2014 CSA Share Sign Up

We are currently sold out of our spring and year-round shares. However, we still have a handful of summer, fall, and winter shares left. There are also egg shares available as an add-on item if you purchase a CSA share. To sign-up, go to our online sign up page:  http://suncrestgardensfarm.com/csa/sign-up/

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Winter CSA Week 6

Fresh and Value-Added Items:

  1. Carrots
  2. Potatoes
  3. Beets Baking with Beets: 5 recipes
  4. Onions
  5. Fresh Winter Spinach
  6. Eggs-1 dozen
  7. Raspberry Jam-1/2 pt

Frozen Items:

  • Vegetable Stock 1 Qt: water, onions, celery, carrots, potatoes, rosemary, sage. bay leaf, salt & pepper. Uses for stock.
  • Minestroni Soup 1 Qt:  Vegetarian based. Roasted tomatoes, onions, garlic, water, vegetable stock, carrots, zucchini, green beans, beans, olive oil, oregano, basil, salt, pepper. Add freshly boiled noodles or rice to this base if you like, with some parmesan cheese. You could also add browned sausage or beans to this if desired.
  • One of these two soups:
    • Roasted Potato and Pepper Soup 1 qt: roasted potatoes, green and colored peppers, onions, garlic, olive oil, rosemary, chili powder, cumin, paprika, curry, salt, pepper. To brighten, add some parsley and parmesan if desired.
    • Tomato Basil Soup/Base 1 Qt: roasted tomatoes, onions, vegetable stock, fresh basil, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, thyme (instead of soup, add 1 can of seasoned tomato paste to this and pour it over cooked pasta of your choice with parmesan cheese and sauteed chicken, optional)
  • Raspberries 1 pt (frozen): whole berries, keep frozen until you want to use them. Great in yogurt and smoothies.
  • Blueberries or Blackberries 1 pt (frozen): whole berries, keep frozen until you want to use them.
  • Roasted Sweet Peppers 1 cup: Add to dishes to deepen flavor such as pasta, salads, dips. Add to pizza toppings, tacos, or create a sandwich spread with them. Purée in a blender with another 1/4 cup (or more) olive oil and salt to make a condiment that’s good for anything from burgers to steamed fish.
  • Roasted Eggplant Dip 1 pt: eggplant, peppers, onions, tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, chipotle seasoning. Use as dip for crackers, veggies. Works as spread on sandwiches and pizza.
  • Spaghetti Sauce 1 Qt:  roasted tomatoes, onions, garlic, peppers, olive oil, basil, oregano, salt, pepper (I like to add 1 can of tomato paste to thicken and deepen the tomato flavor/color and add salt/pepper/garlic to taste. You can also add cooked hamburger &/or spicy pork sausage, red wine, fennel seeds, and Italian seasoning for a lovely lasagna or spaghetti base.)
  • Roasted Broccoli 1 pt: roasted broccoli, olive oil, salt, pepper. Add to stir fry or make a quiche. Classic Pasta Primavera

This is our final winter CSA delivery, meaning tomorrow we will wake up and it’ll be spring! Perhaps spring showers tomorrow and some nice warm days this weekend with warmer nighttime temperatures to get this snow melting. At least I’ll stop looking at the forecast at that point…

As I’ve been spending a fair amount of time thinking about local food systems, I would recommend a book by Vicki Robin, “Bless the Hands that Feed Us”. She does a nice job a presenting what relational eating is and does when we know the local people who grow the food that feeds us. She often finds herself feeling that food is love, and I do agree. Food sustains us at our most basic level, we share it with others as a communal experience, and the greater our relationship with food and where it comes from helps create a local food system that creates a sense of place and gratitude.

Sometimes I feel like I regularly get to talk to CSA members (at least through the newsletter) but I would love to hear how things are going for each of you. In order to facilitate feedback about the latest winter farm share, I will be sending a short survey to fill out online. However, I do encourage you to let me know how things are good/bad/new ideas/etc anytime.

Gardening Interest?

I am hosting a GARDEN TALK at CFC school on Friday, April 25 at 5:30pm. We will have an overview of garden planning and a variety of resource tables covering many topics that spawn from gardening. So if you are new to the garden, need inspiration to get your hands dirty, or just want to learn more about growing, cooking, and preserving, come join us!

