Wednesday, January 11, 2017

It's a Whole New Season! Won't You Join Us?

"You were right about turmeric," he (my husband, whom I love dearly!) told me. "It's the new thing!" And cauliflower. Did you know that cauliflower is the new kale(It's a good thing we've been busy these past few years perfecting growing cauliflower). There have been a lot of food fads over the years:  Jello molds, Campbell soup casseroles (my mother had a treasured cookbook that was filled with these recipes), Tang (farewell John Glenn), fondue, Velveeta (who knew cheese could be so silky?), Cool Whip which made a mean "Watergate salad" (I didn't even know what "real" whipped cream was until I graduated high school), fat-free everything (who can ever forget Snack wells immortalized by Seinfeld?).  From Slim Jims to I Can't Believe It's Not Butter (believe it, it's not even close!), it's always something new.  That's what I like about vegetables.  They are so basic.  And so comforting. And so essential.  Even though there are vegetable fads (anyone remember the kalettes we grew?) and diet fads from Atkins to the Zone and now Ketogenic, there's not much disputing that eating vegetables are good for you!  And eating our vegetables, grown in the rich Black Dirt soil, are even better for you!

"The CSA has changed the way I eat."
"I would join your CSA just for the onions and garlic."
"I thought we ate a lot of vegetables until we joined your CSA."
"That's the best cauliflower I have ever eaten."
"You've spoiled me.  I can never eat lettuce out of a bag again."
"I couldn't believe it, my son asked for more kohlrabi."
"We had such a good time at the farm picking vegetables.  It was the best day of our summer."



Ch-ch-ch-changes for the new season -- because you asked!

The main reason that many people have not rejoined the CSA is "too many vegetables!"   So, unlike Mozart, we will be offering two different size shares this year: 

  • the "Standard" share (similar to past years) and 
  • a "Single" share. 
Also, starting this season, instead of offering a separate fruit share, we will be including fruit with both the Standard and Single shares. 

The Standard share will consist of 10-13 items of  vegetables, herbs & fruit and the Single share will consist of 5-8 items of vegetables, herbs & fruit.  It will still be primarily vegetables & herbs with some seasonal, local fruit such as strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, peaches, pears, plums, apples, cider, etc.

All members will be able to visit the farm for any or all of the Pick-Your-Owns. 


We will also continue to have several pickup locations in Northern New Jersey including:
  • Hawthorne
  • Franklin Lakes
  • Hillsdale (new this season!)
  • New Milford
  • Ramsey
  • Ridgefield
  • Ringwood
  • Teaneck
  • Weehawken
  • check the sign-up sheet on our website for the list of latest locations 
For a minimum of 10, we will gladly deliver to any location! 

The season will begin on Wednesday, June 7 until October 25.  There will be no pickup on Wednesday, August 2.

Hope you join us for 2017! Keep up with the farm on Facebook.

Albert, Lisa, Jacob & Tyler

P.S.  We will have an Open House on the farm on Saturday, May 20 from 10-noon.  Hope you can visit us and help bag some popcorn!

 P. P.S.
As most of you know, we cancelled the CSA for 2016 due to my mother's illness. Thanks to everyone for their understanding and support! It was a very difficult decision but in hindsight, I'm so glad that we did.  My mother passed away on November 6.  She was pretty strong and very lucid to the end.  Just two weeks before she died, I took her for a drive through farm country in Illinois. We were going to visit the cemetery in Eleroy where my father was buried but didn't make it that far.  Little did we know that in less than three weeks we would both be at the cemetery, she being carried by all 11 grandchildren to her final spot beside her husband under the old oak trees.  I miss her.



 

Monday, June 15, 2015

CSA Reminder: June 17, 2015

"Thanks! Everything was gorgeous and delicious. These were the most beautiful radishes I've ever seen. If there are more to come, include a radish green pesto recipe (w a bit of citrus and sugar) in your next email. It got a rave review from my 6 year old!! The greens were too beautiful to cook or compost!" ~ Amy B.

News from the Farm:  So far, so good...

Emails like the one from Amy make it all worthwhile!   Thank you!  So far, so good this season! 


Fruit Share Starts This Week!


It's been a good season (a few weeks here) for strawberries!  So far. And so good!  This week members who signed up for the fruit share will receive two quarts of hand-picked, hand-sorted strawberries.

