Tag Archives: local farms

FarmBox Fresh: 9/19/2012

21 Sep

I picked some new things this week!  Here is what I got:

I got okra (thank you Gayle for sharing!), garlic, red leaf lettuce, green beans, zucchini, lemon cucumber, ugly duckling potatoes (not the prettiest potatoes, but still edible), kid size pumpkin, red & yellow cocktail tomato mix, Special Spelt bread, and red cocktail tomatoes. The pumpkin I will bake and puree at some point for my favorite fall pumpkin recipes.  We’ve been munching on the tomatoes.  The spelt bread was one he hadn’t tried yet, and it was great.  Very light, fluffy, moist bread.  They do any amazing job with their bread!  Now, it’s time to work on what to get for next week!

 

Note: I order a custom box and choose what I want in my box from their Web Store.  There may be variances in availability on different pick up days.

 

FarmBox Fresh: 9/12/2012

13 Sep

This week I went a little smaller with my box, I’ve been a little overwhelmed with fresh produce, so I have been trying to cut back to get a little break from all the food prep.  So, here is what I picked this week:

 

I got a bunch of carrots with greens, a blackberry apple pie, premium Italian basil, micro parsley, 2 lbs apples for juicing, a big ol’ beef tomato, and green beans.

This week, I decided it was time to try the pie.  I’ve heard good things about it from other participants here, and they were right!  It’s very good pie.  It’s not very big, but it’s worth it!  I’m very excited to have green beans again, they are really good, especially cooked with garlic.  I did make some apple pear juice with my juice extractor earlier this week that was a big hit with the kids, so they are excited to have more apples for juice.  I still have leeks, so I will use some parsley for more Potato Leek Soup.  I know I had a plan for the basil, but that’s escaping my mind at the moment, so if nothing else, I will make pesto!

 

Note: I order a custom box and choose what I want in my box from their Web Store.  There may be variances in availability on different pick up days.

FarmBox Fresh: 9/5/2012

6 Sep

This week, I was excited to have 14 other people get FarmBoxes!  Slowly keeps growing here!

Here is what I chose this week in my custom box:

 

This week, I chose radishes, the big ol’ beef tomato, Bartlett pears, green leaf lettuce, green chile peppers, Gala apples, Khorasan sandwich bread, baguette, and rhubarb.  I’m really looking forward to making something with the rhubarb, pie or a crisp, maybe with strawberries.  My girls are loving the pears and apples, and will devour the radishes.  I used the bread and tomato with some cheese for a grilled cheese and tomato sandwich.  The baguette is really good as well, I might spray with olive oil, rub with garlic, and broil it.  Or, just eat it, it’s great like the rest of their bread.

 

Note: I order a custom box and choose what I want in my box from their Web Store.  There may be variances in availability on different pick up days.

Farmer’s Market Finds: 8/30/2012

30 Aug

I haven’t been to the Farmer’s Market in WEEKS, but finally made it out there today.  My 3-year-old was so happy, she loves to go and wander around.  Plus, with her going to school now, she’s starting to get more social, so she interacts with people instead of hiding behind me.  So happy about that!

Anyway, back to the Farmer’s Market!  We didn’t get much, but here is what we did get:

 

Mesquite Jumbles from Big Skye Bakers.  Love these!

Pumpkin from B.A.S.I.C. Farm.  I know the owners, Christie and Clint Hardwick, from Bountiful Baskets, Christie runs the site on the opposite week of the site I help run, and I go out often to help volunteer at her site.  I had previously gotten onions and tomatoes from her, which were very good, and my daughter picked a pumpkin today.  They have a variety of other produce, plus sometimes eggs and goat milk products.  They grow organically.

Chevre in olive oil and herbs from Tweenstone Farm.  It says “Not” on the sticker because he has a hot and not hot version of this, and I got the not hot.  It’s very good, and I’m deciding what to do with it, possibly Bacon Wrapped Chicken.  Or, I will mix it with some chicken and pasta, making it like a creamy pasta sauce.

FarmBox Fresh: 8/22 and 8/29

30 Aug

I realized I never did post last week, so, I waited until I got yesterday’s box so I could just post them together.

