This week we harvested a mix of greens, roots and fruits for your share:
The bananas and mangoes are either green or ripening - if they are not ready to eat now, just wait a few days to a week for them to become sweet and decadent.
Botanically eggplants are fruits, but they are usually considered a vegetable. Eggplant is quite bitter until it is cooked, which transforms the flesh into a rich, complex, meaty treat. Try it roasted and blended into a spread like Baba Gannoush.
The onions in your box are green, sweet onions. Use them just like regular onions, except when it comes to storage - keep them in the refrigerator, and use them within a week or two at the most. They are not cured for storage, so eat them fresh! The onion tops can be used like chives.
The turnips are great raw or cooked, and their tops can be prepared like mustard greens.
The bagged braising mix is a blend of Asian greens that can be eaten raw in salads, but are usually eaten wilted or sauteéd with light seasonings.
There are two kinds of pac choy in your share this week - Joi Choi, which has a large full head, and Vivid Choi, which has large green leaves and multi-colored stems. They are highly nutritious greens, with plenty of Vitamins A, C, K and B-vitamins. They are also a moderate source of calcium, iron and other essential minerals. These Asian greens are often prized for their sweet, succulent stalks. Use Pac Choy like any other green leafy vegetable. The vivid choi is often compared to Rainbow Chard because of its colorful ribs and mild flavor. Bok choy is best eaten in a stir-fry, but can be prepared steamed, sautéed, braised or in a salad or soup.
Enjoy the harvest!
Claudia & the crew at Ridge to Reef Farm
Pictured above: onion starts being transplanted in the field earlier this spring; onions in the packing shed after harvest
Meet Your Farmers
From left to right: Jim, Claudia, Troy, Jerry, Dakota, Kareem, Jillian
We have a great team of folks here at the farm, working diligently to grow and share our mission of providing fresh, organic produce in the Virgin Islands. We'd like to welcome our new farm apprentices, Jerry Ceja Jr. and Dakota Beveridge, who arrived just a few weeks ago. Here are their stories:
I'm Jerry Ceja Jr from Denver, Colorado; I am a recent graduate of Eastern Washington University. I am passionate about the art & science of horticulture and the business of agriculture. Two role models that I strive to emulate are: George Washington Carver and Will Allen. Both of these innovators ushered in new paradigms in farming and both advocated sustainability, self-sufficiency and food security. By adopting their principles, I intend to follow in their footsteps; this path requires the utilization of the intrinsic wisdom of nature and the infinite capabilities of S.T.E.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics). My areas of interest include organic agriculture, urban agriculture/vertical farming and community supported agriculture. My plans for the future include an urban farm, research & development/production of industrial hemp and an off-the-grid family farmstead.
Greetings! My name is Dakota and I'm originally from Missouri where I received my BS in Sustainable Agriculture. I'm passionate about my health and also serving as a steward for the health of others. I believe eating good food not only makes people healthier, but happier as well. I look forward to meeting you in the future and until then, I hope you stay healthy, happy and whole!
Sautéed Bok Choy
Bok choy is the perfect vegetable for a quick, healthy side dish. Here, garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes add flavor, and a final drizzle of toasted sesame oil brings it all together.
Tahini - Soy Sauce Greens
Works well with bok choy or vivid choi
• 1 head bok choy or bunch vivid choi
• 1/4 cup tahini
• 1-3 tablespoon water or lemon juice
• 1-2 teaspoons soy sauce or tamari to taste
1.Wash and coarsely chop greens. Put stems into a steamer for two minutes; then add the leaves and steam for three to four minutes, until tender-crisp.
2. Drain, pressing lightly to remove excess water.
3. Mix the tahini, water or lemon juice, and soy sauce in a bowl. Pour the sauce over the greens and toss, or by let each person dip pieces of greens into the tahini-soy sauce.o edit.
This Week's Harvest
Turnips - hakurei
Bok Choy - joi choi
Braising Mix - blend of Asian greens
Ridge to Reef Farm serves the US Virgin Islands with certified organic produce grown with sustainable permaculture practices (and a lot of love).