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Week 10                            Geauga County, Ohio
Aug. 6, 2013

The Fair Share

What's cropping up!
In this week's shares
Produce information
Bulk veggie info
Stewing chickens available
Beef delivery dates
A holiday to celebrate zucchini
Member Laura Novak's cooking tips column
Local food events
Produce from Mexico linked to food-borne illness
For your reading pleasure
Please support our partners
Anyone can sign up for our newsletter
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"The same teen who can't legally operate a four-wheeler, or [ATV] a farm lane workplace environment can operate a jacked-up F-250 pickup on a crowded urban expressway. By denying these [farm work] opportunities to bring value to their own lives and the community around them, we've relegated our young adults to teenage foolishness. Then as a culture we walk around shaking our heads in bewilderment at these young people with retarded maturity. Never in life do people have as much energy as in their teens, and to criminalize leveraging it is certainly one of our nation's greatest resource blunders."

~ Joel Salatin, 

Folks, This Ain't Normal: A Farmer's Advice for Happier Hens, Healthier People, and a Better World


Buggy silhouette





It's so appropriate that the memberships to the program are called shares. Each week we're delighted to have the opportunity to share the bounty of our farms with you, and hope you are sharing the produce with people you love.


Community supported agriculture is all about shared responsibility. Our members share the risk by investing in the farms at the beginning of the season, and we truly appreciate it. In return, our farm families take on the responsibility of providing the best we can from our farms, no matter what the weather conditions, throughout the 20-week season. Your confidence in our ability to provide value for your investment is the basis of a business model that has made small-scale farming a viable way of life for our farms.


In the spirit of sharing, mark your calendars for this Thursday, Aug. 8. It's National Leave-a-Zucchini-on-Your-Neighbor's-Porch Night. We welcome you to share the wealth of Northeast Ohio produce and join in this fun holiday. What surprises will you find on Friday morning?


This Saturday, Aug. 10 is a Farm Visit day. The Fisher family would like to welcome members to their farm for a tour and corn roast from 2 - 4 p.m. Daniel and Susan Fisher always have a wonderful farm stand and plenty to see in the fields. Call a few days ahead if you would like to pick up a stewing chicken while you're there. The number is 440-693-4632. The Fisher's farm is located at 4738 Gates East Road in Middlefield. See a farm map here.     


We look forward to the opportunity to share some time with you on Saturday. Hope you can make it!



Michelle, Laura and the farmers of Geauga Family Farms

Buggy silhouette


In this week's shares

In this week's shares, CSA members can expect things such as peaches, watermelon, cantaloupe, sweet corn, zucchini, yellow squash, bunching onions, beans (green or wax), pickling cucumbers, cucumbers, tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, carrots, beets, sweet peppers, green bell peppers, Yukon Gold potatoes, fingerling potatoes, eggplant, cabbage, basil, leeks and Green Leaf, Red Leaf or Romaine lettuce.


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. 


Produce information

Melons - One of the challenging crops each year is cantaloupe. We like to let these melons ripen in the field for maximum flavor, but this means they are a little delicate to handle for shipping and they should be eaten as soon as you receive them.


Potatoes - We are sending some different varieties of potatoes out this week. You may notice purple or red potatoes in your share. The red potatoes are red all the way through, and they are supposed to be like this.


Bulk veggies 

As the season goes on, our farms frequently have additional produce available for purchase in bulk quantities (most often 20-pound boxes) for canning or preserving. These often include things like tomatoes, peppers, beets, squash, sweet potatoes, etc. This will change from week to week and from season to season. Most frequently these items are seconds - great for canning but not quite nice enough for the shares. Please check this section of our newsletter each week to see what is currently available.


Canning tomatoes: $22/20-lb. box

Lemon Basil: $3.50/lb.

Red beets: $22/half-bushel (with or without tops)


To order bulk produce, call Rosanna Monday through Friday between the hours of 7 a.m. and 3 p.m. at the warehouse at 440-693-4625. Please leave a message if no one answers, or call Rosanna at home after 4 p.m. and on Saturdays at 440-548-2399. NO SUNDAY CALLS PLEASE! You will receive an invoice via e-mail and will be able to pay with a credit card using our PayPal site.


