34th Harvest Week Nov. 14th - 20th 2005
Season 10
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“Even the seasons form a great circle in their changing, and always come back again to where they were.”
- Black Elk


What’s in the box this week: (stuff that’s in one size share that’s not in the other is at the top of its respective list so you can easily see the difference. Remember, small shares will generally have smaller quantities of the duplicate items. – Debbie)

Family Share:
Mustard greens
Mystery item (broccoli?)
Purple cauliflower
Green beans
Snow peas
Stirfry-mix of baby chard and red Russian kale
Winter squash (some combo of acorn, butternut & sweet dumpling)

Small Share:
Purple cauliflower
Green beans
Snow peas
Stirfry-mix of baby chard and red Russian kale
Winter squash (some combo of acorn, butternut & sweet dumpling)

Extra Fruit Option:
Strawberries and apples

Last Week of the Season!
Witnessing the seasonal cycles on the farm is to participate in the ebb and flow of the plants and animals we care for and share this wonderful land with. As I mentioned at the end of previous seasons, farming feels more like an act of balance, where the most difficult challenge is to surrender control, in order to allow nature to lead. Nature is the conductor of this great symphony we call Life and we are called upon to play together in harmony. As we come to the end of our season, it is a time of transition, to slow down and let go. As farmers, we learn to make the most of what we have when we have it and to let go of it when the time comes to let go. The orange pumpkins left over from Halloween are still decorating the fire circle and remind me of the strength, growth and nourishing abundance we experienced throughout the season At the same time the withering and dried up mother vines symbolize the inevitable decline and death that follows. This ebb and flow of life energy is continuous every moment of our day. So now we rest; many of our fields are now empty and barren, plowed and sown with cover crop seeds, the fruit trees have lost all their foliage, and the cane berries are pruned and mulched.

There is much to be thankful for as we slow down during the cooler and shorter days of winter. I am especially thankful for everyone who has tirelessly nurtured this farm to be alive and abundant; their commitment is the seed of hope we will plant again at the beginning of next season, carrying the essence of all we accomplished and learned from past seasons. I want to thank every member for your trust and support this season, but more importantly for your commitment to buy, cook and enjoy locally grown food. This humble but important step celebrates a deeper connection with our local environment, with each other as a community, and increases the vitality of our own health.

As we end this, our tenth season, many exciting challenges lie ahead. How can we grow food without depending on vast amounts of non-renewable energy? Some have commented on the large amount of plastic bags we use for packing the shares. I hope that together we can make an increased effort to reduce and recycle plastic next season. I welcome anyone who would like to join us to make that happen. Another important step towards greater sustainability is to increase our renewable energy sources by converting our diesel engines over to run on biodiesel. We will also continue to promote and expand our educational outreach efforts both within the CSA membership as well as with local schools and organizations. Our regular seasonal events and school tours will continue, as well as the permaculture courses which started this year. Although it may seem early to mention, we are already planning to see if our CSA can develop into a year-round program next year (i.e. continue through the winter months) without compromising our focus of running a more sustainable operation.

We extend our wishes of Joy, Love, Peace and Health this winter season and invite you to join and celebrate another abundant and nourishing season with us next year. – Tom

Produce pick-up on the farm during the winter
For those of you who have expressed interest in coming to the farm during the off season to get fresh winter veggies, please call us so we have an idea how much we should harvest. The plan is to have a once-a-week program (Wednesdays from Noon to 6pm) where we will leave the produce in our barn on the packing table; prices will be posted on a chalkboard, and it will be an honor system where you can purchase whatever amount or selection of produce you like.

End of Season message from Lynn 'the goat milk lady'
Summer Meadows Farm gives a huge and heartfelt thanks to all our families and Live Earth Farm for a great year. We appreciate you and your support of our happy goat herd; I’m going to miss all of you! As I fill your bottles, I imagine you enjoying that sweet milk, your children slurping yogurt smoothies; I feel like I’m visiting you each week. We’re in the midst of breeding season now, and before we see you all again we’ll be sharing in the joys of birthing season. So many sweet kids will be coming from January through May. You can come visit! We still have a barn to roof, and the rainy season means lots of mud and pens to keep full of sweet dry straw, so we’ll be busy. Sign up early for next year’s spring milk; again, my supply will be limited, so first come, first served. If you haven’t been my customer before but are interested or curious, give me a call! Lynn Selness, Summer Meadows Farm (831) 786-8966.

