Last week ended on a refreshing note, with scattered showers and a welcome breeze. Enough water to quench the thirst of parched vegetables, but not enough to replenish irrigation ponds. These days, beggars can’t be choosers, we’ll take whatever water comes our way. Meanwhile, vegetables and weeds are engaged in their annual combat, one which your farmer wishes could be predetermined in the vegetables’ favour.
To stand idly by is not an option, the duel is scarcely a fair one, not unlike that between David and Goliath : a single vegetable plant surrounded by a multitude of weed seeds. And so it is that our long list of farm chores just got longer, to accommodate an almost Freudian obsession of ours : freeing our veggies from the clutches of the weeds that July always aids and abets, all the more so this year given that it is so far the hottest one on record in a very long time. It’s a movie we’ve played in before – in a follow-on email, I hope to be able to confirm a happy ending…
Everything is ripening in the fields, but our current focus is on our blueberry patch, where our earliest varieties are turning blue. The robins and blue jays have started sampling the goods, we sense an impending avian invasion. We’ve started covering the bushes with bird netting and will soon be looking for nimble fingers to harvest what I have come to consider the most emblematic of Québec’s fruits.
On the vegetable front, we were hoping to serve up the season’s first carrots this week, but they (and you) will have to wait another week. In the interim, we’ll be serving up more beets – an early root vegetable which is having a great run to date, dry spells notwithstanding. The nice thing about beets is that they can be stored in a fridge drawer and forgotten for several weeks, and remain none the worse for the wear. In our recipe tab, you’ll find a host of new recipes researched and organized by our friend Laure, including several beet recipes which you may find timely.