Green Garlic


We are so excited to be offering a spring delicacy that we have never before grown at Brickel Creek this year: green garlic!  While I am certain that you are all familiar with the mature, cured version of this tasty treat, we hope that you will try its slightly less mature form!  Green garlic features a milder flavor than mature garlic, and is certainly a spring flavor to look forward to every year.


What is green garlic?

Green garlic (also called young garlic or spring garlic) is simply garlic that hasn’t fully matured.  Green garlic and garlic scapes are not the same thing. Green garlic is harvested young before bulbs develop or dry out, whereas garlic scapes are the flowering stalks of the mature hardneck garlic — an indicator that the garlic bulbs are ready to be harvested.  Green garlic has a more mild flavor than mature, cured garlic, and the entire plant is edible!

Using green garlic

Green garlic features a milder, fresher, and sweeter taste than mature garlic; it has a spicier bite than scallions, but can be used in much the same way. Use it wherever you’d use regular bulb garlic or green onions, or use it in recipes specifically designed to highlight its unique mild garlic flavor. Add raw green garlic to salads, dressings, and sauces. Try it braised or grilled. Add it to a frittata, a soup, or pair it with other spring treats like asparagus. Put green garlic in pasta, a rice bowl or a confit

Storage and Prep

Green garlic should be stored in the refrigerator, where it will keep for 5-7 days. Wrap the green garlic in a damp paper towel and place it in a plastic bag; or for a non-plastic alternative, stick the green garlic in a tall glass with some water in the bottom. To prep, trim off the very bottom of the bulb and use all of the tender white and light green parts.  Dark green leaves can be saved for stock, or used to add flavor to a soup (pop them in whole, like a bay leaf).


Asparagus Soup with Green Garlic

Many thanks to Alanna, of The Bojon Gourmet, for allowing us to share her wonderful recipe for an incredibly fresh, seasonal variation of classic asparagus soup.


The cooking method described below preserves the green hue of the soup; if you prefer, you can skip the blanching and cooling steps and simply add the asparagus with the water and potato. I think fat asparagus stalks tend to be more meaty and creamy, and make the best soup, but any tasty, in-season asparagus will do. Feel free to garnish the soup with chives, chervil, tarragon or cilantro; see the post above for more ideas.

Makes 6 servings

2 pounds (about 2 bunches) asparagus
3 large stalks (4 ounces) green garlic
3 medium leeks (12 ounces)
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 large yellow potato (6 ounces), peeled and diced
lemon juice, to taste
3/4 cup yogurt (whole or low-fat), or crème fraîche
zest of 1 small lemon (meyer or regular)

Fill a pot with 2 quarts of water and bring to a boil. Snap the woody ends of the stems off of the asparagus spears and discard; they will naturally break at the right spot. Keep the heads in tact and slice the stems. Blanche the asparagus in the simmering water for 1-2 minutes, until bright green and crisp-tender. Strain through a colander and into a large bowl, reserving the asparagus water. Rinse the asparagus under cool water to stop the cooking, and set aside.

Trim the root ends off of the green garlic and leeks. Slice the green garlic (leafy green parts included) crosswise into thin rounds, and place the rounds in a large bowl. Slice the leeks in half lengthwise, then slice the white and light green parts crosswise into 1/4″ thick half-moons. Place the sliced leeks in the bowl with the green garlic, fill with cool water, and separate the rings, swishing occasionally as they soak to release any sandy dirt, which will sink to the bottom. Scoop the leeks and garlic out of the water (you can repeat the soaking/scooping process if the leeks are super dirty), drain them in a colander and give them a final rinse.

Melt the butter and olive oil together in a soup pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Add the leeks and green garlic and saute until bright green and tender, 5-10 minutes. Add the salt, potato, and enough of the reserved asparagus cooking water to cover the vegetables, 4-6 cups. Bring to a boil, then cover the pot and simmer until the potato is very tender, 10 minutes.

Remove the lid and let the soup cool to warm, 30-60 minutes. (This is to preserve the color of the asparagus, but you can skip the cooling step if you prefer.)

Add the asparagus, reserving several pretty heads for garnish, and puree the soup with an immersion blender, or in batches in a regular blender, thinning with more asparagus water as needed. Stir in the juice of half a lemon, taste for salt, adding more salt or lemon as you see fit.

Meanwhile, stir together the yogurt and lemon zest.

Re-warm the soup, and serve in bowls with a dollop of lemony yogurt and a couple of asparagus tips. The soup will keep in the fridge for up to three days.


