From the Land 4.24

announcements

The spring season is coming to a close. Please make sure you are up to date on your CSA share payments. If you have questions about your account you can email us at pccsa@prescott.edu or call us at (928) 350-1401. You can also ask us when you pick up your share on Wednesday.

Note from Crooked Sky Farms:
To all Crooked Sky Farm CSA members. Many of you  who have been with us in years past know that this is our planting season. Share lists at this time will be a bit repetitive so we really do appreciate all your support while we are getting ready for all your summer treats. Here is a preview of all the wonderful treasures you have to look forward to coming soon:

Coming soon…
 
End of April-summer squash
 
Beginning of May-various cucumbers
 
End of May-purslane and basil
 
Beginning of June-tomatoes 
 
Mid June-eggplant, okra and peppers
 
End of June or early July-various melons, corn
 
September-Pomegranates
 
We are also happy to announce that we have listened to all your requests and have planted 1500 fruit trees! Just a few examples include the following: 
Cherries
Pears
Peaches
Plums
Apricots
Nectarines
Apples
Pomegranates
 
Thank you again for supporting your local farmer and helping to keep Arizona healthy,  happy and thriving.
 
Warm Regards,
The Crooked Sky family

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food for thought

full share: kale, eggs, salad mix, grilling onions, choice of swiss chard/beet greens or Siamese Dragon stir fry mix, cabbage, red potatoes, and grapefruit!

partial share: Kale, eggs, salad mix and grilling onions!

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veg of the week

grapefruit: Citrus Paradisi 

Grapefruit is a subtropical fruit first cultivated as a hybrid in Barbados in the 18th century. The tree usually grows to about 20 feet tall. The fruit’s pulp comes in white, pink or red. Usually the redder the pulp the sweeter it is. The top producers of grapefruit are the US, China, South Africa and Mexico.

Uses: Grapefruit is wonderful in a variety of dishes but is not limited to its edibility. To scent your home, simmer a cup of grapefruit with half a cup of water on the stove. To scent your laundry mix grapefruit and water and spray after washing and before you hang it out to dry. Placing grapefruit rinds around your garden will help deter cats and other animals. For a skin exfoliant in the shower, mix two tablespoons sugar and one tablespoon grapeseed or olive oil in a cup of grapefruit juice. The sugar will scrub your skin and the grapefruit juice will tighten it. For a simple healthy snack, cut a grapefruit in half and slice the pulp in each half, making it easier to get at with a spoon. Drizzle honey on each half, eat. In Costa Rica, grapefruit is cooked to reduce its sour taste and sometimes eaten with dulce de leche.

Nutrition: Grapefruit is a good source of vitamin C and pectin fiber. Studies show that grapefruit can help lower cholesterol and burn fat. Grapefruit seed extract, GSE, is sold in natural foods stores and taken for its antimicrobial properties.

To store: Grapefruit can keep in the pantry for about a week or in the fridge for two to three weeks. Grapefruit can keep for up to a year in the freezer. To freeze, remove seeds and rind, then place in a mixture of 3 cups sugar to 4 cups water boiled.

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Svalbard Global Seed Vault
By Alex Deck

Its comforting to know that seeds from all over the world are being stored in a secure seed vault in Norway. The Svalbard Seed Vault is located on Svalbard, 810 miles from the North Pole. Construction was funded entirely by the government of Norway and began in June 2006. The first seeds began arriving in 2008. 

Seeds are stored 390 feet into a sandstone mountain called Spitsbergen. The entrance to the vault is 430 feet above sea level. Spitsbergen was chosen for its lack of tectonic activity, making it a secure place in case of a natural disaster. Local coal fuels refrigeration units that keep the temperature at 0 °F. The bank is so well insulated that even if the refrigerators failed it would be several weeks before the temperature rose to 27 °F, the temperature of the surrounding bedrock permafrost.

The facility has the capability to hold up to 4.5 million different kinds of seeds with 500 seeds each. In July 2012 the number of seeds in the vault numbered around 750,000. 