Stewing chickens available

The Fisher family has stewing chickens available for purchase. These are available for $5 each, and work best when used for soups or stews. They must be picked up at the farm at 4738 Gates East Road, in Middlefield. Please call Susan Fisher at 440-693-4632 to reserve your chickens and schedule a pick-up today!


Remaining 2013 Season grass-fed beef deliveries

Geauga Family Farms grass-fed ground beef and grass-fed stew beef is delivered frozen in 1-pound packages. Beef orders are delivered on a monthly basis to participating sites. Please see the Extras section of our website, here, to place an order. 


Beef delivery dates for Tuesday sites:

Lowe's Greenhouse      








Marigold B&B








Catholic Montessori








St. Andrew








Sage's Orchard








For Tuesday sites, please place any orders by the Thursday prior to the delivery date.


Beef delivery dates for Thursday sites:

Market Café8/22/2013       9/19/2013      10/17/2013
Jones Day8/22/20139/19/201310/17/2013
LEAF Night8/22/20139/19/201310/17/2013
MRI 8/8/20139/12/201310/10/2013
Landerbrook Dental     8/8/20139/12/201310/10/2013
Good Shepherd8/15/20139/19/201310/17/2013

For Thursday sites please place any orders by the Saturday prior to the delivery date.


Beef delivery dates for Saturday sites:

St. Noel   8/10/2013  
9/14/2013 10/12/2013
Family Karate8/10/2013*
First Church Cong8/10/2013
Sage's Orchard8/10/2013*
St. Paul's8/17/2013
First Unitarian8/17/2013
Goddard School8/17/2013

For Saturday sites please place any orders by the Tuesday prior to the delivery date.





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 


Caponata is a great relish/sauce that uses a lot of fresh veggies and complements a wide variety of dishes. It is one of our favorite late summer recipes. We use ours as an appetizer, spread on toasted baguette rounds with goat cheese. It's also delicious with grilled fish and chicken. The trick for the best flavor is to let this sit for at least 24 hours before you eat it. ~Michelle Bandy-Zalatoris



1/4 cup olive oil

1 medium eggplant, 1/2" roughly chopped, about 3 cups

1/2 cups chopped onions, 1/2" dice

1/2 cup celery, 1/2" dice

2 cups chopped tomatoes, 1/4" dice

1 cup chopped summer squash, 1/2" dice

1/2 cup chopped green or red pepper, 1/2" dice

2 tablespoons minced garlic

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1/4 cup wine vinegar

1/3 cup stuffed green olives, torn or sliced in half

1/4 cup capers, drained except for 1 tablespoon juice

1 tablespoon sugar

1/4 minced parsley

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

In a large saucepan with a lid, heat the olive oil. Add the eggplant and onions over medium-high heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the celery, tomatoes, squash, and garlic and cook for about 15 minutes more minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the rest of the ingredients, cover, lower heat, and slowly simmer for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the pan lid if the mixture becomes too wet (this is supposed to be the consistency of a relish, and it's okay if the eggplant becomes mushy). Best served at room temperature. May also be served warm or cold. Freezes well.


Summer Corn Chowder

Makes 4 servings

1 Tbsp. olive oil

½ medium onion, finely chopped

2 celery stalks, finely chopped

½ green pepper, finely chopped (or use 3-4 yummy orange peppers)

3 ears of corn, kernels removed

1 cup potatoes diced in ½ inch pieces (2 medium potatoes or 5-6 new potatoes)

1 cup water

2 tsp. fresh basil (or 1 basil ice cube)

¼ tsp. paprika

2 Tbsp. flour

2 cups skim milk

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Heat oil in medium saucepan. Add celery, onion, and green pepper, and sauté for 2 minutes. Add corn, potatoes, water, salt, pepper, paprika and basil. Bring to a boil, and then reduce heat to medium. Cook covered for about 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Use an immersion blender to puree vegetable mixture, or skip this step for a chunkier soup. Place 1/2 cup of milk in jar with tightly fitting lid. Add flour and shake vigorously. Gradually add milk-flour mixture to cooked vegetables. Then add remaining milk.

Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to boil and thickens. Adjust seasonings to taste.


Zucchini Pancakes

4 eggs

2 cups grated zucchini

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon white sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons olive oil

4 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 cup butter, melted

Preheat grill to 425 to 450 degrees F 

In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs, add shredded zucchini and mix well using a fork. Add flour, sugar, salt and vegetable oil and stir to blend well. Finally, add baking powder and mix well using a large spoon. The batter's consistency should be like heavy whipping cream. Spoon batter on hot grill (about 2 tablespoons) for each pancake. Cook until there are no longer bubbles forming in the pancake about 2 minutes; turn over and cook for 2 minutes longer. Rub pancakes with melted butter and serve immediately.


Lots of our members are foodies, as you can see by those who have sent in recipes lately. Another of our member foodies is Kim Roberts, who chronicles her weekly cooking adventures here.


National Leave-a-Zucchini-on-Your-Neighbor's-Porch Night 

This holiday, celebrated by gardeners of every stripe on Aug. 8 each year, was created as a fun way to share the wealth of prolific summer squash plants. We asked for your ideas and got some creative approaches. Here are a few ideas we received from members last year:


One member family decorates large zucchinis with faces and leaves them on their neighbors' porches.


Member Charlotte Brett had a range of ideas -

A zucchini carving/painting contest (instead of pumpkins)

Use zucchini for arts/crafts like wreathes or ink stamps, or household items, like tea or taper candleholders. 
A zucchini cook-off, a contest to come up with a slogan to promote zucchini consumption ("Eat zucchini - it's gourd!"). Bah-dump-ump.
As games, zucchini Bingo, zucchini juggling, kick-the-zucchini (like kick the can), pin the tail on the zucchini.
Charlotte says, "The possibilities are endless with hoards of gourds!"   


And we couldn't celebrate the holiday without a reprint of the poem "Zucchini Nightmare" submitted by Kathy Yutzy of Parkman Produce. 

Zucchini Nightmare

Our friends all raise zucchini,

It's an easy crop to grow.

They share with us, make such a fuss,

We cannot tell them no.

We must not waste, says wifey dear

We can't throw it away.

I know you'll grow to love it so

We'll eat it every day.

I'll braise zucchini, mash zucchini

Smother it with cheese,

I'll slice and dice, make something nice,

Your appetite to please.

I'll bake zucchini, fry zucchini

Marinate it too!

I'll broil and boil, sauté in oil,

And make zucchini stew.

I'll make zucchini patties

And zucchini jubilee,

I'll grill and chill, toss in some dill,

Zucchini fricassee.

I'll make zucchini candy

And then for something new,

I'll even try zucchini pie

And maybe ice cream, too.

I'm so tired of zucchini

And my tummy's starting to ail,

So I'll make a wish for next year,

His zucchini crop will fail!


Grilled corn on the cob! 

And remember to save some veggies for later

By Laura Novak

It had been a rough day and I was actually thinking about getting some pizza instead of washing all the veggies on pick-up day. But then I saw the first ears of fresh corn for the season and I felt excited and renewed, happily washing the lettuce for one of my giant salads.


My favorite way to grill the corn is directly on the grill, without the husk. It gets charred in places and tastes so nice and sweet. Because we're going out of town in a couple of days, we grilled all of the corn and I made mango salsa, a black bean & corn mixture for the salad, and then scraped some more corn to freeze for later. Using grilled corn in soups adds a nice little crunch of smoky flavor.


