What’s In Your Box? Week 3

LOGO FARMERS WIFE REAL

Hey all! Hope you all are having a great week! I loved seeing a large number of you on Tuesday….thank you for your support for our farm. The garden garden is really coming to life now and there are more colors popping up everywhere! It’s the time of year where new varieties of produce are slowly ripening and getting ready to harvest…but not everything is ready all at once yet. Therefore, boxes may not look identical this week.  Here’s a look at your week #3 staples…..

sugar snap peas

kale

swiss chard

salad greens

basil

green onions/ bunching onions

radishes

parsley

cabbage leaves  (we are finishing up the plants this week)

new potatoes

*new potatoes have thin, wispy skins and a crisp, waxy texture. They are young potatoes and  are known to keep their shape once cooked and cut.  They are also sweeter because their sugar has not yet converted to starch. Since they are potatoes that are dug up slightly early, they are not for storage since their skin hasn’t hardened off, but fresh cooking  instead.

A labeled pictured of your box will be sent out shortly to help identify everything as well:) 

***other produce ripening in the garden: broccoli, cauliflower, cucumbers, green peppers, cabbage so you may start to see these making an appearance in your boxes

Here are a few recipe ideas for you this week:)

Buttery Parsley Potatoes

The Best Buttery Parsley Potatoes | #easy #recipe #boiled foodiecrush.com

Basil Garlic Aoili

Basil Garlic Aioli sauce made from scratch

Sea Salt and Garlic Kale Chips

No fail, crispy kale chips every time! Sea Salt and Garlic Kale Chips recipe from thebusybaker.ca

Lemon and Basil Baked Salmon

Basil & lemon baked salmon in foil is a healthy salmon recipe to make that is low-carb, Paleo and a gluten-free dinner option for the whole family.. This seafood recipe is a quick meal full of omega-3s and healthy fats.

 

 

I love seeing what you guys make each week! Thanks so much for sharing….please keep the recipes coming !!

Looking forward to seeing some of you today! Make it a great one, friends!

Stay tuned for a picture of your box later today:)

 

 

 

 

 

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10 Fun Facts from the Garden

LOGO FARMERS WIFE REAL

Hey y’all! It’s Friday….that means another blog post. I hope you are all having a great start to your summer! Hard to believe the summer solstice is right around the corner.

I love talking garden talk with people. Not because I’m an expert or even come close to knowing it all…but because you always seem to learn something new when talking all things plants. Tricks people have learned from their grandfathers….new varieties of produce that grow easily….what NOT to do. It’s just fun. Farming/gardening is so awesome because it’s something that remains nostalgic while welcoming new practices along the way. There are some memories and tricks that are simply classic and need not ever to be changed….such as an heirloom variety of tomatoes passed down from generations, and there are also new techniques to simply make the job easier. Who doesn’t want a little more ease in their day? No shame in that, my friends.

So today, I just wanted to highlight a few fun facts from the garden that you might find interesting. Maybe at your next summer cookout you can bust out all the fun garden talk and you’ll be the coolest plant nerd at the party (cool and nerd can go together, right? )

Fun Fact 1:

Basil is a great companion plant to tomatoes. Why? It helps ward of those pesky tomato hornworms and is also known to bring out and/or improve the delicious flavor of your tomatoes! source

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Fun Fact 2:

As I look and see the vegetable garden starting to flower, I can’t even fathom this…..For bees to make a pound of honey, they must tap 2 million flowers! source

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Fun Fact 3:

Bell peppers have double the amount of vitamin C than citrus fruits. source

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Fun Fact 4:

A tablespoon of soil has more living organisms in it than all the people on Earth. source

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Fun Fact 5:

When a virus changed the color of tulips in Holland in 1637, people believed that a new type of plant had been discovered—which, in turn, led to a full-blown tulip craze. During this time, one of the prices for a single bulb included a load of grain, 1,000 pounds of cheese, 12 sheep, 10 oxen, 5 pigs, 4 barrels of beer, 2 tubs of butter, 2 hogsheads of wine, a suit of clothes, and a silver cup. Can you even believe it?? source

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Fun Fact 6:

Several studies have been done with respect to the effects of music on plant growth. Many of these experiments show the plants actually growing away from rock and roll music, almost as if they are trying to escape the sound. That’s craziness to me. source

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Fun Fact 7:

World Naked Gardening Day is celebrated on the first Saturday in May. It aims to promote harmony and peace with nature……gives a new visual to “tiptoe through the tulips.” ……Mark those 2019 calendars! 😉 source

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Fun Fact 8:

Radishes were payed as “wages” to the ancient Egyptians as they built the pyramids. source

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Fun Fact 9:

If you ever have seeds from a previous year and you wondering if they are even worth planting ….you can test the germination by planting them on a wet paper towel to see how they do first.  Save time and space in the garden  source

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Fun Fact 10:

Rumor has it that if you make a mistake with pen, you can erase it with the outside of a cucumber!? A great functional snack.  source

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Welp, there you have it. Now you can be the coolest person at the party spouting your fun gardening knowledge…or maybe just learned something new. The moral of the story is….Never stop learning. Ask questions. Talk to others…and have fun!

Cheers to the weekend, friends!

Image may contain: 4 people, people smiling, child, outdoor and nature

 

 

What’s In Your Box? Week 2

Good Morning ! I hope you’ve all had fun sorting through your boxes from the first week. Thanks for being patient with me while I was working out the kinks of delivery and fulfilling orders . Always a whirlwind of a week…and so much fun!

 

As I’ve mentioned before…the season always starts out heavy on the greens, and yes, the boxes are lighter than the rest of the season. We were so excited to start a week earlier than normal this year, too….even with the crazy Michigan spring we experienced. Those of you who have been with us know this won’t be the case as the season progresses. Our new 1/2 bushel boxes may pose a challenge with fitting all the goods in..so don’t be surprised if the boxes make a switch later in the season.

I will be sending out an email with pictures of each item in your box at harvest time as well, hopefully this will help with identifying all of the items in your box. Here’s what you can look forward to for week 2!

Collards

Wheat Grass (your own growing pot)

Snap Peas

Mint

Michihili Cabbage leaves

Head Lettuce

Green Onions

Radishes

We are also offering a flower bouquet option this season! We are teaming up with Casey Grysen, owner of Bella’s Blooms who has offered to create bouquets on a weekly basis to whoever would like to order one. Her current bouquet would look similar to these and are $8 each. Please email Casey by Sunday night before delivery to put in your order at    grysen.casey@gmail.com.

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Alright ! Let’s look a few recipe options to try this week:)

Garlic Roasted Radishes

Garlic Roasted Radishes on a white plate

I found this fun blog that has a great explanation on how to cook your michihili cabbage leaves

Sauteed Collard Greens

Sauteed Collard Greens. Leafy cruciferous greens are the healthiest thing for you!

Sugar Snap Pea and Mushroom Sautee

 

Sugar Snap Pea and Mushroom Sauté

Mint Smoothie Ideas : Mint Chocolate Chip

11. Mint Chocolate Chip #greatist http://greatist.com/eat/simple-smoothie-recipes

And how fun are these herbal ice cubes???

How to Juice Wheat Grass without a Juicer

Alright! Looks like a fun lineup for week 2:)

Hope you all have a great weekend!!!

~Janine, The Farmer’s Wife

Vegetable Spotlight: Collards

Maybe you’ve heard of them…..some southern movie scene where you’ve heard them ordered in a restaurant or cooked up for a homemade meal. Maybe your grandma makes them best? Whichever stage in your “collards” relationship you are in, I am excited to share with you the ins and outs of this powerhouse plant.
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Collard greens are part of the cruciferous vegetable family. In this family you will also find bok choy, brussels sprouts, broccoli, kale, cabbage, turnips and rutabaga.  This family of vegetables tend to be high in nutrients and low in calories. Sounds like a win-win to me! 

So what are the health benefits of eating them?

Nutrition Basics

One cup of boiled collard greens contains :

63 calories

5 grams protien

1 gram of fat

11 grams of carbohydrates

8 grams of fiber

1 gram of sugar

It provides over 250 % of a person’s daily needs for vitamin A, over 50 % of vitamin C, and 26 % of calcium. Collard greens are also rich source of vitamin K.

 

Skin and Hair

By eating collards and other cruciferous veggies, you are promoting healthy complexion and hair and increasing your energy. This is because  because of a high vitamin A content. Vitamin A is needed for sebum production, and this keeps hair moisturized and is also necessary for the growth of all bodily tissues.

One cup of boiled collard greens provides over 50% of a persons daily needs of Vitamin C as well, which is needed for the building of collagen. Collagen provides  structure to skin and hair.

