Organic spinach at Vital Veg, Aberdeenshire

Newsletter 9th April 2018

On the Farm
At last a ray of sunshine!  The sun has even been strong enough to cause some of the ploughed fields to steam… If you have never seen this dramatic phenomenon it is worth looking for on a cool but sunny day if you are out and about in the countryside at this time of year.

The rooty vegetables of winter are coming to an end over the next few weeks and will be replaced by leaves from our tunnels.  This week sees spring greens in more boxes.  These are very different from the cabbages that we grow outdoors and you will find the leaves are extremely tender and snap easily to the touch.  Cook these very lightly soon after delivery to enjoy at their best.

We also have more salads, now that the days are longer, with lettuces, salad mixes, chard and spinach all making an entrance now.  You will find some or all of these in your boxes in the coming weeks.  As with the spring greens, eat these leafy veg soon after delivery, leaving the rooty veg for later in the week.  This way you can enjoy the veg at their best.

We cut our spinach when the leaves are quite big.  They go crinkly when the temperature in the polytunnels changes a lot (as it does at this time of year!), so please don’t be put off by any that look a bit odd.  Big leaves are just as tasty raw as the little ones, so we have included a salad recipe for you to try if you have never eaten raw “big” spinach!  If you want to cook the spinach then just chop it into manageable sized pieces and wilt in a pan with a knob of butter.  It will shrink a lot because these leaves are so juicy!

Recipe: Spinach & walnut salad with blue cheese dressing
A quick recipe for 2 people from the BBC Good Food web site.  

75g blue cheese
4 tbsp crème fraîche
100g baby leaf spinach
50g walnut pieces

Mash the blue cheese, crème fraîche and some seasoning in a bowl with 50ml water until smooth and pourable.

Chop the spinach into bite-size pieces and put into a serving plate, scatter over the walnut pieces and drizzle with the blue cheese dressing.

Of course you can add any other salad leaves you have (including finely chopped spring greens!)