September 10, 2019

Sugar Sand getting more productive every year!

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Don’t tell this to your friendly neighborhood Monsanto farmer but I believe that organic soil can feed the world. How do I know this? It has to do with a sandwich that’s launching tomorrow.

That’s Ray. If you’ve been following this blog you may know that Ray is our #1 Farmer Crush – well, maybe tied with Michael Docter ;). In Ray’s hand: sugar sand. That’s what the farmers at Next Barn Over call the soil on their farm. It’s fed by the Connecticut River, and it makes veggies taste better than the ones you can buy in the grocery store. It’s full of worms, and tilled cover crops, and organic matter. No pesticides have touched it for years, which some people would say is a mistake; pesticides are yucky, but they increase yield, right?

Last year I visited Ray and spent some time learning about sweet potatoes (I ended up writing a story for The New Farmer’s Almanac about it.) Sweet potatoes grow from a “slip,” which is a tiny piece of hacked-up sweet potato stem. It looks like nothing when you plant it. But if you treat the soil right, and the weather is hot and humid enough, each “slip” makes many sweet potatoes. Last year I watched farmers pulling up sweet potatoes the size of TROUTS.

Ray writes to us each year when the sweet potatoes are ready. Last year (2018) the harvest was 125% more productive than expected. This year (2019) it was 150% more productive than expected. This means that more sweet potatoes are growing from the same amount of slips planted!

Every year we take sweet potatoes from Ray, roast them skin-on (another benefit of organic, you can keep the skin on, tons of nutrients there), drown them in Enzo’s addictive Shoyu mayo, add a super fresh red cabbage salad, and sprinkle some tempura-fried sesame seeds on them. That’s the JSP.

Launching tomorrow. Thursday if you don’t have the app.

PS: We do secret early releases of all the seasonal sandwiches via the app, so if you use the app tomorrow, you can get the JSP without hopefully having to wait in insane lines.

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