Monday, August 31, 2009

Our Fajita Harvest this Week

Dear Members,

Where did the hot summer go? How chilly it has been. Fortunately, we persevere and thus today harvested 30 pounds of beans, large candy onions, some lovely red and yellow sweet peppers, yellow roma tomatoes, and more. I thought of how tasty some fajitas would be with the goodies in the basket this week.

Thank you to those who came out to work over the week. We appreciated the help last harvest day with picking flowers for bouquets. 

Oh, if you like the biodynamic brandywine tomatoes you receive and would like to plant one of these in your garden next year (being an heirloom and not a hybrid you should consider it), simply squeeze the seeds out. Allow for mold to develop on the seeds to destroy the outer protective layer. Wash the mold off, dry, and then store in some baggies for the spring to plant and flourish.

We will have a workshop on 20 September from 1 to 4 P.M. on compost building that utilizes the biodynamic method. Compost building is ideal to begin in the fall for spreading around trees, on flower beds, vegetables, and the like in the spring. I shall send an e-mail with the details. Please mark your calendars.

Thank you!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Nothing says summer like tomatoes, peppers, and basil!

Some items you may receive for your baskets are:

-Heirloom Tomatoes
-Semi-hot Hungarian Peppers
-Green Bell Peppers
-Mustard Greens
-Swiss Chard
-Spanish Roja Garlic

Tomato Basil Spaghettini with Goat Cheese

1 (16 ounce) package uncooked spaghettini
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 fresh tomatoes, chopped
fresh basil leaves
2 tablespoons olive oil
freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 lemon, juiced
4 ounces soft goat cheese

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain.
In a blender or food processor, blend the fresh tomatoes, basil, garlic, olive oil, and pepper just until chunky.
In a bowl, gently toss the cooked pasta and tomato mixture. Sprinkle lemon juice over the pasta and top with goat cheese just before serving.

Hungarian Peppers and Eggs

2 green bell peppers
1 yellow Hungarian wax pepper
2 firm-ripe tomatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
8 large eggs
salt and pepper

1. Stem and seed green bell and Hungarian peppers. Cut bell peppers into 1/2-inch squares. Finely chop Hungarian pepper.
2. Rinse tomatoes, core, and cut in half crosswise. Gently squeeze out and discard seeds and juice; coarsely chop tomatoes.
3. In a 10- to 12-inch nonstick frying pan over high heat, combine oil, onion, all the peppers, and half the tomatoes. Stir often until vegetables are tinged with brown and all liquid evaporates, 7 to 9 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, in a bowl, beat eggs to blend with 2 tablespoons water, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.
5. Add egg mixture to vegetables and reduce heat to medium-low. With a wide spatula, lift cooked portion of eggs to allow uncooked portion to flow underneath until eggs are softly set, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to plates. Garnish with remaining tomatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

A Bit about Bats

The wind and rain blew so hard last night that, in the morning, on the wet lawn, lay an empty bat house. Farmer Anders and Gemma had an intense discussion about what lives in that small space. Gemma kept asking, what animal lives there? Rather foolhardy, I joined in with an answer - a bat. Of course, Farmer Anders knew that Gemma was looking inside and saw what appeared to be a spider nest. Where's the bat? I don't think any has lived here. What is this for? Bats. One of Pearl's children visiting, also chimed in on our brainteaser conversation: I know what bats are; they are vampires. Gemma said, they are what my brother uses to hit balls. And they live in that little house that fell to the ground. Vampires don't hit balls. Bats, whatever they are, certainly capture the imagination.

This may be because a bat is rather oxymoronic. It's a mammal that flies; it sees in the dark by listening to screams that are silent. Truly, though, this last bit of information makes our “intelligence” seem somewhat second rate. In other words, at a tremendous cruising speed they are able with little or no vision as we know it and in complete darkness to avoid tricky objects and to capture the tiniest of mosquitoes. How? They developed an ultra-complex sonar device 50 million years before we re-invented it.

About the vampire business, this bad rap results from a small group of South American bats. Contrary to popular notion, these creatures are tiny, do not possess hollow fangs for sucking, and do not prey on humans, and live in South America - not Transylvania. The funny thing about these vampire bats is that they make sneak attacks on Brazilian cattle and lap up their blood with their dainty tongues. That's not funny, but what is funny is that prior to this sanguine feast, they land 20 yards from their prey and tiptoe on the ground like giant-eared tarantulas wearing, one can imagine, goofy-looking smirks.  