 

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Broiled Grapefruit
From MarthaStewart.com

  • 1 pink or red grapefruit, halved
  • 1 T light-brown sugar
  • 1/4 t ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 C plain low-fat yogurt
Heat broiler with rack set 4 inches from heat. With a paring knife, loosen grapefruit segments from membranes and pith.
Sprinkle grapefruit with sugar and cinnamon. Broil on a baking sheet until tops are slightly browned, 4 to 5 minutes.
Top with yogurt, and garnish with more cinnamon.
Shaved Fennel with Grapefruit
From TheFoodNetwork.com 

  • 1 fennel bulb
  • 1 grapefruit
  • extra-virgin olive oil
  • salt
  • 1/4 C slivered cerignola or other big green olives
  • 1/4 C freshly squeezed pink grapefruit juice
  • 1/4 C fennel fronds, chopped

Using a mandoline, slice the fennel into thin shavings.

Cut the bottom and top off of the grapefruit. Using a knife, cut the peel off of the sides, following the curve of the grapefruit and being careful only to cut away the peel and bitter pith. Hold the fruit in 1 hand over a bowl and cut the flesh of the grapefruit away from the membrane to release a wedge. Repeat until all segments are released.

In a large saute pan over medium heat coat with extra-virgin olive oil and add the fennel. Season with salt and saute for 1 to 2 minutes or until the fennel is warm and coated with the oil. Remove from heat. Toss in the grapefruit segments, olive slivers and juice and sprinkle with the fennel fronds. Serve immediately.

Grapefruit and Mixed Green Salad with Pistacio Crusted Goat Cheese Rounds
From spoonforkbacon

pistachio crusted goat cheese rounds:

  • 4 oz goat cheese, sliced into 1 ounce portions and partially frozen
  • 1/2 C all purpose flour
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 3/4 C crushed pistachios
  • vegetable oil for frying

salad:

  • 8 cups mixed greens, loosely packed
  • 2 grapefruits, cut into supremes
  • 1/3 C pistachios, roughly chopped
  • 2 oz jicama, julienne
  • 1 recipe, champagne vinaigrette

Preheat oil to 375°F.

For goat cheese rounds: Dredge partially frozen discs into the flour and shake off excess. Next, dip discs into lightly beaten egg and finish in crushed pistachios until fully coated. Freeze rounds until fully frozen, about 30 minutes. Fry each round for 3 to 4 minutes or until golden brown. Drain onto paper towels. Season with salt and pepper and set aside until ready to use.

For salad: Place mixed greens, grapefruit, nuts, and jicama into a large mixing bowl and toss together with vinaigrette. Lightly season with salt and pepper. Divide the salad among four plates and top each with a pistachio crusted goat cheese round. Serve.

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From the Land 11.7

announcements

Milk shares: as you noticed last week, you MUST return your jar (or pay a jar deposit – $2/small, $3/large) before picking up the next week’s milk. Please check your jar(s) in at the Bookstore counter.

We’ll have soup available for sale at the CSA today from Jojo, using all local ingredients and naturally-raised meats and dairy. You can purchase these 2 pound soup containers for $12, and you can also sign up for the Soup CSA and receive them on a weekly basis for only $10! I’ll have sign-up sheets/calendars out today – please ask for more info!

*FYI: if we don’t have enough members sign up, we’ll decrease the distribution to every other week.

Beef shares will be distributed November 14. If you haven’t already signed up, just let us know and we can update your contract. $100/share for 16-18 pounds of free-range beef, delivered frozen and all at once.

Where will you get your Thanksgiving turkey? Ridgeview Farms in Paulden raises GMO-free, grass-fed turkeys and has reserved several for us! The birds will be on the large side – 18-20 pounds – and are $3.75/lb. Notice the sign-up sheet next to the CSA sign-in sheet at distribution today, and let us know if you’re interested. You can reserve your bird for $25 deposit.

Remember – CSA distribution will happen on Tuesday the week of Thanksgiving!

food for thought
full share: tomatoes, orange spaghetti squash, onions, green tomatoes, strawberries, carrots, potatoes, and garlic!

partial share: tomatoes, spaghetti squash, strawberries, and carrots!

veg of the week

green tomatoesSolanum lycopersicum

Red AND green tomatoes in one share? Yes, because these under-ripe tomatoes are delicious in their own right, not meant to just sit around until they’ve ripened! Green tomatoes have a completely different taste and texture, and are common in Southern cuisine.

Note: some people are sensitive to raw green tomatoes. You’ll probably find that they taste better sauteed too!

