Today’s CSA Box – Week of January 15, 2018

 

 

*Click on produce above for more information and Recipes

 

Veggie Tips

Carrots: These are sweet and crisp.  Have them ready to snack on instead of candy or salty chips.

Oranges: Washington Navels, full of vitamin C and fiber.

Green Garlic: See our Recipe of the Week.  Green Garlic is picked before the bulb forms and dries down to the cloves many people are more familiar with.  Green garlic is milder than dry garlic. 

Kale and Mizuna: They say it is good to eat vegetables of all different colors — purple, green, red, etc.  Our kale this week provides some purple and the mizuna provides some green.  The mizuna is mild and delicious raw in a salad; lightly steamed for a side dish of greens; added to pasta; or in a miso soup.  

Butternut Squash: Even the seeds can be roasted and snacked on — this squash provides a hearty winter pack of nutrition and energy.  We have lots of recipes for the Winter Squash on our web site

News From the Farm | January 15, 2018

The first week back from the Full Belly break brought more than it’s share of CSA mix-ups, culminating when one of our drivers delivered CSA boxes to the wrong site!  By the time our office staff found out, the driver (who was filling in for the regular staff) was long gone and members were wondering where their veggies were.  Luckily, one of our kind and generous members volunteered to ferry the boxes back to their correct location, while in the background the host (who was out of town) offered support and encouragement. So we got it all straightened out, but the adventure really brought home to us the way that this CSA program relies on the contributions of so many people — the wonderful hosts who allow our members to pick up veggies at their homes or businesses, and our members who have patience learning how it works and who cooperate and collaborate to make it a success.

Thank you to all of you, and a special thank you to the heroes of our first week in 2018, member Jenny Postich who drove our CSA boxes to their correct location, and Danville Host Kerri Heusler who was able to provide up-to-date intelligence using her porch camera, from her remote site out of town.

Last week we wrote about the Organic Animal Welfare Rule that has been sidelined by the US Department of Agriculture. We encouraged anyone who was interested to post a comment on the government website. We know that many of you did.  As of today, Monday morning 1/15, there were over 60,000 comments!  Deadline is 1/17/18.  Thank you to all who submitted their thoughts.

One project that we completed over our December break was implemented by Full Belly owner Paul Muller.  He knew that it was time to dig out the settling basin where water from our packing shed drains. When potatoes, carrots and beets come in from the field, we clean them in the packing shed and the soil that comes off is drained with the water, to a basin below the shed.  The water percolates into the ground, replenishing the groundwater, and the sediment stays behind, ready for us to return it to the fields.  Because December was dry, Paul was able to dig out the basin, which is now ready to accommodate quite a few years worth of future vegetable washing.  Next to the basin we have a big pile of sediment ready to move back to the fields.

Blessings on your meals — eat your greens!

— Judith Redmond

New CSA Site

Full Belly is starting a new pick-up site in San Geronimo area. The start date and pick-up hours are yet to be determined.  This will be a Thursday pick-up day. See our web site to place your order. Please help us spread the word and tell your family, friends and co-workers about this new CSA site – Thanks!

Help us keep the CSA program running smoothly: A Review!

1. Please pick up your box only during the hours listed on our web site and sign-in sheet. We cannot guarantee the boxes past the designated pick-up times.

2. Please check the sign-in sheet for the items we have harvested for you and only take things listed with your name. Please sign your name when you pick up your items.  This can help us determine the owner of left-over boxes.

3. Do not leave a mess! Please nest the empty boxes in a stack.

4. Park in designated parking spots. Do not double park and do not block driveways.

5. Direct your questions to Full Belly, not to the host. Please don’t disturb the host.

6. Please notify us five days in advance if you would like to change your pick-up schedule.

Open Farm Day

You are all invited to join us at the farm on Open Farm Day, Saturday March 24th. Details will be available soon, for now we wanted you to get it on your calendar.

Add These Delicious Treats to Your CSA Box

We can deliver the following products with your CSA box to your pick-up site.  For additional information about any of these products email or phone us (800-791-2110).

Oranges – $8 for 5 lb bag  -OR-  $15 for 10 lb bag.

Apricot Jam – This delicious jam is made from Full Belly organic Apricots plus a little organic sugar and lemon juice. $8 for a 9-oz jar or $90 for a case of 12.

