July 27th 2015 Newsletter

The Weekly Menu

What you can roughly expect to receive each week:

Here’s where we list what is going to be in the weekly shares.  What we think we will harvest when writing the newsletter – may not necessarily be what’s actually ready on harvest day.  We’ll do our best to get it right!

This week: Carrots (they are getting smaller now), beans, garlic, scallions, peppers, herbs and greens.

Now that Summer is finally here….

We don’t have air conditioning in our house….. in fact, it’s one of those houses that’s hotter inside than out.  Which kind of works for us – as if you’re going to be hot, you might as well be outside and doing things than inside…. hot and bored.  Also, the transition between going inside and out isn’t as dramatic.  I think your body acclimates to where you are and really, Summer isn’t that bad when you don’t have air conditioning to compare it to.  That said, I’m glad I’m not in Florida now!

It didn’t take long for me to say it – but we could use a bit of rain!  We had the irrigation running on the tomatoes, peppers, and cucurbits (cucumbers and summer squash).  Matt griped a bit about the tomato stakes being pounded through the irrigation hose and the main manifold nestled in a bed of extra poisonous looking poison ivy.  But these guys are all troopers and are stepping up to the challenge.

We say, once we get through August, we are over the hump, and after the 2nd week in September, things get easier.  Although I’ve never run one, I liken veggie farming to running a marathon.  For us, there’s this point (especially for the newbie apprentices) where you wonder how much more you can take; how many hot days, late nights, early mornings, weeds, poison ivy, deer damage, insect infestations, and back aches can you take?  But we just push on a little harder and that’s when we can see the finish line.  The amazing heirloom tomatoes and sungold cherry tomatoes give us that extra ‘umphh’ as we cruise on to the ending…. light weight crops!  Kale, lettuce, arugula, and spinach! and the beautiful colors of fall that we are blessed with here in Western PA!

IMPORTANT – Blueberries!

Hunter Farms, in Erie, has started picking Organic Blueberries!  These are the best around, although comparatively, a little pricy.  It’s definatly worth it – as these are the sweetest, biggest blueberries you’ll ever have.

You can still order a flat of 12 pints for $65 or buy individual pints for $5.50 (limited).  (They freeze super well!)  We sell them at the farmers market for $6 and they fly off the table!

Just email jen@blackberrymeadows.com and place your order, along with your pick up date (especially if you’re a 1/2 share).  Blueberry season just began up in Erie, so we should be taking orders for  couple of weeks.

CSA Potluck August 15th -Sign up now!

Click here for the Link

We had a nice turn out for this past potluck – and we really lucked out with the rain.  Everyone had a chance to make their own pizza, which was lots of fun!

Play Date at the Farm!

Starting on the first friday in August (the 7th), we’ll be hosting a playdate here at the farm.  We’ll try doing morning sessions: 9:30 – 12:30, and just for the month of August.  More details to come – but in general, we’d like to invite you and you’re kids (2 1/2 – 8 years old?) to come out to the farm for a play date.  If you’re a CSA member and would like your kids to get more “farm time” getting dirty, visiting animals and playing on the farm for a couple of hours, you’re invited.  We’ll see how this goes and then decide what kind of structure and time frame works best for us all.  Check in with me if you think you and your kids will attend!

Here’s a couple interesting links to articles about farm exposure and allergies:

Hay Fever

New York Times Article

Local Goods:

Frankferd Farms – These guys are great!  What a treasure to have here in Western PA – A distributer of natural and organic goods!!  Place an order with them at the end of the month and we’ll have it on hand at your next CSA pick-up.  Give Jen a heads up that you placed an order.

Natrona Bottling Co. – Brewed fresh here in Natrona, this beverage is High Fructose Corn Syrup Free and Local!  If you’re gonna eat junk food – it might as well be local junk food!

Allegro Hearth Bakery Fresh bread and sweets available at the farm pickup only.  Made fresh every Tuesday night – amazing stuff!

Jarosinski Farm – we’re excited to be working with Kevin, a young fellow in Buffalo Township who is tending high quality pasture raised chickens for eggs and meat.

Kopar Honey Farm – talk about local!  The Kopars keep bees on our farm, as well as other locations in southwestern, PA.

Clarion River Organics – we purchase potatoes, watermelon, winter squash and other items from them that we may not be growing this year.

Brenkel’s Organic Farm – in Zelienople, supplies us with a few veggies too. 

Conneautee Creamery – Artisan cheeses made from grass fed cows.

Harmony Hill Farm – supplies us with pasture raised, grass fed beef.  We’ll have ground beef on hand at $7/lb.

Northwoods Ranch – located in Gibsonia area, this farm specialies in all pasture raised, Non-GMO and soy free beef and pork.  They raise heritage breeds of pigs and Highland Cattle for beef.  Currently, we only have ground beef from these guys.

Hunter Farms –  keeps us supplied with the best Certified Organic Blueberries  around.  They usually start up in July.  

Una Biological – creams, salves, and balms.  All made in small batches, with organic and some locally sourced ingredients.

Value added from the Farm

We dabble in a few hand crafted items.  We’ll purchase fair trade, organic, green coffee beans and roast them in our wood oven.   

We just made some fantastic Garlic Salt this spring.  Mixed with high quality Himalayan Salt – it’s great for a seasoning on most meals and as an addition to popcorn!

Thanks for choosing our CSA.  We strive to grow nutrient dense, wholesome foods for you.  We think what we do is hard work – but important for our family, friends, and community.  There’s a few things that we find important: growing good food, participating in the local economy, being good stewards to the environment, providing our community with access to a farm, farm animals and the outdoors, and teaching new and beginning farmers what we know.  By being a CSA member and supporting our endeavors, you’re helping us to achieve our goals.  Thanks!!



Sincerely,



Your Farmers,

Greg, Jen, Evelyn, Matt, Sam, Dawn and Haven

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

July 20th 2015 Newsletter

The Weekly Menu

What you can roughly expect to receive each week:

Here’s where we list what is going to be in the weekly shares.  What we think we will harvest when writing the newsletter – may not necessarily be what’s actually ready on harvest day.  We’ll do our best to get it right!

This week: Carrots, beans, cucumbers, garlic, scallions, cabbage? , purslane, maybe more, but. . . . it’s getting tough out there with all the rain in June/July!  

Confirmed: It’s hot out!

