Bountiful Blessings Farm Produce

  (Hinckley, Illinois)
Locally Grown - Quality Farm Produce at Affordable Prices

Posts tagged [farm]

German Chamomile

Another herb we are adding this year is German Chamomile. According to Herb Wisdom website:

"Chamomile has been used for centuries in teas as a mild, relaxing sleep aid, treatment for fevers, colds, stomach ailments, and as an anti-inflammatory, to name only a few therapeutic uses. Chamomile may be used internally or externally. Extensive scientific research over the past 20 years has confirmed many of the traditional uses for the plant and established pharmacological mechanisms for the plant's therapeutic activity, including antipeptic, antispasmodic, antipyretic, antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-allergenic activity.

Recent and on-going research has identified chamomiles specific anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, muscle relaxant, antispasmodic, anti-allergenic and sedative properties, validating its long-held reputation. This attention appears to have increased the popularity of the herb and nowadays Chamomile is included as a drug in the pharmacopoeia of 26 countries."

They go on to list the suggested uses of Chamomile...

- As a tea, be used for lumbago, rheumatic problems and rashes.
- As a salve, be used for hemorrhoids and wounds.
- As a vapor, be used to alleviate cold symptoms or asthma.
- Relieve restlessness, teething problems, and colic in children.
- Relieve allergies, much as an antihistamine would.
- Aid in digestion when taken as a tea after meals.
- Relieve morning sickness during pregnancy.
- Speed healing of skin ulcers, wounds, or burns.
- Treat gastritis and ulcerative colitis.
- Reduce inflammation and facilitate bowel movement without acting directly as a purgative.
- Be used as a wash or compress for skin problems and inflammations, including inflammations of mucous tissue.
- Promote general relaxation and relieve stress. Animal studies show that chamomile contains substances that act on the same parts of the brain and nervous system as anti-anxiety drugs. Never stop taking prescription medications, however, without consulting your doctor.
- Control insomnia. Chamomiles mildly sedating and muscle-relaxing effects may help those who suffer from insomnia to fall asleep more easily.
- Treat diverticular disease, irritable bowel problems and various gastrointestinal complaints. Chamomiles reported anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic actions relax the smooth muscles lining the stomach and intestine. The herb may therefore help to relieve nausea, heartburn, and stress-related flatulence. It may also be useful in the treatment of diverticular disorders and inflammatory bowel conditions such as Crohn's disease.
- Soothe skin rashes (including eczema), minor burns and sunburn. - Used as a lotion or added in oil form to a cool bath, chamomile may ease the itching of eczema and other rashes and reduces skin inflammation. It may also speed healing and prevent bacterial infection.
- Treat eye inflammation and infection. Cooled chamomile tea can be used in a compress to help soothe tired, irritated eyes and it may even help treat conjunctivitis.
- Heal mouth sores and prevent gum disease. A chamomile mouthwash may help soothe mouth inflammations and keep gums healthy.
- Reduce menstrual cramps. Chamomiles believed ability to relax the smooth muscles of the uterus helps ease the discomfort of menstrual cramping.

We are very excited about expanding our selection of herbs. Kim and I have tried the Chamomile tea and we both enjoy it's calming results. We can't wait until we can harvest some!!
 
 

Fennel????

Fennel? What is fennel? Do you cook with fennel? Fennel is crispy and slightly sweet, adding a refreshing contribution to the ever popular Mediterranean cuisine. Most often associated with Italian cooking, be sure to add this to your selection of fresh vegetables this summer.

Fennel is composed of a white or pale green. closely intertwined stalks are extend from the bulb. The stalks are topped with bristly green leaves, The plant produces flowers and fennel seeds near the cluster of leaves. The bulb, stalk, leaves and seeds are all edible. Fennel belongs to the Umbellifereae family and is closely related to parsley, carrots, dill and coriander. 

Fennel's aromatic taste is unique, strikingly similar of licorice and anise, so much so that fennel is often mistakenly referred to as anise in the marketplace. Fennel's texture is similar to that of celery, having a crunchy and concave texture.

The scientific name for fennel is Foeniculum vulgare.

Fennel is available at the Bountiful Blessings Farm during the summer months. 

At Bountiful Blessings Farm we add fennel to our salads, roast beef, stews and soup. There are many other ways to use fennel. Here is a recipe from our farm cookbook (soon to be available).