Peach Jam – Made from Full Belly organic peaches, plus a little organic sugar and lemon juice. $8 for a 9-oz jar or $90 for a case of 12.

Tomato Jam – The only ingredients are Full Belly organic Early Girl tomatoes, organic sugar and organic lemons.  A nice short list of ingredients and a perfect balance between sweet and acid. $8 for a 9-oz jar or $90 for a case of 12.

Marmalade – Bright and sweet, our marmalade is made with Full Belly Farm organic navel oranges, organic lemons and organic sugar.  We make our jams and marmalades in small batches to preserve the flavor and color of the fruit. $8 for a 9-oz jar or $90 for a case of 12.

Safflower Oil – Our organically grown safflower makes oil that is a deep, rich yellow color.  This oil is buttery and earthy in flavor.  It can be used in high-heat cooking.  Stored it in a cool, dark place, it will keep for a year after opening.  You can order 250 mL ($12) or  500 mL ($20).

Olive Oil – Organically grown olives pressed on a non-organic certified press.  $15 for 250mL  or  $27 for 500mL.

Red Tomato Sauce  – Made with Full Belly organic tomatoes harvested at the height of the summer when they are full of incredible hot summer flavor.  The sauce is made from Roma tomatoes. Other ingredients are organic salt, rosemary and oregano.  The bottles are shelf stable until opened — Refrigerate after opening. $12.00 for 24-oz bottle, $120 for a case of 12. 

Olives – Green olives, water & salt. $10 for a pint.

Pomegranate Juice – Unpasteurized and not diluted — this juice is just the pure product pressed from our organic pomegranates harvested late in the fall of every year.  This juice is an incredible source of vitamin C — it’ll cure what ails ya! The juice is frozen when we put it into your CSA box, but is likely to have started to defrost by the time you get it home.  Please store it in your refrigerator. $7 for a pint  or  $13 for a quart

Lard – Made with organic fat from our pasture-raised pigs.  Less saturated fat and less cholesterol than an equal amount of butter by weight. $9 for 16 oz. jar.

Whole Egg Pasta – Sent to you from our freezer.  Store it in your refrigerator and use within 5 days. $8 for 12 oz

Pizza Dough – For a 14-inch pizza. $6/ dough ball. Frozen when we ship it, use within 3 days.

Sesame Seeds – $5/ quarter pound

Walnuts – $12/ pound 

Cornmeal – Contact us for information about the  corn varieties that we offer as cornmeal or corn kernels. 

Sun Dried Peaches – $5/ half pound

Sun Dried Figs – $5/ half pound 

Wheat Flour –  Contact us for information about our heirloom wheat flour varieties, also sold as wheat berries. 

Veggie Tips

Cauliflower: Some ideas on how to cook the cauliflower  — Gratin or roasted.

Carrots: See Recipe of the Week

Oranges: from our orchard of Washington Navels, filled with vitamin C, fiber and potassium.

Arugula: Use this as a green salad, or one of the ingredients in a salad, with an oil and vinegar dressing.  It can also be lightly steamed or sautéed to go over pasta or with a quesadilla.

Bok Choi: This is one of many versatile Asian greens that goes well with sesame seeds, garlic, ginger, and a touch of sesame oil for flavor.  Steamed or sautéed bok choi makes a great vegetable side dish.  Also good added to miso soup.

Leeks: Make some leek-potato soup or if you don’t have all of those ingredients on hand, make some delicious braised leeks. In many recipes, leeks can be used in place of onions. 

Spinach: Here’s a recipe for spinach pie.  It uses leeks as well, and is a very rich, satisfying winter dish.  Although it is called a pie, it does not have a crust. Our spinach flan recipe doesn’t have a crust either.  The arugula and bok choi could be added to either of these recipes.  Both of them use milk or 1/2 and 1/2 plus eggs.

Tokyo Turnips:  The greens on these turnips are delicious — and the turnips themselves are quite mild. Our recipe for Turnips and Greens Soup uses the turnips, the bok choi, and one of the leeks could be substituted for the onion.

News From the Farm | January 8, 2018

With short days over the winter break, many of us were able to enjoy sunrise, sunset, and incredible clear starry skies in between, reminding us of the mysteries of our planet, as well as of human nature.  Here’s hopes for a peaceful and healthy year in 2018.  We will do our best to spread that spirit.