Eat Well. Smile Often.

Your Farmer,

Heather

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Winter CSA Week 5

Fresh and Value-Added Items:

  1. Carrots
  2. Potatoes
  3. Beets Beet and Sweet Potato Fries, Chocolate Beet Muffins
  4. Onions
  5. Cabbage, Green Roasted Cabbage with Lime and Sriracha, Sauerkraut in a Mason Jar
  6. Eggs-1 dozen Phad Thai (substitution tip: use ketchup in place of tamarind juice)
  7. Raspberry Jam-1/2 pt

Frozen Items:

  • Vegetable Stock 1 Qt: water, onions, celery, carrots, potatoes, rosemary, sage. bay leaf, salt & pepper. Uses for stock.
  • Roasted Tomato Basil Soup/Base 1 Qt: roasted tomatoes, onions, vegetable stock, fresh basil, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, thyme (instead of soup, add 1 can of seasoned tomato paste to this and pour it over cooked pasta of your choice with parmesan cheese and sauteed chicken, optional)
  • Roasted Broccoli Soup 1 qt: roasted broccoli, vegetable stock, onions, potatoes, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, thyme, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes. Add gryure or cheddar cheese before serving. Sour cream or plain greek yogurt can also be added if a creamier texture is desired.
  • Zucchini 1 qt: shredded zucchini, thaw and drain excess water. Zucchini and Corn Pancakes
  • Raspberries 1 pt (frozen): whole berries, keep frozen until you want to use them. Great in yogurt and smoothies.
  • Kale 1 pt (frozen)blanched kale leaves Raspberry & Kale Smoothie
  • Roasted Sweet Peppers 1 cup: Add to dishes to deepen flavor such as pasta, salads, dips. Add to pizza toppings, tacos, or create a sandwich spread with them. Purée in a blender with another 1/4 cup (or more) olive oil and salt to make a condiment that’s good for anything from burgers to steamed fish.
  • Roasted Eggplant Dip 1 pt: eggplant, peppers, onions, tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, chipotle seasoning. Use as dip for crackers, veggies. Works as spread on sandwiches and pizza.
  • Grandma’s Frozen Corn 1 pt: sweet corn, water, butter, sugar, salt Veggie Enchiladas with Corn and Black Beans

We’ve entered the intermediary change of seasons where I have switched to mud boots, but we have not officially entered mud season. The kids seem to need their outdoor gear/boots dried at least 3 times a day but it is wonderful to see them play freely outside again. The sunshine and warmer temperatures have brought much cheer and delight to all critters and people on the farm. 

The cold nights kept the spinach growth to a minimum since our last CSA delivery where I had planted the idea of fresh spinach soon. I hold out optimism for a picking for our next (and last) winter delivery as we will not have any in this week’s box.

The radish and arugula seeds have germinated in one of our high tunnels bringing with them a heightened sense of joy and renewal of our new growing season. More carrots and salad were planted in another tunnel to get a jump on the spring/summer seasons. It is simply wonderful to be able to work in the dirt and warmth to satisfy this internal call to get one’s hands dirty when nature is still thawing just beyond that sheet of plastic in our hoophouse.

In our grow room, the shelving units with lights are full of little onion, broccoli, leek, and cabbage seedlings waiting to make the journey into the main greenhouse this weekend. Baby tomatoes and peppers have also been started in order to be ready to be planted in the high tunnels where they will provide an earlier harvest in summer.

We’ve also been working with our new sprouted barley (aka fodder) system. We soak 10 pounds of barley seed a day and then spread them onto 2 shelves into our automatic watering system. It takes about 8 days for the seeds to grow several inches of fresh green barley grass and a solid root mass before being harvested for feed for our animals. We estimate 60 pounds of feed coming from the 10 pounds of grain. The sprouted seeds offer greater nutrition, enzymes and minerals in a more digestable form for the chickens and other farm critters. I continue to work out the automation kinks to the system, but am hopeful that this system will provide a healthier, reliable food source while also lowering our feed bill. The proofs in the pudding, so we’ll continue to monitor the fodder system and harvest yields.

Eat Well. Smile Often.

