By Kelly Bissonette
My first week on the Farm at St. Joe’s has been an amazing experience. The weather has been incredibly pleasant, with the minor exception of one rain storm which we managed to avoid on Wednesday because we were at the market. Monday began with picking cherry tomatoes and an abundance of cherry tomatoes at that- nearly 80 pounds worth! It was therapeutic to mentally get lost in the tomato vines and to be surrounded by the beautiful colors of the greenery and the tomatoes. I absolutely love the color gradient the cherry tomatoes make as they ripen, it is very visually appealing and emphasizes the awesomeness that is nature. On Tuesday I used some of the tomatoes I had harvested to make whole wheat pizza with roasted cherry tomatoes. Samples of the pizza were given out at the market to showcase the tomatoes and there was very positive feedback.
Before the market on Wednesday we harvested green and red peppers which are currently in growing in abundance. It is neat to see all of the different varieties and shapes of peppers that grow here in the hoop house. Today I was able to plant some kale seedlings that will be planted this fall and utilized in the winter. Kale is one of my favorite vegetables and it is perfect for hearty soups to keep you warm in the winter.
As a future dietitian, it is important to know where healthy food comes from. Consequently, I have been asking farmer Dan a plethora of questions and am gaining so much knowledge working alongside him. Overall, I have enjoyed seeing the many different varieties of vegetables, how they grow, and how they are harvested. My favorite part of the week was the entire experience of bringing cherry tomatoes from farm to table because cooking with the freshest ingredients not only tastes the best, but is the most nutritious. I’m looking forward to more great experiences on the farm next week.