29th Harvest Week October 22nd - 28th, 2003
Season 8
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"Those who contemplate the beauty of the Earth, find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts."
- Rachel Carson


What’s in the standard share:

Warren pears
Pineapple guavas

Veggies and herbs:
Baby chiogga beets
Red Russian kale
Red lettuce
Summer squash

... and if you have an extra-fruit option:
Strawberries, apples and pears



Sat. Oct 25th
Pumpkin Palooza
Noon to 5 or so...
the Banana Slug String Band will play 2-4pm

We always seek to find inspiration and search for small fountains of hope that fuel our lives. Last Friday I attended a gathering which did just that. It is called the Bioneers Conference. This gathering has been happening the last 14 years here in the Bay Area and brings together an amazing group of people of all walks of life. Not only does this gathering identify the urgent ecological and social challenges facing the earth and its living communities but most importantly, it shows how everyday people are helping the planet. There is nothing more refreshing to experience, in these times of escalating violence and destruction, than a gathering of people who remind us that the solutions already exist for many of our most pressing challenges, and who demonstrate just how great a difference one person can make. Coming back from the conference I felt encouraged about our Live Earth Farm Community and the fact that people all across the country are supporting more ecological food systems by buying fresh, local, seasonal food from small organic farmers. I see Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farms as small alliances which offer a practical and tangible way for members and farmers to know each other and join together in taking care of the land. When I write this I almost feel I am preaching to the choir since most of you care deeply about the well being of the earth, and believe that long-term human and ecological needs – like health, relationships, community, personal responsibility, healthy ecosystems, fair and rewarding work (the list goes on) – are more important than money.

As I left the conference on Friday night the one thing that struck me was the sense of community, the joining of individual efforts and knowledge to seek ways to unite nature, culture and spirit in an Earth-honoring vision. There are people all over the world who are joining together to support that vision. Although this seems like one more thing to add to your busy lives, I hope to form a group of people within our community to define how Live Earth Farm can better serve as a place to promote restorative and traditional farming practices, on-farm education, health and nutrition, and opportunities to enhance cultural and spiritual connections with the natural world. If you are interested and have ideas to help the farm in this direction please contact me (831)-763-2448 or e-mail farmers@cruzio.com. – Tom

What's Up on the Farm
PUMPKIN PALOOZA !!! This Saturday Oct. 25th starting at Noon you are welcome to pick up your pumpkins here at the farm. Although we won't have scheduled activities, the Banana Slug String Band will be here, to inspire us with songs and games between 2 and 4pm, so you may want to schedule your visit around that time. We'll be pressing apples into fresh cider and just enjoying each others' company as we draw to the end of the season. Each family gets one free medium-sized pumpkin, and you can also purchase more if you like. The prices will vary according to weight, but most will be between $2 and $4. If you cannot pick a pumpkin this Saturday, you are welcome to drop by the farm anytime before or after this date – even after Halloween if there are any left! You are not limited to the 25th. Unfortunately, we simply cannot deliver them with your share because our delivery truck is not big enough to fit all the shares, all the extra fruit, the buckets of flowers AND pumpkins! I hope you can all make it to the farm.

Crop Notes
In the box this week you will find some strange looking green oval fruit. These are pineapple guavas, also known as "Feijoas." They grow as dense shrubs or small trees next to our fields and are brothers to the round, yellow tropical guavas we find in Hawaii. Their aromatic flowers and fruit are both edible and taste a little like pineapple. Keep them at room temperature, and don’t peel, since the rind is also edible and contains high levels of vitamin C (but if you decide the rind is too tough for your taste, just cut it in half and spoon out and eat the juicier flesh inside).

Ordering Almonds or Goat Cheese

Almonds from Anderson Almonds are currently not available through the CSA as they are busy with the fall harvest. See their website www.andersonalmonds.com for the latest info.

From Summer Meadows Farm, just across the Pajaro Valley from Live Earth Farm, you can get raw goat milk cheeses, milk and now yogurt! Cheeses are chevre, ricotta, and a queso blanco (made with vegetable rennett). Milk and yogurt are by the quart. Yogurt is cultured with acidophilus. Your cheese, milk and/or yogurt orders 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 of milk is $3, and a quart of yogurt is $4 (please remember to return empty jars to the cooler at your pick-up site the following week! Lynn re-uses them). 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.

