“The shared meal elevates eating from a mechanical process of fueling the body to a ritual of family and community, from the mere animal biology to an act of culture.” – Michael Pollan, author, journalist and professor at UC Berkeley
PRODUCER SPOTLIGHT: White Mountain Farm // Mosca, CO
The farm has been in the family since the 1930's. In the late 1970's and early 1980's, the main crops were organically grown wheat, alfalfa, and sheep. In 1984 we started experimenting with Quinoa and in 1987, White Mountain Farm was incorporated, named after Mount Blanca, and started growing certified organically grown Quinoa and potatoes, becoming the first large-scale Quinoa operation in North America. Since then we have added rye and a variety of vegetables to our rotation.
Over the past years we have been selecting the best tasting Quinoa and potatoes to offer our customers. Our goal is to offer good tasting, high quality Quinoa, potatoes, and mixed organic produce at reasonable prices.
Welcome back for round 2!
We are pleased to present you with Week 2 of your Summer CSA! We hope you enjoyed last week’s selection – weren’t those cherries delicious? And who knew that Sunflower Oil exists? As a quick note, we would like to highlight the importance of eating with the bioregional season; as you open your CSA and take stock of the beautiful inclusions, take a moment to appreciate that these are the foods the region is yielding at this moment. A cold, late Spring and the quick onset of a hot Summer was tough on crops across the state, and that translates to a more limited yield. This is neither good nor bad – it is simply a reflection of the natural season. Food for thought!
What’s in the Box this week?
Note: Each shareholder has two boxes, so you can either bring back your empty box before the next week’s box arrives, or you can exchange it while picking up the full one.
Featured Items of the Week: Onion Greens, Mint, and Quinoa
Paul Hawken’s new book, The Drawdown: the most comprehensive plan ever proposed to reverse global warming (2017. Hawken, P., ed., Penguin Books), discusses the significant impact the way we grow, transport, eat, and waste food have on carbon emission. The book even suggests changing our relationship with food might be one of the most effective action we can take (even more than installing solar panels on the roof!) to reverse global warming. Considering that, eating locally grown, agrochemical-free food of our bioregion seems more critically important than ever.
Chinese onion bread
Today we first focus on a part of vegetable that might be discarded unless it is coming directly from the growers; green leaves of the onions. We are quite fortunate — especially in this sudden hot weather after late frost that we had only about a month ago — to have this rush greens. They can be used in stir fries like scallions, but here is a recipe for Chinese onion bread adopted from a cook book, Beijing Mianshi, by Wu Wen.
Some years ago, a Moroccan friend showed me how to make Mint Tea in his tradition. He had a nice tea pot to which he poured tons of sugar and packed it with fresh mint. Then he poured hot water over and steeped it for a few minutes. Use less sugar if you prefer. Enjoying the vibrant green color of the mint while it is being steeped. Serve it hot or cold. Very refreshing either way!
A variation to the theme is to add lime juice and mix with crushed ice (and rum for some adults :) to make a drink very much like Mojito!
SLV Quinoa & Beet Salad
Do you happen to have some beets from last week? With the quinoa in the box this week, it’s time to make San Luis Valley’s signature Quinoa & Beet Salad.
First, a gentle reminder on cooking quinoa:
1) Wash well. People who do not like quinoa, often do not like the unique aroma. Washing quinoa well before cooking reduces the aroma. I wash quinoa changing water until the water is almost clear. Using a strainer to drain it makes it easier.
2) Cook in 1:2 ratio. For example, one cup of quinoa and two cups of water. This ratio gives quinoa nutty texture. Of course, you can adjust the amount of water to your liking.
3) Boil the water first. Add the washed and drained quinoa into boiling water. This also helps with the nutty-ness.
4) After adding the quinoa, bring it to boil and simmer till all the liquid is gone.
5) Fluff it when it is done.
Now for the salad:
- sunflower oil
- apple cider vinegar
- balsamic vinegar
- salt & pepper
- garlic (grated or crushed)
1. Roast/bake the beets
Place washed beets with skin on in a baking dish along with a few cloves of garlic.
Pour water for 1/3 to 1/2 inch deep. Cover with a foil. Bake at around 400F for 45min to 1hr, until a folk goes in easily. It’s better to overcook than undercook. Set it aside to cool. Then peel and cut into pieces.
2. Make the dressing
Mix all the ingredients for the dressing. You could marinate the garlic overnight to take away the sharpness.