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Waverly Farms CSA 8/17/17 Weekly and Bi-Weekly Members

Posted 8/17/2017 7:24am by Patti Rosenberg.

Waverly Farms, LC

Dear Members,

Growing everything that you and we want to eat is impossible. But we've found an online farmers' market that offers the products of local farms and local small businesses who cater to the conscious eater. We thought you should know about it.

LuLu's Local Foods is the technology behind two local online farmers' market that we've been experimenting with both as a farmer and a family. Over 20 local farms and other businesses who cater to the conscious eater offer products for sale online. Customers can order from Friday Noon - Monday midnight and receive their goods on Thursdays at convenient pick-up locations throughout the Richmond metroplex and Southside Virginia. For a $50 annual fee, customers have access to over 500 different products each week. 

For our farm, it's a great way to sell our excess products. For our family, it's a great way to supplement our CSA share with other locally grown, baked and prepared food. I'm mostly very satisfied with the quality of the products sold. Most suppliers of this online effort are sustainable farmers who grow without chemicals and harvest the day before delivery. You have to do your own vetting of the farms because there is variation in growing practices and quality. But everything is guaranteed for customer satisfaction. When the occasional bad product arrives, which it has, I just call the manager of the online market and they immediately refund my money. As I've gotten to know which farms produce high quality and which ones struggle, my satisfaction rate has soared. We have enjoyed delicious, fresh greens from Broadfork Farm (a greens-only farm). The seedless watermelon from Deer Run Farm was amazing (ours didn't make it this year). I've tried fresh chicken from several farms and ordered baked goods for entertaining. When I can remember to order between Noon Friday and Midnight Monday, we are much happier with our purchases from our online farmer's market than we are from the local grocery store. 

The Center for Rural Culture, a non-profit organization that promotes local farmers and locally-produced products, is the organization that sponsors these online farmers' markets. This is not a new effort, they've been working out the kinks for years, and continue to improve and add pick-up locations. Our CSA will consciously align with their locations for your convenience. Unfortunately, they do not do home delivery. You might check them out. Depending upon where you live, there are two:

As a farmer, I love that they can do this magic and only take 6% of the price (vs. 50% from for-profit online markets and box meals). I also feel more relaxed if we can't grow something knowing that it's out there and available to us and our customers. The harvest and filling of orders fits right into our normal CSA harvest, packing and delivery schedule, unlike sitting at farmer's markets on Saturdays, which turns a 7 day week into an 8 day week and burns us out.

As with all local purchases, it's a little inconvenient to have to order within a short window of time and remember to pick up on Thursdays, but our family loves fresh food and supporting local producers. The flavors and quality of  the products, the expanded variety of local food in our home, and the satisfaction of supporting local farms and small businesses have been worth the effort. 

We're not trying to push you away form our CSA. We need and appreciate your support! The CSA model is critical to support the salaries of our workers. CSA members will always receive our first choice and top quality. But, we thought you should also know about these online markets because they are good for you, good for farmers, and especially good for our community. 

CSA Shares this Week - Weekly and Bi-Weekly Members
We are loading you down this week with summer veggies. 

Sweet Peppers - the peppers finally decided to grow into stuffing size, so we've included hamburger and sausage for meat lovers who want Stuffed Green Peppers this week. For those who prefer meatless, all 21 of these recipes for Veggie Stuffed Peppers look amazing! Remember that you can always roast or grill peppers, too, by coating them with olive oil, seasoning with salt and pepper and either cooking on the grill with skewers or a veggie basket, or on a baking sheet in a preheated oven at 400 degrees until tender.

Yellow Squash - Forget mushy, watery squash, Grilled Yellow Squash is a good choice for those who want a firm, savory dish. Cheesy Squash Casserole takes it to another planet. It is out of this world. 

Eggplant - I cannot believe that these eggplants continue to grow well. They remind me that nature, not I decide what will and won't grow each year. This is a good year for eggplant. We included several this week so you could do some of the recipes that fewer don't allow. So here you go... my favorite 10 Healthy Eggplant Recipes. Fabulous! 

Cucumbers - I know it's a lot, but they won't last long so enjoy them. You have enough this week to make this amazing Cold Cucumber Soup. This delicious Marinated Cucumber, Onion and Tomato Salad is a great way to enjoy them. Pickling them is easier than you think. It's time to try Homemade Refrigerator Pickles for sweet pickles or if you prefer savory and salty, Dill Pickles is a good choice. If you have a spiralizer, or want an excuse to buy one, you'll love this beautiful Cucumber Caprese Salad. Or just slice them into ice cold Cucumber Water for rehydration and detox. 

Slicing Tomatoes - best when eaten. Just slice and eat them or throw them into any of the salads above. Or indulge yourself with a tomato sandwich or BLT, mayo and all. We couldn't send as many this week because the rain caused them to split, but they'll be back.

Garlic - If you've accumulated garlic and want to mince it for easy use for months try this primer for How to Make Minced Garlic at Home that Lasts for Weeks.    

Pepper Relish - This is fabulous on pork chops, hot dogs, bratwurst, all of the things in your Protein Share this week. It's also terrific for a topping or even to cook into a dish for extra seasoning. We canned this last summer, so open it now, taste it, and your imagination will take you away to so many uses. It will keep unopened on your shelf for a while longer, or in the refrigerator for several weeks. 

Protein Shares - Weekly and Bi-Weekly Members

Pork Hotdogs and Bratwurst - Yes! Our new butcher makes pork hotdogs for us without nitrates or other potentially harmful preservatives. They are ridiculously expensive at $3/lb just for the butchering cost, so we won't have many. They are also salty, so probably best boiled in water and put on a bun with your favorite toppings, including our Pepper Relish. You could grill them, but they're a bit thin and grilling concentrates the salt even more. Bratwurst is better on the grill. 

Pork Chops - Just a few for the grill or Pan Grill them. Try them for breakfast with eggs and sliced tomatoes! You'll feel like you're on the farm. 

Beef Burger and Pork Sausage - Blend these two meats for stuffed peppers (recipe above) and use the rest for the best hamburgers you'll ever make. Sliced tomatoes and cucumbers would be amazing on these "hamburgers". These ground meats are also amazing in tacos and spaghetti sauce for a robust easy meal. Even better in Classic Beef and Sausage Meatloaf.  

Enjoy!

Stuart and Patti Rosenberg and all of your friends at
Waverly Farms, LC
2345 Lewiston Plank Rd.
Burkeville, VA 23922
www.waverlyfarmsvirginia.com
214-914-0323 (Patti's cell)
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