Week 7 Geauga Family Farms CSA July 18, 2017
"To forget how to dig the earth and to tend the soil is to forget ourselves." ~ Mahatma Gandhi
"Every child is born a naturalist. Their eyes are, by nature, open to the glories of the stars, the beauty of the flowers, and the mystery of life." ~ R. Search
"Nature is not a place to visit. It is home."
~ Gary Snyder
"I think having land and not ruining it is the most beautiful art that anybody could ever want."
~ Andy Warhol
"You didn't come into this world. You came out of it, like a wave from the ocean. You are not a stranger here." ~Alan Watts
Welcome to Week 7 of the CSA season!
CSA membership is all about relationships. It's a relationship with the farmer who grows your vegetables, and a relationship with the people for whom you prepare those vegetables. It is also a relationship with the land on which they are grown.
At our house, we eat only organic food. We seek out restaurants that serve local and organic food. The farms, our homes and those restaurants all share the same dwelling, the earth. We all are related. Our nourishment is from the earth. As the saying goes, we are made of earth; to the earth we will return.
I spend every Tuesday with my 3-year-old grandson Luke. Part of our relationship involves teaching him to eat good food and being outside as much as possible. Luke loves to spend time in my small vegetable garden with me. As we head out the door, he tucks his little hand in mine and says, "Let's go check out the garden." I always take him up on his invitation, even in a soft rain.
For Luke, every day is a day of discovery, or re-discovery. His relationship with nature includes the flora and fauna on the path to the garden. He pauses along the way to feel the Lamb's Ear growing in the flower bed and tells me again how soft they are. He walks up the steps to see if the tiny tree frog is still living in the flower pot under the rain chain and checks on the status of the bird feeder to make sure the birds have enough sunflower seeds.
We wander the garden and eat whatever is in season. Peas he has to be cajoled into eating on his plate at dinner he happily picked and ate earlier in the summer. When the cucumbers finally produce, I hope he will look at them with a new eye as well. Luke's relationship with the world around him isn't limited to the garden. We leave the fenced-in area and continue our tour into the yard and woods. He has almost singlehandedly cleaned the currant bush of its fruit and eats every blueberry he finds. He is waiting impatiently for the apples and peaches to ripen.
While Luke doesn't really understand this for the relationship it is, whether it's crops we've tended, plants given freely by nature, or small wildlife we've encountered along the way, he enjoys them all equally.
Luke and I invite you to join us, to come along on this adventure with us, and to expand upon your relationship with all the life on the land that feeds you. You have already taken a big step toward beginning that relationship by supporting Geauga Family Farms.
You understand that all life on the planet matters and you have taken responsibility for your food relationship with land and nature by eating local organic produce. You possibly go beyond that and even buy from other organic farms in your community and supplement from grocery stores that purchase local organic produce.
You can further expand on these relationships by speaking to your legislators about your feelings on agricultural policy and by insisting that local organic foods be served in your schools, workplace and in the restaurants you frequent.
You're already off to a great start. We are thankful for our relationship with you.
~ with Rachel Machesky and the farmers and families of Geauga Family Farms
In this week's shares
Look for some of these items in your share this week.
Lettuce (red leaf, green leaf, Romaine), potatoes, cherry tomatoes, regular tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet onions, cabbage, lettuce, rhubarb, zucchini, blueberries, kohlrabi, beets, green beans and Swiss chard.
NOTE: You will not receive all of the types of produce listed above. This is a list of possible items. Different size shares and shares received at different times of the week may include different items.
New in our farm store this week
Want to add some favorites to your weekly share or preserve a bunch of your favorite veggies to eat all winter? Look for quantities of these items, small and large, in our farm store. Look for more items as we progress through the season.
Kohlrabi - $3/bunch
Beets - $3/bunch
Slicing tomatoes - $15/bushel or $2/pound
Zucchini - $24/half-bushel or $1 each
Reminder: schedule your July 4 make-up share
If you elected to put your share on hold for the July 4 holiday, don't forget to schedule a date for your make-up share. We can also give you a farm store credit if you prefer.
