20th Harvest Week August 20th - 26th, 2003
Season 8
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"How we eat determines to a considerable extent how the world is used."
- Wendell Berry


What’s in the standard share:


Veggies and herbs:
Orange and red carrots
Fresh onions
Hungarian hot peppers
Fingerling potatoes
French breakfast radishes
Summer squash
Small bag of stir-fry mix
Sungold cherry tomatoes
Regular red salad tomatoes
Heirloom tomatoes



... and if you have an extra-fruit option:
Peaches, strawberries, and either raspberries or blackberries



Sat. Sep 20 - Fall Equinox Celebration
3pm - 9pm
with the Banana Slug String Band!

Sat. Oct 26 Halloween Pumpkin Palooza
all day.
the Banana Slug String Band will play here too!

Today's quote from Wendell Berry reminds me that the choices we make on how we grow, produce and choose the food we eat affects the sustainability of our local and regional food web. Our personal choices may often seem insignificant; we wonder how they could possibly make a difference in what today may seem an ever accelerating erosion of human and environmental conditions. However, today over 1000 small farms nationwide have embraced Community Supported Agriculture (CSA). This small but growing movement can inspire us and confirms what Margaret Mead once said: "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." Each CSA is different and unique, but for sure our existence is built and dependent upon this mutually rewarding connection between farmer and consumer. As John Peterson from Angelic Organics in Caledonia, Illinois is quoted saying: "There is something about knowing the people who get the food; the cycle is expanded from seed to final use and it makes farming more vital."

Every CSA member in this country is contributing to this increased vitality and improvement of the health of our food system. This includes economic viability for growers, adequate wages for farm laborers, vitality of rural communities, and proper land stewardship. We hope that, as members of a CSA, the resulting connection between our food, the people and the land will teach us a deeper understanding of the rhythm of the seasons, and the life cycle of the plants from which we prepare meals and receive nourishment. – Tom

Notes from the Field
Since we are currently enjoying a plethora of summer crops – especially tomatoes – you may not want to hear this, but the days are getting shorter and here on the farm it means we are already transitioning and planning for our fall and some winter crops. In the greenhouse we have red and green cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, and kale seedlings, ready to be transplanted. The fields are prepared for sowing rutabaga, and this week we are sowing our last blocks of green beans which won't be harvested until early November. The Warren pear harvest is almost done – we picked almost 20,000 pounds from our two acre block! The pears are stored in our cooler, and will start showing up in the shares first week in September. Next week we should see our first apples in the extra fruit share. These beautiful pink apples are an unusual heirloom variety called "pink pearl." They are fairly tart, the kids always love them and they make the most exquisite pies.

"What's with those red carrots?" You've probably already made up your mind as I have about these carrots. Their strong flavor and somewhat natural bitterness contrasts with the sweetness of our regular orange carrots. I was told they have much more beta-carotene and are a potent antioxidant. In the long term, we will continue to plant our regular orange carrots and less of the reds. I just planted them based on a recommendation from another farmer who likes to mix up the colors.

Yellow hot peppers. This week you will get 1 to 2 hot yellow wax Hungarian peppers, in a bag together with the basil. A word of cau-tion: the "hotness" of these peppers varies – some will be really burning hot, others will be mildly hot. Either way, this is a good time to make some salsa. Enjoy!

Membership Drive
Shares are still available. Please continue to spread the word and let friends, neighbors, co-workers know about our CSA program. We try to always make brochures available in the inside back pocket of your pick-up site binder, so feel free to take a few to give out, or call us and we can send you a flyer to post in your neighborhood's local shop or bulletin board.

Goat Milk
Lynn Selness of Summer Meadows Farm is now offering (very) fresh raw goat's milk, by the quart, in addition to the cheeses she's been making. Milk will be delivered the same way as the cheese – it will be left in a small cooler under an ice pack at your pick-up location. We recommend if you get milk this way that you pick up earlier rather than later, for maximum freshness (Lynn will proba-bly remind you of this when you call her). Goats give naturally homogenized milk – i.e. the milk and cream do not separate. Lynn is offering the milk for $3 a quart, and asks that, if you buy it, to please return the empty jars the following week. – Debbie (PS – she also has a few goats for sale, she says, both male and female. The breed is 'Nubian.' If you are interested, call her at (831) 345-8033.)

Ordering Almonds or Goat Cheese
In both cases, contact the seller directly to place your order and to pay (do not order through Live Earth Farm). We will deliver your order (usually) the following week with your share.

From Anderson Almonds, a certified organic, small, family-owned and operated farm, you can get almonds or almond butter. Almonds are available raw, roasted, or roasted and salted. Almond butter comes in 15 oz. jars. Prices: 5 lbs. almonds + 1 jar almond butter, $32; Almonds only (5 lbs.), $25. Almond butter only, $10, or a 6-pak of jars for $32. A case (25 lbs.) of almonds (raw only) is $120. Contact Mele (rhymes with 'jelly') Anderson at (209) 667-7494 or go to their website at www.andersonalmonds.com.

