from what's profitable and comfortable
If you drink those liqueurs, you'll spill
The spring water of your real life"
Whats in the standard share:
Veggies and herbs:
Potatoes next week!
... and if you have an extra-fruit option:
Strawberries, peaches, and a bag of apricots and plums
July 30, 31, Aug. 1
Children's Mini-camp, Friday eve. to noon Sun. (see details in Week 15
NOTE: Mini Camp is full for this year. Waiting list only.
Sat. Sept. 25
Fall Equinox Celebration
with the Banana Slug String Band!
Sat. Oct 23rd
Halloween Pumpkin Pallooza
Notes from the field.
The sun is setting, I take a last walk around the farm to make sure all
the water is shut off, check on the goats and make a mental note that
the winter squash is not germinating evenly. I have the suspicion that
the blackbirds and field pigeons I have spotted may be the reason; they
love to peck on germinating seeds. As I walk down the hill through the
golden raspberries, I see the plants are full with green berries. In a
couple of weeks we'll start with the main harvest, and everyone should
be getting a basket in their share. The peaches and apricots glow orange,
red and yellow in the evening light, and like a kid in the candy store
I can't resist biting into one more juicy warm peach before day's end.
Both the Red and Crest Haven peaches are peaking in ripeness right now.
In another two weeks we'll have white peaches, and in early August my
personal favorites the O'Henrys - will make their appearance. This
year the trees are healthy and thanks to the warm weather in March they
set a lot of fruit. The apricots, although they always look a bit rough
and freckled, have a wonderful flavor. We grow Blenheims, which are probably
the best tasting of all apricots. Their season is short, and growing them
near the coast is tricky since they thrive in warmer and drier climates
like Gilroy and Hollister. If anyone has time to can or make jam call
us: over the next few weeks we'll most likely have left-over boxes of
peaches and apricots available for a good price. But where are the tomatoes???
We picked our first three lugs last weekend, and within a couple of weeks
there should be a steady supply for everyone! Tom
of the Week
little later than usual, but we are starting to pick green beans this
week. Green beans are one of our staple crops, grown in succession (planted
every 7 to 10 days, weather permitting). We plant 8 to 10 times, and in
a good year we are still offering them come Thanksgiving! Unlike most
fibrous commercial green beans, the Blue Lake variety we grow is picked
tender, crunchy and slightly sweet. Different from most dried beans (which
require a long, warm growing season), the 'snap' or 'green' beans grow
best in moderate, cooler climates like ours. The green bean is native
to Central America. Fossil seeds found in Mexico date back to 5400 BC.
In the Americas, beans are traditionally grown among the corn, and supposedly
French Huguenot refugees in Britain were the first to grow green beans
in the 1500s, hence the expression "French" bean. Although green
beans are not as high in protein as their dried cousins, they are a good
source of vitamin A and C, as well as dietary fiber. My favorite and simplest
way to prepare them is to steam them a few minutes and toss them with
butter, a little salt, and chopped chives or parsley. Being a legume,
green beans are a great rotation crop, as they allow the soil to rest
in the summer while at the same time generating an economic return. Although
green beans are relatively easy to grow, most farmers in this area avoid
growing them because of the high labor cost involved in picking them.
Commercially grown green beans (the tougher and more fibrous varieties)
are harvested mechanically, and that is why they are cheaper.
Pick-up Protocol Announcement!
that we have a larger diversity of fruit we ask everyone to please
read the pick-up list and only take the quantity and type
of fruit specified beside your name. Please refrain from taking more
(or something different) than has been indicated, since this causes another
member to be short of their allotted amount. Your cooperation will keep
this wonderfully functioning honor system working for all of us.
We can really use your help.
CSA shares are still available, and so we would like to increase membership
if possible. 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.
from Debbies Kitchen . . . . .
. . . Have a recipe youd like to share? Contact
Inundated with basil? Aside from freezing it or making pesto, there are
few dishes that use as much quantity of basil as weve been getting
each week (although I sure as heck hope we get it when the fresh tomatoes
come in....!) Anyway, I was talking to a neighbor this morning, and she
told me how she dries the bounty of basil she gets from her own garden.