Recently, we have had many inquiries about purchasing produce directly from our farm.  We don't operate a traditional farm stand. However, we do take orders for pick up at the farm at a scheduled time.  If you would like to sign up to receive our seasonal pick list with pricing, as well as occasional news and updates about our farm, please fill out the form below.  We look forward to serving you!


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Weekly Harvest


Fall has finally hit here in Ohio, with the occasional frost warning buffered by unseasonably warm days.  The high temperatures are back up to 78 this week!!  With an unusually warm summer and fall, including a late "first frost", we have enjoyed an extended fall season.  We have been busy transitioning our beds, and creating seasonal low tunnels to provide some winter weather protection for some of our outdoor crops.  

In order to prepare our beds for winter, summer crops are removed, irrigation is packed away, beds are cleaned and raked, and some areas with persistent weeds are covered with tarps until spring.  Other beds are sown with a cover crop that will help to restore nutrients in the soil and suppress weeds.  In our high tunnels, we have a lovely new crop of cool weather greens, including spinach, lettuce, kale and chard.  These greens will produce all winter long despite the cold temperatures and reduced daylight hours.  

Last week, we constructed our outdoor, seasonal low tunnels to cover our herbs just in time for our first frost last Monday night.  We used a new system for our low tunnel construction this year and we could not be more happy with it!  PVC hoops have been placed over fiberglass fence posts, and secured with adjustable bailing twine attached to anchors on each hoop.  We can easily open each tunnel up for access to sunlight, water or harvesting by simply walking down each side and pushing the fabric to the middle and tightening the ropes.  It's just as easy to close it all up to protect from frost; walk down each side and gently pull the fabric to the ground, and adjust ropes as needed to maintain tension across the fabric.

After years of struggling with many different methods of attaching and weighting the blankets down to secure them, we are so happy to have found such an incredibly secure and efficient way to secure frost blankets and row cover.  We can't imagine ever doing it any other way again.  Special thanks to David Reed for helping us find this awesome method, and to the Market Gardening Success group, on Facebook, for sharing such useful information with us.



Weekly Harvest

  • baby kale blend
  • mixed greens lettuce
  • pea shoots
  • rainbow chard
  • spinach
  • dill
  • marjoram
  • oregano
  • parsley
  • sage
  • thyme 


Happy Halloween from all of us here at Brickel Creek Organic Farm

Thank you David Reed for carving this delightfully spooky pumpkin for the farm.  Here's hoping for bumper pumpkin crop in 2017!

"Trick or treat, give me something green to eat"


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The Stinking Rose


Garlic, affectionately known as "the stinking rose", but where did that name come from?  Garlic has been called the stinking rose for nearly a century, thanks to a French writer and physician, Henri Leclerc, who in 1918 roughly translated garlic’s ancient Greek name, scorodon, to skaion rodon, and then to rose puante, or stinking rose.

Garlic is an essential ingredient in many foods, and has been used traditionally for thousands of years in different medicinal remedies and cultural rituals.  There are hundreds of different varieties of garlic grown around the world,but they are mainly split into two categories: hardneck and softneck.  

Most commonly, the garlic you find at the supermarket is a softneck variety.  Softneck varieties of garlic have a mild flavor, and feature large cloves on the outside that give way to smaller cloves within.  One of the great things about softneck garlic is that it is easy to store and has a very long shelf life.

Hardneck garlic varieties feature more complex flavors, and produce larger cloves that grow in a circle around a hard stem.  Hardneck stems send up small bubils, commonly known as scapes, in the spring.  The scapes are delicious to eat and taste just like garlic!  One of the other differences between soft and hardneck garlic, is that hardneck garlic generally has a shorter shelf life that, depending on the variety, could be as short as 3 or 4 months or as long as a year.


Garlic is an easy to grow annual that is slow to mature.  In our climate, and most for that matter, garlic is planted in the fall and left until the following summer.  In the spring, we will have scapes to harvest, usually around the first of June.  By mid-July, we will harvest the garlic bulbs.  

After the garlic is planted, it is relatively low maintenance needing only occasional watering.  However, garlic doesn't like a lot of weed competition, so it is necessary to keep the weeds down.  We spent a few days prepping our field beds by adding compost, and cultivating the soil.  Good bed prep, and heavy mulching, are key to keeping the weeds down, and the garlic happy.

On October 15, we were so lucky to have a handful of hardworking volunteers out to the farm to help us plant our garlic crop for 2017. Many hands make for light work indeed: we planted nearly 3,000 garlic seeds in under an hour!  After a brief instruction on planting technique, our volunteers worked down the prepped beds, placing and covering the garlic seed.  What would have taken us many hours to plant by ourselves was finished quickly, and with great company!