We include recipes each week using the items in your share. While we always find great recipes to share, we'd love for you to send us your favorite recipes as well. We will include them in the next newsletter. Please e-mail them to LDalheim@geaugafamilyfarms.org.
Member Mike Curran sent in this recipe for kale chips with a one-word description: Yum!
Preheat oven to 350. Line a non-insulated cookie sheet with parchment paper. With a knife or kitchen shears carefully remove the leaves from the thick stems and tear into bite-sized pieces. Wash and thoroughly dry kale with a salad spinner. Drizzle kale with olive oil and sprinkle with seasoning salt. Bake until the edges brown but are not burnt, 10 to 15 minutes.
Recipe from allrecipes.com
Tomato Salad with Basil Oil
2 pounds tomatoes, scored and cut into wedges
1 medium-size sweet onion, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
12 basil sprigs
Salt & pepper to taste
¼ cup basil oil
Basil oil: In a small bowl, prepare an ice-water bath and set aside. Bring a small pot of water to a boil over high heat. Using metal tongs, add 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves to boiling water, pressing down to submerge them. Remove basil as soon as it wilts and turns bright green, about 4 seconds; transfer basil to reserved ice-water bath and steep until chilled, about 1 minute. Drain basil and squeeze out as much water as possible. In a blender, combine basil and ½ cup olive oil; purée on high speed until mixture is smooth and bright green. Place a small, very fine-mesh strainer over a soup bowl and pour the basil purée into strainer. Allow oil to drip through mesh for 5 to 6 hours (don't press down on the purée, as oil will get murky). Discard pulp and pour basil oil into an airtight container. Store in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. (Makes ½ cup)
Recipe from ModernFarmer.com
Kale Salad with Parmesan Croutons and Spiced Pumpkin Seeds
½ cup olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon (about 3 tablespoons)
1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
2-3 cloves garlic
1 tsp. salt, or more to taste
1 bunch kale (about ¾ pound), tough stems removed and leaves chopped into bite-size pieces
Parmesan Croutons (recipe, below)
Spiced Pumpkin Seeds (recipe, below)
2 Tbsps. finely grated Parmesan
In a food processor, pulse olive oil, lemon juice, Dijon, garlic, and salt until smooth and emulsified. In a salad bowl, toss kale with dressing; let rest 10 minutes to allow kale to soften slightly. Add croutons and pumpkin seeds to taste, then toss to combine. Sprinkle salad with Parmesan and serve immediately.
Makes 3 cups
½ day-old baguette, cut into ¼-inch cubes (about 3 cups)
¼ cup olive oil
1 cup grated Parmesan
Preheat oven to 350°F. In a large bowl, toss bread cubes with olive oil until evenly saturated. Sprinkle grated Parmesan over top and toss until bread cubes are thoroughly coated. Spread onto rimmed baking sheet and bake, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and fragrant, about 20 minutes. Allow to cool on pan. Store in an airtight container for up to a week.
Spiced Pumpkin Seeds
Makes 1½ cups
1½ cups raw pumpkin seeds (about ½ pound)
2 Tbsps. olive oil
1½ Tbsps. honey
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground cumin
½-1 tsp. cayenne pepper, or to taste
½ tsp. salt
Pinch of freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 350°F. Spread raw pumpkin seeds on ungreased rimmed baking pan and bake for 10 minutes, shaking pan occasionally so seeds don't burn. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk remaining ingredients together.
Remove pan from oven and carefully add seeds to bowl, tossing to evenly coat. Return seeds to same baking sheet and spread out in an even layer. Continue roasting seeds, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and fragrant, about 15 minutes more. Allow to cool completely on pan, breaking up any seeds that clump together. Store in an airtight container for up to a week.
Recipe from ModernFarmer.com
Not ready to commit to a weekly share, but would like to order items from our farm store from time to time? You can sign up for store access and order items like beef, eggs, bulk produce, honey, jams, syrup and more and pick them up at one of our convenient pick-up sites.
to sign up for store access.
Sign up for the remainder of the season anytime
Taking a summer vacation and want to wait until later to sign up? No problem! The price of your share will be pro-rated to charge you only for the remaining weeks in the program.
to sign up now.