So Ill pass on that tidbit, plus (of course!) some green bean recipes
and more. Debbie
Drying fresh basil
My neighbor, with her own backyard garden, passed on her technique for
drying fresh basil (and I am trying it as we speak!): simply pluck the
fresh leaves from the stem (make sure they are dry, not wet) and place
them very loosely in a colander. Place in a warm dry place, and toss the
leaves every day until theyre dry, then crumble and store in a jar.
In a book of mine called "Making and Using Dried Foods" by Phyllis
Hobson, the author says, "Basil leaves must be dried quickly to prevent
mold from forming. To dry outdoors, arrange leaves side by side on trays
and place in a well-ventilated place out of direct sunlight. Dry until
leaves are brittle enough to crumble, about 1 to 2 days."
I think, armed with the above info youll be well on your way to
drying your own basil!
Green Beans with sesame-miso dressing
(from an undated SJ Merc
1 lb. green beans
2 tbsp. white sesame seeds (with hulls), toasted until fragrant in a dry
skillet over medium heat
4 tbsp. red miso
1 1/2 tbsp. sugar
1 tbsp. mirin
Chop or snap beans into 1 3/4" lengths. Cook, covered, in lightly
salted boiling water until barely tender. Rinse in cold water and drain.
Make the dressing: Set your mortar on a damp cloth so that it wont
move while you work. Pour in sesame seeds and grind with the pestle for
a few turns. Dont overgrind; seeds should end up in pieces, not
ground to a powder. Add red miso all at once to sesame and mix with the
pestle. Add the sugar and mirin and mix with the pestle or rubber spatula.
The dressing will be rather coarse in texture. To assemble and serve:
In medium bowl, combine beans and sesame-miso dressing and mix until beans
are well coated. Serve at room temperature in neat mounds in individual
Lemon-Garlic Green Beans
from "Great American Vegetarian"
serves 4 6 as a side dish
Trim 1 pound of green beans and cut or snap them in half. Steam them until
tender-crisp. In a large skillet, heat 1 tbsp. of canola or olive oil
and sauté 1 or 2 cloves of minced garlic over low heat until golden.
Add the steamed beans and sauté, stirring continuously, for just
a minute or so. Re-move from the heat, squeeze on as much fresh lemon
juice as youd like and add a few grindings of black pepper.
Ejotes (Piquante Green Beans)
also from "Great American Vegetarian"
4 to 6 servings
"This nippy preparation of string beans is adapted from the fascinating
book on early Mission cooking of the Southwest, Early California Hospitality
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 lbs. green beans, trimmed and snapped or cut in half
3 medium ripe juicy tomatoes, chopped [Id use canned organic tomatoes
until the fresh ones from the farm come in]
1 - 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and minced
1/4 C water
1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat oil in a large skillet or saucepan. Add onion and sauté over
medium-low heat until translucent. Add garlic and green beans and sauté,
stirring frequently, for 5 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and
simmer, covered, until the green beans are tender. This will take approximately
10 to 20 minutes, depending on their size and thickness. Serve at once.
Sticky Ginger Rice with Peas
adapted from an undated Bon Appetit clipping
1 1/2 C uncooked medium-grain white rice
3 C cold water
1 tbsp. minced fresh ginger
1 C fresh shelled peas
Place rice in a strainer. Rinse under cold water until water runs clear.
Drain well. Transfer rice to a heavy medium saucepan. Add 3 C cold water.
Stir in ginger. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover,
and cook until rice is tender, about 12 minutes. Remove from heat. Sprinkle
peas over rice (do not stir into rice yet). Replace cover and let rest
for 5 minutes or so [this will gently cook the peas, but not too much!].
Gently stir peas into rice. Season rice lightly with salt, transfer to
a bowl and serve.
Plum Fruit Leather
courtesy of Jane Krejci (Jane and Don Krejci were the folks who supplied
us with plums from their Los Gatos orchard a few weeks ago)
Pureé (in Cuisinart) 5 cups of diced, pitted plums. Add 1/4 C honey.
Cover a rimmed cookie sheet with plastic wrap; spread puree thinly. Cover
with cheesecloth or screen and dry in the sun (or place on dash in car).
When dry, roll up and store. [I expect you can probably use this recipe
with other fruit -- apricots, strawberries... give it a try!]
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.