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Showing posts from 2014

Cheese Class Announcement

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We are scheduling 4 classes this quarter:
February 15th

Wood Fired Pizza/Mozzarella Making Class and Luncheon
Come on out to Morning Song Farm for our first ever wood-fired pizza and mozzarella cheese making class. Morning Song Farm is excited to partner with Chef Zach Bonjiorno from Bonjiorno Pizzerias. Zach is old school and enjoys demonstrating how to make an outstanding wood fired pizza that you will never forget. We'll focus the cheese making portion of the class on two kinds of mozzarella; one that is fast and easy, and one that takes longer but is more intensely flavored.  Clickhere
                   to go to our meetup.com site for more information.

January 25, February 22, March 22

Beginning Cheese Making Series

A series of three classes, take one or all.  We'll focus the first of 2015's classes on a few of the fun and easy cheeses that will easily turn you into a cheese maker!

Click here
to go to our meetup.com site for more information.

Harvest Shot, New Year's Week, 2014

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Darn cold out here this week, unlike the last two Decembers; this feels like winter. Neighboring Temecula got down into the high 20's last night I hear, and although warmer in Rainbow, it's still lingering close to freezing temperatures at night here; which may mean tree injuries. On the bright side, our deciduous fruit trees require SOME chill, and for two years we've had almost no plums. We should be getting a bumper crop this year.

CSA Box Harvest Shot For December 10, 2014

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Today's box is slightly different than yesterday's box because the Protein Crunchy Bean Mix wasn't ready yesterday. We'll move production back a day now that the nights are colder; so hopefully next week we won't have this disappointment. Lot's of mandarins now for a while! The leafy green in the center of the photo is Italian parsley. Super easy to grow, and a lot less strong tasting compared to the curly parsley varieties.

CSA Box Harvest, First Week In December, 2014

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Nothing unusual here that would need identification. First week in December is late for our first Satsuma mandarin harvest. Plenty of limes for a while! The image here has only one beet, plenty more in actual boxes. And the long onion looking thing is a leek. I chopped mine up and used in a stir fry...using mostly only the root end and all of the white part of the plant. The top part is too tough.

December's Delivery Schedule Changes

The holidays are here, and as always, we change the last week in December's deliveries by one day. Here's the schedule:
Riverside County: December 23 goes to December 22 (from Tuesday to Monday)
San Diego County: December 23 goes to December 22 (from Tuesday to Monday)
Orange County: December 24 goes to December 23 (from Wednesday to Tuesday)


Thanks!


We'll also put reminder notes in everyone's boxes.



CSA Harvest Ticket for the Week of Thanksgiving, 2014

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This week's Large Garden N Grove CSA Box. Three herbs: cilantro, small sprig of rosemary and curly parsley. And the only unusual veggie this week is our beautiful dandelions in the bottom left of the image above. The first of the zutano avocados of the season, in large shares only this week. Yep, the hiatus of avocados have come to an end. With 500+ trees, and several varieties, (mostly Hass) we have avocados in our CSA boxes 9-10 months out of the year. By the time August-September rolls around and we're out of the fruit, many of our much appreciated CSA members are telling us they're OVER guacamole.

Dandelion for Dinner

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We don't get dandies in the CSA boxes that often, but everyone got bunches this week! Tell me what you think. Similar to a spicy arugula, dandies are among the most celebrated healthy greens in the Chinese herbalist tool kit. Check this link out if you'd like to learn more about dandelion studies and health benefits:
see here


Blooming Amaranth Grain Heads

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Amaranth is among the grains written about years ago in, Save Three Lives, A Plan for Famine Prevention by Robert Rodale. Some of my readers may remember that the Rodales published the Organic Gardening Magazine and were champions of all things pure and clean long before organic certification and commercialization of the organic meme happened along. So...that must be 20 years ago now. I became really interested in amaranth because of Rodale's writing and have grown some ever since, although never successfully enough to offer to CSA members as an edible. We thought we'd try something innovative and try sprouting the seeds, and although they do sprout, and they are a beautiful rose color, the sprouted seed isn't all that tasty. Yes, high in protein, but somewhat bitter.

A few of the tiny seeds from that recent experiment landed in the avocado grove, and yesterday I found these plants. They're gorgeous!

CSA Box for Week of October 28-29, 2014

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A typical fall CSA box. You'll also find something new from our sprout production facility. This is the first trial week, so if you have comments or thoughts about our newest addition to our sprout offerings: Protein Sprout Crunch. It's a tasty combination of lentils, spreckled peas, and green peas.
A few boxes will see our sunflower shoots, but we haven't perfected the growth cycle to get the shoots to reach maturity on the CSA days. We're either too early or too late. We'll get it right soon!

If You Want Your Cactus, You Can Keep Your Cactus

Fall at last! This morning was the first fall morning here...just a few days shy of November ...that I thought about needing a jacket. I skipped the jacket, and jumped in the golf cart to buzz down to the barn to meet the farm crew and found I'd just sat in a wet golf cart seat. Yeah! Fall and its accompanying morning dew is here for the duration. Now until July, careful seat checking is a prerequisite. Forgetfulness gets you a wet butt.  Just for fun, I checked the weather report in a Northwest community where I've always wanted to live...yep...32 degrees. It's really still beach weather here in northern San Diego, except in the very early morning. Which explains why we have a large and still growing population that our current water infrastructure cannot ever promise to accommodate consistently.

