15th Harvest Week July 3rd - 9th, 2006
Season 11
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Civilization is the ego gone to seed and institutionalized in the form of the State.
Gary Snyder, from ‘The Practice of the Wild’


What’s in the box this week: (content differences between Family and Small Shares are underlined/italicized)

Family Share:
Strawberries (1 bskt)
Red beets
3-4 Fennel (small bulbs)
Red Russian kale

Mustard greens
French breakfast radishes
3 summer squash
or 2-3 cucumbers

Small Share:
Strawberries (Thursday only, 1 bskt)
1-2 cucumbers
French breakfast radishes
2 summer squash
Mystery item

Extra Fruit Option:
2 baskets of strawberries and a basket of either blackberries or raspberries



Tues July 18
4 - 9pm
Forum on the Farm: "Integrating Spirituality with Building Sustainable Food Systems"

Aug 25, 26, 27
Children's Mini-camp, Friday eve. to noon Sun.

Sat. Sept. 23
Fall Equinox Celebration
3pm until dark

Sat. Oct 21
Halloween Pumpkin Pallooza

Back from the Wilderness. Debbie's well chosen quote last week (When the cat’s away, the mice will work their little butts off) made me laugh and appreciate the getaway I was able to enjoy with my son and nephew. If there is one aspect of farming that I struggle with, it is that I can't spend much free time with my son during his summer vacation. Going on a river trip through the spectacular canyons cutting through the rugged desert plateau of southeastern Utah was an incredible adventure for us. Being in places where nature is still wild, undomesticated and spared from human cultivation, one is reminded that one's existence is temporary and insignificant in the greater scheme of things. We had the opportunity to visit Mesa Verde National Park in southwestern Colorado where the Anasazi or ancestral Puebloans had evolved into a fairly sophisticated culture. Their sedentary and agricultural lifestyles, however, couldn't be sustained by the rugged and fragile desert environment, forcing them to abandon their cliff dwellings which they had inhabited for hundreds of years. The more we domesticate and cultivate, which is the basic objective of agriculture, the more we end up on the unforgiving razor's edge of nature. I wonder if it is even possible to find a sustainable balance between fields and wilderness; so often we’re caught up in the economics of food production that wilderness is often left out of the equation. On the river I was constantly reminded that I couldn't possibly survive for more than a day; without water, and with temperatures well over 100 degrees,  the river was our lifeline. For 4 days we floated along  a narrow riparian corridor which buffered us from the lifeless almost 1000 foot vertical canyon walls. Over millions of years wind and water has created the most extraordinary canvas of colorful and intricately textured rock formations, sandwiched together one on top of the other. This wilderness, as foreign as it seems, is at the same time nourishing and strengthening. Here on the farm I recognize the importance of our pond, the oak woodlands, and the hedges bordering our fields. They fortify the land, serving as home to many birds, frogs, snakes, bats, deer, rabbits, native plants and beneficial insects. We can't quantify their economic value, although they play an important role in reducing pests. But shouldn't these areas exist anyway? They were here before us. The wilderness is what gave us the fertile and rich environment we now farm. The importance of farming with the wild may be the lesson I learned on this trip. ‘Can we have both wild lands and organically grown food?’ may be the question to solve. The world we live in is nature, and in the long run, always wild. The wild is the very essence and process of nature, impermanent and free. Happy 4th of July, and thank you to all the hardworking "mice" for the opportunity to let me leave the farm for a week! - Tom

Field Notes from Farmer Tom
Coming up next week we'll have a nice crop of tender green beans, plus freshly dug potatoes, and the fruit shares should see more blackberries and raspberries, with stone fruit coming in the near future.

Mini Camp!
This year it starts Friday evening August 25th with a pot-luck (pot-luck will start at around 7pm) and ends Sunday 27th before lunch. What is Mini Camp? Since 1999, CSA members and their children have come to join us for a weekend "camping" stay at the farm. This yearly event is designed so participants can experience the farm's peacefulness without the concern of having to drive at the end of the day. Equipped with baskets, we spend our days harvesting, tasting and discovering the magnificent diversity of fruits, vegetables and herbs growing on the farm, and then prepare a meal from the bounty we harvested. This process is at the same time ambitious and fun, compelling everyone to explore all corners of the land. It is a time to enjoy being together, to meet other CSA members, and to allow the children to set the pace. Farm games such as finding the 'weirdest' most interesting, bizarre-looking fruit or vegetable are popular, and so is pizza-making (in our wood-fired oven) with freshly harvested crops. Our hide-and-seek by moonlight in the orchard has become a tradition among mini-campers! Visits to the farm animals (chickens, goats and our pony, "Peanut") are also a must, to make sure that no living creature is left out of the party! Families and kids of all ages are welcome!!

<> Cost is $40 per person (adults and children), to a maximum of $120 per family, and you can pay during mini-camp.

<> You need to have been a CSA member for at least 2 months to participate, and because space is limited, we only can allow CSA members and their children, but not extended family members.

