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Live Earth Farm (Com)Post
29th Harvest Week, Season 17
October 15th - 21st, 2012
in this issue
What's in the box(es) this week
Memorable Barn Celebration at Live Earth Farm
Fall Harvest Celebration this Saturday! C'mon Down to our 17th Annual Harvest Celebration!
Heads Up: our 2012-13 Winter CSA is already half full
In the Fields...
Discovery Program Update
Rebecca's Recipes
2012 Calendar

" Food is music to the body, music is food for the heart."
- Gregory David Roberts (heard on NPR)

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What's in the box(es) this week

Occasionally content will differ from this list (typically we make a substitution), but we do our best to give you an accurate projection.


Quantities of certain items will be more in the larger shares. Delicate items which are part of your share, like strawberries, are packed outside your box. Quantity to take will be spelled out next to your name on the checklist at your pick-up site. 


For any items not from our farm, we will identify the source in parentheses.


***Click here for a picture of how to tell share sizes apart at your pick-up site***


Family (Large) Share
Fuji apples (will be inside your box)
Green beans
Daikon radish
Sweet peppers
Dry-farmed tomatoes
Winter squash (Delicata)

Regular (Medium) Share
Fuji apples (will be inside your box)
Red radishes
Sweet peppers
Dry-farmed tomatoes
Winter squash (Delicata)

Budget (Small) Share
Fuji apples (will be inside your box)
Green beans
Sweet peppers
Dry-farmed tomatoes
Winter squash (Delicata)

Bread Option
This week's bread will be plain whole wheat

Extra Fruit Option
Apples and pears, Concord grapes, and strawberries or pineapple guavas   


  pineapple guavas  

Pineapple guavas on the bush  


Memorable Barn Celebration at Live Earth Farm
Edible Monterey's 1st Anniversary Celebration at LEF Most barns have multiple functions; our redwood barn is no exception. Always abuzz with activity, it is the hub of the farm, where daily harvests are brought in from the fields to be sorted, washed, packed and cooled. It is where all our CSA shares, market loads, webstore and wholesale orders are packed, organized, and loaded for delivery. New this year, the barn now hosts a farmstand where folks in our community can pick up farm fresh produce on weekends. It is a place to store dry goods and farm supplies, where people gather for work, and a point from which visitors embark to explore the farm. And as was the case last Saturday -- the barn even transforms into a destination: a host venue for community celebrations. So on Friday after a very busy work week, everyone pitched in to give the barn a thorough cleaning in order to welcome "Edible Monterey" for its 1st year anniversary celebration. Edible Monterey, a locally owned and managed magazine, is part of the Edible Communities Publications found throughout North America, and does a wonderful job of featuring our region's (San Benito, Santa Cruz and Monterey counties) food culture. Each quarterly publication reflects the seasonal highlights of our unique and very diverse Monterey Bay foodshed. Every article is captivatingly informative, with amazing pictures, telling the stories of food artisans, farmers, fishermen, chefs, and community based food producers. The magazine helps raise awareness of where our food comes from, and shares Live Earth Farm's values of promoting affordable, fresh, healthful food, while building community and nourishing relationships within the region.

Brad Briske, the chef at Carmel's Casanova Restaurant and an expert on all the locally grown ingredients available here on the Central Coast, had a mouth watering 5 course menu. Brad enjoyed the unique support of four local organizations that offer vocational training in sustainable agriculture and culinary arts to at-risk youth: Food What?!, Lightfoot Industries, Pie Ranch, and the Santa Cruz Regional Occupational Program. They all played an instrumental role helping him. They prepared desserts and appetizers, served guests, and did the cleaning and breaking down after the event was over. Other producers and farms who contributed to the event were Heller Estate Organic Vineyards, Equinox Champagne Cellars, Storrs Winery, 3 of a Kind, Baker's Bacon, Fogline Farm, Live Earth Farm and Serendipity Farms. And adding a subtle, magical touch to the entire event was the music provided by husband and wife duo Anne and Pete Sibley, winners of the Great American Duet Sing-off on "A Prairie Home Companion," -- they delighted us with their folk and bluegrass tunes accompanied by guitar and banjo.
LEF's beautiful redwood barn, Juan on tractor in foreground I love this beautiful barn, a gathering place for honoring the many relationships nurtured by the land we are fortunate to steward. Whenever you visit the farm, be sure to visit our Barn! Maybe a good time would be this Saturday, as we invite you to join us for the last celebration of a busy harvest season.

