The Depot Farm

  (Corfu, New York)
Growing good food, Naturally!
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Garlic Broccoli

 This makes a great side dish or main meal!

1 lb broccoli florets

1 medium onion - coarsely chopped

4-5 cloves garlic - crushed

1 tablespoon soy sauce

dried basil

sesame seeds

Steam the broccoli and onion about 5 minutes. Add to pan with garlic and soy sauce. Sprinkle with sesame seeds; shake liberal amount of basil over ingredients and mix well to coat. Cook on high heat (stir fry) about 3 minutes and serve.


Winter Update

  Happy Holidays All!

  While we spent the last few weeks with friends and family and enjoying their company (and a little down time for us!), time marches on and we need to get a jump on the new year. Most of the seeds and supplies are on order; our bookwork updated and general repairs and upgrades to the equipment are finished. We've added some new seeds to our veggie inventory in the form of new varieties of peppers, tomatoes, beans and greens. We will keep our old favorites and experiment with these to see how they perform. Taste is everything; so that's our #1 priority. Vigor, disease resistance and production follow in our choices and, after input from our members, we'll decide if we will add them to our regular fare. As always, we have some "new" unusual heirloom varieties to test and evaluate.

  We have made some exciting changes in our CSA this year, and should be posting the details and pricing in our store in 2-3 weeks. We are always optimistic and thankful to all our members for their support and commitment throughout the year. We look forward to renewing old friendships and making new ones' and wish you all the best in the new year!



Here's a simple recipe for vegan chili; cook it in a slow cooker 6-8 hrs on low for the best flavor! Simply mix the following ingredients together and cook:

1 can black beans, drained

1 can kidney or great northern beans, drained

1 can crushed tomatoes with the liquid

1/2 cup each:

   chopped red peppers

   diced onion

   chopped celery

   canned corn

1 cup vegetable stock

Season with oregano, basil, cumin, garlic and chili powder to taste. (you can add 2 vegan paddies cooked and crumbled to the chili mixture if you want the look and texture of a ground beef chili). Enjoy!





















Composting in Place

  With a large area cultivated and planted every year, producing enough compost in a pile is impossible. We use mulch to conserve water and control weeds wherever possible. By adding leaves, grass clippings, and plant debris throughout the year (spread over the existing mulch layer), we have a continuous supply of compost on the fields for the worms and bacteria to happily digest and add enrichment to the soil. Manure and wood chips don't go on until the growing season is over to allow it to break down over the winter months. Cover crops of oats, field peas and buckwheat are added to the "mulch" as crops are harvested and the area rested. These all die with the frost and are left in place to breakdown on their own. In spring, we till or plow what we have to for the seed beds, or simply place transplants directed into the soil by pulling the mulch back a little. No Tilling necessary! The ground is loose and friable without any cultivation.

  This method has been used in both bed plantings, row planting and large areas of open plantings. Insect pests haven't been a problem overwintering in the mulch. Working at adding these components throughout the year makes the task a little less daunting than trying to do it all at once. This also frees up more time to dedicate to planting and other chores. The real payoff comes when you harvest a great crop! Without good soil structure and fertility, all your hard work ends up with poor yields or worse: no yield. Feed the soil and the soil will feed you.


Say It Ain't So!

  Yet another growing season is coming to an end. This week marks the last pickup of our CSA. Frost came Saturday night and only the hardy survived. While the cold tolerant crops continue to grow; most of the beds are ready to be put to rest for the winter. Adding leaf mold, along with manure and garden debris to the cover crops, we let the mix breakdown over the winter to be turned under in spring; meanwhile it is protecting the soil from the wind, rain and snow of winter.

  While we still are harvesting fresh lettuce, spinach, kale and swiss chard; we will miss the other crops like peppers, cucumbers and tomatoes. Our personal supply of carrots, beets and other root crops will remain in ground until we want to use them; covering them in straw once the weather grows permanently cold to protect them from freezing and making it easy to harvest in frost-free soil.

  As in nature; we will take a little time to rest, replenish, and restore ourselves before starting the cycle all over again. Thanks!..........Is that a seed catalog in the mail box???


Spinach and Kale

  This recipe is a good side dish or stand alone meal!

Cook 1/2 chopped onion, 1 medium pepper (sliced thinly), and halved green olives in veggie broth until tender; add a handful of fresh spinach leaves and a handful of chopped kale to the pan and cook until greens have wilted. Season with a little cumin and oregano, toss well and serve warm. Enjoy!


Fall Update

  Time for the fall update around our farm!

  Tomatoes and peppers were excellent this year. Another week or two and they will be done. Our fall kale, lettuces and spinach is coming in; along with the carrots and beets. The cool weather has kept the flavor of the greens mild, not strong or bitter. The harvest of squash continues as well as turnips, celeriac and late broccoli. Even with the weather this year being cool and rainy, the crops seem to have adapted and are producing as usual. The general cleanup (hoops, row covers, stakes, etc.) goes on whenever we have time. We still have at least four weeks for the CSA, so our weekly share harvesting takes priority over other projects. The hoops for our new cold frame (new location and double the size!) are in place, while finishing the ends and inside will have to wait until they season slows down.

All things considered, it's been a good year on the farm!



Pumpkin Apple Treat

As fall approaches and the kids go back to school, here's a treat to make for after school or desert. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Apple Treat 

Put 1/2 can pureed pumpkin or 1 cup fresh puree, 2 peeled apples (chopped into pieces); 1 teaspoon each of cinnamon and nutmeg; 1/4 cup raisins and 2/3 cup apple or orange juice in blender and mix till smooth. Heat on medium stove till warmed through. Place in bowls and serve with vanilla cookies!


