Newsletter #1 – June 18, 2014

Melissa going away dinner Contents of Share

  • Dino or Red Russian kale (1 bunch)
  • pac choi (1-2 heads)
  • lettuce (2-4 heads)
  • spinach (1/3 pound)
  • arugula (1/4 pound)
  • green onions (1 bunch)
  • cilantro (1 bunch)
  • Easter egg radish mix (1 bunch)
  • Optional: half dozen eggs or sprouts

ANNOUNCEMENTS

  • Summer SOULstice Celebration & Dance Party, This Saturday, June 21, 7pm on. Performances. Dance Party. Bring a tent. A friend. Family. Food to share. Dancing shoes. Please do not bring your dog.
  • Pasture Raised Chicken is now available for pre-order.  Chickens are raised on pasture, all natural, young and tender. They are $4.25 per pound. Birds dress out at 4-6 pounds. We will have 50 birds for sale ONLY ONCE this season.  They can be picked up fresh or frozen. Please sign up HERE.
  • Calling all Bakers and Cooks!!!  We are looking for homemade baked goods or a dish for the Black & Latino Farmer Immersion, June 30-July 4.  If you are interested and able, please contact us.  We can provide ingredients or you can donate them.
  • We are looking for borrowed or donated tents for the Black & Latino Farmer Immersion.  Please contact Capers at capers.rumph@gmail.com.
  • RETURN YOUR BOXES and clean egg cartons.  Please leave these items where you get your share and we will retrieve them each week.  This is preemptive, as your shares will be delivered in bags for the next few weeks.emet stream hike resize
  • WASHING YOUR VEGGIES.  We do not extensively wash veggies before delivering them to you.  We will do some washing if there is a lot of dirt on greens and we always rinse root crops.  In general, this allows the food to stay fresher longer.  It also means you need to wash your veggies before consuming them.  For greens: fill a bowl with cold water.  Soak greens in water for a minute.  Drain water and repeat two more times.  Dirt will rinse to the bottom.  Bugs should float to the top.
  • Workday. Saturday August 16 – Chicken processing.  8-1.  1-3 Potluck.
  • If you are a shareholder, you have the option of volunteering 5 hours over the course of the season in exchange for an additional week of food in the fall.  Be in touch to schedule your work with us, or come to a workday.
  • All of our newsletters are archived on our website, along with lots more, including educational resources and recipes.

Food Justice News

herb bedOur food justice wisdom drop this week comes from a very astute 11 year-old. Neshima and Mom were discussing the recent World Resource Institute findings on feeding a world with 9.6 billion people in 2050, while driving home from an aerials show. Neshima noted that of the 12 “wedges” required to bridge the gap between the calories we have on earth and the calories we need for everyone (e.g. reduce obesity, reduce food waste, reduce consumption of animal products, reduce population growth in sensitive regions, smart farming, seed breeding, multiple cropping, soil and water management, degraded land reclamation…) she was especially intrigued by the connection between obesity and world hunger. She listens to enough adult conversations to know that many of us have some attention on losing weight and came up with a campaign idea called “donate the calorie gap.” Here is how it works. First, adults calculate the amount of calories we need to maintain a healthy body. Then we figure out the difference between our current intake and our ideal intake. If we value every calorie at $0.01, a person consuming 200 calories over the healthy intake would save $2.00/day eating healthful portions. That $2 can then be DONATED to programs that increase sustainable farming and food access all around the world, such as Ayiti Resurrect and Grassroots International. Cool idea, right? I’m in. Are you? Neshima thinks it will go viral and why not. Spread the word!

Recipe -Sesame Garlic Pac Choi
Simple, in season, and delicious.  We recommend this over rice or noodles.  You can also add chicken or tofu to make a complete meal.
Ingredients
1 large head pac choi or equivalent
1-2 cloves garlic
safflower or other high heat oil
1 Tbsp sesame oil
salt
  1. Slice off the base of the pac choi near the root to separate the leaves.  Rinse and drain.
  2. Coarsely slice pac choi.
  3. Heat the oil in a pan over a medium heat and add pac choi.
  4. Add sesame oil, salt and garlic. Toss until coated and clamp a pan lid over them. Reduce the heat and cook for 3-6 minutes, tossing occasionally, just until the leaves have wilted (the stalks should be tender-crisp).
  5. Toss the leaves and serve immediately.

Farm News

 

Since you last heard from us, it has been, well, spring.  In full force.  We have been busy watching the plants grow and chasing the spring weeds.  Which for the first time in farm history has been successful.  We have had a short stint of a weed-free farm, and hope to keep it that way.  This is a culmination of several seasons of honing our on-farm management systems.  By no means have we perfected anything, but it is a powerful affirmation that we are moving in the right direction with our intensive soil fertility management, raised beds, rotational planting and love.  Despite the brutally cold spring, the farm is flourishing early in the season, In addition to getting everything in the ground when it needs to be, we have also been able to focus our attentions on devloping our educational programming, making some major infrastructure developments, and even taking time to play a little.

heart handsTwo weekends ago was the Flower Festival at our dear neighbors the Grafton Peace Pagoda.  Junsan, the buddhist monk, caretaker, creator, and amazingly blessed soul, asked Leah and I to offer a “rap dance”, knowing that we are dancers.  So, what do you do when asked to dance for the Buddha’s birthday by your dear friend and monk? You dance in the temple before the Buddha shrine.  Leah and I co-wrote and performed a piece, birthed out of our love for justice, peace, our community and each other.  I know its not really farm related, but we really pour our hearts and souls into all the work we do, farm and dance, so, here is the dance.

We also said our farewell to Melissa, our apprentice who was here since April.  Melissa is off to  Gambia for two years to work with the Peace Corps training teachers.  We wish her the best, and truely will miss her dedicated presence, including helping us refine some farm systems that will forever bear her name.  We also welcome Crysbel Tejada, a fierce organizer and activist, most recently with the Tar Sands resistance in multiple locations around the country.  Crysbel will be with us for the rest of the season.  More about Crysbel and the projects she is involved, in a future newsletter.

In the past month, our dear daughter Neshima has also had some milestones of her own.  She performed silks trapeze for the first time and ran her first 5k.  Go Neshima!  Check out Neshima’s fabulous aerials performance here.  She is now spending several hours a day working alongside us, and wields a shovel and hoe with the best of them.

A big giant thank you also goes out to all those contributed to making June’s workday another beautiful time together.  Once again we were amazed by the many hands that weeded, mulched, and built a beautiful new stone wall raised bed to expand our culinary and medicinal herb plantings.

That same workday, we hosted a group of youth from Parsons, a residential foster care organization in Albany.  The young people were so proud of the bare-rooted weeds they purged from the pepper beds, the food they cooked together, and the raspberry leaves they harvested.  Leah also took them to do a nature sit, where each person sits in the woods quietly for 10 minutes where they cannot see or hear anyone else.  We have affectionately re-named this activity Nature is my Teacher, for she has so many gifts to generously share, if only we take the time to listen.  Their requests that we adopt them were both touching and heartbreaking.  Kids need farms for sure.  They need families too.