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What’s in the Share and in the Market – 7/15-19 –Summer is HOT!!

Blackberries will be heading your way soon!

 Here is what we anticipate being in the share this coming week, subject to change.  If you have gotten Chef items in jars – please bring them back or leave them in your delivery bin for us to retrieve so Chef can make more. Thanks. 

PRODUCE * indicates small share. Produce is from Flores Family Farm (George, Omar and family) Hague, Va.

FRUIT SHARE/from Agriberry

  • Blackberries
  • Peaches
  • Strawberries

PANTRY SHARE 

  • TBD

MEAT SHARE

BREAD

  • Prairie Grain Zucchini bread

DAIRY

  • Cheese – Assorted cheddars
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What’s in the Share and at the Market 7/2

Dear members — here is what we anticipate being in the share next week – subject to change. If you will be away for the July 4 holiday, but have not yet held your share, please email asap so we can hold you and adjust our counts for the farms. Thank you. 

PRODUCE * indicates small share. Produce is from Flores Family Farm (George, Omar and family) Hague, Va.

FRUIT SHARE/from Agriberry

PANTRY SHARE 

MEAT SHARE

BREAD

  • Billy Bread rustic sourdough –  Note that Billy Bread is now available to add on in the Bakery section! 

DAIRY

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What’s in the Share/Market — Recipes for 5/13+14

This week we have oysters and clams from Rappahannock River Oyster in the shell, and pints and quarts of shucked oysters. We are loving the garlic scapes and how they go so beautifully with the shellfish.

For those of you interested in cooking at home with your kids, or learning a few super easy delicious vegan dishes for yourself, the Sarno Bros. Wicked Healthy Food have made their Wicked Healthy Kids online cooking classes free. I love these guys. They are revolutionizing plant based meals.

Here is the preview menu of what we think will be in the share/Market.. The menu may change between now and when you actually receive it especially due to this weekend’s freezing temps. We are particularly watching its effects on the strawberries and other delicate items. We will try to let members know any major changes by email, and also post on our Facebook page, Facebook group, and on Instagram. Let us know if you have any questions or concerns! 

PRODUCE * indicates small share. Produce is from Flores Family Farm (George, Omar and family) Hague, Va.

FRUIT SHARE – Strawberries – please know there is a real chance that we may not have strawberries because of the freeze. It is possible that you will have subs, or partial subs with some of the delicious fruit value added products. Thank you for your patience with Mother Nature. 

PANTRY – TBD we are waiting to see what happens with the strawberries to see what you will get. 

OYSTERS + CLAMS

Rappahanock oysters and clams –  Topping, VA Check our facebook group for the video I made on how to open them, but please wear gloves. Here are some recipe suggestions Grill themOven roaststeam, or try one of these . Clams – Here’s how to roast, grill, steam and chowder them. Your oysters will be in a lightly tied plastic bag — when you get home, open the bag a little more so they can breathe, and put them in a cool part of your fridge. Please use your clams quickly as they are fragile. It is also good to use your oysters as soon as possible for best fresh flavor, as they are hardier, they will be ok in your fridge for a few days if you don’t get to them.  When you are ready to prepare your shellfish – look them over carefully and discard any that may be open. 

ALT MEATS for those of you who opted out of the oysters/clams. If you have not done this, let me know ASAP, otherwise you will get oysters. 

  • Polyface Breakfast links – here are some cool ways to use them for breakfast (or breakfast for dinner) including french toast egg cups, and breakfast mac and cheese
  • Lamb shanks – these are best cooked low and slow. try red wine braised lamb shanks with garlic and maple glazed veggies (use up any root veggies left over). 
  • whole trout – Virginia Trout Company Monterey, VA –  – so delicious and cook quickly. I usually just panfry with butter (or olive oil) and season with salt and pepper, or you can roll in cornmeal. easy! These are cleaned and ready to go – you can cut off the head if it bothers you and use it for fish stock. 

BREAD

  • Billy Bread – Rustic Sourdough — This is the famous Billy Bread!  Don’t distress if it starts to get hard before you can eat it all, although it is easy to eat it all at once – it is so delicious. Here are some ways to revive and  use leftover sourdough bread. 

DAIRY

  • Cheese -chevre – Goats R Us, Blackstone, VA – Robin and John have been with us as farmers for many years and we love their delicious creamy cheese. It freezes well if you aren’t going to eat it right away. Here are some ways to get you started with your goat cheese. 

