July 7, 2020

 

What’s in this Week’s VEGGIE BOX: String Beans, Plums, Cucumbers, Parsley, Green Onion, Potatoes, Summer Squash

Bread this week: Whole Wheat or Rosemary Focaccia

 

 

Fruit Special Orders Options

Peaches: 1 layer box for $30

~ Peaches  

            Please email us with your order to humus@cal.net and we will deliver to your location next week July 14th.

 

This Week on The Farm

Soon this will all be history. I sit here in my little studio, which was the home where I grew up, looking at some paintings that my grandmother did and acknowledge that soon, this too will all be history.

I suppose it’s on my mind, my sister and I went to Monterey this past weekend to visit my friend Nick, who just had his 99th birthday. I met him while I was in school down that way back in 2013, I did a project on the history of Salinas, and the Cominos family was a large part of that history. He and his stories made a huge impact on me, I have stayed connected with him through the years, but with everything going on this year, I wasn’t able to see him. When I called, he wasn’t doing well, and so I decided that I wanted to see him before he passed on.  So I asked my sister to go with me and we made a weekend of it. I visited with him for a few hours and he talked about his life. 99 years is a long time, that’s a lot to live through, a lot to see and a lot to look back on. He lived through the depression, the war, the Civil Rights Movement; he knew Steinbeck and met Marilyn Monroe. He had a great love of his life and made many mistakes. He talked about how if he had just remembered to buy stocks the morning after a friend told him to; he would have been a millionaire.  Or if he had taken a job offer in LA he would have been a business chain owner. There were so many things that he could have done differently, but he didn’t. He told me that in life, there is a high and a low. The low is, you can  focus on all the things you missed out on, all the things you could have had but something went wrong, or if you had only done a tiny thing different, but didn’t. The high is, you know who you are today, and all the choices you made have made you into that person. If he had bought those stocks and become a millionaire, he may have never met his wife, if he had taken any numerous opportunities he was given to change his path in life, who knows who he would have been today. I know that I would have probably never met him 7 years ago.  He looks back on his 99 years, and even though he could have had what so many people in this country, in this world dream of; power, money, success, he doesn’t regret a single thing. “Who knows who I would be without the making the decisions I made”.

It may not be profound, but it’s something so many including myself don’t think about too much. I can focus too much on what I have lost, what I could have had, what I don’t have, hoping that maybe the next thing will be better. I can focus so much on what was, or what could be, that I don’t stop and realize what’s happening right now. I don’t realize that this moment is shaping me, and I can’t let it make me into someone I don’t want to be. I look at this year and it makes me sad, angry and a little hopeless, and a lot alone. So many things are happening at once, people’s lives are being thrown off track; people are struggling for their lives, homes, families, businesses, personal rights and their futures. It is enough to engulf me, make me fear for what may come next, for what the “new normal” may be. It is hard to imagine that things will get better, that dreams will be set back on track, that rights will be restored, and that togetherness will no longer be just a memory.  But listening to Nick, and looking at the history that surrounds me, I feel a spark of hope. That right now, history is being made, not only in the country, in the world, but in me. These are the moments that I will look back on and know that they helped to shape me, that they made me who I am, and I need to make sure that I can be proud of that. I need to know that the decisions I make today, I won’t regret tomorrow. It may not be happening how I wanted it to, how I thought it would, but it is happening, and maybe, as a country, as a community, as a people we can make it through this, through this hardship, through this darkness.  It reminds me of a song by Bill Staines, which we grew up listening to (a little more history for you)

 

We are crossing the water, our whole life through

We are making a passage that is straight and true

Every heart is a vessel

Every Dream a light

Shinning through the darkness of the blackest night

This is one of those black nights, and we need to keep shinning, keep dreaming, keep fighting for the people that we want to be and I’ll see you when this is all history. Have a great week~ Claire

 

Braised Green Beans & Summer Vegetables

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 small onion, halved and sliced

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh oregano, or 1 teaspoon dried

1/2 cup white wine or reduced-sodium chicken broth

1 pound green beans, trimmed

1 medium summer squash, or zucchini, halved and cut into 1-inch pieces

1 cup halved cherry tomatoes, or grape tomatoes

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper

¼ cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and oregano and cook, stirring, until softened and beginning to brown, about 2 minutes. Add wine (or broth) and bring to a boil. Add green beans, reduce heat to a simmer, cover and cook for 10 minutes, stirring once or twice. Add summer squash (or zucchini) and tomatoes and continue cooking until the vegetables are tender, 8 to 10 minutes more. Season with salt and pepper. Serve sprinkled with Parmesan.