During the last few weeks of 2017, a few things happened on the organic policy front that are worth noting. We will discuss one of those things in this article, having to do with the welfare of organically raised livestock. Full Belly is home to a flock of sheep, several pigs and as of 12/10/17 a delightful group of 8 healthy piglets!  While many of our CSA members and farmers market customers have let us know that they would rather we not include farm animals in our production system, we have decided that the animals are an important element of our healthy farm, and we treat the farm animals with care and respect.  One of the most active responsibilities during the break, was the pressing daily need to care for the chickens, sheep, pigs, cows, goats, cats and dogs that make the farm their home. [Read more…]

New CSA Site

Full Belly is looking to start a new pick-up site in San Geronimo area. This is a proposed site with the start date and pick-up hours yet to be determined.  This will be a Thursday pick-up day. See our web site to place your order. Please help us spread the word and tell your family, friends and co-workers about this new CSA site – Thanks!

Veggie Tips

Your box this week is full of several kinds of nourishing greens.

Bok Choi/Tat Soi/Joi Choi:  You will get one of these in your box. We grow all of these Asian greens and in general, they can be steamed, stir-fried, stewed, braised, or added to dumplings or soups.  The stems are often juicy and crisp — a delightful contrast to the leaves. 

Karanata Kale: This is a cross between red mustard and red kale, one of our favorite greens.

Mizuna: A mild Asian green that can be eaten raw or lightly cooked.

Spaghetti Squash: Also known as vegetable spaghetti, with a mild flavor that pairs well with hearty ragu, curry or bolognese sauce.  Cut the squash in half and bake it face-down at 350°.  You can add a little water to the pan to prevent the squash from drying out.  Once soft (45 minutes or so) you remove it from the shell with a fork.

Salad Mix: This will store the least well of all of the wonderful greens in your box — so you should consider using it first.  We recently purchased a spinner so that we can send you your mix a little bit dryer than in the past.  If it is too wet when you refrigerate it, it doesn’t store as long.

News From the Farm | December 4, 2017

Your CSA box this week is the last for 2017.  Our CSA deliveries will start again in the week of January 8th. Frankly, we hope that you really miss us — We are YOUR family farmers and your source of fresh, local, organic veggies.  We try to create a surprise, a challenge and an inspiration each week. Should we put leeks in the box?  Or maybe our members would rather see something different and unusual, like the tat soi… Should we put broccoli in again?  It’s a staple kind of crop — people know what to do with it, maybe they would like another week of broccoli?  We want to be the muse that inspires your daily meals!  These vegetables that we send you didn’t come from a faceless, nameless wholesale supplier, they didn’t come from a factory, they came direct from our fields, harvested by hand, by people that care, that show up at dawn every morning motivated by the challenge of keeping the crops healthy and by the beauty of stewarding the few acres of land that we are so lucky to call home.

During the next few weeks, there may be some deep cleaning in barns and offices, and there may be some crops that require harvest.  Certainly the pigs, cows, sheep and hens will get all the care that they need. There may be some meetings, planning and analysis of the year 2017. But the rhythm of marketing, harvest, packing and delivery is going to be on hold for a few weeks. Only a small crew will be on hand and with the cold short nights, the growth of most of the crops in the field will slow to a winter pace.   [Read more…]

Veggie Tips

Broccoli: There are lots of recipes for broccoli on our web site

Carrots:  We grow a variety called Nantes — our gold standard for carrots, especially sweet and crisp when the weather is cold.  If you start by eating one when you pick up the box, you may be lucky to get many of them home with you!

Watermelon Radish, aka Watermelon Daikon: Our friends at The Fruit Guys have shared a recipe for Watermelon Radish Citrus Salad.  This radish is an heirloom Chinese daikon that is good raw, roasted or quickly pickled.  Roasting it will enhance its sweetness and temper some of the spice.  See our Recipe of the Week for information about making quick pickles.

New Potatoes:  We are harvesting our potatoes before their skins have set, so if you see some scuffed-looking potatoes, don’t worry, they are not old!  New potatoes, no matter what size are creamy and tender. Because they haven’t been cured, they won’t last as long as regular potatoes and should be refrigerated.  They can be steamed and served with herb butter, or roasted with other root vegetables.

