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Winter Week 5                    Geauga County, Ohio
Dec. 8, 2011

The Fair Share

What's cropping up!
Greetings from the farms!
Notices & Reminders
Summer 2012 CSA applications now online
Beef up!
In this week's shares
Last chance for holiday gift baskets
Turkeys make great holiday meals
Local food: The perfect gift
Bulk veggies available
Need a carpenter?
Looking for new pickup sites
Recipes for what's in season
Read Lyn Trier's local food blog
Registration open for food conference
Follow us on TwitterFind us on Facebook

"All the leaves are brown
And the sky is grey
I went for a walk
On a winter's day
I'd be safe and warm
If I was in L.A.
California dreamin'
On such a winter's day."  

-  The Mammas and the Pappas, California Dreamin'  




Buggy silhouette

Greetings from the farms 

As the fall/winter season begins to wind down, we would like to thank you for your participation!  We have enjoyed this opportunity to bring you items from the late season harvest, and hope you have enjoyed sharing them with friends and family.  


Michelle, Laura and the farmers of Geauga Family Farms

Buggy silhouette  


Notices & Reminders

We have had a few reports of potatoes with bad spots in the middle. We would like to apologize. This situation is caused by the wet growing conditions, and isn't apparent from the outside of the potato. We have done a lot of testing and have found that the smaller potatoes are much less likely to have this condition. Any potatoes in the shares will be smaller from now on.

A note about ordering extras through Paypal. You do not have to have your own Paypal account to do this. You can just use your credit card and it works the same way as paying with a credit card on other sites.


Sign up now for Summer 2012

The Summer 2012 CSA application is now available on our Web site. To fill out your application online, click here. If you sign up by Dec. 31, you will receive 2011 prices. Applications received after Dec. 31 will be subject to new 2012 pricing. 


Stock your freezer for the winter with GFF beef 

Specials for the Holidays

We're excited to announce great grass-fed beef specials to help round out your holiday meals. Geauga Family Farms beef is humanely-raised and grass-fed. This makes for healthier animals and healthier meat options for your dinner table. You'll feel comfortable knowing you are supporting local farmers who care about the animals they raise, and you will taste the difference.


We are providing a selection of beef packages for a special delivery option on Dec. 15 and 17 at a range of locations. Place your orders on our Web site at in the "2011 Season" section under the "Extras" heading by Sunday, Dec. 11, to take advantage of this special delivery offer. Delivery is provided free-of-charge for this special sale. Orders will be delivered by our beef farmers in a refrigerated truck and will be available for pick up at the following sites during the time periods listed:


Thursday, Dec. 15

Lowe's Family Greenhouse, Bainbridge - 2:30 - 3:30 p.m.

Congregation Kol Chadash, Solon - 4 - 5 p.m.

Bandy-Zalatoris residence, Cleveland Heights - 5:45 - 6:45 p.m.


Saturday, Dec. 17

St. Noel, Willoughby Hills - 9:30 - 10:30 a.m.

Hill's Family Karate, Mentor - 11 a.m. - Noon

Sage's Orchard, Chardon - 12:30 - 2 p.m.


Please feel free to contact Michelle Bandy-Zalatoris ( with any questions you may have regarding the special boxes or delivery details.


Please remember that our meat is also always available at Geauga Farms Country Meats on Route 422 in Parkman. See our Web site for details on what is available.



Small beef package - $66

This is a great introduction to the delicious flavor of grass-fed beef. The small beef package includes five pounds of ground beef in individual one-pound packages, one roast (approx. 2.5 pounds) and four steaks (two sirloin-approx. 1.25 pounds each, and two T-bone or strip (approx. 10-12 ounces each).


Large beef package - $92

An excellent combination of freezer favorites! This package includes 11 pounds of ground beef in individual one-pound packages, one roast (approx. 2.5 pounds) and four steaks (two sirloin-approx. 1.25 pounds each, and two T-bone or strip-approx. 10-12 ounces each).


