|vegetable bed in the Orchard|
|the Insectary in full bloom|
As of September 22 Autumn begins.
We are really feeling the change of season at the farm.
The light is different, days are shorter and mornings are cooler.
We are in that moment of seasonal overlap when our basil and tomatoes
are still going crazy alongside the squash beds.
A very busy time for all of us who work the farm,
including the bees who make frequent visits to our crops
|see the bee upper left above the blossoms as he zooms in|
|landing on the top sunchoke blossom|
|moving to the one to the right of the top one|
|and a closer look at our Busy Bee at work!|
Sunchokes are also called Jerusalem artichokes,
although that is a bit of a misnomer.
They are not related to an artichoke, although their taste can remind you of one.
And, no they are not from Jerusalem—one theory
is that "the name is probably derived from the Italian name
for a sunflower, girasole, which means turning to the sun."
Do you know they can grow to be 10 feet tall?
Executive Chef John Toulze has gotten very creative with sunchokes.
Besides creating sunchoke chips, which we are lovin' more than potato chips,
they were center stage during the girl & the fig dinner
at the James Beard House this spring roasted
and served alongside pan roasted black cod.
|photo by Phil Gross for the James Beard House|
Dish from Plats du Jour: the girl & the fig's Journey Through the Seasons in Wine Country.
Creativity and flexibility is the key for John and the other chefs
as they harvest the fruits of summer and the early bounty of Fall.
In a recent interview with The Huffington Post, John said:
"Nature does not always work in accordance with a chef's schedule.
You can't predict much," he says. "Normally, rhubarb means
spring, strawberry is spring and summer, delicata squash is fall.
There was point last year I was harvesting all those in the same time."
This flexibility about what seasonality really means
is why you can still find the popular heirloom tomato & watermelon salad
on the menu at the girl & the fig on the first day of Autumn.
What Summer farm inspired dish will you soon miss most?
And what Fall delicacy are you looking forward to making?