Here is what I got last week:

Watermelon, red potatoes, Gala apples, a lemon cucumber, green leaf lettuce, zucchini, green beans, 1 pound vine ripened tomatoes, and coconut macaroons.  All of this was $28.75.  Coconut macaroons are one of my favorites, and these 3 got eaten in no time!  I made garlic green beans with the green beans, my daughter took sliced lemon cucumber to lunch one day.  The tomatoes I used to make a  tomato mushroom pasta sauce, and the zucchini made Zucchini Chocolate Chip Muffins.  The head of lettuce made a couple of great lunch salads for me.

Here is what I got this week:

 

I got 2 head of lettuce (yes, I love to make salads!), green beans, big ol’ beef tomato (GREAT addition to grilled cheese or perfect for BLTs), 1 pound red vine ripened tomatoes, white potatoes, dinner rolls, Gala apples, and Barlett pears (apples and pears are from Briggs and Eggers orchard, which is also organic).   One daughter had a pear, the other an apple in their lunches today.  I put the dinner rolls in the freezer, we’ll have those soon, but I didn’t want them to get moldy.  Excited to make green beans again, and the white potatoes are great boiled in salt as a side with dinner.

 

Note: I order a custom box and choose what I want in my box from their Web Store.  There may be variances in availability on different pick up days.

 

Lots of Produce!

22 Jul

This week, since I wasn’t going to be able to pick up a basket from Bountiful Baskets (I was doing a community car seat check at the same time), I didn’t participate this week.  So, I decided to once again pick up a FarmBox at Sunizona Family Farms again this week.  Instead of a standard box, I chose to get a Custom Box.  This means, that I went through their Web Store of items they currently have available to build my own box.  I selected 1 package Baby Heirloom Lettuce, 1 bunch Carrots, 1 Cucumber – Seedless, 1 head Purple-tinted Broccoli, 2 bunches Radish, 1 Squash – Patty Pan, 1 Big Ol’ Beef Tomato, 1 loaf Bread – Sprouted Khorasan Plus, and 1 1.5 lb bag Peaches – Sierra Rich.  My total was $28.25.  Here is how it all looked (also shown is a zucchini they gave me when I got there):

I was again happy with all that I got.  The peaches were not grown on their farm, but are from an orchard near them, Briggs & Eggers,  that is organic as well.  They are AMAZING peaches!  Very fresh and juicy.  The bread is again very good, this bread has added seeds and grains on top (hence, the Plus in the name), similar to the 9 grain bread that I usually get from Bountiful Baskets.  My husband immediately came home and used the bread to make a grilled cheese sandwich, also with the Big Ol’ Beef tomato.  I’m looking for a recipe to use the patty pan squash.  I’ve never had it, but I’m sure it’s similar to other squash.  Unfortunately, I don’t think I’ll be able to drive over this upcoming week, but I’m hoping to the week after.

After we were done at the farm, we headed to Willcox on the other side of I-10 to go to an orchard.  I had wanted to go to Briggs & Eggers, but we had already been in the car enough that I decided on Apple Annie’s, which also has some other goodies (homemade fudge!).  Right now, it’s peach harvest time, so we went through the orchard with a bucket and picked peaches right off the trees.  I ended up with about 9 lbs of peaches, which cost $14.

 

I will make a Peach Crisp and hopefully, some Peach Fruit Leather.  If I don’t get to make the fruit leather, I will probably freeze the peaches and make the fruit leather another time.  I haven’t had a chance to try one yet, but they look delicious.

Then, after getting all of that, I stopped in at Safeway and got even more produce!  They had 2 lb containers of blueberries for $5 again, plus lots of other produce on sale, along with my Just 4 U personalized deals, including a 20% off produce one time use coupon.  I spent $15.84, and here is what I got:

 

It is 1.41 lb broccoli crowns, 2.54 lb red seedless grapes, 1.39 lb black plums, 4 limes, 2 bunches radishes, 2.98 lb Gala apples, 1 head iceberg lettuce, 2 2-lb bags of baby carrots, and 2 lb blueberries.  Can you tell we like radishes in my house?  Well, I’m not a big fan, but my husband and 2 daughters are.  My youngest was excited to see plums, and half a bag of baby carrots is already gone between her and my older daughter munching on them.  Now, I would have preferred more of this to be organic since I’m trying to purchase more organic, but right now, my budget isn’t allowing it.  However, I’m still getting more produce in the house and snacking on this, not chips or other junk, so we’re getting there.  Baby steps, right?