- Tom  

Fall Harvest Celebration this Saturday! C'mon Down to our 17th Annual Harvest Celebration!

This year we need a few volunteers to help with the Harvest Fest.  Please call me (831-760-0436) or e-mail thomas@baymoon.com if you can lend  a hand, even if it's only for a short time, whether it's helping with setting up, apple pressing, apple u-pick, pumpkin picking and carving, baking in the cob oven, music, face painting, etc, YOUR HELP is GREATLY APPRECIATED!

pumpkins on straw bales

Event Details

this Saturday, Oct 20th
2pm until dark

<> For the Celebration, come to the 'upper farm' (172 Litchfield Lane entrance)
<> For the Apple U-pick, 10AM-5PM (see instructions below), go to the 'lower farm' (1275 Green Valley Road) and follow signs for parking
(the two locations are connected, so you can park at either spot and walk between them, just be aware there's a steep hill in-between!)
Click here for directions

No cost - just bring something to share in the pot-luck! (And cash for the donations box if you pick apples or extra pumpkins)

Schedule of Events:
Ongoing Activities: 2pm on
<> Apple U-pick - Please follow signs to Fuji orchards when you come in the driveway at our 1275 Green Valley address. Pick a bag or a bushel then come join us at the 'upper farm' for the rest of the celebration!
<> Apple Cider Pressing - by the fire circle
<> Face Painting
<> Pumpkin Harvesting
<> Pumpkin Carving
<> Apple bobbing contest
<> Farm Tour with Farmer Tom! 
<> Warm Apple Focaccia Bread Making - at the cob oven
<> Potato Sack Races for kids of all ages! 
<> 5:30pm - Potluck dinner, Music, and Bonfire

We encourage you to bring your own plates, bowls, forks, spoons, cloth napkins... even cups for cider, in order to minimize the un-recyclable waste of paper plates and plastic utensils and such going into the landfill. Thanks! OH, and don't forget a serving utensil for your pot-luck item!

What to bring:
<> Above-mentioned plates, utensils, cups etc for pot-luck
<> A dish of some sort to share in the pot-luck (don't forget to bring a serving utensil! Please also bring a card or note with ingredients if not obvious, so people with food allergies will know what they can and cannot eat)
<> A blanket to spread on the ground to picnic on
<> Hats, jackets, sweaters, etc - it gets cool in the evening!
<> A flashlight, if you plan on staying until dark

In year's past we had a Pie Contest which will NOT take place this year, however, I (Farmer Tom) for one will make a pie and we will have a separate specially-decorated table just for our creative pie baking enthusiasts.

- Tom  

Heads Up: our 2012-13 Winter CSA is already half full
Make sure to Sign up! We've had a wonderful early response by so many of our members, I appreciate your commitment, it makes all the difference in the world, to know Live Earth Farm can count on its continued community support.

Here's the signup link if you want to go there now.

- Tom  

In the Fields...
Delicata squash Fall is here, a time when Fuji apples are being harvested (come and pick your own this Saturday). Bins of winter squash are being hauled in from the fields as well -- the first type to go in your shares this week are the striped Delicata (pictured at right).  With warm weather returning this week we may have an extended harvest of our summer favorites, but I have a feeling we are seeing the tail end of them, maybe another 3-4 weeks at the most. Right now next year's strawberry beds are being shaped, first cover crops are being sown and the pumpkins are orange and ready for carving.

- Tom  

Discovery Program Update  LEFDP logo
We of the LEF Discovery Program have been busy in the fields and off site this fall.  We are in the heart of our fall tour season, and have about two tours a week with schools mostly from Watsonville.  We are hosting a lot of third graders this year, which is new.  We are glad our Applemania tour is so appealing to their teachers.  Grace is doing a great job with these visits and managing a lot more.

We are building a new group of homeschool families, who will visit the farm every fourth Wednesday of the month.  On October 24th we will pick and press apples and work in the Discovery Garden and fields weeding, harvesting and prepping beds for winter crops.  Please get in touch if you are interested in joining this program.

Last week we hosted fun educational tables at three events: The Independent Marketplace, The Staff of Life Harvest Festival, and The Santa Cruz Montessori Ice Cream Social.  We decorated a lot of pumpkins, pressed gallons of juice, and connected with many families new and known.