Hair loss is commonly caused by an iron-deficiency in the body. By eating foods such as collard greens, spinach, eggs and tuna you will be doing yourself a favor by adding iron to your diet.

One cup of boiled collared greens also provides over 100% of the daily recommended intake of vitamin K ….. 1 cup! This vitamin improves calcium absorption in your body. When a low intake of vitamin K is present, you are at a higher risk for bone fractures, and with our daughter just getting her cast off from breaking her wrist…it is our hope to stay as far away from a cast as possible in the years to come. Calcium is so important for the body.

 

Diabetes and liver function

The recommended intake for fiber for women is  22.4 to 28 grams of fiber a day and 28 to 33.6 grams a day for men. 1 cup of boiled collard greens provides about 8 grams of fiber. Studies have shown that people with type 1 diabetes consuming high-fiber diets have lower blood glucose levels. Better levels of blood sugar, lipids and insulin may be present in those with type 2 diabetes.

The antioxidant, alpha-lipoic acid, that is found in collard greens can also lower glucose levels and aids in regenerating liver tissue in the body.

Digestion

Collard greens are high in both fiber and water content. I think we all know that these 2 things help to prevent the dreaded constipation while promoting regularity in the digestive tract.

Your mood and Sleep

Feel-good hormones, also known as serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine are so important for our mood. They also regulate sleep and appetite within the body. Folate, which is found in collard greens (specifically in the choline in the greens) may help with depression and prevent excess homosysteine from forming in the body. Too much of this stuff can interfere with the production of those necessary feel-good hormones.

How should you eat them?

Collard greens should have firm, deep green leaves. Smaller leaves will be tenderer and have a milder flavor. Collard greens can be kept fresh in the refrigerator.

Steaming collard greens for 10 minutes or less means they will still have their nutrients. Peppers, chopped onions, herbs, and spices can be used to season them.

They can be enjoyed raw in salads or on sandwiches or wraps, braised, boiled, sautéed, or added to soups and casseroles.

A handful of collard greens can also be added to a favorite smoothie. An easy way to add more health benefits without strong flavor.

 

 

Wow! What a powerhouse. It almost makes you WANT to eat them more, am I right? I shared an tutorial on how to use collard greens as a wrap in our week 1 share post…so I’ll leave it here for you as well:) I hope you all have a great weekend and are enjoying all of those school year-end activities ! Until next time…. go try some collard greens!!

IMG_4692 (500x333)Collard Wrap Tutorial

 

~Janine, The Farmer’s Wife

LOGO FARMERS WIFE REAL

Information found for this blog found at : healthyeating/sfgate.com

whfoods.com  (World’s Healthiest Foods)

What’s In Your Box? Week 1

Good morning!  It’s finally here…..your produce list for week one of the CSA shares. I hope you guys are as excited as I am …..as the school year is coming to a close, it’s really starting to feel like summer around here!

Anyone else doing the happy dance that we got a little rain shower last night? With the intense heat the past week, its definitely a boost of energy to see the plants get a little break. Some love the heat….others…not so much.

As late spring usually looks in Michigan gardens, the boxes next week will be full of greens. It’s a great time to start getting familiar with a few items you’ve may have never used in the kitchen before because these staples usually make their way into boxes throughout the summer.

Here’s the lineup:

collards

spinach

dinosaur kale

curly kale

kohlrabi

lettuce

swiss chard

Bok choy

mint

(possibly your own wheatgrass container depending on when my seed arrives, but that’ll be next week for sure)

Some of you love this time of year…while others just sort of  barrel through it knowing that the summer harvest of variety is on its way….here’s a fun little article I found about greens and why we should be eating them.

Why we should all be eating more Leafy Greens

Dark Leafy Greens are one of the most nutritious, inexpensive and easy to cook real foods! You can almost always find leafy greens like Kale, Spinach, Swiss Chard, Collards and more at most Farmers Markets. Here's how to cook leafy greens along with some nutrition facts...