Kind of takes the “oomfff' out of Macbeth's famous recipe concocted by the three witches:
Eye of a newt,
And toe of frog,
Wool of bat, 
And tongue of dog.

Wool of bat? You mean that stuff in the bat house?

Monday, August 17, 2009

Harvest Day and Welcome to New Members!

Dear Friends,

How hard it is to believe that we are now entering the second half of the season! A warm welcome to the new members and a heart-felt thank you to the departing members. We hope that there will be many opportunities for us all to come together in the coming months.

For your baskets this week:
Potatoes grown from Biodynamic Stock

French Fingerling potatoes are a light and creamy heirloom potato with delicious thin buff skin that never requires peeling! Distinctive yellow flesh with accents of rose red make this an attractive potato to serve. Delectable broiled with a splash of olive oil and sprinkles of thyme.

Pontiac Red Round potatoes with thin, deep red skin and crisp white flesh makes perfect creamy mashed potatoes. Great variety for growing baby potatoes.

Russian Blue’s texture is much like a russet so they are good to bake or mash, cook as French fry or even make into chips; but they also can be steamed or boiled. Roasting or grilling the halves will actually darken the colour and is most recommended, as the mild taste needs help with herbs and seasonings.

Freshly-dug Leeks

A Bunch of Parsley

Sweetest of Peaches - Contender Peaches

Georgia Southern Collards

Brandywine Tomatoes - take a look at the one we just picked: 1 pound 3oz! Not sold in grocery stores because they look bizarre, tomato connoisseurs believe they are the best.

In the bounty baskets, look for basil, peppers, magnificent heirloom tomatoes, flowers, and more.

Also, I made a batch of terrific goat cheese if I may say so myself: Garlic Chive! We have quite a few eggs for sale, as well.

Potato Leek Soup

3 pounds potatoes, peeled and quartered
6 cups vegetable broth
2 leeks, bulb only
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup white wine
salt to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
parsley to garnish

Cook potatoes in vegetable stock until soft. Set aside, do not drain.
Put potatoes in the work bowl of a food processor in batches. Add 5 cups of vegetable stock from the potato cooking pot. Puree until smooth.
Half the leeks lengthwise, and soak in water to clean. Finely slice. Saute in butter until transparent. Add white wine, and cook for 3 minutes.
In a soup pot, combine remaining cup of stock from the potato cooking pot and sauteed leeks. Stir in pureed potatoes, and bring to a simmer. Season with salt and white pepper. Cook to desired consistency, adding more stock if necessary. Garnish with parsley.

Peach Salsa

4 ripe, yellow peaches, peeled, stoned and chopped
1 small red onion, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1/4 cup freshly chopped cilantro
Juice of 1 lime

Preparation:Combine, peaches, onion, jalapeno, cilantro in a medium bowl. Drizzle lime juice over mixture and toss. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Can We Come Home With You?

A few weeks back, we were happy to learn that our little rabbit friend Filbert became a proud mother of five baby bunnies. Her babies are now young adults and need to move out of the nest. We would be ever so delighted if you would like to take a rabbit home with you. Rabbit manure makes excellent fertilizer for your garden. Worms love it, and so will your vegetables and flowers. Please send an email to or call 330.666.6152 to let us know if you would like to adopt a rabbit.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Our work day this past Saturday was a huge success! Many of you came to help out on the farm, and you brought 17 children! What wonderful energy we had for the plants that day. We really got a lot accomplished. Thank you. And thank you to our friend Pearl Whitley who made a spectacular lunch for us all.

The items you will receive in your baskets this week are:
-1 HUGE Copenhagen Cabbage - This is one big head of cabbage.
-Detroit Red Beets - Peel and shred these for a light, colorful salad.
-A bunch of swiss chard - A mixture of Ruby, Rainbow, and Fordhook Giant varieties.
-Basil - The ultimate summer herb.
-Heirloom tomato - With the warm weather comes tomatoes!
-A variety of rare peppers - Fish, Hungarian Hot Wax, Paprika, Jalapeno, Anaheim varieties....
-A bag of salad mix - A unique item for mid-August as lettuces like it cool.