Oh, wow, I hear you shouting: "Mango salsa?! Recipe please!" I had some mango left over from making mango piña coladas over the weekend (you can use mangoes instead of or in addition to pineapples), so I chopped up the mango slices into little cubes, diced a quarter of an onion, diced one jalapeño pepper, and added the kernels from about one ear of corn and half a can of black beans, the juice of one lime, a squirt of honey, some fresh cilantro (optional), plus salt and pepper. I've made a similar variation with pineapple- it's also delicious!


I love summer salads! I took the rest of the black beans and mixed with an avocado, half an onion, and kernels of corn from two ears, diced jalapeño and a squeeze of lemon. I also added chipotle chili pepper, a dash of cumin, garlic powder, salt and pepper. We grilled zucchini and onions as well and threw all of these things on top of the lettuce. Add your favorite Mexican dressing. The only thing that could have made it better would have been some tomato, which we didn't have this week.


Having green beans frozen and waiting enhances fall and winter crockpot meals, but it's always so difficult for me not to eat them immediately! This time, our upcoming vacation made it easier for me to freeze the green beans for the future. I snipped and washed them, just like I would if I were eating them right away, but then I laid them on paper towels to dry thoroughly before freezing. Finally, I threw them into a gallon-size freezer bag and tucked them away for the days I don't want to think about - when I'll be missing my fresh CSA veggies (and sunshine!). With a smile, I realized that this little bit of summer will be waiting to cheer me... in minestrone soup, perhaps?

Laura J. Novak is a freelance writer in Lake County. Her blog,, is about eating well and shaking free to live your best life. She enjoys reading about nutrition, participating in yoga, cooking and visiting parks with her husband, Vida. She is a passionate supporter of locally grown, organic produce and even has her own small garden. This is her second year enjoying the Geauga Family Farms CSA. Laura has a bachelor of arts in English and a master's degree in education.

Local food events


Outstanding in the Field Farm Dinner

Thaxton Organic Garlic, 2710 Ravenna St., Hudson

Aug. 11

Outstanding in the Field North American tour will stop at Thaxton's Organic Garlic Farm in Hudson for the third time Aug. 11. This outdoor dinner will be prepared by Chef Brian Goodman of The Greenhouse Tavern. Outstanding in the Field events allow diners to reconnect with where their food originates by pairing a chef with their local farmers. There will be a farm tour. For more information, call 330-283-6137 or visit or


Preserving Your Bounty @ Basket of Life Farm

Countryside Farmers' Markets, 4965 Quick Road, Peninsula

Aug. 13

Preserving your veggies can be fun and rewarding. Learn this timeless talent and enjoy your bounty all year long. Local farmer and canner will teach you how. Cost: $15 per person. For more info, visit or call 330-657-2542.

Healthy Body, Healthy Mind, Healthy World!

Awaken Yoga in Mentor has an entire weekend of learning on being healthier, greener and yoga to help your body detoxify. Spend a weekend with Jennifer Langsdale learning the yogic lifestyle with an introduction to being green in body and mind.

When: Sept. 7 & 8

Times: Saturday, 8 - 4 p.m. and Sunday, 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.

Cost: $165; registration required

Click here to register.

The weekend will include:

Lectures on healthy eating and living

Learn about the Shaktkarmas or cleansing practices of yoga

Living and raw food tasting and demonstration

Truth about vegetarianism

Ways to become greener and save $!

(2) Detoxifying yoga practices with Jennifer

No yoga experience necessary. 

For more information, call 440-488-7212 or visit

Why Cows Need Names: and More Secrets of Amish Farms
Randy James will talk about his latest book, Why Cows Need Names: and More Secrets of Amish Farms, at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 17 at South Franklin Circle. James explores business aspects and day-to-day activities on a small farm as well as the way animals are treated and valued on huge farms versus small family farms. The book debunks the myth that bigger is always better in American agriculture. 


The book follows one young Amish family as they contemplate, start and then struggle to establish a profitable, quintessentially American, small farm. The story starts with Eli Gingerich's first timid phone call to Randy James, the county agricultural agent, and follows the family's progress over the next five years. Through gentle dialogue and true stories, James captures the tension of sitting across an Amish kitchen table to create a simple business plan that will ultimately lead to the family's radiant success, or dismal failure.


