Newsletter #9 – August 14, 2013 Brought to you by Capers, Alicia, and Sade!

Contents of Share

carrot out-takes

  • 1/2 lb Yellow Beans
  • 1 lb Green Beans
  • 8 Cucumbers : Japanese and/or Marketmore. Might we suggest making pickles?!?
  • 2 heads of Garlic
  • 1 bunch Chard
  • 1 SUPER MASSIVE bunch Red Russian and/or Lacinato Kale
  • 1 large (or 2 small) head of Celery
  • 1 bunch Collards
  • 1 bunch Carrots
  • 1 SUPER MASSIVE bunch Italian Basil, Lemon Basil, or Curly Leaf Parsley
  • 1 dozen Eggs -or- Sprout Mix

Food Justice News : Capers (pt 1) and Alicia (pt  2)

Pt 1 :
Here at Soul Fire, inspiration is something of a constant — wether in the form of the written word, or the spoken word, or in the many forms of vegetables ripening quietly on their vines, or in the many hundred inspired bodies and/or souls that pass through this land and community. Inspiration is linked seamlessly to empowerment. Idea to action of every magnitude.
One aspect of existing here that has been wholly new to me, and has struck a particularly inspiring tone, is the discussion around and reverence towards ancestry.  The theme of ancestry occupies a continuous thread of conversation that’s often picked up in the fields, around the breakfast table, and on the dance floor — ancestry as is relates to family, belief, land, food, and the future, to name but a few.
Searching around in an effort to deepen my understanding of other people’s perceptions of ancestry, and specifically ancestry’s connection to land, I came across a TED talk given by an activist named Winona Laduke. Ms Laduke powerfully weaves the narratives and struggles of her Ojibwe people with those of native peoples worldwide — she relates to “food” as her relative, as an ancestor. In her all-too-brief lecture, she touches on ideas of cosmogeneology, genetic engineering, land rights of indigenous peoples, and the efforts being undertaken to preserve sacred foods.
I understand that you are all very. busy. people. but I promise that these sixteen minutes are well worth your time.

Pt 2:

As Winona LaDuke says in her talk, “It’s what the future looks like for all of us.” One current movement called the Two Row Wampum Renewal campaign seeks to directly address the ongoing and future relationship between native peoples in the United States, their non-native allies, and our natural environment.

This year marks the 400th anniversary of the first agreement between native peoples and Europeans settlers, known as the Two Row Wampum Treaty, which promised friendship and environmental stewardship between the Haudenosaunee and Dutch settlers “as long as the grass is green, as long as the rivers run downhill, and as long as the sun rises in the East and sets in the West.” To commemorate this treaty, members of the Onondaga tribe and non-native allies completed a 140 mile canoe trip down the Hudson, from Albany to New York City in order to reaffirm the alliance of friendship as well as advocate and educate about environmental stewardship issues such as fracking.

Last Friday on World Indigenous Peoples Day, the canoers ended their journey in New York City, docking at a pier in Manhattan for a brief ceremony before commencing to march through downtown to the United Nations. Their message was well received by the Consul General of the Netherlands, news media like Democracy Now (see clip here), as well as peace walkers from across New York.  

Why is this relevant to you? One of the three main parts of Soul Fire Farm’s mission is to reconnect black and native people to the land, thus rewriting the history of them being stolen from it. As people who now call New York home, the land we live on is Onondaga land. Being aware of and offering our support to the movement to reaffirm this historic Two Row Wampum Treaty of friendship and environmental stewardship is a step towards healing and revolutionizing our relationship to each other and the land we all now call home.

Recipe : Sade

To say that everyone will be getting a lot of kale this week, I think, would be an understatement. Everyone will be getting so much kale that I am sure you will not know what to do with it all. With this in mind, this week’s recipe will be for a kale salad and garlic dressing.



1 bunch of kale (15 medium to large leaves)

1/8 cup of olive oil

½ a lemon, juiced



9 Tbsp. olive oil

3 Tbsp. lemon juice

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 ½ tsp finely grated lemon zest

1 ½ tsp. salt

¾ tsp. pepper

¾ tsp dry mustard


  1. Thoroughly wash kale and cut into thin slices (be sure to discard the stalks)

  2. Put sliced kale into an appropriately sized mixing bowl and add 1/8 cup of olive oil, the juice of half a lemon, and a little salt. Massage ingredients together until kale begins to wilt

  3. In a separate bowl combine the remaining ingredients and whisk together until mixed. Add more salt, pepper, olive oil, etcetera to taste.

Farm News : Sade
 sade, we'll miss you!

This week Jonah, Leah, and family went on vacation in New Hampshire; and this week I am going back home to Maryland. Rather than talk about the highs and lows of the past week, I am going to talk about the past 10.

I applied to work at Soul Fire as a intern on a whim the day before the deadline. Prior to coming here, I knew absolutely nothing about farming. I have a few memories of picking coffee and bananas on my grandfather’s farm in the mountains Jamaica and some other memories of being pooped on by his baby chickens—but that was the extent of my farming experience.

Needless to say, before I came here I didn’t know jack about what I was getting myself into. The first 2, maybe 3 weeks that I was here it rained everyday. Every. Day. I do not own rain pants, so from the waist down each layer of my clothing (including undergarments) became soaked. It got to the point that my goal each day during morning check-in was simply to keep my underwear dry.

Fast forward to present day and a lot of things have changed. Instead of yearning for dry underwear, I instead wish for a mesh-covered hat to keep the gnats and flies out of my face. Some of the things I have learned include:

  • Not properly washing ones hands after washing eggs can have disastrous consequences

  • How to distract aggressive chickens

  • Pest-management on natural/organic farms is so tedious (and icky)

Of course, there are more practical and personal development-related things as well like:

  • Worms are not that bad (but spiders still are)

  • Purple plants are probably nitrogen deficient

  • How to grow my own food

I applied to work at Soul Fire to build character and to become more comfortable outside of my element. I also wanted to learn about something I love oh so much: food. I have accomplished both of these goals, and many, many more. In the end, coming to Grafton has had more significance in my journey than I originally intended. It is funny how without even trying, things always seem to work out and somehow fit together within the larger plan of one’s life.

this is what happens when the farmers leave town copy

  • Please RETURN YOUR BOXES, JARS, BAGS and clean egg cartons.  You can leave them where you get your share and we will retrieve them each week.
  • 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 wash 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.
  • We are still looking for a delivery van.  If you have any leads on something efficient, in decent shape, and affordable, please let us know!
  • 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.
  • Pasture raised poultry for mid summer and fall is available for pre-sale here.
  • Remember that you are always welcome to visit socially and/or to volunteer. Give a call to schedule a time.
  • All of our newsletters are archived on our website, along with lots more, including educational resources and recipes.

With love, and so much kale…

Capers, Alicia and Sade