Below I have also included recipes to help give you ideas of what to do with your goodies this week. I LOVE to hear what you make with your goods…so please share them with me as you make them! It’s fun to share ideas with each other to inspire ways to utilize our boxes the best we can.  Also, please check out our website to see the best ways to store and prepare some of the produce you’ll be receiving here: The Farmer’s Wife CSA

Bok Choy 101

Grilled Boy Choy with Sesame Maple Marinade

Roasted Potato and Kohlrabi Salad

Roasted potato and kohlrabi salad from @sweetphi

Kale and Kohlrabi Salad

kale.kohlrabi.salad

Sauteed Swiss Chard

Collard Wrap Tutorial

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Energy Boosting Green Smoothie

I am looking forward to hitting the ground running with you all next week. Excited to seeing familiar faces and meeting new. Thanks again for being part of our farm, I love my job and owe it all to you! Make it a great day, friends!

~Janine, the Farmer’s Wife

 

Hang on while I overthink about it….

Good Morning! I’m writing this on a beautiful Friday morning and it is LIGHT out before 6 am …..which means, Welcome Summer!

These long, sunny days have been so nice after the gloomy and wet stretch of weather we were in. Today’s topic is about trying new things.

Have you tried anything new lately ? Out of your comfort zone? Against the “norm” of what you consider your daily routine? If you said yes, that’s great! Hopefully your are reaping the benefits of feeling accomplished or inspired…but it is possible you are feeling the “ouch factor” of a plan gone wrong, or not the way you had intended it to go. It happens! What matters is what you learn from it and how you respond to the situation.

I am a recovering people-pleaser AND overthinker.  Double whammy….but if you think about it…they can go hand in hand. What if they don’t like what I have to say? What if they don’t like me? What if the project doesn’t turn out ? How is that going to look? yada yada yada………

I have one of those catchy felt boards in my kitchen….you know, where you can change the letters to make them say something inspiring or quirky? A while back mine read, “Hang on while I overthink about it,” as a humble reminder to myself to NOT overthink about it. I am a work in progress.

So what does this have to do with gardening or farming…or anything you might be following this blog for???

If you are local, you’ve probably seen that we were running a sale at our farm this week on the over abundance of vegetable and herb starters we had planted for our garden. It has been so fun meeting many of you and catching up on life, while doing the usual “garden talk.” I have heard so many people say….” I’d love to have a garden but I don’t know anything about it,” or ” I would never eat that.” I totally get it. Perhaps you’ve tried a garden before and simply didn’t enjoy it…THAT’S OK! Besides, I have a job because people allow me to grow food for them in our garden:) My hope, however, is that you don’t “not try” something just because you think you can’t. Just so you know…there is NO PERFECT WAY to grow something. Mother nature, among so many other factors, play a huge role in our gardens year to year….no season is the same. Some years certain things thrive, while other years they struggle. We do a little reading, rotate and companion plant, and try it again! Either way, I usually learn something along the way.

When it comes to trying new varieties of vegetables….have you tried to prepare something multiple ways? While I never want to sound like “the mom forcing everyone to eat their vegetables,” or to proclaim that my family never has takeout pizza night or the occasional trip to McDonalds, I do know that by eating a wide variety of vegetables from the garden I feel my best and love the satisfaction of knowing I’m taking care of my health. I have learned to love so many different vegetables in the past few years that I had never heard of …simply by trying new ways to prepare them. Yes, there are a few things that I don’t prefer…but they are all worth a TRY. Besides, if you are trying to encourage the little ones in your life to eat healthy, they are going to be watching YOU to do the same.

This spring weather was a doozy. Cold, wet, cloudy….not the perfect recipe for a happy farmer. I feel for the large farms, running out of days to get their corn and soybeans in the ground as they depend on so many long sunny days for growth ….while most farmers are in the same boat, it is still so frustrating! For me, however, I can control a little more of that but creating spaces within the garden I can cover or raise the beds where it gets too wet. I did, however take a gamble this spring by starting things about 4 weeks earlier than I usually do to really make sure we had a jumpstart on the season. The week after I planted our tomatoes the weather was in the 40s and we saw rain for 5 days straight. What in the world did I do? Well…fast forward a few weeks and Thanks be to God that they have all pulled through and are actually thriving! It doesn’t always happen like this , but I took the chance (and I did think it through just enough to pull the trigger) . I knew that if I failed I had more tomatoes to replace them with, but I wanted to try.

Maybe this is a silly analogy…but to me it’s relative to my life right now. There have been situations I have lost sleep over; worrying, wondering, over-thinking. But I am slowly learning to simply educate myself, make a valiant effort, and pray for the best. That’s all we can really do sometimes. So obviously, I want to encourage you all to try to grow something or try something new in the kitchen….but if that’s not “your thing” then what’s something else you can take a chance on today? Is there something you’ve been given a passion for but have spent too much time thinking about all of the ways you could fail? STOP! Stop doubting yourself. If there’s anything I’ve learned and believe with my whole heart is that we have not been given desires or dreams by chance. There’s a reason we were created the way we were and we all have a passion for something. Stop overthinking and take the leap. It might not always be perfect or beautiful…but is anything, really? I sure hope not because I don’t think a “perfect” life would be fun for anybody.

I’m looking forward to a sunny weekend here and will be paying my respects to those who have fought for and/or are continuing to fight for or country. Also, thank you to those who stopped at the sale yesterday…we are open today from 12-4 🙂

Blessings!

Janine, the Farmer’s Wife

 

 

All About Beets

Oh hey! It’s Friday!

I’ve literally been thinking its been Thursday for some reason this entire day…anyone else with me?

Tonight we’re talking beets…… Why eat them? How can I cook them?

 

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I was 28 when I tried my first beet. For real. They were rarely ever served anywhere that I would have been eating and there’s no way I’d ever buy one from the store!? What do I do with one and I hear they just taste like earth!? I also heard they leave a nasty red mess all over your counter…..

If you are in this same boat, I’d like you to know that there is still hope. Nowadays, I am a beet-loving fool and am sure to add them to dishes I cook for my family throughout the week. If health facts perhaps sell you on the idea of trying them…let me throw some fun facts out there to ponder…and a little warning for your first encounter with them….

  1. Beets are an excellent source of several vitamins and minerals, including folate and manganese. Folate helps to produce red blood cells and prevent anemia.  Folate is also important for synthesizing and repairing DNA as well as helping with cell division and growth, such as during pregnancy or infancy.

    Due to high levels of iron, folate, and betaine, beets are sometimes referred to as “crimson spinach” as they pack the powerful nutrients that fill Popeye’s favorite meal.

  2. Cardiovascular Disease The nitrates in beet juice which are converted into nitric oxide in your body, which helps you relax your blood vessels. This, in turn, can reduce blood pressure, lowering your risk of cardiovascular disease.

     

  3. Fighting Inflammation The betaines (pronounced like bee-ta-eens) within beets helps protects cells from environmental stress. Betaine is unique to beets and this nutrient helps to guard cells, proteins, and enzymes from environmental stress while fighting inflammation in internal organs and preventing all sorts of inflammation-based chronic diseases (i.e., cardiovascular disease).

     

  4. Detox Beets have often been a staple of a detox diet, and are a great help to your liver. You’re getting plenty of antioxidants from beets and the betains (Bee-ta-eens) found within beets will help your liver better process toxins.

     

     

     

     

    ::: WARNING ::: One other thing you should know. The red colour compound in beets known as betanin, is NOT broken down in the body. High concentrations may mean that things are going to be a little colorful at the end of the day (in your bowel movements). Don’t be concerned though, the red color of your stool is harmless and will cease once the beets are completely out of your system. (this always makes for a fun conversation with your kids:)

 

“Ok great…so I know they are good for me….but how the heck should I eat them ?”

Beets can be prepared in so many different ways….sliced, raw, cooked , pickled…you name it! Here are just a few recipe ideas to try ……

How to Roast Beets Perfectly Every Single Time

Coconut Oil Roasted Beets (Vegetable Candy)

Coconut Oil Roasted Beets recipe. I like to call these beets Vegetable Candy! They are perfect sweet and caramelized. I could eat the whole bowl myself! Beets have amazing detox properties--this is a great way to eat them!

Beet the Cold Power Smoothie

Beet the cold power smoothie filled with beets, blueberries, lime juice and chia seeds. The perfect healthy & refreshing detox smoothie.

Beet, Arugula & Goat Cheese Grilled Cheese

Honey Glazed Brussels Sprouts and Beets

Honey-Glazed Brussels Sprouts and Beets with walnuts and gorgonzola - a healthy side dish

Ok there we go! Just a few different ways to prepare beets. If you already love beets….awesome ! We are looking forward to multiple varieties in the garden this year. If not…which recipe are you going to try next week? Would love to hear your feedback! Just remember….that color passing through your body….totally normal . 

I hope you all have an awesome weekend! We are so thankful for each and everyone of you. Blessings!