November 29, 2022
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO JEFF MAIN AGE 72, ORGANIC FARMER FOR 46YEARS!!!
What’s in this Week’s VEGGIE BOX: mandarins, Lettuce, Spinach, Cilantro, Turnips, Beets and Butternut Squash
Bread this week: French Baguette OR Puligese, your choice of one
Winter Quarter: NEW QUARTER CHECK LIST
If your name is not on the list PLEASE DO NOT PICK UP A BOX- we did not pack one for you.
Check your name off of each separate list when you pick up your produce, so the drop host knows who forgot their box and can give you a call.
If you see CONT next to your name on the roster, it means we have not received payment from you
If next to your name it says E-MAILED or CALLED, it means we gave you a call or email and have not heard from you, we would like to know your intentions for this quarter - we did make you a box for this week only
Are you getting the newsletter via e-mail if not send us your address (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Holiday Special Orders are Due Next week
This week on the farm
This last Sunday I lazily lingered in bed a tad longer than the usually jump up to start the day time. I laid there in my cozy comfy warm bed with comforters and quilts atop me, and my tuxedo colored cat Button on top of the Annie mountain. I thought now this is most satisfying for this time of year, this is what fall/winter time is all about. To sleep in, to be piled high with covers, in the company of my kitty… that too feeds the tired body of a 70 year old woman who has been working hard for most of her life. I looked out to the orange and yellow colors of the leaves outside our windows, across the farm, and throughout our county it is absolutely stunning. Probably not at all in comparison to the east coast colors, but here on the Pacific side of the country, it is really beautiful, and it feeds the soul. The leaves are starting to float down like large brilliant colored snowflakes, blanketing the ground with leaf mulch that is also full of fall colors. Everything that surrounds us is shouting out the end of a season, and the start of another season. The leaves are on hold, continuing to color, and with their little petioles hanging on for as long as possible before the storm arrives. Be it a wind storm and no rain, or as we are all holding our breath, hoping it is a rain storm, those colors are hanging in anticipation of what is to come next…the quiet deep sleep of winter.
As the leaves are in a holding pattern for a few more minutes, the life beneath those trees has been busy preparing for the drop. It feels like for the first time, all of the plastic drip lines in the tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, basil, and flowers have been lifted and removed from the fields. Ali has mowed the summer plantings, and most of the fields have been disked and turned over, putting all of that organic matter back into the soil. All of these fields that have been producing all summer long, for our bountiful harvest now have white mustard, triticale (a wheat) and vetch cover crops have been broadcasted and planted. This will create a green cover for the soil in winter, creating a rich nutritive cover that will feed the soil in the springtime when it is mowed and turned back into the soil. That is so satisfying to know that we have done what we can to give back to the soil that of which we have taken.
This is also the time, while everything around us is preparing for the winter we too are planting and preparing for the winter crops, and have been planting flowers for spring cutting, tulips are going in 1000-3000 a week for the next four weeks. Everything that we want to have for harvest in winter and early spring needs to be in the ground before winter sets in. You see the greens, lettuces, roots in your box, but to keep that coming Ali and Jeff have been planting as fast as they can so your boxes will be full all winter long, and so we have produce to sell at the market during the still, quiet slow growing time of winter.
This is also the time to plant any native trees and shrubs, so that their roots can find a cozy comfy soil to call home and be ready to start growing once the spring warmth arrives in early February. A week ago we planted our second hedgerow out on the Back Ten, it seems to be something that Jeff and I do, planting native trees once again in this landscape. We have taken 2 acres out of the 10 acres and are bringing back the wild side of the landscape for a wind break, for biodiversity, for deep rooted plants to be the straws that take down the annual rainfall, for the spongy mulch to be homes for ground dwelling insects, to entice the native life back into our landscapes. We have a grant from NRCS (Natural Resource Conservation Services) who partners with RCD (Resource Conservation Distinct) who partners with SLEWS (Student Landowner Education & Watershed Stewardship) all of who work together to plant hedgerows. This partnership also to gives high school students an experience on a farm in their community by being the labor to plant the native hedgerows. It is always a fun high energy kind of day, which is exciting for everyone involved. This time I asked our good longtime friend Nick Anderson who is the owner of Bright Coast Productions to video the day, and interview the partners so that we can share the experience to anyone interested. I just watched the first draft of the video, and I can’t wait to share it with you!!! Nick did a good job capturing the planting, all of the partners and how everyone can be a part of bringing back our native landscape, in our backyards, or on the larger agricultural landscapes.
Enjoy this time of year, as you eat the colors of the fall in your butternut squash soups, or feed your body with the dark nutrient filled greens of the huge spinach bunches. I am going to walk the farm for the last moments of fall before those leaves just give up the hold and let go to the darkness of winter that gives them (and us) the time to fill their reserve for the explosion to come in the spring. Bring on the rain storm and have a great week~ Annie Main
Chicken with Squash, Turnips and Shiitakes
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 1/4 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
1 Tbs. minced fresh sage
1 lb. butternut squash, peeled, seeded, cut in 1/2-inch pieces
2 bunches small turnips, unpeeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, greens reserved
1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth, plus 1 Tbs.