Sign up now, as space in this popular event is limited to 12 families! Contact Constance at broz@baymoon.com or call 831.760.0435 to register, and she will give you the remaining specifics on what to bring/what to expect, etc.

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

Strawberry Muffins
this was a solstice recipe, but no member name was written on it, so I don't know who to credit this to!

Dry ingredients:
2 C flour
1 ½ C uncooked rolled oats
¾ C sugar
3 ½ tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. ground cinnamon
Wet ingredients:
1 ½ C milk or soymilk
¾ C butter or soy butter, melted
2 eggs, beaten
1 ½ tsp. vanilla
2 C chopped fresh strawberries!

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease or line 18 regular-size muffin cups. Mix wet and dry ingredients separately, then combine just until all is moistened (do not overmix). Gently fold in strawberries. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups, filling until almost full. Bake 15 – 17 minutes or until toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean. Remove from pans and cool 10 minutes on wire racks.

Lemon and Basil shortbread
from March 2006 sunset magazine, modified
1 C butter, room temperature
½ C sugar
1 tsp. grated lemon peel
1 tbsp. lemon juice
2 ½ C flour
6 tbsp. cornstarch
1 tbsp. minced fresh basil leaves

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. In a food processor, whirl all ingredients until smooth. Press dough into two 8-inch cake pans with removable rims [or just pat the dough out into two evenly thick circles a cookie sheet like I do; I don’t have the fancy pans]. Pierce dough all over with the tines of a fork, and (optionally) press tines of fork gently all around the perimeter to make a pattern. Bake until firm to the touch and slightly browned, about 45 minutes. Sprinkle hot rounds with 1 tbsp. sugar each [I’d say this is optional too], remove pan rims, if using, and while still warm, cut each circle into wedges [you won’t be able to do this once they’ve cooled!]. Cool completely while still on pan bottoms (or cookie sheets) set on a rack, then separate wedges and serve or store airtight up to 1 week.

Beet, chickpea and almond dip
from an undated Bon Appetit clipping

1 large (8 oz.) [or a few small] beet[s], peeled and cut into ¾” cubes
1 C drained canned garbanzos (chickpeas)
¾ C olive oil
¼ C slivered almonds
5 garlic cloves, peeled
1 ½ tbsp. (or more) red wine vinegar

Cook beets in medium saucepan of boiling salted water until tender, about 12 minutes. Drain; place in a food processor. Add garbanzo beans, oil, almonds and garlic, and blend until smooth. Add vinegar and blend again, then season to taste with salt, pepper and additional vinegar, if desired. Serve with pita chips* or veggies for dipping.
*These can be made by cutting pitas into wedges, brushing lightly with oil and sprinkling with a little salt and pepper, and baking on a cookie sheet, 400 degrees, until brown and crisp (approx. 12 minutes).

Frittata with bacon, ricotta & greens
serves 6

from an undated Bon Appetit clipping, modified

12 oz. bacon, cut into ½ - ¾ inch pieces
1 C sliced shallots [or garlic or onion]
12 C packed assorted coarsely chopped greens (such as kale, chard or mustards)
12 lg. eggs
½ tsp. salt
1 C freshly grated parmesan, divided
12 oz. fresh ricotta (about 1 ¾ C)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook bacon in 12” diameter ovenproof skillet until crisp. Drain on paper towels, but leave about 2 tbsp. of the fat in skillet (save the rest for later in the recipe!), and sauté shallots in this until golden, about 4 minutes. Add half the greens and toss until beginning to wilt, about a minute, then add rest of greens and sauté until wilted, tender, and dry, about 15 minutes. Remove all to a dish to cool, and clean your skillet. Beat eggs and salt to blend in a large bowl. Whisk in ¾ C of the parmesan, then greens and half the bacon. Stir in ricotta, leaving some clumps. Heat 1 tbsp. of reserved bacon drippings in cleaned skillet over medium heat. Pour in egg mixture; spread greens evenly. Sprinkle remaining bacon and ¼ C parmesan over eggs. Cook until frittata is just set at the edges, about 10 minutes. Transfer to oven and bake until just set, about 20 minutes. Cut around frittata to loosen; slide out onto a platter. Let cool 30 minutes. Slice into wedges and serve.

Curried red lentil and Swiss chard stew with garbanzo beans
yet another Bon Appetit clipping, modified

serves 6
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 lg. onion, thinly sliced
5 tsp. curry powder
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper’
3 14-oz cans vegetable broth
1 lg. bunch chard, stems removed, coarsely chopped (about 12 C)
1 lb. red lentils (about 2 ¼ C)
1 15-oz. can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained

Plain yogurt

In a large heavy saucepan, sauté onion in oil about 13 minutes, mix in curry and cayenne. Add broth and chard, bring to a boil, add lentils and garbanzos. Reduce to medium and cover; simmer about 10 minutes until lentils are tender, stirring twice. Divide stew among bowls and top with yogurt.

*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.