I think there’s times that I get so wrapped up in the current drama of the farm (too much rain), that I forget how quickly things can change.  We’ve had 3 days of hot muggy weather and I’m already thinking about irrigation….  That said, if we can squeeze by with a few more days of dry weather, Greg is going to have marathon tractor work.  There’s so much that needs to be mowed (brush hogged), roto-tilled, mulched and planted.  We have one field (about 1/2 acre) of kale and another of cabbage and broccoli to be planted for the fall.  I’ve got to get back onto my succession planting of beans (can be seeded up until mid-august), carrots and beets.  It’s also time to get leeks into the ground and dig garlic up.  Just one week of dry weather would be great!  We’ll take hot and muggy if we have to!

IMPORTANT – Blueberries!

Hunter Farms, in Erie, has started picking Blueberries!  These are the best around, although comparatively, a little pricy.  It’s definatly worth it – as these are the sweetest, biggest blueberries you’ll ever have.

For next week, you can order a flat of 12 pints for $65 or buy individual pints for $5.50.  (They freeze super well!)  We sell them at the farmers market for $6 and they fly off the table!

Just email jen@blackberrymeadows.com and place your order, along with your pick up date (especially if you’re a 1/2 share).  Blueberry season just began up in Erie, so we should be taking orders for  couple of weeks.

Here’s Evelyn, hocking blueberries in 2014!

CSA Potluck July 18th -Stay tuned for the next one!

We had a nice turn out for this past potluck – and we really lucked out with the rain.  Everyone had a chance to make their own pizza, which was lots of fun!  Please stay tuned for the next date!

Market District as our CSA member?

An amazing thing happened this year.  Giant Eagle Market District in Waterworks subscribed to our CSA.  This pilot is a bold statement about our hometown grocer making an investment in our farm.  Our economic risk and stress levels go down as the number of shares we sell increases.  Ideally, the CSA subscriptions would pay for our cost of operations for the whole year, allowing us to make profits on farmers markets and supplying Penns Corner which are critical to expanding the farm operations and acquiring new tools and training.  That said, when we have lean years, the markets don’t get priority, our CSA members do!

As a large and efficient food retailer, Giant Eagle is making this risky investment along side all of our subscribers!  With all the rain we have been getting, it’s uncertain what kinds of crops are going to make it through till fall… yet Giant Eagle is taking on some of the risk with all of us.  It makes us feel proud to be from Pittsburgh, where our locally owned grocery store won’t settle for simply purchasing wholesale from the local farmers. Wholesale, while the dominant method for selling produce for most farmers, simply doesn’t provide the ‘risk management’ because the farmers don’t get paid if the crop fails.

CSA on the other hand is a commitment to pay for the service of producing food… and this preseason payment ensures that the farm will continue to operate year after year.  It is a risk management plan that a farmer can rely on because the subscriptions are paid regardless of the harvest.  Our responsibility as farmers is to ensure that everyone gets an abundance of crops, all on an equal level. We also strive tp provide the food in a way that inspires community interaction, in the barn, in the fields, around the table.

At the grocery level, this type of investment is extremely unique.  Marty’s Market in the Strip District was the first grocer to pilot this model for one year with us in 2013. With one store front, and a small and flexible staff, they were able to make it work.  Giant Eagle is a bit of a different phenomenon.  The accounting departments in large companies are known, encouraged, and even required to knit-pick every transaction, ensuring that money isn’t spent frivolously and that a known quantity of inventory is received and “accounted” for in the ledgers.

A subscription to sellable inventory simply isn’t done.  We cannot predict what will be harvested, when it will ripen or how many weeks we will have it… a situation that would ordinarily drive accountants crazy!  However, because we strive to provide a weekly share value of the distributions which exceeds the average weekly subscription cost, our produce goes to our subscribers typically below wholesale value.  

The theory we are testing is whether Giant Eagle can make profits on the produce being sold out of the shares we are delivering. We have our fingers crossed that all goes well with this pilot.  If it does, our regional produce sections could wind up containing an abundance of local farm products from regional farms within the next few years.

Play Date at the Farm!

Starting on the first friday in August (the 7th), we’ll be hosting a playdate here at the farm.  We’ll try doing morning sessions: 9:30 – 12:30, and just for the month of August.  More details to come – but in general, we’d like to invite you and you’re kids (2 1/2 – 8 years old?) to come out to the farm for a play date.  If you’re a CSA member and would like your kids to get more “farm time” getting dirty, visiting animals and playing on the farm for a couple of hours, you’re invited.  We’ll see how this goes and then decide what kind of structure and time frame works best for us all.  Check in with me if you think you and your kids will attend!

Here’s a couple interesting links to articles about farm exposure and allergies:

Hay Fever

New York Times Article

Local Goods:

Frankferd Farms – These guys are great!  What a treasure to have here in Western PA – A distributer of natural and organic goods!!  Place an order with them at the end of the month and we’ll have it on hand at your next CSA pick-up.  Give Jen a heads up that you placed an order.

Natrona Bottling Co. – Brewed fresh here in Natrona, this beverage is High Fructose Corn Syrup Free and Local!  If you’re gonna eat junk food – it might as well be local junk food!

Allegro Hearth Bakery Fresh bread and sweets available at the farm pickup only.  Made fresh every Tuesday night – amazing stuff!

Jarosinski Farm – we’re excited to be working with Kevin, a young fellow in Buffalo Township who is tending high quality pasture raised chickens for eggs and meat.

Kopar Honey Farm – talk about local!  The Kopars keep bees on our farm, as well as other locations in southwestern, PA.

Clarion River Organics – we purchase potatoes, watermelon, winter squash and other items from them that we may not be growing this year.

Brenkel’s Organic Farm – in Zelienople, supplies us with a few veggies too. 

Conneautee Creamery – Artisan cheeses made from grass fed cows.

Harmony Hill Farm – supplies us with pasture raised, grass fed beef.  We’ll have ground beef on hand at $7/lb.

Northwoods Ranch – located in Gibsonia area, this farm specialies in all pasture raised, Non-GMO and soy free beef and pork.  They raise heritage breeds of pigs and Highland Cattle for beef.  Currently, we only have ground beef from these guys.

Hunter Farms –  keeps us supplied with the best Certified Organic Blueberries  around.  They usually start up in July.  

Una Biological – creams, salves, and balms.  All made in small batches, with organic and some locally sourced ingredients.

Value added from the Farm

We dabble in a few hand crafted items.  We’ll purchase fair trade, organic, green coffee beans and roast them in our wood oven.   

We just made some fantastic Garlic Salt this spring.  Mixed with high quality Himalayan Salt – it’s great for a seasoning on most meals and as an addition to popcorn!

Try our Dulce De Leche!  Look in the frozen section for $3.50  1/2 lb packages of homemade sweetness.  Made with milk from our lovely cows and organic sugar and lots of time.

