come to the Food Day 100 Mile Meal

 just a reminder, before you plan your meal for tonight, consider:

 

It’s Food Day! (check out http://www.foodday.org/ )

CMU’s Campus Grow is hosting this great event tonight!

I’ll be there, talking some, eating some, visiting with all of you…

a great way to eat well!

Chris Swier

CSA Veggie Harvest # 18 : Oct 21 & 23, 2014

 

a few reminders

if you haven’t, please return your crates

please complete your CSA Survey

you can still Stock Up & Eat Well

tonight: Food Day 100 Mile Meal!

speak out, even if your voice shakes

and, my greatest challenge growing food in 2014

 

 

 

sample full share Tuesday Oct 21, 2014

full share Oct 21 2014

 

in your crate

garlic

brussels sprouts

acorn and/or sweet dumpling winter squash

green onion

peppers (see recipe/usage below)

tomatoes

salad mix

Share Crate: broccoli or Happy Rich, peppers, parsley, tomatoes

share crates Tuesday Oct 21 2014

re-introducing Indigo Rose tomatoes, in your crate this week!

indigo rose tomatoes Harvest # 18 2014

According to Johnny’s Selected Seeds:

“Darkest tomato bred so far, exceptionally high in anthocyanins.

Anthocyanins are powerful anti-oxidants. In the early stages of fruit development, Indigo Rose develops a dark purple pigment in its skin where exposed to direct sunlight. Green when unripe, purple-red when ripe, the 1-2 oz., cocktail-sized tomatoes have good flavor with ‘plummy’ overtones. Developed by Jim Myers at Oregon State University using traditional plant breeding techniques. Moderately vigorous. Compact indeterminate. Organically grown.”

In early September I’d written, “I’m not 100% decided on growing this tomato again. It’s taste is good, look is exceptional, growing it has been somewhat difficult though. Not a sound producer for us this season. We will likely grow it at least once more (try, try again!), see if another year’s weather might be better??”

Now, in late October, I’d say, “you know, the taste was really good! Very fruity.” One of our CSA people had commented that he really liked it, thought it was not particularly tomato-like in taste though, but plummy.

The flavor is most definitely plum-like. Super juicy, really a refreshing flavor. Even the skins are a bit plum-like. They sort of stick to the tomato, almost peel off as you bite into it. Chewy skins.

But, back to Johnny’s write-up, “Moderately vigorous. Compact indeterminate.” For us, this season, these were very squat plants. Very compact. Definitely not vigorous throughout the growing season. They produced a bulk load of tomatoes very late, many almost at once (not spread out through the season). The growing of these tomatoes, and their growth habit, leaves me wondering:

 

should we grow them again?

 

so, I ask you, should we?

 

peppers: recipes/usage

 

plenty'o'peppers harvest #18 , Oct 2014

Many of these are very recognizable, though maybe not quite exactly what you see in the supermarket? Partly because Our CSA is a bit like having your own garden! Through the years we’ve found proven performers – they work well in our gardens at our place. Grow ‘em, eat ‘em up, enjoy ‘em.

The early peppers are green, across the board. A garden-fresh green pepper is truly something special. (these are not store-bought!) I truly feel that a garden fresh pepper, even green, is something really special. The taste is sooo superior to anything you’d find sitting on a super market shelf. There’s a crispness, a juiciness, a snap unlike the store bought. They embody the warmth of summer, with a great, crunchy, juiciness. No they’re not exactly sweet like a colored pepper, but they’ll become that way.

Amongst others, we grow a Lipstick : always small to medium in size, sweet, cone-shaped, will turn red later in season. Also an Anaheim: traditional, semi-flatttend, long roasting, chili relleno, stir fry, or anywhere you’d enjoy a pepper. Very versatile.

We have had some reds this season, though I don’t have many pictures of reds from this year, you’d know ‘em when you see ‘em. Red.

We usually thin out green peppers through the season, leaving fewer to redden. Our growing season allows reds, but some years it’s more of a challenge to redden than others. The cool summer this season challenged mature ripening into the many colors other than green. We did have red, and many green.

This being our last week of CSA harvests, and given that the weather does not seem to be heading into summer, we simply clear-cut what remained of peppers, and passed them onto you. Many green with no hope of reddening. Others beautifully red and gorgeous.

 

I did have a fair amount of questions on the curbside regarding the Anaheims.

here are a few photos of Anaheims from our farm

lookie them anaheim peppers!

anaheim pepper on the plant

shades of anaheim peppers

from The Cook’s Thesaurus:

Anaheim chile = California green chile = long green pepper = chile verde [CHEE-lay VER-day]         These large, mild chiles are perfect for chiles rellenos.  Mexican cooks also like to dice or purée them, and then add them to sauces, soups, and casseroles. They have a tough skin, but it peels off easily if you first char the chiles over a flame and then steam them in a paper bag for several minutes.  Anaheims are available year-round, but they’re best in the summer.   When mature and red, an Anaheim is called a chile colorado = California red chile.”  

