nanette

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So far nanette has created 35 blog entries.

Saving summer squash

frozen squash

Summer might be coming to an end but the wonderful flavor of summer squash doesn’t have to become a distant memory. It’s easy to freeze our yellow squash for recipes you’ll make later this year.

If you’re pressed for time, don’t sweat. The hands-on part takes no more than 10 minutes.

Here’s how to easily and safely freeze summer squash:

Start by bringing a pot of water to a boil. Since we’re freezing, this can be any saucepan or stockpot. A canning pot isn’t needed.

Using a mandoline, food processor, or your favorite vegetable knife, slice the squash into evenly sized rounds (disks)… about 1/2 an inch thick.

Once the water is boiling, get a large bowl and fill it half full with ice water. Set this on the counter near the stove so you’ll be able to quickly transfer the squash from the pot to the bowl.

Add the sliced squash to the boiling water and leave it for 3 minutes. This is a great time to clear a flat spot in the freezer.

After 3 minutes remove the squash using a slotted spoon and quickly dunk it in the ice water. Give it a few minutes to cool, then transfer it to a strainer or lay it out on a kitchen towel and pat dry.

Put the cooled, dried squash in freezer bags – don’t overfill them! Lay the bags on a flat surface in the freezer. Don’t worry, once they’re frozen, you can move them around in the freezer to make room. Laying them flat to freeze will make them easier to store in the long run. 

It’s as easy as that! Now you’ll have squash to use in your favorite skillet, sheet pan, and casserole recipes for up to a year!

Source: National Center for Home Food Preservation

2020-09-30T13:16:27-05:00September 30th, 2020|

Okra is a superfood!

This post is guest contributed from The Collected Seed. For the full article or to learn more about growing veggies, native plants and composting in suburbia, check out the website www.collectedseed.com.

It’s not often that we get to celebrate comfort food as being good for us, but prepared the right way, Okra is one we can nosh on and feel good about ourselves!
 
Obviously, to leverage the health benefits we’ll have to skip the cornmeal breading and deep-frying, but there are lots of great ways to enjoy this nutrient-packed veggie (that’s technically a fruit).
 

Here are a few ideas on how to add okra to your dinner:
  • Sliced and sauteed in neutral oil (I use canola) and sprinkled with kosher salt
  • Grilled whole (Use a grill basket or put it on skewers)
  • Sliced up with other summer vegetables and smoked sausage for a quick and easy skillet dinner

 
What are the health benefits of okra?
 
Okra might just help you stay healthy because it provides key nutrients known to protect health and fight off illness, like vitamins A, C, and Zinc. In fact, one cup of uncooked okra provides 14% daily value of vitamin A and a whopping 26% daily value of vitamin C. As for zinc, one uncooked cup of okra will provide 5% daily value.
 
Eating okra with a meal might also help balance the absorption of dietary sugars, helping to regulate blood sugar according to WebMD. The site also includes okra in their section on diabetes due to its many benefits.
 
Fiber has a myriad of health benefits, such as aiding in digestion, helping maintain healthy cholesterol levels, it detoxifies without a “detox,” and it helps you feel full longer after you eat. Great news… okra is loaded with fiber! That same one cup of uncooked okra we’ve been talking about provides 3.2 grams of fiber. That’s 11% of the daily value, in just one cup.
 
 
 
Want to learn about growing okra? Read the full post at www.thecollectedseed.com
 
2020-09-03T19:32:33-05:00September 3rd, 2020|

Working toward your Food Security

The much awaited warm weather is here, and we are busy in the fields. If the experts are right, April could be kind of a scary month with Coronavirus projected to peak about mid-month. Probably the worst danger is that sick workers aren’t allowed to pick, wash or pack vegetables according to food safety protocols. Should a large number of workers become ill, this could hinder U.S. food supply. We are doing our part to practice social distancing and are using our online ordering system now for our members. Pick-up sites are currently open at the OKC Farmers Public Market and at our farm. We are working on finding an Edmond location for a quick opening of a site there. When the local harvest is abundant this year you might think about canning or freezing to have extra food supply on hand should there be another outbreak or power outage. It will be your own emergency supply, and you won’t have to feel bad about it. Our forefathers that lived in rural areas did this every year. I remember helping my grandparents put up corn cut from the cob. They had lived through the Great Depression and never forgot about it; they spoke of it often. Nanette and I have made this a practice for most of our married life. You can put up green beans, peas, tomatoes, peppers of all kinds, sweet corn, okra, etc.. It’s a little work, and you might say it’s cheaper to buy it, but you will know what you have. The next time you see empty store shelves, you won’t get a sinking feeling inside because you will be prepared. One more thing… if you’re worried about electric outages, you could can food in canning jars. If done properly, they will last a long while, and you wouldn’t have to worry about losing a freezer full of food. That is the way it was done before electricity came around. A little extra work to be a little more self-sufficient could be well worth it.

2020-04-01T15:12:28-05:00March 29th, 2020|

Our Response to the Coronavirus

   For some weeks here at Acadian Family Farm, we have been making special emergency plans to continue operating so we can provide good, healthy vegetables to our customers.  We have seed planted and more available for quite some time ahead.  There are lots of plants growing in the greenhouse and a good bit planted out in the field.  We are fighting to keep the farmers’ markets open in the OKC area, because our customers need access to good, fresh, local vegetables to keep their immune systems boosted (some cities in Texas have closed theirs). I am presenting a plan to the farmers markets (that we work with) that if the government wants to limit crowd size, we could also allow that many people through the market at one time.  Also, that we would have every right to be open and operate the same as a grocery store. 
   We have our online ordering system available for the members of our farm community so you can just come in to market, pick up your bag and leave quickly.  In the event that we can’t win the battle to keep the farmers’ markets open, we will try to keep the same drop-off sites available that are on this website.  As long as the roads to the city are open, we plan to deliver.  We have plenty of sweet potatoes in storage to hold us while we are waiting on our cool weather crops that should be ready in early April.

 Farmer Rod

 

2020-03-15T20:18:59-05:00March 15th, 2020|

Sweet Potatoes for Food Storage

Seems to be some interest in food storage right now, so I wanted to mention how sweet potatoes can be stored long term. Sweet potatoes technically are considered a storage root. Their optimal storage temperature is 55 degrees, on the low side and 60 degrees on the high side. Sweet potatoes should never be allowed to fall below 55 degrees because internal damage is accumulative and will show up later. The other temperature side, over 60, will not cause damage, only sprouting. You can keep them at room temperature at 72 with no problem if you like, just watch for sprouting and break them off. Once sweet potatoes are washed their shelf life goes down. For long term storage at our farm, it’s best to leave the dirt on and wash as we ship out. If the need arises for long term food storage, our Vegetable club/CSA members could request that we leave them unwashed. These could last into the summer, depending on temperature and humidity. Our 5 lb. bag size will be convenient for this.

2020-03-08T17:08:35-05:00February 28th, 2020|