Winter share produce list – Nov 14, 2018

WINTER SHARE MEMBERS! This week you will be getting spaghetti squash, sweet potatoes, leeks, Yukon Gold potatoes, rutabaga, carrots, parsnips, yellow onions, red onions, green cabbage, garlic, tomatoes and yellow popcorn. BONUS: You’ll also find a bag of mixed greens in your share – turnip greens and lettuce. Happy cooking!

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Winter Share Newsletter – Nov 1, 2018

Dear Winter Members,

This week you are getting spaghetti squash, Delicata and Sweet Dumpling squash, Yukon Gold potatoes, leeks, daikon radish, yellow onions, red beets, carrots, red cabbage, garlic, bell peppers, anaheim peppers, tomatoes, black beans and a bag of kale.

Through experimentation and experience (Jerry always tells me he has yesterdays’ experience) he plans on giving you the majority of the sweet potatoes, winter squash and lettuce by the end of December. He is afraid it will not store into January or February. So please enjoy while we have it! And if we can keep any of it into the later months, we will try. But storing produce the ‘a la natural way’ does not allow for flexibility. We do not spray growth prohibitores, waxes or other chemicals on our produce while it is in storage. Therefore, it will start to get soft, break down and go bad. Sorting will be a huge part of our job in the coming months. If you need to make any changes to your share, please notify me Thursday the week before distribution.

Apples: Ela Family Farms is offering us a mixed of Fuji, Granny Smith and Breaburn apples by the 20 pound box for $30.00. They will be delivered on November 14th. Then on December 12th you will have the option to get a 20 pound box of Fuji apples. You can order for one or both deliveries; please be specific about how many boxes you want and if you want them both times! Order by Nov. 5th.

There are eight deliveries over a four month period. The delivery schedule for the first half of winter is as follows: November 1st, November 14th, November 28th and December 12th. We will then take a month off and return delivering produce for the second half of winter as follows: January 9th, January 23rd, February 6th and February 20th.

December 12th is unique in the fact that you will be getting two bags of produce to get you through the month we are off.

Shares Available! Let friends, neighbors and co-workers know we still have shares available; discounted for missed week.

Distribution Center (DC) Info: Keep information about your DC either in your phone or by your home phone. Please call them if there is a problem getting to the DC location during normal hours or you need to make arrangements to hold your produce or pick up another day. If you need to cancel your share completely or for the week, call me at the above number. Please do not send me an email!!!

Payment Schedule: For those of you who chose to make monthly payments; please make sure your payments are received by the 15th of each month. Those of you who chose to make payments in thirds; your second payment is due November 15th.

Newsletter/Bags: We use these bags over and over so it is important you return them every week. Newsletters will not go out with every delivery, not much to say. Besides, I send out monthly newsletters to the entire membership. A list of produce will be on the blog each time, so check it out!

Newsletter – October 9, 2018

Dear Friends of the Farm;

This is week 18 out of an 18 week season. You should get Yukon Gold Potatoes, yellow cooking onions, turnips, garlic, bell peppers, Canario peppers, jalapeno peppers, green tomatoes, Black Beauty tomatoes, red popcorn and celery.

The green and black tomatoes will continue to ripen on your counter, but it may take up to a week or two depending on how warm your home is (considering the current cold temps outside). Green tomatoes are excellent fried. Slice then cover with flour; dip into a beaten egg then place into a second mixture of ½ flour & ½ cornmeal. Now sprinkle with salt, pepper and paprika (can add to flour/ cornmeal mixture) and fry until golden brown. Eat as hors d’oeuvres or in a BLT.

Our celery is pretty potent; you may not like eating this raw. But it is fantastic in soups, stews and stir-fry’s. Anything you put this into, you are going to know there is celery in it! The leaves are wonderful dried and kept for later use during the winter. I simply wash any sand off then place on a paper plate and air dry until crisp, crumble & store in a jar.

2018 Review: May and June are our biggest months for planting new crops; both by seed and by transplant. They were also two of the hottest months Colorado has seen…possibly record breakers! Keeping things watered and alive was difficult. We had record breaking weather through the middle of July with many days/weeks hitting 100 degrees or more. It was difficult to germinate seeded crops and is the reason you did not get any green beans and only a few weeks of corn this summer. It is also the reason muskmelon was picked for the first time in our lives at the end of June! Most of our summer crops came on four weeks earlier than crops we used to pick in the 1990’s. Then we had a small lull in production in September because it cooled off so much in August and delayed the ripening process. But of course, it warmed right back up in September and we had a wonderful ending to the season with fresh, wonderfully sweet, corn!