 

We’ve found these peppers to be very mild… and only slightly warm if you venture into the seeds. We use them interchangeably with any other green pepper. Though, when charred and stuffed, ohhh my, so worth the effort! Really a keeper and something special when stuffed.

 

from Allrecipes.com :

many

Anaheim Pepper Recipes

Should we grow Indigo Rose again? (taste testing)

 

re-introducing Indigo Rose tomatoes, in your crate this week!

indigo rose tomatoes Harvest # 18 2014

According to Johnny’s Selected Seeds:

“Darkest tomato bred so far, exceptionally high in anthocyanins.

Anthocyanins are powerful anti-oxidants. In the early stages of fruit development, Indigo Rose develops a dark purple pigment in its skin where exposed to direct sunlight. Green when unripe, purple-red when ripe, the 1-2 oz., cocktail-sized tomatoes have good flavor with ‘plummy’ overtones. Developed by Jim Myers at Oregon State University using traditional plant breeding techniques. Moderately vigorous. Compact indeterminate. Organically grown.”

In early September I’d written, “I’m not 100% decided on growing this tomato again. It’s taste is good, look is exceptional, growing it has been somewhat difficult though. Not a sound producer for us this season. We will likely grow it at least once more (try, try again!), see if another year’s weather might be better??”

Now, in late October, I’d say, “you know, the taste was really good! Very fruity.” One of our CSA people had commented that he really liked it, thought it was not particularly tomato-like in taste though, but plummy.

The flavor is most definitely plum-like. Super juicy, really a refreshing flavor. Even the skins are a bit plum-like. They sort of stick to the tomato, almost peel off as you bite into it. Chewy skins.

But, back to Johnny’s write-up, “Moderately vigorous. Compact indeterminate.” For us, this season, these were very squat plants. Very compact. Definitely not vigorous throughout the growing season. They produced a bulk load of tomatoes very late, many almost at once (not spread out through the season). The growing of these tomatoes, and their growth habit, leaves me wondering:

should we grow them again?

 

so, I ask you, should we?

Food Day 100 Mile Meal

producer - plants

To those of you in Mt. Pleasant, especially, and any surrounding areas (ohhhh, let’s say within 100 miles!?) : Thought you might be interested.

 

I’ll be there, talking some, chomping some great foods too.

 

hope to see you! Thanks to Campus Grow!


eat well,

 

Chris Swier

to see a proper Facebook event,

click Food Day 100 Mile Meal

speak out, even if your voice shakes

 

 

speak out,

even if your voice shakes.

 

Many years back I was involved in many large, public forums throughout the state. This was through my efforts with Michigan Citizens for Water Conservation. These were informational meetings to all sorts of civic and environmental groups. Also public hearings, on the record, with many Government officials, and large crowds. Even media.

 

The combination of speaking out and being heard publicly (even recorded!) is still both invigorating and nerve-racking.

 

“Stand before the people you fear and speak your mind — even if your voice shakes”

accredited to Maggie Kuhn, an American activist.

Well, here’s my latest speaking out. With shaky voice. It’s got to do with my greatest challenge growing food in 2014. Check it out.

 

And, here’s your chance to speak out, not with shaky voice (but, of course, even if your voice shakes, speak out!). It’s your 2014 Veggie CSA Evaluation, Survey, and Feedback.

 

speak out,

even if your voice shakes.

 

 

let’s be honest,

sometimes it’s easier to just curl up,

cover our eyes,

and NOT do it!

eyes wide shut - our scaredy cat

A few less years ago I was browsing many on-line blogs and websites, looking for some suitable examples for our soon-to-be on-line presence. A friend in upstate NY suggested checking out Sugar Mountain Farm online. Okay. I checked it out. I like what Walter Jeffries is doing online (and on farm).

 

I had some questions for him. I wrote to him directly by email (not via his blog). He gave me some great pointers. Amongst them were: “write to me via my blog, publicly, so all can benefit from your questions & answers.” Oh. It made sense. It makes sense. I’m just not usually quite that public of a person…. I mean we are talking the

 

world wide web!

 

anybody,

anytime,

online

could see it!

 

Still to this day, honestly, that seems more public than I might like, frankly.

 

I’ve had to talk myself down from the public-exhibition-cliff-side.

 

The internet is a tool. For me. For you.

 

It’s a great way to streamline communications. Efficiently.

 

As Walter Jeffries told me, www communications, open and visible to all, also can be a learning opportunity. In Our CSA Adventure, and elsewhere online, I’ve expressed how we tend towards the High Transparency level of the spectrum. As much as the medium (online) may not be my personal favorite, I know it’s a tool for many, many others too. If we can help and be a part of that, we’ll try.

