Time To Sign Up For Winter CSA

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When most people think of farming, they think of spring and summer with huge juicy tomatoes and crisp cucumbers.  I like that, but my favorite time is the winter.  Winter is when the lettuce is sweet and crisp, the kale loses its bitter bite, the broccoli heads up, and the beets and turnips make their balls.  I love these veggies, and grieve for them in the summer when they are gone. 

baby-beets

This is why we have a Winter CSA.  I know there are people in our veggie community who especially look forward to that beautiful lettuce, the profusion of greens, and no local fruit to be found at all, except some apples from the mountains.  This winter, we have planted so many pretty little things that my brain can hardly remember, but here is an incomplete list: 

  1. Three types of kale
  2. Collards
  3. Two types of chard
  4. Three types of beets
  5. Three types of turnips
  6. Four types of lettuce
  7. Herbs such as parsley, dill, fennel, cilantro and chervil
  8. Four colors of carrots
  9. Broccoli
  10. Cauliflower
  11. Two types of arugula
  12. Cress
  13. Three types of mustards
  14. Pac Choy and Tatsoi
  15. Garlic and onions
  16. Two types of sorrel

sfc_kale_lacinato_labeled

You can’t beat the diversity and nutrition of winter vegetables.  I also love the way farming is a pleasure in the Carolinas in the fall and winter.  Most of the time I am out there in jeans and a sweatshirt, and happy not to be sweating to death like in the summer.  There is another great blessing of winter: the weeds stop growing (or at least slow down a lot).  This is such a nice break after chasing weeds all summer.  Weeds are the bane of herbicide free farming.  We have high school kids who chase them all summer!  They also rejoice in the winter.

The bugs go away as well in the winter, for the most part.  It isn’t unusual to be dismayed every week of summer by the stink bugs, squash bugs, harlequin bugs, cucumber beetles, and all kinds of caterpillars.  There may be a few insects around in the winter, but they don’t cause much trouble.  It is easier to grow pretty produce in the winter than in the summer, if you farm without chemicals like we do.

Lastly, we don’t worry so much about the weather in the winter.  The summer is a constant prayer for it to either rain, or stop raining.  Normally, the winter is full of beautiful sunny days with just enough rain to make it all grow wonderfully.  Gone are the 100 degree days and no rain predicted for weeks.  We are just now getting our well and irrigation in place, so not worrying about rain and weather has been important.  Maybe next summer that won’t be such a stress.

Do you want to be a part of veggies in the winter?  Sign up for our CSA!

Joining our winter CSA is a great way to put your toe in the CSA waters, because it only lasts two short months, with six deliveries.  It is a great way to see how you like it, without the commitment of the whole spring, summer and fall.  We would love for you to join us.  Be a part of the local food community.

Eat your veggies,

Robin

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The amazing health benefits of strawberries

strawberries

photo credit: @organiceater

A month ago, Jay and I went to the International Strawberry Symposium in Quebec City.  There is so much new research going on right now in strawberries, that I was amazed.  One of the best talks was on the effects of strawberry bioactive compounds on human health, by Dr. Maurizio Battino at the Universita Politecnica delle Marche, in Italy.  This is what I learned.

Strawberries are being studied for the prevention and treatment of several chronic degenerative diseases and they do some amazing things!  Dr. Battino’s team tested fresh strawberries and strawberry extract on mice and humans for over 10 years.  They found that strawberry bioactive compounds were able to enhance plasma antioxidant capacity, folate levels, and vitamin C levels.  They also protect humans from intracellular reactive oxygen, reduced DNA damage, reduce inflammation and cytokine levels and restored functionality of damaged mitochondria.  Not only that, eating strawberries improved blood lipid profiles by lowering the low density lipoprotein cholesterol and triglycerides.  

There was another talk by Yves Desjardins, from the Universite Laval that was also very interesting.  He discussed the positive effect of strawberries on cardiovascular diseases, obesity, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, cancer, and neurodegenerative diseases.  Wow what a super food!  

