No sleep 'til November

I hate to admit that you probably could have predicted this, but it’s now August 18th and somehow all of July and half of August vanished before our eyes without a proper blog post. The punishing pace of August harvest has been hot and heavy, and our market schedule gives our weekly rhythm a certain… shall we say… chaotic tempo. My beloved sister left the farm a few weeks ago to move on to the next exciting chapter in her life (San Diego with her boyfriend, where she’ll grow avocados and citrus year round and we’ll live vicariously through her), so we’re back down to 3.5 farmers. With the invaluable help of our favorite neighbors/blueberry pickers, plus one very wonderful Papa Berg (who helps us with our Sunday market every single week like clockwork), we’re barely keeping our heads above water within our five market weekly routine. Each market rush (Thursday, Friday, Saturday x 2, Sunday) is barely over before the harvest for the next one ramps up again.   

Not that we’re complaining. Our harvests have been prolific and delicious, and we’re so thankful for the productivity of our land in our first high season on our new farmstead. 500 pounds of eggplants a week leaves us slightly concerned about the structural integrity of our barn floor, but late summer veggies are officially upon us – and so, in order to abide by our strict LLC bylaws, we eat a minimum of one tomato sandwich per person per day. Hot peppers are starting to build heat, tomatoes are rolling in, and tomatillos, okra, and Mexican sour gherkins are the little unusual mysteries that our most adventurous customers bring home with them every week.  

We’ve had what feels like an abnormal number of 1,000 degree days, but probably isn’t. When we want to get whiny about our desire to jump forward to sweater weather and snow and a slower pace, we try to remind ourselves and each other about how much we look forward to this steamy and fast-paced season each winter. At no other times of year are the fruits of our labor so literal, so immediate, so present, or so delicious. And the tomato sandwiches really help with the weariness. There’s nothing more nourishing.

Now, for some photos:

 In case you're wondering what 450 pounds of eggplants look like, here it is.

In case you're wondering what 450 pounds of eggplants look like, here it is.

 Mexican sour gherkins, the surprise hit of 2015!

Mexican sour gherkins, the surprise hit of 2015!

 Turns out the rumors are true! Tomato hornworms glow under blacklight, so this is our new preferred picking method - out after dark, hunting by flashlight, squishing under our boots. 

Turns out the rumors are true! Tomato hornworms glow under blacklight, so this is our new preferred picking method - out after dark, hunting by flashlight, squishing under our boots. 

PS – What’s a tomato sandwich, you ask? Good question! A tomato sandwich is very simple and very strict: it’s a slice of bread, then mayo, then a THICK (half inch minimum) slice of a juicy heirloom tomato, then a little sprinkle of salt and pepper. Nothing more and nothing less. If you’re doing it the way my father taught me was the only way, the bread is required to be a fat slice of white Italian bread from the Columbus Bakery in downtown Syracuse. But, assuming you don’t live in Syracuse, another type of flaky, crusty, chewy Italian bread will have to do.

(If it has basil on it? Sounds delicious, but not a tomato sandwich. What about a little cheese? Yes, we also like cheese with our tomatoes sometimes, but sorry, it’s not a tomato sandwich.)