Farm Visits

We're working on a schedule of events for farm visits.  In the past, we would send out emails when the crops were ready for picking but members have requested to have some dates in advance.  We're sure there will always be something to pick...even if it's just herbs!  We just won't be able to commit to pea(s)ce... 

Almost Raw Milk -- Ole Mother Hubbert

Rose from Ole Mother Hubbert was written in Mother Earth News with having one of the first new milk pasteurizers in the country. She has a herd of 50 Jersey cows and milks then twice a day.  Then processes the milk in the LiLi pasturizer and bottles it. (The milk is very creamy!)  And the closest thing to raw milk that you can buy legally!  (I think it's more risky these days selling raw milk than drugs!)  Plus, she has eggs from truly free-range chickens!  The flock of chickens was running all around the farm when I went to pick up the milk!

How to Eat Fermented Vegetables & Drink Bone Broth!

Even Scientific American is talking about gut microbiome, Really, my mental health depends on what's in my gut?  The best way to eat fermented vegetables (The Farmhouse Kitchen has awesome fermented veggies!) is to leave the jar on your table (and let it continue to ferment) and eat a tablespoon after every meal. (Very good for digestion!)  And sip a cup of bone broth throughout the day.  For more serious conditions, drink three cups per day. (Linda of AuBrothier said she noticed a huge difference in the quality of the broth after getting bones from Lowland Farm!)  The next frontier is fecal transplants!  I kid you not...I'm planning on saving this for some Thanksgiving Dinner conversation along with Brussels sprouts, sage & Long Island cheesepumpkins.

Don't forget:  you can place your order for grass-fed meat directly with
Lowland Farm and it will be ready for you to pick up in Hawthorne!  And you don't have to be a CSA member to order!
VegetablesBoston lettuce
romaine lettuce
red leaf lettuce
spinach
radishes
Swiss chard - red
arugula
greenhouse tomatoes
red potatoes

Fruit
2 quarts of strawberries

Recipes
Radish Green  Pesto (Thanks Amy!)Swiss chard recipes
Swiss chard ribs with cream & pasta
Arugula corn salad with bacon
Asian lettuce wraps
Strawberry & spinach salad
Radish butter
Red leaf lettuce with shallot vinaigrette

Vendors at HawthorneThe Farmhouse Kitchen  - sauerkraut, kimchee, fermented vegetablesMoGreen Juice -- freshly pressed juice
AuBrothier -- bone broth


 Available for Sale
Ole' Mother Hubbert Milk
pastured & organic eggs
local raw honey
Amish hand-rolled butter
Lowland Farm grass-fed meat (order directly and it will be delivered to Hawthorne)
Natural Harvest pickles -- sweet horseradish & half sour

Enjoy!




















Tuesday, June 9, 2015

CSA Reminder: First Pickup Wednesday, June 10

June 8, 2015


"All human actions have one or more of these seven causes: chance, nature, compulsions, habit, reason, passion, desire." ~ Aristotle
News from the Farm:  Welcome to Our Seventh (Heaven) Season Hi Everyone,
It's hard to believe that we are beginning our
seventh season!  Wow, seven....s
cholars say it denotes completeness or perfection.  We're aiming for both!  
I was in the attic looking through all the CSA boxes for a receipt for a piece of equipment we bought some years back and it really hit me, seven years!  (I have saved every hand-written envelope addressed to Hesperides Organica!)  Some day my kids will have to sort out all my belongings and I hope they will be charmed by these boxes of inked envelopes.  Or, they'll just throw them into a big heap and burn them shaking their heads at their eccentric mother. 



Oh, well.  One thing they won't be able to complain about is having enough vegetables to eat!

Information  for the first pickup:

Hawthorne -- 27 Utter Avenue (garage door on side of building will be open) 
Hours:  2-7 pm 
Bring a canvas bag!  The vegetable shares will be in a black plastic crate in the walk-in cooler.  Don't forget to check off name on sign in sheet.  Also, we have a new little store with local items -- eggs, butter, milk, honey, etc.

Ramsey -- 70 E. Main Street, Baked in a Cup
Hours:  1-6 pm
Check off name on sign in sheet.  The girls behind the counter will help you get your share.  Take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the green canvas bag.
New Milford -- 685 Princeton Street 
Hours: 1-8 pm
Check off name on sign in sheet.  Shares will be lined up on the right side of the house in soft coolers.  Please take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the coolers!
Teaneck -- 615 George Street
Hours: 1-8 pm  
Check off name on sign in sheet.  Shares will be lined up inside the garage in soft coolers.  Please take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the coolers!

