Week 12 Veggie Lovers Club Newsletter

Hi Veggie Lovers!

Pickup is:

  • Tuesday September 22 from 4:00 – 6:00 pm at Stanley Park in Brandon (14th Street between Princess Ave. and Lorne Ave. *Please avoid parking on the East side of 14th Street whenever possible to allow space for residents*)
  • Wednesday September 23 from 6:00 – 7:00 pm in Riverdale Community Centre (Rink) West Parking lot, Main Street, Rivers. (Under the shady tree!)

This is Week 12!  If you are in our summer program, pickups continue until Week 14, October 6 & 7. 

Our 24 week program continues until December 15th and it is full.

**If you have any canning jars or screw bands that you would like to return, please do! The stores have run out of jars and Mom is stalled on canning. Specifically in need of the 500 ml/pint size and screw bands for that size!

We will also happily take back the jars & screw bands from the Refrigerator Pickles when you are done with them!

I sent out the 2020 VLC Survey this Saturday, so please watch for that email and give us your feedback if possible. Member feedback is very important to us and helps to shape our future programs! I’ll send out a reminder follow-up to anyone who hasn’t completed it by next week.


Place a Pre-Order to come with your red bag this week:

You can place an order to come with your red bag this week! Find the order form link in the email you received Saturday morning. There is no Friday pickup option this week.

We’re taking some space the next couple weeks to finish up the harvest and assess inventory before we sell any more produce outside of the CSA membership. We will have one last Friday pickup on Friday October 9th just before Thanksgiving. Most of our remaining produce for the season is reserved for our CSA members– you!


Spoiler Alert: If you would like to keep your bag contents a surprise, you’d better STOP READING NOW!!

The contents of the upcoming week’s bag are subject to change at the last minute, possibly without much notice, depending on harvest. It can be tough for us to estimate how much of a crop will be available before we actually harvest it freshly for your bag.  So, this posting is meant to give you a good idea of what is in your bag, but just be aware that it may change and we will do our best to let you know if that happens!  At the very least, this posting will be updated prior to delivery with the actual contents for the week, so that you can check that you’ve received everything you are supposed to! (and please do check!)

Your Week 12 Veggie Lovers’ Club bag contains:

Last week’s bag

Tomatoes, ripening quart
Celeriac, 1
Bunched Carrots
Delicata Squash, 1
Onions, Yellow Storage 2 lbs

You can click the links on the items above to view more info about each veggie including recipe & preparation suggestions, season, storage tips, and lots more!

Don’t forget to bookmark our online Veggie Guide so all the veggie info is at your fingertips!


More info & Farm Update:

…will be updated with your pickup reminder, check back soon!

Teri’s “Better than Butternut” Winter Squash Guide

We don’t grow Butternut Squash. Most years our season isn’t long enough for them to reliably reach maturity, also they are large, prone to hail damage, and produce few marketable fruits per foot compared to other varieties. There are heaps of other varieties of squash that are more flavourful and versatile than Butternut Squash, but it remains the standard in many recipes, and is often the one people ask for. We dropped it from our production years ago and I don’t miss it one bit because the varieties we grow are better suited for what we do than Butternut!

I find that people tend to over complicate things when they talk about squash.  It’s really just a big mature cucumber in different shapes!!  (literally, they are in the same family!). In my mind, there are 3 types of squash: Big mushy ones for soup and baking, smaller specialty ones for roasting, and stringy Spaghetti Squash. Big distinctions between varieties can’t be made because I’ve seen bigger differences within the same variety depending on what time in the season you eat it.  Directly after harvest they are starchy and less sweet.  Over time they become sweeter and less starchy, which means the flesh behaves differently when you cook it, depending on the season. 

In the “Big Mushy Ones” category you’ll find Kabocha (Sunshine and Winter Sweet), Buttercup, Pie Pumpkins, and Pink Banana. These are your best choice for soups, pies, baking, etc. They have dense, sweet, uniform flesh that is easily roasted or baked.

The second category includes small ones like Acorn, Honeynut and Delicata, that you typically would just eat as a squash rather than using the flesh to bake or soup with because of the size and shape (because who wants to peel an acorn squash?!).

Then there’s Spaghetti, in a class of it’s own (except if you decide to eat a Jack o Lantern pumpkin). Stringy and unique!

Season: Winter Squash is ready in late August and goes until at least Christmas.

Storage Tips: SQUASH DOES NOT GO IN THE FRIDGE!!

That’s big and bold because it’s a very, very common mistake. When you store whole squash in the fridge or root cellar, it rots. I’ve seen many farmers make the same mistake storing their squash crop in cold storage. We cure ours for at least 3 weeks in the warm greenhouse before lugging it upstairs in the shed to store for winter.

Keep your squash in your kitchen, or a nice cozy room in your house. They’re beautiful enough you can gaze at it a while before eating it! It’s ideal storage temperature is around 10*C, but as most people (including us) don’t have somewhere with that as a constant, having it warmer is preferable to cooler. Once cut, squash does go in the fridge, and cut squash has a very short shelf life of 3 – 5 days, so eat it up quickly once you start. You can peel, cube, steam, and freeze it if you’re not going to eat it all at once, or just make a big pot of soup and then freeze that.

Preparation Tips:
Use caution when cutting open squash. Make sure you start with a good, sharp knife and flat edge when possible. You can remove the stem easily by whacking it on the edge of a counter or with the back of a knife, which is much safer than cutting it off.


BIG MUSHY SOUP SQUASHES:

Sunshine Kabocha – Orange skin and flesh. Lots of meaty flesh, well suited for soups and baking. Sweet and dense. Makes the best thick squash soup when cooked early in the season just after harvest.

Winter Sweet Kabocha– Grey skin and orange flesh. Longest keeper. Lots of meaty flesh, well suited for soups and baking. Sweet and dense.

Buttercup – Green skin, yellow flesh. Very sweet and can be dry depending on how you cook it. Great for baking or soups as well as fresh eating.

Pie Pumpkins – We grew a variety with hull less seeds this year as well as a standard Pie Pumpkin. Generally pumpkin is more moist than other squashes and so it is well suited to baking, cooking, and pumpkin spice lattes!

ROASTING SQUASHES:

Delicata Squash – Oblong yellow striped skin with thin, not-too-sweet pale flesh that darkens to orange as it stores. The skin is thin and edible which makes this squash easy to use and well suited to roasting, stuffing, baking or frying.

Celebration Acorn Squash – This is a new variety for us this year. We switched to it as we haven’t been happy with the production nor the storage of our green Acorn squash the past few years. It is supposed to have the best flavour of any Acorn squash and has white skin flecked with orange and green and light yellow fine-grained flesh.

Honeynut Squash: The solution to Butternut. This is the smaller, sweeter version. They are only a pound or two each and require curing after harvest to sweeten. The green skin eventually turns dusty orange by Christmas and the flesh is orange as well. Sweet and dense and versatile for soups, roasting, baking, or any purpose!

STRINGY SQUASH:

Spaghetti Squash: This one is popular and well known so I don’t have to say anything about it in order for you to buy it. Which is good because I don’t prefer it, so don’t have anything particularly enticing to say about it… And I am still amazed at the people who hear me say this and feel the need to tell me all about how they add tomato sauce to it and it’s just like spaghetti. (I get it, I just think it’s bland and flavourless. HUGE eye roll!)



I’m having major internet and WordPress issues today so I’m quitting before it becomes necessary to heave my computer out the window, because it’s getting close. Planning to revist this and add my favourite Squash Recipes soon if I can get it to work. Check out the Recipes page on our site for now. (I would add a link but every time I do the whole thing crashes this morning, so you’ll have to self serve!)

Week 11 Veggie Lovers Club Newsletter

Hi Veggie Lovers!

Pickup is:

  • Tuesday September 15th from 4:00 – 6:00 pm at Stanley Park in Brandon (14th Street between Princess Ave. and Lorne Ave. *Please avoid parking on the East side of 14th Street whenever possible to allow space for residents*)
  • Wednesday September 16th from 6:00 – 7:00 pm in Riverdale Community Centre (Rink) West Parking lot, Main Street, Rivers. (Under the shady tree!)

This is Week 11!  If you are in our summer program, pickups continue until Week 14, October 6 & 7.  Our 24 week program continues until December 15th.  If you would like to extend your summer program please be in touch with me right away as spaces are limited this year!


Additional Pre-Order Options this week!

You can place an order from:

the Pre-Order Form (pickup with your bag on Tuesday or Wednesday) AND/OR

the Friday Pickup Form (pickup Fridays 3 – 5 pm in The Green Spot parking lot).

The selection on the Friday list is much wider than the Pre-Order Form because we have much more time available to devote to harvesting and packing your orders for that day.  We can accommodate some VLC bag pickups on that day too, so if you can’t make it Tuesday or Wednesday that is another option – let us know the day before your pickup if you want to do this!

Links to both order forms are provided in the email you received on Saturday morning.


Spoiler Alert: If you would like to keep your bag contents a surprise, you’d better STOP READING NOW!!

The contents of the upcoming week’s bag are subject to change at the last minute, possibly without much notice, depending on harvest. It can be tough for us to estimate how much of a crop will be available before we actually harvest it freshly for your bag.  So, this posting is meant to give you a good idea of what is in your bag, but just be aware that it may change and we will do our best to let you know if that happens!  At the very least, this posting will be updated prior to delivery with the actual contents for the week, so that you can check that you’ve received everything you are supposed to! (and please do check!)

Your Week 11 Veggie Lovers’ Club bag contains:

Last week’s bag!

Celebration Acorn Squash, 1
Green Peppers, 2 – 3
Refrigerator Pickles, 250 ml
Red Bunched Beets with greens
Tri Color Fingerling Potatoes (Red, Yellow, and Blue) 1.5 lbs
Cucumber, 1-2

You can click the links on the items above to view more info about each veggie including recipe & preparation suggestions, season, storage tips, and lots more!

Don’t forget to bookmark our online Veggie Guide so all the veggie info is at your fingertips!


About your Veggies & Farm Update!

Stuffed Celebration Acorn Squash last night!

We tried the Celebration Acorn Squash last night and it is delicious!

I like to cut it in half, scoop out the seeds and roast it cut side down in a bit of water for about 30 minutes. Then I flip it over and stuff it with something yummy and buttery: tonight was buttered leeks with prunes and thyme. Jon and I eat the skin on most of the squash and this one is still very tender and edible.I really think you’ll enjoy this one, Veggie Lovers!

Peppers were picked ahead of the frost last week and so we are sending out a big portion this week as they don’t store forever! This will be it for the year.

Also in very limited supply: Tri-color Fingerling Potatoes. We harvested all of them and then divided the harvest by 101 bags. So you’re all getting about 1-1/2 lbs of potatoes this week, and they are gorgeous! They are all the same color on the inside as the outside, so yes, the Red ones are Red inside and the Blue ones are Blue inside. And the yellow ones are YELLOW inside (I know, not nearly as exciting as the other two, right?!). They are pretty fun.

Keep the Refrigerator pickles in the fridge!

This week in your bag is last of the cucumbers, too! What a great season it was for them.

We were planning to send you a bag of rainbow colored beets this week but then Jon was talking about how beautiful the tops were on the red beets in the row that we hadn’t touched yet, so we are sending those instead and the rainbow beets are slated for Week 13.

We have most of the remainder of the CSA mapped out now and will be stopping our Friday pickups very soon as we are pretty much sold out other than some squash, tomatoes, and beets. The rest is for the 24-week members! And if you’re not one and want to be, let me know sooner rather than later as we have a firm cap this year: We won’t be able to accommodate regular weekly ordering this year from past members, either. 24 Week members will have access to all of our remaining produce and then if we have anything left in December we’ll be in touch (first to our 14-week members).

I didn’t receive any soup recipes from any members this week to share! I also didn’t hear who got the Chez Angela gift card for the past 2 weeks, but it’s still been going randomly in one of the bags every week.

Some recipes:

Here’s a recipe for a Herb-Roasted Parmesan Acorn Squash. No matter what you put on it, cutting the squash like they have in this recipe is a really nice way to prepare it!

The classic way to prepare Acorn Squash – Baked with butter and brown sugar

Quinoa-stuffed Acorn Squash Recipe – We have lots of great locally available grains to experiment with, Quinoa is a favourite of ours and goes great as a squash stuffing!

Judi shared this recipe and said it’s really great! I haven’t tried it yet but the recipes Judi shares are always worth trying!

Also, I published a Winter Squash Guide on the weekend which has more info about the different varieties we grew this year, if you’re interested you can find it here!


Veggie Lover Pick of the Week!
Each week I’ve been featuring one of our Veggie Lovers so we can all get to know each other better!  Feel welcome to nominate someone, including yourself if you’d like to be featured!

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Meet Stephanie Chow!


Who else is in your household of veggie lovin’ eaters? There is Benson, my husband. Then Sadie, Samson, John-Richmond (we call him JR) and Bobo are great dane who loves your carrots, the other two puppers spit the veggies out.
Veggie Lover Since: The summer before you started the CSA (I think) you guys had a table at the Saturday farmers market in the town center. I was there with baby Sadie in the stroller and baby Sam in the snuggly and you asked me if it was hard to manage. At the end of the conversation you turned to Jon and said see she manages with 2 kids and 2 dogs. I bought so many veggies from you guys that summer. Then as soon as I saw you were doing a CSA program I was in.


Do you go for “surprise me” with the VLC bag or do you look ahead when Teri announces the weekly contents? I always look ahead, I’m the worst for waiting to find out.


Veggie that excites you the most: tomatoes or peppers. The kids eat the peppers like apples, and I sneak the tomatoes in everything I can.


Favourite Recipe: I don’t really use recipes, and when I do I always stray from it anyways. But my favorite thing to make is fried rice with Asian sausages.  Just typing this makes my mouth water its so tasty.


What is the last food pic you took on your phone? A roasted chicken dinner, with your veggies roasted


Describe your perfect pizza: best pizza is double cheese with pineapple.


Current fave song to cook to:  Lately it’s been a mix of a few playlists my sister and I collab’d on; one is a ‘90’s themed mix and the other is titled: 4am infomercial mix. It’s actually all the best of the malt shop era music.


Happiness is to me: A quiet day at home.


I hope back to school went well and that you’re keeping space in your life for the stuff that matters!

Take care and see you soon!

Teri 🙂

Week 10 Veggie Lovers’ Club Newsletter

Hi Veggie Lovers!

Pickup is:

  • Tuesday September 8th from 4:00 – 6:00 pm at Stanley Park in Brandon (14th Street between Princess Ave. and Lorne Ave. *Please avoid parking on the East side of 14th Street whenever possible to allow space for residents*)
  • Wednesday September 9th from 6:00 – 7:00 pm in Riverdale Community Centre (Rink) West Parking lot, Main Street, Rivers. (Under the shady tree!)

This is Week 10!  If you are in our summer program, pickups continue until Week 14, October 6 & 7.  Our 24 week program continues until December 15th.  If you would like to extend your summer program please be in touch with me right away as spaces are limited this year!


Additional Pre-Order Options this week!

You can place an order from:

the Pre-Order Form (pickup with your bag on Tuesday or Wednesday) AND/OR

the Friday Pickup Form (pickup Fridays 3 – 5 pm in The Green Spot parking lot).

The selection on the Friday list is much wider than the Pre-Order Form because we have much more time available to devote to harvesting and packing your orders for that day.  We can accommodate some VLC bag pickups on that day too, so if you can’t make it Tuesday or Wednesday that is another option – let us know the day before your pickup if you want to do this!

Links to both order forms are provided in the email you received on Saturday morning.


Spoiler Alert: If you would like to keep your bag contents a surprise, you’d better STOP READING NOW!!

The contents of the upcoming week’s bag are subject to change at the last minute, possibly without much notice, depending on harvest. It can be tough for us to estimate how much of a crop will be available before we actually harvest it freshly for your bag.  So, this posting is meant to give you a good idea of what is in your bag, but just be aware that it may change and we will do our best to let you know if that happens!  At the very least, this posting will be updated prior to delivery with the actual contents for the week, so that you can check that you’ve received everything you are supposed to! (and please do check!)

Your Week 10 Veggie Lovers’ Club bag contains:

Week9

Last Week’s Bag!

*Check the heart of your celery for damage, there is a pest that gets in this time of year and if the heart is brown it’s best to remove it so it doesn’t rot further.

You can click the links on the items above to view more info about each veggie including recipe & preparation suggestions, season, storage tips, and lots more!

Don’t forget to bookmark our online Veggie Guide so all the veggie info is at your fingertips!


About your Veggies & Farm Update!

Frost!  That’s the earliest I’ve ever seen it here.  We’re grateful we had lots of warning and 3 relatively open days that we could throw at pre-frost harvesting.  We couldn’t and didn’t save it all.  Over the weekend we picked 50 crates of tomatoes, 5,000 onions, 8 pails of peppers, 11 pails of cucumbers, a few thousand lbs of squash, 100 or so melons, 2 pails of beans, all of the eggplant and basil. Life gets a lot simpler from now on: there are still all the root veggies and storage crops to bring in, but with no tomatoes, cucumbers, or beans to pick we have so much more space!

This is the last of the lettuce!  Lettuce is actually not frost-sensitive, but we don’t plan to have it beyond August most years because there is so much else at this time of year (and that rinse water gets COLD!!).

I LOVE fresh cabbage, and honored our first cabbage harvest yesterday by making coleslaw.  I used a green cabbage as well as a Napa that I had saved.  I like to slice it really thinly using a mandolin.  Cabbage will carry this salad lover all winter!

Celery!  We’ve spaced Celery 3 weeks apart in your bags this year and I know last time there were a lot of “returns” via the trade bin.  I hope you’ve made way for more this week!  It’s easier at this time of year because it’s soup season.  Watch the centre for damage, there is a bug (tarnish plant bug) that gets in and damages the heart and then it can rot.  Best to cut it out and store the stalks loose if that’s the case with yours.  We checked them for quality but as this is in the very centre it can be easy to miss!

The tomatoes you’re getting are not ripe, but if you leave them on your counter they will ripen over the next week or so.  Whatever you do, DON’T PANIC about tomatoes right now, we had a very large order to fill last week that used up every scrap of our ripe ones, but there is literally close to 2,000 lbs in the shed to ripen over the next couple of months.  If you are looking for a bulk quantity of 20 lbs or more, probably best to email me and get on my list at this point as we’ll be scheduling them from now on.  Now instead of picking tomatoes every week, we sort.  I’ll keep you posted if they get away on us and we need help moving ripe ones!

Or there’s always this!!:
Screenshot 2018-09-04 06.46.07

Did I hear someone say “Soup Season”??? Soup is my FAVOURITE!!!  I make soup twice a week or more in the winter, we eat it every day for lunch from September on.  I enjoy eating it AND making it.  So here’s a few of my favourite Soup recipes to share with you.  What’s your favourite soup recipe?  Share it with me this week and I’ll share more recipes in Week 11’s newsletter!


Veggie Lover Pick of the Week!

Each week I’ve been featuring one of our Veggie Lovers so we can all get to know each other better!  Feel welcome to nominate someone, including yourself if you’d like to be featured!

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Meet Reta Saborowski

Who else is in your household of veggie lovin’ eaters? My husband Chris and Isobel, the kidlebit

Veggie Lover Since: I was knee high to a grasshopper? I grew up on a farm, and thought that veggies were just what you ate…I didn’t realize kids could be picky eaters lmao

Do you go for “surprise me” with the VLC bag or do you look ahead when Teri announces the weekly contents? I read everything Teri writes – I appreciate how much goes into the emails, and the writing and I always want to stay au courant, as they say. (But also apparently, give you terrible run on sentences.

Veggie that excites you the most: I love zucchini. It is prolific, versatile, and tasty. As a kid, I tried to write a cookbook entitled “101 Ways to Cook Zucchini” I think I made it to around 37 or so? Chris found and gifted me a “1001 Ways to Cook Zucchini” Cookbook – so clearly I will need to dig deep if I ever try that project again! (Also. Kohlrabi. It is a delicious alien cabbage apple thing. How amazing is that?!)

Favourite Recipe: I don’t really follow recipes. I am all about radical sovereignty….but I am pretty into a rubbed kale salad, toasted tomato sandwich (open face, with mayo) or stir fried zucchini, green tomatoes, mushrooms and onion situation, topped with cheese!

What is the last food pic you took on your phone? Lunchtime ribeye, with steamed broccoli topped with hollandaise sauce

Describe your perfect pizza: Any pizza in the storm. I worked at Domino’s Pizza as a teenager (delivery!) What I like is variety – so our pizza order is often two pizzas, each split into two different topping selections!

Current fave song to cook to: AM radio hits….Amazon Prime Music has offered me a custom radio station which is amazeballs. Gordon Lightfoot, Simon and Garfunkel, and then Spice Girls…what a wondrous time we live in.

Happiness is to me: a book, a snack, and a drink. As a wife, mother, and business owner (Bee EZ Tree Service) my life is full…..so to sit quietly for a moment or two = happiness. Bonus points if the coffee is hot.


I hope your return to school this week goes well, whatever that looks like for you this year!

See you at the pickup!

Teri 🙂

Week 9 Veggie Lovers Club Newsletter

Hi Veggie Lovers!

This week is a payment week if you chose 2- or 3-installments.  Email me or ask me at the pickup if you need to know what you owe!

Pickup is:

  • Tuesday September 1 from 4:00 – 6:00 pm at Stanley Park in Brandon (14th Street between Princess Ave. and Lorne Ave. *Please avoid parking on the East side of 14th Street whenever possible to allow space for residents*)
  • Wednesday September 2 from 6:00 – 7:00 pm in Riverdale Community Centre (Rink) West Parking lot, Main Street, Rivers. (Under the shady tree!)

Additional Pre-Order Options this week!

You can place an order from:

the Pre-Order Form (pickup with your bag on Tuesday or Wednesday) AND/OR

the Friday Pickup Form (pickup Fridays 3 – 5 pm in The Green Spot parking lot).

The selection on the Friday list is much wider than the Pre-Order Form because we have much more time available to devote to harvesting and packing your orders for that day.  We can accommodate some VLC bag pickups on that day too, so if you can’t make it Tuesday or Wednesday that is another option – let us know the day before your pickup if you want to do this!

Links to both order forms are provided in the email you received on Saturday morning.


Spoiler Alert: If you would like to keep your bag contents a surprise, you’d better STOP READING NOW!!

The contents of the upcoming week’s bag are subject to change at the last minute, possibly without much notice, depending on harvest. It can be tough for us to estimate how much of a crop will be available before we actually harvest it freshly for your bag.  So, this posting is meant to give you a good idea of what is in your bag, but just be aware that it may change and we will do our best to let you know if that happens!  At the very least, this posting will be updated prior to delivery with the actual contents for the week, so that you can check that you’ve received everything you are supposed to! (and please do check!)

Your Week 9 Veggie Lovers’ Club bag contains:

Week8

Last week’s bag!

  • Celeriac, 1 large
  • Chard, 1 bunch
  • Leeks, 1-2
  • Potatoes, Red 2 lbs (from Mom’s)
  • Sweet Onions, 2-3 small
  • Bonus Free Choice Zucchini and Cucumbers at the pickup*

*A harvest bonus for our best customers! Help yourself (or don’t!), come later if you want a lot as it is easier to judge how much there is to go around nearer the end than the beginning!
We have more than we can sell so we’re sharing the abundance.  We don’t like to overwhelm folks with too many cucumbers or zucchini in the weekly bags so if you’re not sick of them then make sure you take some!

You can click the links on the items above to view more info about each veggie including recipe & preparation suggestions, season, storage tips, and lots more!

Don’t forget to bookmark our online Veggie Guide so all the veggie info is at your fingertips!


About your Veggies & Farm Update!

Last Week’s Chez Angela Gift Card winner was Teri J. in Rivers!  (Yes, there are TWO of us lol!)

Wow, September 1 & 2!!  Last week the pickup was abuzz about back to school.  This week’s bag really feels like fall with veggies like Leeks and Celeriac and Potatoes.

Celeriacwe’re sending the tops along this week as they’re still nice and green.  Make sure you cover them up in the fridge if you want to use them! This veggie is in the same family as Celery but the tops are fibrous and packed with flavour so best used for stocks or cut finely into a soup.  Check out the Veggie Guide entry about Celeriac for more info!

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Evelyn waiting for grasshoppers as Sam and I harvested your Celeriac yesterday

You may find that the centre of your Celeriac tops has some rotten leaves.  I recommend cutting the tops off right away and storing them separately and picking out any rotten bits first so the entire thing doesn’t slime.  We’ve had lots of pest pressure this year and the tarnish plant bugs have gotten in.  They are a sap sucker (like an aphid) and seem to prefer the hearts of celery and celeriac.  They damage the hearts and then they turn brown and slimy.  Also, grasshoppers.  If you see any huge chunks eaten from any of your veggies, it’s likely grasshoppers.  (We try to keep Myrah from chewing on the veggies!).  There are A LOT of grasshoppers this year.  The hens have even been coming out to the field and eating them.  (There’s nothing more satisfying than watching one of our friendly hens bludgeon those f’ers to death, I hate them so much!!  They’re like little jumpy unpredictable gremlins).

I posted all of the recipe suggestions from last time you got Chard in the Veggie Guide entry so if you’re looking for some ideas, click this link!  Late season Chard is the best IMO as it gets sweeter with the cooler temperatures.

We had a rough start with Leeks this year and so this week represents about 1/3 of the entire crop that we have for this year.  However, we have a LOT of onions left and I’m super happy about that.  This is almost the end of the Sweet Onions so after this week we’ll be into the Cortland/Storage Onions.

Here’s the perfect recipe for this week’s bag.  You can sub the Celeriac tops finely chopped for Celery, and even use some of the bulb with the potatoes!  (If you have any Celery left, make way for more coming next week!  We’ve got to move through it and 3 weeks apart is as far as we can spread it out right now!)

LeekPotato

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Chard buddy!  So many frogs around this year!

Free Choice Zucchini and Cucumbers: We truly want to share the abundant harvest with you with these items!  Don’t hesitate to take some if you can use it.  The goal is for me to bring it into town and have it disappear to the people who support us the most!  I don’t like to stuff people’s bags full of cukes and zukes if they’re not needed or wanted.  In 10+ years doing CSA I have learned that the biggest complaint of outgoing members is overwhelm.  You love what we do and you’re on board with treasuring our veggies as the special labour of love that they are– so to waste the fruits of our labour is unacceptable to many people: Stuffing your bag full of cucurbits if you can’t manage them is counterproductive.  Believe me, the hens can’t eat any more cucumbers and we can’t either, Mom is pickling and relishing as fast as she can, and there’s STILL a bit of a gap between what we produced and what we can sell now that Markets are over… It’s a short window and not worth my time selling them but they need to be picked on schedule so they keep producing.  You are truly helping us out by taking as much as you can eat this week!


Veggie Lover Pick of the Week!

Meet Jenny Ardiel!

Who else is in your household of veggie lovin’ eaters? Just me and my handsome cat Pips. He has been known to nibble on produce.

Veggie Lover Since: The start of time. I’ve been a huge veggie lover my whole life. My gardening skills leave a lot of room to improve so I’m very happy that Brown Sugar has it perfected.

 

Do you go for “surprise me” with the VLC bag or do you look ahead when Teri announces the weekly contents? I always read the newsletter on the weekend and check out the upcoming loot.

 

Veggie that excites you the most: Oooo. This is tough for me to pick just one. However,  my favourite are potatoes. Be still my Irish heart. I have yet to meet a potato that I don’t love. They are versatile, nutritious, long lasting and delicious.

 

Favourite Recipe: Celery soup. I would bathe in it if allowed.

 

What is the last food pic you took on your phone? Fish tacos with kohlrabi, onions, carrots, and cilantro from Brown Sugar.
Describe your perfect pizza: Lots of veggies and cheese. However, I’m not the hugest pizza fan.
Current fave song to cook to: I’m not a music person but I love podcasts, especially crime Podcasts. If ever I disappear, suspect everyone.
Happiness is to me: Taking the tube to see a musical in the West End of London.  Followed by pints in a pub with friends.
Least favourite veggie: Kale. It’s a garbage vegetable best served as garnish on a pizza buffet circa 1995.

 


I’m keeping it short this week folks, as we’ve got all that we can manage in front of us today.  By “short” I mean still really long and more than anyone has time for reading these days.  The back-to-school tension was palpable at last week’s pickup, I know everyone has a lot on their minds and plates right now.  Thinking of all of you and wishing you well, whatever direction you choose to take this year.  ❤

We feel so honored to be feeding you and your family during this time!!

-Teri 🙂

 

Veggie Greeting Cards by Teri!

In 2010 I participated in The Ride to Conquer Cancer, a 200 km bike ride through the Alberta foothills, which required me to raise a few thousand dollars from friends and family.  I rode in honor of my cousin Trevor who passed away in fall 2009 from Sarcoma cancer.  I created these cards and sold them in exchange for donations.

I have a great print shop here now (shoutout to Dave and Leah at The UPS Store!) so I had the cards reprinted this year.  They actually turned out better than the originals, and what better time than now to send out some love to friends and family?!

This time I’m saving up for an exterior door for our house… isn’t adulting so boring??  Anyway, here are the cards and what they have on the inside.  A couple of the Thanks cards are blank inside, the rest have the greeting inside.

My favourite is the vegetables picking people one.  It makes no sense and I love it!

PrintPrintPrintPrintPrintPrintPrintPrint

Sold as a set of (4) Birthday or (4) Thanks cards for $12/set.

Our CSA members and Friday order folks can order them through our online order forms, and if you want to order some via the mail I can send them to you, email me at sales@brownsugarproduce.com!

Thanks for supporting this little side project of mine!  ❤

Sold Out: Brown Sugar Produce Market Season 2020 comes to an end Friday August 21

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We have decided that Friday August 21 was our last public market of the season.

What a wild ride this year has been, but it’s been an amazing season and we have so much to be grateful for!

Our veggie trailer in front of Lady of the Lake was so well supported this season.  We saw many returning faces, but also a large proportion of new faces at our physically-distant outdoor market.  Sales increased so much that we have run out of vegetables, and so with increased Covid-19 restrictions starting next week in our local area we have made the decision to end our market season.

Our weekly Community Supported Agriculture Program (weekly veggie bag) continues with 101 families into December, and at this point we believe that we only have enough produce to supply those in our program.  Our program is full but if you are interested please make sure your name is on our mailing list, as who knows what will happen for next year and there’s a possibility we may shift to take on more CSA members:  Click here to join our mailing list!

dsc01817We DO, however, have lots of cucumbers right now and so if you are looking for some, you can fill out our online order form here

There is a possibility that we will have a pop up market later in the season if we have additional produce available, depending on the squash yield.  We will be sure to keep you posted of our plans as they develop.  Again, be sure your name is on our mailing list in case we need to email you!

We apologize that we didn’t give notice about this, but we didn’t want to make our final market of the year any busier than it was given the situation in town right now.  Those who attended market yesterday were informed and I’d like to respond to a few Frequently Asked Questions from yesterday:

Can I put in an order for pickup Fridays?
No.  Unfortunately we don’t have the capacity or the produce to supply our entire customer base at this time.  We are only able to supply orders to our existing CSA members who committed to our farm this season.  We have sold through all of the produce that we grew for the markets.

What is “CSA” and how do I join?
CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture and it is a form of direct marketing, where the consumer and the farmer make a connection before the start of the growing season.  We commit to growing for a set number of people in this program each year and then provide weekly farmer-selected bags of seasonally ripe produce to our members throughout the growing season, for 14-, 10- or 24-weeks.

All of the information about our program can be found here on our website: Veggie Lovers Club.

Our program is full but if you are interested please make sure your name is on our mailing list as who knows what will happen for next year and there’s a possibility we may shift our plans to take on more CSA members:  Click here to join our mailing list!

CSA has changed our farm into an enterprise that can support our whole family. It has deepened our relationships with our best customers, increased our capacity, and it’s the perfect fit for marketing our labour of love. It is a promise that we take very seriously and work hard to fulfill each season.  Stopping markets to slow the outflow of produce is an important decision that we had to make so we could keep our promise to our members this season.

I guess you need to get bigger!
Absolutely not!  We believe the magic in what we do lies in our small scale: You are buying vegetables from the people who grow them.  It is important to us to build strong supportive relationships with the people we grow food for, which is why we try to learn your name at the markets and why we love our CSA members!  It has never been in our plans to grow any bigger than we are, in fact we are actively trying to decrease our production as Mom retires more each year.

The solution we want to see is more small scale farms like ours in our area.  We encourage you to seek out other small producers and support them as you can.  We need more colleagues in this community, not bigger farms!

For additional reading on this topic: Please see this post or “The Lorax” by Dr. Seuss!

Do you get to rest now?
Haha, no, we are now entering the most intense part of our season, Harvest time!  Markets are a HUGE energy output for us each week and harvest time will go a bit easier without them, but the pace of the produce supply ripening right now means we will still be supplying large amounts of produce every week to our existing CSA members as well as bringing in the fall storage crops.  Markets have been so busy this year that they pushed past being fun and so we are all glad to be done with “brain melt day” as we fondly refer to it.

Good Problems?
I suppose so, but I think this observation tends to miss the forest for the trees.  Yes, it is wonderful that we were well supported all season and that more and more customers visited us every week.  We reached our annual market sales goal in 2/3 of the markets that we planned to do and now we can stop.  However, we plan our season to have a steady flow and we have been teetering around burnout for the past month due to the extra heavy load of intensely busy markets.  It’s harder to connect with folks when there is a heavy flow of customers: I haven’t enjoyed the markets as much this year because of it.  We do this out of love for what we do and love for our community, not because we want to increase our business size.  I heard from many of our existing customers that the long lineups prevented them from attending, and the large volumes were pushing us to a pace that is not sustainable.  We are tired and now facing the heaviest part of our season, and so energy is precious and in short supply.

So though we are of course SUPER grateful for the support, we prefer to operate slow and steady and following our plans rather than a race to the finish.  Veggie farming is a marathon, not a sprint, and the amount of veggies our team can produce is finite!  We’ve never sold out so early in the season before.

Also, just wanted to add a big shoutout to YOU, reading this right now.  The ability for me to share our story and the day-to-day life we have to a supportive audience is my favourite part of my job as a veggie grower!  To those of you who follow along on our social media as well, those connections are so important to us and we treasure the relationships we have in real life, and extended online especially in this time of separation.  Thank you for giving me a platform to share what we do, by reading my posts and content.
❤ ❤ ❤


When we sat down as a farm team in May and discussed our strategy for this season and decided that we would just try to be adaptable and go with whatever was flowing.  So, as we knew that we were running low on produce (we were 1 – 2 weeks away from stopping anyway), with the increased restrictions taking effect next week it is good timing to stop public markets.  Our commitment to our weekly CSA members, and the harvest work load we are facing in coming weeks means we’re all being very careful to stay safe and well.  Taking public markets out of the equation right now just makes sense, and we are super grateful that we were so well supported that this is an easy decision for us.

FarmTeam2020

Market Crew 2020 just after our final market Friday August 21

Thank you to everyone who attended our markets this year, we truly treasure your support of this labour of love, and couldn’t do it without you!  We wish you all the best and will keep you posted about our plans as they evolve and adapt.

Keep on dancing through the storms, folks!

Sending all my love to you and your family,

Teri 🙂

Week 8 Veggie Lovers Club Newsletter

Hi Veggie Lovers!

An important update this week which opens up more availability for YOU to access our produce, please see below for more info!

Pickup is:

  • Tuesday August 25th from 4:00 – 6:00 pm at Stanley Park in Brandon (14th Street between Princess Ave. and Lorne Ave. *Please avoid parking on the East side of 14th Street whenever possible to allow space for residents*)
  • Wednesday August 26th from 6:00 – 7:00 pm in Riverdale Community Centre (Rink) West Parking lot, Main Street, Rivers. (Under the shady tree!)

Additional Pre-Order Options this week!

BIG ANNOUNCEMENT!

FarmTeam2020

Market Crew 2020

We have decided that Friday August 21 was our last public market of the season.  It has been a busier than average market season and we have sold all of the produce we had allocated for markets.  With increasing covid restrictions coming this week, we decided to shift and offer a second weekly pickup option for our members only.  We can tell from the volume of Tuesday orders this year and the number of you who regularly come to our Friday markets that there is increased demand for our veggies within our CSA membership as well this year.  It PAINED ME to close the order form early last week but I know our capacity and it was the only option.

Our members come first.  That’s our commitment to you, because you make a commitment to us when you agree to regularly pick up our produce and make us part of your life.  Thank you!

Click here to read our public announcement about the end of market season.

So: bear with us, as this is all new for us as well.

We have limited the selection on the Pre-Order Form due to capacity.  We have been struggling every week with the volume pre-orders but you are our best customers and we want to supply you with as much veggies as you want.  The Pre-Order Form link can be found in the email you received Saturday morning (I will no longer be posting it in the newsletter as it is not for the public and I don’t want anyone to get confused).  It contains all of the items we feel we can easily get ready to come with your weekly bag pickup, as well as the full herbs and pickle selection, t-shirts and greeting cards.

Additionally, we emailed a Friday Order Form link to you on Saturday with the FULL SELECTION for pickup on Fridays from 3 – 5 pm in The Green Spot parking lot.  (We decided on the venue change so as to not wear out our welcome at the park and not confuse anyone at Lady of the Lake as we are no longer offering public markets.  This venue is not a market, it is just a meeting point for you to pick up pre-ordered veggies.)

You can place an order from the Pre-Order Form (pickup with your bag on Tuesday or Wednesday) AND/OR the Friday Pickup Form (pickup Fridays 3 – 5 pm in The Green Spot parking lot).  The selection on Friday is much wider than the Pre-Order Form because we have much more time available to devote to harvesting and packing your orders for that day.

Some other things:
-We can handle a small shift of some weekly bags to Friday pickup by request in advance (by Monday at noon please).  SO: if you live out of town and only want to come into Brandon once, those are the folks who will get first dibs on the Friday red bag pickup spaces.  But if you live in town and it just makes your life easier some weeks, we can make that work too!  Whenever possible, we request that you stick to red bag pickup on Tuesdays and extra veggie pickup on Fridays to help even out our weekly workload. Thanks!!
-By no means can you miss Tuesday or Wednesday pickup without prior notice and request your bag pickup on Friday instead: This MUST be organized in advance to prevent us from doing the work of making your bag and delivering it twice.
-Rivers folks: I am open to a drop off or figuring out a way to get you some Friday orders without you having to travel all the way to Brandon too.  Depends on interest and volume, so the conversation is open – send me an email if you have ideas or interest!

Please feel welcome to be in touch if you have questions, this was a quick shift for us and by no means have we thought of everything!


Spoiler Alert: If you would like to keep your bag contents a surprise, you’d better STOP READING NOW!!

The contents of the upcoming week’s bag are subject to change at the last minute, possibly without much notice, depending on harvest. It can be tough for us to estimate how much of a crop will be available before we actually harvest it freshly for your bag.  So, this posting is meant to give you a good idea of what is in your bag, but just be aware that it may change and we will do our best to let you know if that happens!  At the very least, this posting will be updated prior to delivery with the actual contents for the week, so that you can check that you’ve received everything you are supposed to! (and please do check!)

Your Week 8 Veggie Lovers’ Club bag contains:

Week7

Last week’s bag!

You can click the links on the items above to view more info about each veggie including recipe & preparation suggestions, season, storage tips, and lots more!

Don’t forget to bookmark our online Veggie Guide so all the veggie info is at your fingertips!


About your Veggies & Farm Update!

Wow, what a week!  We knew we were close to having to end the markets, and the timing just seems right with the increased restrictions in the area now.  We’re very grateful we were so well supported all season that we achieved our sales goal in only 10 weeks – and so being sold out & stopping markets at this point is actually preferable.

FYI, “Sold Out” means we have sold through all the the produce we designated for markets and we’re holding the rest of our production for our CSA members.  So, rest assured there is still heaps of produce available and we’re going to have no trouble filling those bags in coming weeks.  Please feel welcome to place an order for Tuesdays or Fridays if you would like anything additional, we still have lots relative to a smaller customer base.

We’ve got one planting of lettuce remaining after this and then we’re done with lettuce for the season.  We’ve chosen to send it to you as heads this week because they keep for a very long time that way, so if you’re overwhelmed with veggies right now this head lettuce has some staying power!  If you’re a fan of our lettuce mix, make sure to order some for this Friday or next as it will be done for the season after that!

Mom’s got some huge beets at her place and we’ve been pillaging ours each week for markets so we got you one huge “phat” beet this week instead of a bunch or a bag.  Totally suitable for anything you make with beets, you’ll just have to cut it up!  You can use part of a beet and save the rest in the fridge for later, I often grate raw beet onto salads and just keep the rest of the beet in a bag in the fridge for next time.

Member Erin shared this recipe last week and says: This simple roasted beet in sour cream and fresh dill sauce was so easy to make and turned out delicious!! https://copykat.com/roasted-beets-with-sour-cream/
(Oh, and for sour cream, I highly recommend the Organic Olympic brand in the white and green container.  Every time I serve that people go nuts!  It’s so good!!)

Erin also shared this recipe for Mexican Street Corn Slaw and so if you still have corn and cabbage kicking around, try this: I made this corn slaw yesterday and it was amazing! I followed recipe and cut corn off cob and sauteed it with the peppers first. I would think that bbqing corn on the cob and then adding it to slaw would also work and be delicious! I used mayo/sour cream combo in dressing but one of the comments mentioned substituting plain greek yogurt instead of mayo. And while the blog noted that using napa cabbage would make slaw not as crunchy, I found that my cabbage still had crunch lol. Oh and I also added some celery and cucumbers for added crunch!
https://www.jocooks.com/recipes/mexican-street-corn-slaw/

The garlic turned out great this year and has cured nicely.  We have lots available for our members this fall!

Twice a week or more now we are picking cucumbers, tomatoes, zucchini.  From now on at every pickup there will be a self-serve zucchini adoption centre for those who would like to have more than what comes in the bags. This week we are putting some in your bag but if you want more there will be some extra on the side.  Potentially the same for cucumbers, I know you’ve gotten a lot of them in the past couple of weeks and so if you are growing tired of them, rehome them to the trade bin and if you’re still enjoying them, feel welcome to take some extra!

We had a big flush of ripe tomatoes right at the beginning of tomato season (we suspect due to the storms and heaps of rain) and now they have levelled off and are ripening at a normal rate.  So if you’re looking for some for canning, we will have lots later in the season but this week they’re all going in the bags.

Just a reminder that orders for Friday are due by Wednesday at midnight.  I will include another link to the order form in the reminder email for today’s pickup for you!


Veggie Lover Pick of the Week

DonnaFalkevitch

Name: Donna Falkevitch

Who else is in your household of veggie lovin’ eaters? My husband Dave and I. Our two grown daughters live in New Brunswick and Alaska so don’t get to visit very often (especially this year) but they both grow and enjoy gardens. We also have a very lovable almost 16 year-old golden retriever named Maggie in our family but she doesn’t eat many veggies.

Veggie Lover Since: Veggie Lover all my life but just joined your club in June 2020, when you offered delivery to Rivers community.

Do you go for “surprise me” with the VLC bag or do you look ahead when Teri announces the weekly contents? I want to see what will be in my bag because I also have a small garden at home and don’t want to harvest too much of the same thing at once. Next year may be different.

Veggie that excites you the most: Beets!! Carrots, peas, corn, onions!!

Favourite Recipe: I mostly enjoy fresh veggies the old-fashioned way …boiled, with butter, salt and pepper. It really brings out the flavour of fresh veggies.

What is the last food pic you took on your phone? Sorry, don’t have a smart phone, but I did take a photo of a jar of pickled eggs that I had just whipped up today and sent it to my girls (the photo, not the eggs, lol).

Describe your perfect pizza: Thin, crispy crust, tomato sauce, chicken, bacon, mushrooms, red peppers, and lottsa cheese.

Current fave song to cook to: Classic rock all day baby!

Happiness is to me: Outside enjoying nature, kayaking, reading, photography, sunsets and especially visits with my girls. If I was ever to get a tattoo it would say “Live the life you love, Love the life you live”. I really do love my life! I have been blessed.

Teri’s Note: Ok, I officially LOVE this new addition to the newsletter and I look forward to continuing every week!!  Thanks to Buffy and Donna so far for participating.  If you want to be featured send me your answers and a photo before next Tuesday!


Thank you, Veggie Lovers!  We are so grateful to have a group of members that we can continue to supply this fall.  This method of distribution is well suited to the times!

Take care and see you later!

Teri 🙂

Week 7 Veggie Lovers Club Newsletter

Hi Veggie Lovers!!

Brandon Update: Thanks to everyone in Brandon who found us relocated to the West side of the park last week — the road crew told me to move at 5 pm which made for a bit of chaos.  I’m so glad for that crazy decaled van and the trail of red bags that are easy to spot!  Doing the loading and unloading twice was exhausting (physically and mentally) and the fact that the road crew didn’t actually do any work after I moved was a touch aggravating.

Word is that the resurfacing is done and the street is back to normal today, yay!

At the same time, it’s been brought to my attention that there is someone living on the street near our usual spot that is upset and planning to complain about our weekly pickup.  I would rather play nice, so I thought I’d see first if we can work together on making less of an impact to the neighborhood while the pickup is on.  (That being said, it’s chicken pickup week for Luna Field Farm and so this week in particular will be busier than average).

My idea is this: If you could try to avoid parking on the East side of 14th street as much as possible, so that we leave parking spaces for the residents of the street.  If the West side is full there are often spaces on Lorne Ave and also Princess and 15th Street: This means you may need to walk a ways to pickup your bag.  If you have a large order, children in the vehicle, or any trouble with mobility, go ahead and park as close as you need to.  If you’re able-bodied and not in a hurry, and could do the courtesy of not taking the spaces on the East side of 14th Street, it will be appreciated.  I know we can work together and make an impact for these residents and show them what community is all about!

Reminder that drive-through pickup attempts will not be tolerated: It puts everyone’s safety at risk.  If you stop in the middle of the street I will not distribute your bag, this boundary has been pushed a few times so is now a firm No.

(I was devastated to hear the news that someone is upset with us as the park has been used as a CSA pickup for over 20 years (firstly by farmer Menno Isaac I believe.  I ran into him and wife Evelyn at The Green Spot a few weeks ago and he was thrilled to hear that the legacy of CSA at Stanley Park is continuing!).  We love our spot at the park and we are not knowingly breaking any rules being there, but I detest the thought of dealing with a hassle over our pickup spot: I don’t have a lot of extra energy for drama ever, but especially at this time of year.  We try to be good neighbors for the brief window we are there. Full disclosure, I came home Tuesday and cried my eyes out over this!)

Rivers Update: Just wanted to let you know how much I LOVE the Rivers CSA pickup!!  We have a great supportive group of members there and I look forward to the pickup every week.  It’s getting better and better as I get to know you all: thanks to those of you who take time to chat, because relationships are what I’m all about!

Last week’s Chez Angela gift card winners were Patti and Garry!  I happened to notice the card as I was handing Garry the bag.  He was one of the members who had to caravan around to 15th street with me to get his bag and so it was good timing!

Pickup is:

  • Tuesday August 18th from 4:00 – 6:00 pm at Stanley Park in Brandon (14th Street between Princess Ave. and Lorne Ave. *Please avoid parking on the East side of 14th Street whenever possible!*)
  • Wednesday August 19th from 6:00 – 7:00 pm in Riverdale Community Centre (Rink) West Parking lot, Main Street, Rivers. (Under the shady tree!)

 

Spoiler Alert: If you would like to keep your bag contents a surprise, you’d better STOP READING NOW!!

The contents of the upcoming week’s bag are subject to change at the last minute, possibly without much notice, depending on harvest. It can be tough for us to estimate how much of a crop will be available before we actually harvest it freshly for your bag.  So, this posting is meant to give you a good idea of what is in your bag, but just be aware that it may change and we will do our best to let you know if that happens!  At the very least, this posting will be updated prior to delivery with the actual contents for the week, so that you can check that you’ve received everything you are supposed to! (and please do check!)

img_1283

Your Week 7 Veggie Lovers’ Club bag contains:

You can click the links on the items above to view more info about each veggie including recipe & preparation suggestions, season, storage tips, and lots more!

Don’t forget to bookmark our online Veggie Guide so all the veggie info is at your fingertips!


About your Veggies!

img_2517

Mom, Myrah and I picking up corn for the CSA bags in Winkler at Covenant Growers farm stand in August 2018

Halfway point for the 14-week program!

It’s corn week!  Every summer we include a half dozen of Marcus’s incredible Sweet Corn in one of the August bags.  I try to time it so that his main variety is on, which is the one he says has the best flavour.  We have to meet in Portage to pick up the corn and so this is the last week we plan to have any as the peas and beans are done which makes the pickup not make financial sense for us.  Enjoy this treat!!

P.S. If you want to freeze the corn but don’t have time to cook it and take the kernels off that husks, you can freeze it whole in the husks.  I tried that last year and it worked great!  I would recommend thawing them first if you want to eat it on the cob (otherwise it takes forever to boil and the middle is still frozen which makes it cool down instantly!).

If you don’t like Cilantro, we’ll have an entire two trays of other herbs for you to trade for this week.  People who don’t like it, like James, are very vocal about their dislike of it!  I get it, and I’m happy to provide a selection of herbs for you to choose from if you don’t prefer it. 🙂

It was my goal this year to do a bag that would contain all the veggies you need for my favourite Kale Salad Recipe, and so that’s this week’s bag!  Here’s the recipe (thanks to Veggie Lover Erin for sharing last year!):

*I often add chopped celery and./or green pepper to this salad because it makes for a nice combo and crunch!

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3 varieties of kale this year

Kale: We grew a few different varieties this year and so some of the bunches are mixed.  The black/lacinato sometimes throws folks for a loop.  It’s kale, and the most tender of all varieties!

We are including some cucumbers in your bags again this week because they are abundant right now.  This time of year it’s common for the weekly bags to be extra abundant, and it makes up for any time in the future when the selection is more limited.  (ie you are getting more value right now and you may get less at some point in the future, that’s how veggie growing works and the bags reflect that!)


Holding Onions for you!

Our veggie trailer has been very popular this year as folks branch out and try to find options outside the grocery store.  The fact remains that we were already growing as many veggies as possible for our team before this pandemic started.  Our members– that’s you!– signed up before that also and committed to supporting our farm through good and bad.  We take that seriously and so despite the pressure that the markets have become this year (lineups beginning at 9 am an hour before we open, solid customers at both windows for 4 straight hours, sales up 25% on average) we are allocating produce to our members, first.  Suddenly onions are very popular, likely due to a salmonella issue in onions recently shipped to MB.  We could take 2 to 3 times more to markets than is usual to sell at this time of year.  But we’re not, because onions are a crop we count on for the fall and winter for our CSA members.

Our Veggie Lovers Pre-Orders have increased as well: I had to close the order form early this week because we were at capacity for what we can manage as a team.   Unfortunately we just don’t have the capacity to execute that many orders, especially on Tuesdays when the van is already stuffed to the gills and we barely finish in time as it is.  This week in particular Jon, Myrah and I had a lot to harvest for shares and no additional labour available (Plus our neighbor childcare has ended because one family is busy with grain harvest and the other is a teacher).  Anyway, I don’t forsee needing to close the form regularly (filling orders from members is a priority!), but I’m sure glad we did this week as it took some of the pressure off.

We’ll still have a good supply of tomatoes for the forseeable future, and cucumbers too!  We’re so grateful for you and how you show up when we let you know something is flooding in.  Tomato crisis averted this week, thanks to the Veggie Lovers!


And now, my solution for the busy season when I don’t have as much time to write in the newsletter: Veggie Lover Pick of the Week!  For the rest of the program if possible I’ll be choosing a Veggie Lover Pick of the Week each week and having them answer some questions about themselves so we can all get to know each other better!

Veggie Lover Pick of the Week!

Name: Buffy Dawson Cancade

Who else is in your household of veggie lovin’ eaters? My husband, Steve, and our little boys, Rafael & Ludo. And can’t forget Diego, our sweet chocolate lab.
Veggie Lover Since: I forget!

Do you go for “surprise me” with the VLC bag or do you look ahead when Teri announces the weekly contents?
Surprise me – I love unpacking that red bag!

Veggie that excites you the most: Greens & Lettuce Mix!

Favourite Recipe: This is a long time fave in our house – this delicious, simple picnic version of a Tuna Nicoisse salad. Once you’ve tried it, you can improvise on the recipe to your taste and it’s well suited as a make ahead simple meal.
https://www.lcbo.com/lcbo/recipe/pan-bagnat/201103023#.XzmPTpNKjBI

What is the last food pic you took on your phone? A pile of limes & lemons.

Describe your perfect pizza: Spinach, garlic & goat cheese with a drizzle olive oil.

Current fave song to cook to: “All Day, All Night” by the California Honeydrops

Happiness is to me: good coffee; wine & snacks in new places; creative cooking; quiet, unscheduled mornings.IMG_1717

If you’d like to be Veggie Lover Pick of the Week, feel welcome to send me an email with the answers to these questions and a couple of photos of yourself and your family!  I’m likely going to choose a couple of people at a time to ensure one comes through in time for the newsletter, so if you actually WANT to do it that makes my choice easier!


Thanks Veggie Lovers: My life is better because you’re in it!

Also, this:

We thought Myrah was napping yesterday while we rushed to finish prepping the veggies for shares and orders.  Turns out she was exploring her creative side all over upstairs with a brand new set of Mommy’s acrylic (non water soluble) paints!  This was *awesome* to clean up at the end of the day.  That’ll teach me for leaving things within reach!

Have a great week and I hope the messes you encounter are less than this one!

Teri 🙂

 

Farm Fresh Cucumbers!

dsc01817We grow gorgeous fresh pickling cukes at the farm. They are picked every 2-3 days, and though we do make lots of our own pickles on the farm, many cucumbers go to our customers who make their own. Varieties are Pioneer, National Pickling, and Cool Breeze.

How it works: We keep a list of names of those who are interested in buying pickling cucumbers. After, or shortly before a harvest we go through our list and call to see who can take them. Since picking happens every few days, this may not always be on a market day and so pickup is often at the farm (just 5 miles NE of Brandon). **August 27: We currently have availability for most picking days and so the order form has a few different pickup times in Brandon and Rivers that you can select, or you can choose farm pickup and make an appointment with Mom.  

If you are a new customer scheduling a pickup, we require you to e-transfer the payment prior to pickup.

Sept 8 –CUCUMBERS ARE DONE FOR THE SEASON–

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Sam, Mom, and Aunty Jayne making pickles in 2016

Pickling Cukes are $2.75/lb.
Larger Cukes for sliced/bread & butter pickles are $2.50/lb
Relish Cukes are $2.00/lb
We will confirm your order and pickup location after you place your order.  Please allow around 24 hours for us to collect your order (ie if you want them Friday, order by Thursday).

Email us at sales@brownsugarproduce.com if you have any questions!  Please communicate responsibly, our lives are very full this time of year and we aren’t on the computer much.  This form is meant to help get most of the answers we need from you in an efficient way.