|Week 3a Geauga County, Ohio||June 18, 2013|
"It's bizarre that the produce manager is more important to my children's health than the pediatrician."
~ Meryl Streep
Greetings from the farms!
The fields are really looking lush these days as more and more vegetables come into season. This is when things really start to fill out. Long summer evenings provide more time for weeding, harvesting and maintenance. The flurry of activity at the beginning of the season starts to settle into the daily picking and planting work that becomes our pattern for the remaining 18 weeks.
Why don't you join us for a farm visit and see how it all works? Our first outing of the season is scheduled for Tuesday, June 25 at 6 p.m. Marvin and Iva Mae Hershberger are hosting the June Farm Tour at their home, located at 15549 Patch Road in Middlefield. See a map here. We will walk the fields, chat about farming techniques and enjoy refreshments in the barn. It's a wonderful way to spend a summer evening and a great way to meet our farm families!
Bring shoes that can get muddy, bug spray and some cash. There are usually baked goods and extra produce available. Show up any time after 6 p.m., find a parking space along the drive and join us in the fields. If Tuesday evenings don't work well for you, plan on joining us in July and August, when our farm tours will occur on Saturday afternoons. We look forward to seeing you next week.
We've heard wonderful things from our members about their experiences so far. Please know your kind words and excitement about each week's deliveries make all of this worthwhile. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts!
Michelle, Laura and the farmers of Geauga Family Farms
Some general housekeeping - PLEASE READ!
As everyone gets comfortable with the pick-up process, there are still a few details that need some attention:
PLEASE PICK UP YOUR SHARE WITHIN THE ALLOTTED TIME. SITES ARE UNDER NO OBLIGATION TO SAVE YOUR SHARE PAST THAT TIME.
PLEASE UNFOLD YOUR BOX AND PUT IT IN THE STACK WITH THE OTHERS BEFORE LEAVING.
If there is a problem with your share or extras, please contact Laura or Michelle via e-mail immediately so we can get it fixed by the following week.
Please pay attention to share names and sizes. We will be switching to exclusively small, medium and large in the next few weeks.
In the meantime:
Half = Small
Single = Medium
Family = Large
If there has been a problem with your order and we are sending extra items to you, please take your normal share and then look for a box with your name in the special orders/extras section at your pick-up spot.
Beef deliveries - IMPORTANT!
Our beef deliveries continue this week. See the schedule below. If you miss picking up your beef, you won't be able to pick it up until next month.
BEEF DELIVERY DATES FOR THE MONTH OF JUNE ARE AS FOLLOWS:
TODAY! June 18 - Lowe's, Catholic Montessori, St. Andrew, Sage's (for Tuesday members ONLY)
June 20 - Market Café, Jones Day, LEAF Night - (Beef at LEAF MUST be picked up by 6 p.m.)
June 22 - St. Noel, First Church Congregational
The next beef deliveries will occur in July, staring July 11. We recognize that this will take some adjustment on everyone's part, and appreciate your flexibility!
In this week's shares
In this week's shares, CSA members can expect things such as red leaf, green leaf or romaine lettuce, Red Russian, Lacinato or Winterbore kale, Rainbow chard, collard greens, zucchini, kohlrabi, tomatoes, garlic scapes, cherry tomatoes, beets, bunching onions, strawberries, sugar snap peas and radishes.
NOTE: You may or may not receive all of the types of produce listed above. This is a list of possible items. Different size shares and shares received at different times of the week may include different items.
We include recipes each week using the items in your share. We'd love for you to share your recipes with us and we will include them in the newsletter. Please e-mail them to LDobson@geaugafamilyfarms.org.
Thanks to our partner Whole Foods in Woodmere for providing some great recipes this season. We will be featuring their selections in several of our upcoming newsletters.