After we finished our work in the garlic beds, our guests took part in a walking tour of our organic production beds, and greenhouses, and a wagon tour of the rest of the farm's land.  Then, we had a family style lunch of acorn squash lasagna, fresh salad greens and garlic bread-all proudly grown on our farm.  For dessert, David prepared a blackberry and rhubarb cobbler, with our blackberries, and fresh, fall rhubarb.  We could not have asked for a more beautiful fall morning to spend outside, or more wonderful people to spend it with.

Thank you so much David, Elizabeth, JD, Jackie, Brandon, Jo Anne, Sue, Hannah, Melissa, Patty and Aaron.                                           Your help is so deeply appreciated!

Weekly Harvest


Fall is a busy time on the farm.  With the first frost quickly approaching, there's a lot of pressure to transition beds and tunnels from summer production, to fall and winter production.  For our farm, this year that included finishing a rebuilt tunnel for our herb house.  In our herb house, our goal is to provide hardy, perennial herbs, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme, through the holidays, and then begin production a few months earlier in the spring.  It was imperative that we got this tunnel finished before cold weather set in.

Todd, from Tunnel Vision Hoops, was kind enough to come down from Cleveland to give us a hand finishing this project.  Todd led our team as we reinforced the hoop structure, built endwalls and covered the tunnel with double layer poly.  He used his expertise to install some awesome ventilation for us in this new house, as well.  We certainly couldn't have gotten this project done without him, and we are so thankful for Todd, Hannah, David, Melissa and Elizabeth who put in some long hours to get this project finished!



Weekly Harvest

  • pea shoots
  • baby kale
  • wheat grass
  • sage


Weekly Harvest


Fall has finally arrived in Ohio; quite quickly, we transitioned from 90 degree weather last week, to the mid 50's this week!  Our new fall crops are loving the change, but it does mean saying goodbye to the lingering hot weather crops that were still holding on in our fields.  This week, we spent some time creating new, permanent raised beds in our tunnels, and prepping for fall transplant.  

Next week, we will be working with Tunnel Vision Hoops to finish enclosing our new season extension herb house which will allow us to continue herb production into the cooler months this fall and winter.  

We are excited to announce that we are hosting a unique volunteer opportunity on our farm this fall.  On Saturday October 15 from 9:30am-1pm, we are inviting a limited number of volunteers to come out to the farm and participate in planting next year's garlic harvest.  If you have ever wanted to learn more about organic farming or if you just enjoy getting your hands dirty gardening, we would love to have you out to the farm!  

Join us at 9:30 am for coffee and brief discussion about the day's work.  We will begin planting the garlic seed at 10am and work until 12pm.  After we finish our work, stick around to enjoy a homemade harvest lunch featuring produce we have grown right here on the farm! 

We are looking for 15 hard working volunteers to work in 5 person teams with a farm staff member.  Bed prep will be done in advance, so we will be focusing specifically on selecting the seed and planting it.  Please dress to be in the field.  Gloves will be provided, as well as lunch.  To sign up, please email Hannah at brickelcreekfarm@gmail.com, or call or text Hannah at (937)524-4719.  We are looking forward to having you!  

For more information on this event, check out our events page on Facebook.

Weekly Harvest

  • basil
  • cilantro
  • dill
  • rosemary
  • sage
  • thyme
  • pea shoots
  • lettuce


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Weekly Harvest


We have spent most of our time this week preparing for our fall and winter productions, as well as preparing beds for winter rest.  Cover crops have been sown, as well as seeds for kale, lettuce and spinach.  The days are growing shorter, but summer heat is still hanging on here.  While you make think there isn't much to be done on the farm during the cold winter, we continue production year round in our high tunnels.  Winter is also an important time of planning and preparing for next season, at the farm.  The summer heat may seem to be lasting forever, but we know the days before first frost are fewer and fewer.


Weekly Harvest

  • rhubarb
  • basil
  • cilantro 
  • dill
  • rosemary
  • sage
  • thyme
  • lettuce


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Weekly Harvest


Last week was all about end of summer clean up, and fall garden preparation.  We finished clearing out all of this season's blackberry canes, and we got all of next season's blackberry canes trained up on the trellis system.  This system allows us to lay down the canes and cover them in order to successfully winter-over next summer's blackberries.  It's a lot of work, but it is a labor of love.

We bush hogged, cleared and tilled several summer production beds that were finished for the season, and we prepped our movable tunnels for this fall and winters greens production.  We have begun planning and preparing for cover crops to go into several beds on the farm, to help us improve soil structure and health over the winter.  Things are slowing down for right now, but it won't be too many weeks before we are into a new rhythm of fall and winter production and harvest. 