Uses: There are tons of things you can do with green tomatoes! Here are some ideas from Tipnut:

  • Slice, lightly bread, and fry them
  • Pickle or make relish with sliced onions, sugar, white vinegar, celery seed, bay leaf, ground mustard, mustard seed, whole cloves, allspice seeds and salt
  • Make salsa with fresh corn kernels, fresh chives, fresh lemon juice, salt and coarsely ground black pepper
  • Make chutney with apples, brown sugar, malt vinegar, root ginger, red chilis, raisins, shallots and salt
  • Make jam with sugar, chunks of ginger, vanilla bean and fresh lemon juice
  • Combine with extra-virgin olive oil, ham, scallions, chopped garlic, bay leaf, low-sodium chicken broth, water, salt and black pepper for a delicious late-summer soup
  • Make a green tomato caprese salad with olive oil, white balsamic vinegar, minced garlic, brown sugar, salt, sliced fresh mozzarella cheese, Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper and fresh basil

Nutrition: While not quite as nutritious as vine-ripened tomatoes, green tomatoes are still a healthy addition to our diets. They are rich in vitamin C (immune system, teeth/bones/skin health), fiber (digestive health), beta-carotene (vitamin A for eye health), and calcium and potassium. 

To store: To keep them green, store in the refrigerator. If you insist on turning them red, it’s best done in a dark, warm and dry place like a paper bag on the counter.

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The 4’ by 4’ Salad Garden
by Alex Deck

Yes, a salad garden that is only 4ft by 4ft can keep a family of 4 eating a salad every day! In Arizona, in the winter, a cold frame can be used to keep the plants from freezing. In some areas a cold frame may not be enough. Using a space heater, planting your garden close to your house or keeping it in your house, near a window that gets lots of sun may do the trick. Here are the steps:

  1. Buy your seeds at garden or hardware store. Or order them online: Native Seeds/SEARCH (Based out of Tuscon, AZ)
  2. Start your seeds indoors, especially if its freezing outside . (Prescott’s frost dates are from 9/30 to 5/23) When plants leaves turn from light green to a tougher looking dark green they’re ready to go outside.
  3. Options for plants are: (fast growing veggies) – any type of lettuce, carrots, radishes, parsley, bok choy, spinach, watercress, cilantro, arugula. (Slow growing veggies) – onions, garlic,chives, mini cabbages, kale, chard, beets, parsnips, rutabaga.
  4. Plant in rows with slow growing veggies on one side and fast growing veggies on the other. This will help with crop rotation and watering. Radishes for instance need a lot of water and are ready to eat about 30 days after planting. Once you have eaten an entire row of one veggie, immediately replant with a different veggie to cycle soil nutrients.
  5. Fertilize with compost if available or nutrient rich soil from gardening store.
  6. Harvest regularly. The more you harvest the more the plants will produce!

Happy gardening!

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scalloped potato and green tomato bake
adapted from cooks.com

  • 8 med. potatoes, sliced thin
  • 3 lg. green tomatoes
  • 1 med. onion, diced
  • 1 c. flour
  • 1 lb. grated cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 lb. bacon, browned and crumbled
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 c. milk

Butter a large baking dish. Layer potatoes on bottom, then green tomatoes. Sprinkle on a little onion, flour, cheese, and bacon; salt and pepper. Keep layering until dish is full. End with a layer of cheese. Pour milk on top. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

strawberry tomato salad
adapted from meatless monday
serves 5

for the balsamic vinaigrette:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 clove garlic*, diced

for the salad:

  • 1 head butter lettuce, leaves torn or cut chiffonade
  • 2 avocados, chopped bite size
  • 1 medium carrot, julienned
  • 10 grape tomatoes, quartered
  • 6 strawberries, ends cut off and sliced
  • 1 cup yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Whisk balsamic vinaigrette dressing ingredients together until fully blended.

Combine the lettuce, avocados, carrot, tomatoes, strawberries and yellow bell pepper. Toss salad together, dress with the balsamic vinaigrette and toss again until the salad is fully coated. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste, if needed. Enjoy!

green tomato pie
adapted from veggie venture
serves 8

  • Pastry for a two-crust pie
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 4 cups green tomatoes, peeled and slice thin and small
  • 2 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
  • Egg wash of 1 egg yolk whisked with 1 tablespoon water

Place one oven rack on the bottom, the other in the center. Preheat oven to 375F. Roll bottom crust and refrigerate. In a bowl, stir together the sugar, salt, cinnamon and vanilla. Stir in the tomatoes as they’re prepped. Roll the top crust. Pour the tomato mixture into the bottom crust, dot with butter. Arrange top crust over top and seal and crimp the edges. Vent the top crust, then brush the flat portion of the top crust (not the edges) with egg wash.