Fundraiser update: We are nearing the end of our fundraiser through Gofundme. We will keep this open through the end of the month. All donations of $100-$149 will automatically be entered into the drawing for a free Winter Share. (Just as a reminder, Winter Distribution begins Nov. 1st and we still have shares available!) Donations of $150 or more will also be entered to win a free Summer Share for 2019! We will draw our winners for the Winter Share on the 21st and the Summer Share on the 28th. Please remember, any amount helps and we are so grateful for your support. If every member were to donate just $21, we would meet and/or exceed our goal of $14,000. Visit our Gofundme page to learn more.

The first 25 members who donated to the Gofundme account will receive a hat or t-shirt this week through the Distribution Center. Thank you again for all your help in raising funds for the no-till planter!

Goodbye and thank you! Feeding people is our passion. We are committed to providing the best tasting organic produce you have ever eaten. We have fed thousands of people and donated thousands of pounds of produce to people & communities around Northern Colorado throughout the years. We have never done anything so important or made us as happy. Thank you for being a part of this! We love you all and appreciate your support more than ever! We cannot exist without our members; who happen to be the most passionate people about supporting local farming and eating organic produce. We are looking forward to being your farmers in 2019. Have a wonderful, restful winter and think of us when you pull out vegetables from the freezer.

Jerry, Jacquie, Kyle and Crew

Newsletter – October 2, 2018

Dear Farm Members,

This is week 17 of an 18 week season. You should get Yukon Gold Potatoes, yellow cooking onions, red beets, daikon radish, turnips, squash or cucumber, bell & anaheim peppers, tomatoes and possibly melon.

Fruit, Honey & Oil: This is your last delivery of all three of these items. You will be getting Empire apples as well as Bartlett pears from First Fruit. I hope you have enjoyed everything; it was a pleasure working with Rancho Durazno, Ela Family Farms and First Fruit as well as Lazy Bee Ranch and Healthy Harvest.

Fundraiser: The fundraiser continues to be a huge success with donations almost daily! The GoFundMe account has accumulated $5900. The tour, dinner and two raffles raised another $4450. Then add the donations coming directly to the farm making a total of another $1300 equaling a smashing grand total of $11,650!!! This is an incredible show of support from the most amazing members a CSA could possibly have! You are the most wonderful people imaginable and we thank you from the very bottom of our loving hearts. Kyle is astounded and appreciates this enormous generosity! He cannot wait to share with you this new piece of equipment and continually show updated pictures (on Facebook and Twitter) of the experimental area of the farm we have set aside for this project & what it (hopefully) will do for us.

Many requests were made for the recipe from the Green Chili soup we ate…so here it is!

Sopa de Chili Verde

1 pound pork shoulder
1 pound green tomatoes
1/2 tsp coriander seed
1 cup organic wheat flour
1/2 pound of your favorite green chili peppers
1 tbsp. molasses
1 tbsp. cumin
1/2 pound onion
1/4 cup honeydew melon (optional)
1/2 tbsp. salt
4 large cloves garlic
1 tsp pepper
1/2 cup roughly chopped cilantro
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tsp. mustard seed

Pork:

Mix flour, salt, pepper and cumin. Dredge meat in flour mixture. Heat a skillet to medium high, add olive oil. Once there is very light smoke coming from the skillet, add pork and brown on all sides. Set oven to 200 degrees. Place pork in a roasting pan covered in foil and slow roast overnight. Remove and let cool. Pull apart pork into bite size pieces and add to the chili verde sauce. Heat and serve or allow to slow cook for up to 4 more hours.

Sauce:

Peel and coarsely chop onion. Peel garlic. Lightly coat chilies, tomatoes, onions and garlic with olive oil and place on a cookie sheet. Roast in the oven @ 375 degrees until the chilies blister (about 1/2 hour). Remove from oven and let cool. Once cooled, blend mixture and add cilantro, molasses and honeydew while mixing. If it will not all fit into one blender batch, pour it into a mixing bowl or stew pot and mix batches together.

You can also cut the pork into pieces and brown and then add it directly to the chili verde and let it stew for several hours over low heat on the stove top if time is an issue, however I strongly recommend slow roasting for larger shoulder roasts.

This recipe was greatly reduced to a family size. Some adjustments may be needed after cooking the first time to accommodate your preferences!