Winter comfort package - $50

The perfect combination of cuts for soups, stews and slow-cooker favorites! Stock your freezer and you're ready for the cold, blustery days of January. You'll have the ingredients for a range of comforting meals with this package that includes one roast (approx. 2.5 pounds), 1.5 pounds of short ribs, 1.5 pounds of beef shanks, two pounds of stew meat and four pounds of ground beef.


Gift certificates

This is an excellent gift option for the locavores on your list! Choose the value you'd like to give, and allow the recipient to choose their favorite cuts at Geauga Farms Country Meats. It's a great way to introduce friends and family to the delicious value of locally-raised, grass-fed beef.


To order gift certificates, please e-mail Kathleen Webb at to let her know the value of your certificate, and send a check for that value to:

Geauga Family Farms

c/o Mr. Lester Miller

15480 Burton Windsor Road

Middlefield, Ohio 44062


Your gift certificate will be mailed to you for gift-giving. Please allow about eight days for processing.


Thank you for supporting the beef producers of Geauga Family Farms! With every purchase you are helping to create a viable, local market for high-quality, grass-fed beef.


Michelle, Laura, Kathleen, and the farmers of Geauga Family Farms

Buggy silhouette  


In this week's shares 

In this week's shares, CSA members can expect things such as eggs, bread, carrots, red- and green-leaf lettuce, squash, spinach, broccoli, Yukon gold potatoes, sweet potatoes, bok choy, kale, cauliflower, cabbage and beets. The boxes look fabulous this week. What a nice mix! NOTE: You may or may not receive all of the types of produce listed above. This is a list of possible items. Shares received on different days may include different items.

Last chance for holiday baskets 

The holidays are a great time to share the importance of supporting local farms with friends and family. We have many delicious and festive options for you! Please place your order by tomorrow (Friday) if you would like one of these wonderful Geauga Family Farms samplers. Orders may be placed through Paypal on our Web site, here.


Share the bounty of Geauga Family Farms or treat yourself with our special holiday gift baskets. Our gift basket includes a freshly baked loaf of bread, two pounds of decorative holiday cookies, two jars of Miller's jams, one pint of 2011 maple syrup, pound of Middlefield organic cheddar cheese, pound of Middlefield organic garlic and onion cheese, a 4-ounce log of fresh, plain chevre from Mackenzie Creamery and a 4-ounce log of cranberry orange chevre from Mackenzie Creamery. All of this is packed in a festive, wrapped basket.*

*You will need to remove and refrigerate the cheeses until you are ready to give this gift.


Cost per basket:  $48

Order by:  Friday, Dec. 9 - order through Paypal at


Delivery details: Boxes can be delivered to the Winter CSA pickup location of your choice. See our Web site for pickup locations and times. Delivery days will be Thursday, Dec. 15, for Lowe's Family Greenhouse, Congregation Kol Chadash and the Bandy-Zalatoris residence, and Saturday, Dec. 17 for St. Noel, Hill's Family Karate, Sage's Orchard and our warehouse.


Turkeys available for your holiday dinner

Marvin Hershberger has a few turkeys left that would make a wonderful holiday dinner. The turkeys are $2.75 per pound, and need to be picked up at the Hershberger family farm within the next week or so. These turkeys freeze well and would make a great local addition to your holiday meals. Please call 440-548-2399 to reserve your turkey. Ask for Rosanna or Iva Mae to place your order. 


Give the gift of local, organic produce      

Early-bird discounts will be available to anyone who signs up for the 2012 summer season before the end of 2011. The 2012 Summer CSA application is now available on our Web site here. CSA memberships make great gifts! 


Bulk veggies perfect for winter storage

The following winter storage items are available in bulk. Like all of our vegetables, these are certified organic and delicious! 


To order these items, call Rosanna or Iva Mae Hershberger at 440-548-2399. These can be delivered to our winter share sites for the next two weeks. Please make sure you are familiar of pickup days and times.


