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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Winter Veggies, Soups, Pies & Sweaters



I’m sitting in the farm kitchen after lunch on this rainy day.  To my left I can see out the window at the soggy fields and windy branches letting go of their leaves with each large gust that passes through Powisset.  In front of me I can see through the glass doors into the distribution area and see the farm crew working with potatoes, onions, beets and turnips; bagging them up in preparation for our first winter CSA pick-up.  To my right, on the table, is my to-do list for the month, with a great variety of tasks—from ‘plow new fields,’ and ‘harvest all carrots & beets this week,’ to larger projects like, ‘write draft of next season’s crop plan’ or ‘create staffing plan for next year.’  There are plenty of open boxes waiting to be checked off and maybe a few things that I was proactive enough to cross off the list in this week and a half since our last summer share.  Tessa is busy working on the farm stand, making sure that our fall and winter offerings are delicious and comforting as we head into the “cozy food” time of year.  And I can see the display growing and changing before my eyes.

I’m still in my yellow overall rain pants that I put on before I left my house this morning.  I haven’t even been out working in the rain, but somehow the feeling that I may need to go harvest something or be ready to do field work hasn’t quite subsided for the season.  I feel comforted knowing I could head into the fields at any moment without skipping a beat.  It’s a hard thing to let go of—the duty to the fields.  The obligation to the work in the fields, which begins in March, is winding down.  In the season, the needs of the fields-the needs of the plants-come first.  If plants need to be planted, we do it.  If weeds need to be pulled, we pull them.  If tractors are broken, they are fixed.  If there is a CSA pick up, then we must harvest.  The fields tell me the plan for the week and I listen and do.  Now, as the season slows down, even as we know that the freeze is on its way—we have to push ourselves to keep up our pace, keep picking and keep listening to the fields, even when they are headed to bed for the season and seem to have less to say.  So, I keep my rain pants on, ready to go if I hear the call, but grateful for being able to get to those other items on the to-do list.  

For this week, there’s a lot of harvesting and bagging and washing and weighing, so I’m off to help.  I hope that you will come to the farm this weekend for these perfect bags of parsnips and pea shoots and purple top turnips! 

See you in the barn (or come out and listen to the fields with me),

Meryl & the Powisset Farm Crew



What’s in the first Winter Pick up and Farm Stand:
(some of these items are in the share; all are available at the stand)

This Saturday, October 25th, 10am-5pm

Lettuce, lettuce mix, spinach, pea shoots, arugula, broccoli, leeks, onions, shallots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, winter squash, garlic, chard, kale, carrots, beets, hot peppers, daikon, watermelon radishes, salad radish bunches, escarole, cilantro & other herbs, parsnips, rutabaga, purple top turnips


Get Your Soup On!

The glory of Fall is upon us and our closets are full with a bounty of sweaters. Break out your best pullover and come to the Powisset Barn for our fall potluck dinner event: Sweaters, Soups and Pie! Walk in the crisp fall air in the afternoon at 3 pm, come back to the barn for some pedal-powered apple cider to the beat of live music at 4 pm, and warm up in the barn with a potluck dinner starting at 5 pm. Let us know if you can make it and let’s celebrate the best season of all! And remember: life is better, in a sweater. Email Tessa at tpechenik@ttor.org to reserve your spot.


CSA Member Workshop:


Join CSA members Cheri Boissonnault and Kerri Esselman for an educational workshop at Powisset Farm. Cheri and Kerri are founding members of "The Healthy Home Movement.” Their workshop focuses on how you can use your purchasing power to make your home a healthier place.

Saturday, October 25 at Powisset from 11am-12pm.

Learn:
*The effect that chemicals in our personal care and cleaning products are doing to the current generation of adults and children.
* How to easily identify & replace products with safer alternatives.
*Why making intentional buying decisions matter to your family’s future.

For more information:



News From the Powisset Farm Kitchen:

The cool fall weather is here and there are plenty of opportunities to warm up in the Powisset Farm Kitchen!

Our next workshops include:

Sunday, October 26 | 2-4PM
Field to Lunchbox: Creative Solutions for Lunchbox Boredom
There’s only one spot open for this workshop AND there’s another Field to Lunchbox workshop on November 11!

Sunday, November 2 | 2-4PM
From the Fields: Farm-tastic Desserts

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Join our very own Bushel and Crumb pie maker, Simca Horwitz, for an afternoon of scrumptious desserts that feature farm vegetables! Beets, sweet potatoes and butternut squash will be featured in ways you will have to see to believe!

This workshop overlaps with our Sweaters, Soups and Pie Barn Potluck on November 2nd! Join Powisset Cooks! in the Farm Kitchen for Farm-tastic Desserts and then join the Powisset Farm community for cider pressing, live music and a potluck. Scroll down for more information about our Sweaters, Soups and Pie Barn Potluck.


Looking for a family-friendly Veterans Day activity? Join us in the Powisset Farm Kitchen to prepare delicious treats for the whole family to enjoy!

