What's Growin' On at the Farm

Posted 8/14/2012 2:32pm by Minnesota Food Association.

 

What’s in your box?

cherry tomatoes
red tomatoes  

hierloom tomatoes (Cala Farms)
red onion
watermelon
red pepper
cucumbers (Chickenhead Farm)
green beans (Intrinsik Farm)
zuchini (Golden Karen Farm)
beets (Golden Karen Farm)
parsely (My Block Farm)
green pepper (Sebra Farm)
sweet corn (Sebra Farm)
cilantro (Sebra Farm)
jalepeno (Sebra Farm)



Next week get ready for:

corn
cherry tomatoes
hierloom tomatoes
green beans
watermelon
and more... 

Get creative with your CSA box…try out our recipes!

Shredded Beets Salad

Sweet corn, tomatoes, and cucmber salad

Herbed Zuchini Pancakes

Gazpacho

Things to remember

1. When you arrive to pick up your box, remember to check your name off of the appropriate roster. There will be one each for Summer's Best & Fruitshare members. If you are picking up both, you will need to check your name off of both lists.

2. Please bring a bag or other container to transfer your veggies into & follow the instructions for breaking down your box found in the CSA bin.  The waxed cardboard boxes will need to stay at your site so that we may pick them up the following week for reuse.

3. In the spirit of community, please do not open or go through other boxes. Boxes are packed identically each week and there is no need to look for a better one.  If you are concerned with the contents of your box, or something is missing, please let me know as soon as you can & I'll do my darndest to remedy the situation.

4. Planning a vacation this summer? You've got some options. Invite a friend or neighbor to pick up in your stead while you're away. OR, you can contact me at least 24 hours in advance to donate your box to Minneapolis Market (a foodshelf with dignity).  All donations are tax deductible.  We are unable to prorate or credit you for canceled or forgotten boxes.

 

Upcoming Events

August 19th—Dinner on the Farm

September 23rd—Slow Food MN presents a Slow Food meal at Big River Farms!

 

Notes from the Field  

Hey Folks,

Second Tomatoes are available for sale!

The tomatoes are on!  The tomatoes are on!  We are swimming in tomatoes here at the farm this week and it looks like we could be afloat for a while.  This is the time if you want to do any canning of yummy tomato sauce, whole tomatoes, or anything inbetween.  We can offer you very nice second tomatoes for $1.50 /lb.  We can sell them in 10 lb boxes and deliver them to your dropsite location next week.  I am working on the best way to do payment.  In the past we have just asked for checkes but this year we might get fancy with our website.  I will let you know. 

If you would like some canning tomatoes next week please send me an e-mail by Friday August 17th so I can put you down.  As of right now there is no limit on how many pounds you can order but please keep your orders in 10 lb. increments.  If you would really love canning tomatoes by this weekend please let me know and we can arrange something for pick up here at the farm.  
 
This is a poem I just rediscovered last night.  It is one of my wife's favorites.  It is simple and sweet and I thought it might be nice to share...

The Orange 
 

At lunchtime I bought a huge orange-
The size of it made us all laugh.
I peeled it and shared it with Robert and Dave-
They got quarters and I had a half.

And that orange, it made me so happy,
As ordinary things often do
Just lately. The shopping. A walk in the park.
This is peace and contentment. It’s new.

The rest of the day was quite easy.
I did all the jobs on my list
And enjoyed them and had some time over.
I love you. I’m glad I exist.

by Wendy Cope

Thanks,


Aaron


 

This N That

The box this week is our chiropractic special! Be careful picking it up. I think we can safely call this August Bounty.  There should be a little of something  for everyone in this box.  I was so excited to get enough watermelon again for you all. 

A quick note on the red onion.  We did our storage onion harvest last week and it is a beautiful harvest of both reds and yellows.  However, in cutting open some of the red onions we noticed a little rot at the top of some of them.  Without cutting them open we cannot know what they look like inside.  So...if you come across some rot we are sorry, every onion we saw with rot still had a huge amount of good onion still in them. 