Culinary Tips and Tricks:

Cooking and Preserving ideas – among other culinary hints for produce from the farm:

I think we’ll be hitting you again with Purslane.  Here’s another recipe for a turkish dish – yogurt and purslane.  I bet it may taste similar to a cucumber Raita.

I’m sure you’ll have no problem cooking up fresh beans.  They are the best!  But here’s an old standby recipe for a great bean salad: 

Summer Green Bean Salad

Prepare:

¼  cup pine nuts (roasted on a dry skillet)

1 lb green beans (boiled, then rinsed with cold water)

Combine in a large bowl:

3 Tbs olive oil

1 small onion, diced

3 Tbs white wine vinegar

½  tsp Dijon mustard

2 medium scallions, chopped

2 Tbs fresh dill, chopped

1 Tbs lemon zest

Salt & Pepper

Add green beans and top with roasted pine nuts. Chill.

Thanks for choosing our CSA.  We strive to grow nutrient dense, wholesome foods for you.  We think what we do is hard work – but important for our family, friends, and community.  There’s a few things that we find important: growing good food, participating in the local economy, being good stewards to the environment, providing our community with access to a farm, farm animals and the outdoors, and teaching new and beginning farmers what we know.  By being a CSA member and supporting our endeavors, you’re helping us to achieve our goals.  Thanks!!



Sincerely,



Your Farmers,

Greg, Jen, Evelyn, Matt, Sam, Dawn and Haven

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

July 13th 2015 Newsletter

The Weekly Menu

What you can roughly expect to receive each week:

Here’s where we list what is going to be in the weekly shares.  What we think we will harvest when writing the newsletter – may not necessarily be what’s actually ready on harvest day.  We’ll do our best to get it right!

This week: Scapes (almost done!) carrots, cabbage, chard, purslane, maybe more, but. . . . it’s getting tough out there with all this rain!  

Summer is here, right?

Last week we had about 3 1/2 inches of rain.  This upcoming week looks rather wet too.  After talking with other farmers at the markets and commiserating, it sounds like we’re all going to be in the same boat pretty soon.  The multitude of overcast days (no sun) and cool weather are slowing crop growth and spreading disease.  The excess rain has leached away our fertilizers and we’ll have to side-dress everything for a boost.  Luckily – that deer fence is doing its job and we’re not losing crops to deer as much as we have in the past!

It’s times like this that the strength of “community supported agriculture” comes through.  You all have invested in our farm and are prepared to take the good with the bad.  I’m starting to worry that harvests may be lean for a couple of weeks until some crops come in:  Our tomatoes are looking great (no Late Blight, knock on wood) and the beans are full of flowers.

We’ve got watermelons, cantaloupes, and winter squash coming along – but no where near harvesting stage.  Our summer squash, cucumbers, and peppers are looking good, but still need a few more weeks till harvest.  We will most likely buy in some items to fill the CSA until our crops bring things up to par.  It’s stressful, and not fun to have something so out of control as soggy, weedy fields and a bunch of folks depending on us!

So far you all have been supportive (and seem happy with your shares), but I’m anxious about that coming to a screeching halt and you not prepared for the real reason why.  We hope to make up for any deficit in the CSA later in the season.

Hopefully this isn’t too much of a downer newsletter – I try to keep it real and not overly sanguine!

Sam had friends visit from Brooklyn NY this weekend.  They pushed up their sleeves and put a hurtin’ on the weeds in our bean patch.  We’ve got 8 triple rows of yellow wax and royal burgundy beans on their way to fruition!  Thanks guys!!

CSA Potluck July 18th

Please click on this link https://www.eventbrite.com/e/blackberry-meadows-summer-potluck-tickets-17665562172 to attend our CSA potluck.  It’s  free event – but by signing  up through eventbrite, we can help determine what kinds of dishes we’ll have.

The last potluck was a raging success and we hope this one will be too!!  Hopefully the weather will be nice for us!

Invite friends, bring kids, games, picnic blankets/ chairs and an appetite!

Did you see Sundays Paper?  We’re in the news!

http://triblive.com/lifestyles/fooddrink/8592820-74/farm-blackberry-organic#axzz3fhXuwTg4

Play Date at the Farm!

Starting on the first friday in August (the 7th), we’ll be hosting a playdate here at the farm.  More details to come – but in general, we’d like to invite you and you’re kids (2 1/2 – 8 years old?) to come out to the farm for a play date.  If you’re a CSA member and would like your kids to get more “farm time” getting dirty, visiting animals and playing on the farm for a couple of hours, you’re invited.  We’ll see how this goes and then decide what kind of structure and time frame works best for us all.  Check in with me if you think you and your kids will attend!

Pasture Raised Beef:

We are going to take a Heifer to be processed this week.  If you’re interested in buying some pasture raised grass fed beef – let me know.  It won’t be ready until next week or the week after.  Again, like the piggies, you can buy a 1/4 or a 1/2 of the heifer.  We’re charging $3.50 per lb hanging weight.  You’ll then have to pay the processing fee.  This is our first time having a heifer processed, so I’m  not sure what to expect weight wise – but I’m thinking she’ll come out to a hanging weight of 400-500 lbs…??  Let me know if you’re interested!

Local Goods:

Frankferd Farms – These guys are great!  What a treasure to have here in Western PA – A distributer of natural and organic goods!!  Place an order with them at the end of the month and we’ll have it on hand at your next CSA pick-up.  Give Jen a heads up that you placed an order.

Natrona Bottling Co. – Brewed fresh here in Natrona, this beverage is High Fructose Corn Syrup Free and Local!  If you’re gonna eat junk food – it might as well be local junk food!

Allegro Hearth Bakery Fresh bread and sweets available at the farm pickup only.  Made fresh every Tuesday night – amazing stuff!

Jarosinski Farm – we’re excited to be working with Kevin, a young fellow in Buffalo Township who is tending high quality pasture raised chickens for eggs and meat.

Kopar Honey Farm – talk about local!  The Kopars keep bees on our farm, as well as other locations in southwestern, PA.

Clarion River Organics – we purchase potatoes, watermelon, winter squash and other items from them that we may not be growing this year.

Conneautee Creamery – Artisan cheeses made from grass fed cows.

Harmony Hill Farm – supplies us with pasture raised, grass fed beef.  We’ll have ground beef on hand at $7/lb.

Hunter Farms –  keeps us supplied with the best Certified Organic Blueberries  around.  They usually start up in July.  

Una Biological – creams, salves, and balms.  All made in small batches, with organic and some locally sourced ingredients.

Value added from the Farm

We dabble in a few hand crafted items.  We’ll purchase fair trade, organic, green coffee beans and roast them in our wood oven.  



