1st Harvest Week May 1st - 7th, 2002
Season 7
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"Community means strength that joins our strength to do the work that needs to be done. Arms to hold us when we falter. A circle of healings. A circle of friends. Someplace where we can be free."
- Starhawk


What’s in the box this week:
Baby carrots
Rainbow chard
Mixed bunch of collards and kale
Green garlic*
Spring onions

*see "Q&A"



... and if you have an extra-fruit share:
three additional baskets
of strawberries!



Sat. May 18 - Open Farm Day, 1pm - 5pm

Sat. Jun 8 a Farm Work Day! from 8am on (details in newsletter)

Sat. Jun 22 - Summer Solstice Celebration 4pm - 10pm, with The Banana Slug String Band!

Sat/Sun Aug. 3&4 - Children’s Mini Camp,
10m Saturday - noon Sunday. Optional early arrival Friday night.

Sat. Sep 21 - Fall Equinox Celebration,
3pm - 9pm

Sat. Oct 26 - Halloween Pumpkin U-Pick,
all day

Nov. 20/23 (Weds/Sat) ***Last box !***

Welcome, everyone, to the start of our regular 30 week CSA season! Just seven years ago the farm’s CSA started with 15 members. Never would we have imagined that in a few short years this wonderful piece of land and its caretakers would be welcoming more than 230 members to share in its bounty. In my first newsletter in early April I tried to explain what Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) has meant to us, and I thought it would be appropriate to share that same impression again, for the benefit of the members who are just starting this week. As someone once said in a book about CSAs called Sharing the Harvest, "Starting a CSA is a little like having a baby - you unleash biological and social forces that take you in directions you never expected." Our intention in choosing to farm has always been to create a more direct relationship between you, the land, and the food. It gives us, including those of us who work on the farm, the opportunity to connect in a meaningful way to others who care (like we do) about the food we eat. A CSA provides the opportunity to step outside of today’s ‘instant’ society, and to reconnect with our environment and the seasonal cycle of life. Through CSA you can experience how and where your food is grown, learn more about the complexities of providing this food, and celebrate together with the children of this community, the magic and wonders of nature we might otherwise forget. We believe it is through this type of cooperation, between farm and community, that a sustainable local food supply will become a reality.

Eating a CSA share is almost like having your own garden; the difference is with a CSA you have to do less of the work. However, throughout the season we encourage everyone to experience the workings of this farm by at least visiting us at our scheduled events (see the calendar posted in this newsletter), or if you are so inclined, this year we will experiment with involving members directly in the farm’s operation. We invite all you farmers and gardeners at heart to join us and volunteer at critical times in the season to help in the many tasks involved such as planting, weeding, harvesting, fruit drying, trellising tomatoes, baking bread, milking the goats, and the list goes on. This is supposed to be fun and work so, mark your calendars if you are interested and join us at an orientation meeting and farm work day on Saturday June 8th at 8am. We will keep you posted through this newsletter about the details and specific jobs we’ll need your help with. Please contact us if you are planning to come, and children are of course welcome!!

In your share this week you will find many greens, and if you are new to a CSA we encourage you to experiment and boldly go where no cookbook has taken you before. Eating with the seasons can be a bit of an adjustment, however. Fortunately over the last few years we have had help with this from our wonderful and creative newsletter editor and recipe maven, Debbie. She has created an extensive database of recipes on our website, and also inspired many a member to prepare the more under-appreciated veggies like beets and kale in ways that even their children have loved. So check out that website and by all means contact Debbie directly if you want to share your experience preparing and cooking with your weekly box of goodies.

What's Up on the Farm
If you ever find yourself sitting next to a farmer in a local coffee shop and don’t know how to strike up a conversation, try the weather. As I am writing it's pouring outside and we are supposed to pick our strawberries which are hanging off the vine red, ripe, and sweet. Hmm, and those green beans are supposed to germinate any day now... cold and wet won’t help them. And the peach leaf curl (makes the leaves look reddish, wrinkled and curled up), which has been particularly bad this spring, will continue to thrive under these conditions. The good news is that the "two-spotted spider mites" on the strawberries are going to be knocked back and give the "red predatory mites" we released last week the upper hand. Farming means working with the elements of nature and therefore its uncertainties. Walk into a produce department at any grocery store and it is easy to get the impression that all fruits and vegetables are always bountiful and available year 'round. However most of the time this produce has been mega-farmed, processed, packaged, maybe even irradiated, and transported long distances to reach the store shelf. By joining a CSA you will discover that, although there are some risks, there are many rewards inherent in eating food that is in season and grown locally.

(a repeat from last week, for the benefit of our full membership)
Q: How the heck are we supposed to distinguish between green garlic and leeks? They look identical.
A: You're right. When the garlic is young, it has not yet formed its distinctive 'bulb', and the branching of the upper green leaves is indistinguishable in appearance to that of leeks. Your most dependable method of determination is your nose... give 'em a good sniff (maybe score into the flesh with a fingernail to get a good whiff) and your nose will tell you which is garlic and which is leek.

Have a burning question about the farm, organic farming, CSAs, something in your box, or anything you think we can answer, call or email us and we'll see if we can't answer it here!

Member to Member Forum
(Okay, just one more carryover from last week, but then for sure we'll have our full membership up to speed and won't have to repeat topics our April Share members have already seen!)

Dear members: any chance that a few of you (the more the merrier) would be willing to keep a diary of how you went about using the contents of your share in any given week -- and then report back to us through this forum? Your stories would be of great interest to the rest of us, as we're all in the same boat, and seeing how others use their share would be insightful. Any willing takers?

To contribute to this forum (or the newsletter), please submit your info to the editor (click here) by Monday 9am to get it into the following week’s issue. Keep in mind that members don't receive newsletters until the following Wednesday and Saturday (if you're reporting on a timely event!).

Notes from Debbie’s Kitchen . . . . . . . . Have a recipe you’d like to share? Contact the newsletter editor.

Not a lot of room here; let's see what we can come up with! - Debbie

Winter Greens with Currants, Pine Nuts and Brown Butter
serves 2-4
modified from a recipe in "Field of Greens" (to suit the contents of this week's box)

2 to 3 tbsp. butter
1 tbsp. dried currants
Your entire bag of kale and collards, washed, de-stemmed and chopped
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 stalk green garlic, white and light green part only, finely chopped
1 tbsp. toasted pine nuts
salt and pepper

Soak currants in a bit of hot water to plump them. Toast pine nuts in a small, dry (i.e. no oil) skillet over medium heat until golden, stirring frequently. Empty toasted pine nuts into a small dish and set aside. In same skillet over low heat, melt the butter and allow to simmer until the solids separate from the liquid and it takes on an amber hue. Remove from heat and set aside. Heat oil in a large sauté pan. Add garlic, and sauté a few minutes until soft. Add greens and a splash of water if dry, and continue to sauté another 3 to 4 minutes until just tender. Lower heat and add the brown butter, currants, and pine nuts. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately, being sure to include the sweet pan juices.

*Click Here* for a link to a comprehensive listing of recipes from Live Earth Farm's newsletters going back as far as our 1998 season! You can search for recipes by harvest week OR by key ingredient. Recipe site is updated weekly.