What gives strawberries its superpowers?  According to Dr. Desjardins, they are rich sources of vitamins and phytonutrients and are especially rich in anthocyanins, phenolic acids, ellegic acids, ellagitannins, gallotannins, and condensed tannins.  These all have strong antioxidant activity.  Even so, his hypothesis was that the real power of strawberries is the effect of the polyphenols on the gut microbes and their ability to favor a healthy microbial community.  Specifically, they can stimulate the growth of a mucus inhabiting bacteria called Akkermansia nuniciphila, the anti-obesity bacteria.  This bacteria has been shown to improve intestinal epithelium tightness and to reduce inflammation.  To sum his research up, strawberries have great health benefits and it is likely that their bioactive compounds act as prebiotics to feed and enhance gut microbes.

These talks actually rekindled our healthy eating habits.  Strawberries aren’t the only food with high levels of phenolic compounds and anthocyanins.  All colorful fruits and veggies have high levels.  This conference renewed my commitment to load my plate at each meal with every kind of seasonal and colorful fruit and vegetable that we have in the fridge.  This includes strawberries, blueberries, muscadine grapes, chard with pretty red stems, red kale, beets, deep green broccoli, red lettuce and so many more.  Food really can be our pharmacy, and it works hard to keep us healthy.  I’m in!

Eat your veggies!

Robin

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I’m Not Sure I Like Eggplant

sfc_eggplant_american_labeled

Eggplant is at its finest when the weather is at its hottest!  By early August, the bushes are loaded and will keep producing until it frosts.  We grow enough to put them in CSA bags, however, it can elicit a few complaints from members.  To be honest, I’m not sure I like eggplant all that much either, but the deep purple skins are an antioxidant boom, and there are a few ways to cook it that even the biggest eggplant haters will be ok with.  

eggplant-rolatini

photo credit: Cannizzaro Famiglia

Fried eggplant, grain free

Ingredients:

  • A few Japanese eggplants (the long skinny type of eggplant) sliced into little rounds 
  • Coconut flour
  • Hemp seeds
  • Italian seasoning
  • Salt 
  • Coconut oil

Implement it.

Cut the eggplants into rounds that are about ½ inch thick.  Mix up about a quarter cup of coconut flour and a quarter cup of hemp seeds along with some Italian seasoning.  Sprinkle the eggplant with salt and  let them sit a few minutes, until they appear wet.  Then toss the eggplant rounds in the hemp/coconut flour mix.  Heat up some coconut oil (a decent amount) in your heavy skillet.  When  the oil is very hot, add the eggplant one layer deep.  Fry them until they are brown on the bottom, and turn them over with a fork to cook the other side until brown.  Remove from heat and  serve.   We had these with pork chops the other night, and they were really yummy.  

Here is an even easier method to try.  Make a sausage and veggie scramble.  The eggplant adds an amazing creaminess that is irresistible.  

Sausage and veggie scramble

Fry out about a half a pound of bulk breakfast sausage in a large frying pan.  When it is about halfway done, add one chopped Japanese or Italian (the fat round type) eggplant. When the sausage is nearly done, add halved cherry tomatoes.  A few minutes later, add chopped up greens, such as kale or chard.  When the greens are wilted, add five beaten eggs and scramble up the whole mix.  When the eggs are nearly set, top with cheese.  Mix that around until the cheese is melted and serve it!  The dish actually tastes way better than it sounds.  You will love it!  

Lastly, if you happen to get a big fat round Italian eggplant, then you need to make eggplant rollatini!  I put this recipe on the blog last season.  It is a never fail winner.  

Eat your veggies, even if they are strange and purple!

