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LOCALLY GROWN, ORGANIC PRODUCE DELIVERED TO YOUR DOOR.

CSA BOX CONTENTS WEEK OF MARCH 2ND

03/02/15 — Scott

CSA Box Contents Week of March 2nd CSA Box Contents Week of March 2nd

Large Box
Beet, Red
Cabbage, Red
Carrot, Orange
Greens, Chard, Rainbow
Greens, Collards
Greens, Salad Mix
Greens, Spinach
Herb, Dill
Lettuce, Mixed head bag
Potato, Sweet
Scallions
Squash, Butternut
Turnip, Purple Top
Medium Box
Beet, Red
Carrot, Orange
Greens, Chard, Rainbow
Greens, Kale, Curly
Greens, Spinach
Herb, Dill
Lettuce, Mixed head bag
Potato, Sweet
Scallions
Turnip, Purple Top
Small Box
Beet, Red
Carrot, Orange
Greens, Kale, Curly
Herb, Dill
Lettuce, Mixed head bag
Potato, Sweet
Turnip, Purple Top
Individual Box
Beet, Red
Carrot, Orange
Greens, Kale, Curly
Lettuce, Mixed head bag
Turnip, Purple Top

FROM THE FARMER'S PERSPECTIVE

02/26/15 — Farm

Race Course Garden Gallup 5k Race Course

There is so much going on at the farm these days, I can hardly contain myself.   First, this weekend, we welcome the amazing Kate Payne, author of the Hip Girls Guide to Homemaking and the Hip Girls Guide to the Kitchen, back to JBG.   She is teaching a class on the basics of canning, pickling, and fermenting.  She'll also be doing a demo on how to preserve Asian inspired pickled carrots and scallions.   That sounds amazing, and believe me, Kate knows her stuff - I learn something new from her every time.  My thanks to Kate for sharing her knowledge with us - for more info and to reserve your spot (we only have a few left!), just click hereAnd don't worry about the cold - we will be in our greenhouse with the radiant heated floor!

pickling-graphic

As an added benefit, all participants in Kate Payne's workshop will get to see our beautiful fields out at River Road (4008 River Road, Cedar Creek, TX - just 10 miles East of ABIA).  You won't believe how great it looks out there!  Sometimes, I can't even believe it myself, considering how small my garden was when I got started.  It wasn't that long ago that I was using every inch of my backyard (and front and side yards) over on Holly Street.  I guess you could say that my love of growing took over my life!  Check out this image of me from not so long ago in my backyard:

Brenton working in original backyard on Holly Street Working in original backyard on Holly Street

JBG's Certified Organic Transplant Sale Begins Saturday!

My hope is that these images will inspire some of you to start your own backyard gardens.  Who knows, maybe you'll get hooked like me!  But really, there is nothing like the experience of growing your own food - I can't recommend it enough.  Plus, if you have kids, tending a garden is a great way to connect them with the food they're eating.  They will carry this knowledge with them for life.  It is amazing to watch a transplant grow and produce food - clearly, I can't get enough of it!

For those of you inspired to start your own garden (as well as those of you who are seasoned gardeners), our Certified Organic Transplant Sale is about to begin!  We will have transplants available for those who attend Kate Payne's pickling class on this Saturday the 28th.  Then, on the next three Saturdays, March 7th, 14th, and 21st, our transplant sale will be in full swing from 9am to 2pm out at our farm at 4008 River Road, Cedar Creek, TX.  This way, when you pick out your transplants, you can have a look at our new greenhouses!  Click here for more info on our Certified Organic Transplant Sale.

Spring Hoedown & Garden Gallop on April 4th!

Finally, from the lead picture on this post, you may have guessed what I am most excited about - our Spring Hoedown on April 4th!  This year, for the first time ever, it will be out at River Road (this is just 10 miles east of ABIA - click here for a map).  Plus, it will include the Garden Gallop, a 5k race and fun run, AND a barn dance!  The race part is like a dream come true to me.   I love to run - I frequently come up with my most creative ideas while running.  In fact, I often carry a small tape recorder with me when running so I can record all of these ideas right as they come to me.  Later, at my desk, I try to transcribe my out of breath musings and connect to the creative energy that running brought forth.

Another reason I like running so much is that I see things from a new perspective.  That is why I am so excited about this Garden Gallop - my hope is that all of you who participate in either the 5K or the 1 mile fun run get to see the farm in a whole new light.  For me, it is the perfect way to take a tour of our fields.    The course will go through our 200 acre farm and the Farmshare Austin teaching farm right next door.  And, part of the proceeds from this year's Spring Hoedown will also benefit Farmshare Austin, the nonprofit that trains beginning farmers and increases access to fresh produce in our community.  So, I hope you will lace up your running shoes and join me on the Garden Gallop.  Who knows?  I might even run in costume!  To register to run, just click here.

Who is that masked man? Who is that masked man?

