Week  5                                                    Geauga County, Ohio
June 30, 2015

The Fair Share     

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"If the rain spoils our picnic,

but saves a farmer's crop,

who are we to say it shouldn't rain?"

~ Tom Barrett











Greetings from the farms!


We are looking forward to a small holiday break, and hope you are, too.


The time leading up to the holiday weekend often finds us busy getting ready for company, and this year is no different. We have been busy getting ready for your visit! We are all looking forward to seeing you at tonight's farm tour, and hope the rain holds off. We'll be here even if it doesn't, welcoming old friends and meeting new ones. Bring boots or old shoes for the mud (although it isn't too bad), rain gear, some mosquito repellant and your questions about Geauga Family Farms. We've cooked up some great samples of some of our favorite dishes made with early summer produce and we can't wait to share them with you. It should be an enjoyable evening at the Miller Farm, rain or shine.


We also want to take this opportunity to remind our Saturday members that we will not be delivering shares this Saturday, July 4. We wanted our site managers, volunteers, drivers and our warehouse team to be able to enjoy the holiday. We have sent an e-mail requesting your preference for an alternate delivery date, or credit in our online farm store. Please let us know at your earliest convenience.


There is something about the Fourth of July that signals summer is finally in full swing, and even more delicious produce is just around the corner. Now, if we could just convince Mother Nature to agree with that idea! 


Sending sunny thoughts your way,


Michelle Bandy-Zalatoris

~ with Laura Dobson and the farmers of Geauga Family Farms


In this week's shares

In this week's shares, CSA members can expect things such as blueberries, lettuce (red/green leaf, Romaine), kale (Lacinato, Winterbore, Red Russian), Swiss chard, collards, basil, broccoli, kohlrabi, cauliflower, sweet onions, bunching onions, green garlic, tomatoes, cabbage, zucchini, yellow squash, beets, pickling cucumbers, cucumbers, peas and cherry tomatoes.

NOTE: You will 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.


Weather report

It sure has been rainy. Our greens have been thriving in this weather, getting large and lush. The extra water can have an impact on some vegetable varieties by causing them to be a little less flavorful and more delicate. Be sure to process or use produce more quickly during rainy periods like this.


Vegetable info

You may notice some unusual new vegetables in the boxes this week. The variety of cauliflower that we are sending may have a slight purple tint. It is supposed to look this way. We are also sending some bunches of daikon radishes. These are a little spicier when they are harvested in the summer. You can roast them to give them more of a mellow flavor, or shred them and add them to a traditional cole slaw for a delicious zing.


Online farm-store vegetables

The following vegetables are currently available in our farm store:



Collard greens

Green leaf lettuce

Pickling cucumbers

Red leaf lettuce

Romaine lettuce

Russian red kale

Yellow squash

#1 Slicing tomatoes


Supplies are limited on some of these items, but keep checking back for new weekly additions. Click here to order now.


No deliveries Saturday, July 4

We're providing one more reminder that we will not be delivering shares this Saturday, July 4, in observance of the holiday. If you receive your share on Saturdays, please let us know whether you would like a make-up share delivered on a different Saturday (provide date) or a credit for our online farm store to use for extra items that can be delivered with a future share. Contact Michelle at with your preference. 


Farm tour details

It's not too late to join us tonight, June 30, for our first farm tour of the season. We will gather at the farm of Andy and Laura Miller to tour the fields and greenhouses, sample some dishes using current items from the shares, and more. The visit will run from 6:30-8:30 p.m., but join us when you are able. Please remember to bring insect repellant and to wear shoes appropriate for walking through potentially muddy fields. The Miller Farm is located at 17201 Bundysburg Road in Middlefield.


To help us know how many to expect, please make reservations in our farm store through your account, here.

There is no charge to attend.



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  .


Here is a garlic scape recipe sent in by member Natalie Gertz-Young. She writes, "This stuff is great on everything."


Garlic Scape Dressing 

10- 15 garlic scapes, chopped into 1-inch or smaller pieces with tough ends trimmed and removed

1 Tbsp. honey

1 Tbsp. Dijon or grainy mustard (just not the bright yellow stuff!)

¼ cup white wine or champagne vinegar

½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. If the mixture is too thick and won't blend add water 1 tablespoon at a time until it blends freely.

Natalie also sent in this fried rice recipe to use with whatever you might have in your CSA box.

Spring CSA Fried Rice

This is more of a method than a recipe. It is great when you have a little of this and a little of that.

Serves 8

1 pound protein of choice: shredded chicken, shrimp, shredded pork, tofu, etc.

3 cups cooked rice *

2 Tbsps. high temp, neutral flavored cooking oil like vegetable or safflower

2-3 shredded or julienned carrots ( about 1 cup)

1 cup shelled peas or snow peas (frozen work great too!)

