This Weeks Box 9/27/2014

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Tree forts. Capture the flag. Riding bikes. Hide and go seek. Cutting through a new swath of wild land to get home before the sun goes down. Finding a creek. Spending a whole summer experiencing crawdads, submerged and partially decayed logs, dragonflies, polywogs, moss, fish, mud, cattails and some really mean geese. Try to build a raft. Have your raft fail. Think about it. Try again. Build a better raft. Have that one fail. Try harder. Finally build a raft that floats. Then build a raft that floats you and a friend. Make a rabbit trap. You know the one I am talking about. The one with the carrot dangling under a box. Hide behind a rock for 7 hours straight. Like wily Coyote, holding the string in anticipation. Get completely skunked. As a result, come to the realization at a very young age that cartoons are bullshit. Go out for a whole day with nothing but some curiosity and energy to spend. Throwing rocks. Kicking cans. Exploring. Gathering various fruit from the trees that hang over the fences. Have a feast on top of the water tower. Have a fruit fight with the leftovers. Drink water from strangers water hoses. (It was ok). It was all ok. Thank you trees. Thank you long dirt roads. Thank you rocks. Thank you dead lizards.  Thank you Mr Neidenmeyers’ black lab who used to chase me from his driveway and all the way to Foss Lane. Thanks for teaching me to be aware of my surroundings. Thank you black lab. For teaching me about real dangers and how to anticipate and navigate them successfully. And thank you mom and dad for trusting that the world works well enough for a 10 year old to go out and have a genuine worthwhile experience without an I phone or even a watch for that matter. Yet still return himself home before dark and on his own volition. Most of all, thank you nature. For being there. Always still.  I have found that upon years of observation, as well as much close inspection, it is eminently clear that you do nothing uselessly. I’ve never seen you tire. You never ask for anything. You are pure service. Forever giving. The ultimate teacher for those of us lucky enough who have taken the time to be educated instead of schooled.

The list
Summer squash
Sweet melons
Bell peppers, Jalapenos and Sweet frying peppers
Butternut, or Spaghetti or Fairytale pumpkin squash
Fresh Basil
Fresh Oregano

Tried & True Sungold F1 Tomato

These amazing Sungold cherry tomatoes are back. All hail! the candy of fruit. You know that you have been a member of a local farm food group for over a year when……………..
You had something you really liked in your box. And then it went away for a long time. And then it came back. If you remember these from before, welcome to your second season with the farm at Blue Sky Ranch! Unless it is your third. Or fourth season of course.

The jalapenos are all ripe. That means they are red. a little soft. And sweeter than green jalapenos. The the two varieties of pepper in the box are Cubanelle and hungarian sweet. They are both sweet frying varieties. So, there are no peppers in this weeks box that are going to send you running to get a glass of ice water. Promise.

I want to share how I like to work with the spaghetti squash. We harvest them a little earlier than the store. So, sometimes they are not fully stringy yet. But they are still wonderful. We cut them in half, pull out the seeds, steam both halves until the flesh gets soft. Pull out the two halves and let them cool a little. Then hold the warm half squash in one hand and scrape the squash out into a bowl with a fork in the other. Repeat with the other half and than add a drizzle of coconut oil and a squirt of lime. Stir and serve. Totally refreshing! Fresh pesto instead of coconut oil and lime is another favorite.

Butternuts and Fairytails are interchangeable in recipes.  Here is a real hearty and cheap soup…Pinto Bean and Tomato, Butternut Squash Soup

Roasted Tomato, Squash & Coconut Milk Bisque

1/2 onion
1cloves garlic
2 tomatoes halved. 1 cup cherry tomatoes works too.
1/2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled
1/2 can light coconut milk
3/4 cups vegetable stock or water
Vegetable oil
Lemon (optional)

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Place the tomatoes cut side up on a baking sheet. Drizzle with oil and sprinkle with salt. Rub oil over both sides of the tomatoes. Place the squash on another baking sheet, drizzle with oil and sprinkle with salt. Rub oil over all sides of the squash. Roast the tomatoes and squash for 30 minutes, flipping the squash halfway through. The tomatoes should be shriveling but not bursting and the squash should look nicely browned.