Notes from Debbie’s Kitchen . . . . . . . . Have a recipe you’d like to share? Contact Debbie.
Well folks, this is it; last recipes of the season! Let’s go out with a splash of color... purple cauliflower! I experimented with it and am sure you’ll be as pleased as I am with what I learned. – Debbie

Purple Cauliflower

from Debbie’s kitchen

I brought home a head of that beautiful purple cauliflower last week with the express intention of learning what could be done with it. I knew the color would be fine if kept raw, but my greatest fear was that when cooked, it would go grey and unappetizing, the way purple potatoes do. Not so! You’ll definitely want to get the kids involved when playing with this because it is so fun! Steam it, and it goes from the raw pinky-purple color to a dark, royal purple/blue. Add a squeeze of lemon juice to the steamed cauliflower and it transforms back beyond the original color to a bright magenta in a matter of minutes! Boil it in water that has some lemon juice in it, and it pales to lavender, but ends up not far different than its original color. (Check out the updated ‘cauliflower’ picture in the recipe database and see for yourself!) I looked around on the internet and saw that you get the same dark blue/purple color when you roast it too. So here are a couple ideas for how to try it:

- break or cut into florettes. Steam for 5 minutes. Meanwhile make a simple dressing of lemon juice, olive oil, salt, some dried herbs (I used herbs de Provence). When florettes are just cooked (or even after they’ve cooled), toss in a bowl with the dressing and some minced parsley for color. Better yet, slice some carrots and steam them at the same time as the cauliflower. Toss cooked carrots and cauliflower with dressing and serve on a bed of spinach or arugula. Talk about color!

- roasted cauliflower has a truly wonderful flavor. If you haven’t done this yet, now’s your last chance! You can do this with purple cauliflower, regular white cauliflower, or a combo of the two. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Place cauliflower florettes in a plastic bag and add a little olive oil; close up bag and shake to coat (or put florettes in a bowl, drizzle with oil and toss with your hands to coat). Spread florettes on a baking sheet and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in hot oven for 20 – 30 minutes or so, shaking pan occasionally, until nice and browned. Yum! I have heard from more than one source that kids LOVE roasted cauliflower. Heck, you might even try sprinkling with a little lemon juice after roasting, see if it brings up the magenta again.

- of course there’s always plain ol’ raw! Purple cauliflower is wonderfully sweet and nutty, like its white cousin. Cut into slices or small pieces and toss into salads. Put on a platter with other colorful veggies (radishes, raw green beans, carrots) and just eat like a snack; have some mayo handy if you like dipping, or maybe a ranch dressing... any dressing!

I know most of you still have beets in your fridge, so even though we’re not getting them this week, you can raid your stores to make the following recipe!

Chard with Beets, Pine Nuts, Raisins, and Goat Cheese
inspired by a recipe in Bon Appetit

1 bunch chard (or use that bag of chard/kale stir-fry mix!)
2 – 3 medium beets
1 – 2 tbsp. olive oil
half an onion, peeled and chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced or crushed
1 14.5 oz. can chopped tomatoes, drained
¼ tsp. dried red chilies (optional)
¼ C golden raisins
juice from half a lime (or lemon, if you don’t have a lime)
1 tbsp. pine nuts
some fresh goat cheese (chevre)

First, cook the beets. Either wrap in foil and bake at 400 degrees F for about an hour, or cook ‘em about 20 minutes in a pressure cooker [sans foil!]. Test for doneness with a sharp knife; if blade inserts easily, they’re done. When done cooking and cool enough to handle, slice off tops and slip off skins (sometimes running them under a little cool water helps if the skins are being belligerent and not wanting to come off). Dice peeled, cooked beets and set aside.

Toast those pine nuts if you can! They’ll be fine plain, but toasting adds flavor. I spread ‘em on a piece of foil and pop into my toaster oven for about 2 minutes (watch ‘em; they can burn easily!). Alternatively, toast them in a dry skillet over medium heat, shaking constantly, until golden and aromatic. Set aside.

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add baby chard/kale mix and cook just a minute or two; drain and set aside. If the greens are small leave ‘em as is. If they’re bigger, chop the cooked greens after boiling then set aside. [If you’re using regular chard, separate the leaves from the stems, cut leaves up into 1” pieces and boil only a minute then drain. Use stems separately – see brackets next paragr.]

Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat and sauté onion [and chopped chard stems] about 5 minutes; add garlic and optional chilies, cook a minute more, then add tomatoes, raisins and cooked greens; reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until all is tender (oh, 5 – 10 minutes, depending on how low the heat is). Add lime (or lemon) juice and stir to blend. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Transfer cooked greens to a platter (or individual serving plates if you like); sprinkle with diced beets, crumbled chevre, and toasted pine nuts. Scatter with some additional raisins if you like. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Bye for now everyone! I’ll miss you all and miss doing the newsletter and recipes, but fear not, you’ll be hearing from me one way or the other during the off season, and again in February...! Cheers, and have a great Thanksgiving!! – Debbie

*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.