Dog Days of Summer: Week #6

The dog days of summer are upon us! Are you ready for a little education? Ever wonder where the term “dog days of summer” came from? Originally named after the time when the dog star, Sirius, would rise about the same time as the sun. It’s often the hottest time of the summer and also the time when the least rain falls. According to the farmers’ almanac the dog days lasts for 40 days, starting July 3rd and ends August 11th. Oh man, are we in for it!

The cooler weather has sure been nice this week. I’m feeling much better after spending time inside and in air conditioning this past Sunday. The seeding and transplanting are back on schedule. We are also weeding like crazy. Somehow the weeds are finding enough moisture to grow incredibly well. Our afternoons are filled with pulling weeds out of the chard, kale, leeks, and celery. At the end of each weeding session we take a moment to view our progress. It’s quite satisfying to see what changes we’ve made in each section.

I just realized, I have an exciting announcemThe farm has also gotten a new arrival! Last week my new (to me) tractor arrived, thanks to my dad and his fearless trailer driving skills. We spent the Fourth of July unloading the tractor, figuring out how to get it started and looking for the reverse gear. We finally figured it out and toasted the new tractor in the shade! It may be hot, but there’s always something going on at the farm!

Driving the New Tractor

A Toast to the New Tractor

A champagne bath for my new beauty!

What’s In the Box:

Green Cabbage– Time for the traditional cabbage! That means coleslaws and cabbage rolls. Check out the easy roasted cabbage recipe. It brings out the sweetness in the cabbage.

Japanese Eggplant: These purple cylindrical veggies are great for roasting or grilling. I like them because I can add a little to a stir fry dish and not have any left over.

Cucumber: You know it’s the middle of summer when the cucumbers start coming in! Excellent and refreshing dipped in the green goddess dressing (recipe below)

Zucchini and Squash: Another great grilling vegetable. Sauteing is great too. Another veggie to dip into the green goddess dressing!

Chard: This leafy green is packed with iron and vitamins A & C. You can substitute it in recipes that call for spinach. The stems are edible too, just put them in the pan a few minutes before the leaves. They take longer to cook. I like to saute chard and then scramble in a few eggs for a healthy breakfast!

Pearl Onions: These pearl onions are a little bit bigger than usual. That’s because this farmer forgot all about them! Use like you would any onion.

Italian Parsley: Parsley is high in vitamin C and has become one of my favorite herbs. It’s way more than a decoration! It adds a fresh flavor to any dish and is wonderful in any whole grain or bean salad. Try out the chickpea salad below.

Basil: This popular herb goes well in almost anything. The best way to keep basil is on your counter in a glass of water, like a bouquet of flowers. The fridge is too cold for this tender herb and the water keeps it from wilting.

Recipes:

Chickpea Salad with Lemon, Parmesan, and Fresh Herbs– from bonappetit.com

Green Goddess Dressing– from chow.com

Thai Spicy Eggplant with Sweet Basil– from vegetariantimes.com

Roasted Cabbage Wedges– from marthastewart.com

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