“Every thought you produce, everything you say, any action you do, it bears your signature.”
Thich Nhat Hanh
Week 13 produce list
- Sweet corn – all
- Hot peppers – all
- Tomatoes – all
- Cucumbers – all
- Napa cabbage – all
- Potatoes – all
- Beets – all
- Fennel – half
- Melons – full, single
- Swiss chard – full, single
- Summer squash – full
- Parsley – full
- Beets are an heirloom variety Bulls Blood – the greens are very nutritious
- Sweet corn is this year’s last and bears all the signs of the late season: some aphids and worms, small half-filled ears, and candy sweet
- Melons this year are cantaloupe, watermelon, and honey dew – everyone will receive several deliveries of these
- Last of the hot peppers – pop them in a freezer bag for later use
- Make some tabouli with the parsley or use it in a salad or salsa
- Some cool weather crops are returning: napa, bok choy, chard, brassicas etc.
- Hot summer crops are waning: cukes, tomatoes, peppers, corn, melons etc.
- Apples and winter squash make their appearance next week
- Our Fall Harvest Gathering is Saturday, October 10th from 2 – 8
- Wash all of your produce before you eat it
Butchering hogs …
I remember it as if it was yesterday, standing several paces behind my brother who held his 22 caliber rifle steady slow silent. There was a thick tension in the air, our blood soundlessly screamed. We had said our prayers of thanksgiving, had prepared our surroundings and now it was the moment to act. Dad poured the grain into the pan that faced my brother and then we waited as the moments burned like hours, then bang, the hog went down and Dad sprang in from the side to slit the jugular so it could rapidly bleed out. I noticed my breath in the crisp air of that early December morning and realized I had finally exhaled. I was still alive.
My memory is less clear of how we hung the hog from its back leg tendons with the loader of our John Deere 60 and proceeded to skin and gut the carcuss. I have no recollection of how it was cut up and packaged.
Fast forward forty years and I found myself in the same scenario albeit more involved. My neighbor and I purchased two hogs in late April that weighed around 70 pounds. Over the course of the next 5 months I watched them increase their weight to over 250. They ate lots of vegetables along with alfalfa hay and Swine 16 grain. They had room to run and play with our two goats and the chickens and they enjoyed a watering hole when the temperatures closed in on 90 degrees. I watered them twice daily by hand with a garden hose that allowed me to interact with them. I enjoyed raising Choppers and Porky and I am thankful that once again I could stand 3 paces behind the man who held the rifle. We skinned, gutted, cut up and packaged the meat at my neighbors place and all went well. Next time we will buy them 2 months later so butchering day fell later in the fall.
I grew up eating meat that we raised on the farm. I enjoy eating meat that I know, firsthand, where and how it was raised. I will think of those 2 guys every time I eat this meat and I will be deeply grateful.