I don't think there is an easy answer, but the current Ostrich in the Mud Plan can't possibly end well. If water resources and population don't grow in tandem, one of…

CSA Recipe: Rosemary Parmesanirst Muffins

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Ingredients:2 cups all-purpose organic wheat flour2 tsps baking powder1/2 tsp salt1 tsp black pepper1/2 tsp cayenne pepper1 cup grated Parmesan cheese2 tsps fresh rosemary1 large egg1 cup milk1/3 cup olive oilDirections: first combine milk, egg and oil. Set aside. Then combine and thoroughly incorporate all dry ingredients.  Combine two and add your cheese and finely chopped rosemary. Spoon into muffin papers and bake at 350 for 12 minutes or so, until tops are lightly browned. Do not overbake.

Rosemary-Beer Chicken

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As easy crockpot meal, and makes great leftovers, too.
1 whole chicken cut into pieces
3 medium organic potatoes. (among the dirty dozen....use only organic, non-GMO potatoes)
1 can 12 ounces beer
2 medium carrots
1 cup chopped celery
1 medium chopped onion
1 Tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary

Place ingredients in your crockpot, and cook on medium for 5 hours.

California Farmers Struggle With Continued Drought

(NaturalNews) The end of September marked three straight years of severe drought for California, with the state receiving less than 60 percent of its average precipitation.

The lack of rainfall has resulted in immense suffering throughout the state, leaving low reservoirs, fallowed farmland, rising unemployment and complete drying up of some people's wells.

It's true that water is the essence of life. All things living depend on it, and without it the world around us would be nonexistent, however, what many of us don't realize is that California's drought could soon be hitting your pantry and if not this year, next year for sure.

With the arrival of the 2014 harvest season, not only the United States, but also the world, could soon feel the aftermath of the state's continued drought.

California is considered our nation's agricultural powerhouse, yielding a third of all produce grown in the U.S.

Central Valley, which consists of two valleys: the San Joaquin to the so…

Lime Season Is Upon Us

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I'm not going to include a pie shell recipe here. You'll need to have your baked shell ready. This recipe is not a typical restaurant lime pie. It's got a good bit more zap to it..meaning if you like sweet lime pie, certainly add more sugar. Or go to Denny's. I like my lime pie to roll just this side of too sour. With the fruit of 200 lime trees to experiment with, I've fiddled with this recipe for years. It's not for sweet tooths. I think it's the best lime pie on earth.

Ingredients:
3/4 cup sugar
5 Tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt

Mix together and set aside for a minute.
Combine 1 cup fresh lime juice, 3 beaten egg yolks, 2 tablespoons butter, and 3/4 cup boiling water. Add dry ingredients slowly, blending thoroughly. Bring entire mixutre to a full boil. cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is thick. This happens fast! Dump pudding-like mixture into pie shell and cool.

For the meringue:
Ingredients:
3 egg whites

Acorn Squash Pie

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I know that Squash Pie doesn't sound as tasty as Pumpkin Pie, but here's a little known fact: most store-bought pumpkin pies are actually squash pies. The pumpkins we all  buy at the grocery store or pumpkin patches make the WORST pumpkin pies ever. Those destined-to-be-decorations are bred for size, not taste. To reduce the effort and calories, I've been making this lately without a crust at all. Baked to perfection, the slices hold up just fine without a crust. Absolutely don't even think about omitting the whipped cream topping. That would just be wrong. Here's my time-tested favorite fall dessert recipe: Line a pie pan with pie dough. I often cheat and use Trader Joe's pie dough, which comes frozen. For a while there, they were having a problem with quality control, but the product now is excellent and a big time saver; especially if you don't make alot of pies and don't have a system. There was a time when I made a couple pies or quiches a wee…

I've Been Bad

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Corn Shoot Success

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Check out our latest success in the sprouting department! I cannot believe how sweet sprouted organic popcorn is! In fact the leafy green it's so sweet, it's probably going to be too sweet for some folks. We do have to cut the shoots, kind of like wheatgrass, from the roots.  I had hoped to deliver them intact, but the seeds are grainy and inedible once sprouted. The seed just isn't very tasty, while the roots is. I think the best way to deliver these, would be to cut only the shoots and package up, and toss the germinated seed and roots to our chickens. Our chickens sure enjoyed my first experimental batch of roots and seeds. They pretty much devoured the little pile of offerings like it was their first taste of candy.

Harvest for October 13-14, 2014

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At last we're into cooler weather! We sure snuck by the usual, miserably hot 92028 summer out here until September. Then, we found ourselves working in sauna-like heat for a few weeks. Anyone who thinks they'd like to farm in rural San Diego should try September out here first before giving up their day job. :/

Here's our harvest shot for this week. We also harvested a few late eggplants that ended up in some of the trade-in boxes, so if you have an eggplant in your possession from us...it's either a Black Beauty or probably the beautiful, variegated Gandia. We do save seeds from our heirlooms, and sometimes the results are crossed the next year, so some of our eggplant this year seems to be crosses of the two main varieties we grow. There are ways to avoid cross pollination so that heirloom seeds come "true" each year...we don't bother. Be aware that the chili peppers are indeed hot. Use only a tiny bit in your stir fries, and try the rest for future use…

Small Farmers, Self Employed And Other Undesirables Ordered Into Slavery

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Self Employed and Small Farmers And Other Undesirables Ordered Into Ukraine Slavery?
Being a farmer myself, the announcement, about the Ukrainian Ministry announcing official slavery to small farmers and others, caught my eye. 
If you research this, you’ll find reports of the US and Western backed Ukrainian government's official dabbling with the notion of forced labor camps.... under the guise of minor infraction punishments,  being reported as early as August of this year.  Reported by the New York Times on August 4th, 2014: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/05/world/europe/ukraine-rebels-enlisting-punishment-brigades-for-support-work.html?_r=0 Glum-looking detainees, seized by the rebel authorities for minor infractions, dig ditches, fill sandbags, clear brush and peel potatoes. More serious violations have been met with summary executions, according to some rebel leaders.”
Still…there is some modicum of precedent in unpaid “community service” being meted out as punishment, both hist…