The bittersweet final harvest. The wind is blowing, the sun is shining, the temperature hot although according to all predictions tomorrow at this time it will be 40 degrees cooler. Golly this year has been a rough ride. July 13th, mid summer, we awoke to our barn in flames. At that moment I said “ I can not do this”. I had no idea where I could gather the energy to recover from such loss Now, 4 months later, here I am looking back on a season that proved to me many, many things. First and beyond a doubt the most important is the importance of community. There are no words that can duly express my gratitude to each and every one of you for the support you offered. It came in many forms: homemade soup and bread, legal advice, tools, plants, baskets, emotional support and the most basic and necessary cold, hard, cash. There is absolutely no way we could have done it without you.
I hope you share in our pride at this moment of completion. I hope you are as proud as I am of the company you keep. The market stand is the heart of the hill and hollow community and as I watch each of you interact week after week and come together over our basic human needs of nourishment, I am so proud that you can find that sustenance with us and each other in those morning hours each Saturday.
Next, I learned we are resilient. we can actually handle just about anything that life sends our way. It isn’t always easy. There were many a moment over the past months when I wanted to throw in the towel, when I lost faith in humankind (thanks for that Kentucky Farm Bureau!). Then would soon come the moment of reflection. The thoughtful email arriving, the package of old photos in the mail from a long lost friend. Faith restored. Phew.
I celebrated a half century of this great life in September. It all became abundantly clear. As I pondered this homespun often crazy life of mine I realized I wouldn’t change a thing. I am blessed. I have an amazing family and a community so dear that I could cry thinking of you all. I am so lucky to be the steward of these amazing hills and hollows and to have the honor to feed you and your families.
I am still in a legal battle with my insurance company. If and when we receive a settlement remains anyone’s guess. Lately, it doesn’t hurt so much because all that truly matters is well within my reach.
Our nation is in a great struggle right now. I hope the lessons I have learned in the past months can give me the strength and courage to proceed with hope into the unknown future.
My deepest gratitude to each of you for all that you offer me and my family. Your hugs, your smiles, your recipes, your unending enthusiasm for fresh food makes my day….every single one of them. I will miss you and am already looking forward to Spring.
Gingery Sauteed Tat-Soi with Tofu Steaks
I rarely feature recipes with tofu, but this sounded so good, I also figure a nice fish would offer the same taste!
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon rice vinegar
2 teaspoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons lime juice
2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
6 ounces extra firm tofu, cut into “steaks”
1 tablespoon sesame oil, divided
2 bunches of tat-soi
1-2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds
In a small bowl whisk all ingredients from soy sauce through cayenne pepper.
In a large skillet over medium high heat, add 2 teaspoons sesame oil. Add tofu steaks; cook for 5-7 minutes per side, or until golden brown. Remove from skillet. Add remaining 1 teaspoon sesame oil to skillet; add tat soi; once wilted, add sauce. Reduce heat to medium-low, and cook just until sauce slightly thickens.
Divide greens on plates. Top with half of the tofu. Drizzle with remaining sauce, and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve immediately.
fall week 7 in your basket:
misato rose radish