This weekend we are looking forward to the Harvest Celebration, where we will be launching our new Discovery Program Newsletter (you can sign up to receive it on our new website in the bottom left corner of every page).  We will also be painting faces and pumpkins, bobbing for and pressing apples, sharing a potluck and bonfire, and sipping Uncommon Brewers seasonal Casserly Pale Ale.  Also on "tap" join us next Thank you Thursday October 25th at Santa Cruz Mountain Brewing where a $1 of every pint sold all day long will benefit LEFDP!  Tom and the LEF crew will be there in the evening to enjoy each other's and hopefully YOUR company!

Jessica Ridgeway, Director - LEFDPDirector@gmail.com or
Grace Chollar-Webb, Program Coordinator - LEFDPeducation@gmail.com
Live Earth Farm Discovery Program
Seed to Mouth, Farm to Fork, Child to Community Connections

Childrens' painted pumpkins
Rebecca's Recipes
Click here to go to Debbie's recipe database. Rebecca's recipes will be included in the database as well. [What happened to "Notes from Debbie's Kitchen?"]  


Greeting to everyone! Aahhh... this Autumn weather is so hypnotic, with the changing colors, crisp, clear air and amazing wispy clouds. I hope you all are continuing to enjoy all the wonderful produce we are getting! I find it so inspiring to open my box each week and begin to plan what delights to create. Sharing recipes has been such a joy as well; I do hope you are able to use and are having fun with them! I would also like to take a moment offer my huge GRATITUDE to Debbie for guiding me with this recipe column. She organizes my sometimes garbled recipes so they make sense for you. Debbie, you are awesome THANK YOU for your patience, kindness, and brilliance every step of the way. You make it possible for me to share what I so passionately love to do. [Aw, shucks, 'tain't nuthin! - Debbie] So cook, eat, enjoy health and delight in all this CSA goodness... Sweet week to all with blessings, Rebecca [email Rebecca]

[Rebecca Mastoris is a chef/teacher at Bauman College, and a partner in Vibrant Foods Catering along with Karen Haralson. Both Karen and Rebecca teach cooking classes at the farm and in town locally - see our 2012 Calendar, below.]
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 

4 servings, about 3/4 cup each

Delicata squash is milder and not as sweet as other winter squash. It pairs well with hearty winter dishes. It has a thin skin so there is no need to peel it (you can eat the peel). It is a great source of beta-carotene -- the same compound the body converts to vitamin A, essential for healthy skin, vision, and a strong  immune system. Try it roasted with red onion and aromatic rosemary or juicy pears and a dash of chili powder. It steams up beautifully, too. It is simple and festive tossed with dried fruit and toasted nuts. Or saute thin slices with orange juice and a sprinkling of pistachios.

1 pound delicata squash (about 1 large)
2 medium-sized ripe but firm pears, sliced
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 slices bacon (optional)
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon chili powder

1. preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
2. Cut squash in half lengthwise; scoop out seeds. Cut crosswise into 1/4 inch slices. Toss in a large bowl with pear slices, oil, salt, and pepper. Spread on a baking sheet.
3. Roast squash and pears until just tender, stirring once or twice, 20-25 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, cook bacon (if using) in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp, about 4-6 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate.
5. Discard all but 2 teaspoons of fat from pan. If not using bacon, add 2 teaspoons of olive oil to pan and continue. Over medium heat, stir in water, brown sugar, and chili powder. Add the squash and pears; toss to coat. Crumble bacon on top.
[Yum... this sounds delish, Rebecca! - Debbie]

Yields 16 squares

You will love how simple these are to make! The dough does double-duty as the crust and streusel topping. Try topped with cinnamon ice cream.
1/2 cup flour of choice (I use brown rice flour to make it gluten-free)
1 cup old-fashioned oats (Bob's Red Mill has gluten-free oats)
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (using fresh nutmeg makes a huge difference in taste!)
3 tablespoons oil of choice
1/4 cup apple juice  concentrate, thawed
2 medium apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
1/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 9-inch square pan with oil (I like to use coconut oil).
2. Combine flour, oats, brown sugar, lemon zest, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a large bowl. Work in oil and apple juice concentrate with your fingers until coarse crumbs form.
3 Press 2 cups of the oat mixture into a prepared pan. Arrange apples over crust in three rows. Mix walnuts into remaining oat mixture to form streusel topping; spread evenly over apples and pat down firmly.
4. Bake until top is golden brown and apples are tender when pierced with a sharp knife, 30-35 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack before cutting into squares.

