Winter Share # 6
My Fine Homestead Newsletter
In This Issue:

  1. Announcements
  2. Your Box this Week
  3. Recipe - Pea Shoot Salad with Shaved Parm &
    Lemon Vinaigrette

  4. On the Farm . . .

Today is the  6th winter box

Upcoming Winter Share dates (1st & 3rd Thursday of each month) - 
February 3 & 17, March 3 & 17.

Sign up (with a payment) for any of our 2017 shares by January 31 and receive 5% off.

Previous newsletters are on our  website and our  Facebook page .  

?? Questions ??   

Your Box
Pea Shoots - 1/2 lb, See recipe in this newsletter - many more online. Pea Shoots are great added to a lettuce salad, sandwich or breakfast scramble. Or try eating them like we do - by the handful!
Leaf Lettuce Mix- 1/4 lb 
Spinach - 1/2 lb
Carrots - 1 lb (last of the carrots until the spring carrots are ready)
Garlic* - 1
Onion* - 1 yellow 
*We are noticing that some of our onions and garlic cloves are green in the center when we cut them open - they are starting to sprout a new onion or garlic plant. The shoots are edible - like green onions or green garlic. Just chop and use with the rest of your onion or garlic.

plan for the next box - spinach, lentil sprouts, garlic 
Pea Shoot Salad with Shaved Parm &
Lemon Vinaigrette

1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 small clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon white balsamic or white wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
sea salt
4 to 6 cups lightly packed pea shoots
2-ounce piece parmesan
Freshly ground pepper

In a medium bowl, whisk together the lemon zest and juice, garlic, and vinegar. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil, whisking until the vinaigrette is emulsified. Add salt to taste.

Place the pea shoots in a large bowl. Use a vegetable peeler to shave the Parmesan over the salad. Drizzle the vinaigrette over the pea shoots and cheese and toss to coat. Season to taste with pepper. Serve immediately.

If your microgreens have some soil on them, give them a light wash and air dry them in a colander for a few moments. (They are very fragile so need to be handled with care).
Place them in a bowl and add the remaining salad ingredients.
Stir up your vinaigrette in a little jar and pour on top of the salad.

Yield: 1-2 servings

Keeping it Real on the Farm . . .

It has been quiet, wet, and icy on the farm lately.

Our days are spent getting chores and projects done. And solidifying plans for the upcoming growing season. In the last newsletter I laid out some of our changes for 2017. Follow this link to read about them.

It's funny talking about planning for the growing season when we are actually growing vegetables now. Of course it isn’t on the same scale, but we have flats of microgreens covering tables inside and other greens outside under covers. They aren’t growing much yet - not until the days get a little longer in February, but they are there. And we don’t have much tending to do. Winter around here is also a growing season, just a slower moving. 

red lettuce in the unheated greenhouse
trays of pea shoots in front of the window

Spring and summer with their comparatively crazy-fast growing are much sexier. It is hard not to get antsy for them, and so as I said, more of our energy is focused on making plans for future months.

I long to be in the field with the warm sun and blue sky above my head instead of working under a roof of plastic. I even yearn to crouch next to a bed of peas or carrots and pull weeds the cultivator missed. Since these are my dreams, I never include gnats or mosquitoes, and my back and legs never ache. I focus on the parts that satisfy my need to feel the rich dirt crumble through my fingers, connecting me to my agrarian roots.

I trust that this season of dangerous ice will indeed cycle into one of lush abundant growth.

Sometimes, though, it is hard to believe it will happen. Sometimes I can’t dream, and that scares me. I get caught up in concerns about climate change and the challenges that lay ahead of us. I worry. What will happen to us all if the earth warms several degrees? What if there are too many pests to grow quality produce? What if the weather is too hot and dry, making water scarce? What if we experience devastating flooding? Can we adapt quickly enough? Can we save what needs saving? Will we be able to anticipate new needs and work together to find solutions in a changing environment? I don't know - especially when some don't even believe it IS happening.

It can be overwhelming. I want to let it be someone else’s problem even while I know that isn’t realistic. This is the planet our children are inheriting. Aaargh! I want to curl under my covers and go back to my mosquito-less dreams. But I can’t dream. Heck, I can’t stop thinking.

I can’t ignore it. My only course of action is to try to affect change by making choices that factor the environment in them. It is the best way to contribute. So I make phone calls to government officials to voice my opinion. I replace the cloth shopping bags in our vehicles so we aren’t caught at a store needing plastic ones. I consolidate trips to town to save gas. And of course, we recycle. I talk through decisions aloud, hoping to guide our children to be conscious consumers. And I know none of that is enough, so I’m challenging myself to focus my time wisely and to keep educating ourselves.

And I start to dream again . . . I imagine the sun warming my bare skin, the plant sprouts pushing up through the ground, the birds building nests to lay their eggs in. I hear Aidan ask me to take a walk to the creek. I feel the responsibility of people purchasing shares from our farm comfortably settle on my back.

And I make more plans for the future because we will continue to farm sustainably. I feel hope, and it feels good. Whatever comes our way, we will meet head on – farmers and eaters together.