Franklin Lakes -- 799 Franklin Avenue, Kara Kakes (located in strip mall)

Hours:  1-6 pm
Check off name on sign in sheet.  The girls behind the counter will help you get your share.  Please take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the green canvas bag.
Ridgefield -- 705 Center Street
Hours: 1-8 pm

Check off name on sign in sheet. Shares will be lined up in soft coolers. Please take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the coolers!
Weehawken -- 2502 Palisade Avenue, Gypsy Yogis Yoga Studio/Creative Space
Hours:  1-8 pm

Check off name on sign in sheet.  Please take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the green canvas bag.  Next week members will be able to order eggs, milk, butter, etc.  More information to come.
Pelham -- 451 Esplanade, Pelham Jewish Center
4:30-6:30 pm
Check off name on sign in sheet.  Shares will be black stacked plastic crates.  Please take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the crates.

Reminders:  
  

  • Call Jacob at 845-490-1201 at any time if you have any questions regarding picking up your vegetables.  On pickup days, we are not readily accessible by email so take a minute and put his number into your phone!
  • Fruit Share will start in a few weeks...more information to come.
  • Anyone can sign up to the weekly newsletter which will be sent on Mondays with a list of vegetables for the week and news from the farm.  There's a link on the main page of our website www.hesperidesorganica.com
  • A copy of the weekly emails are also posted on our blog: http://hesperidescsa.blogspot.com/
  • Keep up with us on Facebook

Enjoy!

Lisa & Albert & Jacob & Tyler

P.S.  We still have vegetable shares available! Even though the season has begun, people can still sign up!

P.P.S. Fruit shares sold out!

 
Vegetables
romaine lettuce
leaf lettuce
spinach
radishes
cilantro
arugula
dill
greenhouse tomatoes
Yukon gold potatoes

Recipes
Potato Salad with Dill & Arugula
Radish Greens Recipes
Cilantro Lime Pesto
Radish Salad with Mint & Pistachios
Preserving Dill

My favorite way to eat cilantro recipe:

1 cup cashew nuts (or any nut)
1 bunch of cilantro (stems included)
4 garlic cloves
1/4 cup oil
2 T. soy (or Tamari) sauce
2 t. brown sugar
1 T. lime juice
1 jalapeno pepper (seeded -- I usually don't add)
2 T. water

Blend all in a food processor.  Add water to desired consistency.  I like it thick.  Eat with a spoon!  Or enjoy over chicken, beef, pork or pasta.  Freezes very well!

 
Vendors at Hawthorne
The Farmhouse Kitchen  - sauerkraut, kimchee, fermented vegetablesMoGreen Juice -- freshly pressed juice
AuBrothier -- bone broth


 Available for Sale

Ole' Mother Hubbert Milk
pastured & organic eggs
local raw honey
Amish hand-rolled butter
Lowland Farm grass-fed meat (order directly and it will be delivered to Hawthorne)

It's all about the food!



 









Welcome to 2015 CSA

June 4, 2015


News from the Farm:  Welcome to 2015 CSA
We are very excited to begin again!  Thanks to everyone who joined for the season.  It's great to see so many returning members as well as new ones. 

The first pickup is Wednesday, June 10.  Here are the details for the specific locations:

Hawthorne -- 27 Utter Avenue (garage door on side of building will be open) 
Hours:  2-7 pm 
Bring a canvas bag!  The vegetable shares will be in a black plastic crate in the walk-in cooler.  Don't forget to check off name on sign in sheet.  Also, we have a new little store with local items -- eggs, butter, milk, honey, etc.

Ramsey -- 70 E. Main Street, Baked in a Cup
Hours:  1-6 pm
Check off name on sign in sheet.  The girls behind the counter will help you get your share.  Take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the green canvas bag.

New Milford -- 685 Princeton Street 
Hours: 1-8 pm

Check off name on sign in sheet.  Shares will be lined up on the right side of the house in soft coolers.  Please take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the coolers!
Teaneck -- 615 George Street
Hours: 1-8 pm  

Check off name on sign in sheet.  Shares will be lined up inside the garage in soft coolers.  Please take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the coolers!

Franklin Lakes -- 799 Franklin Avenue, Kara Kakes (located in strip mall)

Hours:  1-6 pm
Check off name on sign in sheet.  The girls behind the counter will help you get your share.  Please take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the green canvas bag.
Ridgefield -- 705 Center Street
Hours: 1-8 pm

Check off name on sign in sheet. Shares will be lined up in soft coolers. Please take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the coolers!