1/2 lb. shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and cut into
1 1/2 tsp. all-purpose flour
In a large, heavy fry pan over medium-high heat, warm 1 Tbs. of the olive oil. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Add the chicken to the pan and cook, turning once, until browned, about 1 1/2 minutes per side. Using tongs, transfer the chicken to a plate. Reduce the heat to medium, add the onion and sage and cook, stirring frequently, until tender, about 5 minutes. Add the squash and turnips and stir to coat with the olive oil. Add the 1 1/2 cups (12 fl. oz./375 ml) broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 25 minutes. Meanwhile, in a large fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the remaining 1 Tbs. olive oil. Add the mushrooms, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until tender, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat. Chop half of the turnip greens, reserving the remainder for another use. Add the mushrooms and chopped turnip greens to the pan with the chicken. Cover and simmer until the greens wilt, about 5 minutes. Put the flour in a small bowl and gradually whisk in the 1 Tbs. broth until smooth. Add to the pan, stirring, then cover and simmer until the sauce thickens, about 2 minutes. Adjust the seasoning and serve immediately. Serves 4.
Beet Butternut Squash Salad with Apple Maple Vinaigrette
1 ½ lbs butternut squash, cubed (about 4 cups)
3 medium beets, peeled and diced
4 cups barley, cooked
2 cups arugula
½ cup crumbled goat cheese
¼ tsp thyme
Salt and pepper, to taste
Apple Maple Vinaigrette
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp minced garlic
3 tbsp olive oil
Pinch of salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Wash and cut squash and beets and season with thyme, salt and pepper. Line baking sheet with parchment paper and bake for 35-40 minutes While the butternut squash and beets are baking, cook your barley according to package directions. While the barley is cooking, mix the ingredients for your dressing in a covered mason jar and shake to combine. Mix the arugula and barley for your salad base, and top with baked butternut squash and beets. Add goat cheese crumbles, dressing and mix well. Enjoy!
CUMIN BEEF STIR-FRY WITH ROASTED BUTTERNUT SQUASH
1 lb. butternut squash, dice to ½ -inch cube shape
¼ tsp Coarse salt
⅛ tsp Ground black pepper
2 tbsp Olive oil
Cumin Beef Seasonings:
1 lb. skirt steak, beef flap/sirloin tips, or sirloin steak, thinly sliced against the grain
3 tsp cumin powder
1.5 tsp arrowroot powder
½ tsp baking soda
1.5 tbsp coconut aminos
¾ tsp chili powder, optional
¾ tsp coarse salt
1 tbsp olive oil
4 bulbs scallions, sliced in diagonal (1 bulb for garnish)
5 cloves garlic, sliced
1 large shallot, sliced to thin strips
3 tsp Sichuan peppercorns, whole, not grind. See notes
2-3 whole Chinese whole dry red chili peppers, optional.
½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
Preheat oven to 400F. Dice butternut squash to cube shape. Season and toss with salt, pepper, and olive oil. Roast them over a large sheet pan lined with parchment for 25 to 30 minutes until the squash is tender, turning once with a metal spatula. In the meantime, thinly slice the beef against the grain to ⅛-inch thin. Marinate the beef with ingredients from cumin to olive oil. Mix well and set aside in the fridge while preparing other ingredients. Prepare and gather the aromatics from scallions to chili peppers in one large bowl ready to use. Chop cilantro. When the butternut squash is about 5 minutes away from done in the oven. Preheat a large skillet over medium heat, when hot, add 1.5 tbsp oil.
Spread the beef over the skillet in a single layer and pan sear over medium-high heat for about 3 minutes the first side without disturbing until the beef is crisp and brown. Cook the flip side about 1 minute. Pour the beef and the pan juices aside in one large bowl. Start the skillet dry and while it’s still hot, add 1.5 tbsp oil. Saute aromatics in the bowl with 2 pinches of salt until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add butternut squash and beef back to the skillet. Toss and taste to see if more salt is needed. Off heat, add cilantro and scallions. Toss everything together quickly while the skillet is still hot. Transfer to a large serving plate. Serve hot and immediately.
Turnip And Spinach Curry
Turnips: 2 medium size, cut into small squares
Onion: 1 medium, finely chopped
Tomatoes: 2 medium, finely chopped
Spinach: 2 cups, coarsely chopped
Ginger garlic paste: 1 tbsp
Garam Masala: 1 tsp
Coriander Powder: 1 tsp
Turmeric: 1/2 tsp
Chilli powder: 1 tbsp
Curry leaves: few
Cilantro: 2 tbsp, finely chopped
Salt: as required
Heat oil in a pan on medium heat. Once oil is hot, add onions, curry leaves and cook until onions are soft. Add tomatoes to the mixture and cook until it gets soft. Add ginger garlic paste, mix well, then add salt, garam masala, coriander powder and chilli powder, sauté further for 2 minutes till raw smell is gone from ginger garlic paste. Now add turnips, mix well and cook covered for 5 minutes, watch for water, if too dry add some water. Once turnips is ¾ cooked add spinach to it, mix well. Garnish with cilantro and enjoy