Yukon Gold Potatoes: 

5 pounds for $4.00

10 pounds for $7.50


Sweet Potatoes:

5 pounds for $4.50

10 pounds for $9

50 pounds for $45

Pie pumpkins

The Yutzys have a few more pie pumpkins left for the season.  If you would like to try that stuffed pumpkin recipe or freeze some pumpkin for winter baking, they are available for $2 each.   


Butternut squash  
Butternut squash is still available for $1 per pound. Steam or roast the squash, remove the seeds and skin and puree it for soups and baking. It freezes well for winter cooking needs!  


Pure Maple Syrup

Geauga County Maple Syrup makes a great holiday gift! We have 2011 syrup available in quart, half-gallon and 1 gallon quantities on our Web site under "2011 Season" in the "Extras" section. 


Need a carpenter?    

Before they got into farming full-time, most of our farmers did other types of work. Many have participated in the building trades. Some continue to do other work during the off-season to supplement their farm incomes and support their families. We'll bring you information from time to time about services that are available from our farmers. Feel free to pass this information on to others who might be interested.


D & A Hershberger Construction: 440-477-4438 (7 a.m. - 4 p.m. - leave a message if calling after hours)

Marvin Hershberger, one of our board members, is taking on some construction work this winter. His team is skilled in a range of interior and exterior construction projects, from detailed tilework and cabinetry to masonry and roofing. They have a significant amount of experience in drywall work, kitchen renovations, basement renovations and more. References are available. These craftsmen are available to work in locations within an hour's drive from Middlefield. Feel free to call Marvin to discuss your project needs.


Pickup sites needed for the 2012 season    

Do you have a pickup site or area that you would like us to consider for next season? Let us know now as we jump into our 2012 planning. Sites need a minimum of 40-50 members. We are happy to do a presentation about the program at your site to help drum up support.


Recipes for what's in season

Please share your favorite recipes with us. Send them to Laura Dobson at and we'll include them in an upcoming newsletter.


Roasted Root Veggies
1 of each root vegetable of your choice:
sweet potato
Plenty of chopped fresh herbs (many combinations work, but start with rosemary and parsley)
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt & pepper
Preheat oven for roasting at 400F. Wash vegetables thoroughly and then peel, completely removing any bruises or discolorations. Dice into irregularly-shaped one inch pieces (this shape will prevent them from stacking). Root vegetables have different densities, so some are much harder to cut than others. Be sure to take this into account to prevent injury.
In a large bowl, toss the vegetables with about 1 tsp. olive oil per vegetable until they are well-coated. Add chopped herbs and toss well to evenly distribute. Salt and pepper liberally, but remember that more can be added later! Spread out the vegetables in a roasting pan or baking sheet and put in the oven for about 25-35 minutes, stirring every so often to prevent burning or sticking. Vegetables should take on a slight brown color and be soft to the bite.
Serving Suggestions: Serves as an alternative to basic starches like rice or pasta and goes well with almost any simplyseasoned
fish, poultry or meat.
Recipe from Pacific Coast Farmers' Market Association -  


Baked Radish Chips 
This recipe is a great way to use up those Daikon radishes from last week.
10 radishes
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp paprika
Thinly slice radishes. Steam in microwave for 5 minutes. Put in bowl with spices; stir.  Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, flip the chips, and bake for another 10 minutes.
Recipe from  


Winter Squash Spice Cake 

Mashed cooked squash adds rich flavor and plenty of moisture to this spicy, delicious, easy cake. Serve this humble, homey cake plain with coffee, tea, or cold milk, or dress it up with a bit of whipped cream or ice cream. This cake is a great way to use leftover squash (if there's a bit of butter or sugar in the squash it doesn't matter much). Note that the spice mixture is quite flexible. The cake is tasty, if fairly simple, with just cinnamon. But you can fine-tune the combination to suit your tastes - and the contents of your spice shelf.