Roasted Pork Tenderloin

2 medium bulbs fennel, cut into sixths
2 medium red onions, cut into sixths
3 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons whole fennel seeds
2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
1 whole pork tenderloin (1 to 1 1/4 pounds)
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

Adjust rack to middle position and place an empty 13- by 9-inch baking dish in the middle. Preheat the oven to 425°F.

In a large bowl, toss fennel, onions, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste. When the oven is hot, remove the baking dish, add the vegetables, and return to oven. Roast, stirring occasionally, until starting to tenderize, about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, drizzle 2 teaspoons of olive oil over pork and season with salt and pepper. Rub fennel seeds and thyme leaves on exterior. When vegetables are ready, remove baking dish from oven, and push the vegetables to the sides of the dish with a spatula or wooden spoon. Place the pork in the center and return to oven. Roast until the thickest part of the pork registers 145°F on an instant-read thermometer. Remove from oven and allow to rest for 10 minutes.

While the pork is resting, whisk together remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar. Slice the pork into thick rounds, and plate along with the roasted fennel and onion. Drizzle the olive oil and vinegar over the top. Serve immediately.

We hope you enjoy this recipe!! 

Blessings!
 
 

Are You a 4-H Fan?

Where you in 4-H? Are your children in 4-H? I have always cherished my membership in the 4-H club. I belonged to the Hinckley Harvesters back in the day - as they say. I was thinking about this the other day and realized many of the local farmers that I would consider successful, were members of the 4-H club. I guess there must be something to be said about 4-H and its leaders. I recall several leaders while I was a member. Bob Suddeth and Jerry Harvell were very involved as I was growing up in Hinckley.

Being in 4-H taught me so much. One of the things I learned that is very important for me today as a farmer is record keeping. Even though I really do not like doing paperwork, I know that keeping good records is very essential to my job as a farmer. In the 4-H I learned that having accurate records made the job much easier next year. Back then I had a pretty good memory, but now, it is important for me to write everything down or I forget. I guess I am getting older.

4-H also help me learn how to interact with other people, not only other members, but also members of our community. With events like June Milk Days, each member was asked to volunteer in the community to promote milk and dairy products. This gave us an opportunity to directly interact with each other and the community. It was fun learning. Looking at the 4-H website, they site the following statistics about youth involved in the 4-H clubs . . . . . . .

The Positive Development of Youth: Comprehensive Findings from the 4-H Study of Positive Youth Development is the first-ever research project of its kind. The decade-long study, completed by a team of researchers at the Institute for Applied Research in Youth Development at Tufts University, Medford, MA, is influencing research and practice around the world.

The report shows that 4-H youth excel beyond their peers. 4-H'ers are about:

- Four times more likely to make contributions to their communities (Grades 7-12);
- Two times more likely to be civically active (Grades 8-12);
- Two times more likely to make healthier choices (Grade 7);
- Two times more likely to participate in Science, Engineering and - Computer Technology programs during out-of-school time (Grades 10 – 12); and
- 4-H girls are two times more likely (Grade 10) and nearly three times more likely (Grade 12) to take part in science programs compared to girls in other out-of-school time activities.

I would like to encourage parents to talk with their children about joining the 4-H. It was a lot of fun for me and I believe I learned a lot by being a member. Here is our local office information:

DeKalb
1350 West Prairie Drive
Sycamore, IL 60178
(815) 758-8194

Give them a call today!

 
 

Grandpa Burton

Many conversations come up around the little picnic table we have at the farm stand here at the farm. One of the topics that comes up over and over is about my grandpa. Most of the long-life Hinckleyites either knew my grandpa, Burton Wielert or have heard of him. 

Needless to say, Grandpa was a character. He always had a story or a joke to tell and he most generally wore bib overalls. Maybe that's where I get it from! Grandpa loved his horses and spent a lot of time in the barn working with them. He raised Percheron draft horses. If I recall, at one time he had about 20 of them here at the farm. With the horses, there was also the waste - you know - the manure. This is one of the reasons our soil is so rich here at Bountiful Blessings Farm as we continue to make soil health a priority. 

As I posted in a recent blog "Why do I Farm?", I love farming the ground my ancestors farmed years ago. This brings me thoughts of watching and learning from Grandpa Burton. There isn't to many days that go by without me thinking of one of his sayings or how he did something. I loved his laugh and his stories. Farming generates many stories and I hope as I continue to farm, the stories I make grow in the hearts of my grandchildren, to be past along to yet another generation. How much fun is that!!!

We are so glad to share our stories with our family, friends and neighbors that stop at the farm stand. Stop by this season and look us up. We are so happy to share with you and so happy you stop by to see us. Have a blessed day!