Letters from our members
Our warehouse manager Abner Miller, received this heartfelt letter from member Kristi Ward and her family a couple weeks ago. We thought you'd like to read her kind words.
Dear Mr. Miller and family,
Thank you for providing the delicious vegetables to my family through the Geauga Family Farms CSA. We are so grateful to be able to participate and receive.
We pray for you, your family, the other GFF families and support staff. We are truly thankful for your hard work and knowledge of organic farming. We also want you to know that we understand some weeks might be better than others with regards to crop yields. We are patient, and again, thankful for what we receive.
We have enjoyed learning about garlic scapes, kohlrabi, beets and the different varieties of lettuces. We got a stack of books from the library about CSA vegetable cooking. We made kohlrabi fries, chard and garlic scape pesto and roasted beets. The lettuce in the Week 3 box was the most flavorful lettuce I have ever tasted.
We are a family of seven: my husband Sean, me, our oldest daughter Erin, then Sarah, a son Michael, a daughter Kelly and our youngest daughter Bridget. We have a rather small yard, but we have enough space to grow things in containers and raised, square-foot beds, but only in small amounts. We do this because we want to teach our children about growing food and the lessons to be learned from it. They have pulled radishes only to find skinny roots. They have seen kale nibbled to stems by insects. They saw quite a few tomatoes get blossom end rot last summer. So when we receive your boxes of beautiful CSA vegetables, we truly appreciate the hard work, persistence, patience and knowledge you and your fellow farmers have.
We are thankful to participate because 1) everything is delicious and 2) it supports the teaching we are trying to provide to our children. This is significant because we live in the suburbs where big grocery stores are nearby with anything you could want within them. We are thankful for this, but we don't want our children to take food for granted.
So thank you again for your efforts. We enjoyed reading your letter and we eagerly anticipate our weekly boxes coming to us throughout the summer. We hope to attend a farm event too.
Again, we are praying for you all, in our morning prayers, and certainly when we say grace before meals!
Kristi Ward and family
CSA Cooking Classes
July 28, 6 p.m.
Loretta Paganini School of Cooking, 8613 Mayfield Road, Chesterland
Cost: $45 for members, $65 for non-members (The extra $20 covers the cost of a week's share, which is sent home with the student.)
Using products delivered straight from Geauga Family Farms Community Supported Agriculture bags, attendees will prepare and take home the week's share for several wholesome and delicious dishes. Chef Kate will lead the group in all aspects of preparation, packaging, will offer tips on handling and storage, and demonstrate how to make three dishes as she prepares a tasty meal for the group. One of the Farmers will also be at each class to answer questions. If you've ever been stumped by how to use the surprise items in your CSA, this is the place to find inspiration!
There will be additional classes each month. Visit lpscinc.com
for more information.
To sign up for the classes, click here
Farm-to-Table Dinner at Sapore
Aug. 23, 6 p.m.
Sapore Restaurant, 8623 Mayfield Road, Chesterland
Join Chef Loretta Paganini and Geauga Family Farms as they join together for a farm-to-table dinner. The dinner will feature Chef Loretta's excellent cuisine fashioned from Geauga Family Farms' finest produce and meats.
Menu: Goat Cheese Stuffed Sweet Peppers; Cheddar Corn Chowder with Crispy Bacon Chips; Summer Mixed Melon Salad with Champagne Vinaigrette; Pan-Seared Walleye with Fresh Vegetable Ratatouille; Grilled Beef with Tomato Balsamic Steak Sauce, Heirloom Potato Salad; Peach & Blackberry Cobbler with Honey Gelato
Local food, farming, environment in the news
We have so many things we'd like to share with you regarding the local food movement, what is affecting the food you eat and the world around us, and much, much more, but we don't want to make our newsletter any longer. So, we include links to articles you may find interesting. Here are a few. If you run across any articles you find interesting and think other members would be interested in reading, feel free to send us the link for inclusion in an upcoming newsletter.
(Between the regular business hours of 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday - Saturday ONLY PLEASE!)
Laura Dalheim, 440-478-9849,
Rachel Machesky, 216-246-8254,
Geauga Family Farms, Middlefield, Ohio 44062