Place the pie on the bottom rack and bake for 20 minutes. Move to center rack and bake for 20 minutes. Cover the edges with a pie rim and bake for another 20 minutes or until top crust is brown and bottom crust is golden. Let cool to set before serving.

From the Land 8/29

welcome back to PCCSA!

We’re happy to be back! This week begins the 2012-13 CSA distribution, as well as the re-opening of the CSA Store. Please help spread the word across campus that the CSA Store is open to students, staff, faculty, and the general public for individual item purchases of seasonal local produce, eggs, honey, jam, handmade pasta, and even bread. We are also still accepting new members to the CSA Share program, which will occasionally include some of the items listed above, so please tell your friends!

Every week we send out a newsletter, full of information about the CSA, the shares, nutrition, how to use the CSA items, upcoming events related to food, and – of course – recipes! Here’s how you can help:

  • Let us know if there’s a specific produce item you would like more information on. We send out the list via email and Facebook (Prescott Farmers Market and CSA Facebook page) each Monday so please let us know by Tuesday if there’s something you’re unfamiliar with. You can email us (pccsa@prescott.edu) or post to the Facebook wall.
  • Please share any upcoming food or agriculture related events that you’d like to announce or invite folks to
  • Do you have a knack for writing? Like to review movies or books, write up events, or explore a food issue through writing? Have a recipe or cooking tip you’d like to share? We’d love to publish you! We focus on food and agriculture related topics. Send ideas, questions and written pieces to pccsa@prescott.edu.
  • Please make sure to read the newsletter each week! We’ll make all announcements through the newsletter, so it’s your best way of staying up to date. Please don’t hesitate to call or email if you have any questions.

food for thought
full share: carrots, garlic, mixed summer squash, tomatoes, eggplant, okra, bell peppers, and cucumbers

partial share: carrots, garlic, summer squash, and tomatoes

upcoming and ongoing

Prescott Farmers Market
every Saturday morning (7.30am-noon) through October 27
Yavapai College parking lots D&E – 1100 E. Sheldon St.
great place to supplement your CSA shares with other local products

Prescott Valley Farmers Market
Friday evenings (4-7pm) through September 28
Tim’s Toyota parking lot – corner of Glassford Hill and Florentine

Chino Valley Farmers Market
Thursday afternoons (3-6pm) through October 18
BonnFire Grill Restaurant – 1667 S. Highway 89

veg of the week

garlic: Allium sativum

Closely related to the onion, shallot, leek and chive, garlic’s pungent flavor has been popular with humans for over 7000 years. It was first cultivated in Asia, but its use as both food and medicine has spread across the globe and is commonly used in cuisine of every nationality. China remains the number one producer (77% of the world’s production), but there are small growers that produce garlic around the country, including several farmers in our area. This week our garlic comes from Rabbit Run Farm in Skull Valley.

uses: The bulb is the most commonly used part of the garlic plant. Most often, the plant is dried, the green stalk is stripped off, and the cloves of the bulb are used individually. Bake whole cloves into bread, chop fine and add to dressings and sauces, infuse oil with raw whole garlic cloves, or chop and add to…well, I think just about everything! The spicy pungent flavor mellows when cooked to a sweet addition to any savory dish.

nutrition: Garlic has been found to have antimicrobial, antibacterial, and antifungal properties. Studies show it can help prevent heart disease, many forms of cancer, and improve cardiovascular health. It has been traditionally used to fight the common cold and as an expectorant. For medicinal use, chop a clove and swallow with water.

to store: Keep garlic dry and relatively warm. It is sometimes sold as braids that can be hung, or store the bulbs in a basket in the kitchen. Dry garlic will usually last a month or more. Peeled garlic can be stored in oil or vinegar, but should be kept in the refrigerator and eaten within a week.

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Rabbit Run Farm

Meet Matt Hyde and Sarah Wertz, (relatively) beginning farmers on 2 acres in Skull Valley, AZ. After a couple years apprenticing at another area farm, they are now in their third year of growing on their own, raising vegetables, herbs, flowers, laying hens, and occasional meat birds. From their website:

Our farming philosophy is to practice ecologically responsible growing methods that will result in the tastiest, most nutritious, superior quality vegetables; to build a community based on sharing and enjoying real food; and to learn and share small-scale agricultural skills.

Matt and Sarah have found their niche producing beautiful and delicious produce without pesticides or synthetic fertilizers. Compost, crop rotation, cover crops and fallow seasons all contribute to the health of their soil, which is evident in the health of their produce.