Robin

Fried eggplant, grain free
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Ingredients
  1. A few Japanese eggplants (the long skinny type of eggplant) sliced into little rounds
  2. Coconut flour
  3. Hemp seeds
  4. Italian seasoning
  5. Salt
  6. Coconut oil
Instructions
  1. Cut the eggplants into rounds that are about ½ inch thick. Mix up about a quarter cup of coconut flour and a quarter cup of hemp seeds along with some Italian seasoning. Sprinkle the eggplant with salt and let them sit a few minutes, until they appear wet. Then toss the eggplant rounds in the hemp/coconut flour mix. Heat up some coconut oil (a decent amount) in your heavy skillet. When the oil is very hot, add the eggplant one layer deep. Fry them until they are brown on the bottom, and turn them over with a fork to cook the other side until brown. Remove from heat and serve. We had these with pork chops the other night, and they were really yummy.
Bell's Best Berries http://bellsbestberries.com/
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It’s Fall Planting Time

jay seeding

I know it is hard to believe, but July is the time we plan for fall crops and get the seeds ordered.  The fall crop actually gets planted by mid-August.  We often try to be the first to market with several crops, so we may even push the common wisdom and try to plant some of our fall crops by early August.  We have a few gardens with good afternoon shade and irrigation that work pretty well for this.  Our planting strategy is to first plant Rabbit Eye Ridge and the fields that are closer to the house because they have irrigation.  This is essential because it is so hot here, these fall crops will not germinate and grow without adequate water.  We will plant our second planting of fall crops in the fields that are not irrigated.  Seed selection is tricky for fall plantings because the crops planted in late summer need to be very heat tolerant, and the crops planted later in the fall need to be very cold tolerant.  Read and choose varieties carefully if you are a grower.  Also be careful to choose varieties resistant to the insects and diseases you think you will encounter during the growing season you are targeting.  

We peruse the seed catalogs in July, and get all of our seeds ordered.  We also order our transplants.  I love this part of my job.  I want to plant everything!  My favorite seed choices for fall include Brussels sprouts, mixed lettuce, mixed kale varieties, colorful root vegetables, broccoli, cauliflower, chard, and cool season herbs.  Each one has its own strategy behind which variety to choose.

Kailey Cabbage Transplant

Lettuce: choose a heat tolerant variety for early planting, then shift to a cool season variety for later plantings that will be harvested in the winter.  Plant the warm season varieties in places with afternoon shade and irrigation.  Plant the cool season varieties in full sun and in fields farther away.  

Kale: the most heat tolerant varieties I have found are Lacinado and Siberian kale.  These go in first.  Then, I plant Red Russian for later season harvests, because it tolerates cold much better.  I also specifically look for something colorful and different.  I might do Redbor this year, or even a Portuguese kale just for juicers.  

Broccoli and Cauliflower: as with all winter crops, I buy heat tolerant varieties and cold tolerant varieties for successive plantings.  For broccoli and cauliflower, I also look for good disease resistance, as well as pretty colors.  The seeds for colorful broccoli are extremely expensive, but these crops do demand a slight premium at the market.  The key is to not waste any of the seeds.  This means I need to buy them as transplants.  If I direct seed them into the field with my seeder, too many get wasted.  It has to be transplanted.

Brussels Sprouts: these are a challenge because the time from when the plants emerge to when they can be harvested is very long.  They are not very heat tolerant either, so they cannot be planted too early.  This means that if they are planted in early September, when it finally cools off a little bit, they may not have time to mature before it gets too cold.  We use two strategies.  The first is to find varieties that have some heat tolerance and the shortest possible days to harvest.  The shortest I have found is 90 days.  Plant them early, and be ready to cover them with frost protection if you have to.  The second strategy is to find very cold tolerant varieties with a long days-to-harvest and try to overwinter them for an early spring harvest.  I’m going to do some of both this year.  Last year it didn’t work because it got so cold that everything froze out.  This year might just be a little warmer.  Everyone loves Brussels sprouts.  It is worth the extra work and a bit of risk.  

Root Vegetables:  I choose sweet turnips, colorful beets, colorful carrots, and different types of radishes.  I don’t hesitate to direct seed these crops with close spacing, because I can remove some of the crops as baby root vegetables, and allow the rest of the crop to mature to full size.  If is funny, but root vegetables sell well as babies, but it is much harder to sell full-sized beets or turnips.  