We also make cheese, yogurt, butter, ice cream, chocolate milk, kefir, sour cream, ricotta, skim milk and full fat milk.  If you’d like to purchase any of our raw grass-fed dairy products, you must become a member of C.A.R.E. first – just $20 a year for membership.   Ask Jen for more details.  We have limited supplies.  

We just made some fantastic Garlic Salt this spring.  Mixed with high quality Himalayan Salt – it’s great for a seasoning on most meals and as an addition to popcorn!

Try our Dulce De Leche!  Look in the frozen section for $3.50  1/2 lb packages of homemade sweetness.  Made with milk from our lovely cows and organic sugar and lots of time.

Culinary Tips and Tricks:

Cooking and Preserving ideas – among other culinary hints for produce from the farm:

Something you’ll be getting this week – which you may not be used to is Purslane.  Its a super green that is just becoming popular.  Here’s a nice recipe for Purslane and Parsley salad.

It’s a great source of Omega 3 fatty acids.  “Purslane is somewhat crunchy and has a slight lemony taste. Some people liken it to watercress or spinach, and it can substitute for spinach in many recipes. Young, raw leaves and stems are tender and are good in salads and sandwiches. They can also be lightly steamed or stir-fried. Purslane’s high level of pectin (known to lower cholesterol) thickens soups and stews.”

from: Mother Earth News:

Thanks for choosing our CSA.  We strive to grow nutrient dense, wholesome foods for you.  We think what we do is hard work – but important for our family, friends, and community.  There’s a few things that we find important: growing good food, participating in the local economy, being good stewards to the environment, providing our community with access to a farm, farm animals and the outdoors, and teaching new and beginning farmers what we know.  By being a CSA member and supporting our endeavors, you’re helping us to achieve our goals.  Thanks!!



Sincerely,



Your Farmers,

Greg, Jen, Evelyn, Matt, Sam, Dawn and Haven

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

July 5th 2015 Newsletter

The Weekly Menu

What you can roughly expect to receive each week:

Here’s where we list what is going to be in the weekly shares.  What we think we will harvest when writing the newsletter – may not necessarily be what’s actually ready on harvest day.  We’ll do our best to get it right!

This week:  New! Kohlrabi and Cabbage, Kale, Turnips, Garlic Scapes, Beets and Carrots and possibly Basil

Happy July!

With a rainy June behind us, we are comfortably into our summer CSA groove.  A routine of chores, harvests, and markets is making time fly by, so all the education and training we’ve all invested in is paying off.

Jen and I say that “Farm intuition” is what we teach our apprentices.  Farms can be very dangerous places and teaching people, all of whom have never lived on a farm, how to stay safe or prevent innocently hurting another because of a misplaced tool, or unlocked gate.  Most farmers learn this growing up; they learn how to notice things.  But here, the apprentices get a 3-month crash course before we get into the summer groove.

This time of year, things start moving pretty fast, and the crew knows their chores and routines enough to be confident and capable in just about any aspect of the farm.  As a Janitor, its now that I feel the most joy in being part of a community driven operation, and especially part of a ‘crew’.  Our apprentices are running the place, and our members are gobbling up the harvests!  Now Jen and I focus on keeping the business, the buildings, the markets and the equipment in top working order so we can thrive!

If you’ve signed up for a summer share, fall share, or winter share – (meaning you start later than the rest of the CSA members):  We’ll let you know when your first pick up will be.

Future Farmers: Haven Schrock

Hey farm fans! My name is Haven. I am a 26 year old former city slicker and am somewhat surprised to find myself on a farm. I grew up in the heart of Minneapolis, MN, and I loved city living. However, I’ve been traveling a lot in the past four years and have developed a deep interest in where our food comes from and the impact of food production on our world and in our communities. 

After leaving Indiana, where I graduated from Goshen College, I moved to Nashville TN and worked once a week on an organic farm while living in a house with 14 other people. It was pretty chaotic with so many people, so the farm was a peaceful respite, but I never really knew what needed to be done and sometimes felt like a burden. I needed a change of pace and left to teach English at a high school in Bangkok, but the seed had been planted in me and I wanted to learn more about growing food. 

I moved to Denver afterwards and worked in a local garden store, but the retail side of growing wasn’t for me; I just wasn’t learning enough. I then travelled to Brazil and had hoped to do WWOOF on some farms, but they seemed to want experienced help and I couldn’t justifiably say I was their man. Upon returning I moved to Pittsburgh to live with my brother, and resolved to make a strong effort to learn how to farm. I found Blackberry Meadows and now am happily getting my hands dirty, being outside, and learning day by day what it takes to be a farmer. It’s never easy, but it is certainly rewarding.

I am still a city boy at heart, and hope that I can apply what I learn here to smaller scale urban farming. I long for the day that we see gardens growing in every nook of our cities, replacing our clean cut grassy lawns with abundant  healthy veggies. I hope to one day teach other young city folks that growing food and getting a little dirty is very fun and an immeasurably valuable skill to have.

That’s all from me for now folks, but there is so much more I’d like to talk with you about. So why don’t ya come on out to the markets and let’s talk about food and plants and life! 

Peace!

Our beans are looking great and have a bunch of flowers on them.  Just a couple more weeks and we’ll be ready to harvest.  This is particular exciting, as the deer have typically harvested the majority of our bean crop.  We owe a big old shout out of THANKS! to the folks who invested (bought 5 years of CSAs ahead of time) in the farm last year.  This deer fence has been a life saver!  Beans, carrots, beets, lettuce – it’s all here!

Local Goods:

Frankferd Farms – These guys are great!  What a treasure to have here in Western PA – A distributer of natural and organic goods!!  Place an order with them at the end of the month and we’ll have it on hand at your next CSA pick-up.  Give Jen a heads up that you placed an order.

Natrona Bottling Co. – Brewed fresh here in Natrona, this beverage is High Fructose Corn Syrup Free and Local!  If you’re gonna eat junk food – it might as well be local junk food!

Allegro Hearth Bakery Fresh bread and sweets available at the farm pickup only.  Made fresh every Tuesday night – amazing stuff!

Jarosinski Farm – we’re excited to be working with Kevin, a young fellow in Buffalo Township who is tending high quality pasture raised chickens for eggs and meat.

Kopar Honey Farm – talk about local!  The Kopars keep bees on our farm, as well as other locations in southwestern, PA.

Clarion River Organics – we purchase potatoes, watermelon, winter squash and other items from them that we may not be growing this year.

Conneautee Creamery – Artisan cheeses made from grass fed cows.

Harmony Hill Farm – supplies us with pasture raised, grass fed beef.  We’ll have ground beef on hand at $7/lb.

Hunter Farms –  keeps us supplied with the best Certified Organic Blueberries  around.  They usually start up in July.  