Weehawken -- 2502 Palisade Avenue, Gypsy Yogis Yoga Studio/Creative Space
Hours:  1-8 pm
Check off name on sign in sheet.  Please take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the green canvas bag.
Pelham -- 451 Esplanade, Pelham Jewish Center
4:30-6:30 pm

Check off name on sign in sheet.  Shares will be black stacked plastic crates.  Please take the plastic bags of vegetables and leave the crates.

Reminders:  
  • Call Jacob at 845-490-1201 at any time if you have any questions regarding picking up your vegetables.  On pickup days, we are not readily accessible by email so take a minute and put his number into your phone!
  • Fruit Share will start in a few weeks...more information to come.
  • Anyone can sign up to the weekly newsletter which will be sent on Mondays with a list of vegetables for the week and news from the farm.  There's a link on the main page of our website www.hesperidesorganica.com
  • A copy of the weekly emails are also posted on our blog: http://hesperidescsa.blogspot.com/
  • Keep up with us on Facebook
     

Enjoy!

Lisa & Albert & Jacob & Tyler


P.S.  We still have vegetable shares available! (Just five more fruit shares slots!)





Monday, June 1, 2015

Time to Eat Well

May 22, 2015


"I have made a lot of mistakes falling in love, and regretted most of them, but never the potatoes that went with them.  ~Nora Ephron
  



News from the Farm: It's Not Called Stinging Nettles for No Reason

It stings. It really does. Painfully so.  For hours afterwards. The New Land...is full of nettles & mettles.  Why did I sell my original acres again? 

I remember the thistle. In the beginning. Even from Illinois when my parents first bought their farm. My mother wanted to call it Thistle Down Farm (I think it was wishful thinking on her part). I can't even remember what they named it.  Fortunately, or unfortunately, my husband let me name our farm on my first whim, Hesperides Organica.   It sounded so great until an insurance policy came in as "Herpes Itis."  
 Very humbling to say the least! (Nature has a way of putting me in my place!).

But it didn't even matter.  Herpes be damned!  I had more immediate needs to attend to. Weeds.  Especially thistle.  It was coming up everywhere that first year. In every field.  I was ready to do battle until a friend of mine stopped by and casually told me of a story of a friend of his who too had thistle but didn't resist it.  He understood that the thistle was there for a purpose.  To protect the land while it was being neglected.  Not loved. Ah, I'm getting it. Finally...

It still wasn't easy.  It took a lot of tilling (loving) and killing the roots (negative thoughts and intentions) and persistence (just show up and join the CSA even if you doubt you can eat all the vegetables we have to offer!) and faith (most of all!).

But you know, it didn't take too long and the thistle wasn't even an issue.  In fact, I can't even remember it except abstractly.  The fields healed so perfectly.  It was like they (the fields and plants) wanted to please us.  To work with us. To produce the most hearty vegetables possible.  And they did!   And they let us Pick-(Y)our-Own vegetables.

Now, it's back to square one. Well, maybe four.  Fields.  And a new weed.  This time nettles.  Stinging nettles.  I know they are a great weed.  Nutritious.  Medicinal.  Tea worthy.  But very touchy. And so, I walk these new fields every day. Early in the morning and late at night.  Back and forth. Back and forth. Listening. Very closely! To their whispers.
To what they have to teach me! (The other day I fell down and got a huge bruise on my thigh!) This New Land is not so gentle or patient! 

It's time to wake up!  It's not a game anymore. And at the very least, we need to feed our bodies well.


Enjoy!

Lisa & Albert & Jacob & Tyler

P.S.  Two new Pickup Locations:  Teaneck and Ridgefield.   The 2015 form is on the website.  It's not too late to sign up! 

P.P.S. We're going to have a set schedule this year for Pick-Your-Own & Farm Visits: (we'll always have something to pick...just don't know exactly what right now!) but will post the dates soon.


Keep up with us on Facebook.  

  


Three More Weeks!