Kohlrabi: This sputnik-shaped vegetable can be eaten both raw or cooked. Peel back the outer layer to find the center of the of this delicious and crisp vegetable. Try slicing very thin, drizzle with olive oil and sea salt to add to your salad or even eaten raw! If you want to cook it try roasting or even add it to soup. 

News From the Farm | November 27, 2017

Full Belly Farm has donated 5 CSA boxes per week to the Charlotte Maxwell Clinic (CMC) since 1992.  This program is sustained through the generosity of our CSA members who donate their boxes when they leave town, or purchase an extra box during the holidays, as a gift. We have little bit of additional information about this program on our web site

This year, Full Belly is donating $5 to CMC for every Yarn Gift Box, Sampler Gift Box or Wreath purchased by our CSA members through Thanksgiving. That donation of $400 worth of produce will supplement the donations of CSA members. 

This week, we heard from one of the CMC volunteers and decided to share her note with you. [Read more…]

Veggie Tips – Friday & Saturday Boxes

Cabbage: Napa Cabbage is another type of Chinese cabbage. For some ideas on how to cook it, check out Early Morning Farm’s blog post on 6 things to do with the napa cabbage in your CSA box!

Joi Choi: Joi Choi is a type of Chinese cabbage high in Vitamin A, Vitamin C and Vitamin K. The easiest way to cook it is to sauté a bit of garlic in hot oil, add in the cleaned bok choi (leaves and stems), and cook for 5 – 8 minutes, until the leaves are bright green and the stems are nearly translucent.

Cilantro: Cilantro is great as a garnish, but you can also add it to the food processor with some yogurt, lemon juice or red wine vinegar, salt and pepper to make a flavorful salad dressing or sauce for meat. You can also make a great salsa verde with cilantro!

Veggie Tips – Tuesday & Wednesday Boxes

Dear loyal Thanksgiving week members,

All of you who are getting your CSA box some time between Friday 11/17 through Saturday 11/25 are going to receive our special Thanksgiving box.   Note that we are including 1/2-lb of walnuts in the box.  We are packing these in a zip lock bag.  If any of you have a nut allergy, we apologize, please let us know so that we can keep track of that for future reference. We usually put our nuts and sun dried fruit in your CSA boxes once or twice a year, usually around the holiday season.

Carrots – Included in this week’s Recipe of the Week.

Dill – Great with the potatoes, or perhaps as a substitute for the cilantro in our Recipe of the Week.

Potatoes -These freshly dug new potatoes are creamy and delicious. Since they are new potatoes, the skin hasn’t set. If they appear scuffed, don’t worry. 

Rutabagas – We have rutabaga recipes on our web site .  Rutabagas add a wonderful flavor to soups or roasted roots.

Walnuts – Ready for breakfast yogurt or chocolate chip cookies.  It is also easy to toast them on a baking sheet in the oven, or a pan on the stovetop.  The toasted walnuts can be sprinkled over salad.

News From the Farm | November 20, 2017

Today’s Indian Summer Sunday was delightful here on the farm. The morning started with a slight frost and a haze drifted over the valley creating a crisp chill to the air all day long. Grape, pomegranate, pear, and walnut leaves are turning gold, reds or brown, falling to blanket the ground with a carpet of mulch.  The light frost signals that a year has turned. Crops have been harvested and stored. We have put aside an abundant harvest of winter squash, dried flowers, peaches, tomatoes, apricots, walnuts, grains, jams, sauces, oils, and seeds. In the age-old rhythm of seasons and farm, this crisp morning marks an end, the turning of fields to rest and the slow metabolism of low sun and colder days. It is so welcome here.

The prediction has been for rain to fall through the coming week, so after breakfast, household responsibilities needed attention—scrubbing the chimney of last year’s soot, and cleaning gutters. Then a couple of unfinished fields called to be planted ahead of the rain. Each year, planting cover crops and wheat with our grain drill is an enjoyable pre Thanksgiving activity that marks our slowing down. In this time we plant rain fed crops that thrive in the cold weather. We also put the farm to rest in the closing of a year. [Read more…]

Veggie Tips

Dear loyal Thanksgiving week members,

All of you who are getting your CSA box some time between Friday 11/17 through Wednesday 11/22 are going to receive our special Thanksgiving box. Note that we are including 1/2-lb of walnuts in the box.  We are packing these in a zip lock bag.  If any of you have a nut allergy, we apologize — please let us know so that we can keep track of that for future reference. We usually put our nuts and sun dried fruit in your CSA boxes once or twice a year, usually around the holiday season.