Una Biological – creams, salves, and balms.  All made in small batches, with organic and some locally sourced ingredients.

Value added from the Farm

We dabble in a few hand crafted items.  We’ll purchase fair trade, organic, green coffee beans and roast them in our wood oven.  



We also make cheese, yogurt, butter, ice cream, chocolate milk, kefir, sour cream, ricotta, skim milk and full fat milk.  If you’d like to purchase any of our raw grass-fed dairy products, you must become a member of C.A.R.E. first – just $20 a year for membership.   Ask Jen for more details.  We have limited supplies.  

We just made some fantastic Garlic Salt this spring.  Mixed with high quality Himalayan Salt – it’s great for a seasoning on most meals and as an addition to popcorn!

Try our Dulce De Leche!  Look in the frozen section for $3.50  1/2 lb packages of homemade sweetness.  Made with milk from our lovely cows and organic sugar and lots of time.

Culinary Tips and Tricks:

Cooking and Preserving ideas – among other culinary hints for produce from the farm:

This week – you’ll be getting purple Kohlrabi.  It’s super tasty – almost like eating broccoli hearts – crispy, crunchy and …. tastes like broccoli.  Just pull off the leaves (you can cook them up too), peel the thin skin, slice, sprinkle with salt and eat em up!  

You can also grate them and make a good coleslaw, hash browns, or boiled and cooked with mashed potatoes.  

Here are a few links too – with this one – try using your garlic scapes in place of garlic cloves.  Roasted Kohlrabi

Epicurious.com is really one of my favorite go-to websites.  How about lentils and kohlrabi?

Use this recipe for all of your root crops coming in – particularly, turnips, kohlrabi (not technically a root crop), and potatoes (which we don’t have yet).  A great Mashed Root Veggie Medely.

Enjoy!

Same news from Last Week – but still looking for reservations!! (for the benefit of the 1/2 shares, who may not read each newsletter)

Here Piggy, Piggy!

We got our new piggies last Thursday.  They are cute now, but they lose their appeal after about 3 months.  It takes about 6 months to grow these guys out to full size (they should be ready in November/December).  They are a Berkshire Pig – which is known for its ability to do well on pasture.  They are also known for juiciness and flavor of the pink-hued and heavily marbled meat. The high fat content makes it suitable for long cooking and high-temperature cooking (and great for bacon). Although our pigs are leaner, as they will be on a pasture based diet with grain, farm veggie and raw milk/whey buffet.

We’ve been offering to sell them as 1/4, 1/2 and whole hog.  But when it comes to a quarter of a pig, you’ll have to decided between ham or bacon, or shoulder roast vs loin roast…..  We can discuss details later.  

We’ll charge $4/lb hanging weight. Thoma’s Meat Market does our processing for us.  The pigs, on average will weigh about 175 – 200 lbs The Hanging Weight refers to the weight of the animal as it hangs in the butcher’s cooler once the head, hide, feet, organs and blood are removed.

When the times comes, I’ll put you in touch with Thoma’s and you can discuss with them, the types of cuts and packaging you’re looking for.  You’ll then pay Thoma’s about (based on 2014 prices) 60 cents per pound for the meat to be cut, wrapped, and frozen.  If you want any meat to be cured, that’s an additional 65 cents per pound.  

Here’s a great tutorial on buying a 1/2 a steer – but the same info is applicable to pork  

We are asking for a $100 deposit for the pork to reserve yourself some meat!

Thanks for choosing our CSA.  We strive to grow nutrient dense, wholesome foods for you.  We think what we do is hard work – but important for our family, friends, and community.  There’s a few things that we find important: growing good food, participating in the local economy, being good stewards to the environment, providing our community with access to a farm, farm animals and the outdoors, and teaching new and beginning farmers what we know.  By being a CSA member and supporting our endeavors, you’re helping us to achieve our goals.  Thanks!!



Sincerely,



Your Farmers,

Greg, Jen, Evelyn, Matt, Sam, Dawn and Haven

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

June 28th 2015 Newsletter

The Weekly Menu

What you can roughly expect to receive each week:

Here’s where we list what is going to be in the weekly shares.  What we think we will harvest when writing the newsletter – may not necessarily be what’s actually ready on harvest day.  We’ll do our best to get it right!

This week:  Kale, Turnip/Greens, Garlic Scapes, Beets and Carrots and possibly Cilantro

It’s wet here.

Well, it’s been wet, as most of you already know.  It’s a mounting delimma for us here – as the fields are sodden and the weeds are growing. The crops we planted in May have been holding their own (the carrots and beets are doing fantastically, and the tomatoes and peppers are coming along nicely).  That said, if things don’t turn around soon, we’re going to hit a lull.  With all this rain, we don’t have an opportunity to plant some the faster growing crops – beans (we already have 8 rows in), lettuce, more greens, or radishes.  We’ve hand transplanted our squash, and cucumbers and will be hand transplanting our winter squash soon (just in time for halloween pumpkins).  Our weeds are taking over the farm.  Now, this is a pretty typical situation for us – as it’s a weedy farm to being with ….. but we don’t spray herbicides and totally rely on (in order of effectiveness and efficiency) 1. tractor cultivation 2. mulching (plastic or straw) and, 3. hand weeding.  Not all crops can be mulched, like beets and carrots, so they must be cultivated or hand weeded.  As I said earlier, it’s been too wet to get tractors into the fields (they’ll compact our soil and/or get stuck) so we’re down to hand weeding and that’s just crazy!  (if anyone wants to volunteer some hours hand weeding – get in touch!)

Ce la vie.  We do what we can and try to not get bogged down in the hardships of farming.  We’re excited to harvest those beets and carrots this week.  We’ve maxed out the bok choi and lettuce crops for now – and need to wait for the next succession to mature (I’m sure you don’t mind a break from bok choi!).  We should also be harvesting kohlrabi – which, if you’re looking for more greens to eat, you can cook them up too.



If you’ve signed up for a summer share, fall share, or winter share – (meaning you start later than the rest of the CSA members):  We’ll let you know when your first pick up will be.

Awhile back, Dawn tried her hand at preserving violets: candied violets and violet jelly!

Future Farmers:

My name’s Dawn Elaine. I’m 21. I’ve worked in retail, as a computer lab aide, a college-level computer science tutor, in a cash office, and I’ve been laid off three times within a three year period. I’m probably not what you’d think of when you think of farming material, and when I applied to be an apprentice at Blackberry Meadows, I was more than a little worried that my lack of related experience might not work in my favor, that they’d tell me that they didn’t think that I’d be a good fit. As it was, they were my only shot at interning on a farm since I don’t have a driver’s license, which pretty much everyone else requires. My family thought I was crazy for wanting to do this. My mother told me that farming was a waste of my intellect.

