Gosh I'm so happy with our overwintered spring onions this week! We have attempted to overwinter bulbing onions for the last couple of years, but found that they would always start bolting (trying to flower) before they had formed nice bulbs. I realized that I needed to plant the seedlings much later than I had originally thought, so we planted these onions in mid-October instead of September. We also decided to use a couple of varieties that performed best in one of our seed suppliers overwintering trials. And voila! We have some pretty nice (and quite early) spring onions this year. I'm impressed with how healthy the greens look, as well. This is such a nice CSA item, because you can use both the bulb and the green onion part in your cooking this week.
The greens we have for you this week are really hearty and can all be eaten either raw or cooked. The baby kale is the red russian variety and is great for salads, nice and tender with crunchy, sweet stems. I will also use it in any number of cooking applications. The lunch I'm planning to make for my farm crew this week is a curry with lots of the sweet salad turnips, onions, kale and lentils. I love curries, because you can put all sorts of veggie combinations into them and they make a filling and comforting meal.
The earliest spring turnips are such a treat. If you are a new CSA member and haven't tried these yet or heard me wax poetic about their many uses, here is just a bit of that for you. The variety of turnips that we grow is called hakurei and they are also known as salad turnips because they are tender enough to eat raw. Their texture is somewhere between a radish and firm melon. In fact, when they are really sweet early in the year they almost taste like a melon. Two out of three of my kids will eat these sliced, raw with just a bit of salt. If you'd rather cook them, they are wonderful roasted, or in soups (or curries!), or just sauteed as a side dish. They develop a really melting texture upon cooking. Turnips are also fairly easy to grow, so we have a lot of them in early spring. Their greens are edible and pretty good too, but regardless of whether you cook the greens or not, the roots and greens will store best if they are separated and kept in a sealed container or bag. Turnip roots removed from their greens can keep for at least a month in the fridge.
Well, that's it for this week! This morning we have some ladies from the Organic Association of KY coming out to film for a virtual field day that we are hosting in July. More details about that to come!
Meal ideas this week:
Curry with pretty much everything in your share - turnips, onions, pac choi, and kale/spinach
Asian salad with pac choi and radishes and green or yellow onion
Stir fry with pac choi and turnips and peanut sauce and chopped green onion on top