Martin, our unofficial season-keeper, delivered the first Fava beans of the season yesterday. These are the ones that are so sweet, they need no cooking.
So, the gang is all here: morels, green garlic, artichokes, and lamb! It’s a beautiful thing.
Our first soft shell crabs from the Chesapeake Bay came in two days ago. We never know how long the season will last, but we do know we’ll have them on the menu this weekend.
Martin Bournhonesque, our source for impeccable arugula among other leafy greens, recently sent us a movie he made last September. It features his prized, antique, Planet Junior push seeder; a device that was developed in the 19th century and perfected in the 1930s. He thinks his model is 50-80 years old, and he also believes, “the older they are, the better they work.”
Martin’s farm is in Salinas (# 13 on our Farmers map) and he’s pretty sure it was spinach he was planting last September with his trusty Planet Junior.
This weekend: sautéed soft shell crab with Martin’s spinach in brown butter and capers. While they last.
And just off the wire: minutes ago, our mushroom hunter Anthony showed up with a boat-load of morels foraged from the Burney area, above the Pit River. They’ll be on the menu this weekend as well. And everyone knows nothing says “I love you, Mom” quite like morels. And soft shell crabs. And spinach.
In 1999, after farming for ten years Martin decided to take a few years off. He begin working his current farm in 2003. He wants and has wanted from the beginning to create a chef’s kitchen garden.
Oliveto co-owner Bob Klein helped Martin connect with friends in Italy and Martin was able to obtain a various heirloom seeds. Now, some of the vegetables Oliveto gets from Martin are the descendants of seeds purchased from Bob’s Italian friends.