Check out all of the great recipes that we have this week!  Katie, our training coordinator, hooked us up this week.  She told me that she often uses the sweet corn salad as a salsa and that it goes great on top of the zuchini pancakes

As always, if you come up with something good please share it with us!  You can send me your recips at brfcsa@mnfoodassociation.org

Happy eating!

Aaron

 

 

 

©2012 Minnesota Food Association, 14220 B Ostlund Trail North, Marine on St. Croix, MN 55047 

651-433-3676 ph.  651 433-5050 fax
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Posted 8/9/2012 10:49am by Minnesota Food Association.

 

What’s in your box?

cherry tomatoes
red tomatoes
sweet onion
watermelon
red pepper (Some Sites Only!)
summer squash (Chickenhead Farm)
cucumbers (Chickenhead Farm)

green beans (Intrinsik Farm)
zuchini (Golden Karen Farm)
basil (My Block Farm)
green pepper (Sebra Farm)
sweet corn (Sebra Farm)
chard (Mhonpaj's Garden)
Eggplant (Some sites Only!)


Next week get ready for:

corn
cherry tomatoes
hierloom tomatoes
green beans
watermelon
and more... 

Get creative with your CSA box…try out our recipes!

Sungold Tomato Focaccia

Chard stems with Saffron and Tomatoes

Fresh Sour Pickles

Zuchini Bread

Things to remember

1. When you arrive to pick up your box, remember to check your name off of the appropriate roster. There will be one each for Summer's Best & Fruitshare members. If you are picking up both, you will need to check your name off of both lists.

2. Please bring a bag or other container to transfer your veggies into & follow the instructions for breaking down your box found in the CSA bin.  The waxed cardboard boxes will need to stay at your site so that we may pick them up the following week for reuse.

3. In the spirit of community, please do not open or go through other boxes. Boxes are packed identically each week and there is no need to look for a better one.  If you are concerned with the contents of your box, or something is missing, please let me know as soon as you can & I'll do my darndest to remedy the situation.

4. Planning a vacation this summer? You've got some options. Invite a friend or neighbor to pick up in your stead while you're away. OR, you can contact me at least 24 hours in advance to donate your box to Minneapolis Market (a foodshelf with dignity).  All donations are tax deductible.  We are unable to prorate or credit you for canceled or forgotten boxes.

 

Upcoming Events

August 19th—Dinner on the Farm

September 23rd—Slow Food MN presents a Slow Food meal at Big River Farms!

 

Notes from the Field  

Hey Folks,  

Beautiful lovely September weather in August!  

I have to say that this last week of weather has been an absolute pleasure to work in.  The mornings have been fairly cool for our harvests and then the afternoon comes in with a fair amount of warmth but with a nice cooling breeze.  It reminds me of September and I am loving it.  

So the farm is now officially in its summer routine.  All the farmers seem to be coming at regular intervels and know exactly what they need to do.  And the best part of it all is how comfortable all of us here are with each other.

Farming brings people closer together than just about anything I can think of.  Maybe it is just the long hours or the commiserating about all of the little and big tragedies that are daily occurences in farming vegetables in the midwest.  But I believe it is also the acknowledgement of all the simple and profound joys of each day.

By this point in the season farmers are often getting pretty tired.  This is when we start to lean on each other more.  The tiredness breeds excuses for going over to talk with your neighboring farmer.  Maybe you just want the break from working, but the conversation is often what brings the most joy.  I love the small jokes that go around the farm each day.  Mohamed, a Bantu farmer, is now officially General Mohamed to everyone at the farm.  It sounds silly, but seeing him and then loudly pronouncing General Mohamed while snapping to attention, brings a huge smile with it.