Tomato Season

  Tomatoes; finally. About 10 days later than usual, but all the heirlooms are beginning to come in. Nice size, very little cracking, the bushes are loaded with them. No sign of blight (it's been a very wet year), plants are healthy and don't appear to be stressed. Should be an excellent crop.

  Added to the bell peppers, yellow and red cipolini onions, and eggplant, we should have some good eating. And with all the other crops producing abundantly, our menu choices are almost endless.

   We continue to add plantings for fall as space opens up from earlier crops. Bugs (pests) are surprisingly light this year and have been easy to control. The only disappointment so far has been mosaic on a couple of zuchinni and yellow squash plants. We pulled the infected plants and the others seem to be fine. The German Cream and Fingerling potatoes are producing great with no disease or scab whatsoever. I will definitely plant them again. The Asian cucumbers are prolific and get the thumbs up too!

 All this talk about food has made me hungry; it's time to go out and browse (eat) in the gardens.


Banana Nut Wraps

Here's an easy breakfast sandwich to have at home or on the go!

  Thinly slice a banana and spread almond butter or your favorite nut spread on the slices; place in a double layer of romaine or iceberg lettuce and roll like a burrito. Make two or three of these wraps, add a drink and you have a healthy snack or breakfast to go! 



The busy season picking is upon us! With the usual mix of beans, kale, leeks, broccoli, greens and such, we have had a banner year for currants. We hand pick, so it is time-consuming, but we are pleased with the size and large quantity of berries. The bushes are so heavy with fruit they are bending over their wires and touching the ground. Add picking raspberries and I think my hands are permanently stained.

Tomatoes and peppers are still a couple of weeks out yet, but looking excellent so far. Cucumbers are just starting to produce. The zucchini and summer squash are producing as fast as we can pick! Winter squashes look good and we have started our plantings of fall crops. Beds not in use get a cover crop of rye grass and buckwheat. Straw mulch is being added wherever possible to help hold the moisture in. Garlic should be ready in about a week or so, then we will have to pull and cure the bulbs. We will again be offering garlic braids at the markets when the bulbs cure and we make them up. Potatoes are still green and bug free; but we did lift some plants to get some new potatoes for fresh sampling.

Overall, even with the extremely wet, cool spring, plants seem to have adapted and are producing well. I think that covers it for now; I'm back out to the fields to pick for the morning market tomorrow.


Green Beans and Leeks

  All you need for this recipe is 1 quart fresh green beans, 2 medium leeks, some fresh dill and some almonds. Wash and trim the leeks; cut length-wise into strips about the length of the green beans. place whole green beans and the leeks into a sauce pan; add enough water to saute them and prevent burning; cook on medium heat about 5 -7 minutes until leeks are tender. Drain and arrange on platter adding some almonds and dill ferns to the top. Garnish with fresh parsley and pansy flowers. Enjoy! 

On The Farm...

  All the crops are growing good despite the excess rain we've had. The CSA members are getting leaf lettuce, chard, beet greens, head lettuce (butterhead and crisphead), kale, radishes, kolarabi, snap peas, pac choi, asparagus and chinese cabbage. This week we will start to add zucchini, beets and peas. The other brassicas are doing well (pest free); as well as the cucumbers and squash. The corn was off to a bumpy start, but later plantings are holding their own. Keeping up to the weeds is always a challenge any year, but with the frequent rains we had, this year is especially challenging. So far we've been able to keep pace and control them. This week we plan to fertilize (compost) and lay down straw to help slow the weeds and conserve water for the plants to help get ready for the hot, dry days coming in July and August. Life is never dull and the work never finished.

  The new asparagus patch is planted and growing as well as are the beans for drying and shelling. we've added 2 new varieties to test and compare. Two new cucumber and onion varieties as well as 3 squashes round out our "new" trials to test this year. All are heirlooms and after the CSA members give their feedback on taste and appearance, we'll decide if we will add them to our regular offerings and plantings. Looks like the drizzle this morning has ended and I hear the weeds calling me; back to the grind!


Bean Wraps

  Today's recipe is easy to make. Cook some chopped onion and red pepper in a little vegetable broth until tender; add black beans and continue heating until beans are warmed through. Turn off heat and season with basil, oregano, chili pepper and parsley. Wash a butterhead lettuce under cold water and separate leaves. Set two(2) leaves together and place a spoonful of the bean mixture in the center; roll the leaves and beans into a burrito; folding sides as you roll. Arrange on a plate dressed with fresh strawberries and asparagus spears topped with almonds. Yum!

  If you want a cold salad without the lettuce, just mix in bowtie pasta in place of the butterhead lettuce and chill.


Food Prep 101 (continued)

  Today we will add pac choy, asian greens  and snap peas to our list of food uses.

  • snap peas - taste great lightly steamed or added to stir fries. Most people eat them raw in salads or as a snack.
  • asian greens - mixed varieties of mustard and brassica greens (mild or spicey mixes) used as a salad alone or mixed with lettuce. Larger greens can be steamed lightly ( whole plant is edible - stems, leaves and flowers) with the taste ranging from spicey mustard to light cabbage flavors.
  • pac choy - the tops and stalks can be used together or separately. Use the greens in salads or cooked. The stalks can be used much like celery. Strip the green tops, cut the stems or chop into pieces and add it to your favorite dishes. Use them as a healthy snack with dip or fillings.
  • kolarabi - great tasting raw or cooked. Peel outside skin like an apple, cut into thin slices and enjoy. Cut into slivers and add to salads or cook with veggies. Mild cabbage flavor.
 By adding fresh fruit and nuts to your salads, you can change the texture and flavor of the mixture. Pineapple, strawberries, pine nuts and almonds all liven up a salad. Being creative with your produce makes the difference between a boring meal and a standout dish. 
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