 

In Our CSA Adventure I wrote, “Communication is essential in this process, especially to make it successfully satisfying. We all benefit from communication within our wider CSA community. Talk to us and others, and talk with us and others. We have telephone, email, the blog, facebook, the curbside. This is part of building and sustaining our locale, our culture, our health, and our lives! This sounds grandiose because it is!”

 

this season I’ve had a fantastic amount of mis-spellings

I didn’t know you could spell check an email!

boquet is spelled bouquet for example

how many years have I spelled bouquet wrong?

is that why it’s always been underlined in red??

 

social media has been the utmost of challenges

Walter tried to teach me some social graces of social media

I’m still largely lost

 

This season I suffered an embarrasment socially, sort of. My heart sank some. Some people don’t really have patience nor see humor in my lack of social graces on social media. Now I think it’s kind of funny. My family sees it as a great story to tell. Oh well. Check out my faux paux

 

speak out,

even if your voice shakes.

 

Okay.

 

brussels sprouts

brussels sprouts - on the stalk yet! 2014

thanks to Victoria for this excellent recipe! Enjoy!

Roasted Brussels Sprout Salad-

Cooking from the Heart, by John Besch

 

1 ½ pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved

Olive Oil

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

2 cloves garlic, sliced

2 tablespoons of sherry/wine vinegar

2 tablespoons sesame oil

2 tablespoons hazelnut oil

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. On a baking pan, toss the Brussels with a generous amount of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for about 20 minutes, until the sprouts are golden brown and tender, tossing occasionally.

Transfer to a large bowl and, while the sprouts are still hot, add the garlic, vinegar, and oils. Toss, sprinkle with more salt and pepper, and serve.

-Submitted by Victoria Sladek (Since I did not have sesame or hazelnut oil, I substituted vegetable oil and it still turned out delicious!)

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

some other recipe/usage ideas for those brussels sprouts

 

These are many Dad’s favorites – Brussels Sprouts! A whole cabbage in one bite – Yum!

 

“Some crops love frost. Your Brussels Sprouts, cabbage, and kale have gone through some hard frosts in the last couple weeks. This should sweeten them up nicely. The sweet quality induced by frost is seldom experienced in grocery store brassicas (cole crops), because they are raised mostly along the West Coast where the temperatures do not get that cold.” (Farmer John’s Cookbook. 2006. John Peterson and Angelic Organics).

 

Brussels Sprouts

  • boil or steam 5-8 minutes. Be careful not to overcook. Eat tender, not mushy.
  • toss sprouts in olive oil, lemon juice, and a dash of salt and pepper, or top with a pat of butter.
  • Marinate cooked sprouts overnight in your favorite dressing for use in salads.
  • toss sprouts into hearty soups and stews.
  • try a puree of Brussels Sprout soup with snippets of fresh herbs and sauteed onion. Leave a few sprouts whole to float in the soup.

Sesame Garlic Brussels Sprouts :

MACSAC, From Asparagus to Zucchini. 2004.

1/8 cup soy sauce

1 1/2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil

1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

3/4 teaspoons minced garlic

3/4 pounds (wait for next weeks batch too) Brussels Sprouts, trimmed and halved

2-3 tablespoons peanut or canola oil

Combine soy sauce, sesame oil, crushed pepper, garlic, and 3 tablespoons water in a large bowl. Blanch the Brussels Sprouts in boiling water until partially tender, 3-4 minutes. Drain well. Heat wok or a large, heavy skillet over high flame until the air looks hazy over the pan, 3-4 minutes. Add a small amount of the peanut oil, swirl the pan to coat the surface, and add about a third of the sprouts. Stir fry until bright green and crisp tender. Drain on paper towels. Stir-fry the remaining sprouts similiarly, in batches. Add stir-fried Brussel Sprouts to soy sauce mixture and toss well. Serve immediately or allow Brussels Sprouts to marinate one or more hours before serving. Makes 3 servings.

Our Final CSA Veggie Harvest is Next Week (Oct 21 & Oct 23)

fall is here

view from back door step 10/16/14

our final CSA pick-ups:

 

Tuesday October 21

&

Thursday October 23

 

please return all crates,

please bag all produce this week,

and please complete your CSA Survey

take a look at

my greatest challenge this season

 

thank you!

 

1 quart pure honey, $15.00 ; Oct 2014

honey for sale to you

 

 

cured garlic - ready for you!

 

garlic and

winter squash

for sale to you

 

sweet dumpling winter squash Turk's turban winter squash Oct 2014 sweet dumpling winter squash - single serving- Oct 2012 buttercup & acorn winter squash spaghetti winter squash

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