Fruit of the Harvest

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I missed early summer produce, completely. I was in the southern hemisphere last semester until late June, so no asparagus for me. But I wouldn’t swap a thing; seasonal foods always work their way back around the calendar, and sometimes, exciting adventures beg to graciously interrupt.

I decided to spend July and August working with my aunt. She runs a family-sized, small organic farm in Northern Maryland. Along with a full-time intern, a mentee, a few volunteers, and part-time me, she pulls together enough produce for restaurant deliveries, CSA programs, and farmer’s market sales. And at the end of a 10 hour day, she has to figure out exactly what to do with all of those too-ripe tomatoes that won’t meet market standards. Usually, salsa. The creativity and hands-on work never ends. And I’ve loved it.

While my family receives a weekly CSA bundle anyway, sharing a part in its production makes the food taste even better. When you have a fridge full of the sweetest, juiciest heirloom tomatoes, bold eggplant and buttery swiss chard, all harvested just hours earlier, there’s no end to what you can make. While I should (probably) be packing for my move back to Boston, I think I’ll soak in the benefits of dirt-covered skin and messy kitchen experiments for a moment more, before diving back into city life.

Oak Spring Farm. (Wear your sunscreen!)
Oak Spring Farm. (Wear your sunscreen!)
Sweet potato peeling
Sweet potato peeling
Hot pepper-tomato-peach taco assembling
Hot pepper-tomato-peach taco assembling
Saucy slow-cooking
Saucy slow-cooking
Cherry tomato harvesting
Cherry tomato sorting
Swiss chard sautéing
Swiss chard sautéing
Fresh tomato blending
Fresh tomato blending
Spaghetti squash roasting
Spaghetti squash roasting
Salad tossing
Salad tossing
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