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Fall/Winter Week 5               Geauga County, Ohio
Nov. 30, 2012

The Fair Share

What's cropping up!
Welcome back!
In this week's shares
Summer 2013 CSA application now available!
Bulk produce available
Certified-organic beef for sale
Composting low-priority for restaurants
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""You can pay your doctor, or pay your farmer."

~Quote from the movie:

Ingredients: The Local Food Movement Takes Root





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Welcome back!

We hope you had an enjoyable holiday break. The short break was much appreciated by all of the farm families. Thanks to all who purchased turkeys and made the trip out to the farms for pickup. We hope you had a great experience. CSA pickups resume this week and we are looking forward to bringing you more veggies that are fresh from our fields and our greenhouses.


Now is a great time to start getting ready for holiday meals and get-togethers. If you can take a little bit of time to roast your winter squash and sweet potatoes (about an hour at 400 degrees), they can be pureed and saved in one-cup increments in the freezer. Or use the puree right away to pre-make squash soup, pumpkin muffins and sweet potato tarts that can be popped in the freezer and pulled out for last minute additions to holiday meals. Check out the recipes below for easy make-ahead favorites. You will also find recipes for festive appetizers to feature local, farm-fresh produce at your next gathering.


We're excited to announce that our 2013 Summer CSA application is now available here. Now is the time to treat yourself or someone you love to a season of healthy eating! As in years past, the price will be discounted through the end of 2012. There are also a couple of new features this year - you receive a $5 refund for every new member who sends in an application with your name in the referred by section. In addition to our single and family shares, we are also offering a half-share for the 2013 season that will be perfect for singles. Check our Web site for additional information.


Thanks for bringing Geauga Family Farms to your table! 



Michelle Bandy-Zalatoris, Laura Dobson and the Farmers of Geauga Family Farms

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In this week's shares

In this week's shares, CSA members can expect things such as Lacinato, Red Russian or Green Winterbore kale, Red Leaf, Green Leaf or Green Romaine lettuce, hoop-house tomatoes, acorn squash, pie pumpkins, acorn squash, sweet potatoes, cauliflower, carrots, garlic, radishes, mustard greens, cabbage, broccoli and Brussels sprouts. 


NOTE: You may or may 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. 


Give the gift of a Summer 2013 CSA share

Sign up now for discounts

CSA shares make great gifts for the holidays! And if you sign up before the end of the year, you will receive a discount. The application is now available on our Web site here to mail in. The PayPal application will be available on our Web site soon.


Bulk produce available

We still have lots of bulk veggies for sale so get some while they last.  


#1 Sweet potatoes - $31/half-bushel (about 20 pounds)

#2 Sweet potatoes* - $20/half-bushel (about 20 pounds)

Butternut and acorn squash - $1 a pound


*The #2 sweet potatoes, while fine for eating, are not the prettiest potatoes you've ever seen. Some have marks or were cut by the shovel when we were digging them up. 


To order bulk produce, please leave a message at the warehouse at 440-693-4625, or call Rosanna at home - 440-548-2399. You will receive an invoice via e-mail, and will be able to pay by check or with a credit card using our PayPal site.



We include recipes each week using the items in your share. We'd love for you to share your recipes with us and we will include them in the newsletter. Please e-mail them to


Make-Ahead Pumpkin Muffins

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

1 cup pumpkin or squash puree
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil
1 ¾ cups flour (a combination of whole-wheat and white flour works well in this recipe)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
Blend pumpkin, eggs, water and oil in a large bowl. Sift together remaining ingredients and add to pumpkin mixture. Line or grease muffin tins. Fill to about 3/4 full. Bake at 400 degrees about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. When muffins are cool, place in a freezer bag and place in freezer. Thaw in refrigerator when ready to use.


Sweet Potato, Bacon and Blue Cheese Bites

(Makes about 36)

3-4 large sweet potatoes, scrubbed, skins left intact

¼ cup olive oil

Salt, pepper, thyme and paprika to taste

8 oz. blue cheese, crumbled

4 slices bacon, cooked and chopped

2 green onions, sliced thin

Slice sweet potatoes into ¼" thick rounds. Toss with olive oil and a few sprinkles of salt, freshly ground pepper, thyme and paprika. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet and roast at 400 degrees for about 25-30 minutes. The slices will start to soften and brown. Remove tray from oven and top each slice with ½ teaspoon of blue cheese and ½ teaspoon of cooked, crumbled bacon. Return to oven and cook for about 5-6 minutes more, until cheese is melted and bubbly. Remove from oven and garnish with finely chopped green onions. Serve warm.


Butternut Squash and Parmesan Dip
Serves 6 as an appetizer

1 butternut squash, halved and seeded
2 teaspoons olive oil
3 sprigs of fresh thyme, divided
1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, divided
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup half and half

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Rub each half of the squash, inside and out, with a teaspoon of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place upside-down on a foil-lined baking sheet, with one sprig of thyme tucked into the cavity of each half. Roast for about 45 minutes, until a fork poked into the non-hollow end of the squash slides in easily. Remove and let cool just slightly.

Scoop out the flesh of the squash halves and add to the bowl of a food processor. Add 3/4 cup of the cheese, the leaves from the remaining thyme sprig, nutmeg and salt. Pulse until blended, then pour in the milk or half-and-half while the machine is running.

Transfer mixture to a small gratin dish (about 8 inches long) or a shallow pie plate. Sprinkle on the remaining 1/4 cup cheese and return to the oven for about 20 minutes. After 15 minutes, turn on the broiler so that the top of the dip gets brown. Serve with crackers, toast or pita chips.


