December 21st, 2021
What’s in this Week’s VEGGIE BOX: Carrots, Broccoli, turnips, Lettuce, Mandarins, Bay and pepper bunches, Cilantro, Tatsai plus a gift of lavender dryer sheets
Bread this week: Puligese OR French Baguette your choice of one
No deliveries December 25, 28, January 1, 4 & 8
Saturday December 25th boxes will be delivered on Tuesday December 21st
This week on the farm
The last story of the year, the last delivery of good humus produce and it feels so good to be shutting down for a few weeks. It has not been an easy year, but once again here we are at the end of yet another season, so we made it! I used to say to Jeff after each summer season "I will never do that again" but then we go into a California hibernation, lots more sleep on the winter short days of light, and then spring comes round and we do what we do one more time, forgetting the statement made when I was exhausted and done in from a summer harvest season.
This last Saturday was my rotation for working the Davis Farmers Market, it also was the last market of the year for us. Our stand was full of our jams and jellies, herbal teas and spice blends, our farm note cards, our homemade wreaths along with our winter veggies. It is a festive market, everyone was in good spirits, looking for gifts and just happy. I do love the market, we all do, having the opportunity to talk to our community members that we see each week, continuing stories that were started weeks ago, or watching our grandkids run like wild market rats like our kids did when they were young. Zoe age 3 seems to be in love with Steve the apple grower across the way from our booth. First thing as she piles out of the car she says to her Papa "can I go see Steve"? Then you see her, this short person in front of his stand not tall enough to see over the table of apples looking up talking to Steve, or later in the market the only way you can tell she is still there is by her little feet seen from under his table. The kids gave out cookies that they and their mama made to all our favorite vendors. Oh boy do they have their way around that market; they gave out cookies and then came back with a corndog, or apple juice or pears from these vendors.
Mid market a woman was shopping looking at jams, I was helping her make some decisions, when she looked at me and introduced herself. Of course I have forgotten her name is was like the wind in the willows her name came and then blew on by. But what she then said I do remember, "she said you know I have been shopping here for about 30 years, I went to UC Davis and ended up living here". She then went on to say "I have to tell you that I really appreciate that you and your family are here to provide us with your fresh produce. You represent the image of healthy eating and healthy food". Now I have to say I usually remember faces (not names) and I don't remember this woman at all, but she continued to thank us, and be so very grateful, it seems to have made a difference in her life. Later another woman came to shop and she introduced herself too. She asked me if indeed I had lived at Agrarian Effort a cooperative household on the UC Davis campus, which I had. She had also lived there about 10 years after Jeff and I did, and had done a story about the household how it got started. We both agreed that that experience of living at Agrarian Effort (which is still there as a cooperative housing) was the best and most educational aspect of our college education!!!
Where do I want to go with these stories is that we never know how we effect others in doing the work we do. It was a wonderful affirmation that I received at the market, and I think that is what makes the markets so important to exchange food, be able to know who is buying it, eating it and look them in the eye and tell them I hope you enjoy it. But mostly I wanted to share the highlights of this year, to remember the good rather than the difficult challenges that arose.
Highlights of 2021
First winegrape harvest-still waiting to see if there is any win
Poured a cement slab in the barn, so we no longer are working on a dirt floor!
Zach and Nicole almost building their house at the Back Ten
Maintained our 150 family CSA which has been a big step up for the farm
Maintained relationships with both coops-even though produce managers left and new ones came on
Third summer planting was successful
Arturo (Francisoc's son) and a crew of two others joined our farm crew a few times a week to help us from apricot harvest to end of the season field work
Hammond orchard apricot harvest was a success-the third time of caretaking this 40-100 year old apricot orchard along Putah Creek
We had added help of the younger generation in the shop making wreaths a few days a week and at the farmers market
Started a new hedgerow project at the Back Ten-hoping to connect a wildlife corridor between the two farms and habitat to help support the insect control and fertilization of the farm
The last story that is about the water saga. You received so many newsletters about making comments to the SGMA draft plan, and many of you did take the time to send in your thoughts and comments. Some of you joined in on a Zoom meeting that we organized for our Hungry Hollow neighborhood to help us all understand what is happening in our watershed. Some of you helped me decipher the 280 page management plan. Some of you gave advice as how we should proceed. So after the comment period ended, Kristin Sickel from the Yolo County Water District who is also director of the Yolo County Sustainable Groundwater Act wrote me and said "with your help, we’ve been inundated with comments from the community. Thanks for taking the time to participate in this process and improve the Yolo Subbasin GSP". That was all of you that took the time to participate in this process!!! There is more to the water story, as it will be the continued challenges for the future to come, and I am sure you will be a part of that as well.