I think it is time for some fruit recipes! First off I'd like to repeat a blurb on pineapple guavas I wrote last year, as we only see them for a very short time (I'll try to get pictures of them this week to post to the recipe database). Following that, something for pears, and then, oh I suppose a veggie recipe or two will fit the space remaining! - Debbie

How to eat Pineapple Guavas
by yours truly (from last year)

Being observant pays off. Those odd little green fruit were an enigma to me until I watched Tom at the Willow Glen farmers market last Saturday as he chatted up customers and snacked on pineapple guavas. What he would do is pick one up, squeeze and roll it a little between his fingers to soften it a bit, then break the skin slightly with a thumbnail and pinch the fruit in half, like opening a cracked egg. Then he'd just bite into the fruit, skin and all, only tossing the very stem end. I studiously attempted to repeat this at home and... it worked! Somehow it was the tastiest way to eat them, better than cutting or slicing. I don't know why. All I do know is that they are disappearing from my fruit basket rapidly now that I know how to eat them...

Pear Tart
from "Tomato Blessings and Radish Teachings" by Edward Espe Brown
Makes one 9-inch tart

Ed says, "A crumble topping underneath the pears soaks up their juices."

Tart Dough with Lemon Peel (see below)
2 tbsp. sweet butter
2 tbsp. white sugar
1/4 C flour
1/8 tsp. cardamom
1/8 tsp. anise seeds
2 to 3 good-size pears (more if small)

Make tart dough and press it into a 9" tart pan as instructed but do not prebake. Cut the butter and sugar into the flour along with the spices. Distribute over the tart dough. (Peel and) quarter the pears, core them, and then cut into diagonal slices. Arrange them decoratively in the tart pan, fanning them out or placing them in concentric circles starting from the outside, or you figure it out. If you wish, sprinkle just a little sugar on top. Bake in a 375- to 400-degree oven about 35 to 40 minutes, or until the sides of the tart are nicely browned and the pears are tender.

Tart Dough with Lemon Peel
1 tsp. grated lemon peel
1 C unbleached white flour
1/4 C whole-wheat flour
pinch of salt
2 tbsp. white sugar
1/2 C unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. water

Combine grated peel with the flours, salt, and sugar, and then cut in the butter with 2 knives or a pastry cutter until a fine meal is formed (a food processor may be used for this by pulsing).

Creamy Cauliflower and Penne
from "Your Organic Kitchen" by Jesse Cool
Makes 6 servings

Jesse says, "Cauliflower is a favorite of mine, and in this recipe, it takes the place of meat. I like cauliflower cooked all ways, but I am especially fond of it cooked as my mother did -- until it is soft, creamy and sweet."

1 cauliflower head, cut into florets
1 lb. penne pasta
1/3 C extra virgin olive oil
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/2 C dry white wine
1 1/2 tbsp. chopped fresh oregano
1/4 C kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
4 fresh parsley sprigs, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 C (1 oz.) shredded Asiago or Parmesan cheese

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil over high heat. Add the cauliflower and cook for 5 minutes, or until tender. Remove with a slotted spoon to a medium bowl, reserving the water. Cook the pasta according to package directions in the reserved water. Drain and place in a large serving bowl. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cauliflower and cook for 5 minutes, stirring and breaking the cauliflower into bite-size pieces. Add the wine, oregano, olives, and red-pepper flakes and cook for 3 minutes, or until the cauliflower is very tender. Add the parsley and season with the salt and black pepper. Pour over the pasta and toss to coat well. Top with cheese.

Greens for breakfast!
by guess who? ;-)

Why not get that vitamin/mineral boost first thing in the morning? Why wait for dinner to eat your greens? - Debbie

kale, collards or other dark leafy greens
fish sauce (Nam Pla)
some oil for cooking
(if you like garlic, you could add a crushed clove when you sizzle the scallions)

Wash greens, strip from stems. Cook in boiling salted water a few minutes until tender, drain and wait 'til cool enough to handle (or run 'em under cold water). While waiting for greens to cool, chop up a few scallions, including tops. In a bowl, whisk a few eggs with fish sauce (roughly 1/4 tsp. per egg). Squeeze as much water from the greens as you can, then place on a cutting board and chop up. Heat oil in a skillet until hot, sizzle scallions half a minute, add eggs and scramble. When eggs are nearly done, mix in the greens and cook together until done. Great with a side of toast!

*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.