Herbs:  great winter herbs include several types of parsley, dill, cilantro, and chervil.  We plant all of these and love them.  These also make great beneficial insect habitat, so I love having them all around the farm.  

By the end of July, we have at least half of our fields empty and are preparing to plant fall crops in August.  The chore list for the last week of July and August includes removing many of the tattered summer crops, composting, tilling, raking, and preparing to plant.  I can hardly wait!  I love fall crops, and honestly, think I might be better at growing cool season crops than summer crops.  Not only that, I love the huge diversity of cool season crops.  Bring on the winter farming!

Eat your veggies,

Robin

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What Do I Do With This Okra?

Okra is absolutely the vegetable of the summer.  You plant it until it gets stinking hot, and then it is ready to harvest when it is stinking hot times two, July and  August!  All of us from the south are used to eating okra, because our grandma fried it up.  Our northern friends seem to be a little stumped and maybe even a little scared.  Fear not the okra.  I’m here to help, along with a little help from my friend Organic Eater.  

Grain free fried okra from Organic Eater. This is the traditional southern way of frying okra, but with healthier ingredients.

photo credit @organiceater

photo credit @organiceater

Ingredients:

  • A bunch of okra 
  • Coconut flour
  • Almond flour
  • Salt and pepper
  • Coconut oil

Implement it.

Cut the okra into rounds that are about ½ inch thick and put them into a bowl.  Sprinkle them with coconut flour and mix in the bowl to cover each one. Then some almond flour. Put them one layer deep in a cast iron skillet with hot coconut oil.  Fry them without stirring, until they are beginning to brown on the bottom then flip/stir them in the pan and fry until the other side is turning brown.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve them up!  

Roasted Okra

Ingredients:

  • Okra
  • Coconut oil
  • Curry powder
  • Salt and pepper

Implement it.

Heat oven to 400 degrees.  Toss whole okra in melted coconut oil, curry powder, and  salt and  pepper.  Spread evenly on  a cookie sheet.  Bake 15 minutes at 400 degrees.  They should be crisp tender when they are done.  If they are slimy, they have cooked too long.  

Fermented Pickled Okra

Ingredients:

Implement it.

Stuff the whole okra tightly in clean pint jars.  Add a peeled clove of garlic (or two or three).  Add a hot pepper.  Add a big sprig of fresh dill.  Make a brine of ¾ Tablespoon of salt to one cup of water.  Pour the brine over the okra, leaving about ¾ inch headspace.  Mix your starter culture as directed on the package, and add to each jar.  Put your pickle pebble or other weight on top of the okra.  Okra are hollow, so they float.  You will need to weigh them down to keep them under the brine.  Cover loosely (use your pickle pipe if you have one) and let ferment (set out on counter) about 5 days, then put in the refrigerator for 3 weeks.  Done!

Eat your veggies,

Robin

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But My Life Is Too busy To Eat Healthy!

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I feel like this all the time.  Our life is busy!  We run two farms.  I have a full time job.  We try to spend time with family.  On top of that, we are committed to our health and fitness.  That pretty much takes up all the hours.  When meal time comes around, it really can be difficult for me to muster up the mojo to make something healthy happen.  I know we are not the only ones with that problem.  Time to prepare healthy meals seems to be trouble for many people.  Here are my best solutions:

  1. Plan your meals.  I plan at least 4 good dinners per week and plan on cooking double so we have enough to stretch them out to 8 meals.   That works well if I can keep Jay from eating up all the food, so we will actually have leftovers!  Being able to just heat up a plate of healthy food without cooking sure is nice.  
  2. Do all your shopping, washing, slicing and dicing all on one day.  Multiple trips to the store is a real time buster, as well as a money sink.  I don’t know why every time I go into the store it costs at least $100.00, no matter what I went there for!  I try to make my one trip on Saturday afternoon, and grab all that we need for the week, and I know what I need for the week because I planned my meals!  I also hit the meat and milk venders at Atherton market for those types of things.  I take it all home, sort it out and get it in the fridge.  I also do a big veggie washing on Saturday as well, so that I have all I need, ready to go.
  3. Often on Sunday and Wednesday afternoons, I will cook the meat for several different meals.  This usually involves the grill or the smoker.  Then, for my meal, I just have to slice up some tomatoes and cucumbers or quickly sauté some squash or greens.  This is especially easy if all my veggies are ready to toss on a plate or in a pan.  I love having things mostly done, so I don’t have to think too hard, and the meal comes together quickly.  
  4. Some weeks I make cauliflower pizza crust and use it for several meals.  I make a pizza for lunch and a breakfast pizza for breakfast.  It is great to have a few pieces left over from each of these, that can work for another meal.
  5. Recently, two of our CSA pros (Organic Eater and Tina B.), have been telling me about their “instant pot” electric pressure cooker.  They both seem to love this thing.  Tina says you can toss a frozen chicken in there and have it table ready in 45 minutes.  She said it browns, it crocks, and it pressure cooks.  It also reportedly can have fresh limas cooked into good old southern style soft beans in 6 minutes and a pot roast ready in 40.  This is my type of convenience.  I ordered one yesterday.  I’ll report back on it later, but if it works like they say, it will be a huge help! There are plenty of times I don’t cook because nothing is thawed, or whatever is thawed, will take too long to prepare.  This kind of convenience sounds great!
  6. Lastly, breakfast seems to be one of our bigger challenges.  We often will make a huge 12 egg sausage frittata and eat that for several days.  Sometimes I just scramble up sausage, greens, onions and anything else with eggs.  That comes together in about 15 minutes and always tastes great. 

Any way you do it, cooking nutritious food is important.  The few times that we don’t eat right, we feel the effects in our sleep, joints, energy, mood, and focus.  I don’t have time in my life to have any of those things go wrong.  Good food seems to be key.

Eat your veggies,

Robin

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Spaghetti Squash Breakfast

SPAGHETTISQUASHBKFSTCASS

Spaghetti squash are a great low-carb vegetable that most people use in place of pasta.  Here is a delicious way to eat it that has nothing to do with pasta, and enhances that natural yumminess of the squash, and makes a nutritious and satisfying breakfast. 

chicken eggs

Ingredients:

  • 1 large or a couple of small spaghetti squash
  • ½ pound of breakfast sausage (I always recommend pasture-raised meats)
  • 4 eggs (from a local farmer, of course!)
  • Grated cheese (grate your own, so you are only eating cheese and not other ingredients)
  • Cream cheese (organic or grass fed/pastured is best)
  • Salt and pepper

Implement it:

Cut the squash in half, remove seeds, drizzle with olive oil, add salt and pepper and roast in the oven for 40 minutes at 350.   Let cool overnight.  The next morning, loosen the squash flesh like pasta and put in a big bowl. Scraping the inside of squash with a fork works well.  Mix with about ¾ cup of grated cheese and return it to the skins like a filled cup.  Fry out the sausage and add it to the top of each squash cup.  Make an indention in each squash cup by using a spoon, and crack a whole egg in each.  Add little blobs of cream cheese all over the top of each squash cup.  Add a little bit more grated cheese to the top of each.  Add a little salt and pepper to the top of each.  Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes.  The cheese should be melted and the eggs cooked but soft.   Serve a squash half per person.  Yum!

