Farming, a bit

We officially handed over our form and our check this morning to become members of the Port Hudson Organic Farm CSA. The weekly bushel distribution officially begins on June 6, but since we'll be gone one weekend in late June, we decided to go ahead and get some stuff today that would count against the week we're missing. We brought home 4 pounds of baby red potatoes and 2 dozen (well, baker's dozen) ears of corn! We also got to take a nice stroll around the farm to see all the ripening vegetables. The green beans looked beautiful, the tomato plants were staked and were bursting with green tomatoes just waiting for me to eat all of them, and the rest of the plants were just beginning their forays into fruit- and veggie-making.

Kent got to sit on their parked John Deere tractor for a minute, which was the highlight of his day and the thing he wanted to keep reminding us about when we got home. He has a John Deere tractor book, and I've learned that making things in his books come alive to him is one of the most fun things we can do with him right now.

We walked past the strawberry patch, and I knew it was just about the end of the season so I asked whether we could pick some and take them off their hands, hoping to get a bargain. Will, one of the owners, told us we were welcomed to try but that a lot of them were rotten already, but he said we could have them for free if we managed to find any, since he was about ready to pull the plants out. His wife, Thais, got us a basket to pick with, and Kent, Jack, and I hunted through the strawberry patch and managed to find a couple of pints' worth of delicious, sweet, perfect strawberries.

Here's a sign of how far I've come since my gardening has begun: there were bugs and worms all over the place, including crawling out of some of the berries as I turned them over, and I didn't freak out or shriek or anything. This is a major step for the woman who won't even pick up a dead cockroach off the floor, instead covering it up with something and waiting for her brave husband to get home. I sort of forgot about the bug factor when I signed on to help out and eat food from an organic farm, but it turns out not to matter quite so much as I would have thought.

I washed the berries as soon as we got home and stuck them in the fridge, knowing how quickly they can become overripe at this point in the season. After a nice lunch out with our engaged friends Jennifer and Brett, we all came back to our house so that Kent could nap, and we shared our berries with them over ice cream. There are still a bunch in the fridge that will be devoured tomorrow morning. I wish Kent would eat more than one berry at a time, but someday, he'll eat more normal food. Right?

Taking care of the corn has been a multi-stage process today that still isn't quite complete. I cut off the ends, soaked them, roasted them in batches of 8 (all that would comfortably fit in the oven at once), and am now about to go slice the cooked corn off the cob, some for freezing and the rest for some sort of corn salad that will be gracing us this weekend. Jack gets the special job of shucking, which is so easy when the corn is already cooked and the silks just fall right off.

Another sign of my progress: when I was shucking the ears that we ate for dinner, I found a tiny worm at the top of one of them (yes, a cooked worm — eww), and Jack found another. Again, I didn't freak out, and I had warned Jack about it so he didn't freak out, either. Worms are a natural part of growing things, and I get that now. Once I cut off the end where the worm had been, everything was just fine.

Kent, Corn Fiend Extraordinaire, dispatched two ears of corn by himself. He adores this stuff, and he does a great job of getting all the kernels.

I'm not sure yet what we'll do with the potatoes. My favorite way to cook potatoes is to dice them and roast them with olive oil, salt, and herbs, but I'm not sure whether we'll eat all four pounds that way or end up doing something different with the rest. Potato salad might be called for, since it is Memorial Day weekend and something inside me wants to have summer picnic/cookout food.

Off to take care of the corn before I fall asleep. 5:30 wake-up calls are not fun, and I need to catch up.

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Sounds like you are having waaaay too much fun!

For your potatoes... it takes 2 days, but try this recipe. "Cold-Fashioned Potato Salad" from Alton Brown at foodtv.com. I leave out the cornichons because we are not a fan, but it is by far the best recipe I have found for potato salad.
Indeed, we are. =) Just wait until Will can pick things! And thanks for the potato salad idea-- I always trust Alton's recipes!
Wish I was there to watch Kent eat two ears of corn, and to eat some myself. We have had good corn here in the last few weeks, no idea where it came from other than the gas station.

My word to post is missesto, which I think is pesto made in Mississippi, or a person that always "misses to" because they are late. Right?
Hey Grandma and Grandpa are up at 5:30. Too bad we can't help...read a book, get some hugs...Love ya...enjoy the worms!
I want pictures of Kent eating corn. I know they would be amusing.
We went to the Farmers Market yesterday and there were some strawberries left. It didn't last long because Travis threw up in the backpack. Maybe next weekend?
Everything sounds great about your CSA! I know what you mean about bugs. I don't mind bugs outside or in the garden, but I still dislike them inside.
I am far too frightened of the worms in corn. That has to be handled by John because if I find them I can't eat the corn... My imagination just gets going and I can't stop it.
Strawberry season is just starting here (this weekend was the official kickoff with tons of small-town strawberry festivals), and I think we're going to go to some local organic pick-your-own farms the weekend after next. In July, we'll do peaches and melons! Woot!
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