May 14, 2019

 

What’s in this Week’s VEGGIE BOX: Carrots, Peppermint, Asparagus, Snap Peas, Mulberries, Red Romaine Lettuce and Green Garlic

What’s in your FLOWER BOUQUET: Snapdragons, Dianthus, Nigella, Ornithogalum (Star of Bethlehem), Flax, Statice, Larkspur, Godeitas, 

 

 

SUMMER QUARTER Payment is due May 22

The summer quarter begins May 28 and ends August 13. Please fill out the Quarterly form and return it with you payment.  Mail your payment or email us with your intensions EVEN if you DO NOT PLAN TO CONTINUE. 

 

This Week on the Farm

My fondest memories growing up were our family holidays when my mom’s sisters and brothers would come together at the ranch in Santa Rosa. There were five sister and brothers with a dozen kids gathering around our matriarchal grandmother plus extra in-laws, and other friends. It was always an event; my grandmother had a huge flower garden, expansive lawns, toy tractors and wagons for the kids to drive around the sidewalk that circled the entire house-a great way to drive our parent crazy, there even was a playhouse for us too. My grandmother was an entertainer with tables, umbrellas, flowers decorating the tables, she was the silent doer, and her children grew up doing everything with her. When it came time to serve the dinner, which what these events were really all about, an excuse to create a feast for the families, all of my mom’s sisters and brothers were in the kitchen with my grandma carving the turkey, mashing the potatoes, making the salads, they all seemed to know their jobs-they must have had the same jobs all their lives in the kitchen. But they were a team, and of course there was a lot of joking, talking and hubbub that went with those moments. I wish so much I could be there again, watching them work together, but those days are now passed, and Jeff and I are now the grandmother and grandfather carrying on our own traditions for our children and grandchildren. 

Mothers Day week is one of the biggest flower weeks of the year for us, and it turns out not the usual Champagne brunch and leisurely quiet afternoon with family gathered around like most. To make sure all the flowers for stores were picked and bunched in a timely fashion I made a spread sheet for the week and what we had to do by what day. And then another spread sheet for what needed to be done to get the garden cleaned, weeded and ready for our 6thannual Hats and High Tea event on Saturday and then the Capay Garden Tour on Sunday. This year our chef was not able to help us out, so Ali, Claire and I took on the tea by putting it together ourselves. We did have help from another baker to make the sweets for the tea, but Ali and I were in the kitchen making the savories together. In the past three years or so Claire has taken marketing under her wing for the Good Humus events and has really helped reach our goals for attendees. For the third year in a row Claire gets 5 gold stars as we had 45 folks for our tea party! Which of course made Ali and I nervous about getting beautiful tasty food for that many, but we took up the challenge and I believe pulled off the most beautiful, relaxed event ever!

 The second event of the weekend was the Capay Valley Garden Tour which started at 10am on Sunday. With all the tables in place from the tea party the day before, with the garden weed free, a market stand already set up it is hard to not join in on the Sunday event. Claire was again this year’s event coordinator for the garden tour, and she told us we had better be ready because there as a record number of tickets sold this year and we had better get ourselves ready for the masses. We served ice tea, answered questions about the garden plants, Ali gave a workshop on floral head crowns, Jeff tried to hide out, but got pulled out to wash glasses and to talk to folks and Claire was behind the market stand selling jams, plants and t-shirts. It was nonstop.  Our kids were working as a team, chatting with folks about the farm, the plants, cutting willow for the head crowns, or selling plants from the nursery or dried fruit at the stand-all those years selling at the farmers markets has giving our kids the ability to talk to strangers without a bat of the eye, and growing up on the farm-they have learned that they will have to problem solve daily and there is not time for pause for a mental check out. 

Many times in the two days of visitors, I would tell folks that many of the plants in the garden came from my mother, and grandmother’s garden in Santa Rosa and my knowledge of the plants came from my mom’s love of the garden, and my grandmothers before her. It made me feel good to share the stories with our visitors where the plants came from, in the past Mother’s Day mom would be sitting out watching folks pass, talk to the old timers, but now she is part of the stories and our memories. She was so present in the days leading up to this weekend, she would be watching me clean the house, she always wanted the windows washed, and I could hear her tell me to make sure to clean the oven (which I did for the first time ever, because she wasn’t here to do it). Someone asked if I miss my mom, and I said no (and I felt really callous with that answer), but then I realized having lived with her for the last eight years, she is very present still, she is everywhere in the house, in everything I do, is at every meal we eat (she wouldn’t approve of the under cooked asparagus) or how we must cut the meat against the grain not with the grain….She is with us all the time, so how can I miss her? 

We had a family BBQ after all the hubbub, we were all exhausted from the mother’s day flower week and the mother’s day weekend, but I could not be more proud of how for each of our children are able to each take on a roll in making all the weekend events so successful. I told them we must be crazy to be putting on these events, and they said yeah we are crazy, but you know that ability to put together a beautiful event comes direct from my grandmother’s skills, my mother’s incredible ability to organize and the love of the beauty we 

have created. It brought back those early childhood memories that I started this piece with; where the family is together making a moment more special by doing it together. As exhausting as the weekend was it was the best Mothers Day for me, what we can do together, and know that we all do it for the love of this place we call home, and they are proud of what Jeff and I have created. The tradition of the family working together as a team as I did as a kid makes me so happy. Have a great week. ~Annie

 

 

Asparagus Pie

1/2 cup flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon white sugar

1 pinch fresh ground black pepper

1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

1 1/4 cups milk

3 large eggs

1 tablespoon lemon zest

1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F 

Butter the inside edges of a 2-quart casserole dish.