Coconut Creamed Greens and Quinoa
(courtesy of Whole Foods Market Cooking)
1 cup onion, chopped
1 cup mushrooms, sliced
3 sliced garlic cloves
3 cups kale, steamed
1 cup quinoa, cooked
1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
3/4 cups coconut milk (full fat)
1/3 cup vegetable stock
Pinch crushed red pepper
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
In a large skillet sauté onions in 1 tsp olive oil for 3 minutes on medium heat. Add 3 cloves of sliced garlic continue cooking for 2-3 minutes
Add mushrooms, cook until brown. Try not to move them around in the pan too much until they take on some color. Once they are brown (this should take about 3 minutes) add kale, toss together and season w/ salt and pepper.
Add coconut milk to pan and bring to a simmer. Continue cooking until thick and creamy. Add quinoa and enough veggies stock to resemble a creamy risotto (typically you will need at least 1/4 cup) Cook for 5-8 more minutes.
Season with crushed red pepper and additional salt and pepper if needed. Serve and Savor.
One-Pot Kale and Quinoa Pilaf
(courtesy of Whole Foods Market and Food52.com)
2 cups salted water
1 cup quinoa
1 bunch lacinato kale, washed and chopped into 1" lengths
1 meyer lemon, zested and juiced
2 scallions, minced
1 tablespoon toasted walnut oil
3 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese
Salt and pepper
Bring the water to a boil in a covered pot. Add the quinoa, cover, and lower the heat until it is just enough to maintain a simmer. Let simmer for 10 minutes, then top with the kale and re-cover. Simmer another 5 minutes, then turn off the heat and allow to steam for 5 more minutes.
While the quinoa is cooking, take a large serving bowl and combine half of the lemon juice (reserving the other half), all of the lemon zest, scallions, walnut oil (you can substitute olive oil if you desire), pine nuts, and goat cheese.
Check the quinoa and kale when the cooking time has completed -- the water should have absorbed, and the quinoa will be tender but firm, and the kale tender and bright green. If the quinoa still has a hard white center, you can steam a bit longer (adding more water if needed). When the quinoa and kale are done, fluff the pilaf, and tip it into the waiting bowl with the remaining ingredients. As the hot quinoa hits the scallions and lemon it should smell lovely. Toss to combine, seasoning with salt and pepper, and the remaining lemon juice if needed.
Member Jerie Green, who picks up at St. Andrew and happens to be the owner of Lakenetwork, the company that makes our website look so great, passed along this recipe.
"Everyone raved about this at a recent family picnic. And then I had the leftovers for breakfast the next morning."
Crustless Swiss Chard Quiche
1 tsp. olive oil
1/2 sweet onion
1/2 bunch Swiss chard
2-1/2 C. shredded cheese
1 C. milk
Salt & pepper
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Wash & dry chard. Cut off the very ends of the stems. Roughly chop (leaving stems intact) the chard. Add onion and chard to the oil and saute until stems are tender (do not overcook). Add salt & pepper to taste.
Meanwhile, grate 2.5 cups of cheese. Use whatever you have on hand - I used cheddar, Swiss and a little aged goat cheese. Whisk eggs. Add milk & cheese. Fold in the chard/onion mixture. Pour into a pie dish that has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Bake for 35-45 min. or until golden brown and no liquid seeps when you poke it with a knife.
Katie Wheaton, who picks up at Ruffing Montessori, sent us this recipe for rhubarb.
Strawberry-Rhubarb Upside-Down Cake
1 cup sliced fresh rhubarb (peel tougher outside skin off)
3/4 cup orange juice, divided
3 TBSP granulated sugar
2 1/2 cups sliced strawberries (frozen work fine)
3 large eggs
2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
Preheat oven to 350. Coat a 9" round cake pan with olive oil.
Combine rhubarb, granulated sugar, and 1/4 cup orange juice. Let sit, mixing occasionally, for 10-20 minutes. Add strawberries, and spread fruit mixture in bottom of pan.