 
 

Why Do I Farm???

Early this morning as I sat at my desk in the barn office, a question popped into my head, 'Why do I farm?' I thought about it for a while and here is what I came up with:

- I absolutely love what I do.
- I cannot see myself doing anything different.
- It gives me an opportunity to live my faith.
- I have a deeper connection to God and His creation. 
- The opportunity to live in the country on our family's farm
- To till the soil that my ancestors worked many years ago.
- To be able to work with members of my family everyday
- To continue the family tradition of farming the history of small farms
- Self Management = Independence = Freedom
- My love of the outdoors and hard work outside
- To serve my fellow man by providing safe, local-grown, fresh vegetables
- The satisfaction of hearing someone say, "these are delicious".
- Being able to farm with antique Farmall tractors
- The opportunity to be able to do many different tasks rolled into one like - - carpenter, plumber, electrician, surveyor, roofer, painter, marketing, customer relations, HR, mechanic, grower, picker, sales, cook, manager, florist, and much, much more
 - AND THE LIST GOES ON AND ON..........

All of us at Bountiful Blessings Farm Produce love what we do and we especially enjoy serving each of you; our family, neighbors and friends. Thank you for being one of the reasons we do what we do!!!!
 
 

Winter Reading List for Foodies

One of the things that I enjoy very much is reading. Whether it is a documentary, a mystery novel or a cookbook, I love to read it. Usually you will find a few different books or magazines on my night stand or on the coffee table by my chair, but lately there has been a subject matter other than the normal, ... cooking with vegetables, magazines, and articles have made their way into my reading routine. With Spring coming just around the corner I put together for you that might perk your interest. Here are a few for those of you who are interested in vegetables, cooking, and eating healthy.


- Melissa’s Everyday Cooking With Organic Produce: A Guide to Easy-to-Make Dishes With Fresh Organic Fruits and Vegetables, by Cathy Thomas

- Eating Local: The Cookbook Inspired by America’s Farmers by Sur La Table and Janet Fletcher

- Fast, Fresh and Green: More Than 90 Delicious Recipes for Veggie Lovers, by Susie Middleton

- Farmers Market Desserts by Jennie Schacht

- The Big Summer Cookbook: 300 Fresh, Flavorful Recipes for Those Lazy, Hazy Days by Jeff Cox

- The Farmer's Market Cookbook: Seasonal Dishes Made from Nature's Freshest Ingredients by Richard Ruben

- The Farmer's Kitchen: The Ultimate Guide to Enjoying Your CSA and Farmers' Market Foods

These are just a few of the many ideas out there on how to cook with vegetables. Kim and I will be placing some of our favorite recipes on cards for you to pick up at the stand or in our CSA boxes. We hope this will help you enjoy our fresh veggies even more!
 
 

Endive Endeavor

It's actually pretty warm here in Illinois today. We just hit 40 degrees, however it is windy and cloudy. I just spoke to a very good friend of mine in Georgia and he told me that he is planting in his greenhouse today! I guess it won't be too long before we will be planting seeds in our greenhouse. This year we are adding a several new vegetables to our available selection at the Bountiful Blessings Farm. One of those veggies is Endive. I am trying to learn as much as I can about growing endive. One website said it was the most difficult vegetable to grow. This what I found at Cornell University's website:

Like lettuce and other cool-season greens, endive needs short days and cool temperatures.

Direct seed ¼-inch deep in rows 18 inches apart 2 to 4 weeks before average last frost. Make succession plantings for continuous harvest. Thin to 8 to 12 inches.

For extra-early crops, start seed inside 6 to 8 weeks before last frost. Transplant into garden about 2 weeks before last frost.

To prevent plants from going to seed (bolting), keep them well-watered and shaded when temperatures are above 75 F. Mulch to retain moisture and suppress weeds.

For fall harvests, direct seed in garden about 2 to 3 months before expected fall frost. Light frost enhances flavor.

Blanch heading varieties for a milder flavor. A week or so before harvest, pull outer leaves over head and tie. Make sure leaves are dry to avoid rot. Other blanching alternatives include placing a flower pot over the plant, or covering with a cardboard disk or plastic container. Self-blanching varieties are available. Close plant spacing (about 8 inches) encourages self-blanching.

I am excited about trying something new and I am anxious to taste the fresh endive from our fields. 