It turns out, out of everyone on the farm, I am the least educated. And all of those other jobs I had where supposedly my intellect was unwasted, were wasting me away. I would feel mentally drained after only a few hours of sedentary monotony, and knew that eventually I would pay the price for that lifestyle physically. I wanted to get away from offices and cash registers and work somewhere I could see nature more than just on my days off and develop useful skills. Even in the first couple of weeks here, even before what I was, what we call around here “farm strong,” I noticed that I had more energy. I found out all of the terrifying things they said to try to scare away all but the most earnest of apprentices were mostly true, but that my body and mind could grow to handle the new challenges each day brings.

Giant Eagle – Market District at Waterworks

We’ve started something new!  In early Spring, we were approached by Giant Eagle to sell produce in their Market District store in Fox Chapel.  As most CSAs are experiencing in our area, our numbers were a bit down.  It was a great opportunity for us to sell bulk (10 shares) CSA shares to Giant Eagle.  We made our first delivery on Friday, for the produce to be on display this past weekend.  There’s still some kinks to work out -but really, along with Giant Eagle, we’re spearheading the opportunity to get produce from more local organic farms out to the general public.

Each store could reach out to their nearest organic farm, bring in a few CSA shares and get top-of-the-line local organic produce out to the people and help make more small farms profitable; achieving the goal of promoting a local economy based on nutrient dense good local food.  It’s a win-win and we’re happy and excited to see where this goes!  (photo courtesy of Giant Eagle)

Local Goods:

Frankferd Farms – These guys are great!  What a treasure to have here in Western PA – A distributer of natural and organic goods!!  Place an order with them at the end of the month and we’ll have it on hand at your next CSA pick-up.  Give Jen a heads up that you placed an order.

Natrona Bottling Co. – Brewed fresh here in Natrona, this beverage is High Fructose Corn Syrup Free and Local!  If you’re gonna eat junk food – it might as well be local junk food!

Allegro Hearth Bakery Fresh bread and sweets available at the farm pickup only.  Made fresh every Tuesday night – amazing stuff!

Jarosinski Farm – we’re excited to be working with Kevin, a young fellow in Buffalo Township who is tending high quality pasture raised chickens for eggs and meat.

Kopar Honey Farm – talk about local!  The Kopars keep bees on our farm, as well as other locations in southwestern, PA.

Clarion River Organics – we purchase potatoes, watermelon, winter squash and other items from them that we may not be growing this year.

Conneautee Creamery – Artisan cheeses made from grass fed cows.

Harmony Hill Farm – supplies us with pasture raised, grass fed beef.  We’ll have ground beef on hand at $7/lb.

Hunter Farms –  keeps us supplied with the best Certified Organic Blueberries  around.  They usually start up in July.  

Una Biological – creams, salves, and balms.  All made in small batches, with organic and some locally sourced ingredients.

Value added from the Farm

We dabble in a few hand crafted items.  We’ll purchase fair trade, organic, green coffee beans and roast them in our wood oven.  



We also make cheese, yogurt, butter, ice cream, chocolate milk, kefir, sour cream, ricotta, skim milk and full fat milk.  If you’d like to purchase any of our raw grass-fed dairy products, you must become a member of C.A.R.E. first – just $20 a year for membership.   Ask Jen for more details.  We have limited supplies.  

We just made some fantastic Garlic Salt this spring.  Mixed with high quality Himalayan Salt – it’s great for a seasoning on most meals and as an addition to popcorn!

Try our Dulce De Leche!  Look in the frozen section for $3.50  1/2 lb packages of homemade sweetness.  Made with milk from our lovely cows and organic sugar and lots of time.

Culinary Tips and Tricks:

Cooking and Preserving ideas – among other culinary hints for produce from the farm:

Our carrots are beautiful and so are the tops!  Here a recipe for Roasted Carrots and Carrot Top Pesto    Here’s another carrot top pesto recipe (consider replacing the garlic scares for green garlic). They are so beautiful – don’t be tempted to throw them out!  Just eat it!

Beets, of course, are great quartered, covered in olive oil and roasted in the oven until you can easily pierce with a fork.  Salt to taste.  Yum!

Here Piggy, Piggy!

We got our new piggies last Thursday.  They are cute now, but they lose their appeal after about 3 months.  It takes about 6 months to grow these guys out to full size (they should be ready in November/December).  They are a Berkshire Pig – which is known for its ability to do well on pasture.  They are also known for juiciness and flavor of the pink-hued and heavily marbled meat. The high fat content makes it suitable for long cooking and high-temperature cooking (and great for bacon). Although our pigs are leaner, as they will be on a pasture based diet with grain, farm veggie and raw milk/whey buffet.

We’ve been offering to sell them as 1/4, 1/2 and whole hog.  But when it comes to a quarter of a pig, you’ll have to decided between ham or bacon, or shoulder roast vs loin roast…..  We can discuss details later.  

We’ll charge $4/lb hanging weight. Thoma’s Meat Market does our processing for us.  The pigs, on average will weigh about 175 – 200 lbs The Hanging Weight refers to the weight of the animal as it hangs in the butcher’s cooler once the head, hide, feet, organs and blood are removed.

When the times comes, I’ll put you in touch with Thoma’s and you can discuss with them, the types of cuts and packaging you’re looking for.  You’ll then pay Thoma’s about (based on 2014 prices) 60 cents per pound for the meat to be cut, wrapped, and frozen.  If you want any meat to be cured, that’s an additional 65 cents per pound.  

Here’s a great tutorial on buying a 1/2 a steer – but the same info is applicable to pork  

We are asking for a $100 deposit for the pork to reserve yourself some meat!

Thanks for choosing our CSA.  We strive to grow nutrient dense, wholesome foods for you.  We think what we do is hard work – but important for our family, friends, and community.  There’s a few things that we find important: growing good food, participating in the local economy, being good stewards to the environment, providing our community with access to a farm, farm animals and the outdoors, and teaching new and beginning farmers what we know.  By being a CSA member and supporting our endeavors, you’re helping us to achieve our goals.  Thanks!!



Sincerely,



Your Farmers,Greg, Jen, Evelyn, Matt, Sam, Dawn and Haven

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

June 22nd 2015 Newsletter

The Weekly Menu

What you can roughly expect to receive each week:

Here’s where we list what is going to be in the weekly shares.  What we think we will harvest when writing the newsletter – may not necessarily be what’s actually ready on harvest day.  We’ll do our best to get it right!

