Tag Archives: LotFotL

Crock-Pot Chicken and Rutabaga Greens Stew

Ingredients

  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 cups rutabaga, cut into 1-inch pieces (approx. 1 large rutabaga)
  • 2 large carrots, cut into 1/4-inch thick discs
  • 2 cups rutabaga greens, chopped (approx. 1 bunch)
  • 1 small yellow onion, peeled and sliced
  • 1 orange or red pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp kelp flakes (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper

Directions

  1. Combine first 7 ingredients at the bottom of your slow cooker.
  2. In a separate large bowl, combine remaining ingredients. Stir to mix and then pour over top of the ingredients in the slow cooker.
  3. Do not stir. Cover. Cook on low for 9 to 10 hours or on high for 4 to 5 hours.

 

The Beekeeper at LotFotL

This week was a rite of passage for me on the farm. I harvested and extracting honey using all of my own equipment. In the past I have either not had any honey to extract or, in last years case, I took my honey to my mentor’s honey house to use his equipment. This year I made the final commitment, bought the extracting equipment and I am officially in this for the long hall. I am beekeeper.

Extracting is a really exciting time for the beekeeper. It is not so much how much honey you get or that you finally feel like you have something to show for your work. It more of a magical feeling. Seeing the honey flow out of the extractor, opens your eyes to a magical potion that bees alone can concoct. No one else has the means or the recipe to do it. It’s not just the sun, and the pollen and nectar all mixed together and dehydrated, (as if mixing these would be easy enough to do in itself). Honey has a living energy, a life force, and you can feel it in it’s concentrated form when you extract. This is one of the most divine substances on Earth and I feel privileged to be chosen to protect and keep the bees.

Honey bees have been domesticated since before the 6th century according to some sources. They are therefore now depending upon humans for part of their well being. There is a partnership and if one or the other can’t hold up to their end, the relationship suffers. As the beekeeper, I struggle at times to know what is best for the bee. She, though, is so forgiving and continues to give give give. I can only make this promise, that I will always make my decisions with her best interest at heart.

I try to be completely natural in my beekeeping. In this world the mites are the biggest challenge that our bees face, having showed up in the US in 1987. So far, the mite is winning. I use formic acid; considered a natural treatment and used by biodynamic beekeepers. Nosema , a small, unicellular parasite recently reclassified as a fungus, is another big problem. Standard procedure in the bee world is to issue preventative antibiotics for this. I am currently antibiotic free. If ever one of my hives needs treatment for Nosema, I, like most parents, will give the medication needed, but I do not give it as a preventative. I continue to feed biodynamic herbal teas in Spring and Fall to boost the bees immune health. I do not push or manipulate hives to produce more honey than can be produced in good health. I keep the hives in a location that provides diverse nectar sources. The land surrounding the hives varies between organic fields, CRP land, or marsh land, hopefully protecting my girls from poisonous pesticides. Most importantly, I leave the bees plenty of honey and avoid feeding sugar water unless the hive is in jeopardy.

Colony Collapse disorder, continues to be a problem around the world and we don’t yet have a solid answer as to what the cause is. In 2006, 50% of the bee colonies in the US died. The “experts” now say it is likely a combination of different stresses that we have put on our bees; exposure to synergistic pesticides, poor feeding habits due to loss of habitat and sugar/corn syrup feeding, increased migratory beekeeping due to agricultural mono-cropping, and exposure to new disease.

Our bees need help. If they don’t recover from the stress that they are under, both bees and people will suffer. Some 40% of the food we consume depends upon bees for pollination in some way. The world would be a very different place without our only domestic pollinators. Sustainable beekeeping and buying local is just a start to solving the issues. With all of the disease and stress impacting these insects we need to see big changes in modern agriculture, to truly see our bee friends come back to health.

I hope you will adopt me as your beekeeper by purchasing honey from our store. In turn you are supporting the health of our honeybee population and encouraging sustainable beekeeping habits. For more information about honey bees or what you can do to support the bees take a look at these resources.

Garlic Honey Elixir

  • Small jar (4-8 ounces/125-250ml) with a good lid.
  • Fill it with unpeeled garlic cloves.
  • Pour local honey over it all, using a chop stick to poke the honey down into the garlic.
  • Screw on the lid and label the jar with the contents and date.

Overnight, so it seems, the garlic and honey combine to create a divine elixir that may be taken by the spoonful right out of the jar. Almost immediately, it is ready to counter sore throats, colds, the flu, lung congestion, and sinus problems.