 
 

2016 Planning

This time of year is always a lot of fun; going through the new seed catalogs; planning the fields; preparing the machinery, etc. At the Bountiful Blessings Farm we are experiencing a fairly mild winter. We've received ample moisture so far in January in the form of rain, however, very little snow. There is little frost in the ground which could mean heavy weed pressure during the growing season. We are hoping for some colder weather so we get some frost in the ground which tends to kill some of the weed seeds. 

Jeff is working on seed orders and field plotting. At BBF, we work diligently to rotate our crops to lower disease issues. We are looking forward to an exciting year with cut flowers again this year. We will have herbs as well.

We are also still accepting CSA subscriptions for the season. 

What a great time of the year as we look ahead, learning from what we did in the last few seasons. Keep watching as we grow into the New Year!

God Bless! 

 
 

Big Plans for 2015

Every year around this time, you can find me beneath a pile of seed catalogs, marketing books, literature, and other gardening ephemera. Even though we start our planning process during the regular season and into December; January and February are steeped in preparation and strategic planning for the upcoming season. Ninety percent of our seed order has placed. Most of our spring supplies have been ordered. Our value add-on products have been researched and selected. We are basically ready for the weather to change and the calendar to march closer to the first planting date.

Kim and I are very excited about the upcoming season. My dad is drawn up plans for an expansion of the home farm stand. It will more than double our retail square footage. This will allow us to offer our customers more variety. We have plenty of barn wood from the old barn to repurpose as we make this addition. It will look so cool! Dad has it designed to look like a barn, complete with cupola. Like I said, we are very excited and our seed order represents this excitement in the new vegetables we will be growing. One is going to be Artisan Tomatoes. Here is a description taken from the Johnny’s Select Seed Catalog:

"A unique new kind of tomato, all the Artisans are small in size and striped. Some are an elongated cherry tomato shape, dubbed the julienne tomato. These have Tiger in the name (except Blush). The Tiger tomatoes can be cut crosswise into rounds or lengthwise into roughly oval shapes. The others are a traditional cherry tomato shape with stripes, known as the Bumble Bees. Over a decade in the making, independent breeders at Artisan Seeds used traditional breeding techniques to develop these tomatoes. They are some of the most attractive we have ever seen all by themselves; even better when mixed. And, the best part is, they taste as good as they look."

 

We believe that adding some variety to our available vegetables will give our customers an opportunity to expand their cooking and eating experience. With all of the cooking shows on the TV, viewers are able to get all kinds of new ideas for using fresh vegetables in their diet. Again, our excitement is not containable! Keep watching here for more news about our daily experiences at the Bountiful Blessings Farm in Hinckley, IL. 

 
 

Honored to be God's Steward

Jeff has been asked to be a guest on KFUO radio station this coming Monday, February 24th at 11:00am. He will be joined by Pastor Jeff Hemmer and radio host Andrew B Bates on Faith n Family discussing care for creation as part of KFUO's First Article theme for the week. If you are interested in hearing the program, you can live stream at http://www.kfuoam.org/

"To God be the glory! What an honor; I am humbled!!" - Jeff

So in preparation for the radio program, I thought I would blog a bit about how we take care of God's Creation at Bountiful Blessings Farm.

One of the most important things we try to do at the farm is take care of the soil. My grandpa worked very diligently to make sure the soil was healthy, Today, we strive very hard to maintain the soil and contribute to it's health. Adding organic content, keeping the soil fertilized, watching the pH levels and soil tillage are some of our top priorities. These measures help to insure proper stewardship of God's real estate.

Another area of concern is chemical use. At Bountiful Blessings farm we admit we are not organic. However, we do not use harsh chemicals that might endanger wildlife, bees or benificial life. We also take care in putting the well-being of ourselves and customers first by using methods that are safe and effective. We do not spray on a regimen and we incorporate sustainable practices and integrated pest management.  When we spray, we start with organic compounds. We don’t use anything stronger than a one-day post harvest interval. We strive to be good stewards of the many gifts and blessings God bestows upon us which include our education and knowledge of good agricultural practices.

We work very hard to insure the safest practices are implemented in our production of delicious, locally grown vegetables.

 
 

Spring Preparations 2014

We have been working diligently at the Bountiful Blessings Farm getting everything ready for another season. Kim and I have gone through the seed catalogs and selected the varieties we will be growing this year. In my last post I listed the peppers we will be featuring this year. We have received numerous requests to expand our pepper variety so we listened and did just that. This week I have been working on seed planting schedules, tractors and our wagons. The weather here has been very cold with lots of snow. We are all getting a bit tired of it! 

