December 15, 2020
What’s in this Week’s VEGGIE BOX: Beets, Collards (or Kale), Pomegranate, lettuce, Sunchokes, Celery, Cilantro and Lemons
Bread this week: Walnut or Whole Wheat-your choice of one
Citrus Special Orders Options
Mandarins: 5# for $8 or 10# for $16
Please email us with your order to firstname.lastname@example.org by 5PM on Thursday December 17th and we will deliver to your location next week December 22nd
THERE WILL BE NO DELIVERY DECEMBER 26, 29, JANUARY 2, & 5
NOTE: Saturday Delivery of December 26 will be delivered on Tuesday December 22
DELIVERIES in 2021 BEGIN JANUARY 12
This Week on The Farm
This has been one of the most beautiful falls I can remember in California. The trees around the farm have been brilliant yellows and oranges that have hung on the trees it seems way beyond our typical ( if there is a typical any more) fall colors. I would go past the birch trees that surround the meadow where we usually have farm gatherings and just be stunned how the tree branches were cascading down full of fall colors. Granted we do not have the fall colors of reds, deep oranges of the east coast, but this year I think we sure made a show worth comparing.
Of course as with everything the leaves hanging in glorious colors for so long did mean that we were lacking rain and cold weather to knock them off their branches, yet in a time of looking for the positive side of life there it was, all in brilliant Technicolor! With the delayed rains not only did it mean that the colors stayed with us, but it also gave the farm crew the opportunity to finish the last of the season’s chores. Jeff was able to plant the Back Ten where we harvested this year’s early summer crops with a mixed cover crop of vetch, field pea, bells bean and winter rye grass. It has been a long time since we were able to come to the end of summer before the winter rains and get a cover crop planted. And that feels so good, to know that we were able to take care of the soil this round, to be able to feed back nutrients that were taken from the last few years of harvesting. The dry fall has also given us the window to do pre winter cultivating, knocking down the faster growing weeds that like to engulf out winter crops. The tulips are arriving too and they are going into the ground as soon as the boxes show up, about 1-2000 come every two weeks and it makes much an easier job if the ground is able to be worked.
It is always a double edged sword, do I wish for rain when there is so much still to do? Yet the landscape surrounding us is so brittle, parched I’m tired of watering, and I can see the garden plants bent over retreating back, calling in the reserve for survival, they are taking moisture from the little that is in the air, sending their roots deeper looking for moisture. With the rain that finally came, with that definite smell of moisture in the soil, the feel of a thickness in the air, those leaves came floating, silently, gracefully down with each raindrop. Our little dog Rue is the funniest character, she can’t stay still and you could find her in the middle of the road, her short cropped tail wagging as she waited to chase one of those shadows of falling leaves. I can imagine many like Rue watching those leaves falling and wanting to bark them back up into the tree. As the tree is relieved of their leaves, I definitely felt a relief with the rain. The hills, the plants, the soil are starting their winter cleanse. Everything is shifting to a new pace, to the quietness of the bare branches, the starkness of the winter landscape, and somehow a peace within us. Yet now the jobs have also changed and I find myself raking all those leaves up. I spent this weekend raking leaves, and I have to say, if I do not need to be elsewhere, or jobs waiting for me, or markets to go to, or deliveries to be made, raking leaves is meditative, a bit of a work out, but so satisfying. In my mind’s eye I could see others grumbling about the process of cleaning up the garden of all the leaf debris and I just hum, these are resources, this is gold physically and literally. I use the Burr oak leaves, because there are so many and so large, to make an Oak leaf compost with nothing else just for starting my baby seedlings in the spring. In other parts of the garden I don’t pick them up I rake them into, around and under plants in the garden and it feels like I am tucking them in for the winter with their blankie of leaf mulch, a mini compost pile around each garden bed!