Eat your veggies,

Robin

Spaghetti Squash Breakfast Casserole
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Ingredients
  1. 1 large or a couple of small spaghetti squash
  2. ½ pound of breakfast sausage (I always recommend pasture-raised meats)
  3. 4 eggs (from a local farmer, of course!)
  4. Grated cheese (grate your own, so you are only eating cheese and not other ingredients)
  5. Cream cheese (organic or grass fed/pastured is best)
  6. Salt and pepper
Instructions
  1. Cut the squash in half, remove seeds, drizzle with olive oil, add salt and pepper and roast in the oven for 40 minutes at 350. Let cool overnight. The next morning, loosen the squash flesh like pasta and put in a big bowl. Scraping the inside of squash with a fork works well. Mix with about ¾ cup of grated cheese and return it to the skins like a filled cup. Fry out the sausage and add it to the top of each squash cup. Make an indention in each squash cup by using a spoon, and crack a whole egg in each. Add little blobs of cream cheese all over the top of each squash cup. Add a little bit more grated cheese to the top of each. Add a little salt and pepper to the top of each. Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes. The cheese should be melted and the eggs cooked but soft. Serve a squash half per person. Yum!
Bell's Best Berries http://bellsbestberries.com/
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Nutrition for Kids is Critical

grant2

A few years ago, I read the book Deep Nutrition: Why Your Genes Need Traditional Food by Catherine Shanahan, MD .  This was one of the most interesting and influential books I have read.   Dr.  Shanahan gives a powerful description of how the foods we eat (nutrition) directly effect gene expression, appearance, and degenerative diseases of both ourselves and our children.  Much of what she presents correlates closely with the writings of Dr. Weston A. Price, in his book Nutrition and Physical Degeneration.  

The book begins by describing how nutrition impacts beauty.  It never occurred to me that facial structure and symmetry could be directly influenced by nutrition.  Dr. Shanahan offers a persuasive case for good facial and jaw structure, as well as symmetry, being directly influenced by nutrition, not only fed to the child, but also of the mother, dad, and even grandparents.  How my mom and I nourished our bodies directly influenced the lives, health, and appearance of my children.  Wow! Now that is a new concept!  

This book also goes far deeper than facial beauty.  It discusses the way what we eat impacts how our genes are expressed.  This gene expression is important to long-term health and preventing degenerative disease.  Is it possible that by eating healthy food I can keep the genes for Alzheimer’s disease from expressing themselves?  Could this also be true for some of the most common diseases of our society, such as diabetes and obesity?   This book convinced me that nutrition probably is one of the most importing things we can do to prevent these problems, even though they may have a strong genetic correlation.  

The four keys to good nutrition and health presented in this book are as follows.  They strongly correlate with Dr. Weston Price’s conclusions.  

  1. Grass fed meat on the bone
  2. Organ meats from grass fed animals
  3. Fermented and sprouted foods
  4. Fresh ingredients such as vegetables, fruits and herbs  

Sadly, our modern diet rarely includes these foods.  We are all too quick to get boneless/skinless meats.  Additionally, most people wouldn’t dream of eating healthy organ meats such as liver and kidney.  Most Americans don’t even know what sprouted or fermented foods are, much less want to eat them.  Lastly, although we know eating produce is one of the keys to good health, it often plays a minor role in our meals.

When I talk with families at the market or in our CSA, who are specifically searching out real food for their families, I can’t help but smile.  I know they are not only giving their families a good meal, they are changing the direction of their lives!  They are giving a huge gift to not only their children, but even their grandchildren who are not even born yet!  Maybe these kids, and even their kids (to come!) won’t suffer from the plethora of degenerative disease that seems to plague our society.  Maybe they will have normal weight, guts that work well, and clear minds.  Maybe they won’t have cancer. Maybe they won’t have diabetes.  All of these terrible problems have a thread of nutrition that run though them.  Only wish I had known sooner, so I could have taken better care of myself during my child bearing years, as well as fed my kids better.  It must be true that wisdom comes with age. 

Eat your veggies,

Robin 

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Plenty of Ways to Use Fresh Spring Mint!

chocolate mint

Mint is at its fresh best in the early spring.  We love putting it in our CSA bags and we also bring bags of it to the market.  It sells fast.  Mint is not an herb I grew up cooking with, so it is only in the past few years that I have been using it.  See what you think of my mint ideas.