Serves 4

This is a Moroccan dish that Karen and I used in a class we taught last week. Thank you, Karen, for such an amazing dish! If you don't have preserved lemon, just add a little lemon juice, about 1 tablespoon.

large bunch of flat leaf parsley
large bunch of fresh mint
large bunch of arugula
large bunch of spinach
3-4 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves (divided)
1 red chili
1/2 preserved lemon
sea salt and pepper to taste
2-4 tablespoons Greek yogurt

1. Roughly chop herbs, arugula, and spinach.
2. Seed and finely chop chili.
3. Peel and mince one clove of garlic.
4. Crush the other clove of garlic into yogurt and stir. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
5. Heat oil in a wide, heavy pan. Stir in minced garlic and chili and cook until they begin to color.
6. Toss in herbs and greens and saute gently, until they begin to soften and wilt.
7. Add the preserved lemon and season to taste.
8. Serve the salad warm with a dollop of garlic-flavored yogurt on top.

Serves 4

7 raw beets, unpeeled
1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
1/2 teaspoon zested orange rind
1 tablespoon orange juice
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons walnut oil
sea salt and black pepper to taste
12 ounces rigatoni
3 cups arugula
1 cup Dolcelatte or Gorgonzola cheese, cut into small cubes

1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Wrap beets individually in parchment paper then aluminum foil and roast for 1-1/2 hours or until tender. Test them by opening one of the parcels and scraping the skin away from the stem end - it should come away easily.
2. Let beets rest until cool enough to handle, then peel and cut each beet into 6 to 8 wedges, depending on the size. Combine the garlic, orange zest and juice, lemon juice, walnut oil, and salt and pepper together and drizzle over beets and toss well to coat.
3. Meanwhile, bring a large saucepan of slightly salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta for 10 minutes, or until cooked but firm.
4. Drain the pasta thoroughly. Add the warm beets, arugula, and cheese. Quickly and gently toss together, then divide between serving bowls and serve immediately before the arugula wilts.

Serves 4

1 bunch baby leeks
2 medium-sized firm, ripe tomatoes
2 shallots, peeled and cut into thin wedges

For honey-lime dressing:
2 tablespoons honey
grated rind of 1 lime
4 tablespoons lime juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
sea salt and pepper to taste
freshly chopped tarragon and freshly chopped basil to garnish

1. Wash and then trim leeks so they are same length. Place in a steamer over a pan of boiling water and steam for 8 minutes, or until just tender. Drain leeks thoroughly and arrange in a shallow rectangular dish.
2. Peel tomatoes: Cut an "X" in the top the tomatoes, place in a bowl and cover them with boiling water until their skins start to peel away. Remove tomatoes from bowl and carefully remove skins. [Another way to do this is to have a pot of water boiling on the stove, drop the "X'd" tomatoes in and watch carefully for the first signs of the skin splitting (the "X" is to promote the splitting). As soon as splitting begins, pluck them out of the pot and drop them into a bowl of ice water until cool enough to handle. The skins should slip off easily. - Debbie]
3. Cut the peeled tomatoes into quarters, remove seeds, then chop into cubes. Distribute chopped tomatoes and the shallots over the top of leeks.
4. In a small bowl make the dressing by whisking together honey, lime zest, lime juice, olive oil, mustard, and salt and pepper. Pour 3 tablespoons of this over the leeks and tomatoes and then garnish with tarragon and basil. Serve while the the leeks are still warm, with the remaining dressing on the side for those who want more.