I wish I could share with you all the moments of pleasure and grace we experience here at Big River Farms.  No visit ever conveys the true beauty felt here.  For that beauty only comes in the heat of the work and is shared fully by only those who do that work together over a whole season.  Slow steady joy is perhaps the provenance of only those who do slow steady work.  I love it!

Thanks,


Aaron


 

This N That

The box this week is Heavy!  I felt bad making Carly deliver all those boxes by herself today.  

The first round of watermelons are in and I believe most if not all should be delicious.  When picking watermelons the key is to taste about 20 melons to make sure they are ripe.  This is really fun and every melon we tasted was delicious.  If you do not seem to get a nice melon let me know and we will try again for you.  I am not a master melon picker. 

Zuchinis and summer squash.   If you are having trouble getting inspired by these guys try making some bread.  This recipe is from Katie, our training coordinator.  We have been asking her to bring us donuts every week and she just keeps letting us down.  However, today she brought us her beautiful bread and it was delicious.


As always, if you come up with something good please share it with us!  You can send me your recips at brfcsa@mnfoodassociation.org

Happy eating!

Aaron

 

 

 

©2012 Minnesota Food Association, 14220 B Ostlund Trail North, Marine on St. Croix, MN 55047 

651-433-3676 ph.  651 433-5050 fax
Unsubscribe from this email list.
Privacy Policy.

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Posted 8/2/2012 10:50am by Minnesota Food Association.

 

What’s in your box?

cherry tomatoes
red tomatoes
sweet onion
red early onion
broccoli
kale
summer squash (Chickenhead Farm)
cucumbers (Chickenhead Farm)

green beans (Intrinsik Farm)
parsley (My Block Farm)
basil (My Block Farm)
carrots (First Karen Farm) (No carrots for Roseville Site We will make it up!)
green pepper (Sebra Farm)



Next week get ready for:

corn
cherry tomatoes

broccoli
green beans
watermelon

and more... 

Get creative with your CSA box…try out our recipes!

Zuc-canoes

Green bean with carmelized onion

Quinoa cucumber salad


Things to remember

1. When you arrive to pick up your box, remember to check your name off of the appropriate roster. There will be one each for Summer's Best & Fruitshare members. If you are picking up both, you will need to check your name off of both lists.

2. Please bring a bag or other container to transfer your veggies into & follow the instructions for breaking down your box found in the CSA bin.  The waxed cardboard boxes will need to stay at your site so that we may pick them up the following week for reuse.

3. In the spirit of community, please do not open or go through other boxes. Boxes are packed identically each week and there is no need to look for a better one.  If you are concerned with the contents of your box, or something is missing, please let me know as soon as you can & I'll do my darndest to remedy the situation.

4. Planning a vacation this summer? You've got some options. Invite a friend or neighbor to pick up in your stead while you're away. OR, you can contact me at least 24 hours in advance to donate your box to Minneapolis Market (a foodshelf with dignity).  All donations are tax deductible.  We are unable to prorate or credit you for canceled or forgotten boxes.

 

Upcoming Events

August 19th—Dinner on the Farm

September 23rd—Slow Food MN presents a Slow Food meal at Big River Farms!

 

Notes from the Field  

Hey Folks,

Since we are approaching the halfway mark on the CSA season, I was thinking that this would be a good time to review some of the state of things on the farm.  Overall, I feel like the season has been very successful.  The weather has been almost completely on our side this year and our new irrigation system has been very helpful in the dry spells.
 
That said, we have had our share of trials and tribulations.  It is hard when you grow over 40 types of vegetables to not have many successes and a few failures. Here is a short list of our successes and failures.

My favorite success so far this year is our tomato hoophouse.  All those sungolds and red tomatoes you are starting to get in the boxes are coming from a space about 100 x 30 feet.  It is just jammed pack with amazing looking plants.  

Another big success is the fields of 3rd year farmers Vince and Porfirio.  Wow!  Their fields are spectacular looking and their produce has been top notch this season..

