Summertime in West Michigan is a time of plenty on the farm. All the year’s preparations are about to pay off. Now that we are in July…almost anything goes! Usually by the fourth we start to see the markets fill with beautiful rainbows of color, each packed with phytonutrients!
With so many options of fruit and veggies, it can be tough to decide how to prepare them. A grill, in my opinion, is one of the best ways to enjoy just about anything off the farm. Magic happens when the sugars in our foods caramelize, creating a taste that cannot be duplicated with anything other than fire. I have grilled apples, broccoli, beets, cabbage, carrots, cherries…the list goes on. Even grilled romaine lettuce isn’t half bad! A favorite thing to do in my family is to grill large medleys of various fresh vegetables together drizzled with maple syrup. This adds to the caramelizing effect. Large pieces can go directly on the rack while smaller bits are best on a piece of tin foil. Grill until charred on the outside and soft in the middle. Use a fork to check for softness. Enjoy! It’s that easy. Back that up with peaches charred directly on the grill with a scoop of your favorite ice cream. If you can dream it, it’s likely possible on the grill.
July also marks the end of our fiscal year here at KFB. The last 12 months have been transformational for the Grow team in a few ways:
- The addition of a new In-Vessel Composting Machine from Green Mountain Technologies has helped to close our loop of sustainability in Kent County. Our now fully operational unit can take in up to 500 lbs of organic matter a day, transforming potential food waste and scraps into food for the farm.
- We began a new farm in Holland! The Kids’ Food Basket Farm Ottawa + Allegan –on the Ridge is located at 226 104th Ave. in Holland. We are seeking more volunteers to lend a hand with the planting and harvesting this season, so please spread the word. Our own Zack Allen will be your host as you help to develop this new resource for the community. Take a virtual tour today with the video below!
- We have added seven new Farm to Pantry partnerships, who will receive fresh produce straight from our farms all season long. Two of these new partners are in Kent, and five are in the Ottawa + Allegan area!
- We distributed 161,107 servings of produce to our community through Sack Suppers and Farm to Pantry partnerships. That’s almost 21,000 pounds of food!
This was all possible because of our community’s support. This year, nearly 11,000 volunteers contributed more than 64,000 volunteer hours. Without our #KFBCommYOUnity, we would not be able to continue to raise the ceiling year after year.
Have a safe and delicious summer!
Farmer Jason and the Grow team