Easy Baked Kale Chips

1 bunch kale

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 teaspoon of salt or seasoned salt

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). 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-size 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.


Piedmontese beef sale

If only certified-organic, grass-fed beef will do for you, we have that, too! Dominic Marchese of Manna Farms (a Geauga Family Farm located in Trumbull County) has organic beef available for purchase.

He raises Piedmontese cattle, a beautiful specialty breed from Italy. Piedmontese beef is known as the leanest, most tender and most heart-healthy beef, with less than half the cholesterol and fat of bison and chicken.

We are now taking orders of this beef by the full-cow (average 500 pounds), half-cow (average 250 pounds) or quarter-cow (average 125 pounds). The price for these options is $4.62 per pound, hanging weight. This cost covers processing costs and the provision of vacuum-sealed cuts to maintain the highest quality.

Call to place your order with Dominic or schedule a farm tour any time this fall through December. You can reach Dominic at 330-719-3492. Only a limited number of cows is available, due to the increasing popularity of Piedmontese beef with area chefs. This beef cannot be delivered - you must make arrangements with Dominic for pickup.

This is a great way to experience the finest in locally produced beef, and it is only available for a limited time each season through Geauga Family Farms. Don't delay, call today! For more information, visit


Article from NPR's The Salt

For Restaurants, Food Waste Is Seen As Low Priority

by Eliza Barclay

A row of restaurants in the Cleveland Park neighborhood of Washington, D.C., looks tantalizing - there's Vietnamese, Italian, New American.

But if you walk around to the alley at the back of this row you might gag. 

Dumpsters packed with trash are lined up, and they get emptied only twice a week. Which means a lot of food sits here, filling the block with a deep, rank odor.

Some of the Dumpsters aren't properly sealed, so grease and putrid juices are pooling beneath them. They may attract pigeons, rats, cockroaches, ants or flies, says Robert Corrigan, who runs the New York Rodent Control Academy. The academy trains restaurant workers on how to keep pests away. He says Dumpsters filled with restaurant garbage are one of the main reasons pests are multiplying across the country.

"Even a half a lemon that drops off a Dumpster and rolls underneath a stairwell - tiny flies will lay hundreds of thousands of eggs on that half a lemon," says Corrigan.

Even when the Dumpsters are emptied, the problem of food waste is just moved somewhere else. Dump trucks transport thousands of tons of food waste every day to landfills. That's where food waste becomes Jean Schwab's problem.

"Food waste is huge," says Schwab, a senior analyst in the waste division at the Environmental Protection Agency. "Food waste is now the No. 1 material that goes into landfills and incinerators."

Schwab says food waste from restaurants makes up 15 percent of all the food that ends up in landfills. And all that food doesn't just take up space and attract pests - it's also changing the climate.

"Because it rots so fast, basically it starts to generate methane really quickly," says Schwab.

Methane is a greenhouse gas that's 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide. And reducing methane emissions from sources like landfills is one of the Environmental Protection Agency's biggest priorities in the fight against climate change.

But in spite of the fact that as much as 10 percent of the food a restaurant buys ends up in landfills, hardly anyone in the restaurant industry gives it a second thought.

"It's just another thing we're used to as a restaurant professional ... the amount of garbage that's thrown out on a nightly basis," says Cruz Goler, head chef at Lupa, an Italian restaurant owned by Mario Batali in New York City. "It can be a little staggering, I guess, but that's just what happens."

Back in Cleveland Park, Logan Cox, executive chef of Ripple restaurant, says chefs obsess over the quality of their vegetables and their technique. They want to make sure everything looks and tastes just right. But food waste comes in low on the long list of priorities.

"I've never taken the time to weigh or measure how much we do throw away," says Cox.

According to Jonathan Bloom, who wrote a book last year called American Wasteland, consumers are part of the problem, too. "There's about a half-pound of food waste created per meal served," says Bloom. "That's taking into account both back- and front-of-the-house waste. So restaurants and the customers are both joining forces to waste a whole lot of food." (Listen to a recent interview with him onScience Friday.)

About three cents of every dollar consumers spend on food away from home ends up in the trash. And that doesn't even include the food left on your plate or the slimy lettuce forgotten in the fridge.

Chris Moyer of the National Restaurant Association says getting restaurants to focus on food waste is a big challenge. Food scraps, of course, are inevitable, but a lot of food waste is still edible.

The hardest part for many restaurants may just be getting the workers to become aware of how much edible food they waste every day. A few years ago, when Moyer was managing a big chain restaurant, he wanted to show his cooks there were plenty of opportunities to reduce waste. So he took away the garbage can.

"You'd be surprised, once you take away the garbage cans, if people have to ask permission to throw something away how little you throw away," says Moyer. "It was really quite amazing."

But Moyer says getting the whole industry to take on food waste is going to take a lot of training and education - that's what the NRA is trying to do with itsConServe program. And as we've reported, Unilever's food division now has a program called United Against Waste.

But habits are harder to change than the menu.

"The hardest part about doing anything to benefit the planet, benefit your bottom line is behavioral change," says Moyer. "Because that's really what we're talking about - changing mindsets, changing behaviors."


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(Between the regular business hours of 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. PLEASE!)

Farm Representatives:

Laura Dobson, 440-478-9849,

Michelle Bandy-Zalatoris, 216-321-7109,

Grass-fed beef & poultry

Kathleen Webb, 216-408-7719,

Geauga Family Farms, Middlefield, Ohio 44062