January 8, 2013                                                                                                                       check us out on facebook

Green Croft Gardens News

What’s happening on the farm?

This is the season to take it easy, so now we have some time to read, ride the horses, walk the dogs, visit with friends, catch up on some house renovation projects and make plans for next growing season. Wolf got his seed orders ready to be send off and I just went to a Seed Swap meeting planning the 19th annual Shuswap Seed Savers Seed Swap. This is also the time to start organizing festivals in Grindrod and on the Farm. We still have lots of root vegetables and squash in storage that we have to wash and pack. We have been lucky with the mild weather so far and hope to wash most of our carrots in the next few weeks.

The Farm Animals

January and February are quiet month for our livestock. We cleaned all the barns again piling up a nice compost heap and we even got trenches dug behind the barn and filled in drain rock so our barn stays dryer.  Lily our Jersey/Holstein heifer loves cull onions, carrot scraps and squash and so do her goat friends. We clean around the feed trough a few times a week realizing that cows make a lot more manure. The sheep live in two groups now, five ewes out in the pasture with the black ram and five in the barn with the young ram(he still has to be named). The goats Ivy and Star are getting quite round and are both dried off(not milking). Their due date is around March 11 and they love to cuddle up to Lily at night. We did get the roosters, some old hens and three ducks butchered before Christmas and the young hens and some older ones are starting to lay eggs in many colours again. The pigs are now rototilling our green house which we opened up for them. They really enjoy this dry space and are quite tame now coming over to visit and get scratches. We are still cooking up cull potatoes for them and they love it. 

Winter Market Dates

         2.30 pm - 6 pm at the Coldstream Woman Institute Hall across        

         from the elementary school. 

         11am - 4 pm at the Enderby Seniors Citizen Complex.

         9 am - 1 pm, indoors at the Parkinson Rec. Center, 

Products Available for January and February...

Winter Storage Crops: 

rainbow carrots, orange carrots, red cabbage, green cabbage, red and yellow onions, yellow, red and blue potatoes, sunchokes, parsnips, rutabaga, black radish,  celeriac (root celery), red, candy and golden beets, all kinds of squash.

Special Sale for January !!!   

25 lbs of Squash mix and match only $20!

25 lb Juice Carrots only $20!


The Soup Blueprint
1. Heat your fat (oil or butter or lard) in a large soup pot
2. Sauté any combination of garlic and onions (add more of whichever you like)
3. Add pinches of salt and pepper with each addition of ingredients in order to build your flavor
4. Add any combination of vegetables and continue sautéing
5. Add your dried herbs and spices and continue sautéing
6. Add your stock, at least enough to let the vegetables swim freely
7. Bring to a boil
8. If you want any pastas or grains, add them now (be very generous with your stock if using these)
9. Reduce to a simmer and cook until everything’s soft and happy – usually about 30 minutes
10. Add fresh herbs during the last ten minutes of cooking
11. Blend if you want a smooth soup and/or add cream if you want
12. Taste and season with more salt and pepper
13. Taste again!
14. If you wanted meat in there somewhere, depending on if it’s cooked or raw, add it in either step two (to brown beef), eight (to cook chicken), or ten (for cooked anything)

Roasted Root Vegetable Stew

1 large rutabaga
2 large sieglinde potatoes
1 large or several small parsnips
1 large carrot
1 small celeriac root
1 medium onion
1 can (14 oz) of chick peas, drained
1 T. olive oil
Salt & freshly ground black pepper
1 t. dried marjoram or thyme
1 t. freshly finely chopped rosemary (optional)
3-4 C. vegetable broth

Scrub and trim ends and any bad spots off of all the root vegetables. You may wish to peel some or all of the root vegetables especially the celeriac and rutabaga.

Preheat your oven to 450 F.  

To prep the vegetables for roasting, cut everything, including the onion, into 1 inch cubes.  

Place on a foil-lined cookie sheet or in a roasting pan.  

Add the chick peas to the chopped vegetables. 

Drizzle with oil and toss, season the vegetables with a generous pinch each of salt and pepper and the teaspoon of herb.  Toss again and spread into a single layer. 

Roast vegetables in the oven for 30-40 minutes or until they are browning at the edges, but are still fairly juicy.  

Just before the vegetables are ready, bring 3 cups of vegetable broth to a boil in a large saucepan.  When vegetables are done roasting, carefully add to the hot broth.  

If desired, add the additional cup of broth.  Let soup simmer on medium heat for 10 minutes.  Using the back of your stirring spoon, press some of the vegetables up against the side of the saucepan until they are smashed to help thicken the soup.  Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. 

Serve piping hot with homemade bread. 

(serves 4)

Vegetable Profile - Rutabaga

Larger than the turnip and with a rough skin that is partly tan and partly purple, the rutabaga's unpolished appearance belies its fine texture and distinctive, sweet tasting flesh.

When roast or mashed, rutabaga makes a simple and tasty side dish. It can also be used to add interest to stews or in a variety of twists on mashed potato.

The rutabaga is thought to have originated in central Europe and has a relatively short culinary history compared with many vegetables. It was known in France and England in the seventeenth century and became an important European crop by the eighteenth century. During the nineteenth century it reached the USA and then Canada.To this day it is a much more popular food in North and East Europe than any other region.

A member of the Cruciferae family, Brassica napus is a hardy plant that is frost-tolerant and thrives in moist soil.

Rutabaga has a good mineral content including calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and manganese. It is low in saturated fat and relatively high in sugars. It also provides some fiber and vitamins A and C.

Rutabaga will keep well in the fridge for a couple of weeks or more.

Peel before use. As the skin is quite thick and uneven you may find it easier to quarter the swede and cut off the skin with a knife, rather than using a peeler.

Roasting will concentrate the rutabaga's flavor, whereas boiling will dilute it. Cut swede into chunks or cubes, according to preference, and cook until tender. Baking at 400°F will take around 30 to 45 minutes, boiling will take 10 to 20 minutes.

Rutabaga can also be used raw; try it finely grated in a salad.

In Scotland rutabaga are known as neeps and are served mashed alongside haggis as part of the traditional supper on Burns Night.

Home made Wool Crafts!

Felting Workshops @ the Farm

We offer great workshops stating February. Come and join in on

Sunday, Feb 3 and Feb 10, 11 am - 4 pm and 

Saturday, Feb 9, 11 am - 4 pm

These workshops, will teach you how to make a molded piece like slippers, tea cozy, a bowl or other felted project of your choice.

Cost is $ 50 per person, this includes wool and all materials to make your felt piece and lunch.

Please sign up by email greencroftgardens@mybcdc.ca  or call 250 838-6581

Check out and support these events

GE-free Zone Delegation to NORD

Mark your calendar:

On January 16 BeeSAFE will appear as a delegation to the R.D.N.O., to suggest that the RDNO be declared a GE-free Zone. Although this would likely not be given the force of law, it would indicate to farmers a direction envisaged and preferred by the R.D.

Board Room - 9848 Aberdeen Rd (& Hwy 6), Coldstream

Wednesday, Jan 16 - 4:00pm

                The People’s Summit on Enbridge Northern Gateway Project

Saturday, January 26, 2013
7:00pm until 9:00pm

First United Church Hall, Corner of Bernard and Richter Avenue, Kelowna, BC

The People’s Summit on Enbridge Northern Gateway Project in Kelowna, BC, will host an inspiring array of keynote speakers and a question and answer session on Saturday, January 26. 

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip ,Elizabeth May, Damien Gillis and Rob Fleming will be the keynote speakers.

This will be followed on Sunday January 27 with workshops and skills training that will provide tools and strategies for community resistance and solidarity. 

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