Eggplant Bruschetta

14 Jul

I had a medium-sized eggplant from Bountiful Baskets and a small eggplant from my trip to Apple Annie’s yesterday, and I was searching for a way to make it.  I finally decided on a little  twist on bruschetta.  Most bruschettas that I have had, the tomato, basil, and mozzarella are cold, but I decided to make this hot and with the cheese melted.  It turned out really well!

Eggplant Bruschetta

What you need:

1 medium eggplant
Olive oil
Salt
3 tomatoes
2 tablespoons fresh basil, minced
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

How to make it:

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Cut the tops and ends off of eggplant and slice.  Line a baking sheet with foil, and lay eggplant slices out in a single layer on the baking sheet.  Brush or spray both sides of the eggplant with olive oil and season with salt to taste.  Bake in the preheated oven for 10 – 15 minutes.  Note: You could also grill the eggplant instead of roasting in the oven.

Meanwhile, chop tomatoes, removing seeds.  Mix together in a small bowl with the basil.

Remove eggplant from oven and turn oven to broil.   On each piece, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, then top each piece with some of the tomato mixture.  Finally, put mozzarella on each one.

Place eggplant on the pan 6 inches from the broiler, and heat about 5-7 minutes until cheese is melted and slightly browned.

Exploring Local Farms

13 Jul

Recently, I’ve had a strong desire to help support farms in my area.  I know that farming anywhere is hard, but in the dry climate of Arizona, I’m sure it’s even harder.  I already have bought from a very local farm and from our Farmer’s Market, but knew that there were more farms in our county that I wanted to see what they had to offer.  Today, a friend and I set out into the “country”.

Our first stop was Sunizona Family Farms.  They grow a variety of vegetables, some fruits, and micro-greens that are certified organic, and what they call veganically grown.  They use no animal products for growing, only plant-based materials.  They provide their produce mostly to the state of Arizona, available in Whole Foods and AJ’s Fine Foods, some farmer’s markets, and also through their FarmBox program.  The FarmBox program is a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program, a way to get their product out to people.  This is what I signed up for and drove out to the farm for today.  They have pick up locations in Phoenix or Tucson, plus pick up at their farm.  I opted to pick up at the farm so I could see that farm and to see what it would take to get a delivery to my city.

We were greeted by Janice, who got my box for me, and then also took us on a tour of the farm.  It was great to see where and how the food I’m eating is grown.  This time, I got the small standard box for $22, plus extra carrots for $2.50 and a loaf of Spouted Khorasan bread for $5.50.  I also got to sample some thumbprint cookies.  They also have a large box for $30 or an option to make a custom box of items available in their web store, with a $22 minimum total.  They also have a variety of bakery items as well, breads, cookies, pies, hamburger buns, dinner rolls, and pizza crust.  Here is a picture of all that I got:

I got beets, a red pepper, tomatoes (1 is missing because my husband had to try one as soon as I got home), chives, white onions, lettuce, cabbage, basil, and collard greens (which apparently didn’t make it into the picture).  You can also see the thumbprint cookies, the bread, and the carrots.  It all looks amazing, and I can’t wait to cook with and eat all of it.  I will definitely be going back, but probably every other week because it is a bit of a drive.  I also think that I will do a custom FarmBox instead, and pick what I want from the store, which I think is a great option to have.  I like that the program is flexible like that, I can pick up different locations, put a hold on my subscription, change my subscription, or add-on extra things each time I get a box.

We stopped for lunch, then headed to Apple Annie’s Produce and Pumpkins.  I have been to Apple Annie’s about once a year during their harvest season for the last few years.  They have the produce and pumpkins part that we visited today, plus an orchard nearby.  Both locations have produce they pick or you can go out and pick your own produce.  Today, I did a mix of their picked produce and you pick produce.  Here is what I got:

Green beans, eggplant, tomatoes, bell peppers, jalapenos, zucchini, and okra.  All of this cost $6.89!  I was pretty impressed with that price.

I also got 5 dozen ears of sweet corn for $26.99 to share with my friend.

They also had cantaloupe, watermelon, black eye peas, yellow squash, green chiles, and cucumbers available.  We had thought about stopping at the orchard as they have peaches available right now, but we’d been lucky in missing most of the rain storms in the area today and didn’t want to push our luck anymore.  I have a couple other farms I want to check out, and hopefully will get to soon.

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