November 24, 2007

End of Season

Here are some pictures from the end of the 2007 season:

cinderella pumpkin

green zebra & garden peach tomatoes

Jacob's Cattle beans

Holiday Farmers' Market

Much thanks to Seacoast Eat Local and the McIntosh Atlantic Culinary Institute for putting on the Holiday Farmers' Market. For a first run it was a huge success. It was great to see our regulars as well as some new faces. The music and demos by the chefs really made for a hoppin' good time. I am definitely looking forward to the December market.

September 8, 2007

jean's (baked) beans

here's my baked bean recipe!

1 lb. beans
1 head garlic, crushed
1/2 lb. salt pork, cut in half
1/2 cup sugar
2/3 cup molasses
1/2 t ginger
1 t dry mustard
1 t pepper
1 t salt

Soak beans for no more than four hours.
Boil beans with 2 cloves of the garlic until tender. Save the cooking "liquor."
Preheat oven to 400 degrees and place half of the salt pork at the bottom of the pot.
Add beans along with their cooking liquor, sugar, molasses, ginger, mustard, pepper and salt. Top with remaining salt pork.
Bake for four- four and a half hours. Let beans rest for at least a half an hour before serving.

August 8, 2007

first diggins!

They're finally here! Some purple-skinned new potatoes.taters

July 24, 2007


Audrey from Seacoast Eat Local just shared her secret Cousa (or Kousa) recipe. So promise not to tell anyone, alright? Cousa is a Lebanese zucchini that is traditionally stuffed with seasoned meat and rice, but she shows an easy way of enjoying the same great flavors. You can use the same preparation guideline for any summer squash or zucchini, but it's best with the real-deal light green Cousa variety. Try it!

July 19, 2007

Poor Man's Crab Cakes (vegetarian)

From Pia's Grandma Esler

2 Cups grated Zucchini (or other summer squash)
1 cup seasoned bread crumbs
2 eggs, beaten
1 Tbsp. mayonnaise
1 tsp. old Bay Seasoning

1. Combine ingredients
2. Shape into cakes
3. Saute or fry in small amount of oil until golden brown

Serves 4

July 18, 2007

The Meadow's Mirth Slideshow

There are plenty more photos of us on flickr. Some of them are from us, but most of the really good ones were taken by Jennifer Dickert. She's been taking great pictures of us and other vendors at the Portsmouth Farmers' Market.

crazy riot

I have a love - hate relationship with flower farming. It can be a lot of work, but it's times like this that remind me why I love it. Here are some flowers from back in June. The photo was taken by a friend as I was arranging bouquets Friday night before market.

July 1, 2007

Trouble in Paradise

CAUTION: the following scenes contain violence and graphic bug sex that may be offensive to some viewers. What can I say? This is organic farming at it's best, folks. Sometimes, it just plain "sucks."Cue the violins!

He was out for a walk alone, when suddenly...

disaster struck!

They thought they found the perfect spot to profess their love, but tragedy loomed from above the protective canopy of the squash forest.

Who is this enemy of cucumber beetles, squash bugs and Colorado potato beetles everywhere?

One man,

12 volts,

a bungee cord,

And a machine so terrifying they call it

Tonight at ten.

June 17, 2007

summer is upon us

...and the sun is finally shining! Here are some spring highlights:

the garlic is sizing up in the field

a trailer load of tomatoes ready for planting

Our newest addition: Planet Jr. junior-bought as a 'parts' machine, it has more parts than our old one that we used to plant last year's beans. And it comes in tangerine.
It's the only way to plant...

an acre of beans! Wheee!

April 13, 2007


...come she will!
So maybe last year this time we had peas and garlic coming up. And maybe we've had not one but two icy, Nor'easters come blowing through in the past few weeks. (It looks as though this Sunday should bring us a third!) But that's no reason to get down, right? Hmph. April. Meanwhile the greenhouse is practically bursting- you know with those early things that can handle cold weather. Um, yeah, cold weather is one thing. Multiple feet of heavy spring snow is a completely different scenario. We do have some stuff in the ground like this baby lettuce (note the snow in the foreground.) And if we can keep our hoophouse from collapsing (again) in this next storm, we'll be doing great! In the meantime, all we can do is plant, wait and plant some more. Or maybe I will just try to squeeze in another late-season ski across the field.

finishing off

This photo was taken a few weeks ago. As the fire died down outside, we were inside doing the final boil. Notice the condensation on the window in the background.

P.S. Extra! Extra! There's a great article in the Exeter newsletter about local sugaring. We're even in it!

March 10, 2007

first run!

March generally has perfect weather for Maple sugaring: cold nights and warm days. With the major cold snap we had this past week the dripping stopped, and the sap froze solid in the buckets. We had collected some first run sap a few days back, so we decided to give "Little Eva," Josh's evaporator its trial run:

The average ratio is 40:1 which means lots of boiling. The first run is usually the sweetest: we boiled down six gallons and got a whole quart, which is pretty good!

I meant to take a picture of the finished product, however - um - let's just say that jar didn't remain in a "photogenic" state for long! Hopefully I will get some better pictures this week. As of right now, the sap is back up and running and the forecast looks to be perfect for some serious sugarin'!

sweet signs of spring!

Our friends brought over some sugaring equipment: taps, buckets and lids. So we decided to go to town with the maple thing. The general rule of thumb is to start tapping on Presidents' Day. We started on February 26th.
Drill, tap,

drip, drip...
now all we have to do is wait for those buckets to fill up!

January 30, 2007

the bean lowdown

jean's beans- bean varieties

Jacob’s Cattle

This popular New England heirloom variety is also known as trout or Dalmation bean. This bean is excellent in soups and chili, and unsurpassed for baking.

Maine Sunset:
A wonderful baking bean, with a creamy texture and rich flavor when cooked . Also delicious in soups or pasta con fagioli.

Old-timey bean variety. Great baked or for use in soups and stews.

Brown Dutch:
Heirloom bean from Pennsylvania. Holds it's shape well, and has a nut-like flavor when baked. Also makes a great addition to soups.

Scarlet Beauty-SOLD OUT!!
New Hampshire Heirloom developed by Elwyn Meader. This mottled red and beige kidney-type bean is a knockout in chili.

Oregon heirloom. This truly unique bean keeps its color after cooking. Thin skinned and tender all-around bean.

Yin Yang:
Beautiful black and white markings resemble a Chinese Yin Yang. Excellent full flavor.

January 28, 2007

chilly bean field

Winter has finally settled in and I must say it feels as though all is right with the world again. We are in the thick of January's seed-ordering frenzy. There's nothing like pouring over catalogs with a hot bowl of soup as the cold wind blows outside. One of the best aspects of farming is the ability to start from scratch every spring- tweaking, improving, trying new things. Who knows what wrench the weather will throw into the works! For now, I am content to enjoy the pleasantly brisk arctic air. Here's me on one of our coldest days walking on the frozen furrows of the future bean field.