Some recipes....

Tomato, Basil, Goat Cheese Salad
serves 4

-1 heirloom tomato
-1 small bunch basil
-6 oz. goat cheese
-extra virgin olive oil
-sea salt
-fresh ground pepper

Slice the tomato into 1/4 inch slices. Remove the basil leaves from the stems. Arrange the tomato slices, basil leaves, and spoonfuls of goat cheese alternating on a platter. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Vegetarian Cabbage Rolls
serves 6

1 medium sweet onion, diced
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 small cans tomato sauce
1 small can tomato paste
3 tablespoons water
1 tablespoons chopped parsley
1/4 teaspoon salt
ground black pepper to taste
fresh oregano to taste, chopped
1 tablespoon honey or to taste
1 medium head green cabbage
6 tablespoons goat cheese
1 cup uncooked white rice
1 egg
1 teaspoon curry powder

In large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat.
Add onion and garlic. Saute until onion is softened and just beginning to brown.
Remove from heat and set aside.
In saucepan, combine tomato sauce, tomato paste, water, salt, pepper, oregano and honey. Stir in 2 tablespoons onion sauteed onion.
Cover and simmer over medium-low heat for 15 to 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook rice in salted water until tender. Drain.
Wash cabbage and carefully remove 12 outer leaves. Steam or cook leaves until pliable.
Combine onion mixture with rice, parsley, egg and 2 tablespoons simmered tomato sauce. Stir in cheese, salt to taste and curry powder.
Spoon rice mixture into center of cabbage leaves. Fold in sides and roll up. Secure with toothpicks.
Place cabbage rolls in simmering tomato sauce and simmer 10 to 15 minutes.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

This Week's Offerings and Work Day this Saturday!

This Week's Offerings are:
*2 Large Leeks - These have a mild onion flavor.
*Red Skinned Potatoes - Perfect for roasting or potato salad.
*Green Bell Peppers - Crunchy and fresh, nice eaten raw or in a stir-fry.
*Candy Onion - Even bigger this week, these are great sliced on a sandwich.
*Zucchini - Medium sized with a delicate skin, very good with fresh herbs from our herb garden.

*Collard/Kale Bunch - Try juicing these greens for a healthy snack.

*Kohlrabi - Belongs to the cabbage family and got its name from a German word meaning "cabbage-turnip". They were popular in Germany during the 16th century and only recently have they been appreciated elsewhere. Both the leaves and swollen underground stem are edible, specially the stem which can be green, white or purple. Its flavor is milder than a turnip's. If young and tender they may be eaten raw, very thinly sliced.

Bounty Basket! (First-of-the-season tomatoes, roma bush beans, mild and spicy peppers, and a variety of mints - apple, spearmint, chocolate - for iced tea)


Farmer Jake's Limeade: serves 1

-1 apple, cored
-1 lemon, peeled
-4/5 leaves collards

Juice all ingredients in a juicer and drink slowly.

Roasted Summer Potato Salad: serves 4

-1.5 pounds potatoes, diced
-1 half candy onion, diced
-1 green bell pepper, diced
-1 zucchini, diced
-1 small bunch rosemary, oregano, thyme, tarragon, or any other fresh herb you like, removed from the stem
-3 Tbsp. olive oil
-salt and pepper to taste

Mix potato, onion, pepper, zucchini, herbs, and olive oil in a large bowl. Bake at 375 degrees for about 35-40 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Add salt and pepper to your liking. Serve warm.

Work Day this Saturday!

The summer days are flying by. So fast, in fact, that the first half of our season is almost over. The last pickup day for the first half of the season (Summer Share) will be Tuesday, August 11. The first pick up day for the second half of the season (Autumn Share) will be Tuesday, August 18.

To say farewell to our Summer Shareholders and welcome the Autumn Shareholders, we have scheduled a work day for Saturday, August 8 from 9am. to 12 pm. We hope that many of you can make it. This is an invitation to all members and your families. Everyone is welcome to join us after the workday for a homemade lunch prepared by Pearl Whitley, our chef. Please let us know if you plan on attending.