequate water, others like peas and tomatoes sometime need help trellising, potatoes are watched for those pesky potato bugs, and still others in anticipation of when a new crop will be ready, this week Garlic Scapes and Beets will find their way into the CSA box!
Garlic Scapes are the immature flowers of hard neck garlics. The scapes can be used however garlic is used as it has the same great flavor. They don’t keep as long as garlic so it is best to refrigerate and use them up as quickly as possible. If you don’t have a need for them, an easy way to preserve it so whip up a batch of Garlic Scape Pesto. Perfect on pasta, bread, and sandwiches. I like to mix some in goat cheese or cream cheese for a great dip as well. Garlic Scape season is short, as the by the 4th of July, they are often overly mature and become fibrous so enjoy them while you got ’em!
Hanging out in the box with the scapes are leaf lettuce, spinach, arugula, more head lettuce, green onions, Swiss chard, rhubarb, bok choy, some beautiful dill weed, AND the first of the beets. Today’s mix contain the ever sweet Golden Beets and beautifully stripped Chioggia Beets. There are only a few as I had to scrounge to find enough sizable ones but they are a great hint of what is to come. This time of year the tops are also exquisitely tasty. They can be juiced, steamed, creamed or cooked up in this tasty rendition. There will be plenty of beets spaced through out the season including red ones, striped ones, golden ones, and cylindrical ones. This small taste is just tease of what is yet to come.
This weekend I get the great excitement to get to Iowa for a little camping trip. While Iowa is not always at the top of everybody’s list of great places to go, it does mean I get to make a stop at Seed Saver Exchange. Seed Savers is a nonprofit organization that focuses on preserving rare vegetable and plant varieties and also makes many available to the public, many of which find their way to my garden. No better way to preserve these treasures than to get people eating them. Hopefully I can document the place and share it with you in the future and NOT come home with a pile of seed packets.