“A farm asks, and if you don’t give enough, the primordial forces of death and wildness will overrun you. So naturally you give, and then you give some more, and then you give to the point of breaking, and then and only then it gives back, so bountifully it overfills not only your root cellar but also that parched weedy little patch we call the soul.”
~Kristin Kimball, The DIRTY LIFE: On Farming, Food and Love
At this time of year, July that is, many aspects of our lives can feel like a challenge on the farm. Physical, emotional and spiritual energy starts to feel depleted, relationships and communication become challenging, the weeds get the best of us, the amount of produce feels overwhelming and harvest seems endless. We are tired. We tend to ask ourselves… why do we do this? Are we NUTS?
No. The truth is we LOVE it. The other side of July is this: the produce is bountiful and there is NOTHING like biting into the first perfectly ripe tomato that is warm from the sun and snacking on random vegetables all throughout the workday. It’s very nourishing. And bringing our children out into the fields and watching them pick a cucumber or a leaf of kale and watching them munch it down and find that connection, that feeling is indescribable. The weather, this year in particular, has been absolutely amazing and a great blessing. Most crops are growing better than ever. Going for quick dip in the quarry on a hot July day makes the rest of the day that much more tolerable. Watching an indigo bunting sitting in the midst of a large patch of cucumber vines is a sight to behold. There is so much pride to be had in the amount of produce that is going out to all of you, for your bellies and your families. Being stewards to a piece of land feels like a great and wonderful task, like raising our children. And last but not least, spending most of the day outdoors and being dirty is really the best life for us.
Yes it’s challenging, but the nourishment we receive keeps us moving forward. We always get through July and then everything feels a little bit lighter.
Wishing you all a beautiful week!
On behalf of the entire HBF crew,
The goodness this week:
- cippolini onions
Wilted Kale and Roasted-Potato Winter Salad
Makes 4 (main course) or 6 (side dish) servings
- 2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves (3 thinly sliced and 1 minced)
- 1/3 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
- 1/4 cup well-stirred tahini
- 2 tablespoons water
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 3/4 pounds kale, stems and center ribs discarded and leaves very thinly sliced crosswise
- Accompaniment: lemon wedges
Preheat oven to 450°F with rack in upper third.
Toss potatoes with oil and 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper in a large 4-sided sheet pan, then spread evenly. Roast, stirring once, 10 minutes. Stir in sliced garlic and roast 10 minutes more. Sprinkle with cheese and roast until cheese is melted and golden in spots, about 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, purée tahini, water, lemon juice, minced garlic, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a blender until smooth, about 1 minute. (Add a bit of water if sauce is too thick.)
Toss kale with hot potatoes and any garlic and oil remaining in pan, then toss with tahini sauce and salt and pepper to taste.