The worst failure has been our Strawberry crop.  Boo Hoo!  I miss having strawberries on the farm and my 5 year old is continually disappointed in our strawberry plants.  We planted a whole hoophouse this spring, got an amazing early flush (before our CSA season started), and then had beautiful looking plants that have not produced.  I believe the Heat of the summer has been a factor but I am not sure what the main problem has been.  To make matters worse we have had deer getting into the house lately and eat our plants.  All of this is to say that I do not think there will be many, if any, strawberries for you all this year.  I am sorry about this.

The other failure on my mind has been our lettuce crops.  We have planted 6 different plantings of lettuce and just cannot seem to get a good crop to harvest.  some of this has been farmer error with some of the farmers.  Much of the problem has been the intense heat.  Lettuce does not like heat.  We have about 6 weeks of lettuce in the field or started for the fall.  Right now it looks like the lettuce will do great.  Let's keep our fingers crossed for a good fall of lettuce!    
Thanks,

Aaron


 

This N That

I really enjoyed packing today's box this morning.  It made me happy to see the tomatoes mixed with broccoli mixed with the sweet smell of basil.  It is a fine box and I hope it treats you well.

One sad part of today's box is that we are already in a corn lull.   Our firsy succession came on fsat and hard last week.  However, next week we are sure to be back in the corn business. 

Kale, kale, Kale. The kale got harvested a bit late in the day yesterday and is a little wilty.  If you soak it in a sink full of water for about 20 minutes it should bounce back. I am actually very excited to have Kale again.  I love it!  I do understand that some folks out there find it a challenging vegetable.  I would suggest doing krispy kale.  This variety is best suited for this.  Just chop up the kale it bite-size pieces, drizzle it with olive oil and salt, and bake it at 375 degrees.  watch it carefully because it does not need much time in the oven.  When it is crispy on the edges, but not burned, it should be ready.  It tastes like popcorn and you will be surprised how many kids love this!

As always, if you come up with something good please share it with us!  You can send me your recips at brfcsa@mnfoodassociation.org

Happy eating!

Aaron

 

 

 

©2012 Minnesota Food Association, 14220 B Ostlund Trail North, Marine on St. Croix, MN 55047 

651-433-3676 ph.  651 433-5050 fax
Unsubscribe from this email list.
Privacy Policy.

Did you receive this newsletter from a friend? Subscribe MnFoodAssociation.org

 

 

Posted 7/20/2012 10:53am by Minnesota Food Association.

Thank you Bud

 Bud served as a soil fertility trainer in MFA’s Big River Farms Immigrant Farmer Training Program since 2005. Farmer’s in our program loved him, because he obviously knew his stuff, he knew how to communicate with farmers, and his passionate commitment was obvious. He was out here 2 hours before a training class, setting up the learning point spots, preparing the site. Bud served on MFA’s Board of Directors from 2008 through December 2011. He was a steadfast supporter of the whole organization and exceptional at interjecting the views of farmers and staff in our board discussions. So many times, I remember Bud saying something like, Hey, wait a minute, I am not sure I agree, what does this mean for the farmers (or staff). Or he would say, Wait a minute, this is not making sense, we need to put this in a new context. And every time, his comments were productive, constructive and right on.  He was excellent in connecting us with new partners. Bud led MFA’s new Membership Program Task Force and was MFA’s first ‘sustaining member’ in recent history.  Personally, I trusted Bud with my innermost thoughts and ideas, knowing I would get respected and confidential feedback. And most of all, In 2008, Bud gave me this tiny cactus that was started at the Student Organic Farm. He had it in his car when he came out to visit us and asked me if I wanted it. It was about 2” tall in a 3” pot. Today the cactus is about 12” tall and 12” wide and every 3 months or so it produces these beautiful white/pink blossoms. I nurture and care for it everyday, and everyday I look at it, I think of Bud. Thank you  Bud, for everything you did for us, for me, and for our community.

 Glen

 Glen Hill

Executive Director

Minnesota Food Association

Posted 7/17/2012 12:38pm by Minnesota Food Association.