1/2 cup butter
1 1/2 cup packed brown sugar, granulated sugar, or some combination of the two
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup mashed roasted winter squash (any kind but spaghetti squash will work!)
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour or all-purpose flour or some combination of the two
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg and/or ground allspice
1/2 tsp. freshly ground cardamom (optional but delicious)
1/4 tsp. ground cloves (optional)
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper (optional - weird, I know, but tasty!)
Preheat oven to 325 and butter an 8-by-8 baking pan. In a large bowl or the bowl of a standing mixer, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy looking, about 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating for 30 seconds after each addition (this step helps build the structure of the cake, don't skip it). Beat in vanilla. Beat in squash. In a small bowl mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices. Add to squash mixture and stir just until completely combined. It will be a thick batter. Pour batter into buttered pan. Bake until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes. 

Recipe from


Sweet Potato Butter

6 cups diced peeled sweet potatoes

2 cups diced peeled tart apples

4 cups water

2/3 cup orange juice concentrate

1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

In a heavy saucepan, combine all ingredients; mix well. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 2 to 2-1/4 hours or until mixture is thickened and about one cup of liquid remains, stirring occasionally. In a blender, process mixture in batches until smooth. Transfer to jars or containers. Chill for at least two hours before serving. Store in the refrigerator. Great spread on toast.

Recipe from

Life Lyn Style

GFF member Lyn Trier, who wrote the column "Getting the most out of your CSA share" for the Fair Share all summer, is taking the winter off. However, you can still find her fun, chatty and informational blog at where she writes about her CSA memberships, food, exercise and eating local, and posts a photo of each item in her shares. Wondering what that weird vegetable in your share is? A link to Lyn's photos of every veggie in each week's share also can be found on our Facebook page. Thanks Lyn!  

Registration now open for the 2012 OEFFA conference


Granville, Ohio - Registration is now open for the Ohio Ecological Food & Farm Association's 33rd annual conference, Sowing the Seeds of Our Food Sovereignty, Feb. 18-19 in Granville (Licking County).