And, there's more!  The Garden Gallop is just the start of the fun.  If you're not a runner, I hope you will join us for the second half of the day.  I am super excited about the musical line-up: La Tampiquena & Mr. Will, Out of the Blue, Show & Tellers, and Gumbo Ce Soir!  I am so excited that this week I have been building a stage!  My thanks to architect Matthew Leach for designing it - below, you will see his drawing of the stage followed by pictures of it being built.  In addition to the live music, we will have farm-to-table BBQ and veggie plates from Iron Wood Ice House.  The dessert will be potluck, so bring your best sweet dish along to share.  One more thing: we're also sprucing up the old barn so we can all dance in there.  Truly, this is going to be one amazing Spring Hoedown - click here for more info and to get your tickets.

New stage as desined by Matthew Leach New stage as designed by Matthew Leach

Building of the new stage begins!  Photo by Scott David Gordon Building of the new stage begins! See if you can match this piece with Matt's drawing.  Photo by Scott David Gordon

AMPLIFY AUSTIN LAUNCH PARTY FOR FARMSHARE!

02/26/15 — Farm

Photos by Farmshare Austin student, Lizette Dahlgren. Photos by Farmshare Austin student, Lizette Dahlgren.

Join the staff and students of Farmshare Austin at Prizer Gallery (located at 2023 E. Cesar Chavez) from 5:30pm to 8pm on Thursday, March 5th for drinks & appetizers as they gear up for Amplify Austin's 24 hours of giving. 

We'll have beer from Hops & Grain & Real Ale, wine, & appetizers made with fresh vegetables from Farmshare. The gallery walls will feature documentary photographs of Farmshare's new farmer education program.

Come have a drink, eat some good food, & learn about how Farmshare is training new farmers & increasing food access in our community. This event is free and open to all - hope to see you there!  Click here for more info.

IMAGES FROM THE FARM

02/26/15 — Farm

Our greenhouse is full of activity.  Photo by Scott David Gordon Our greenhouse is full of activity. Photo by Scott David Gordon

As we gear up for Spring, our greenhouses are full of transplants - both for us and for your gardens!  We hope you will join us for our Annual Spring Certified Organic Transplant Sale!  Here are some of the photos Scott captured of what's going on in our greenhouses.  Hope to see you out there on Feb. 28th, March 7th, March 14th, or March 21st!

Romaine lettuce transplants.  Photo by Scott David Gordon Romaine lettuce transplants. Photo by Scott David Gordon

Our greenhouse manager, Enrique, organizing flats.  Photo by Scott David Gordon Our greenhouse manager, Enrique, organizing flats. Photo by Scott David Gordon

Transplants.  Photo by Scott David Gordon Transplants. Photo by Scott David Gordon

Kale transplant.  Photo by Scott David Gordon Kale transplant. Photo by Scott David Gordon

And, in our fields...

Spinach harvest.  Photo by Scott David Gordon Spinach harvest. Photo by Scott David Gordon

Just harvested spinach.  Photo by Scott David Gordon Just harvested spinach. Photo by Scott David Gordon

We continue to put lots of transplants into the ground.  Photo by Scott David Gordon We continue to put lots of transplants into the ground. Photo by Scott David Gordon

Photo by Scott David Gordon Photo by Scott David Gordon

PARSNIP & TURNIP PUREE W/ DINO KALE

02/26/15 — Farm

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By Jessye Hipp

Hide the veggies and the salad on the dinner plate without your kids every knowing it’s there!

This puree is perfect for upping the nutrient levels for our kid’s dinner.  They will assume the puree is extra creamy mashed potatoes and will gobble them right up!  Also, by combining the puree with thinly sliced kale, they won’t be able to fight you on eating salad!  I learned this trick when I was living in The Netherlands, where they cut up and mix everything on the children’s plates together so they can’t pick anything out that they “don’t like”; it’s genius.  This is a real winner.  Enjoy!

Parsnip & Turnip Puree w/ Dino Kale

Time: 30 mins  Serves: 4

-1lb parsnips, peeled and diced

-2 medium turnips, peeled and diced

-1/2 cup of heavy cream

-4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed

-1 rosemary sprig, whole

-2 tbls unsalted butter

-salt & pepper

-1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

-1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

-1 cup of dino kale, thinly sliced

-1 tbls chives, thinly sliced

-1/2 tbls olive oil

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Place diced parsnips and turnips into a medium saucepot, cover with water, salt generously, and bring to a boil.  Simmer the veggies until they are very tender when pricked with a fork.  About 10-15 minutes.

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Meanwhile, in a small saucepot, combine the heavy cream, butter, garlic, red pepper flakes, rosemary sprig, and a sprinkle of salt and pepper.  Bring the cream mixture to heat over medium-low.

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Drain the veggies, and then return them to the saucepot immediately.  Allow some of the excess water to evaporate.

With a hand blender, or you can transfer the veggies to a stand blender or food processor, begin to puree the veggies.   Slowly adding the cream mixture as needed. Puree until the mixture is completely smooth.