½ cup chopped onion (green, bunch, know, white, red, or whatever you have on hand) 

1 medium kohlrabi, shredded or julienned ( about 1 cup)

1 Tbsp. dark sesame oil

10- 15 garlic scapes, finely sliced on a bias with tough ends trimmed and removed (about 1 cup)

2 eggs, lightly beaten

2-3 Tbsps. soy sauce (more or less to taste)

Sriracha to taste (optional)

Cook your protein (if needed). Preheat a large skillet or wok to medium heat. Pour high temp cooking oil in the bottom. Add onion, kohlrabi, garlic scapes, peas and carrots and fry until tender. Slide veggies to the side, and pour the beaten eggs onto the other side. Using a spatula, scramble the eggs. Once cooked, mix the eggs with the vegetable mix. Add the rice and protein of choice to the veggie and egg mixture. Pour the soy sauce, dark sesame oil and sriracha (if using) on top. Stir and fry the rice and veggie mixture until heated through and combined.


How To Make Scallion Pancakes 

2 1/2 cups white flour 

1 cup warm water 

Oil for the pancakes, such as vegetable or sesame

Coarse kosher salt 

1 bunch scallions 

High-smoke-point oil for the pan, such as vegetable, sunflower or peanut oil 


You will need:

Spray oil or cooking spray 

Rolling pin 

Baking sheet or pastry board 

10-inch heavy skillet or sauté pan 

Thin spatula 

Kitchen scissors 

 1. Make the dough and let it rest: Mix 2 1/2 cups flour with 1 cup water until it forms a smooth dough. Knead by doubling the dough over and pressing it down repeatedly, until the dough is even more smooth and very elastic. Coat this ball of dough lightly in oil and put it back in the bowl. Cover the bowl with a damp cloth and let the dough rest for about 30 minutes. 

2. Roll out the dough: Cut the dough into 4 equal parts. Lightly oil the back of a large metal baking sheet (or a smooth stone countertop or pastry board). Roll out one part of the dough on the back of the baking sheet. Roll until it is a thin rectangle at least 12 x 9 inches. 

3. Chop the scallions: Finely chop the bunch of scallions. (I usually use the green tops and just the very top of the white parts.) Set them on your work surface along with a small bowl of kosher salt. 

4. Top the dough: Lightly brush the top of the dough with oil, then sprinkle it evenly with chopped scallions and kosher salt. 

5. Roll up the dough: Starting from the long end, roll the dough up tightly, creating one long snake of rolled-up dough. 

6. Cut in half: Cut the dough snake in two equal parts. 

7. Coil the dough and let it rest: Take one of these halves and coil into a round dough bundle. Let it rest for at least 15 minutes and ideally longer, while you repeat this process with the rest of the dough. 

8. Roll out the coil: Pat a coiled dough bundle into a flat, smooth, round pancake. You can do this with a rolling pin or with your hands. 

9. Cook the pancake for 2 minutes: Heat a 10-inch heavy skillet or sauté pan over medium-high heat, and oil it with a drizzle of canola, vegetable, or peanut oil. When the oil shimmers, pick up the pancake dough and lay it gently in the pan. It should sizzle, but not burn. Cook for 2 minutes on one side. 

10. Flip and cook for an additional 2 minutes: Flip the pancake over with a spatula and cook for an additional 2 minutes on the other side, or until golden brown. Repeat steps 9-11 with the rest of the pancake dough coils. 

To Serve: Cut the pancake into wedges with a pair of kitchen scissors, and serve immediately with soy sauce or another dipping sauce. 

Recipe from TheKitchn.com


Roasted Daikon Radish, Carrots and Peppers  

1 bunch daikon radishes (3 daikons), scrubbed and sliced into 1/4-inch rounds 

4 carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch rounds
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 shallot, thinly sliced

2 Tbsps. extra virgin olive oil Salt and pepper, to taste 

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Combine the daikon, carrots, red peppers, shallot and olive oil on a nonstick baking sheet. Season well with salt and pepper. Roast for 25-30 minutes, stirring once or twice until tender.
Drizzle the veggies with balsamic vinegar and return to the oven. Roast for an additional 5 minutes. Toss well and then transfer to a serving bowl.

Recipe from sarahscucinabella.com


Mediterranean Cucumber Salad 

Serves 4 as a side dish

6 pickling cucumbers (cut in ½-inch dice)

½ cup pitted kalamata olives

½ cup feta cheese, crumbled


For the vinaigrette:

1/4 cup red-wine vinegar

1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard

1 tsp. honey

Salt and black pepper, to taste

½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 tsp. oregano (if desired)

Place cucumbers, olives and feta in a medium bowl. Whisk the vinegar, mustard, honey, salt and pepper together in a small bowl. Whisking constantly, add the oil in a slow, steady stream and continue whisking until thickened. Toss salad and dressing together, and place in refrigerator to chill a bit before serving. Sprinkle with oregano if desired.