Matt and Sarah are also the Farm Managers of Prescott College’s agroecology farm at Jenner Farm in Skull Valley. They provide hands-on experience for Agroecology students who study soil, growing techniques, and crops during a summer-long intensive. Not only are they amazing farmers and great examples of the resurgence of young people to sustainable agriculture, they have an amazing way of creating community around food and agriculture.

As we all know, the farmer population is aging, but the movement of young farmers to the land is steadily increasing. These young enthusiasts, many of them college educated, have found their passions in food, organic farming practices, small-scale production, permaculture, and rural or urban living, and the ways that this lifestyle intersects with education, music, natural building, food policy, and social justice. The websites thegreenhorns.net and youngfarmers.org provide networking and job opportunities, peer-to-peer learning, events, actions and support for young and beginning farmers and farm enthusiasts, with the understanding that our agricultural future depends on more young farmers that receive support for their ideas, training, and necessary policy change that will ensure their success.

Rabbit Run Farm attends farmers markets in Prescott and Flagstaff, and is one of our main producers for the Prescott College CSA. You’ll notice that all of our produce this week is from them. If you haven’t met them, make sure you stop by their booth at the Prescott Farmers Market. Let them know you’re a PCCSA member, because they love knowing where their food goes as much as you love knowing where it comes from!

Check out their blog at http://rabbitrunfarm.blogspot.com/

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beef, okra, potato and carrot soup
adapted from cookthink
serves 2-4

*can also be made vegetarian, of course!

  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 2 ribs celery, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium carrot, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound beef stew meat (chuck or round roast), cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 3/4 pound okra, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 3 medium waxy potatoes, cubed
  • 1/2 pound cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 5 cups water
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped parsley
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

Prep the onion, celery and carrot. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the vegetables and season them with a generous sprinkling of salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 8-10 minutes.

Meanwhile, prep the beef, okra, potatoes and tomatoes. Season the beef generously all over with salt and pepper. Add these to the pot and stir. Cook, stirring occasionally, 4-6 more minutes.

Add the water and bring the soup to a boil. Immediately reduce to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the beef and potatoes are tender, 20-30 minutes.

Stir in the minced garlic, parsley and lemon juice. Add more salt and pepper to taste.

eggplant, squash and tomato salad with roasted garlic vinaigrette
adapted from epicurious
serves 4

  • 3 large garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • Olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar or red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 large Japanese eggplants, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
  • 2 large yellow summer squash or zucchini, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
  • 2 tomatoes, thinly sliced
  • 10 fresh basil leaves, chopped

Preheat oven to 350°F. Place unpeeled garlic cloves in small baking dish. Drizzle garlic with olive oil and toss to coat. Roast garlic until very tender, about 25 minutes. Cool. Peel garlic and mince. Transfer to small bowl. Mix in balsamic vinegar. Gradually mix in 1/2 cup olive oil. Set dressing aside.

Preheat broiler. Arrange eggplant slices in single layer on broiler pan. Brush both sides with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Broil until beginning to brown, about 4 minutes per side. Arrange squash slices in single layer on broiler pan. Brush tops of squash with olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Broil until tops begin to brown, about 4 minutes.

Alternate eggplant and squash slices around edge of serving platter, overlapping slightly. Arrange tomato slices in center of platter. Sprinkle tomatoes with salt and pepper. Drizzle dressing over salad. (Salad can be prepared 2 hours ahead. Cover and let stand at room temperature.) Sprinkle salad with chopped fresh basil and serve.

bell pepper, tomato, cucumber and grilled bread salad
adapted from my recipes
serves 6

*add grilled chicken to turn this into a main dish

  • 4 slices day-old country-style bread
  • 4 cups coarsely chopped tomatoes (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 1 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 3/4 cup chopped yellow bell pepper
  • 3/4 cup chopped orange bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup torn fresh basil leaves
  • 1 English cucumber, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Prepare grill to medium-high heat.

Place bread slices on grill rack; grill 1 minute on each side or until golden brown with grill marks. Remove from grill; tear bread into 1-inch pieces.

Combine tomatoes, onion, bell peppers, basil, and cucumber in a large bowl. Add bread; toss gently.

Combine vinegar, black pepper, salt, and garlic in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Gradually add oil, stirring constantly with a whisk. Drizzle dressing over salad; toss gently to coat. Cover and chill 20 minutes before serving.