May 11, 2021

 

What’s in this Week’s VEGGIE BOX: Ruby Red Grapefruit, Spring onions, Collards, Carrots, Snap Peas, Raisins and Beets

 

Bread this week: Rosemary Foccacia or Whole Wheat- your choice of one

 

!!!! NEW QUARTER !!!!

 

Summer Quarter Payment is Due May 14th

 

~The new quarter starts May 25th and ends August 10th

~Please let us know if you DO OR DO NOT plan on continuing.

~Please do not leave payments at drop sites

 

We regret to say that due to lack of interest, there will no longer be home deliveries in the Davis area. This may be revisited in the future if we have more interest, but for now that service will no longer be offered. Sorry for any inconvenience.

 

 

NEW DELIVERY OPTION FOR 47TH STREET DROP

 

A message from John Boyer who delivers to the downtown Sacramento area.

 

Greetings East Sacramento! Delivery to your door is available from the newly created Trips for Kids chapter of Sacramento. For $5 a week we will bring your veggie box to your door with optional kitchen waste pick up for community and school garden composting. It’s a win win for you and our veggie loving community! Contact John Boyer @ (916) 342-0813 for how to sign up. All proceeds go to Trips for Kids. To learn more about Trips for Kids visit https://www.tfksac.org/

 

 

This Week on the Farm

Oomph!  That was about a three day gut punch.  That was a fierce north wind.  But like a punch-drunk fighter saved by the bell, we are up and at ‘em again.  The wind has died down; everything that was firmly rooted in the ground is still around, including the family of the farm that are firmly rooted in place.  I have noted for many years that the most valuable tool the farmer has is the ability to take a hit, a hard one, a knockdown, and get up again.  It is perseverance that outweighs genius, talent, financial resources, community, everything except love for the land and the life.  This was no knockdown, and we have some old farmers here on our little farm that have lived with the Central Valley winds, born to them actually, long enough to have learned to bend to them.

Ali says she is reminded of a poem by Tennyson, “The Charge of the Light Brigade” that characterizes what she feels like we are doing here on the farm as we assess the damage of the spring winds, face the unknown of the unstable weather approaching and anticipate the return of the heat of the summer.  “Onward, into the Valley of Death rode the six hundred…..cannons to the left, cannons to the right….Theirs not to reason why, theirs but to do or die….. She and I sat for an hour last evening out the back door and, surrounded by the beauty of Annie’s garden, laughed long at her vision of our path through the wind and into the summer.  I must stop here and say I made a mistake.  When I was thinking about the most valuable tools, I left out an essential tool.  My Dad first noted it for me as he watched Annie and I struggle to establish a farm on this piece of then barren ground.  He said,”You Honyack, (Some sort of a term of endearment for his three sons) you can laugh at anything!”  It was probably at the end of a three day bout of north wind.  But laughter has served me well all my life and it was so rejuvenating to sit and laugh at what Ali saw for our future, and know that she can laugh at the picture of the small group of workers of the land, perhaps 10 rather than 600, together walking into the valley of uncertain future.

After that flight of imaginary disaster, I can say that the farm weathered the blasts well.  We actually planted our eggplant transplants the day before the wind started to blow, and today, they look as if they will survive into the future.  And just for icing on the cake, Ali pushed and pushed us to make the adjustments and modifications necessary to use the state of the art transplanter that I bought about 10 years ago, and to start to save everyone’s back for other work.  To my surprise, after several small setbacks, it worked like a charm, and the smile on Rogelio’s face as we finished our first row, was worth it all.  I always thought that keeping my back in shape by bending over all day was an important aspect of my farm life, but perhaps my thoughts, my back, and my biases are antiquated. 

But maybe not.  We just took up the offer of the owner of the infamous “Speckled Apricots” to lease the orchard again.  For those of you that don’t know about them, we have leased, now for the third time in our career, a 2 or 3 acre plot of ancient apricot trees growing on the banks of Putah Creek just west of Pleasants Valley Rd.  It was a hard sell to the family because we are already overbooked in our farming adventure and we all know it.  But I kind of wouldn’t take no for an answer, put my dwindling reputation at stake, and trusted that the third time is the charm.  I just can’t resist old trees, an historic ranch site, and a nice crop of apricots.  The trees are a mix of the best that Winters had to offer between 1870 and 1960, the heyday of true apricot production in California.  They are a mix of Blenheims, known as Royals in the winters area, and Derby Royals, which are the original early offshoot of the famous Blenheim ‘cot.  The Sackett Ranch was one of those pioneering on the Winters area over 130 years ago, and was situated in the mouth of the Putah Creek canyon, where the early heat from the Monticello Valley now situated under Lake Berryessa made it one of the earliest ripening areas in the state.  With the help of the current owner of this small portion of the original orchards who will not let them go and a young go-getter who is providing the labor to care for the orchard, we should be able to offer these memories of early California in your box next week and for the next month.  The only trouble:  this year with the lack of fall and spring rains……they are not speckled. Have a great week ~ Jeff