Chop the onion, mince the garlic and grate the ginger. When the tomatoes and squash are almost done, heat about 2 tablespoons of oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions, garlic and ginger and cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are soft and translucent. Add the tomatoes, squash, coconut milk and stock and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes, or until squash is very soft. Taste and add salt if needed.

Let soup cool slightly and puree until very smooth with a stick blender or in batches with a countertop blender. Taste and adjust seasoning, adding a squeeze of lemon if soup needs a little brightness. Serve immediately or let cool and freeze for up to 3 months.




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This Weeks Box 9-6-2014

boxThis mornings box contents
baby bok choy
summer squash
butternut squash
haas avocadoa
armenian cucumbers limes
persian cucumbers
bell peppers

This mornings bag contents
pink lemon

I think that many of you have seen this animated clip by Chipotle. To be honest, the first time I saw it, I did not watch it to the end.  It looked a bit depressing. Also, knowing that the clip was sponsored by a large fast food chain, I think I was expecting some fantastic and gratuitous ending with lots of logos and B.S.  I finally watched it all the way through recently.

I can really relate with how it feels to be out in the world and on the street and in the stores. There are so many appealing signs. And we hear so many adds. We see the writing that says “all natural” or “local” but we know that these are hollow and even sometimes deceptive uses of language. So many people can be seen and heard acting out the memes that the advertisers are pumping out like the skillful artsmen and women they are.

Have you ever been in town doing a bunch of errands and got hungry? If so, have you ever looked around at the signs and the stores and felt like you must be from another planet? Like you do not fit in? I have to say that it has happened to me. And sometimes I really do feel like the scarecrow in the animated clip.

I eat for vibrancy as much as I do for hunger. I also eat for heart. There is nothing better than enjoying quality ingredients prepared by people who are happy. Ingredients from your garden a local farm prepared with friends is even better for the heart. We all have our moments where we settle for less. But it is always nice to know that the real farm on the hill is always there for you.

Heirlooms…Please hurry!

Spaghetti squash…………. looking good!

Grilled Bok Choy

Butternut Squash Ginger Carrot Soup. Feel free to throw a potato or two in there if you have any leftover from last week.




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If you took a moment to look back and contemplate every peak experience you have ever felt that was influenced by rain, could you hope for anything other than that rain for this moment? For this place. Our space?A couple years ago, we had a two day storm. It was the biggest of the year. I came outside during one of the downpours and I saw this little hummingbird out in the open. She was just getting pelted by rain. 2 hours later, there was a brief break in the rain. She was still right there. Waiting for the next downpour I presume. I never tried to figure out what was going through this birds little brain. All I know is that she was fearless in her resolve. It was as if she was saying to all creation “Screw it. Just let it rain!”I have been participating in an intention operation to manifest some rain. I am quite familiar with art and practice of manifesting . I just realized that what I have not done this time is take on this little birds attitude. And drop the the doubt and negativity about the process and just say “screw it. Let it rain!”

I don’t usually quote Clint Eastwood. But when I do, it is this cool thing he said:

I don’t believe in pessimism. If something doesn’t come up the way you want, forge ahead. If you think it’s going to rain, it will.

I absolutely love this quote. Thanks Mr. Eastwood. You must be pretty smart.

