Q1. Where can I buy your salads?
A1. You have several options:
- Salads can be ordered by phone,
fax or E-mail (see contacts button).
- You can buy or pick them up:
a. At our farm during the season - (see Contact
info, Hours & Map for details).
b. At our stall the St. Albert Market on Saturdays
July 1 - Sept 30.
(see Contact info, Hours & Map for details).
c. Beginning in June 2006, on Thursdays we will
bring them to a central Edmonton location. Watch
this space for more information.
Q2. What is ‘mesclun’?
A2. Mesclun is a Provencal term
for a mix of many varieties of young red and green
lettuces, arugula, endives and chervil, either grown
together or grown separately and then mixed in the
salad bowl. Most of the pre-mixed salads that you
can buy in the supermarket will have some combination
of the above lettuces and greens, plus occasionally
a few herbs.
Q3. Why do they call them ‘baby
A3. It used to be that we grew lettuces
and waited until the leaves reached maturity before
picking them. This had 3 big disadvantages –
one, the leaves were often bitter by then (or ‘picked
over’ by various pests), two, once you picked
these leaves the plant was done so you ran out quickly,
and three, if they aren’t picked at the right
time they would quickly go to seed, making them
even more bitter.
are from the same lettuces and greens as those our
mothers & grandmothers grew (although we have
access to more varieties now), but they are harvested
as immature plants, usually less than four inches
long, and usually less than six weeks old. They
can be harvested entirely at that time, or using
what’s called a “cut-and-come-again”
method which is trimming with scissors or picking
each leaf by hand, leaving the crown or growing
point intact to regrow so that new leaves can be
harvested again in a few weeks. These greens are
usually extremely tender and tasty.
Q4. What are ‘micro-greens’?
A4. Micro-greens are intensely flavoured
thin delicate seedlings, shoots, and tiny leaves
of specialty vegetables. You can use them as garnishes
or toppings on almost any dish or make an entire
salad out of them. Included in our micro-greens
mix will be delicious beet tops, cutting celery,
kale leaves, kohlrabi shoots, upland and peppergrass
cress, show pea shoots, baby chard, and spinach.
Q5. If I can buy greens in the supermarket
why should I buy them from you?
A5. I can think of many reasons,
but there are three compelling ones:
- The most important one is FRESHNESS.
It is unlikely that a salad could go from a large
commercial producer onto the supermarket shelves
in less than several days; many of the salads
that you see on the shelves may be over 5 days
old. Particularly with baby leaf mixes, that is
one reason why they seem to deteriorate so quickly.
We sell our salads the day after they are picked.
We literally rush them from the field to the fridge
to keep them crisp and cool.
- The second is CHEMICAL-FREE.
If you wash green leaves vigorously (which is
what you’d have to do to truly remove the
sprays that might be on them), you will cause
them to wilt and literally wash some of the taste
away. Even if they are grown organically, commercial
growers have to pre-wash them before sending them
to the large retailers. As soon as you wash them
they will start to deteriorate at a quicker rate.
We do not wash our salads before we sell them.
We know that they might have a bit of dust on
them, or even a tiny bug – but nothing that
is going to harm people, and most customers take
it out of the bag and put it right on the plate.
If you do want to wash them (and we understand
that you might), we suggest that you wash only
what you will immediately use, and leave the rest
in the bag in the fridge – it will keep
much longer that way.
- The third is VARIETY. You will
never see pre-packaged salads with as many different
ingredients as ours have – and we believe
they are unique because they contain edible flowers.
Ours will give you more flavour than you are likely
to have tried outside a gourmet restaurant.
Q6. How can I grow my own salad greens
without growing a full vegetable garden?
A6. Mix salad veggies in your herb
and flower beds – plants such as Arugula,
Garland Round (Shungiku), and Mustards have lovely
edible flowers as well as providing tasty greens.
Many cabbages and lettuces are now very colourful
and have interesting textures as well as being flavourful.
The great thing is that most of these grow quickly,
easily, and do not have heavy nutrient requirements.
You don’t need to grow the 40 or 50 different
varieties that we do to enjoy a lovely salad. You
can even sprinkle in just a few varieties, and then
10 days later, re-seed again, for continuous growth