Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Workday and Danny update

We had a really good workday and mini social on Sunday the 2nd of September. In fact every workday and social have been lovely, getting to know new people each time.

We've started having mini socials after workdays, these are great and everyone can get involved, bring a dish and enjoy a shared picnic together.

My favourite photo from the day was this one!

It was spotted by a member during the farm walk and I understand it to have been to the members supper that night.

Get well soon Danny!
Danny pictured here, has been experiencing weakness and numbness down his let hand side coupled with a bad headache.

It culminated in a brief spell in hospital but thankfully he is home but needs to try to relax a little more. We had help with last weeks harvest from Danny's parents Judy and Dave and also from the wonderful Claire Brammer! 
This week we knew in advance that Danny wouldn't be able to harvest at his usual speed so we put a call out, firstly to the Steering group and secondly the membership as a whole. The response has been tremendous. Danny had help yesterday evening, he's at the farm now with more help and we have a work party ready and eager for Friday!
As I put in a email reply to a member yesterday "We are feeling so blessed and lucky to have ended up surrounded by such thoroughly good and generous people."
The Friday work party is to dig the holes for the new polytunnel arriving any time now as our minds turn towards autumn and prolonging our growing season.

Although the last week and a bit has been difficult it has given us a boost in that it has allowed us the opportunity to see the community aspect of the scheme come into the limelight and shine.

To all those who have got in touch with help, support and messages of friendship, Danny and I would like to extend our dearest thanks and appreciation.

And finally here are last weeks recepes compiled by a fab Steering group member, enjoy!

This week some suggestions for using beans in their various forms
Broad beans, herbs and bacon
A delicious supper suggestion from Nigel Slater (Tender volume 1).  It is supposed to serve two, although in our household we’d want pudding afterwards, it is a light meal.
I recommend you use good quality dry cure bacon.  We always buy free-range, not only for the sake of the pigs but because it really does taste better.  The better quality dry cures should also avoid the horrible white liquid that appears when you fry poorer quality bacon.
250g shelled broad beans
6 spring onions
A small bunch each of dill and mint
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
Extra virgin olive oil
4 rashers smoked back bacon
First cook the beans for four or five minutes in salted boiling water.  Refresh them by running them under cold water, and then remove the greyish skins, reserving the tender beans inside.  You can get away with leaving the skins on the tiny ones.
Slice the spring onions finely and put them into a bowl with the chopped dill and mint.  Add the vinegar and season with salt and pepper.  Add enough olive oil to turn it into a thickish salad dressing.
Stir in the beans.
Fry the bacon until golden and crisp
Divide the beans between two plates, top with two rashers of bacon each and pour the fat out of the pan over the beans as a final dressing (it really does work)

Multi bean salad
I tend to make this with a mix of beans that depends on what’s available.  There are usually French beans, plus shelled broad beans, sliced runner beans, sugar snaps or even well rinsed tinned flageolet or cannellini beans if there’s nothing else around. Go for a mix of three or four, ideally no more than one sort of pulse, or it can get a bit turgid.
This dish is particularly nice with roast garlic, and I tend to stick a few whole unpeeled cloves of garlic around the Sunday roast just so I’ve got a few hanging around for this sort of thing.  Otherwise young garlic is fine or even garlic chives when there’s nothing else available.
We usually serve this with a variety of other salads (tomato salad, green salad, potato salad etc) as an accompaniment to a vegetable tart, cold ham or Spanish omelette.
A good handful of beans per person.  Aim for three or four varieties, as suggested above.
Roasted or young garlic, chopped finely
A bunch of parsley, chopped
Extra virgin olive oil
Lemon juice
Salt and pepper
Boil the beans until they’re tender to the knife (you don’t need to do this for any tinned beans you’re using, just give them a really good rinse), then refresh under cold water to keep them looking bright.  Put all the beans into a large bowl.
Stir in the garlic and parsley, and dress with the olive oil and lemon juice, using roughly three times the amount of olive oil to lemon juice.  Do this while the beans are still warm so they absorb some of the flavours of the dressing.  Season to taste.
Allow the beans to cool properly before serving.

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