Your Farmer,

Heather

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Winter CSA Week 4

Fresh and Value-Added Items:

  1. Carrots
  2. Potatoes
  3. Beets Carrot and Beet Nori Wraps
  4. Watermelon Radishes
  5. Onions
  6. Cabbage, Green or Red: Chicken Soup with Cabbage and Apple Cranberry Walnut Slaw
  7. Pickles
  8. Eggs-1 dozen
  9. Raspberry Jam-1/2 pt

Frozen Items:

  • Vegetable Stock 1 Qt: water, onions, celery, carrots, potatoes, parsley, thyme, rosemary, bay leaf, salt & pepper. Uses for stock.
  • Minestroni Soup 1 Qt: Vegetarian based. Roasted tomatoes, onions, garlic, water, vegetable stock, carrots, zucchini, green beans, beans, olive oil, oregano, basil, salt, pepper. Add freshly boiled noodles or rice to this base if you like, with some parmesan cheese. You could also add browned sausage or beans to this if desired.
  • One of these two soups:
    • Mardigraw Soup 1 Qt: Vegetarian based. Vegetable stock, roasted tomatoes, red and green cabbage, carrots, kidney beans, onion, chili powder, oregano, cumin, caraway, olive oil, vinegar,sugar, salt, pepper.
    • Curried Tomato Eggplant 1 Qt: Vegetarian based. Vegetable stock, tomatoes, eggplant, carrots, onions, olive oil, garlic, curry, salt, basil, cumin, paprika, pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg.
  • Spaghetti Sauce 1 Qt:  roasted tomatoes, onions, garlic, peppers, olive oil, basil, oregano, salt, pepper (I like to add 1 can of tomato paste to thicken and deepen the tomato flavor/color and add salt/pepper/garlic to taste. You can also add cooked hamburger &/or spicy pork sausage, red wine, fennel seeds, and Italian seasoning for a lovely lasagna or spaghetti base.)
  • Raspberries 1 pt (frozen): whole berries, keep frozen until you want to use them. Great in yogurt and smoothies.
  • Spinach 1 pt (frozen): blanched spinach leaves Spinach Pesto 35 other ways to use frozen spinach
  • Roasted Sweet Peppers 1 cup: Add to dishes to deepen flavor such as pasta, salads, dips. Add to pizza toppings, tacos, or create a sandwich spread with them. Purée in a blender with another 1/4 cup (or more) olive oil and salt to make a condiment that’s good for anything from burgers to steamed fish.
  • Rhubarb 1 qt: chopped rhubarb Rhubarb Crisp

I have officially reached my disdain of the word vortex. I am looking forward to not wearing my 30 pounds of winter Carhardt gear, boots, hats, balaclava, leather mittens, and layers of clothing. The sunshine is at least a wonderful reprieve and I look forward to some warmer temperatures next week.

Inside the high tunnels, we do have spinach plants that are alive and are just waiting for a little break to get themselves going. I see some leaves of new growth and am hoping to harvest these for the next CSA share if the weather cooperates. There are new seeds planted and watered in another high tunnel in order to have some early protected greens for our spring shares. Some winter greens did not survive the extreme cold this winter and we could really see the difference between the high tunnel features, moisture levels in the fall, and the amount of covering over the plants. We are constantly learning, adjusting, and making plans for next time.

We are looking forward to planting a crop of early tomatoes in one high tunnel, a new approach this year. These tomato plant babies have already germinated and are growing in the heated grow room. Other seeds such as onions, leeks, and celeriac are also beginning their slow growth cycle to ready themselves for spring planting. We will see if the colder than usual winter temps and mounting snow piles effect the onset of spring and ground thaw. However, it does give me a little piece of mind to have 3 high tunnels and our greenhouse space available for weathering out the unpredictability of the weather patterns.

Eat Well. Smile Often.