We never know how we effect each other, but as I was thinking about this newsletter last night in my dreams, what I saw was a wreath, with all of the different colors, shapes and textures interwoven, creating a beautiful pattern, and that is how I see our lives, our interconnectedness, we are all part of that circular wreath going round the seasons of our lives. And I am so happy to be in there with you all. Happy Solstice, Happy Holidays all of them, and Merry New Year~ Annie
Sweet & Sour Cod with Tatsoi, Carrot & Ginger Fried Rice
4 Cod Fillets
2 Farm Eggs
1 cup Jasmine Rice
6 oz Tatsoi
⅓ cup Sweet Chili Sauce
In a small pot, combine the rice, a big pinch of salt and 2 cups of water. Heat to boiling on high. Once boiling, cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer 12 to 14 minutes, or until the water has been absorbed and the rice is tender. Remove from heat and fluff the cooked rice with a fork. Set aside in a warm place. While the rice cooks, wash and dry the fresh produce. Peel and mince the ginger. Thinly slice the scallions, separating the white bottoms and green tops. Cut off and discard the tatsoi roots; roughly chop. Peel the carrots; thinly slice into rounds. Crack the eggs into a bowl; beat until smooth. Quarter the lime. To make the sweet and sour sauce, in a bowl, combine the soy sauce, sweet chili sauce and the juice of all 4 lime wedges; whisk to combine.In a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 1 tablespoon of oil on medium-high until hot. Add the ginger, tatsoi, carrots and white bottoms of the scallions; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 3 to 5 minutes, or until softened and fragrant. add the eggs to the pan of vegetables; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until thoroughly combined and the eggs are just cooked through. Add the cooked rice and half the sweet and sour sauce. Cook, stirring frequently, 3 to 5 minutes, or until well combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a serving dish and set aside in a warm place. Wipe out the pan.Place the rice flour on a plate. Pat the cod dry with paper towels; season with salt and pepper on both sides. Coat 1 side of each seasoned fillet in the rice flour (tapping off any excess). In the pan used to finish the rice, heat 1 tablespoon of oil on medium-high until hot. Add the fillets, coated sides down. Cook 3 to 5 minutes on the first side, or until golden brown. Flip and add the remaining sweet and sour sauce. Cook, occasionally spooning the sauce over the fillets, 2 to 3 minutes, or until cooked through. Remove from heat.Transfer the glazed cod to a serving dish. Top with any sauce from the pan. Serve with the finished rice on the side. Garnish with the green tops of the scallions.
Chickpea & Tatsoi Coconut Curry
Source: dishing up the dirt
1 cup basmati rice (or rice of choice)
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 onion (medium sized, diced)
3 cloves garlic (minced)
2 teaspoons curry powder
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup stock (vegetables, or water)
15 ounces chickpeas (drained)
15 ounces full fat coconut milk
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
3 cups tatsoi (roughly chopped)
Cook the rice according to specific instructions on the package.
Heat the oil in a large dutch oven or soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally until fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, curry powder, red pepper flakes and a healthy pinch of salt and pepper. Cook for 1 minute longer, stirring often to coat the onion and garlic in the spices. Add in the vegetable stock, chickpeas and coconut milk. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the lime juice and tatsai and keep on low heat until the greens wilts down. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper. Serve the soup with a scoop of rice and enjoy.
Cheesy Vegan Roasted Broccoli with Smashed Root Vegetables
Source: The Full Helping
1 head 3 crowns broccoli (about 1 lb)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil such as avocado or grapeseed
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast plus extra for sprinkling
Coarse salt and crushed red pepper flakes
2 medium large rutabaga peeled and cubed
2 medium large turnips peeled and cubed
1/4 cup unsweetened soy or almond milk
Fine salt and freshly ground black pepper as needed
1/4 cup chopped parsley
Preheat your oven to 425F. Trim and peel the broccoli stems. Cut the broccoli crowns into small florets and the stems into small pieces. Toss the broccoli with the vegetable oil and nutritional yeast. Place it onto a lined baking sheet and sprinkle generously with coarse salt, along with crushed red pepper to taste. Roast for 25-30 minutes, or until the broccoli is tender and golden. While the broccoli roasts, bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Peel the rutabaga and turnips and cut them into large cubes. When the water is boiling, add the root vegetables. Boil for 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender. Drain them and add them back to the pot, along with the non-dairy milk and nutmeg. Use a potato masher to mash them roughly, leaving some texture. Add salt and pepper to taste and fold in the parsley. Add some HEMPESAN or vegan parmesan and/or any other mix-ins of choice. Divide the root vegetable mash onto plates and top with a generous handful of the cheesy roasted broccoli.
MANDARIN SALAD W/ CILANTRO VINAIGRETTE & AFRICAN SMOKE TILAPIA
Source: Culinary butterfly
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons sea salt
2 teaspoons South African Smoke blend
7 ounces Arugula or mixed greens
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons cilantro, minced
1 tablespoon sweet onion, chopped
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup light olive oil
Tilapia: Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
Line broiling pan or baking sheet with tin foil, spray with cooking spray and lay tilapia on the foil with room on the sides of each fish. Drizzle olive oil over fish, sprinkle with sea salt and South African Smoke to lightly coat the fish (add more if you like more seasoning). Bake for 15 minutes or until fish is white and flaky. Remove from oven and set aside. Cilantro Vinaigrette: In small blender, add vinegar, cilantro, onions, honey, mustard, salt and pepper. Process on high 20 seconds. Pour liquid into small bowl and slowly whisk in the olive oil until smooth. Assembly Place lettuce and oranges in a large bowl. Drizzle dressing over salad and toss gently. Separate salad onto serving plates and place a piece of tilapia on each salad before serving.