This week:  Kale, Bok Choy, Lettuce, Herbs, Turnip/Greens, Garlic Scapes, and possibly cilantro.  We also may be able to pull together enough Kohlrabi for everyone.  If not, we’ll wait until next week.

When will the rain end?

In comparison to what else is going on in the rest of the world, we really can’t complain.  

That said, I will complain a little bit about the weather.  This past weekend we had a deluge of over 6 inches of rain within 48 hours.  Our farm is a soggy-wet-muddy mess!  Don’t let the image above confuse you – that rain gauge says 3 1/2″ – but that was just in between downpours.  

The pros of rain: we don’t have it irrigate the crops!  In general, they really love a good soaking.  Our cool season crops are loving it!  The lettuce, bok choy and kale are kicking butt!

The cons of rain: we can’t get into the fields with our tractors (they’ll compact the wet soil), if we could use the tractors we could cultivate the crops – getting ahead of the weeds, we could till the fields – prepping them for planting, we could plant cover crops to build our organic matter.  Instead, we’re hand transplanting and hand weeding.  

It seems to be the general trend for the past 4 or 5 years.  Spring is way too wet – then we get a dry spell.  We just have to go with the flow and do the best we can.  It’s hard to not get overwhelmed with the volume of work that we need to accomplish here.  It’s a big job – but somebodies got to do it!

For those of you who are picking up your CSA share for the first time this week:

If you’re coming to the farm to pick up: stop at the barn (at 7115 Ridge Rd) it will be open from 11am – 7 pm.  Just park by the old wooden barn and come in.  We’ll check your name off and give you an intro to our CSA system.  Bring your own bag please!



If you’re picking up at the Phipps Farmers Market: we’ll be at our market stand from 2:30pm – 6:30pm.   Swing by and pick up your veggies.  Bring your own bags please!  If you’d like us to bring down items that we sell in the barn – just let jen@blackberrymeadows.com know.  Each newsletter will list the items we have for sale.

If you’re picking up at the Mt Lebanon Farmers Market: We’ll be at our market stand on Saturday from 9 am – 12 pm.   Swing by and pick up your veggies.  Bring your own bags please!  If you’d like us to bring down items that we sell in the barn – just let jen@blackberrymeadows.com know.  Each newsletter will list the items we have for sale.



If you’re picking up at the Boyd Community Center, on Powers Run Rd: we’ll be there from 9 – 11 am.  We’re on the playground side of the building – in the little porch/alcove entrance into the building.  There’s some serious construction going on there now – so things may change – but we’ll keep you posted.  Bring your own bags and let me know if you’d like us to bring items for sale from the barn.  Just let jen@blackberrymeadows.com know.  Each newsletter will list the items we have for sale.



**If you’ve signed up for a 1/2 share:  If you haven’t picked up yet, then this is your week!  You are now considered an “even” share and should pick up your CSA this Wednesday and every other week after.



If you’ve signed up for a summer share, fall share, or winter share – (meaning you start later than the rest of the CSA members):  We’ll let you know when your first pick up will be.

Local Goods:

Frankferd Farms – These guys are great!  What a treasure to have here in Western PA – A distributer of natural and organic goods!!  Place an order with them at the end of the month and we’ll have it on hand at your next CSA pick-up.  Give Jen a heads up that you placed an order.

Natrona Bottling Co. – Brewed fresh here in Natrona, this beverage is High Fructose Corn Syrup Free and Local!  If you’re gonna eat junk food – it might as well be local junk food!

Allegro Hearth Bakery Fresh bread and sweets available at the farm pickup only.  Made fresh every Tuesday night – amazing stuff!

Jarosinski Farm – we’re excited to be working with Kevin, a young fellow in Buffalo Township who is tending high quality pasture raised chickens for eggs and meat.

Kopar Honey Farm – talk about local!  The Kopars keep bees on our farm, as well as other locations in southwestern, PA.

Clarion River Organics – we purchase potatoes, watermelon, winter squash and other items from them that we may not be growing this year.

Conneautee Creamery – Artisan cheeses made from grass fed cows.

Harmony Hill Farm – supplies us with pasture raised, grass fed beef.  We’ll have ground beef on hand at $7/lb.

Hunter Farms –  keeps us supplied with the best Certified Organic Blueberries  around.  They usually start up in July.  

Una Biological – creams, salves, and balms.  All made in small batches, with organic and some locally sourced ingredients.

Value added from the Farm

We dabble in a few hand crafted items.  We’ll purchase fair trade, organic, green coffee beans and roast them in our wood oven.  



We also make cheese, yogurt, butter, ice cream, chocolate milk, kefir, sour cream, ricotta, skim milk and full fat milk.  If you’d like to purchase any of our raw grass-fed dairy products, you must become a member of C.A.R.E. first – just $20 a year for membership.   Ask Jen for more details.  We have limited supplies.  

We just made some fantastic Garlic Salt this spring.  Mixed with high quality Himalayan Salt – it’s great for a seasoning on most meals and as an addition to popcorn!

Try our Dulce De Leche!  Look in the frozen section for $3.50  1/2 lb packages of homemade sweetness.  Made with milk from our lovely cows and organic sugar and lots of time.

Culinary Tips and Tricks:

Cooking and Preserving ideas – among other culinary hints for produce from the farm:

Here’s where we will provide you with our favorite recipes for some of the produce you will be getting each week.  We’ll also provide links to other helpful websites.  Feel free to share your recipes with us and we’ll pass them around our CSA community!

Last week I included a couple links to recipes for Garlic Scapes.  You’ll be getting them again this week – so do your research.  At the very least, just chop and use in place of garlic and/or onions.  

Now, onto Bok Choy.  One of my favorite Asian Greens, Bok Choy has a crispy stem and a mild flavored greens.  It’s good in a stir-fry or coated in toasted sesame oil and roasted in the oven.  Here’s a link to Martha Stewart’s recipes for Bok Choy and they all sound pretty tasty!

Pigs – we’ll be getting some little piggies soon – hopefully the beginning of this week.  They are great little composers and will eat up a ton of our veggie scraps.  We run them through the woods to root up acorns and help control the edge growth on our fields.   We feed them certified non-gmo grain and they get as much sun, fresh air and clean water has they can handle.  

We’l be selling them by the 1/2 or 1/4 hog.  And they won’t be ready until November or December.  Last year we sold them for around $4 hanging weight (we’ll stick close to that price this year).  This means that, on top of the $4 +/- that you’ll pay us,  you’ll also be paying the butcher to cut and wrap the hog into whatever pieces you desire.  We’ll work that out later.  Please let me know as soon as possible if you are interested in purchasing a 1/4, 1/2 or whole hog, as we’ll be getting them soon!  We are asking for a $100 deposit.  