TOFU for those with tofu add ons —Twin Oaks, Louisa, VA.  As so many of you are getting the incredible Twin Oaks tofu (available here – best tofu ever! ) Here is an easy roast tofu with veggies.  And there are a lot of recipes on the Twin Oaks site.

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What’s in the CSA Share 5/6+7 Oysters and Clams!!

Hello members – Happy May!!  sadly rutabagas have gone away…till next year. 

This week we have oysters and clams for our Meat/Full customers – if you don’t want the oysters/clams and have NOT opted out – please send me an email as soon as you can. Otherwise you will get them. This is especially important for our home delivered members as we will not be able to swap them out.  If you are having them home delivered, PLEASE make sure you have a cooler with ice pack for them to keep them fresh as we can’t guarantee their freshness once they leave our icy coolers. Thank you! 

For those of you interested in cooking at home with your kids, or learning a few super easy delicious vegan dishes for yourself, the Sarno Bros. Wicked Healthy Food have made their Wicked Healthy Kids online cooking classes free. I love these guys – and what they are doing for plant-based meals. You will probably see a lot of their recipes here bc they are really innovative and make vegan cooking fun and exciting. 

Here is the preview menu of what we think will be in the share for 5/6+7. Remember the menu may change between now and when you actually receive it due to weather, product availability. We will try to let you know any major changes by email, and also post on our Facebook page, Facebook group, and on Instagram. Let us know if you have any questions or concerns!  

PRODUCE * indicates small share. Produce is from Flores Family Farm (George, Omar and family) Hague, Va.

  • StrawberriesAgriberry – Hanover VA – These strawberries are full of flavor! That’s one of the benefits of sourcing strawberries locally! make small batch strawberry balsamic jam
  • Maitake Mushrooms* AM Fog, Afton, VA – Maitake is perfect for grilling vegans and meatless Mondays. Here are BBQ Maitake Skirt steaks from Wicked Healthy
  • Garlic Scapes* – Garlic scapes are the tender stem and flower bud of a hardneck garlic plant and will probably have a curly coil to them. Use them just as you would garlic — so they are perfect for stirfries, pesto, and marinades. Here is a guide to them. 
  • Kale – try goat cheese lemon pasta with kale! ; kale goatcheese tart; kale caesar salad
  • Asparagus* -roasted asparagus with walnuts and goat cheese
  • Arugula – make pesto, put on pizza with mushrooms and your garlic scapes,  or sautee. we like to freeze pesto in ice cube tray to have for later! arugula is good to use early in your share, as it is pretty delicate. 
  • Bombolini Pasta*- Richmond.   Fresh pasta cooks in a flash – usually 2 minutes or less – so follow directions carefully and err on the short side of timing.  Do not multi-task or walk away from pasta cooking or you will overcook it and be sad. Try this Mushroom. Garlic, Pasta Recipe
  • Bok Choy -Otherwise known as Chinese white cabbage is a staple ingredient in Asian dishes. The tender dark green leaves and crisp off-white-colored stalks provide a nice fresh crunch. The greens have a spinach-like taste with a very mild bitterness. I like to add them to my veggie kimchi, or I like to roast them. Roasted Bok Choy or try bok choy in vinegar oyster sauce; or vegan pho with bok choy and mushrooms and garlic why not! 
  • Spicy Salad Mix – For a sweet and healthy salad, add strawberries, chopped walnuts, red onion, and goat cheese. Top with balsamic vinaigrette dressing. Its delicious!
  • Salted Virginia Peanuts – Virginia Peanut Company, Franklin, VA – oh these are so ridiculously addicting….I am not even going to give you recipes bc you are going to eat them out of the can. If you have a peanut allergy, let me know so I can sub you out. 
  • Chamomile – this is always one of our faves. You can make cake, ice cream, syrup, tea…and more

OYSTERS + CLAMS

Rappahanock oysters and clams –  Topping, VA Check our facebook group for the video I made on how to open them, but please wear gloves. Here are some recipe suggestions Grill themOven roast or try one of these . Clams – Here’s how to roast, grill, steam and chowder them. Your oysters will be in a lightly tied plastic bag — when you get home, open the bag a little more so they can breathe, and put them in a cool part of your fridge. Please use your clams quickly as they are fragile. It is also good to use your oysters as soon as possible for best fresh flavor, as they are hardier, they will be ok in your fridge for a few days if you don’t get to them.  When you are ready to prepare your shellfish – look them over carefully and discard any that may be open. 