From Summer Meadows Farm, just across the Pajaro Valley from Live Earth Farm, you can get raw goat milk cheeses (and milk!). Currently available are chevre, ricotta, and a queso blanco. Cheese and/or milk are left in a cooler under an ice pack at your pick-up location (chevre is sometimes delivered frozen but this does not affect quality). Prices: Chevre and ricotta are $6 per half-pound. Queso blanco is available in 5" round 'bricks' about a pound each for $12 (or get a 'half brick' for $6). A quart jar of milk is $3 (please remember to return your empty jar to the cooler at your pick-up site the following week!). Supply is somewhat limited. Contact Lynn Selness at (831) 345-8033 to place an order, then mail a check to Summer Meadows Farm, 405 Webb Road, Watsonville, CA 95076.


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

Friend and fellow member Sue Burnham brought me the first two recipes (she's made and loves both), and the third is from my clippings file. - Debbie.

Potato and Cheese Soufflé
From 'Practical Vegetarian Cookery'. The author says, "This soufflé is very simple to make, yet it has a delicious flavor and melts in the mouth. Choose three alternative cheeses, if preferred."
serves 4 to 6

2 tbsp. butter
2 tsp. all-purpose flour
2 lbs. mealy potatoes (she uses fingerlings)
8 eggs, separated
1/4 C grated Gruyere cheese
1/4 C crumbled bleu cheese
1/4 C grated sharp hard cheese
salt and pepper

1. Butter a 2 1/2 quart soufflé dish and dust with flour. Set aside.
2. Cook the potatoes in a saucepan of boiling water until tender. Mash until very smooth and then transfer to a mixing bowl to cool. 3. Beat the egg yolks into the potato and stir in the cheeses, mixing well. Season to taste with salt and pepper. 4. Whisk the egg whites until standing in peaks, then gently fold them into the potato mixture with a metal spoon until fully incorporated. 5. Spoon the potato mixture into the prepared soufflé dish. 6. Cook in a preheated oven, 425 degrees F, for 35-40 minutes, until risen and set. Serve immediately. Tip: Insert a fine skewer in the center of the soufflé; it should come out clean when the soufflé is fully cooked.

Slow-Cooked Thin-Sliced Summer Squash Showered with Herbs
From 'Local Flavors' by Deborah Madison.
Deborah says, "I could eat summer squash every day, especially when it's cooked like this. Savor these fragrant vegetables by themselves or turn them into a supper by heaping them on garlic-rubbed toasted levain bread with thinly sliced fresh mozarella." (Sue says she has tried this on the bread and proclaims it 'wonderful!')
serves 4 to 6

2 lbs. mixed summer squash
3 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 C simmering water
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1/3 C chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 tbsp. chopped marjoram or oregano or torn basil leaves

Slice the squash 1/4" thick. Heat oil in a wide skillet. Add squash and cook over medium-low heat, flipping squash in the pan every 3 or 4 minutes until it's tender and golden, about 20 minutes. Add the water and continue cooking until none remains. Season with salt and pepper and shower the herbs over all. Slide onto a platter and serve.

Onion Walnut Scones

(see note below about recipe credit!)
makes 8 scones

2 C whole wheat flour (or white, or 1 C ea.) [see caution under 'note' below, about all whole wheat]
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
6 tbsp. cold butter
1 onion, finely minced
1/2 C chopped walnuts
zest of half a lemon
3/4 C buttermilk
2 tbsp. honey

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Mix all of the dry ingredients together in a bowl. Cut the butter into small pieces then cut it into the dry ingredients with a pastry blender until it resembles coarse cornmeal. Mix onions, walnuts and lemon zest into flour. Dissolve the honey in the buttermilk, then stir into flour mixture until just barely combined. Turn the dough onto a floured board and knead 5-7 times, then shape into a round about 1" high. Use a fork to pierce the top surface until it is nicely pebbled. Dust surface lightly with flour, then cut into 8 wedges. Place wedges 1" apart on an ungreased baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes, until lightly browned. Serve warm and pass the butter!

Recipe credit note: Well I was going to include the name of the cookbook and author for this recipe, but when I was proofing it, for a moment I thought I'd left out a key ingredient (the butter) when typing up the paper version. I went back to the source recipe... and it was missing there too! That gave me the heads up to look for other inconsistencies (I'm guessing the original recipe was not tested!) and I found that salt, too, was missing! So I went over the entire recipe and compared it to another scone recipe I'd made successfully several times, and then significantly re-wrote this one with better instructions... as well as the missing ingredients. So the cookbook gets no credit ;-}

Caution: the original recipe called for all whole wheat flour. I am somewhat skeptical of this; I expect it would make for pretty dense scones. I would be more comfortable with some mix of wheat and white flours. Or, use a finer grind of wheat flour (I recently got some whole wheat pastry flour, which is ground much more finely than typical stone ground wheat). If I make this recipe (I haven't yet), I will update this web version of the recipe with anything useful I learned, or at least verify that the recipe is sound (I'm fairly confident of the revise though). On the other hand, if you make this, I'd love to hear from you as to how it went! thanks - Debbie (You can click here to email me.)

*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 key ingredient. Recipe site is updated weekly during the season.