Stir flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, sugar, black pepper, fresh thyme, and milk together in a large bowl until smooth.

Whisk eggs and lemon zest into milk mixture to form a smooth batter. Melt butter in a heavy skillet over medium heat. Cook and stir asparagus and 1/4 teaspoon salt in melted butter until the asparagus turns dark green and is coated with butter, 1 to 2 minutes. Layer asparagus in the bottom of the prepared casserole dish. Pour batter evenly over the top. Bake in the preheated oven until the pie has puffed up and is browned around the edges, 40 to 45 minutes.Recipe By:Chef John

 

Spaghetti with Green Garlic and Olive Oil

In this riff on the classic spaghetti aglio e olio (spaghetti with garlic and olive oil), green garlic replaces the traditional pungent cloves and lends a more delicate garlic flavor.

Kosher salt

2Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 oz. green garlic, green parts cut into 3-inch julienne strands, white parts thinly sliced

6 oz. thin spaghetti

2 tablespoonsfreshly grated Parmigianino-Reggiano

Freshly ground black pepper

Bring 3 quarts of well-salted water to a boil in a large pot Meanwhile, heat the oil in a 10-inch straight-sided sauté pan over low heat. Add the green garlic and 2 big pinches of salt; stir to coat. Cover and cook, stirring frequently, until wilted and softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat.

Boil the spaghetti until just al dente, about 1 minute less than package timing. Set aside about 1/2 cup of the cooking water and drain the pasta.Return the sauté pan to low heat. Add the spaghetti and 1/4 cup of the cooking water; toss well. Add the Parmigianinoand 2 Tbs. of the water; toss again. Season to taste with salt and pepper, adding the remaining water if the pasta seems dry. Serve in heated pasta bowls, sprinkled with additional Parmigiano. Servings: 2 By Jennifer ArmentroutFine Cooking 

 

Ideas Of What To Do With Mulberries

“Mulberries are very high in antioxidants, which help the body cleanse damaged cells which lead to many complications. They also contain large amounts of vitamin C as well as Vitamin K, Vitamin A, Vitamin E, really high levels of Iron, and Dietary Fiber which all help to give the body and mind incredible energy to live happy and healthy lives! They are also high in minerals like potassium, manganese, and magnesium and contain the B vitamins, B6, Niacin, Riboflavin, and Folic Acid.

Mulberries contain flavinoids and phyto-nutrients and are extremely high in anthocyanins which help to fight against cancer as well as reduce aging and neurological diseases, inflammation, diabetes, and bacterial infections. The berries also contain resveratrol, a powerful blood flow increasing antioxidant which you have probably heard promoted through the wine industry as their new claim to fame. Resveratrol is a powerful healer for many conditions such as aging diseases, inflammation, and a number one go to as part of an herbal protocol for the treatment of lymes disease.” Nutrition facts from www.ReturntoNature.us.06/05/2013 Family lifeGardeningHome and FarmNutritionThe Farm

Make mulberry pancakes. Use my pancake recipe, add mulberries to the mix and top with whipped cream and berries on top.YUMMMMY !

Make mulberry smoothie. 1 cup of yogurt, 1/3 cup crushed or juiced mulberries, 1 tablespoon coconut oil, 1 teaspoonsraw honey and 1/2 teaspoons, organic vanilla,you can add nuts or flax seeds if you eat with a spoon.

Make oatmeal with mulberries. After my oatmeal is ready I add butter, honey, raw milk and a handful of frozen mulberries to the top. YUM!

Make your favorite saladand pour fresh mulberries on top.

Make mulberry muffinsUse your favorite recipe and substitute mulberries for any fruit called for in recipe.

 

Amazing Uses for Mint

Make your own mint syrup
Mint syrup can be used to flavor your summer drinks, snow cones, desserts and more. Just boiled min leaves with one part sugar to two parts water to create a simple syrup.

Perk up your pesto
Add mint leaves to your pesto dishes to give it arefreshing flavor. It pairs well with basil or you can even make pesto using mint as the solo herb.

Utilize as an insect repellent
Place pots of mint around your garden (do not plant in your garden directly as it will take over) to repel insects that would love to dine there. Ants especially hate it so sprinkle mint wherever they seem to be a problem.

Chew for fresh breath
You can chew on clean mint leaves for fresh breath and to soothe your stomach after a large meal. Just break off a fresh leaf, let it sit on your tongue for a second or two, then chew away! You can also make your own mouthwash when you combine chopped mint leaves in 1 quart of boiling water. Strain. Store in the refrigerator and use as needed.

Give your potatoes some pop
You can add chopped mint to your roasted potatoes for an added flavor. Just chop and toss with a little oil, salt, and pepper and pour over your potatoes. Roast as usual.

Fancy up your beverage
Freeze mint leaves in your ice cubes for freshness and some pretty presentation. This is especially a great idea when planning bridal or baby showers. Guests will love it! Don’t stop at cold drinks, it is great in hot chocolate too.

Spice up your salads
Mint leaves make a pretty and practical addition to fruit salads. Just chop and sprinkle or throw the washed leaves in whole. You can also add to salsa salads for an instant pick me up as well.

Give your butter a boost
You can make your own mint butter in seconds. Just mix butter and fresh mint leaves in a blender or food processor until mixed well. Use on toast, muffins, and so much more.

Enjoy a spa bath
Add mint leaves to your bath and they will not only refresh and wake up your skin but your senses as well! You can chop leaves and add them or just add leaves whole. It is a way to get the spa experience for less!

Spice up steamed foods
You can add mint to steamed vegetables and steamed rice to get an added flavor. The flavor of mint is unexpected but pairs nicely with these food items is are a great way to perk them up and try something new.