It is a time for us to slow down, reflect on the year, which has been a wild crazy ride for all of us for sure. Here at the farm we have all worked really hard to adjust to what the year 2020 brought us, as farmers I think we are equipped for change and shooting from the hip type of life style, always waiting for the next problem around the corner. It looks like we did well in the end, crops came in, crops were lost, but overall we kept up the pace to bring food to our community. And now we can sit in the evenings and plot and plan for another year, catch up on sleep and reflect. Have a great wet, moist week; enjoy raking your leaves I know I will be meditating on the healing of earth as we go into this winter time. ~Annie
Beet and Celery Salad
2 cups celery root, peeled and sliced into thin matchsticks
2 cups beet, peeled and sliced into thin matchsticks
1/2 cup red onion, thinly sliced
1 cup packed fresh parsley leaves
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
1/2 cup shaved Parmesan cheese
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper combine ingredients in a medium bowl and toss to combine; season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately or transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate up to 3 days.
Cream of Jerusalem Artichoke and Celeriac Soup
1 1/2 lbs Jerusalem artichokes
1 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 cups (celeriac, peeled and cubed (about 1 small)
Celery leaves or cilantro shoots
Salt and pepper
Peel the Jerusalem artichokes and place them in cold water. Cut into thirds. Set aside. In a saucepan, soften the onion and garlic in the oil. Add the broth, Jerusalem artichokes, and celeriac. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for about 35 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. In a blender, purée until smooth. Add broth, if needed. Season with salt and pepper. Serve the soup and garnish with celery leaves or cilantro shoots.
Spicy Cilantro Pesto
2 cups packed cilantro
¼ cup hulled sunflower seeds, toasted, optional
1 jalapeño pepper, coarsely chopped
4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
Zest and juice of 1 lime
Salt to taste
½ package extra firm silken tofu (about 6 ounces), drained
¼ cup nutritional yeast, optional
Combine the cilantro, sunflower seeds (if using), jalapeño pepper, garlic, lime zest and juice, salt, tofu, and nutritional yeast (if using) in the bowl of a food processor and puree until smooth and creamy.
Red Lentil Dal with Sunchokes & Basmati Rice
¾ cup Basmati Rice
3 cloves Garlic
1 bunch Collard Greens
1 Yellow Onion
1 bunch Cilantro
2 tsps Dal Spice Blend (Curry Powder, Black Cumin Seeds, Ground Mustard Seeds, Ground Coriander, Ground Turmeric) Wash and dry the fresh produce. Peel and medium dice the carrot. Peel the garlic and onion. Mince the garlic; small dice the onion. Separate the collard green stems from the leaves; discard the stems and roughly chop the leaves. Pick the cilantro leaves off the stems; discard the stems. Peel and slice the sunchokes into ¼-inch-thick rounds. In a small pot, combine the rice, 2 cups of water and a pinch of salt. Heat to boiling on high. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low; simmer 16 to 18 minutes, or until the rice is tender. Fluff the finished rice with a fork. Set aside. While the rice cooks, in a large pot, melt the ghee on medium heat. Once melted, add the carrot, onion and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until softened. Add the spice blend; cook, stirring frequently, 2 to 3 minutes, or until fragrant. Add the lentils, sunchokes and 1¾ cups of water to the pot of vegetables; cook, stirring occasionally, 13 to 15 minutes, or until the lentils have softened and the mixture has thickened slightly. Add the collard greens and ¼ cup of water to the pot of vegetables and lentils; cook, stirring frequently, 2 to 3 minutes, or until the collard greens are tender. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Divide the rice and finished dal between 2 dishes. Garnish with the cilantro. Enjoy!
Lemon and pomegranate couscous
1 large or 2 small pomegranate
250ml boiling chicken stock or water
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 lemons, juice only
6 tbsp olive oil
4 tbsp chopped, fresh mint or coriander
Cut the pomegranates in half and scoop out the seeds using a teaspoon and remove the white membrane around the seeds. Place the couscous in a bowl. Pour the boiling stock or water onto the couscous and mix in the olive oil and lemon juice. Season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cover tightly with cling film and allow the couscous to sit in a warm place for 5-10 minutes, or until the liquid has been absorbed. Remove the Clingfilm and fluff the grains with a fork. Allow the couscous to cool completely. Stir the chopped herbs and pomegranate seeds into the couscous. Add more olive oil, salt, pepper and herbs to taste.