Thursday, November 20 | 5:30-7:30PM
For the Pantry: Sauerkraut and Kimchi

Get your fermentation on and join us in the Powisset Farm Kitchen to learn this time honored tradition of food preservation!

If you have any questions, please email Rachel: rkaplan@ttor.org


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

2014 Summer Share Report, Powisset Cooks! and Farm Stand Hours

Powisset Farm 2014 Share Value Report

Our 2014 farm season ran for 19 weeks, beginning on June 3rd and ending on October 11th.  The value of the share distributed at the barn (not including pick-your-own crops) for the full share totaled: $742.45.  The value distributed at the barn (not including the pick-your-own crops) for the small share totaled: $433.03. 

That is an average of $39 per week of Powisset veggies for the full share and $22.75 per week for the small share.  

We compiled our share data by tracking the amount given each week in the share multiplied by the price of each vegetable.  In our report you may see a range or a fraction of a bunch or pound given—this represents when a vegetable was part of a choice—maybe you could choose between kale or swiss chard, we would enter that in our records as distributing a half bunch of each item. 
As you can see, we exceeded the amount that you paid for your share!  Each season, we strive to provide you with the produce that you paid for (this season our share price for TTOR members was $625 for a full share and $400 for a small share).  Our produce is grown in accordance with all organic standards and growing practices and our prices are set based in comparison to organic and conventional prices at nearby supermarkets, farmers’ markets prices and neighboring CSA prices, also taking into consideration the cost of running our farm.  This season, in response to your feedback, we strove to provide you with a well-rounded bounty each week that would feel plentiful without being overwhelming.   We also added the small share option, providing you will an opportunity to choose the size of the share that you took home for the season.

One of the things that we were most excited about season was the wide variety that we were able to distribute week after week.  With the addition of the small share to our CSA program, we had to think more creatively about how to make two different shares.  We strove to offer both sizes of shares produce that matched your expectations, along with variety and flexibility to make some choices.  By looking at the share report and the tables each week, I am confident that we provided both value, choice and variety.  

Some of the highlights for us include the consistent distribution of lettuce and carrots throughout the season, a high quantity of broccoli (most peoples’ favorite), plenty of cucumbers and an abundance of tomatoes.  Throughout the season there was a variety of roots, greens and herbs to round out the share and we have had great feedback on the tasty quality of our potatoes this season.

With every farm season, we learn more about how to streamline our CSA and make it abundant, satisfying, fun and not too overwhelming.  Thank you for your feedback along the way and for helping to shape our CSA year after year.  As usual, please send any helpful feedback our way as we begin the planning for next season to: mlatronica@ttor.org

Our report below shows you how much of each item you received during the 2014 season:

CROP
Price per Unit
Units Distributed
Units Distributed in Full Share
$$ Value in Full Share
Units Distributed in Small Share
$$ Value in Small Share

Beets
$2.50
bunches/#
15
$37.50
7.66
$19.15
Broccoli
$2.50
#
8
$20.00
4
$10.00
Cabbage
$2.00
Heads
6.25
$12.50
3.33
$6.66
Carrots
$2.25
#
20.5
$46.13
13.75
$30.93
Cauliflower
$2.00
Heads
0
$0.00
0
$0.00
celery
$2.00
stalks
2.25
$4.50
2.25
$4.50
Celeriac
$1.25
#
1.5
$1.88
0.75
$0.93
Cucumbers
$1.25
#
19.5
$24.38
10
$12.50
Diakon
$1.50
#
0
$0.00
0
$0.00
Eggplant
$2.00
#
10.5
$21.00
6
$12.00
Fennel
$2.00
bunches/bulbs
7
$14.00
3.83
$7.66
green garlic
$3.00
bunches
2
$6.00
2
$6.00
Garlic bulbs
$1.50
#
6
$9.00
3
$4.50
garlic scapes
$3.00
dozen
3
$9.00
1.5
$4.50
corn
$0.75

30
$22.50
20
$15.00
Cooking Greens:






tatsoi
$2.50
bunches
0.5
$1.25
1
$2.50
bok choi
$2.50
Heads
7.16
$17.90
3.41
$8.52
Swiss Chard
$2.50
bunches
3.75
$9.38
2.83
$7.07
Kale
$2.50
bunches
8.5
$21.25
6.91
$17.27
purple mizuna
$2.50
bunches
0
$0.00
0
$0.00
brocc raab
$2.50
bunches
0
$0.00
0
$0.00
escarole
$2.50
Heads
1.16
$2.90
0.33
$0.82
komatsuna
$2.50
bunches
1
$2.50
0
$0.00
Salad Greens:






arugula pounds
$6.00
#
0.75
$4.50
0.5
$3.00
Arugula bunches
$2.50
bunches
7.5
$18.75
3.58
$8.95
Spinach
$3.00
#
4.5
$13.50
3.25
$9.75
lettuce mix
$3.00
#
2.5
$7.50
1.75
$5.25
Lettuce, heads
$2.75
heads
32
$88.00
17
$46.75
greens mix
$2.50
#
2
$5.00
1.25
$3.12
radicchio
$2.50
Heads
0.5
$1.25
0
$0.00
Herbs:






Basil
$2.00
bunches
4
$8.00
3.5
$7.00
Cilantro
$2.00
bunches
5.5
$11.00
4.5
$9.00
Mixed herbs
$2.00
bunches
2
$4.00
1
$2.00
onions bunches
$2.50
bunches
2
$5.00
1
$2.50
Kohlrabi
$2.50
bunches
3.16
$7.90
1.83
$4.57
Leeks
$2.50
bunches
5.5
$13.75
3.5
$8.75
Onions
$1.50
#
8
$12.00
4
$6.00
Parsnips
$1.25
#
1.5
$1.88
0.75
$0.93
Peppers, mixed Bell
$2.50
#
13
$32.50
7
$17.50
specialty peppers
$2.50
#
0.5
$1.25
0.5
$1.25
Potato
$1.50
#
14
$21.00
7
$10.50
Potato, Sweet
$2.50
#
3
$7.50
2
$5.00
Radishes
$1.50
bunches
5.5
$8.25
3.91
$5.86
Scallions
$2.00
bunches
7.25
$14.50
5.25
$10.5
summer squash
$1.25
#
26.5
$33.13
13
$16.25
winter squash
$3.50
pieces
7
$24.50
4
$14.00
Tomatoes, Slicing
$3.00
#
30.5
$91.50
15.5
$46.50
Tomatillo
$2.00
#
3
$6.00
2.75
$5.50
salad turnips
$2.00
bunches
4
$8.00
2.58
$5.16
turnips
$1.25
#
3
$3.75
1.5
$1.87
Watermelon
$3.00
piece
1
$3.00
1
$3.00
popcorn
$1.00
each
2
$2.00
2
$2.00







Total Share Value:
(without Pick-Your-Own)


FULL:
$742.45
SMALL:
$433.03


The total value of PYO crops offered to our full share was $216.50.  The total value of PYO crops offered to our small share was $166.50.  That is an average of $11.40 per week over 19 weeks for the full share and $8.75 per week for the small shares.  We know that you didn’t always make it out to the fields to participate in the pick-your-own part of our CSA, but most of you spent lots of time picking and we are proud to have a CSA that continues to provide the opportunity for you and your friends and family to get your hands dirty, find joy in picking a perfectly ripe raspberry, and bending low to get that last pint of husk cherries.

Below is your pick-your-own report for 2014:

CROP
Price per Unit
Units Distributed
Distributed in Full Share
$$ Value in Full Share
Distributed in Small Share
$$ Value in Small Share

Beans, Bush
$2.50
quarts
4
$10.00
2
$5.00
Beans, fava
$1.50
pints
4
$6.00
4
$6.00
cherry tomatoes
$3.00
pint
24
$72.00
14
$42.00
Dill
$1.50
bunches
1
$1.50
1
$1.50
flowers
$3.00
bouquet
10
$30.00
10
$30.00
hot peppers
$2.00
pint
0
$0.00
0
$0.00
husk cherries
$3.00
pint
3
$9.00
3
$9.00
Parsley
$1.50
bunches
8
$12.00
8
$12.00
Peas
$3.00
quarts
11
$33.00
7
$21.00
raspberries
$4.00
pint
4
$16.00
4
$16.00
strawberries
$3.00
pints
3
$9.00
2
$6.00
swiss chard/kale
$1.50
bunches
6
$9.00
6
$9.00
sunflowers
$3.00
bunches
3
$9.00
3
$9.00







Total Value of Pick-Your-Own Crops in Share:


FULL:
$216.50
SMALL:
$166.50





News From the Powisset Farm Kitchen:

October is off to a tasty start in the Powisset Farm Kitchen!

We harvested cabbage together and made two different types of alternative slaws.
Here’s what Powisset slaw makers are saying:

I wasn't expecting to learn anything because, as a mom, I have been cooking for 30 years. I have taken professional cooking classes and worked with some professional chefs over the years. That being said I picked up some new recipes and learned about some new vegetables and their uses. That was great fun.”

“As a novice cook, I learned so many great tips on using cutlery, strategies for chopping vegetables, and how to prepare ingredients for meals. This is knowledge that I can universally apply to my future cooking adventures!”

There are 3 more workshops this month! Sign up now as space is limited!

Tuesday, October 14th | 5:30-7:30PM
For the Pantry: Root Veggie Storage Tips & Tasty Recipes

Tuesday, October 21 | 5:30-7:30PM
For the Pantry: Freezing, Blanching & Storing Greens

Sunday, October 26 | 2-4PM
Field to Lunchbox: Creative Solutions for Lunchbox Boredom

If you have any questions, please email Rachel: rkaplan@ttor.org




Farm Stand and Winter CSA Hours:

The Powisset Farm stand is open until November 22nd!

Our hours are:
Tuesdays: 1:30-6:30pm and 
Saturdays: 10am-5pm
Please come visit us for all of your veggie needs!

The winter share pick up days are:

Saturday, October 25
Saturday, November 8
Saturday, November 22
Saturday, Deceber 13

All pick ups are between 10am-5pm
See you then!