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Last Call for the loved Giant Winter Spinach...Introducing Beet Greens and Lettuce!

Since Eastenn Dutch and I have been reading many short stories out of a book called Grandfather Tales, collected and retold by Richard Chase, I can only think to use the phrase "Law Me" to sum up Foothill Frolic Farm on Gammon Creek over the last 5 weeks. For this post, I am keeping it short in order to present the current produce offerings at the Self Serve Stand. Soon to come though, will be a wrapped up summation of Farm accounts for the last 5 weeks.

What a great Giant Winter Spinach harvest we have had this year. I know here, we have eaten about 1 pound of the large, tender, and sweet leaves every day since I started harvesting it back in early April. We load it high and heavy on Sandwiches, make large salads, use it chopped to mix into ground beef when grilling out hamburgers, add it into pasta dishes or to make green pesto sauces with, and lastly, a star topping for tarts and pizza. When a certain veggie is in season, I like to take full advantage of it. This is a good note to remember when you become a seasonal eater/local produce shopper. Spinach really only comes around twice a year here in TN, early Spring-mid Spring and then again in the Late Fall-Early Winter. It is way more exciting to partake in what is available here in East TN, on a seasonal basis, than buying the same available product at the grocery year round. With all this said, this weekend is the last weekend to swing by to get the Giant Winter Spinach. I have been harvesting this Spinach about every 4 days to keep it coming to you fresh in the Self Serve Stand cooler and the last harvest was put in the cooler fresh on Friday morning. I am sad to close out the spinach season, but it had a good long run of a 5 week availability. Please, take advantage and snatch up your last bags of the season.

1/2 lb = 1 Bag = $5.00 or **Buy in Bulk to Save...2 Bags = 2 lbs = $8.00**

The Radishes have also been wonderful additions to many salads and if you are a Radish lover like I, they are adored just eaten whole with a little salt, butter, and cheese, or just flat out whole and plain. Spring Radishes are a short term storage crop, so it is normal for the leafy greens to start yellowing, but the actual colorful bright edible ball will be good for a long while after the tops have yellowed and died back. Just as the Spinach, this will be the last of the available Sora Red Radishes. Hopefully you made it by to try all three varieties that were offered this year...Heirloom French Breakfast, Pink Beauty, and Sora Red.

1 Bag = $2.00

Moving forward, the next best green to get all the rave is the Young Beet Greens and Baby Roots. Beets are in the same Family as Spinach so they can be used in all the same ways in which I mentioned using Spinach prior. The best way to handle these are to take them out of the bag, and either chop or just use your hand to separate the top leafy greens from the bottom stems and baby roots. This is not a precise thing, just quickly perform this task. I often just grab half of the bundle and do it with one quick twist of the wrist. Put the greens in a bowl and the stems and roots in another bowl and wash each before using. The best way to use the stem and roots are to sauté, either left whole or coarsely chopped. I use a large iron skillet and just add olive oil, and salt. Any seasoning that suits your fancy can be used at this point, but if you are trying these for the first time keep it plain and then start adding layers of different seasonings. I generally stir around and sauté and then put a top on and turn down the heat. I like to also put in garlic and onion. The top greens can be added into this sauté as well. These will be the most tender and flavorful greens, stems, and baby roots you have ever had. Beet Greens, Baby Roots, and Stems sauté down quicker than other greens. Sauté of Beet Greens and Baby Roots is an excellent side to a grilled cut of Beef or Chicken Meat. Once soft and sautéed they can be used as Pizza Toppings and Tart Fillings. Just like mentioned above with the Spinach, a great way to add greens into a diet is by fine chopping the Beet Greens and mixing them into a Ground Meat like Beef and then making hamburger patties. I use 1 lb of ground beef, 1 fine chopped onion, and a large volume of fine chopped Spinach or Beet Green Tops, salt and pepper. I make 5 large patties with this to grill. They come out so juicy and tender. The only difference is that one has to be more careful in the flipping of the hamburgers on the grill, they almost want to fall apart, but they don't and if you can get the first flip turned with a couple cracks they will meld together nicely by the time the grilling is complete. Children and Adults, that otherwise might not love greens, will excitedly eat them in hamburgers. Touchstone Gold Beet Greens and Baby Roots, is the current offering. There will eventually be Heirloom Formanova, and Heirloom Detroit Dark Red varieties. Then finally, there will be the regular beet roots and green tops to look forward to.

1 lb = 1 Bag = $3.00

The Lettuces are coming along nicely and we had our first variety in a salad mix last night. I am thinking I will start harvesting Lettuce for the Self Serve Stand by the end of the day, starting with Ezrilla Green and Burgandy Red Leaf in a Bag...really Beautiful Color, Texture, and Flavor.

1 Bag = $3.00

I also might be offering what I call a "Spring Salad Bag ", which would have a variety of salad greens and scallions in it. Everything you would need for a delicious and seasonal salad. Plus a quick recipe for a tasty vinaigrette. All one has to do is pour out the "spring salad bag" in a bowl, rinse and spin in a salad spinner, or lay out to dry on a towel Then coarsely tear, chop or keep whole and toss with the suggested vinaigrette. A good way to try different seasonal spring salad greens.

1 Bag = $5.00

The Sugar Snap and Snow Peas have finally started to bloom. It has been a very slow grow for the peas this year, as they in particular did not enjoy the record dry month of April. I would predict these should make in the next two weeks.

I have pictured the Green Tops of the Potatoes, as I am so glad to see them doing so well. They have had to work extra hard to perform this year, as they were knocked down not once, but twice from the freezes we encountered in April. Third time was indeed the charm and soon it will be time for the first hilling. Please be looking forward to the early season Superior Heirloom, as they will be the first to be harvested sometime in early June.

Please know that from this point forward there will always be something fresh and exciting at the Foothill Frolic Farm Self Serve Stand, so just make it part of your week to swing by. I generally do not post until I am harvesting something new, but once harvesting starts for a particular crop it will be available regularly until I post its goodbye, like with the Spinach and Radishes. Please continue to pass these postings along. Also, I had a few customers that placed special orders for Spinach last month. With that being said, I am open for customers to send a message for a special order. For example, if you know you want to pick up on a certain date, and you know you would like 2 Bags of Beet Greens and Baby Roots then just let me know either by e-mail or message 423 483 7091 and I will have it for you in a cooler with your name on it.


Allison Mills Neal

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