 

Coconut-Rosemary-Glazed Grilled Beets with Goat Cheese

2 pounds beets

3 ½ Tablespoons coconut oil, melted

1/3 pound firm goat cheese

Salt

Pepper

Toasted shaved coconut, optional

Peel beets and cut into ¼ inch slices. Whisk together oil and rosemary, a pinch of salt, and pepper.  Add the beet slices and toss to coat. Heat the grill to medium high.  Place the beets on the grill, cover and cook, turning and brushing with the coconut oil glaze twice, for about 20-25 minutes, or until just fork tender. Slice the goat cheese into ½ inch thick slices.  Keep chilled. Heat one section of the grill to high heat.  Brush the cheese slices on one side with the remaining coconut oil and place them in a flat grill pan.  Cook just to warm through. Immediately transfer the cheese to a serving plate and arrange the beet slices around the cheese.   Sprinkle with the toasted shaved coconut and serve.

 

The Crisper Whisperer: Grapefruit-Vanilla Curd

2/3 cup sugar

2 tablespoons grapefruit zest (grated on a rasp)

Seeds scraped from 1/4 vanilla bean

3 large eggs

4 large egg yolks

1/2 cup freshly squeezed grapefruit juice, from about half a large grapefruit

1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, from about 1 large lemon (use Meyer lemon if you can)

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small cubes

Pour one inch of water into a medium pot that accommodates your heat-proof glass bowl without letting it touch the water's surface. Bring water to a simmer over medium heat. In a food processor or mortar and pestle, combine the sugar, grapefruit zest, and vanilla seeds, and pulse or mash until well combined and very fragrant. Combine the grapefruit sugar, eggs and egg yolks in the heatproof bowl. Whisk together for one minute to distribute the sugar. Place the bowl over the pot with simmering water and whisk constantly for about 30 seconds, or until the sugar is dissolved. Add the grapefruit juice and lemon juice and cook, whisking frequently, until the curd reads 170° F and has the consistency of sour cream, about 10 minutes. Remove the bowl from the heat. Whisk in the pieces of cold butter one by one until they are completely incorporated. Strain the curd through a fine-mesh sieve into a clean bowl. Serve as a condiment with scones or toast for breakfast, or spooned into tart shells for dessert. Will keep, tightly covered, in the fridge for up to two weeks, or frozen for several months.

 

 

Barley Salad with Green Garlic And Sugar Snap Peas

Here’s a spring salad that’s equally satisfying for a workday lunch or a weekend picnic. Light yet filling, it combines chewy, nutritious barley with two seasonal treats – young green garlic and crisp sugar snap peas. Recipe from thekitchn.com

1 cup hulled barley

3 cups water

2 stalks green garlic (white and light green parts only), cut into 1-inch pieces*

2 tablespoons toasted almonds

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon lemon zest

Coarse kosher salt

8 ounces sugar snap peas

2 tablespoons torn mint leaves

Cook and cool barley: Combine barley and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer until tender, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Cool completely. Make green garlic sauce: Blend green garlic, almonds, olive oil, lemon juice and zest, and 1 teaspoon salt in a food processor or blender until smooth. If the mixture is very thick or dry, mix in 1-2 tablespoons of water. Blanch sugar snap peas: Have ready a large bowl of ice water, a slotted spoon, and a plate lined with a cloth or paper towel. Bring a pan of water to boil over high heat. Add a tablespoon of salt and the snap peas and boil just until bright green and crisp, about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Quickly remove the snap peas with a slotted spoon and plunge them into the ice bath. When the peas are completely cool, remove them from the ice bath and drain on the towel-lined plate. Cut the snap peas lengthwise on the diagonal. Assemble salad: In a large bowl, combine barley and green garlic sauce. Then mix in snap peas and mint. Season to taste and serve immediately or keep covered in the refrigerator

 

Collard Wraps with Almond Sauce

2 green onions Chopped

1 tablespoon olive oil

½ teaspoon sea salt

1 cucumber cut into match sticks

1 large carrot cut into match sticks

1 cup Bean Spouts

1 handful Italian Parsley

1 handful torn basil

Collard Leaves cut in two and stems discarded.

1/4 cup honey

1/4 cup lemon juice

2 tablespoon chopped fresh ginger

dash Cayenne Pepper to taste or red chili flakes

1 ½ tablespoon Nama Shoyu or Braggs Liquid Aminos

¾ cup roasted chunky almond butter

In small bowl mix together the Vegetables, olive oil and sea salt. Set aside. In a separate bowl combine all ingredients for the Almond Sauce and mix well till smooth. Set aside. Clean and dry collard wraps and remove bottom and middle stems with knife. Cut into two pieces. Place one half of collard wrap on cutting board. Place a small amount of Almond Sauce on top of the collard green then next layer the vegetables. Roll like a wrap. Continue with remaining wraps and pieces. Serve immediately with remaining almond sauce for dipping.