Recipe by Michelle Bandy-Zalatoris


Cheesy Squash Casserole 

1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
6 medium yellow summer squash, thinly sliced
1 large Vidalia onion, thinly sliced
1 Tbsp. butter
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar
1/2 cup sour cream
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 sleeve crackers, crushed medium to fine (recommended: Ritz) 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 2-quart casserole dish. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute the squash, onion, and butter until soft. Transfer to a bowl and stir in the Parmesan, Cheddar, and sour cream. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Place in the prepared casserole dish and sprinkle the cracker crumbs evenly over the top. Bake for 20 minutes or until the top is golden and bubbly. 

Recipe from FoodNetwork.com


Why organic?

By Laura J. Novak


My darling husband has been reading my occasional rambling and listening when I sing of the beauty of the organic, local veggies while throwing things around in the kitchen like a wild, inspired chef (or kindergartener).  


Checking in on the "training" over the last couple of years, I asked him, "Honey, why do you buy organic at the grocery store?" Expectantly waiting for what I knew would be a dazzling, inspiring reply to motivate new CSA'ers to jump up and pump their fists victoriously in pride, I was a bit surprised when he answered, "Because if I don't you'll yell at me."


Why am I so passionate about organic, non-GMO food? Well, for one thing I was frightened by the pictures of farmers harvesting strawberries in space suits to protect them from the heavy pesticides, then the next picture of a small child biting into that same, juicy strawberry. 


Three years ago, I first met Michelle and some farmers of the Geauga Family Farms CSA. Someone asked, "Why did you decide to farm organic?" and a farmer replied that he saw other farmers in the area using pesticides, then those farmers and their families got sick. He chose to keep his family safe, as well as the families buying his produce. That, too, stuck with me.


Here's a thought to chew on: "Until 100 years ago, all food was organic... We've been on this planet for about 200,000 years. Until about 70 years ago, all we ever had to eat was organic food. Now, in a few short generations, we've gone from having organic, whole foods as the norm to chemically laden, genetically modified edible food-like substances as the norm. What would have been abnormal for almost all of human history is suddenly normal? Suddenly healthier than what has sustained us for millennia?"

~ Kristen Michaelis, Beautiful Babies


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 third 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. 


30 Women Under 30 Changing Food

There are hundreds of women who inspire us at Food Tank. They are entrepreneurs, stewards of the land, business owners, researchers, farmers, and innovators, who are the backbone of the world's food systems.

In fact, on average, women represent 43 percent of the world's agricultural labor force and 47 percent of the global fisheries labor force, according to the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Bank. These hard-working women produce more than half of the world's food despite being less than half of the labor force, and women account for 60 to 80 percent of food production in developing countries. And if the world's women farmers had the same access to resources as men, 150 million people could be lifted out of poverty, according to the FAO. A crop yield gap of about 20-30 percent between male and female farmers is largely due to differential access to resources and inputs. Women fill this gap by working up to 13 hours per week longer than men in agriculture.


"Women are the priority. The majority of smallholder farmers in Africa are women and, in urban areas, you're primarily looking at women-led households. So we can't solve hunger if we don't have gender-sensitive programming that addresses access to opportunities for women, whether it's through education or tools for cooking, like solar-powered stoves," says Ertharin Cousin, executive director of the U.N. World Food Programme.


As the impacts of climate change become more evident, the world will need to invest in more effective strategies to alleviate hunger and poverty. And that means standing with our mothers, grandmothers, and sisters who are farming and giving women farmers the resources they need to nourish both people and the planet.


Click here to read about 30 rising women stars in food and agriculture who are reshaping food systems around the world.


Area events

Set sail with the Cleveland Vegan Society for a sunset cruise on board the Nautica Queen. Enjoy a meal by Cleveland Vegan Catering with live music, dancing and a cruelty-free silent auction.
Sunday, July 26 
6 - 9 p.m. (boarding promptly at 5:30 p.m.)
For tickets, click here

Sept. 16-17
Sustainable Cleveland is presenting its seventh annual Sustainability Summit this year. Participants design and develop action plans on a variety of topics to create a more thriving and resilient Cleveland region. This year's speakers include Naomi Davis, founder of Chicago's Blacks in Green, and Marcus Eriksen, who took a five-month journey down the Mississippi River on a homemade raft which led him to a career studying the ecological impacts of plastic marine pollution.
For more info on Summit 2015, and to propose your own Innovation Session, click here.

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.



(ONLY between the regular business hours of 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday - Saturday 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