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Add in the parmesan cheese and dino kale.  Mix over low heat until everything is well combined, and the kale has gotten a chance to wilt slightly.  About 5 minutes.

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Taste for any additional salt and pepper needed.

Lastly, drizzle in the small bit of olive oil.

Enjoy with chicken, steak, or pork!  Just substitute for mashed potatoes!  The kids won’t even know ;)

CSA BOX CONTENTS WEEK OF FEBRUARY 23RD

02/24/15 — Scott

CSA Box Contents Week of Feb 23rd CSA Box Contents Week of Feb 23rd

Large Box
Beet, Red
Cabbage, Red
Carrot, Orange
Greens, Chard, Rainbow
Greens, Collards
Greens, Salad Mix
Greens, Spinach
Herb, Dill
Lettuce, Mixed head bag
Potato, Sweet
Scallions
Squash, Butternut
Turnip, Purple Top
Medium Box
Beet, Red
Carrot, Orange
Greens, Chard, Rainbow
Greens, Kale, Curly
Greens, Spinach
Herb, Dill
Lettuce, Mixed head bag
Potato, Sweet
Scallions
Turnip, Purple Top
Small Box
Beet, Red
Carrot, Orange
Greens, Kale, Curly
Herb, Dill
Lettuce, Mixed head bag
Potato, Sweet
Turnip, Purple Top
Individual Box
Beet, Red
Carrot, Orange
Greens, Kale, Curly
Lettuce, Mixed head bag
Turnip, Purple Top

FROM THE FARMER'S PERSPECTIVE

02/19/15 — Farm

150219_SDG221578 Getting behind the wheel. Photo by Scott David Gordon

This past Sunday, I attended a potluck for the Growers Alliance of Central Texas (Gro-ACT).  Gro-ACT is comprised of local growers, and we meet periodically to share information on farming and to socialize.  On Sunday, we went out to Munkebo Farms.  I had never been out there before, and I thank Germaine for hosting and showing us around the place.  It was fun to see all the ducks, chickens, guineas, wild boar, pigs, and cattle they raise.

One thing I really like about these Gro-ACT gatherings is that it gives me a chance to talk with farmers who have more experience than I do.  For example, I was looking forward to talking with David Pitre, long-time farmer at Tecolote.  On Sunday, I told him about my decision to use as little plastic as possible at JBG and wanted to get his thoughts on how best to farm without it.

David echoed my feelings about plastic and said he doesn't like to use it, either.  He said they do use drip tape, but they work to make that last as long as possible through taking good care of it and patching it when needed.  They plant mainly on bare ground and cultivate when needed for weeds; in fact, the only crops they mulch at all are peppers and eggplant because they stay in the ground so long.  His answer both surprised and relieved me - I was surprised that he didn't need to mulch most of his rows, and I was also relieved that he was able to make weed control work through cultivation.

Another reason that I like to go to these potlucks is the food!  Farmers often are good cooks, and this group didn't disappoint.  I wanted to do my part by bringing something  good to eat, too, so I devised a recipe for vegetable rolls wrapped in collard leaves.  I have say, they were pretty good!  Here's the recipe if you want to give it a try.

150219_SDG221643 Collard greens growing in the field. Photo by Scott David Gordon

Collard Vegetable Rolls

Ingredients:

-(1) bunch collard greens (slice off the stem and the center vein so it will roll up well; once you do this, the leaf will look a little bit like the shape of a football)

-(1) bunch carrots

-(1/4) red cabbage

-(1-2) beets

-(2) avocados

-(1) head lettuce

-(2-3) small Mexican limes

-(1) bunch multiplying onions/shallots

-fresh ground pepper and salt

Directions:

Using a small stock pot, boil about one inch of water.  Then, place the trimmed collard leaves into the boiling water and then flip them over.

Lay out the collard leaves flat so you can fill them like a burrito.

For the vegetables going into the collard rolls, make sure that they are all very finely cut up.  I did this by grating the carrots, using a mandolin for the beets, and slicing the lettuce, cabbage, and multiplying onions as thinly as I could.  Slice the avocados into fourths and use one quarter per roll.

Once you have your collard leaves laid out flat and all of your vegetables cut finely, place the vegetables onto each roll like a burrito.  Then, once you have included everything, squeeze the vegetables with a little lime and sprinkle with freshly ground pepper and salt before folding up the sides of the leaves and rolling shut like a burrito.

Then, slice each roll in half before serving.  For a condiment, I used Braggs.  Also, I brought along some hummus from Tom's Tabooley, and it was fantastic with these rolls.  I was happy to see Tom's Tabooley set up at the Hope Farmers Market for the first time last Sunday.  Thanks, Toms Tabooleh, for being there and giving me the idea to serve it with my rolls!

DSC09256 Look at that growing strawberry! Photo by Carrie Kenny

On another exciting note, we have strawberries growing in our high tunnel greenhouse!  It's a small crop, but it looks like it is doing well!  Maybe next time we can plant more!
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