The List
summer squash
bell peppers
hungarian sweet peppers
salad mix
white potatoes

 Grilled Mixed Sweet Peppers

Cantaloupe Basil Salad With Mozzarella

1 medium cantaloupe, cut into 1 inch cubes
10-20 leaves of basil,  (reserve a few whole leaves for garnish)
10 green olives, sliced
1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
1 cup fresh mozzarella balls, sliced into quarters
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons lime juice, from 1 lime
Salt and pepper to taste

In a large bowl, toss the cantaloupe, basil strips, olives, red onions and mozarella balls together. Lightly dress the salad with a long pour of olive oil and even longer drizzle of red wine vinegar. Toss with the lime juice. Generously salt and pepper the salad and taste.

This salad is great straight away but even better chilled for a few hours before serving, to allow the flavors to really meld.

Fish Fillet With Tomato Squash and Basil

Best Jalapeno Recipes Ever I can’t get over the peanut butter stuffed chocolate jalapeno!

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Well number 5 is getting a new pump. Woohoo! This is good.

Last week, we said there was chard in the box. There was not. It was shorted at the last minute. Thanks

Here is the list for today’s CSA.




green onions

red potatoes

lettuce mix

mexican squash

new type of cucumber.





white nectarine.


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passion fruit


red leaf lettuce

baby squash







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Thank you. That we still have enough water in the aquifer to keep the crops and trees refreshed.

 Thank you. For successful deer fences.

Thank You. for good weather. Not too hot. Not too cold.

Thank you. Ag supply, for extending credit this year.

Thank You. You know who. For flats of heirloom tomato starts donated after deer decimated the first crop of tomatoes.

Thank you Tim at Ramona Organics. For trading some of your best crates of peaches for our lemons.

Thank you. Local pollinators for doing such a good job after the beekeepers removed their boxes and relocated to irrigated land this season.

Thank you. Local Harvest and Farm Bureau for all the referrals.

Thank you. Amazing CSA hosts. For offering your homes every week.

Thank you volunteers. For putting your love into action through your work for the farm.

Thank you members for embracing the goodness and the bounty as well as the bad. For pulling out that bunch of chard with new excitement. As if it were the first time.

Thank You! Thank you! Thank You! Thank! You! Thank! You!


mongo big peaches
young sweet carrots
bell peppers
big bunch of basil
mexican squash
passion fruit
romaine lettuce
persian cucumbers

This young man shows us how to eat passion fruit. Apparently, there are no normal people who upload videos on how to eat rare fruits.


And in case you missed it, here is our friend from a few weeks ago. Showing how to eat a sapote


Black Bean Lettuce Wrap Featured Image

Black bean and summer squash lettuce wraps


Spinach and avocado peso pasta :substitute chard for spinach”


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This Week’s Box 06/28/2014

Here’s the list:

persian cucumbers
cactus apples
baby carrots
white and red potatoes
zucchini and yellow straightneck squash
green onions

One of our members shared a tip for keeping farm fresh baby carrots firm. If you cut off most of the greens, you can just drop the carrots “root first” into a glass of water for about an hour before eating or refrigerating. Even if the carrots are already rubbery, they are still alive, so putting them in water will firm them up in an hour or so.

​They are heeeeeere! I will spare the images of the carnage. The Deer did cause quite a bit of damage.

So, what do you do when deer start sneaking into the gardens and orchards at night?

​You take your manager of unwelcome guest services on a camp out until a proper deer fence is erected.

It took 4 days of doing regular work as well as working on the deer fence project and camping out at night. The fence is finally erected.  The deer left the garden alone with no one guarding last night. I love my bed. More than I ever knew.

I think the peaches are pretty awesome.

The oranges are super sweet.

How to eat cactus apples

How to eat a sapote I think this woman is actually pretty hilarious because it hard to tell if she is trying to be funny or not. And that can be very funny.

No lettuce this week. Can you guess why? Lettuce will be back next week. Along with strawberries. and maybe, just maybe our first taste of tomato. Ooooh?! Nice.

Peach and Swiss Chard Smoothie 

If you are vegan or vegetarian, you might not want to look at the next recipe. It has bacon. No judging please.

Grilled Peach Rainbow Chard and Bacon Salad

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