Last weekend we were to attend the DeKalb Winter Farmer's market, but ut was canceled due the weather. We will be present at the one scheduled in January. 

Please be sure to look at our CSA subscriptions on our website if you are interested in participating this year. We have held our prices despite the increase in labor and fuel expenses. Please consider joining us.

 
 

Pepper Preparation

Here is a list of some of the speciality and heirloom peppers we will be growing this year:

 

 

     Sport Peppers

     Giant Aconcagua Sweet Pepper

     Bhut Jolokia (Ghost) Pepper

     Naga Viper Pepper

     Trinidad Scorpion (Butch T Strain)    Hot Pepper

     Key Largo Cubanelle

     Tiburon – Poblano

     Large Red Cherry Hot

     Cayenne – Large Thick

     Cayenne – Long Slim

     Jalapeno – Telica F1

     Jalapeno – Suribachi F1

     Habanero

     Chocolate Habanero

     Ghost Pepper Bhut Jolokia

     Belcanto

     Oranos

     Xanthi

 

Heirloom Peppers

     Chervena Chushka Pepper

     Tequila Sunrise Pepper

     Wenk's Yellow Hots Pepper

     Jimmy Nardello's Pepper

     Hinkelhatz Pepper

     Fish Pepper

     Ancho Gigantea Pepper

 
 

It's Pumpkin Season at Bountiful Blessings Farm!

We have started picking pumpkins and gourds at the Bountiful Blessings Farm. Stop out and check out our selection!!!

 


 
 

Rain Rain Rain!!!!

Lots of rain our way the past two or three days.

 More storms tonight...

 

 
 

Update - - Tomatoes Coming Soon!!

 

 

 Tomatoes in the high tunnel...

 Tomatoes in the field....

 

 

 Another view of the field...

 
 

Planting Potatoes

 

Planting potatoes today! Very busy time of the year.

 
 

Yet More Peppers Grown at the Bountiful Blessings Farm

 

 Here are some more of the peppers we grow at the farm

 

Cayenne – Long Thin Pepper

The cayenne pepper—also known as the Guinea spice, cow-horn pepper, aleva, bird pepper, or, especially in its powdered form, red pepper—is a red, hot chili pepper used to flavor dishes and for medicinal purposes. Named for the city of Cayenne in French Guiana, it is a cultivar of Capsicum annuum related to bell peppers, jalapeños, and others. The Capsicum genus is in the nightshade family (Solanaceae).

The fruits are generally dried and ground, or pulped and baked into cakes, which are then ground and sifted to make the powdered spice of the same name.

Cayenne is used in cooking spicy dishes, as a powder or in its whole form (such as in Korean, Sichuan and other Asian cuisine), or in a thin, vinegar-based sauce. It is generally rated at 30,000 to 50,000 Scoville units. It is also used as an herbal supplement, and was mentioned by Nicholas Culpeper in his 17th century book Complete Herbal.

 

Jalapeños – Mucho Nacho

Most people think of the jalapeño as being very hot, but it actually varies from mild to hot depending on how it was grown and how it was prepared. The heat is concentrated in the seeds and the veins, so if you want it on the milder end of its scale, remove those parts.

Jalapeños are sold canned, sliced, and pickled. Canned jalapeños may be milder than fresh because they are usually peeled and the seeds removed. Pickled jalapeños are always hot.

A chipotle (pronounced: chi poat lay) is a jalapeño that has been smoked. The jalapeño rates between 2,500 and 8,000 Scoville units on the heat index.

Habanero Pepper

The habanero's heat, its fruity, citrus-like flavor, and its floral aroma have made it a popular ingredient in hot sauces and spicy foods. Habaneros are sometimes placed in tequila or mezcal bottles, particularly in Mexico, for a period ranging from several days to several weeks, to make a spiced version of the drink. Most habaneros rate 200,000 to 300,000 Scoville heat units. Yee ha!! That's hot!! HANDLE WITH CARE!!!!!

 

 
 

More Peppers at Bountiful Blessings Farm

 More Peppers We Grow at the Bountiful Blessings Farm

 

Wenk’s Yellow Pepper

The Wenk’s Yellow hot pepper is originally the Albuquerque’s South Valley, where it is incorporated into the local cuisine.  In terms of spice, this variety produces medium to hot peppers with a full flavor of citrus.  Because these waxy yellow fruits are very fleshy, they are often used for pickling.

