Week 5: June 22 – 28, 2014

Tantre Farm CSA Newsletter
WEEK 5
June 22-28, 2014

If needed, please contact Richard Andres & Deb Lentz at 2510 Hayes Rd. Chelsea, MI 48118 e-mail: tantrefarm@hotmail.com phone: 734-475-4323 website: www.tantrefarm.com

In our newsletter, we try to give you an accurate listing of the produce in your box; however, since the newsletter is published before the harvest, we may sometimes substitute some vegetables for others. The information provided here is also published each week on our website.

We also try to keep the formatted newsletter to a 2-page maximum, which means that we won’t list all the share items’ descriptions every week, but refer you to previous newsletters for information on items that have already appeared in your shares.

**Also, if you’re having trouble identifying any unfamiliar produce, please look for “Veggie ID” with additional information on our website under CSA INFO or under RECIPES.

THIS WEEK’S SHARE

GARLIC SCAPES: This popular and highly delectable flower top of a garlic plant has a slender green stem with a slight bulge at the bottom (resemble chives, except for the bulge and often curled); tender and milder in flavor than mature garlic, but can be substituted for garlic cloves in recipes. See Week 3 newsletter for usage and storage information.

FRESH HERBS: This is the last of the Cilantro right now for awhile, so everyone will receive a bunch in your box. Cilantro are the flat, delicate, lacy-edged leaves and stems of the coriander plant, which look a lot like flat-leaf parsley. They have a slightly citrus fragrance, which go well with highly spiced foods. In general, store herbs upright with cut stems in 1 or 2 inches of water and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks or wrap in slightly dampened cloth and store in refrigerator. In addition you may also choose 1 out the following 4 herbs this week:
Black-stemmed Peppermint–forest green leaves with deep purple veins and stems, purple flowers; leaves are good as a hot or iced tea; adds a delicious flavor when minced and added to cooked peas, carrots, potatoes, salads, and fresh strawberries.
Dill– feathery green leaves that go well with fish, potatoes, beets, carrots, and yogurt sauces; considered a good luck symbol by early Romans. Dill partners nicely with Cucumbers this week!
Oregano–member of the mint family and is similar to marjoram, but not as sweet and more pungent flavor and aroma; good in soups and tomato-based dishes.
Rosemary—pine needle-like leaves used with potatoes, bread doughs, risottos, mixed vegetables, and meat dishes, especially lamb, as well as in sweet dishes such as lemonade, creams, custards, and syrups; very strongly flavored, so use sparingly, finely chopped, or remove from dish after cooking; considered a memory stimulant and medicinally used for headaches, indigestion, and depression.

KALE: You will receive Lacinato Kale (dark green, noncurled, blistered leaves, but heavily savoyed). See Week 3 newsletter for usage and storage information.

BABY LETTUCE MIX (Wildfire): a beautiful bag of dark reds and vibrant greens including Green and Red Oakleaf, Green and Red Romaine, and Redleaf lettuces. Your lettuce has been rinsed once, but probably needs more washing.
See Week 2 newsletter for usage and storage information.

HEAD LETTUCE: You will receive 1 head of Green Leaf or Red Leaf in your box. See Week 2 newsletter for usage and storage information.

SUMMER ONIONS (Red or White): slightly larger bulbs (“baby bulb onions”) than green onions, but both bulb and leaves are still edible; can be prepared like cippolini onions.
How to use: can be grilled or roasted whole as a vegetable or chopped in salads, soups, & other dishes for flavor
How to store: refrigerate in damp towel/plastic bag for 2 to 7 days.

SHELLING or SNAP PEAS: You may receive Shelling Peas (easy to shell with delicious flavor for fresh eating and freezing) or Sugar Snap Peas (“round” pod of edible-pod pea). Chew on the pod to test if they are edible pods or tough-skinned shelling pea. See Week 4 newsletter for usage and storage information.