 

Roasted Tater Rounds with Green Onions & Tarragon

4 pounds potatoes (about 8 medium), sliced 1/4 inch thick

Cooking spray

2 teaspoons sea salt

1 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper

6 green onions, thinly sliced (about 3/4 cup)

3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

2 tablespoons minced fresh tarragon

Olive oil, optional

reheat broiler. Place potatoes in a large microwave-safe bowl; spritz with cooking spray and toss to coat. Microwave, covered, on high 10-12 minutes or until almost tender, stirring halfway through cooking.

Spread potatoes into greased 15x10x1-in. baking pans. Spritz with additional cooking spray; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Broil 4-6 in. from heat 10-12 minutes or until golden brown, stirring halfway through cooking. In a small bowl, mix green onions, parsley and tarragon. Sprinkle over potatoes; toss to coat. If desired, drizzle with olive oil.

 

Chicken Cucumber Pitas

2 cups cubed cooked chicken breast

1 large cucumber, quartered, seeded and sliced

1 can (2-1/4 ounces) sliced ripe olives, drained

1 medium tomato, seeded and chopped

1 small sweet red pepper, chopped

1/2 cup cubed cheddar cheese

1/4 cup chopped red onion

DRESSING:

1/2 cup ranch salad dressing

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1 tablespoon Italian salad dressing

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon pepper

12 pita pocket halves

In a large bowl, combine the first seven ingredients. In a small bowl, combine the ranch dressing, mayonnaise, Italian dressing, garlic powder and pepper; pour over chicken mixture and toss to coat. Fill each pita half with a scant 1/2 cup chicken mixture.

 

Mama’s Warm German Potato Salad

3 pounds potatoes

1/3 cup canola oil

2 tablespoons champagne vinegar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper

1/2 cucumber, very thinly sliced

2 celery ribs, thinly sliced

1 small onion, chopped

6 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled

1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley

Place potatoes in a large saucepan; add water to cover. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cook, uncovered, until tender, 18-21 minutes. Drain; cool slightly. Peel and thinly slice. Whisk oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Add potatoes; toss to coat. Add remaining ingredients; toss to combine. Serve warm.

 

Cucumber-Zucchini Salad

2 cucumbers, thinly sliced

2 zucchini, thinly sliced

1 small sweet onion, thinly sliced (optional)

1⁄3 cup vinegar

1⁄4 cup sugar

1⁄2 tablespoon salt

1 teaspoon coarse black pepper, fresh cracked

1 pinch red pepper flakes

Arrange in alternate layers cucumber, zucchini & onions. Mix vinegar and sugar dissolved in 1/2 cup hot water add salt, pepper and crushed red pepper. Add a couple ice cubes to chill. Drain any water formed from cucumbers before adding the dressing. Allow vegetables to marinate in the dressing at least 1 hour before serving.

 

Turkey Gyros

1 medium cucumber, peeled

2/3 cup reduced-fat sour cream

1/4 cup finely chopped onion

2 teaspoons dill weed

2 teaspoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon olive oil

1/2 pound turkey breast tenderloin cut in ¼ thick strips

1-1/2 teaspoons salt-free Greek seasoning

1-1/2 cups shredded lettuce

8 thin tomato slices

4 whole pita breads, warmed

2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese

Finely chop a third of the cucumber. For sauce, mix sour cream, onion, dill, lemon juice and chopped cucumber. Thinly slice remaining cucumber. In a nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat; sauté turkey until no longer pink, 4-6 minutes. Stir in Greek seasoning. Serve turkey, lettuce, tomato and sliced cucumber on pitas; top with sauce and cheese.

To make your own salt-free Greek seasoning: Mix 1-1/2 tsp. dried oregano; 1 tsp. each dried mint and dried thyme; 1/2 tsp. each dried basil, dried marjoram and dried minced onion; and 1/4 tsp. dried minced garlic. Store in an airtight container in a cool dry place for up to 6 months. Yield: about 2 Tbsp.