As it ages, both the honey and the garlic darken. After a couple of months, the garlic is suffused with honey and is lovely to eat.

Garlic honey has never spoiled, no matter how long I have kept it (at room temperature). It is not know to develop botulism. As with all honey, do not give to children less than one year old.

Susan Weed

 

Kohlrabi Potato Pancakes

Ingredients

  • 2 bulbs kohlrabi, peeled
  • 3 medium red potatoes
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1-2 cloves garlic
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 3 tablespoons rice flour (or sub 2 tbsp AP flour and 1 tbsp cornstarch)
  • 1.5 teaspoons, divided kosher salt
  • .5 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/3 cup oil (more if your pan is bigger)

Instructions

Chop greens and simmer in some water, or microwave-steam, just to soften a bit, while you’re doing other things.Peel kohlrabi, and shred along with potatoes (with skin), onion and garlic.Drain greens and add to other veg in a pile in a tea towel. Squeeze and drain, quite a bit, to get them as dry as possible.Mix three eggs and three tablespoons of rice flour (or sub 2 tbsp AP and 1 tbsp corn starch) with half a teaspoon each salt and pepper. Reserve remaining salt for later. Mix this in with the drained shredded veg mix. Form into small balls (bigger than golf, smaller than tennis).Heat oil in a skillet – less than a quarter inch of oil, until it spits at you when you hit it with a drop of water, or bubbles around the edges of a wooden spoon or chopstick.Add a veg ball to the hot oil and squish with a spatula until it’s about a half-inch thick. If the oil bubbles all around the edges, you’re set, add another and squish.Fry until golden brown on both sides, maybe four minutes total per side, but until done.Drain on a towel, sprinkle with additional salt and keep warm in the oven until serving time.Makes 8 pancakes, and they freeze very well. All the goodness of a crisp potato pancake, but with a little more excitement.

Details

Prep time: 25 minsCook time: 25 minsTotal time: 50 minsYield: 8 pancakes

Saturday’s Mouse July-3-2012

Greek Salad with Swiss Chard and Feta

This salad goes great with a grilled marinated chicken breast. I use a Greek marinade with many of the same herbs and spices.

Ingredients:

  • 1 med or 2 small Zuccini Squash; cubed
  • 2 bell peppers (one yellow and one red look nicest); cut into 1″ pieces
  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes (sun gold heirlooms are my favorite); chopped in half
  • 1 med sweet onion; cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1/2 bunch of chopped parsley
  • 1 6 oz jar of chopped Kalamata olives
  • 1 8oz package of feta cheese (crumble over the salad)
  • 1 clove garlic; minced
  • 6 swiss chard leaves (chiffonade and then cut into 1-2 inches in length)
  • 1 can of artichoke hearts (optional)

Dressing:

  • 1/2 t sea salt
  • 1/2 t black pepper
  • 1 t ground cumin
  • 1 t oregano dried
  • 1/2 C red wine vinegar
  • 1/2-2/3 C olive oil

Directions: Mix everything down to the swiss chard into a bowl and toss well. Make dressing by mixing all the spices with the oil and vinegar. whisk well or use an emulsifying mixer. Pour over the salad and mix well. Add more salt and pepper to taste. Serve

Fennel Orange Salad

makes 4-6

  • 2 med fennel bulbs, trimmed and julienned
  • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 T soy sauce
  • 1 T orange juice
  • 1 T minced fresh ginger
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 medium orange, peeled
  • 1 T fresh lemon juice
  1. Put the fennel and onion in a large bowl.
  2. Whisk together the vinegar, soy sauce, orange juice, ginger, and olive oil in a small bowl. Pour over the fennel and onion and toss well. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Chill the salad for 1 hr.
  3. Slice the peeled orange into thin round

2012 Summer Drought is a tough year for LotFotL Community Farm

Abe Lubetkin from WISN Channel 12 was out to LotFotL Community Farm on July 9, 2012 to talk about how drought is effecting our farm. This year won’t be easy for us, but we will continue to do the best we can and get veggies to our members.

Here is the video clip that aired. Take a look

Preserving LotFotL’s fresh garden herbs

span style=”color: #0066cc;”>Freeze fresh herbs from LotFotL CSA boxes in olive oil, broth or tomato sauce, depending on how you plan to use the herbs later. Use a blender or food processor, or simply chop and add the herbs with whichever base you prefer.

More on how to freeze, dry, and preserve your favorite fresh herbs.