Newsletter – September 25, 2018

Dear Friends,

This is week 16 of an 18 week season. You should get Yukon Gold potatoes, red onions, carrots, cucumbers, squash, cauliflower or broccoli, bell peppers and honeydew. Wednesday and Thursday are getting turnips and Tuesday and Thursday are getting corn.

Honey, Fruit and Oil: Your last delivery of fruit and honey will be the first week of October.

Winter Share: We have filled 90 out of 150 shares for winter. If you are considering getting a share, let us know so we can hold it for you. We will be opening the remaining shares to the public the first week of October and then they tend to go fast!

Farm to Table Fundraiser: Man-Oh-Man!! This was the event of the year! I wish everyone could have experienced this. Look for pictures on Facebook and the blog…you will want to see this!

The evening started out with Kyle leading a tour of the equipment we have and how the no-till planter will impact the farm. They then got on a hayride to take a look at the first experimental field already planted into rye grass and a quick tour of the rest of the farm.

We proceeded to a beautifully arranged front yard with a table laden with gorgeous hors d’oeuvres. The dinner bell rang and Scott & Carly were introduced and the meal was explained. Several of the items being served are from recipes that have been handed down through generations, such as my Swedish Meatballs, Armandina’s (farm worker) Chili Rellenos and Sam’s Russian Apple Walnut Cake. We wanted everyone to have a connection to the farm, the food and the people that created it all. Course after course of amazing flavors came out of my kitchen (with the help of several of Scott’s friends from all over the US) to artfully amaze our taste buds!

In between courses was a raffle for products we picked up at the different farmer’s markets as well as canned goods processed by my family. The big winner of the night was when Denise Burk’s name was drawn for a free Summer Share! As a thank you gift, everyone went home with red popcorn and a Monroe farm hat.

A very special thank you to everyone who helped in the kitchen; from the servers to the cooks: Scott & Carly, Abby, Dan and Jordan, Betty and Howard~ (Sam’s parents), Kym, Sam, Anna, Mike and Dave. All of you are very special people and we thank you so very much for your time, effort and your love of us and the farm. You Are The Greatest!!!

Grilled Veggie Pasta Salad

½ pound daikon radish, julienne cut
3 Tbsp Healthy Harvest olive oil
1 red pepper, cut ½ inch lengths
2 Tbsp of your favorite balsamic vinegar
1 squash, quartered, then cut lengthwise ½ inch wide
Whole grain penne pasta
1 onion, cut in half then cut in ¼ inch slices
any of your favorite herbs ~ can go Italian!

Place all the veggies into a plastic bag with 1 Tbsp olive oil (can add more if needed) and toss. Place in a grilling pan and grill over medium-high heat for 10 minutes or until tender. Toss a couple of times to move the top veggies to the bottom. Now it’s up to you if you want to cut the veggies in half again, I don’t. Cook the pasta until tender while cooking veggies, rinse and cool to room temperature. Cool veggies to room temperature once cooked then toss everything together with the remaining oil, balsamic, salt, pepper and herbs. Excellent with just good ‘ol dried oregano…from the farm, of course! This is also very good served warm and easy to take to picnics or potluck

Newsletter – September 17, 2018

Dear Friends of the Farm,

This is week 15 out of an 18 week season; only 4 weeks left… Goodies you should get are Walla Walla onions, red beets, daikon radish, cucumbers, squash, eggplant, bell & jalapeno peppers, broccoli, cauliflower (either cheddar or purple), tomatoes, corn (there is a possibility not everyone will get it) and either muskmelon or orange flesh honeydew.

We are done with watermelon for the season, but the late season cauliflower and broccoli are on! Yay!! We really try to get these crops to come on at different times so we can spread out the goodness. But this is such a crazy year! Even though we planted these crops two weeks apart, you are getting them both this week.

Daikon Radish is used a lot in Asian cooking and its good raw or cooked. It can be hot and spicy or it can be sweet. Shred it and add it to your next stir-fry to at a little kick to your meal! It is also excellent pickled or fermented. It’s extremely good for you!!! Take some time to look up recipes for this special radish!

September 11th & September 12th are two dates that will stick out in our memories. No one will forget for a very long time, where they were when the towers fell. It was a Tuesday & we were doing distribution under the big willow trees at the home place. Shock was in all our minds and on our faces. A member drove his car over and turned on the radio so we could all hear what was going on.