Whisk eggs, olive oil, brown sugar, vanilla, and remaining orange juice in large bowl. Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in separate bowl. Gradually stir the dry ingredients into wet ingredients. Do not over-mix. Pour mixture over fruit in the pan.
Bake until toothpick in center comes out clean, 40-50 minutes.
Run a knife around edge of pan to loosen cake. Invert the cake onto a serving plate and remove the pan. Let cool to room temperature.
Longtime member Kim Roberts shared her blog with us, in which she writes about what she is doing with all the yummy veggies she gets in her shares each week. Check back weekly for more of her delicious recipes and ideas.
Now accepting applications for the 15-week program
Tell your friends who are envious of all the fresh, delicious veggies you're receiving that they too can get their own share. We are accepting applications online only for the 15-week program, which will start July 9, 11 and 13 and run into October. Click here to sign up now. Hurry! Deadline is June 28.
Upgrade your share now
Have you found yourself wishing you had more veggies left at the end of the week? Upgrade your share now to the next size larger, or even two sizes larger. Let Laura or Michelle know by e-mail if you'd like to do so and we will send you an invoice via PayPal for the difference. The upgraded share sizes will be effective the week of July 9, starting along with the new members in the 15-week program. Deadline to upgrade is June 28.
Comments from our members
We have heard from many of you, either sharing recipes or telling us how much you are enjoying your membership in the CSA program. We thought we'd share your comments in The Fair Share.
"We are enjoying our weekly supply of vegetables! We just picked up our second week's share, and would love to know what the mystery greens are! They have long pointed leaves and red stems. We thought maybe something like chard, but we also have a nice bunch of red chard, and these stems are much narrower.
All of the produce looks amazing! This year we invested in a food dehydrator, so now we can freeze, can, and dry some of the harvest."
Thanks for running the best CSA around!
Dorrie and Joe Keough
"...it is truly amazing" [how many wholesome food items we can find and buy directly from farmers here in Northeast Ohio]. "From CSAs like yours to the many farmers markets we have in Cleveland, to urban and suburban community gardens... the choices just keep growing. Thanks to Geauga Family Farmers I've made delicious and healthy stir-fries, salads, and a rhubarb pie for a potluck that kept people going back for seconds! I get very passionate about the local food movement that's happening all over the country, and I'm thankful that I can participate right here. Keep up the great work!"
"I have to say last week was my first time receiving your products. After reading all the concerns you addressed in this e-mail I just had you tell you I can not say enough about the AMAZING produce I enjoyed last week!!!!! All of you rock - growing, harvesting and delivering my family such yummy foods. I loved eating the dandelions and bunching onions - never had either one before. I love this new adventure of eating - thanks for all you are doing to help me and my family eat better, and care for our planet better (by buying local). Looking forward to today's surprise."
Cheryl Van Demark
Thanks on Facebook from The Bicycle Hub bike shop in Mentor
Rob & Emily Ponti from the Bicycle Hub provided muffins for all the riders in the Sunday in June bike ride that takes place every year in Amish Country.
"So many people to thank for the wonderful day today! First, the Amish Countryside Home Bakery for supplying 600 banana muffins, second, to the riders and volunteers who helped clear out the muffins and 250+ cups of coffee, and lastly, to the Cleveland Touring Club for having us! We'll be back again next year! Thank you!"
Other comments from our Facebook friends
Jennifer Schiavone "I like the tomatoes and strawberries we got in our share!"
Lisa Montoni Garvin "Me too, Jennifer! Excited to try the broccoli as well."
Local food events
Fresh! A School About Health Through Nourishment with Debbi Mayo
The Mandala Center for the Healing Arts, 114 East Park St., Chardon
Friday and Saturday 10 a.m. till 1 or 2 p.m.
June 14 and 15 or July 12 and 13
Class fee: $70 per single class day or $132 per module (both Friday and Saturday)
Note: An additional fee of $10 for each class day will be collected to cover food costs.