Surrounded by a factory farm world, the Gingerich family employs a business model that flatly rejects the dogma of "economies of scale" and instead focuses on the diversity, flexibility and efficiency that only small farms/firms can capture. Why Cows Need Names provides a partial road map, not only for other small farms, but for the many thousands of small family businesses that are created each year and largely ignored in our national psyche. It will appeal to those interested in business management, our food system, animal welfare, and Amish family life.


Randy James is a professor emeritus with The Ohio State University, College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences. His PhD. is in agronomy and his faculty position for almost 30 years was to serve as the county agricultural agent in the Geauga Amish Settlement. He now lives in Beaufort, SC, and visits old friends in the Amish settlement as often as he can.
For reservations to this free event, call South Franklin Circle, 440-247-1300. For more information, call George Lupone at 440-247-5279. Books will be available for purchase and signing.

Fresh produce from Mexico linked to cyclosporiasis outbreak

Clusters of illnesses in the Midwestern and Eastern U.S.

Food Safety Info Sheet: 

As of Aug. 3, 2013:

400 ill, 21 hospitalized in 15 states, including Iowa, Texas, Nebraska, Florida,

Wisconsin, Illinois, Georgia, Michigan, Arkansas, Connecticut, Kansas, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York and Ohio.

Cyclospora infections have a history

Most previous cyclospora infections have been associated with fresh produce, such as raspberries, basil, snow peas, and mesclun lettuce 

State health departments and the CDC are investigating the cause of Cyclospora infections that have been identified in 15 states. Nebraska and Iowa officials believe the cases are linked to a salad mix, while other states have identified various types of fresh produce.

It is unclear whether all the cases are part of the same outbreak. According to the CDC, cases in the outbreak include laboratory-confirmed cyclosporiasis infection in individuals who became ill in June or July 2013.

The FDA traceback investigation has confirmed that the salad mix identified by Iowa and Nebraska as being linked to the outbreak of cyclosporiasis in those states was supplied to Darden restaurants (including Olive Garden and Red Lobster outlets) by Taylor Farms de Mexico, S. de R.L. de C.V., a processor of foodservice salads.

Cyclospora is a parasite that causes an intestinal infection that can last from weeks to months. Symptoms include watery, sometimes explosive diarrhea; stomach cramps; bloating; nausea; vomiting; fatigue; loss of appetite; weight loss; muscle aches; and low-grade fever.

Rewashing salad identified as pre-washed does not reduce risk of food-borne illness as contamination during production or processing may remain tightly attached. A review of the available science suggests that rewashing pre-washed salad is likely to increase risk due to cross-contamination rather than removing any pathogens.


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.


Oranges: The Next GE Produce?

U.S. slaughterhouse workers, truckers fuel deadly piglet virus spread 

Safety not a factor in inspections for egg quality

The FDA Doesn't Want Chickens To Explore The Great Outdoors

Farm to School program good for farmers, kids 


Please support our partners

Please take advantage of your weekly visit to the establishments of our partners. Shop, dine and otherwise patronize the businesses of those who do so much to help us with our efforts in the local food movement. We couldn't do it without them!

Church of the Good Shepherd                                Market Cafe & Wine Bar

Cuyahoga County Board of Health                          Mustard Seed Market

First Church Congregational                                  Catholic Montessori School

First Unitarian                                                        Sage's Apples

The Goddard School                                               St. Andrew Episcopal Church

Hill's Family Karate                                                St. Noel Church

LEAF Night                                                             St. Paul's Episcopal Church

Lowe's Greenhouse                                                Ruffing Montessori School

Marigold Bed & Breakfast                                       Whole Foods


Sign up friends and family for our newsletter

Want to add someone to the newsletter mailing list? Anyone can sign up for our newsletter on our Web site. All they have to do is visit our Web site here, enter their information and they will receive the very next newsletter.


(Between the regular business hours of 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. PLEASE!)

Farm Representatives:

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