bok choi

persimmons

There are many types of persimmons but they are broken into two categories: astringent persimmons (like Hachiya), which are inedible when firm and need to become very soft and ripe before they can be eaten, and non-astringent persimmons (like Fuyu), which can be eaten hard, like an apple, or soft. Fuyu are short and squat, like a tomato, while Hachiya are pointy like an acorn. More information here.

quince

The quince is related to apples and pears and will be fragrant and perfectly fine on your countertop for several weeks.  Quince is often used to make jams, jellies and membrillo (quince paste).

stir fry mix

The stir fry is a mix of greens from our fields, usually the young leaves.  Generally we rinse our stir fry mix and then fry it quickly with a little bit of oil until it’s wilted. Dress it with some lemon and salt, or a little bit of your favorite vinegar and it will be ready to go!

kohlrabi

It’s true, you have to remove the leaves and peel off most of the skin of the kohlrabi — but once you get to the flesh inside, it’s a lot like a broccoli stem: sweet and crisp.  Slice the raw kohlrabi very thin and drizzle it with olive oil and sea salt; or add matchstick-shaped pieces to your salad; or use it for dipping.  If you want to cook it, try roasting it with other veggies.  You can also add it to soup.  

parsley

Someone once wrote us that “nobody eats parsley” which can’t be true, since it is ordered in quantity by many of our stores and restaurants, but the comment did indicate to us that parsley may not be fully appreciated for the amazing herb that it is. It goes well with potatoes and rice and can be added to most of your vegetable dishes. It is a source of antioxidants and vitamins well beyond what you might expect. 

apricots

popcorn

Our popcorn, a variety called Robust, is grown during the hot summer months and dried on the stalk in August and September. It makes a perfect snack- you can almost taste the summer sun with each bite!

It should be popped the old fashioned way. We warm up 1-2 tablespoons of oil in a pot on the stove (we always put one or two “tester” kernel in the pot and when it pops, we add the rest). Make sure to put a lid on your pot and, once the kernels start popping, gently shake your pot to keep the kernels moving. Once the popping slows, remove from heat, remove the lid, and pour it into a big bowl. The video below may help:

grapefruit

herbs

Full Belly’s herb garden is small- only about 1/4 of an acre- and its production varies greatly from year to year. Most herbs are great additions to any roasting vegetables and can bring great flavor to soups, meat dishes, and work great as garnishes. 

Dill is best used when it is fresh as it loses its flavor rapidly if it dries. Originating in the Mediterranean and South of Russia, dill is often found in dishes such as borscht, pickles, as additions to soups, potatoes, and cucumber salads. 

Lemon Verbena is a delightful summer herb that we often use to make sun tea. It is also a wonderful addition to any chicken or fish dish. 

Rosemary can be used as an addition to any roasting vegetable dish- we often use it with our potatoes. 

rutabagas

Rutabagas are a wonderful root vegetable that can add flavor to any wintery dish. Mashed, roasted, or added to soup, rutabaga is one of the Full Belly farmer’s favorite treats. Rutabaga originated as a cross between the cabbage and turnip. Though our CSA members often only see the root portion of this vegetable, the tops are also nutritious and tasty. 

Rutabagas contain significant amounts of vitamin C- 100g contains about 45% of our daily recommended intake! 

Full Belly farmers often prepare by peeling, chopping into 1″ cubes, and adding to any other winter root vegetables for roasting in the oven at 350 degrees. Enjoy!

lemons

Our Evergreen Meyer Lemon trees have been a beautiful addition to our farm providing life and color during the fall and winter months. Most importantly they produce a wonderfully  delicious and juicy fruit.  Like most citrus, Meyer lemons are packed with vitamin C that helps against infectious agents and reduces pro-inflammatory free radicals from the blood. Full Belly’s Meyer lemons are sweet and can be used in salad dressings, teas, and are perfect for making delicious desserts. Meyer lemons should be used more quickly than other lemons, though storing them in the fridge will help them keep for about a week.

pomegranates

Pomegranates are are rich in nutritional benefits- dietary fibers, anti-oxidants, and vitamin C. Full Belly farmers (and kids!) love to snack on pomegranates during the crisp fall months.