Fresh! is a program about achieving excellent health through food and lifestyle choices. Fresh! classes will teach you about healthy cooking basics, nourishing snacks, the impact of nutrition on children's health, food choices and consciousness, improving the quality of life, macronutrients/micronutrients, and more. You will also learn about food myths, including proteins, carbohydrates and fats, as well as calcium and other harmful myths and the truth about oils, fats, salt and dairy.
Each class will feature nourishing samples of the foods you'll learn to plan and prepare. Some classes will include food prep. You will receive recipes, informative handouts, a resource list to pursue your own research, a light, delicious, nutritious meal each class.
You'll learn simple guidelines to create a plan for nourishing meals each week, one that works and will have you enjoying truly nutritious food on a regular basis! You can be empowered to make informed food choices that you and everyone in your family will love!
Registration is required. To register or for more information, contact Debbi at 440-286-8866 or DMayo@medicinebasket.net.
New food safety regulations could threaten small operations
This is an article from the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association. Below is a link that gives the other side of the story. This can just as easily happen in Ohio, or any other state in the U.S.
Beginning farmers start small. USDA data shows that 96 percent of farms run by farmers with 10 years or less experience have annual gross revenues less than $250,000. The average achieve net income to US farms is 10 percent of sales, and so is less than $25,000 for almost all beginning farms. Beginning farmers face many challenges: They are less likely than established farms to inherit land or buy it from a relative; less likely to receive government payments; and more likely to have difficulty obtaining credit and financing land purchases. And now the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is piling on new challenges in the form of its proposed regulations implementing the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).
According to the FDA, the average annual cost to comply with FSMA's produce safety rules for farms grossing less than $250,000 per year will be 6 percent of revenue. Do the math, and then ask yourself why anyone would choose to start farming-to endure 12+ hour days, have an extra job off the farm, face crop loss risk-when the federal government is promising to take more than half the profits. It may be the understatement of the year when FDA, in an economic impact analysis, says that "the rate of entry of very small and small [farm] businesses will decrease" as a result of the produce rules.
Just as overwhelming is the companion proposed rule on fresh produce handling and other food processing. This rule treats local food hubs the same as 499-employee manufacturing plants, with disproportionate requirements for record-keeping and sanitization. Even though firms with 20 or fewer employees produce just 4 percent of the processed food sold in the US, those size firms will bear 73 percent of the cost of implementing FSMA's preventive controls, according to FDA's own analysis.
In other words, the food hub movement will also be shut down by FSMA, cutting off a critical market channel that allows farmers to scale-up while retaining a significant share of the value of their crops. And beginning farmers are especially vulnerable to the loss of this sales outlet.
We are not the only ones concerned about all this. Former USDA Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan, a champion of local food and organic farming, stated in a recent speech that the FSMA rules have the potential to "destroy some operations."
If we are to change this dangerous trajectory, we have to speak out. Food safety crusaders are running a well-funded campaign to clamor for even more stringent rules, despite the devastating impacts it will have on producers of healthy local foods. The deadline for comments on the rules is Sept. 16, so we've got just three months to make our voices heard.
To find out how you can get involved in the campaign, visit CFSA's food safety action center here today.
Click here to read a viewpoint from the other side of the story.
For your reading pleasure
We have so many things we'd like to share with you regarding the local food movement and things like the farm bill, the latest news on GMO foods, and much, much more, but we don't want to make our newsletter any longer. Until we get our blog up and running on our website, we are going to include links to articles that you may find interesting. Here are a couple. If you run across any articles you think would be of interest to our members, feel free to send us the link for inclusion here.
How Cows Save the Planet
GM wheat appears limited to one field
Sign up friends and family for our newsletter
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(Between the regular business hours of 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. PLEASE!)
Laura Dobson, 440-478-9849,
Michelle Bandy-Zalatoris, 216-321-7109,
Grass-fed beef & poultry
Kathleen Webb, 216-408-7719,
Geauga Family Farms, Middlefield, Ohio 44062