Week 2, Summer 2014          Geauga County, Ohio
June 17, 2014

The Fair Share

What's cropping up!
It's a good week!
Check sign-in sheet carefully
15-week sign-ups coming soon!
Extra items available in farm store
In this week's shares
Member Laura Novak's column
Local events
Farming, environment, local food in the news
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"The soil is the great connector of lives, the source and destination of all. It is the healer and restorer and resurrector, by which disease passes into health, age into youth, death into life. Without proper care for it we can have no community, because without proper care for it we can have no life." 
~ Wendell Berry, 

The Unsettling of America: Culture and Agriculture 






A good week

The CSA got off to a great start last week. There were a few small issues but we appreciate everyone's patience as we work them out. Our farm representatives had an opportunity to get out to some of the sites during last week's pick-up, and it was great to reconnect with members and site managers. It was such a tremendous reminder that even though we have many sites throughout the region, we're all part of one big family, connected by our love of locally grown food.


We hope you are enjoying the season's first veggies. We look forward to an expanding mix for the boxes as the season progresses. Remember to use this newsletter as your source for learning about the items in your share and finding recipes for using them.


We are hoping to try something new this season. Starting in July our farmers will be visiting the pick-up sites to chat with our members. We will let you know when to expect a visit at your site. This will be a great opportunity to share your questions and ideas. 


See below for information about ordering extras and our 15-week shares. We've included some great recipes and our first column of the season from Laura Novak. It's a good week!




~ with Laura and the farmers of Geauga Family Farms


Please look carefully at the check-in sheets

Please check for your share size carefully on the check-in sheets as they look a little different this year, especially to confirm your share size.


Also, please remember to check off your name when you take your share. If you get to your site and cannot find your name on the list, please do not take a share. We do not leave extra shares at the sites. Please call Laura at 440-478-9849 immediately so we can address the issue. Rest assured, we will fix the problem and you will get your share.


15-week share sign-ups available soon!

We are finalizing the details for our mid-season shares. If you missed signing up for the start of the season, we will have a very limited number of shares available starting this week. We are finalizing numbers and site/truck capacity issues to determine where additional shares will be available. We will not have space at all of our sites, but hope to have several options. Check our website at the end of the week.


Ordering add-on items

Members are able to order extra items to be delivered with their shares. We have a new farm store on our website that simplifies the process. Just follow the link here to add items to your order. 


Orders may be placed as follows:

                For Tuesday delivery: place your order between Wednesday morning and Thursday at midnight.

                For Thursday delivery: place your order between Friday morning and Saturday at midnight.

                For Saturday delivery: place your order between Sunday morning and Monday at midnight.


We will be sending weekly e-mail reminders to let you know when the store is open for your pick-up site. If you do not wish to order extra items, you are welcome to opt out of the weekly reminders by clicking off "Receive Automatic Email Alerts" in your account.


Our farm store includes honey, jams, baked goods from Countryside Bakery, cheese from Middlefield Cheese Co-op, maple syrup from our farms, ground beef and eggs. When we have bulk produce available, we will also post this in the store.


In this week's shares

In this week's shares, CSA members can expect things such as lettuce (red leaf, green leaf or Romaine), kale (Red Russian, Lacinato or Winterbore), Swiss chard, bok choy, kohlrabi, bunching onions, collards, broccoli, cucumbers, tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, zucchini, garlic scapes, beets and strawberries. 


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. 


Salad of the Week: Spring Salad     

This is one of my family's favorite salads, especially during the late spring/early summer months.   

~ Michelle

One head of leaf lettuce, separated, washed & spun dry

¼ cup finely chopped garlic scapes

1 cup of chopped sugar snap peas or raw shelled peas

2 strips of bacon, cooked, cooled and chopped

½ cup of chick peas

½ cup of crumbled goat cheese

½ cup of crispy onions (we use Lars brand)

Balsamic vinaigrette dressing to taste

Tear the lettuce leaves into bite-sized pieces. Toss with remaining ingredients, dress and serve.


Green Smoothie

Get your daily greens the easy way in a delicious smoothie!      

~ Michelle


Makes 2 smoothies

1 cup Greek yogurt or almond milk

¾ cup orange juice

½ cup ice

1 banana

2-3 large kale, Swiss chard or lettuce leaves, torn into smaller pieces

2 tsp. honey

½ cup fresh or frozen berries of your choice (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)

Other great add-ins - ½ avocado, ¼ cup chopped cucumber, frozen pineapple, ½ apple

Add ingredients to blender, blend until smooth and serve.


Garlic scapes

Scapes are the wild and curly shoots that spring from the tops of garlic plants. They're brilliantly green, and can be thick or thin, curved or corkscrewed. They have a mild garlic fragrance and a mellow garlic flavor. The scent is a cross between garlic and summer grass. It's got a freshness that garlic loses as it develops.


Scapes are meant to be cut - cutting them strengthens the garlic bulbs that are growing underground - so it's a win-win for the garlic and us, the cooks. Although scapes needn't be cooked. In fact, if you do cook them, you should cook them lightly, maybe in a quick stir-fry. Garlic scapes are best raw. They're terrific chopped or very thinly sliced added to a tuna or chicken salad, stirred into hot rice or scattered over a salad, the way you might scatter sliced scallions or an herb.


Garlic Scape Pesto

10 garlic scapes, finely chopped

1/3 to 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan  (to taste and texture)

1/3 cup slivered almonds, lightly toasted

About 1/2 cup olive oil

Sea salt

Makes about 1 cup

Put the scapes, 1/3 cup of the cheese, almonds and half the olive oil in the bowl of a food processor (or use a blender or a mortar and pestle).