 

  1. Chop some mint and garlic and add to plain Greek yogurt.  Finish with some salt and lemon. Use on any type of meat.
  2. Season lamb or chicken with mint, garlic, salt, and pepper before you roast it.  
  3. Slice up some fresh strawberries and add fresh whipped cream and slivers of thinly sliced mint.
  4. Put fresh mint in a big pitcher of filtered water.  Tastes great!
  5. Pour hot water over mint to make a tummy soothing tea.  
  6. Add mint to your juice or smoothie.  
  7. Add chopped mint to your salad for a fresh kick.
  8. Add mint to your slaw, along with some scallions and a squeeze of lime.
  9. Add mint and other chopped fresh herbs to rice or cauliflower rice.
  10. Make a mojito!

Mint is not only yummy; it is also good for you.  Mint has historically been used to soothe the stomach.  Mint also inhibits microbial growth and naturally freshens breath. Mint contains a phytonutrient, called perillyl alcohol, which in some studies has shown anticancer properties.  Mint has natural cooling properties.  Use it in a bath or foot soak!

 

Mint is not only tasty; it is also delicious.  Enjoy it this spring while it is growing lush and strong.  

Don’t forget to add herbs to your veggies!

Robin

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It’s Not About the Kale

kale salad

Last weekend, I sat down and thought about all the wonderful CSA members we have and tried to figure out why they joined a CSA.  I suspected it probably wasn’t the turnips or kale that lured them in.  After all, turnips aren’t the yummiest of all veggies and you can get them and kale at any grocery store these days.  The reasons are deeper.

I believe the main reason people join a CSA is because they truly care about their health and the health of their children, and a CSA is a great way to be sure your fridge is full of things that make you healthy.  Let me tell you about some of my discussions with members at Atherton Market last weekend.  One sweet young lady has trouble with her tummy.  She is committed to eating real food and healing her gut.  What a great reason!  I believe she will be successful with this and it will change her life and health.

Another beautiful young family of 3 (one is a baby) gets our biggest possible membership size.  When I questioned them about managing to get it all eaten in a week, I quickly realized these guys are pros!  They avoid processed foods and are successfully maintaining their vibrant health by cooking nearly all of their meals and making their own baby food.  I told them they are absolutely changing their health and the health of their children and even grandchildren with this commitment.  Don’t ever underestimate the value of deep nutrition and avoiding junk! The secret is not that they eat kale, it’s that they completely changed their lifestyle and it will impact the lives of others they love.  

Another friendly young woman and her cooking man are super fun to talk to, just to see what they cook every day!  They can take a big CSA bag and have that thing broken down into photo perfect meals in no time.  I’m pretty sure the reason they cook and eat these lovely meals is not because they are Instagram worthy.  It is because those beautiful meals are what give them their strong health and vitality!  Again, it is about their health and life.  

My last example is Katie and her beautiful baby, Lexie.  I’ve known Katie since she was pregnant and saw how careful she was with everything she ate.  Now that Lexie is toddling around, I have seen how well she nourishes her.  I know buying a bar or bag of something marketed to toddlers would be a whole lot easier than the trouble Katie goes to in order to nourish her family.  She does it because she loves them and is committed to their health.  As Lexie grows, she will be strong, healthy, and focused.  That is what good food does!

So you see, it isn’t about kale, or whatever the next “health crazed” veggie will be. It is about changing your life.  Real food supports your body and mind so they are healthy and can function the way they were designed. When our bodies function as they should, our bodies heal and protect.  CSA members are smart. They know that how they feel, how they think, and their overall health is directly related to the nutrition they put in their body (and the junk they don’t!).  I know that learning to cook the veggies in your CSA bag is not easy.  I know there are about a zillion things along the aisles of the grocery store that would be a lot easier.  I’m glad so many people understand that it is not just food.  It is their life and health, and what could be more important than that?!

Eat Your Veggies,

Robin

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