Pomegranates are often used to flavor meat dishes. The seeds can also be sprinkled over salads, cooked greens and desserts, adding a crunchy texture, wonderful color, and sweet-tart flavor.

Extracting pomegranate seeds can be messy, but our Hoes Down kitchen crew demonstrated the following method: Cut the fruit in half or quarters and immerse the pieces in a bowl of water. One by one, break the pieces apart, bending the skin side of the pieces inside out, opening up the membranes and expelling the seeds into the bowl of water. Scoop off the membrane and collect the seeds in a strainer. The seeds can be kept overnight in a covered container in the refrigerator.  Or leave them out in a small bowl and you will find that you love to use them straight as a healthy snack. Martha Stewart has a very helpful video, which can be found here

Alternatively, the pomegranates can be juiced with a manual or electric juicer. Those membranes that surround the seeds have a very tannic flavor, so you want to minimize their presence in the juice. If you have removed the seeds you can pulse them in a food processor and then transfer the mix to a sieve and let it drain.

This video also shows an easy seed extraction method: 

salad mix

Full Belly Farm salad mix is ready to go — just add some dressing. The mix is comprised of baby lettuce leaves harvested before their full maturity and sent to you straight from the field. A mix of lettuce, spinach, and garden greens, the salad mix needs only to be rinsed before eating. It should be stored in the refrigerator, and rinsed before eating. 

lettuce

It is very common for lunch at Full Belly Farm to be a large salad piled high with the various kinds of lettuce we grow (romaine, butter, oak leaf, red leaf, green leaf, sierra — the list goes on!), carrots, homemade croutons, and if we are lucky, some of Jenna’s homemade salad dressing. Lettuce is a relatively easy crop to grow and we cultivate it almost year round, except in the heat of the summer. Lettuce, a low calorie vegetable, is a storehouse of vitamins and phyto-nutrients.  Lettuce should be stored in in the refrigerator and rinsed before eating- it may still have a bit of soil from the Full Belly Fields on some of the leaves! 

okra

Whether you like your okra pickled, fried, or stewed in a gumbo, we have you covered. Full Belly has beautiful green and purple okra, available for a short time in the summer months. Don’t be quick to pass up this unique vegetable as it is packed with vitamins and high in dietary fiber. Okra contains vitamin A which is great for improving eye sight and vitamin K, which is needed to strengthen bones. As a high starch vegetable, okra is a good addition for thickening soups and stews. It is best to store okra in the fridge and eat it fresh to obtain its full health benefits.

cauliflower

Cauliflower is a tricky crop for Full Belly Farm to grow due to its particular growing requirements. When it grows well, it is a wonderful wintertime delight! Cauliflower contains several anti-cancer phyto-chemicals like sulforaphane, which protects against prostate, breast, cervical, colon, and ovarian cancers. Fresh cauliflower is a great source of vitamin C. Cauliflower can be stored in the refrigerator for 6-9 days.

almonds

Almonds are one of the most nutritious of all nuts. Packed with Vitamin E, which helps to prevent cancer, Almonds can help to reduce the risk of heart attack and help lower cholesterol. Our almonds come from healthy orchards, both young and old, and are never radiated. If you have not tried our almond butter, make sure to get your hands on some this season. (But beware, it is so good that you may become addicted!) Almonds, and almond butter, can be stored in the pantry. Almond butter should be refrigerated once opened.

pears

Pears are a great fall-time treat for Full Belly farmers. Harvested in the after many of our other fruits are done (like peaches and melons), pears are a great source of dietary fiber, anti-oxidants, minerals, and vitamins. Full Belly cultivates a small number of Bartlett Pear trees. Unripe pears should be kept on the counter top until soft. Pears can also be kept in the refrigerator until you are ready to eat them, up to one week. 

shell beans & peas

Cranberry Beans and Black-Eye Peas are two of our favorites in this category, although we do sometimes experiment with other varieties. We usually sell most of our shelling beans fresh, when the flavor is at its height. The beautiful Cranberry Beans have an earthy flavor and can be eaten in cold vegetable salads, or in any warm dish that calls for shelling beans. The Black-Eye Peas, bring southern bacon and ham recipes to mind.

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cranberry bean shelled

Check out this awesome Minestrone Soup Recipe for ideas on using fresh beans.