Whir to chop and blend all the ingredients and then add the remainder of the oil and, if you want, more cheese. If you like the texture, stop; if you'd like it a little thinner, add some more oil. Season with salt.

If you're not going to use the pesto immediately, press a piece of plastic against the surface to keep it from oxidizing.

The pesto can be stored in the refrigerator for a couple of days or packed airtight and frozen for a couple of months, by which time tomatoes should be at their juiciest. Garlic scape and almond pesto goes great with tomatoes!


Kohlrabi & Apple Slaw with Creamy Coleslaw Dressing

Makes 4 cups, easily adapted for less

1/4 cup cream
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 tablespoon good mustard
1/2 teaspoon sugar
Salt & pepper to taste - go easy here
Fresh mint, chopped

1 pound fresh kohlrabi, trimmed, peeled, grated or cut into batons with a mandoline
2 apples, peeled, grated or cut into batons (try to keep equivalent volumes of kohlrabi:apple)

Whisk cream into light pillows - this takes a minute or so, no need to get out a mixer. Stir in remaining dressing ingredients, the kohlrabi and apple. Serve immediately.

Recipe from the blog A Veggie Venture - a great place to find new and inspiring ways to use vegetables.


Baked Kale Chips

Serves 6

"Olive oil and seasoned salt are all you need to turn fresh kale leaves into delicious good-for-you baked snacks."

1 bunch kale

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 tsp. seasoned salt

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F. Line a non-insulated cookie sheet with parchment paper.

With a knife or kitchen shears carefully remove the leaves from the thick stems and tear into bite-sized pieces. Wash and thoroughly dry kale with a salad spinner. Drizzle kale with olive oil and sprinkle with seasoning salt.

Bake until the edges brown but are not burnt, 10 to 15 minutes.

Recipe from Allrecipes.com


Summertime in Ohio!

This spring has drawn us in ever so gently, slowly stretching into the warmer weather and thawing our bones from the long winter. The world is green again. Last week's first share was the sign that we've finally made it through yet again. It's finally Summertime in Ohio!


Whether this is your first year or you are a CSA pro, surely you are already noticing (or remembering and rejoicing in) the freshness of local, organic produce. When I bit into the cucumber, it brought back the refreshing memories from the last couple of years - Now this is a cucumber! No more soft and squishy cucumbers from China! 


Perhaps you were holding up the funny looking pink celery, thinking "What is this and how do I eat it?" (Don't worry, I won't tell. I might have done that once...) No, it's not celery. It's rhubarb and it has a tart but sweet flavor. You'll clean the rhubarb just like celery. It's often used in desserts and below you will find a recipe for an easy and delicious Rhubarb Crumble shared with me by a lovely, locally notoriously amazing cook and my mother-in-law, Lauren Novak. 


Feeling daring and on a health kick, I actually tried the rhubarb in a green smoothie. It was delicious! I added strawberries, blueberries, a frozen banana, half a rhubarb stalk (diced very small to avoid strings), chia seeds, ¼ avocado, a handful of spinach, a scoop of protein powder and almond milk. It was refreshing and energizing! In place of the avocado and protein powder, you could always add Greek vanilla yogurt. (Serves one)


You could also use the beautiful Swiss chard in place of spinach, but I had been too excited and already fried it all up the first night. There was an excellent "Sauteed Greens" recipe for the Swiss chard, along with instructions on cleaning and storing greens, in the first newsletter in case you missed it.


I look forward to sharing our fresh summer adventures as fellow Geauga Family Farms CSA members this summer. Hooray for summer in Ohio and for fresh veggies!


Rhubarb Crumble

Filling                                                          Crumble Topping

2 cups diced rhubarb                                      1 cup flour

3 cups diced strawberries                              ¾ cup brown sugar

1 cup brown sugar                                         ½ cup oats

½ Tbsp. lemon juice                                      ¼ tsp salt

3 Tbsps. cornstarch                                        8 Tbsps. butter

¼ tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 350. Grease an 8-inch square baking dish. In a large bowl, combine filling ingredients and place in baking dish. In a food processor, pulse all topping ingredients until clumpy. Sprinkle topping over filling and bake for 45 minutes. Let cool.


Laura J. Novak is a freelance writer and passionate supporter of locally grown, organic produce. Director and founder of Light Your Life Healing Arts in Mentor, Laura is certified as a Raindrop Technique (Relaxation Massage with Essential Oils), Advanced Reiki, Angelic Reiki Energy Healing, and Body Wisdom Practitioner. She also serves as a wellness consultant with Young Living Essential Oils. You can learn more about Light Your Life Healing Arts here. Laura is excited to participate in her third year with the Geauga Family Farms CSA and her second year as a contributing columnist to the newsletter. She also has a bachelor's degree in English from Baldwin-Wallace College and a master's in education from Ursuline College. 


Local health, exercise and food events


Chautauqua in Chagrin

Chautauqua-in-Chagrin Falls will return July 1 to Chagrin Falls for its eighth season, this year bringing The Sustainable Table for a program on how to create a community from food. 

Each of the four programs will begin every other Tuesday at 6:30 for four weeks.

WHAT: The Sustainable Table @ Federated Church - Panel format featuring Chef Doug Katz, Chef Jonathon Sawyer, Mark Trapp and Marc S. White.

WHEN: 6:30 - 8 p.m. July 1

WHERE: Federated Church, 76 Bell St., Chagrin Falls

TICKETS & INFO: Call 440-247-9700 or visit chagrinarts.org


Local food, farming, environment in the news

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.


Growing Cities: Let's Get Urban Farming on PBS

Glass: A Homesteader's Friend

Study: Glyphosate Doubles Risk Of Lymphoma

Trade groups sue VT over GMO law

Indians baseball stars face off in cow-milking contest against Texas Rangers


(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