Sunday, October 30, 2011

Beach Farm Rest

I was not a fan of this rare, early snow. But what grew out of it was an awareness that I needed to take a break, have a domestic weekend. I haven't cooked at home more than a handful of days since August, certainly not two in a row. I haven't seen much of friends, either, and the beach farm has been all but neglected. I did go to the studio for a couple of hours yesterday to do the little things that needed to be done, but then came home to make some pappardelle, pancetta, and Cipolle di Tropea (minus the Tropea) along with a sauce of garden tomatoes. Fresh, but frozen, green beans from the garden with healthy dose of unplanted rocambole garlic on the side.

Today we went to the beach farm, where it was a surprise to find it not as cold as expected. It was as if the northwesterly winds were picking up warmth and moisture from the bay on its way to us. The brassicas held up, naturally, to the cold and snow, as did the snap peas. Things looked only a bit more bedraggled than my last visit, two weeks ago, but this time the life of the garden produced positive feelings unlike that depressing sense of a season's end. Must've been the snow, a cold and sticking reminder of the brevity of life.

So why not slow roast a leg of lamb? Simmer some peppers and carrots and eggplants alongside. Mashed potatoes and roasted rocambole garlic too. I even have desert.

The cauliflower is heading up. Still, I do not think there is enough sun energy to maintain productivity at this time of year. These will be harvested sometime in the next three weeks.

Same goes for the other brassica. I've harvested small to medium heads from these plants, planted in late August from large starts. Too late? Sun too low? Or just poor cultivation practices?

 Side shoots. These too will be pulled in favor of garlic in the next three weeks.

 Last tomato hanging on to the vine. Tomatoes are not appetizing at this time of year.

Marriage of brassica and solanum. These tomato plants have been sprouting in the cauliflower bed for a couple of months now. Must be from last year's tomato patch.

 Snap peas tall and productive. They are not as sweet as spring, and their flavor a little more dilute. I think its the low-light, again. Planted in March it is cool, but the sun is burning strong.

 Basil headed for seeds. We'll dry these and collect seed.

The haul, not impressive, but still a fact. Five small but fat carrots, several small eggplants and poblano peppers, a handful of snap peas, and herbs. Long live the beach farm.

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