May 19, 2015


"I had to live in the desert before I could understand the full value of grass in a green ditch." ~ Ella Maillart




News from the Farm: It's Always More than I Think

And takes more time than I'd like. We were on quite a roll with the New Land until the ditcher (this is the guy who cleans out the ditches, in case you're wondering) came.  There's an entire culture of ditches in the Black Dirt.  Ditching is what made farming the land possible.  Otherwise, it was referred to as the Drowned Lands.  What's so amazing to me is how the early immigrants (Irish, Polish & German) knew the value of the dirt under the water; how they hand-dug the ditches (there is one ditch that is nearly two miles long that is called, by some old-timers here, the Irish Ditch, because is was dug by 50 Irishmen who were paid $1 a day) and how they were able to dig all those ditches and drain the proper way (it all needs to drain to the lowest point to eventually drain into the Wallkill River which runs north...one of 30 in the United States).

Now, instead of shovels, the ditchers have equipment.  And horsepower (always a good thing!)  Over the years, we have worked with four different ditchers who have four different styles, four different pieces of equipment and four different ways of charging.

Ditcher #1:  Let's call him "A"...he has his own equipment and his own guys and knows a novice (aka sucker) when he sees one.  Cha-ching This cost a lot!

Ditcher #2:  A really nice guy.  Great piece of equipment.  But we were geographically undesirable.  And he suffered a stroke.

Ditcher #3:  Another really nice guy.  The Mighty Midget as he is called affectionately by everyone who knows him.  He had a snowmobile accident and was paralyzed from the waist down but still manages to drive a truck and bring his purple excavator to the fields to clean the ditches.  And he really knows how to clean them!  We  surprisingly ran into him at the boat show in New York City the week after he ditched for us.
Boating must be a great way to feel free!


Ditcher #4:  Another really nice guy (see? based on my experiences with ditchers, a very small minority, means a very large majority  3/4 of the population is great! In fact, I think most people are!) And his wife was too.  She would drive him over, drop him off, bring him lunch and a snack and collect the check for payment (and he gladly let her).  He was a little late getting there that day when he ditched for us because he was helping his wife...she had found someone giving away sheetrock; something she thought would be great to have to build some more space for more relatives to visit "The Homestead" (the home her grandfather had built and she had lovingly restored). He worked late into the night that night. He had a great piece of equipment; an excavator with a six-foot bucket that he drove like my 90-year old aunt drove her Jazzy Scooter (seeing it bounce on the parking lot made me so grateful that we chose the storage containers over building a barn...sometimes, always, you need to obey the Laws of Nature!) and he was reasonable and geographically desirable. 

A match made in the Black Dirt. 

We are looking forward to many more!  Won't you join us?  For possibly the best vegetables from the best soil...and we are geographically desirable. 


Enjoy!

Lisa & Albert & Jacob & Tyler

P.S.  Two new Pickup Locations:  Teaneck and Ridgefield.   The 2015 form is on the website.

P.P.S.  Pelham will be having a Block Party on June 6 to sign up members for 2015 CSA.  See website.


Keep up with us on Facebook.  

Real Things

May 13, 2015


"Character is like a tree and reputation like a shadow. The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing." ~ Abraham Lincoln

News from the Farm: It's Cold, It's Wet, It's Hot, It's Dry

Why am I always complaining?

Because I'm a farmer and it's what we do!  Not complain, necessarily, but we always know that it can all be over in a second, with a few inches of hail or a flood or (a groundhog...sigh!)  or an untimely frost, either late in the early season or early in the late season. (Or a local ordinance. Another story!)  Sheet!

I never used to even notice the "weather."  (Or ordinances). It was just an abstract thought unless we were planning a camping trip (I highly recommend this...inexpensive "vacation" ...especially to anyone who has kids 12 years or younger...if you haven't dragged them out to the woods by then, it's probably too late. They will be way too attached to their screens.  In this case, you need a severe (cross-country) road trip without any technology including a GPS. Think Rand-McNally road map! Lots of wrong turns. And a whole lotta faith!).

It's so worth it. To worry about the "weather." (And ordinances. And freedom). Whether you're farming, camping, rock climbing, hiking, planning a road-trip or surfing or just living in a town.  

Just notice it!
  Let's get out of our climate-controlled homes, cars, trains, office buildings and coffee houses and "towns" and look up and see the stars.  And clouds.  And feel the rain on our faces and the mud below our feet. Be a little uncomfortable.  Even if it means more vegetables than you know what to do with! And delivering vegetables...unto...in spite of... ordinances.

Hey, I'm game, are you 

Join us this season!  As one of our members said, "It's the most real thing I do all week!"


Enjoy!

Lisa & Albert & Jacob & Tyler

P.S. The 2015 form is on the website.


Keep up with us on Facebook.