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It's been a number of years since we have grown Spanish black radishes, but this latest crop has more than made up for the lapse! Esther and I were excited to discover these slow growers were so big and beautiful today. It was a sweet reward for two frozen farmer gals... They are absolutely gorgeous! We hope you are as excited as we are to try them out - both raw and cooked!

Spanish black radishes have been around according to some sources for thousands of years. Apparently, they were grown and consumed in ancient Egypt for both their culinary and medicinal qualities. (They were considered sacred by the Egyptians!) Speaking of medicinal, black radishes are very high in the phytonutrient glucosinolate, which helps promote a healthy digestion and provides liver detoxification and gallbladder support. And like all antioxidants help protect against cancer.

In the kitchen, we can use black radish like horseradish. It is hot and spicy! In fact, another name for it is the "Parisian Horseradish." Diced it into dips like guacamole, mashed into cream cheese or sour cream, or shredded as a topping for tacos! Or - if hot and spicy isn't your thing, like all root crops, you can roast them! Cooking mellows these bad boys just like their milder cousins, the white and pink radishes. (I can't believe I just called them "bad boys" ... I've been married to Bryan Pruett a LONG time!) Stir fry them into potatoes or eggs. Slice them thinly into soups and stews. If you google recipes, you'll be amazed at the different ways to eat these incredible, healthy treasures!

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This is Esther Clark. Born in Vancouver, Washington, she came to us via Thailand, Kentucky, Connecticut, The North Pole (!) and Alaska. She is a very well traveled young lady! And she's only 20! She has three brothers and two sisters. She's in the middle. She is working for us as well as TWO other jobs! So she's a busy gal! Esther loves the outdoors and and while she's not completely sure what she wants to do in life, she KNOWS it won't be an "office job!" One of her three jobs is at Martin Kennels where she is learning dog training! She also stocks shelves at Walmart - at night! That's how she's able to fit us in! We're not sure how she does it all! She's been with us less than a month and she's already made herself indispensable to us. We're grateful to CSA member, Maranatha Clark, her aunt for recommending her to us!

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We're looking forward to this week! Although a bit of a frost is in the forecast midweek, we are hoping that these cooler temps will allow the fall tomatoes to continue to set and ripen. One thing that the heat did (among many) was slow the ripening of the tomatoes. We don't recall that ever happening before. Although the drought of 2011 was even more serious than this summer, the heat wasn't as intense for as long. The many, many weeks of over 100 degrees stressed the plants. It's a mystery they even survived. But they are setting fruit and looking pretty good right now. We had enough Sun Gold cherries for distribution last week! That was an unexpected surprise for our members! We're hoping for a repeat showing this week! We are at that place in the year when there is less and less of the summer bounty and the fall/winter crops are not yet producing. This is when we really appreciate the support of our CSA. The farm continues to have expenses whether there is a lot of food or not. This is the difference between a hobby gardener and a commercial farm. The hobby gardener simply turns their attention to clean up and preparation for the next thing, the commercial grower is under pressure to have produce to sell ( and in our case ,distribute to members). We love that our community gets that! We all rejoice and share in the bounty and we wait patiently together for the veggies that are coming. And they are coming! Right now we have thousands of plants in the ground and greenhouse at all stages of maturation. We have cabbage, kohlrabi, bok choi, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, collards, mustards, turnips, radishes, spinach, and lettuce. And we're about to start carrots and beets! In another month or two potatoes and onions will go in the ground! YAY!


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