The state's largest sustainable food and farm conference, the event draws more than 1,000 attendees from across Ohio and the Midwest, and has sold out in advance the past two years. This year's conference will feature keynote speakers Woody Tasch and Andrew Kimbrell; more than 70 informative, hands-on workshops; two featured pre-conference events Feb. 17; a trade show; a fun and educational kids' conference and child care area; locally-sourced and organic homemade meals, and Saturday evening entertainment.
"Our conference title says a lot about what we believe and what we're trying to accomplish," says OEFFA Program Director Renee Hunt. "Farmers, businesses, chefs, and consumers are working together to reclaim our food sovereignty-rebuilding local food systems and Ohio's rural farming communities, demanding access to healthy, organic food and information about how that food is produced, and relearning sustainable agriculture practices that nourish our bodies, our communities, and the environment."
Keynote Speakers
Saturday's keynote lecture titled, "Slow Money: Investing as if Food, Farms, and Fertility Matter," will be provided by Woody Tasch. Tasch is the chairman of the Slow Money Alliance and inspired the Slow Money movement by writing Inquiries into the Nature of Slow Money: Investing as if Food, Farms, and Fertility Mattered.
The Slow Money Alliance advocates for sustainable financial investments that support local, community-based food and farm businesses. So far, $4.5 million has been invested in 16 small food enterprises through Slow Money's national gatherings. In the last year, $5 million more has been invested through Slow Money chapters.
For 10 years, Tasch was chairman of Investors' Circle, which has invested $133 million in 200 early stage sustainability businesses since 1992. Tasch also served as treasurer of the Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation where, as part of an innovative mission-related venture capital program, a substantial investment was made in Stonyfield Farm, now the world's largest maker of organic yogurt.
Sunday's keynote lecture titled, "The Future of Food," will be provided by Andrew Kimbrell. Kimbrell is one of the country's leading environmental attorneys and the founder and executive director of the Center for Food Safety (CFS) and the International Center for Technology Assessment (CTA). The Center for Food Safety pursues public education, policy advocacy, and legal actions to curtail industrial agricultural production methods that harm human health and the environment, including genetic engineering.
Kimbrell is author of 101 Ways to Help Save the Earth, The Human Body Shop: The Engineering and Marketing of Life, Your Right to Know: Genetic Engineering and the Secret Changes in Your Food and general editor of Fatal Harvest: The Tragedy of Industrial Agriculture. His articles have appeared in numerous law reviews, technology journals, magazines, and newspapers across the country, and he has been featured in documentary films, including "The Future of Food."  In 1994,Utne Reader named Kimbrell one of the world's leading 100 visionaries. In 2007, he was named one of the 50 people most likely to save the planet by The Guardian-U.K.
The conference will also feature more than 70 hands-on, educational workshops and cooking demonstrations with topics including: bramble and strawberry production; no-till farming; edible landscaping; pest management; compost; pork, beef, and lamb production; poultry nutrition; food preservation; food safety; social investing; farm and business planning; renewable energy; mushroom production; season extension; mulch; cover crops; aquaculture; dairy health; recordkeeping; Farm Bill policy; co-ops; small space gardening; companion planting; organic certification; fiber production; permaculture; tax planning; genetic engineering; field crops; grassroots organizing; conservation funding; cheesemaking, and more.
In addition, the conference will offer a three part series of workshops about high volume hydraulic fracturing (HVHF), commonly known as "fracking," which is an intensive extraction process that uses a high pressure chemical cocktail to fracture rock to release natural gas. The workshops are designed to educate farmers, landowners, and concerned citizens about the environmental and social risks of this process, existing laws and regulations, and what actions can be taken by landowners and community organizers.
The conference will also offer the following featured conference guests:
-          Jeff Moyer, the director of farm operations at the Rodale Institute and an expert on organic crop production, will discuss no-till organic farming, utilizing cover crops to enhance soil fertility, and effective compost management.
-          Gary Zimmer, farmer, author, educator, and president of Midwestern Bio-Ag, will discuss nutritional considerations for pasture-based dairy operations.
-          Dan Ravicher, a patent law professor and executive director of the Public Patent Foundation (PUBPAT), will provide an update on a federal lawsuit against Monsanto which seeks preemptive court protection for farmers who may be accused of patent infringement if they become contaminated by Monsanto's genetically engineered seed.
Preconference Events
Two onsite preconference events will also be featured Feb. 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The first, "Slow Money for Ohio? Financing the Local Food System," will feature Slow Money Alliance founder and chairman Woody Tasch and a panel of experts, to talk about Slow Money, the challenges of capitalizing the local food economy, and successful strategies to nurture sustainable food systems and businesses.
The second preconference event, "No Till, No Drill, No Problem: Integrating No-Till Methods into Organic Production Systems," will feature Jeff Moyer, director of farm operations at the Rodale Institute, to discuss practical ways to build soil fertility and tilth, suppress weeds, and manage cover crop rotations, to increase production.
Additional Features
The conference will also feature a kid's conference offering a variety of exciting workshops for children ages 6-12; a playroom for children under 6; a book signing by Woody Tasch and The Contrary Farmer, Gene Logsdon; an exhibit hall offering an interesting array ofinformation, products, services and resources that relate to sustainable agriculture; a raffle; a non-denominational Sunday service; and Saturday evening entertainment, including a performance by The Back Porch Swing Band and a film screening and discussion of The Greenhorns.   

"No matter who you are-a farmer or a conscientious consumer-there's something valuable for you at the conference. We look forward to sharing this programming with everyone," Hunt said.

 The Ohio Ecological Food & Farm Association (OEFFA) is a state-wide, grassroots, non-profit organization founded in 1979 by farmers, gardeners, and conscientious eaters working together to create and promote a sustainable and healthful food and farming system. For more information, go to
Conference Registration
To register or for more information about the conference, go to the OEFFA site.

Contact Us:

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