September 9th-12th is a special time in Colorado history because five years ago we had historic rain that created flooding in neighborhoods across the Front Range. Streets became raging rivers and water filled homes. Aurora & Lyons both received 15 inches of rain in that time period and many other cities and towns along the Front Range were right behind them. Estes Park and Lyons were cut off from the rest of us and people had to be evacuated by helicopter out of Lyons. It was literally an island! Both roads to Estes Park were heavily damaged. The last of the construction on Hwy 34 west of Loveland will be completed this year.

But what was not talked about much was where all that water went. It all converged in Greeley! The South Platte and the Poudre rivers join in Greeley and become one river. There was so much stuff floating down the river; such as cars, propane tanks, wood, trash and lots of junk. It would crash into the bridges and sometime get stuck there. Authorities were so worried about bridges coming down that no one was allowed to cross them. And due to flooding, I-25 was shut down, off & on, for days. Greeley was cut off too! It was weeks before the bridges could be inspected & approved for travel. To get to Greeley we traveled south to Ft. Lupton, went west to I-25, and then headed north and east again on Hwy 34 into Greeley. What would normally take 15 minutes took 45 minutes to an hour!

This was a trying time for just about everyone. Basements needing to be pumped out, items sorted through and cleaned up or discarded, drywall had to be removed and the drying out process began. Some farms in the Boulder area lost all their topsoil and other farms down river were buried in it. This was considered a 500-1000 year flooding episode. Let’s hope they are right!

Some good news: September 23rd is right around the corner and I can hardly wait! Thank you all for your generosity! The Farm to Table Dinner is filled and the Go-Fund-Me account is climbing!!

Newsletter – September 11, 2018

Dear Members,

This week you are getting Yukon Gold potatoes, white onions, carrots, turnips, cucumber, squash, bell peppers, a sweet frying pepper called Canario, Anaheim, jalapeno, tomatoes and muskmelon. We think everyone will get a honeydew and we hope each day of delivery will get a different kind of watermelon.

This whole season has been so strange & so hot! Temperatures were so warm in the spring; we have never picked tomatoes, eggplant, squash, cucumbers and melons so early in the season and your shares have shown this. We hit our peak of the season in late July and early August. Plantings of crops that should have been just starting to ripen in September have already been picked. Tomatoes we anticipated to pick at the end of September by the box we are now giving to the weekly CSA Shares. It’s so crazy! Whenever the weather gets wacky, it always affects the heirlooms first. Unfortunately, that is what happened to the heirloom tomatoes. They cannot withstand changes or insect impacts. Along with the drought comes grasshoppers…and they love all veggies and do nothing but eat all day!

We are reaching the end of the season and little by little things are dropping off. This is because of the drought (we have gotten no rain at all this summer) and with all that heat, everything ripened a month early! We are gleaning our own fields giving you everything we can. Your share may lighten as the season finishes.

Fruit/honey/oil: This week, Rancho Durazno will be bringing us a few more peaches. We think the bags had something to do with the peaches developing bad spots and then going bad on us way before they should have. Bring your own bag; you will be pulling peaches out of a box to take home, just like you do with your tomatoes.

We received honey from Lazy Bee Ranch today. What makes this batch so exciting is that all of it came from the bees on our farm! That is why we delayed the delivery to our one-time-only customers. We knew they were going to keep our honey separate and we wanted it to be a surprise for our CSA members! Please let us know what you think and how it may taste different from anything else you may have gotten!!

Healthy Harvest Olive Oil will also be delivered to our monthly orders and those who have ordered extra jars.

Lamb: A half of a lamb is still available for processing on October 29th and we still have 6 more lambs that will go to processing in January. If you would like to order a half ($225) or a whole ($450), please let us know. We can add it to your account and send you a statement.

Farm Tour and Dinner: Wanted to give you a little more information about the 23rd of September! There will be a farm tour so you can see the farm & explain what we plan on doing with our fields. You will see areas of the farm already in no-till and areas we are experimenting with. You will see equipment we already have and explain the use of each piece and why we need the no-till planter. Plan on joining us at 4pm for a hayride & popcorn to see this exciting part of the operation. Hors d’oeuvres, drinks & dinner will follow! Make your reservations at monroefundraiser@gmail.com. We are so excited to announce that Sam’s parents that used to run Brillig’s up on ‘The Hill’ in Boulder for 25 years are joining us in the kitchen along with Scott, our intern, who is running the show. Scott also has a dear friend who has helped put on these events will also be helping out. It sounds like we have an excellent staff to prepare the meal we will be receiving!!