Your Farmer,

Heather

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Winter CSA Week 3

Fresh and Value-Added Items:

  1. Carrots
  2. Potatoes
  3. Beets : Chocolate Beet Brownies. Borscht Soup.
  4. Watermelon Radishes
  5. Onions
  6. Cabbage, Red: 5 minute Healthy Sauteed Red Cabbage
  7. Pickles
  8. Eggs-1 dozen
  9. Raspberry Jam-1/2 pt

Frozen Items:

  • Vegetable Stock 1 Qt: water, onions, celery, carrots, potatoes, parsley, thyme, rosemary, bay leaf, salt & pepper. Uses for stock.
  • Minestroni Soup 1 Qt: Vegetarian based. Roasted tomatoes, onions, garlic, water, vegetable stock, carrots, zucchini, green beans, beans, olive oil, oregano, basil, salt, pepper. Add freshly boiled noodles or rice to this base if you like, with some parmesan cheese. You could also add browned sausage or beans to this if desired.
  • Roasted Broccoli Soup 1 qt: roasted broccoli, vegetable stock, onions, potatoes, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, thyme, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes. Add gryure or cheddar cheese before serving. Sour cream or plain greek yogurt can also be added if a creamier texture is desired.
  • Zucchini 1 qt: shredded zucchini, thaw and drain excess water. Chocolate Zucchini Muffins with choc chips are our favorite way to use frozen zucchini. Zucchini Muffins. Zucchini Fritters.
  • Roasted Eggplant Dip 1 pt: eggplant, peppers, onions, tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, chipotle seasoning. Use as dip for crackers, veggies. Works as spread on sandwiches and pizza.
  • Raspberries 1 pt (frozen): whole berries, keep frozen until you want to use them. Great in yogurt and smoothies. Raspberry Breakfast Bars.
  • Roasted Sweet Peppers 1 cup: Add to dishes to deepen flavor such as pasta, salads, dips. Add to pizza toppings, tacos, or create a sandwich spread with them. Purée in a blender with another 1/4 cup (or more) olive oil and salt to make a condiment that’s good for anything from burgers to steamed fish.

Fortunately, our winter CSA delivery days this year have been matched by our milder weather days. Well, that is all relative compared to the bitter cold we’ve endured most of the other winter days. It was really quite exciting yesterday when we walked to the mailbox with only our Carhardt bibs and fleece and felt that it was “pretty nice out” at a sunny 10 degrees. However, it seems that our warming spell will be with us for a while. This is exciting and inspiring as we begin to get our seeds started and prepare a high tunnel for early planting. We are inching nearer to spring and the increasing strength of the sun and length of the day brings us closer each day. 

Last week, I traveled to Vail, Colorado to visit a couple of farm employees from last summer. Beautiful snow covered mountains and heavy snow covered pine bows dotted the landscape. Vanessa, last summer’s intern, has worked in the hospitality industry in Colorado for the last couple years. Our week was filled with fresh powder skiing at Beaver Creek and Vail. I also enjoyed a cross country ski up around the cabins at Vail Pass with Sherry, another pizza kitchen employee. Sherry is the caretaker of several cabins and lives in a yurt seated above 11,000′ since 1998. Both gals relocate in the summer and this is how I came to know them here in Wisconsin. My travels have come to an end for the winter and it was great to go back and play in Colorado where I had once resided over 10 years ago. 

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Meat Cuts Available

Pasture-Raised Chickens

$3/# Whole Frozen Chickens (roughly 5# chickens)

Pasture-Raised Pork

Hickory Smoked Bacon $8/# (sold in roughly 1# pkges) no msg, contains sodium nitrite.

Bone-In Pork Chops $6/# (3/4”, 4 chops/pkg, roughly 2-3# pkg)

Pasture-Raised Beef

Lean Ground Beef $5/# (1.5# pkgs)

To order, contact Heather. Delivery can be made with your CSA box. Otherwise you can pick up your orders from the farm.

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Winter CSA Week 2

Fresh and Value-Added Items:

  1. Carrots 1.5#
  2. Yukon Gold Potatoes or Mtn Rose 2# Potato and Chorizo Tacos
  3. Beets 1# : Maple Teriyaki Beets
  4. Onions
  5. Cabbage, Green: Stuffed Cabbage Casserole, One Pot Meal: Chicken Satay (sub as needed)
  6. Pickles
  7. Eggs-1 dozen
  8. Raspberry Jam-1/2 pt

Frozen Items:

  • Vegetable Stock 1 Qt: water, onions, celery, carrots, potatoes, parsley, thyme, rosemary, bay leaf, salt & pepper. Uses for stock.
  • Roasted Tomato Basil Soup/Base 1 Qt: roasted tomatoes, onions, vegetable stock, fresh basil, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, thyme (instead of soup, add 1 can of seasoned tomato paste to this and pour it over cooked pasta of your choice with parmesan cheese and sauteed chicken, optional)
  • Roasted Potato & Pepper Soup 1 Qt: roasted potatoes, green and colored peppers, onions, garlic, olive oil, rosemary, chili powder, cumin, paprika, curry, salt, pepper. To brighten, add some parsley and parmesan if desired.
  • Spaghetti Sauce 1 Qt:  roasted tomatoes, onions, garlic, peppers, olive oil, basil, oregano, salt, pepper (I like to add 1 can of tomato paste to thicken and deepen the tomato flavor/color and add salt/pepper/garlic to taste. You can also add cooked hamburger &/or spicy pork sausage, red wine, fennel seeds, and Italian seasoning for a lovely lasagna or spaghetti base.)
  • Roasted Sweet Peppers 1 cup: Add to dishes to deepen flavor such as spaghetti or chili. Add to pizza toppings, tacos, or create a pasta sauce with them. Roasted Cashew & Red Pepper Spread
  • Sweet Corn 1 pt: corn, butter, water, salt, pepper, sugar Quinoa Salad with Corn and Black Beans
  • Blueberries 1 pt: whole blueberries, keep frozen until you want to use them. Picked from Cain’s Orchard in Hixton, Wisconsin.
  • Rhubarb 1 qt: chopped rhubarb Blueberry Rhubarb Crumble

“Today is a lovely day.” Isn’t that a great mantra to say each morning and challenge ourselves to find those answers? This can be a little harder to do on some of our weather difficult days of late but there are always an abundance of reasons why each day is a gift.

The last two days, Ashlan and Ethan have had a chance to learn about preparing winter shares as they have been home from school. They have learned about cross-contamination and the reasons why we wash our hands a lot to prevent spreading germs. They were also the quality control team helping wash and inspect our raspberry jam jars. They added the labels to the jars this week, so just smile when you see your label a little less than straight. It’s part of the small family farm charm that comes in your box, well at least this week.

For those interested in cuts of meat from the farm, I created a post with our price list. Just let me know what I can send in your next CSA box.

Many of you have been signing up for 2014 CSA shares. We are over 50% full for our Spring shares. If you are looking at a year-round or spring share, you will want to sign up soon to reserve you spot.

copy-image12photo 2 (2) Eat Well. Smile Often.

Your Farmer, Heather

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2014 CSA Share Sign Up!

Our online sign-up of all of our CSA Seasons is now available! We ask for people to reserve their 2014 CSA share seasons (spring, summer, fall, winter, or year-round) now and pay the minimum $100 deposit to keep their spot secure in our program. We do allow payments towards your CSA shares but ask that people have the current season paid for in full before it begins. We hope this allows some families to budget their food costs more easily. Of course, paying your share in full is greatly appreciated!

See our CSA: Sign Up/Payment page. You can go to this page, click on payments, and log-in to check your account balances or put a weekly share on hold if you are out of town. Emailing Heather also works if needed.

I hope that you will join me in our journey of seasonal eating!

DSC00887

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Winter CSA Week 1

Fresh and Value-Added Items:

  1. Carrots 2#
  2. Mountain Rose Potatoes 2.5#
  3. Beets 1# : Pink Smoothie Juice (for vitamix blender), Beet Salad (could make without greens)
  4. Onions
  5. Cabbage, Grn or Red: Shredded Cabbage Salad with Cranberries and Balsamic Dressing. I added a little soy and rice wine vinegar to this recipe to taste.
  6. Garlic
  7. Pickles
  8. Eggs-1 dozen
  9. Raspberry Jam-1/2 pt: Super Simple Raspberry Vinaigrette: blend well 1/2 cup jam, 1/4 cup oil, and 1/8 cup vinegar, salt and pepper to taste

Frozen Items:

  • Vegetable Stock 1 Qt: water, onions, celery, carrots, potatoes, parsley, thyme, rosemary, bay leaf, salt & pepper. Uses for stock.
  • Minestroni Soup 1 Qt: Vegetarian based. Roasted tomatoes, onions, garlic, water, vegetable stock, carrots, zucchini, green beans, beans, olive oil, oregano, basil, salt, pepper. Add freshly boiled noodles or rice to this base if you like, with some parmesan cheese. You could also add browned sausage or beans to this if desired.
  • Mardigraw Soup 1 Qt: Vegetarian based. Vegetable stock, roasted tomatoes, red and green cabbage, carrots, kidney beans, onion, chili powder, oregano, cumin, caraway, olive oil, vinegar,sugar, salt, pepper.
  • Zucchini 1 qt: shredded zucchini, thaw and drain excess water. Chocolate Zucchini Muffins with choc chips are our favorite way to use frozen zucchini. Vegan Recipe. Non-Vegan Recipe.
  • Raspberries 1 pt (frozen): whole berries, keep frozen until you want to use them. Great in yogurt and smoothies.
  • Roasted Sweet Peppers 1 cup: Add to dishes to deepen flavor such as spaghetti or chili. Add to pizza toppings, tacos, or create a pasta sauce with them. Red Pepper Sauce Pasta.  All the hard work is done!
  • Roasted Broccoli 1 pt: roasted broccoli, olive oil, salt, pepper. Add to stir fry or make a quiche. Quiche recipe (sub veg fillings as needed).

Happy New Year!

Jason and I were blessed to be able to enjoy a week’s vacation in St. Lucia last week. It just so happened this occurred during one of the coldest snaps we’ve had here in a long time. Despite worrying a little about how things were managing on the farms on the worst of the days, we enjoyed many of the wonderful things found around Soufriere, which is the bread basket of St. Lucia. One day we hiked the Gros Piton, an iconic mountain that juts out above the seaside, taking a solid 2 hours to scramble up the rather difficult rocky trail. Another day we hiked into the rainforest with a local guide and learned about the many plants used for food and medicine and were able to see the many farm fields scattered along the mountainsides growing plantain, bananas, cocoa, coffee, cabbage, tomatoes, and dasheen (a potato like root). We also enjoyed bathing in sticky sulphur mud found at the drive-in volcano, taking in waterfall views in tropical gardens, and snorkeling the beautiful reef just offshore of a few beaches.

We were able to experience lots of local creole food and enjoyed visiting with local people about living in St Lucia and the history of the island. We splurged one night and enjoyed sunset cocktails and dinner at the Ladera hotel where the view between the two Piton mountains is said to be one of the top 10 views in the world. The view was amazing and dinner on the balcony overlooking the Caribbean was a once in a lifetime experience. By the end, we were ready to come back home and besides a glitch with our airport transfer making the return trip home take a little longer, we are back to life as normal but playing a little catch up.

So I’m sure many of you are also excited to be back into the CSA rhythm of things! I sent out an earlier email with details of when the Winter CSA boxes will be delivered and the details of how to pick up your items for those who may be new to our program. All of the pick-up details and delivery calendars can be found on our website if you need to refer to them anytime on our CSA: Pick-Up Site Info page and CSA: CSA Delivery Schedule page. If you have any questions or concerns, please be sure to email or call Heather about them at anytime.

In each of the newsletters, I provide a list of what’s in the boxes. An ingredient list follows each item along with tips for use or recipes. I try to include a variety of colors to help provide balanced nutrition by eating all your colors/vitamins during the winter. Remember, food is thy medicine!

There will always be 1 quart of vegetable stock, 2 quarts of soup, stored root crops, eggs, and a variety of frozen vegetables and fruits. Items in the fruit category will always include one berry and something else which is usually thought of in a baked item (zucchini, rhubarb). The vegetable stock is made from 98% Suncrest Gardens vegetables and herbs, only the celery is not. Hopefully next year, we will even have our own celery for stock use. Vegetable stock can be used straight as is and should be used within 2 weeks in the fridge as no preservatives are used. It can be refrozen in ice cube trays or smaller containers if that serves you better. I use the stock to saute items in which replaces butter or oil. I also use it to make rice or couscous.