ALT MEATS for those of you who opted out of the oysters/clams. If you have not done this, let me know ASAP, otherwise you will get oysters. 

BREAD

  • Billy Bread – Rustic Sourdough — This is the famous Billy Bread!  Don’t distress if it starts to get hard before you can eat it all, although it is easy to eat it all at once – it is so delicious. Here are some ways to revive and  use leftover sourdough bread. 

DAIRY

  • Cheese -chevre – Goats R Us, Blackstone, VA – Robin and John have been with us as farmers for many years and we love their delicious creamy cheese. It freezes well if you aren’t going to eat it right away. Here are some ways to get you started with your goat cheese. 

TOFU —Twin Oaks, Louisa, VA.  As so many of you are getting the incredible Twin Oaks tofu (available here – best tofu ever! ), I’ve decided to add in a tofu recipe. Here is an easy roast tofu with veggies.  And there are a lot of recipes on the Twin Oaks site 

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Local Food’s Importance in a Time of Global Threat

Farm to Family/The FarmBus’ role as local food providers is critical, and is likely to become more so during the next few months. Promoting access to local and quality produce is what we do best. In this time of re-localization, and as more Americans are quarantined or practice the recommended social distancing, supply chains will get under stress, people will still need food, and you all are helping fulfill that need. We believe local food is more important than ever with the global threat currently facing our country especially in light of current shortages many of us are experiencing with key items in grocery and big box stores. We are working closely with our farmers and will to continue to provide you with the quality and convenience of local food. 

As many of you know, I studied Disaster Science/ Emergency Management at the University of Richmond 2007-09. The key course I took was called “Hazards and Threats of the Future.”  We had to pick a topic (mine was famine and severe hunger in the US and western developed countries) and do a 20 year forecast.  From all the info I gathered, I predicted a deliberate pandemic to control the world’s growing/over population. I read lots of material on Thomas Malthus and his Malthusian catastrophe mode – it’s worth a look if this kind of stuff interest you.  This was the catalyst that led me to start a new business –  Farm to Family and the Farmbus.  I wanted to create a sustainable food model in case our food supply chain was disrupted or halted all together.  Whether a pandemic is deliberate or not, I felt it of the utmost importance to focus on local food supply chains and food security.

We ask you to remain patient, fluid and agile as the landscape is changing very quickly. Our produce and fruit farmers are continuing to plant spring crops, the weather is perfect for strawberries and the bees are busy. Our meat and dairy farmers are occupied with stewarding newborn animals and the herds are enjoying outdoor grazing and sunshine. Luckily local food is not dependent on complex over stressed delivery chains.

After speaking with all our farmers and vendors we are not anticipating any disruptions, it’s business as usual, but as we know, things are very different today than earlier in the week. We are keeping a close eye on the rest of the world as well as what is happening in the US. Our farmers practice, and are certified Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) and Good Handling Practices (GHP) by the USDA. These are voluntary audits that verify that fruits and vegetables are produced, packed, handled, and stored as safely as possible to minimize risks of microbial food safety hazards. GAP & GHP audits verify adherence to the recommendations made in the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Guide to Minimize Microbial Food Safety Hazards for Fresh Fruits and Vegetables (pdf) and industry recognized food safety practices. Our dairy and meat farmers are subject to USDA testing, inspection and sanitation practices and our vendors are certified thru VDAC and adhere to those regulations. We and all of our farmers are keeping your health our priority by practicing additional sanitation action.  

We recommend that you wash down any fruits and vegetables – here is an easy DIY solution to use – and practice good sanitation with any other foods and containers you may be receiving from us. 

As of now we are going forward with next week’s shares, and if there are any changes/modifications. we will let you know. We recommend social distancing like you would anywhere else in public at our group pickups. 

 At this time we are not anticipating delays to our March 31st start. We are in contact with Eastern Market and our drop sites. If you want to switch over to home delivery, let Suzi know.  We will continue to do our best to get your food to you in a timely manner.    If you have questions, concerns or would like to brainstorm with Mark, please email or call him directly at 804-397-7337.  We would encourage more than ever share our services with friends/family, strangers, neighbors and co-workers!  

We will get thru this together.  If we need to modify things or any sudden changes come about we will let you know as quickly as possible and again we ask for your patience as we navigate this together.

Sincerely,

Mark, Suzi and our Farm to Family team