 

What’s in your box?

cherry tomatoes
sweet onion
red early onions
beets
summer squash (Chickenhead Farm)
cucumbers (Chickenhead Farm)
zuchini (Golden Karen Farm)
brocoli (Intrinsik Farm)
cilantro (Intrinsik Farm)
dill (My Block Farm)
basil (My Block Farm)
carrots (Sebra Farm)
jalepenos (Sebra Farm)

Next week get ready for:

carrots
cherry tomatoes
broccoli
sweet onions
green beans
beets
and more... 

Get creative with your CSA box…try out our recipes!

Beet and Carrot Burger

Creamy Broccoli Salad

Five Quick Salsas

Cucumber Dill Salad



Things to remember

1. When you arrive to pick up your box, remember to check your name off of the appropriate roster. There will be one each for Summer's Best & Fruitshare members. If you are picking up both, you will need to check your name off of both lists.

2. Please bring a bag or other container to transfer your veggies into & follow the instructions for breaking down your box found in the CSA bin.  The waxed cardboard boxes will need to stay at your site so that we may pick them up the following week for reuse.

3. In the spirit of community, please do not open or go through other boxes. Boxes are packed identically each week and there is no need to look for a better one.  If you are concerned with the contents of your box, or something is missing, please let me know as soon as you can & I'll do my darndest to remedy the situation.

4. Planning a vacation this summer? You've got some options. Invite a friend or neighbor to pick up in your stead while you're away. OR, you can contact me at least 24 hours in advance to donate your box to Minneapolis Market (a foodshelf with dignity).  All donations are tax deductible.  We are unable to prorate or credit you for canceled or forgotten boxes.

 

Upcoming Events

August 19th—Dinner on the Farm

September 23rd—Slow Food MN presents a Slow Food meal at Big River Farms!

 

Notes from the Field  

Hey Folks,

This is going to be a short check in this week.  Everything at the farm is verdant green and hot and humid.  It must be July.  All of our spirits are high and the crops and produce have been a joy to work with.

This heat has been intense.  The days are starting to run ino each other and mix and blur.  We are working from 6:00 until 1:00 right now and then taking afternoons off and coming back in the evenings.  Did I mention the heat yet?

Everything is languid.  See Nay, a Karen farmer from Burma, says it feels like a Burmese Jungle these days.
And so it does...

Oh the joy of farming! 


Thanks,


Aaron

This N That

Finally we are getting some great broccoli out of the field!  We should be getting some good broccoli for a little while now.  I personally just like eating steamed broccoli with butter and salt but check out this great Creamy Broccoli Salad

The stars have alligned well this week and we have all the requisite parts to make some great salsas.  The cherry tomatoes are great in place of red tomatoes and the cucmber salsa is fantastic! 

Not sure what to do with beets?  My wife made up these wonderful beet and carrot burgers and I grilled them up with some marinated zuchinis.  It was delicious and even our five-year old loved them.

The first cucumbers of the season!  You’ll find two different varieties in your box – one is your standard market variety and the other long, unusual looking one is called Suyo Long.  It’s a traditional variety from China that has great flavor and makes very nice looking slices because of the ribs.  This Cucumber Dill Salad recipe is a simple way to enjoy your cucumbers or there’s always the simplest way to enjoy the first cucumbers of the season:  slice the cucumbers, chop the dill, sprinkle the cucumbers with salt, dill and a little lemon…a taste of summer.

As always, if you come up with something good please share it with us!  You can send me your recips at brfcsa@mnfoodassociation.org

Happy eating!

Aaron

 

 

 

©2012 Minnesota Food Association, 14220 B Ostlund Trail North, Marine on St. Croix, MN 55047 

651-433-3676 ph.  651 433-5050 fax
Unsubscribe from this email list.
Privacy Policy.

Did you receive this newsletter from a friend? Subscribe MnFoodAssociation.org

 

 

Posted 7/12/2012 2:21pm by Glen Hill.

Have you all heard of Terra Madre? Terra Madre is a network of food communities, each committed to producing quality food in a responsible, sustainable way. Terra Madre also refers to a major bi-annual conference held in Torino, Italy intended to foster discussion and introduce innovative concepts in the field of food, gastronomy, globalization, economics. Terra Madre is coordinated by the Slow Food organization. Each year, Slow Food Minnesota has been sponsoring folks to go to the conference event in Italy at the end of October, and this year Vince Xiong, a farmer in our program, has been awarded one of five scholarships. Vince is going to Italy to eat great food from all over the world! (and learn and network of course).

Interestingly enough, both the Slow Food movement and Terra Madre have been criticized for being an elitist movement, specifically on their stance on banning GMO foods.

 

I assume the criticizers are large multi-national corporations that want to nip the bud before it grows. The argument is that by banning GMO foods in the developed world (i.e., Russia, Poland, 18 of 19 Italian regions ban GMO food), corporations will instead export their foods to developing regions such as Africa and South Asia. READ MORE

 

 You can visit Slow Food Minnesota here  and sign up for our 3rd Annual Big River Slow Food Dinner at Big River Farms on Sunday Sept 23 from 2 pm till evening.

Posted 7/12/2012 12:35pm by Glen Hill.

I would like to introduce you to Vince Xiong, a Hmong-American farmer in his third year in the Big River Farms Training Program. Vince’s endeavour into the organic vegetable farming world is based on his values and traditions, and how to make a positive impact on the Hmong American community.  Vince is growing certified organic vegetables on 2 acres at Big River Farms this season with his father and mother.

In his words: Vince looking up

 “We have always grown food for ourselves as part of securing ethnic food that is not found in mainstream local grocery stores. Farming commercially is a recent endeavor for me and my family. We grow mostly traditional crops for market and a variety of our own crops for home use.

Currently, I am a farmer and on my way to completing my third year in Minnesota Food Association’s Big River Farms Training Program. My interest in being part of MFA’s program was to learn how to farm with a better system that embraced the ideas of healthy living which includes the health of the individual, the community, and the Earth. My ultimate goal is to secure a 40 – 100-acres farm, lease it to Hmong American farmers, and work alongside them, sharing the knowledge I have gained from the program. Part of this goal would also include taking my sales experiences to provide education and support with marketing and sales for Hmong farmers beyond the farmers’ market stall. Since 2009, I am also on the Planning Committee for the Annual Immigrant and Minority Farmers’ Conference, and since 2012 I am on the Board of the Minnesota Institute for Sustainable Agriculture.

 I believe that there is a cause and effect between the way we grow and value food and the overall health of our bodies. More and more studies affirm my belief that chronic diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart diseases are caused by the foods we are eating.

 Over the years as Hmong refugees integrate into the American way of life, I have witnessed the Hmong American community who are great consumers of vegetables getting sicker and sicker. Disproportionately, it seems as though Hmong Americans are suffering from diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart diseases at a greater rate in a shorter time period since resettlement in this country even though they continue to consume more vegetables than the average American. 

 From this stance, I want to better understand how sustainable practices and values can improve the food we consume and help us become vibrant and healthy citizens who value the environment that provides the better food. “

Posted 7/12/2012 11:31am by Glen Hill.

Have you all heard of Terra Madre? Terra Madre is a network of food communities, each committed to producing quality food in a responsible, sustainable way. Terra Madre also refers to a major bi-annual conference held in Torino, Italy intended to foster discussion and introduce innovative concepts in the field of food, gastronomy, globalization, economics. Terra Madre is coordinated by the Slow Food organization. Each year, Slow Food Minnesota has been sponsoring folks to go to the conference event in Italy at the end of October, and This year Vince Xiong, a farmer in our program, has been awarded one of the 5 available scholarships from the midwest. Vince is going to Italy to eat great food from all over the world! (and learn and network of course).  Terra Madre is in October, stay tuned for Vince's return and report about his trip. 

 

Posted 7/12/2012 11:22am by Glen Hill.

America as a nation was built on people looking for independence in choice. Initially it was about religion and governance, but now it is also about food, even about what milk we can choose to drink. Some people choose to drink raw milk (not pasteurized) so to maintain the healthy bacteria found in the milk. But health officials cringe at the other un-healthy bacteria that could also be found, and state and federal officials seem to find this too rebellious and concerning that a farmer would bottle-up raw straight milk and consumers would actually seek it out to buy. 

So the “government” steps in to protect public safety and muddles it. We are concerned about a very few individuals making a choice to drink raw milk, a very simple product and process which is easily traceable and testable; but we cannot make it known, testable or traceable, as to which products contain Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) which are complicated, untested, untraceable and have unknown effects on our bodies and health.  I find this a signature case of a prevalent problem in our nation’s food system.

Large corporations control what is approved and produced based on a commercial, profit motive rather than a public health motive and the government lacks the knowledge, ways, means, or political will to turn that around.  You can read more here and here.   

One reader’s comment summed it up for me: 

Virtually every month we read about a corporate food disaster impacting hundreds of tons of meat or spinach or tomatoes. When a corporation poisons America, we just take it in stride because corporate food is what Americans eat. When a couple of people get sick from a few quarts of tainted milk that actually came directly from a cow, the food industry wants the cow slaughtered and the farmer put out of business. The American food processing industry wants no competition from the source of all food, the farmer. The farmer is just that necessary nuisance that produces the "raw material" for the industrial process that turns healthy food (the raw material) into a chewable packaged product that consumers buy in stores. We must not do anything to tamper with that finely honed machine. If someone wants to eat raw potatoes, uncooked rutabagas, or drink unprocessed milk, God bless them, one and all.

Posted 7/10/2012 3:23pm by Minnesota Food Association.

 

What’s in your box?

snap peas (2 pints!)
carrots
cherry tomatoes
sweet onion
cauliflower
green onions (Chickenhead Farm)
summer squash (Chickenhead Farm)
zuchini (Golden Karen Farm)
cilantro (Intrinsik Farm)
mixed herbs (My Block Farm)
napa cabbage (Intrinsik Farm)



Next week get ready for:

carrots
cherry tomatoes
broccoli
sweet onions
zuchini
beets
and more... 

Get creative with your CSA box…try out our recipes!

Cauliflower Pie

Carrot-zuchini Bread with Candied Ginger

Marinated Vegetables

Things to remember

1. When you arrive to pick up your box, remember to check your name off of the appropriate roster. There will be one each for Summer's Best & Fruitshare members. If you are picking up both, you will need to check your name off of both lists.

2. Please bring a bag or other container to transfer your veggies into & follow the instructions for breaking down your box found in the CSA bin.  The waxed cardboard boxes will need to stay at your site so that we may pick them up the following week for reuse.

3. In the spirit of community, please do not open or go through other boxes. Boxes are packed identically each week and there is no need to look for a better one.  If you are concerned with the contents of your box, or something is missing, please let me know as soon as you can & I'll do my darndest to remedy the situation.

4. Planning a vacation this summer? You've got some options. Invite a friend or neighbor to pick up in your stead while you're away. OR, you can contact me at least 24 hours in advance to donate your box to Minneapolis Market (a foodshelf with dignity).  All donations are tax deductible.  We are unable to prorate or credit you for canceled or forgotten boxes.

 

Upcoming Events

August 19th—Dinner on the Farm

September 23rd—Slow Food MN presents a Slow Food meal at Big River Farms!

 

Notes from the Field  

Hey folks,

I wanted to take the opportunity in this week's newsletter to highlight a great program that we work closely with here at Big River Farms.  Havest for the Hungry, a program of the Emergency Food Shelf, is a fantastic program that has figured out a great way to support local sustainable vegetable farmers and get their healthy fresh produce into local foodshelves. 

