Monday, January 6, 2014

On the Farm - Preparing for the Cold

Row cover over the carrots and kohlrabi
The temperatures have been taking a steady nosedive over the last couple of days with our coldest night being tonight (hopefully only tonight)! We're anticipating the temperatures rising later in the week, but to prep for the cold temperatures we put the carrots and some of the kohrabi under cover to hopefully protect them.
Carrots under the row covers
We buttoned up the chicken "tractor" and gave the ladies (as we like to call them) straw to bed down in. Although, before we even finished covering up their enclosure they had made giant mess of the straw, so I am sure they are at least having a grand time. We checked in on the bees and ended up covering our smaller, weaker hive with a wool blanket that we will remove tomorrow during the day. 
More holes
We also dug a few more holes for the barn, but decided with the forecast of rain that we should hold off so we won't have to clean everything out again. We could not get everything covered up and because I hate to see things go to waste, I pulled a majority of the turnips, cabbage, and kale in the fields. This left me with an inordinate amount of cabbage, over 100 pounds of turnips, and a boatload of kale!

Turnips awaiting cleaning and processessing
In the Kitchen

With the onslaught of winter veggies I made a large batch of cabbage soup with a few carrots, potatoes, and local sausage. I have an enormous amount of kale I intend to turn into kale salad (we don't use pine nuts, but rather crushed walnuts or sunflower seeds and I don't use the yogurt), kale chips, and perhaps some kale soup. We also made a big batch of chili for the colder weather, using up a few jars of our canned tomatoes from the summer. How I hate to see those jars dwindle! We also pulled some kohrabi which I intend to test out a batch of fermented kohlrabi with. Tasty experiments (usually)! Luckily, the turnips store well, I just have to get the greens off of them and trim them up a bit before putting them in the refrigerator. If you have someone who does not like the strong flavor of turnips (like my farmer), try peeling them and roasting them. The peel is where a majority of that sharp flavor is and the roasting makes them milder as well.
Above is an image of true love- a farmer carting a kiddie pool full of clay for his pottery-on-the-brain wife. It's been hard to resist every blob of clay coming out of the holes we are digging for the barn, but I figure 400-500 pounds should suit me for a little while with some potential glazes! I hope if any of you are in cold areas that you are staying warm!

No comments: