Send Help, We’ve Been Overrun!

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We upsized our CSA share this month. Matt wanted in on the delicious local goodness, and just look at it, who wouldn’t?

What’s pictured here is only about half of what we’ve got, the photogenic part that doesn’t need refrigeration. Lovely tart and sweet seedless grapes, and some wee apples like I haven’t had in ten years (not that those big ones aren’t beautiful too). We have more “zucchini” (it’s not, really, but that’s what they call it) than we have ideas, and so much basil. That’s not even to mention the tomatoes.

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That’s a very full IKEA salad bowl, maybe five pounds of gorgeous, juicy, flavorful tomatoes. (Hi mom! Jealous?) I don’t know how we’ll get through them all (or even most of them) before next week when we’ll undoubtedly get even more; it seems a crime to cook or can tomatoes that are at their peak like these.

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And then there’s this guy. Dino-carrot took down Dog with ease, then had a fairly gory meal of it. Lots of carrots, big carrots, small carrots, and of course their overlord, which may technically be a rude one, but mostly reminds me of  T. rex.

We have green beans all over the place, and some very pretty okra which is only absent because Matt was already cooking it. An eggplant that looks startlingly like a baby’s head is nestled in the fridge now, too. I remembered I wanted to take a photo of it after I’d already put everything else away and was losing the light fast. I made last week’s cucumbers into fridge pickles (they need more dill, must get on that) and this week we got four more. I put them on top of the pickle container as a threat, just so they know what happens to cucumbers that try to go off.

The potatoes from last week and the week before are almost gone, and I’ve finally caught up with all the lettuce. We’ve just one small head now, which we got today, but now there’s a big pile of onions waiting for someone to pay attention to them. Oh, and beets, loads of beets. I love them but I have no idea what to do with them, really.

All of this is grown about six miles from our apartment, in a Demeter-certified biodiversity urban farming operation. Everything is non-GMO and, when possible, they avoid hybrids. They also told me that they consider some things that are acceptable in organic farming a little harsh. The results are spectacular, obviously, though I find some of their explanations questionable (the word “homeopathic” has come up a couple of times in the newsletter, as well as a claim that raw green beans are high in cyanide, so I’ll be taking it all with a grain of salt).

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In other news, the beer I bottled at the beginning of July is nicely conditioned, and since I still had some Blue Moon on hand, and since the beers are similar in style, I thought a side-by-side comparison would be in order.

Pictured above are Blue Moon on the left, and Navelgazer Wheat Ale on the right. Navelgazer has a much deeper color than the Blue Moon, and it has a corresponding richier, maltier taste, but it’s balanced. The flavorings I added to the priming solution (peel of one navel orange, a few cracked coriander seeds, and a couple slices of fresh ginger) are present, but subtle. I started with 12 bottles without raspberry added. There may be one or two left now.

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On the left here is Blue Moon Blackberry Tart Ale, with Navelgazer Raspberry Wheat on the right. Blackberry Tart is from the seasonal variety pack, and along with Short Straw and Rounder, I’d buy it on its own without hesitation. Fruity, but not overbearing. The Blue Moon is a bit clearer than my Raspberry Wheat, which is unfiltered. Blackberry Tart’s fruit flavor is crisper, but Navelgazer is, to my palate, a very pleasant blend of raspberry melded with fruity yeast. Highly drinkable and probably a bit stronger than the 4% ABV estimated during bottling.

I haven’t forgotten that this is a yarn-wrangling blog! Back to that in a few days, I promise.

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3 thoughts on “Send Help, We’ve Been Overrun!

  1. Om nom, pasta with all the vegetables. I only realized after I sliced up a shallot that I should’ve used one of the small onions. I also made use of the good parts of the damaged green beans and split tomato.

    There are still two okra left if you can think of anything to do with them. Not enough to fit into any recipe, but maybe enough to pickle with your next batch (though they’re quite large, and okra is usually pickled whole).

  2. Yes, I am jealous! I think you’ve got a full time job just trying to use all of that beautiful produce. Green beans are done here. Broccoli got eaten by green worms, before there was any broccoli. We have green tomatoes that we hope will turn red & ripe someday.

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