Weekly Harvest

  • acorn squash
  • lettuce blend
  • pea shoots
  • basil
  • cilantro
  • dill
  • rosemary 
  • sage 
  • thyme


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Weekly Harvest


Last week, we began the process of clearing out this season's old blackberry canes from the moveable trellis in order to make room for next season's to grow and winter over.  After a long, hot six weeks of harvesting record amounts of blackberries, it was a good feeling to clear out the old and make room for the new.  Also, a little bittersweet as we found the last few lingering berries.  

One of the great things about experiencing the season's at the farm is that while one crop may be fading and on its way out, another crop is sprouting, another is flourishing and another is peaking.  The blackberries are gone, and the old canes removed, and the sweet corn has all been harvested.  Our acorn squash is ready to be picked, and we are beginning to plan for holiday herb orders.

Our summer crops may be on their way out, but we are readily preparing for our fall and winter production, and anxiously awaiting cooler weather and with it the return of frost sweetened greens!


Weekly Harvest

  • sweet corn
  • lettuce
  • basil
  • cilantro
  • dill
  • rosemary 
  • sage
  • thyme
  • pea shoots
  • acorn squash
  • lavender


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Weekly Harvest


Two weekends ago, we were happy to be out at Dorothy Lane Market, Centerville's annual Farmer's Market showcasing some of our produce, as well as market specials like fresh cut bouquets and blackberry simple syrup.  We are looking forward to seeing all of you at Dorothy Lane Market, Oakwood, this Saturday, August 27 from 10am-1pm for their annual Farmer's Market.  We will be bringing some first of the season Acorn squash, lettuce blends, fresh herbs and lavender bouquets.  We will also have some of our blackberry simple syrup, made at the farm using our blackberries!  We are so excited about this product and the many creative ways it can be used to dress up anything from tea and lemonade, to craft cocktails!

Last week we began harvesting our bi -color sweet corn in between the late summer thunderstorms.  It felt like Spring arrived in August, and everything grew quickly last week, especially the weeds!  The heavy rain and thunderstorms didn't allow us much time to get in the fields, other than to harvest.  However, we picked and delivered several hundred ears of corn to Dorothy Lane Market and Whole Foods Cincinnati, setting new record highs for sales last week.

When the sun finally came back, at the end of the week, we were able to pull some of the honey from our hives.  We only take a small amount of honey from our bees, and leave the rest to help sustain them through the winter.  This seems to work well for our bees, and it gives us enough honey for ourselves, as well! 

 


Weekly Harvest

  • bi-color sweet corn
  • heirloom cherry tomatoes
  • lettuce mix
  • basil
  • cilantro
  • dill
  • rosemary
  • sage 
  • thyme



Blackberries, Baking and You!


On Sunday August 6, we hosted our first special event, at the farm.  We were so lucky to have Chef Anne Kearney, and Pastry Chef Jamie Bondurant, of Rue Dumaine restaurant co-host this event with us.  It was a beautiful day, and we are so grateful that we were able to host this event.  We are already busy planning to host future events, similar to this, that help us to showcase the many different seasonal items that we produce on the farm.



As our guests arrived, they were able to relax with a glass of blackberry lemonade, browse the fresh picked produce at our market table and get settled in our summer kitchen.  



From there, Chef Anne and Jamie took over for an instructional lesson on how to prepare Jamie's fresh blackberry buckle.  Jamie led us through the recipe step-by-step so our guests could recreate this wonderful dessert at home.  All of our guests went home with the recipe, as well as blackberries fresh picked that morning.



After Jamie's instructional class, our guests took a walking tour of the farm with Sue.  They also had a mini lesson in the technique for picking the perfect berry.  *Hint* It involves looking carefully at every berry we pick.



If you've ever had a blackberry that was not quite ripe, you know that it just doesn't taste as good as a berry at peak ripeness.  At Brickel Creek, we take the time to carefully inspect each berry for the perfect ripeness before it is packaged and shipped off to our consumers, usually the same day it was picked.  This means when you buy our blackberries you know you will be getting the absolute best quality every time.  



Overall, we were thrilled by the interest and participation in our event.  We loved having everyone out to the farm.  We can't wait to open up our farm for more events like this, in the future.  


We would like to extend a very heartfelt thank you to all of the wonderful people who attended this event, and the others who helped us make this event possible.  Thank you Chef Anne Kearney and Rue Dumaine, thank you Jamie Bondurant for showing us the steps behind your delicious creation, and thanks to  all of you for supporting our farm!