Key Largo Cubanelle Pepper

Key Largo Cubanelle peppers are similar to Anaheim peppers but slightly less flavorful. They are considered a sweet pepper. Cubanelles can be stuffed or used in salads and casseroles. Also good on pizzas or subs. These thin-walled, long, tapered peppers have more flavor and a lower water content than bell peppers and are the perfect pepper for roasting and frying.

Cubanelle peppers are long and tapered, and either red or pale green or yellow. They can be substituted in recipes calling for Anaheim peppers. The Cubanelle should be firm, smooth and glossy.

Cayenne – Long Thin Pepper

The cayenne pepper—also known as the Guinea spice, cow-horn pepper, aleva, bird pepper, or, especially in its powdered form, red pepper—is a red, hot chili pepper used to flavor dishes and for medicinal purposes. Named for the city of Cayenne in French Guiana, it is a cultivar of Capsicum annuum related to bell peppers, jalapeños, and others. The Capsicum genus is in the nightshade family (Solanaceae).

The fruits are generally dried and ground, or pulped and baked into cakes, which are then ground and sifted to make the powdered spice of the same name.

Cayenne is used in cooking spicy dishes, as a powder or in its whole form (such as in Korean, Sichuan and other Asian cuisine), or in a thin, vinegar-based sauce. It is generally rated at 30,000 to 50,000 Scoville units. It is also used as an herbal supplement, and was mentioned by Nicholas Culpeper in his 17th century book Complete Herbal.

Ghost Pepper

The Bhut Jolokia — also known as Ghost Pepper has been around for many centuries and it is believed to have originated in Assam, India. The word Bhut, given from the Bhutias people, means "ghost" and was probably given the name because of the way the heat sneaks up on the one who eats it.

It was only introduced to the western world in 2000. In that same year, a report was published stating it's level of heat as almost double that of a Red Savina Habanero which was believed to be the world's hottest pepper.

In 2007 The Ghost Pepper was certified as the hottest Chili Pepper on the planet in The Guinness Book of World Records. Over 1,000,000 on the Scoville Scale.

 

 
 

New Wood Stove in Greenhouse

 We installed a wood stove in our seedling house today. Holding 70 degrees at this point. More testing to come. I will keep you posted on how it works. This is something new for us. The house measures 22X24.

 
 

Peppers at the Bountiful Blessings Farm

 These are a few of the peppers we are growing at the Bountiful Blessings Farm. Seeding under way!! It won't be long!!

Fish Pepper

 

This pepper is an African-American heirloom that predates the 1870s; the Fish Pepper is bright in color and crunchy, with a hot and bold flavor.  In the late 1800s, the Fish Pepper was widely grown in the Philadelphia and Baltimore area. Fish Pepper plants have beautiful green and white variegated foliage with pendant fruits that are 2-3 inches long.  When the fruits ripen, they change in color from cream with green stripes to orange with brown stripes, and then eventually to an all red eating pepper. Traditionally, the fish pepper was used in oyster and crab houses around the Chesapeake Bay. Rated as 3 on a heat scale of 1-5, the Fish Pepper is also perfect for mild-medium salsas.

 

Hinkelhatz Hot Pepper

 

Named by its Pennsylvania Dutch growers, the ‘Hinkelhatz’ is a rare heirloom pepper which translates to “chicken heart,” a description of its size and shape. The variety is one of the oldest preserved by this group of Mennonites, cultivated for well over 150 years.  It was illustrated in Charles L’Ecluse’s 1611 Curae Posteriores, though without a mentioned origin (presumed to be Mexico).  The peppers are usually red or yellow, though a very rare orange variant exists preserved among a small group of Mennonite farmers in Maxatawy, Pennsylvania and is slightly more top-like in shape.  Its flavor is described as “stocky” and it is considered to be quite hot.  The Hinkelhatz is traditionally used exclusively for pickling.  The Pennsylvania Dutch cooked and pureed it to make a pepper vinegar, a condiment often sprinkled on sauerkraut.  A recipe appears in 1848 in Die Geschickte Hausfrau. 

 

Jimmy Nardello’s Sweet Italian Frying Pepper

 

This variety of pepper was originally from Basilicata, a southern region of Italy.  It takes its name from seed saver Jimmy Nardello, who brought the seeds from Italy while immigrating to Connecticut in 1887. The Jimmy Nardello’s pepper is sweet and light when eaten raw.  It is considered one of the very best frying peppers as its fruity raw flavor becomes perfectly creamy and soft when fried.

 

 
 
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