POTATOES: All of you will receive a pint of Rose Finn Apple Fingerling (rare and beautiful rose-colored fingerling with moderately dry, yellow flesh; delicious baked, boiled or roasted). You will also receive one quart of Dakota Red (red potato with white flesh that is good for baking, boiling, or frying) or Désirée (a red-skinned potato originally bred in the Netherlands with yellow flesh; very versatile with a waxy, firm texture for cooking from roasting to mashing and salads). See Week 1 newsletter for usage and storage information.

SPINACH: You will receive a bag and a bunch of this crisp, dark green leaf– best eaten raw or with minimal cooking to obtain the beneficial chlorophyll, as well as vitamins A & C; delicious flavor when juiced. It can also be blanched and frozen.
–How to freeze: Since you will be receiving large amounts of spinach due to this cool, rainy weather that we’ve been having, we would like to suggest freezing it. Blanch leaves for 1-2 minutes, rinse in cold water, drain well, and pack into containers. Also, spinach can be pureed after cooking, frozen in freezer bags, and used in many recipes.
–See Week 1 newsletter for usage and storage information.

STRAWBERRIES: You will receive 1 pint this week of this member of the rose family; red, conical fruit with tiny white flowers. See Week 3 newsletter for usage and storage information.

WHITE HAKUREI TURNIPS and GREENS: A white salad turnip with round, smooth roots that have a sweet, fruity flavor with a crisp, tender texture. Use the greens as well, sautéed or braised. See Week 2 newsletter for usage and storage information.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

1. U-PICK AT THE FARM starting this week: You may come on Farm Distribution Days on Wednesdays and Fridays, but please schedule an appointment for u-pick on any other day. No u-pick available on Sat. mornings, since we are at two Farmers Markets, but starting after 2 PM we’ll be back, and we should be around most Sundays as well.
**Strawberries–$4/qt. for members and $6/qt. for nonmembers. You can pick into our quart baskets to measure them, but to take them home, please bring your own containers or transfer them into donated berry containers at the Distribution Shed.

2. “LULU” COOKING CLASS ON June 25: We have filled up spaces for our cooking class on Wed. We look forward to letting you know how everything turns out. More information will be coming today for those participating. It sounds delectable!

3. WEEDING VOLUNTEERS NEEDED: There are always a generous amount of weeds on the farm, especially with all this rain. If you are interested in helping out–even if it’s just for 10 or 15 minutes before you pick up your box at the farm, come join us. Please contact us any day of the week or evenings until dark. We could really use the help with the weeds right now. Thanks for volunteering!

4. VACATIONS or OUT OF TOWN: Please remember to contact us at least by Sunday to make changes in pick up days or locations, especially with the 4th of July vacations coming up. Also keep in mind that changes need to be made within the same week (Sun.-Sat.), not into the next week of distribution.

5. PICK UP TIMES & LOCATIONS REMINDER:
Ann Arbor Farmers’ Market (Wed.)–7 A.M. to 12 P.M.
Farm (Wed.)–10 A.M. to 7 P.M.
Washtenaw Food Hub (Wed.) –6 P.M. to 8 P.M.
Farm (Fri.)–2 P.M. to 7 P.M.
Community High School (Sat.) –7 A.M. to 12 P.M.
Washtenaw Food Hub (Sat.)—10 A.M. to 12 P.M.
Chelsea Farmers’ Market (Sat.)–8 A.M. to 12 P.M.