Harvest for the Hungry buys extra produce from farmers at $1.00/pound and delivers that produce to local foodshelves to people who normally do not have access to local sustainable and fresh vegetables.  This program is great for our farmers here at Big River Farms because we have many folks who cannot sell all their produce.  It is a win/win situation becaus they get money in their pockets and folks get access to cheaper certified Organic produce. 

Part of the way Harvest for the Hungry is able to do this is thru donations from folks like you.  Last year we raised over $3,000 for the program and we were able to sell $6,000 worth of produce to them.  Click here to learn more about Harvest for the Hungry.  If you would like to donate to this wonderful effort you can do so here.

Thanks,

Aaron


Farmer's Story



Ti Moo in the Karen langauge means "abundant water or oasis".  A lot of the farmers in our program come from agricultural families and have farmed in the past to some degree. However, Ti Moo is one of the few farmers in our program who is relatively new to farming.

Born in Burma, Ti Moo studied at and graduated from university with a degree in mathematics. However, immediately after graduating in 1972, he left for the jungle to join the Karen guerrilla forces in the fight against the Burmese military and government.  As a Karen fighter, Ti Moo fought against the Burmese military junta and its violent campaign against ethnic Karen people for 35 years.  For more information on this particular conflict, visit Human Rights Watch  to read in depth reports and accounts of the violence. 

Ti Moo achieved the title of “Bo Ti” in the Karen army or the equivalent of Lieutenant in the US armed forces. Ti Moo’s wife also served as a medic for the Karen fighters. After retiring from the Karen military, Ti Moo and his family left Burma for Thailand and lived in refugee camps on the border for several years. During his time in the refugee camp, Ti Moo regularly taught algebra and calculus to both soldiers and fellow refugees. He explains that calculus is very useful on both the battlefield and on the farm!  
 

This N That

This week's box has many goodies to enjoy.  The cherry tomatoes are finally here and the peas are in full swing. These two items do not often make it all the way home because kids (and adults) cannot seem to stop eating them.  


I am excited about the sweet onion, cherry tomatoes, and cilantro combo.  I love fresh salsa!  We do not yet have any ripe jalepenos but in my house we have already snuck to the store and bought a few peppers for some yummy salsa.  I have also just made salsa with the tomatoes, cilantro, and sweet onion.  I just  cut the tomatoes in half, dice up half the onion and all of the cilantro.  Then add a little salt and lime juice to taste.  The other best way to eat the sweet onion is to eat it raw on a sandwhich.  

Our caulifower is huge and big!  We have never grown such big cauliflower.  These could be a bit intimidating but don't fret they are tasty.  You can use them in our marinated vegetable recipe or eat them raw with a nice dip.  If you happen to find a worm or some eggs in the middle of your cauliflower don't fret!  It is just a cabbage moth come to say hi.  The eggs will easily wash off the vegetable and the florets will still be tasty.  The cauliflower pie recipe is a good one for those who like cheese and potatoes.

One of summer’s highlights is all the fresh herbs readily available to add flavor to any snack or meal.  The herb bunch is your box this week is a mix of sage, fennel, thyme, chervil and parsley.  Each herb has its distinct flavor and food association.  A mix of fresh herbs together can be a new experience.  Our suggestion is to finely chop all the herbs together (wash just before using since many herbs don’t hold up after getting wet), separate out the tougher stems, and keep in a container in the fridge adding to any prepared food such as eggs, sandwich, salad, steamed veggies, or add all at once in something like the Marinated Veggie recipe.  

Remember that you can always go to our website and look up recipes for veggies in our archives.  We have many recipes in there for many of the veggies in the box this week.


As always, if you come up with something good please share it with us!  You can send me your recips at brfcsa@mnfoodassociation.org

Happy eating!

Aaron

 

 

 

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