Carrots – Included in this week’s Recipe of the Week.

Rutabagas – We have rutabaga recipes on our web site.  Rutabagas add a wonderful flavor to soups or roasted roots.

Sugar Pie Pumpkin

Collards

Walnuts – Ready for breakfast yogurt or chocolate chip cookies.  It is also easy to toast them on a baking sheet in the oven, or a pan on the stovetop.  The toasted walnuts can be sprinkled over salad.

Potatoes – These freshly dug new potatoes are creamy and delicious.  

Dill – Great with the potatoes, or perhaps as a substitute for the cilantro in our Recipe of the Week.

Leeks

News From the Farm | November 13, 2017

Getting Dinner on the Table

Years ago at a Farmers Market, one of our CSA members opened his CSA box and said to me, sounding a bit exasperated, “I just need to get dinner on the table after work so the kids can go to bed on time.”   I don’t remember what it was about the box that he was responding to, but his comment worried me.  We hear similar expressions of frustration whenever we put too many pomegranates in the box — “So much time, so little return” –– or when there is 1/2 pound of spinach and the cook needs a whole pound to complete a chosen recipe.  

I have come to realize that we are in our own private produce reality at Full Belly, cracking open watermelons in the heat of the summer and devouring them whole, or crunching our way through an entire bunch of carrots from our ‘quality control’ CSA box before the rest of the vegetables have even been noticed.  You can find snacking-bowls full of pomegranate seeds in most of the kitchens around the farm these days, and huge oversized cabbages greeted with comments like, “I LOVE cabbage!” Full Belly interns often arrive at the farm with very little experience of beets, chard, rutabaga or daikon — but each of them is assigned to cook lunch for several dozen farm hands once a week.  Of course the results are varied, but I do think that those that arrive saying they can’t cook and don’t want to, leave the farm with more kitchen-confidence. [Read more…]

Veggie Tips

Green Cabbage:  Cabbage is packed with beneficial vitamins and minerals.  It can be eaten raw in coleslaws, but can also be added to stir fry and soups, or for a challenge, try stuffing it with a rice or meat blend.

Kohlrabi: Kohlrabi is a delightful vegetable.  You will need to peel off the tough outer layer to get to the sweet and tender middle.  It is good raw, grated into salads or dipped into dressing.  Be careful when peeling!

Carrots: Our winter carrots are the best!  We grow a variety called Nantes, which is known for being particularly tender and sweet.  They are great eaten raw, or can be pickled, chopped and roasted with a bit of oil and some brown sugar and salt, as well as great in soups and stews.  

Pomegranate:  If you have kids, I suggest that pomegranates be eaten outside with either no clothing or black clothing.  🙂  They are MESSY!  But they are so good for you that it balances out the hassle of red stains on clothing.  They are very high in anti-oxidants and reduce inflammation.  A true super food!

Chard:  We grow many different colors of chard including red, orange, green and white.  The stems and leaves are usually cooked separately, as the stems will take longer.  I like to remove the leaves from the stems, chop the stems into 1” chunks, and sauté them with some olive oil.  When they are almost done, add in the leaves with a small splash of water.  Chard is high in potassium and Vitamin E.

Winter Squash: If you get tired of winter squash, try turning it into pie or pumpkin bread!  I have made pies with all of the squash varieties that we grow on the farm, and they all work well!

Leeks: Leeks are alliums, related to onions, garlic and shallots, although they are much more mild than an onion.  I use them most often to add flavor to soups, but they can also be used any way that you would use an onion.  To wash them, cut off the woody green end and leaving about three inches at the top of the leek, cut down vertically right through the middle.  Swish the leeks in a bowl of water to get out any dirt that may be hiding in the rings.  

Spinach:  Spinach can be eaten raw or cooked.  It is rich in beta-carotene and lutein, which are both good for eyesight.   I like it best sautéed, with a squeeze of lemon juice, a bit of sea salt, and a sprinkle of feta cheese.