REAWAKENING TOTEMIC AWARENESS
(by Shaun Schoonover–Tantré Farm Crew)

Consider for a moment that all life has the capacity for some degree of awareness, and all are driven by a will to life and have the means to defend this, and as such, nothing offers itself willingly. Does this alter your view of any of the foods at your table? The notion that we can at once revere and honor animals as they take a place on our plates may, for some folks, rustle up a cognitive dissonance that threatens to blow the mind in two. Yet, embracing the death within our food is the very means of honoring the life that feeds us, as living inevitably takes life, directly and on the periphery, and the severity of this truth is not broken by choosing one dietary road over the other. The fire that animates our individual lives is shared through eating — “mutual insparkedness” as the Mayan say. Life feasts and is feasted upon. There is no either-or, only this and that. Such paradoxes, the tension between apparent opposites, are woven into Life. It is that pushing and pulling that creates our reality. It appears our kind once held a deep awareness of this, having not yet elevated themselves above their earthly origins, allowing them to gracefully approach Life on its terms, neither romanticizing nor demonizing the circumstances of their existence, and this included the reality that they had to kill in order to eat. Yet, their thoughtfulness and respect in light of this is evident in what their cultures left behind. Though we can merely speculate on the meaning and purpose of the ancient artwork that decorates the caves of modern Europe, the artists clearly admired their four-legged muses. They inevitably hunted the subject of their admiration as well, though we can presume that they ate with gratitude and accepted this food as the gift that it is. The modern world has largely failed on this last count, viewing the life that feeds us as mere commodity, an entitlement, which in turn has sparked the sentimentalist notion that death can be completely severed from life and one can eat without the former.

“The knowledge that every animal, plant, [and] person … is indebted to the fruit of everything else is an adult knowledge. To get out of debt means you don’t want to be a part of life, and you don’t want to grow into an adult,” is the elder wisdom quoted by Martín Prechtel in his book Long Life, Honey in the Heart. Only in a culture built on a foundation of forgetting, isolated from its beginnings and split into dualities could such black and white thinking that now exists arise, content in its childishness, as it were. It is ill-acknowledged that we are all existing in the same sacred space, that we all share the general essence of Life, and that while individual sparks may extinguish, the fire continues burning. Any living thing that is free to indulge in the wide, wild spaces of its full character, without restraints, does not die in vain, and when we deepen, as well as broaden, our view, we see that there are no true endings, only transitions. One form moves into another: the sun into vegetation, vegetation into beasts, beasts into us, and, inevitably, us into soil. Revolving existence, life lived in multitudes through unbroken change and transformation. What could be more beautiful?

RECIPES

HERB BLENDER DRINK
Wash and remove leaves from 1 bunch of peppermint or other herb. Blend leaves in blender with 6-8 ice cubes and about 2 to 4 quarts of water. Drizzle sweetener (sugar, honey, maple syrup) to taste. Strain through a sieve into a pitcher. Add some whole ice cubes to a glass. Very refreshing! We HIGHLY recommend it!

FRESH MAYONNAISE (Seed Savers 1996 Calendar)
1 fresh egg
1 Tbs. Dijon mustard
2 Tbs. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 – 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/2 c. olive oil
1/2 c. salad oil (e.g. corn or sunflower)
1/2 c. fresh cilantro leaves

Blend first 5 ingredients in blender or food processor. With motor running, slowly add the oils in a steady stream. Add herb leaves and blend until incorporated into the mayonnaise. Makes about 1 1/2 cups.

SPRING GARDEN SOUP (Victory Garden Cookbook)
5-6 radishes
1 lb. turnips
2 Tbs. butter
4-6 green onions, chopped
1 qt. vegetable or chicken broth
turnip greens (optional)
1 cup shelled peas or snap pea pods
salt & freshly ground pepper
chopped fresh herbs (optional)

Wash and slice radishes paper-thin. Blanch them in boiling water 30 seconds; drain, rinse with cold water and drain again; set aside. Dice turnips. Melt butter in 6-qt. saucepan, add turnips and cook slowly, turning often, to wilt them slightly without browning. Add green onions and cook 2-3 minutes. Add broth, bring to simmer and cook until turnips are barely tender, 5-6 minutes. (Turnip greens can also be added to the broth if desired.) Add peas and cook 1-2 minutes. Stir in blanched radish slices; season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir in fresh herbs if desired. Makes 4-6 servings.