Thanks for choosing our CSA.  We strive to grow nutrient dense, wholesome foods for you.  We think what we do is hard work – but important for our family, friends, and community.  There’s a few things that we find important: growing good food, participating in the local economy, being good stewards to the environment, providing our community with access to a farm, farm animals and the outdoors, and teaching new and beginning farmers what we know.  By being a CSA member and supporting our endeavors, you’re helping us to achieve our goals.  Thanks!!



Sincerely,



Your Farmers,Greg, Jen, Evelyn, Matt, Sam, Dawn and Haven

Posted in 2015 Newsletter | Leave a comment

June 14th 2015 Newsletter

Let the Veggies Begin!

Here’s where you’ll find all the info you’ll need to know about your first pick up:

For Your First Pick-Up:

Our fist pick up of the CSA will be on Wednesday June 17th and Saturday June 20th.  

If you’re coming to the farm to pick up: stop at the barn (at 7115 Ridge Rd) it will be open from 11am – 7 pm.  Just park by the old wooden barn and come in.  We’ll check your name off and give you an intro to our CSA system.  Bring your own bag please!



If you’re picking up at the Phipps Farmers Market: we’ll be at our market stand from 2:30pm – 6:30pm.   Swing by and pick up your veggies.  Bring your own bags please!  If you’d like us to bring down items that we sell in the barn – just let jen@blackberrymeadows.com know.  Each newsletter will list the items we have for sale.

If you’re picking up at the Mt Lebanon Farmers Market: We’ll be at our market stand on Saturday from 9 am – 12 pm.   Swing by and pick up your veggies.  Bring your own bags please!  If you’d like us to bring down items that we sell in the barn – just let jen@blackberrymeadows.com know.  Each newsletter will list the items we have for sale.



If you’re picking up at the Boyd Community Center, on Powers Run Rd: we’ll be there from 9 – 11 am.  We’re on the playground side of the building – in the little porch/alcove entrance into the building.  There’s some serious construction going on there now – so things may change – but we’ll keep you posted.  Bring your own bags and let me know if you’d like us to bring items for sale from the barn.  Just let jen@blackberrymeadows.com know.  Each newsletter will list the items we have for sale.



**If you’ve signed up for a 1/2 share:  We’ll let you know when your start date will be.  If you start on the first week, you’ll be an “odd share”, if you start on the second week, you’ll be an “even share”. ** Look for another email to follow.



If you’ve signed up for a summer share, fall share, or winter share – (meaning you start later than the rest of the CSA members):  We’ll let you know when your first pick up will be.

The Weekly Menu

What you can roughly expect to receive each week:

Here’s where we list what is going to be in the weekly shares.  What we think we will harvest when writing the newsletter – may not necessarily be what’s actually ready on harvest day.  We’ll do our best to get it right!

This week:  Kale, Bok Choy, Lettuce, Chives, Edible Flowers, Turnip Greens, Garlic Scapes, and possibly cilantro.

Local Goods:

Frankferd Farms – place an order with them at the end of the month and we’ll have it on hand at your CSA pick-up

Natrona Bottling Co. – Brewed fresh here in Natrona, this beverage is High Fructose Corn Syrup Free and Local!

Allegro Hearth Bakery- Fresh bread and sweets available at the farm pickup only.  

Jarosinski Farm – we’re excited to be working with Kevin, a young fellow in Buffalo Township who is tending high quality pasture raised chickens for eggs and meat.

Kopar Honey Farm – talk about local!  The Kopars keep bees on our farm, as well as other locations in southwestern, PA.

Clarion River Organics – we purchase potatoes, watermelon, winter squash and other items from them that we may not be growing this year.

Conneautee Creamery – grass fed cheeses.

Harmony Hill Farm – supplies us with pasture raised, grass fed beef.  We’ll have ground beef on hand at $7/lb.

Hunter Farms –  keeps us supplied with the best Certified Organic Blueberries  around.  They usually start up in July.  

Una Biological – creams, salves, and balms.  All made in small batches, with organic and some locally sourced ingredients.

Value added from the Farm

We dabble in a few hand crafted items.  We’ll purchase fair trade, organic, green coffee beans and roast them in our wood oven.  



We also make cheese, yogurt, butter, ice cream, chocolate milk, kefir, sour cream, ricotta, skim milk and full fat milk.  If you’d like to purchase any of our raw grass-fed dairy products, you must become a member of C.A.R.E. first – just $20 a year for membership.   Ask Jen for more details.  We have limited supplies.  

We just made some fantastic Garlic Salt this spring with our left over garlic cloves from 2015.  Mixed with high quality Himalayan Salt – it’s great for a seasoning on most meals and as an addition to popcorn! 



There will also be a few batches of Kombucha, water kefir, maybe some jams and jellies, salsas and canned tomato products.

Culinary Tips and Tricks:

Cooking and Preserving ideas – among other culinary hints for produce from the farm:

Here’s where we will provide you with our favorite recipes for some of the produce you will be getting each week.  We’ll also provide links to other helpful websites.  Feel free to share your recipes with us and we’ll pass them around our CSA community!

Gear up and educate yourself on Garlic Scapes.  There’s going to be a few weeks of scapes in your life and you’ll have to dive in a be prepared.  Luckily, they store extremely well;  just put them in a ziplock bag with a damp paper towel.  They’ll store in your fridge for a while.  Consider using them in place of garlic.  It’s great sautéed in stirfry, or omelets.  Once you have a stockpile, consider pickling them – Pickled Scapes are amazing (or take it a step further and try lacto-fermented garlic scapes)!  You can also make Garlic Scape Pesto too – yum!

Don’t be afraid of your greens either – in general, they are easy to sauté with a little salt and seasoning.  I’ll give out some recipes throughout the season.  

Be sure to sign up for our Dinner on the Farm event this month.  We’re hosting a “Taste of Italy” on June 27th.

We’ll take in the beauty of summer while dining al fresco. You don’t want to miss the chance to enjoy a meal made in our very own wood fire oven. Seating is limited so RSVP today! 

Thanks for choosing our CSA.  We strive to grow nutrient dense, wholesome foods for you.  We think what we do is hard work – but important for our family, friends, and community.  There’s a few things that we find important: growing good food, participating in the local economy, being good stewards to the environment, providing our community with access to a farm, farm animals and the outdoors, and teaching new and beginning farmers what we know.  By being a CSA member and supporting our endeavors, you’re helping us to achieve our goals.  Thanks!!



Sincerely,



Your Farmers,Greg, Jen, Evelyn, Matt, Sam, Dawn and Haven

 

 

Posted in 2015 Newsletter | Leave a comment