The bitter cold has taken a toll on some of our greens in the hoophouses. They will need a bit of time to recover, but we will plan to have spinach available during some of the Winter CSA season. For now, the cabbage will have to suffice as the “salad” component. I did attach a recipe above with a basic cabbage salad recipe. Jason and I happened to eat lots of fresh shredded cabbage with shredded carrots while in St. Lucia. I find a little hot sauce added in works well for me. The St. Lucian diet follows the seasonal availability of fresh foods and you typically just don’t eat what’s not in season (without paying a lot for it). I could appreciate that philosophy even though I longed for some avocado (which was not in season until June). The increased price to off-season foods helped people follow this which is something we don’t see as inflated as it was there.

The egg layers are coming into full-stride this winter so there will be plenty of eggs of available. If anyone would like extra eggs delivered in your box at $3.50/dozen, send Heather an email.

We also have a good supply of frozen meat for anyone interested. Our selection includes 3/4 of a beef going to Ledeburs the end of the month (from Jason’s farm), frozen whole chickens, ground beef, smoked bacon, and pork chops. If interested, I can provide prices and delivery with your next CSA box.

Later this week, I will open up the sign-up for our 2014 CSA season. This will be done through our CSA: Sign Up/Payment page. I will send out an email with instruction for the process which is similar to last year’s electronic sign up and paperless accounting system. I know there were a couple kinks with Dwolla payments this past year but hopefully those have been worked out. If you know you will be renewing your membership, you can let Heather know via email if you prefer. I have already ordered most all of the seeds for next season and am excited to incorporate some new varieties along with our regular items. We are going to grow some tomatoes in our hoophouses this summer, a procedure which allows us to control the watering cycle of the plants and provide early root heat and lasting frost protection. I also have many heirloom varieties of peppers to grow this summer which provides much delight to me as I am continually drawn into the vast selection, taste, and look of these long savored items. Every year has its challenges, and last year was without a doubt a difficult late spring. The beauty of farming is that we get to try again and we have hope for all the possibilities in the next growing season. I hope that you will join me again in our journey of seasonal eating!

Eat Well. Smile Often.

Your Farmer,

Heather

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Winter CSA starts Jan 15

This Wednesday, January 15, 2014 will start our first winter share delivery.

There will be 2 boxes for your household to pick up with each delivery, one frozen and one non-frozen box. The non- frozen items will be in a garage or covered with a blanket to insulate them from the cold. Please be sure to transfer your items from both boxes to your own box, bags, crate in order to reduce the amount of cardboard we consume. Those members who pick-up at Suncrest Gardens: boxes will be in the walk-in cooler and in the walk-in  freezer unless other arrangements are made with Heather.

The box unfolds easily if you turn it upside down, and then gently push the smaller sides downward and out to bend the side along the crease. This will free the tabs and allow the box to fold flat. Ripping the bottom tabs without folding them first renders the boxes useless. Here’s a short video if you need more demonstration.

2014 Winter CSA: Every OTHER Wednesday January 15th-March 26th

    • Jan 15
    • Jan 29
    • Feb 12
    • Feb 26
    • March 12
    • March 26…LAST WINTER DELIVER

Pick-Up Sites & Contact Info

  • Alma: 1245 Riverview Drive (Duvall Residence) Wed 3:30-6pm: 608-685-4705
  • Fountain City: S3072 State Road 35 (McFarlin Residence) Wed 4-6pm: 608-687-8389 (not winter site)
  • Winona: 1215 W 5th Street  (Kerr Residence) Wed 4-6pm: 507-474-1842
  • Suncrest Gardens Farm: Wed after 1pm/Thurs or Fri anytime: 608-626-2122

SuncrestGardens Pick-Up Site Guidelines

• It is your responsibility to pick up your share during your site’s scheduled hours and day/s. Unless other arrangements have been made ahead of time, produce that is not picked up during the site’s scheduled hours will be distributed or donated.

• Share pick-ups are self-serve and on the honor system. Your site will be open during the scheduled hours, but your site host will not necessarily be available. Bring a box, bags, or other container to transfer your items from your labeled CSA box into your own container to take home. Unfold your box and leave it at the pick-up site in a neat pile. Clean egg cartons can be stacked with boxes. For tips on how to break down your CSA box without tearing it so we can use it all season long, click on the video on our website.

• If you are unable to pick up your box on delivery day, please make arrangements for your produce ahead of time. A few options: ask someone else to pick up your box, ask the farm to not make a box for you that week, or ask your site host to hold your box for a later pick-up that day. Site hosts are not expected to hold produce overnight.

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