Serves 4-6

2 sweet peppers
olive oil for the peppers
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon capers
12 olives - Kalamata, Nicoise or Gaeta
3 scallions, white parts with some green, finely sliced
1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon marjoram, chopped
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Balsamic vinegar to taste
sea salt and pepper to taste
1 bunch broccolini

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Halve peppers lengthwise, remove veins and seeds, then brush all sides with olive oil. Set them on a baking tray skin side up and bake until skins are wrinkled and lightly colored. When cool enough to handle, scrape off the skins. Slice peppers into strips roughly 1/2 inch wide, and mix them with olive oil, capers, olives, scallions, parsley, marjoram, red pepper flakes, adding balsamic vinegar to taste. Season with salt.
2. Bring 3 quarts of water to a boil. While it is heating, trim broccolini stalks as needed by cutting off the tough ends. When the water is boiling, add a teaspoon of salt and cook the broccolini in 2 to 3 separate batches for about 30 seconds, to just blanch. Scoop out each batch and set in a colander or on a tea towel to drain.
3. Combine the broccolini with the rest of the ingredients and toss together. Taste for salt, add more oil or vinegar if needed, and a grinding of black pepper. If you don't plan to serve the salad right away, wait to add the final vinegar until just before serving to prevent colors from fading.
Variations: Use lemon juice and finely slivered lemon peel instead of vinegar. Sun-dried tomatoes, thinly sliced into strips, may also be added to this dish.
Calendar2012 2012 CALENDAR
Visit our website's events calendar for details.

LEF Discovery Program 4th Annual Fundraiser - "Dig!"
Sept 22nd, 4 - 8pm - click here for more info and to buy tickets

LEF Discovery Program "Wee Ones"
3rd Tuesday of every month, 10:30am - Noon [Apr-Nov, weather permitting]
($10 - $15 per family)
Mothers, fathers, grandparents, caretakers of any kind... bring the babe in your arms [0-3yrs] to experience the diversity of our beautiful organic farm here in Watsonville. We will use our five senses to get to know the natural world around us. The farm is home to over 50 different fruits and vegetables, chicks, chickens, goats, and the many wild members of the Pajaro watershed. RSVP requested.

LEFDP office: (831) 728-2032 or email lefeducation@baymoon.com.

LEF Discovery Program "Small Farmers" 
2nd Wednesday of every month, 10:30am - Noon [Apr-Nov, weather permitting]
($10 - $15 per family)
Similar to our Wee Ones program, above, only designed for 3-6 year olds. 

LEF Discovery Program "Art at the Farm" Summer Camp!
Enroll your child in an art and adventure-filled week-long day camp at Live Earth Farm. Designed for kids age 6-12 yrs. Is your child 13 or older yet interested in getting involved? They may be a candidate for becoming a Leader in Training! Click here for all camp details on our website. (note that if Firefox is your browser, this link behaves oddly and you may need to scroll up on the page to locate the 'Art on the Farm' details.)
Session 1: June 18-22
Session 2: July 16-20

Community Farm Days and Events

We've set aside the dates (so you should too!), and will fill you in on what we're going to do as their time draws nearer. Stay tuned!

Apr 28 - cancelled
May 26 - Strawberries!
July 28 - From Seed to Loaf
Aug 25 - Totally Tomatoes
Sep 29 - Apple U-pick and Cider Pressing (combined with Oct 20 Harvest Celebration)     



As anyone who's attended them in the past will tell you, our farm celebrations are not to be missed! Chock full of activities, farm tours, music, always a pot-luck and bonfire... bring the entire family and enjoy!

<> June 16 - Summer Solstice Celebration (click here for a youtube video of 2009's!)
<> October 20 - Fall Harvest Celebration

Happy Girl Kitchen Workshops at LEF

All workshops include an organic lunch, as well as take-home items from what is made that day -- these workshops are not to be missed!

Apr 15 - Cheesemaking
May 20 - Whole Foods workshop with Stephanie Stein
Jun 9 [Sat] - Cherries & Apricots
Jun 10 [Sun] - Cherries & Apricots    

Jul 28 [Sat] - Pickles!
Jul 29 [Sun] - Pickles!
Aug 11 [Sat] - Tomatoes!
Aug 12 [Sun] - Tomatoes!    


"Cooking-from-your-box" classes in Los Gatos

Join chefs and CSA members Rebecca Mastoris and Karen Haralson on the last Sunday of each month at Williams-Sonoma in Los Gatos for this fun and informative session on making great food from what comes in your Live Earth Farm CSA box. For info about the latest class, see "Upcoming Events" on Karen and Rebecca's Vibrant Food Catering website.


Contact Information
Farm/CSA Office phone: (831) 763-2448
LEF Discovery Program Office phone: (831) 728-2032
(This newsletter is edited and organized by Debbie Palmer, former LEF CSA coordinator.)