Raymond’s Ruined Purple Kale…

Ruined Purple Kale

Hundreds of kale plants are dead or dying, after copping 300 ml of rain on 20/21 April, and then another 90ml of rain and hail on Anzac night.

Most will need replanting, instead of producing a weekly crop of curly leaves from every plant.

This scene is getting repeated across many growers in the Sydney basin area – anywhere around the hunter, central coast, Gloucester, Hawkesbury, Horsley park, Picton and Camden.

Raymond and the Giant Silverbeet

Raymond’s daughters with the giant silverbeet

Once upon a time a grower called Raymond planted some silverbeet and it grew and it grew and it grew…

Has a Harvest Hub supplier just grown Sydney’s largest silverbeet?

A few weeks ago Raymond, a favourite Harvest Hub supplier who grows lots of our broccoli, corn and silverbeet on his farm at Freeman’€™s Reach planted some silverbeet. The paddock had been fallow for 3 years, then he’d ploughed chicken manure into the soil so it was in great condition ready for a bountiful crop of silverbeet.

Raymond was busy with his other crops so the silverbeet quietly grew. The result… possibly Sydney’s largest silverbeet!

In fact, to quote Raymond, “The silverbeet has gone a bit stupid!”

Here at Harvest Hub we don’€™t normally go for ‘big’€™ fruit and veg. We’€™re more about the flavour, supplying food that is in season, grown locally and with as few chemicals as possible. That’s what makes Raymond’€™s giant silverbeet all the more amazing -€“ on his farm he doesn’€™t use drip irrigation or chemical fertilisers.

The silverbeet was grown with all natural fertiliser (chook poo) and caring for the soil turning it and lettting it rest awhile. End result is something pretty amazing!

We tasted it and, unlike smaller silverbeet which has a slight bitter taste, this is smooth and peppery.

 for mother nature         for a thoughtful farmer.

Swiss Chard (Silverbeet) pesto for pasta

  • 1 knob butter
  • 2 tbs of olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • Bunch of Swiss chard
  • 50g pine nuts (Harvest Hub)
  • 100g fresh parmesan or pecorino cheese, grated Harvest Hub)
  • Handful of fresh coriander leaves

Wash the chard thoroughly and shake to dry. Melt the butter in a saucepan with the olive oil. Peel and chop the garlic and saute for 2 minutes. Chop the chard stems and add them to the pan. Stir and then cook, covered, for 5 minutes. Roughly chop the chard leaves and add them to the pan. Cook for another 3 minutes. Toast the pine nuts for a couple of minutes (either under a pre-heated grill or in a dry pan). Turn off the heat under the chard. Add the coriander leaves, pine nuts and parmesan. Puree the mixture until it looks like pesto. Stir through with pasta.