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From the Garden this Week…

From the Garden this Week…

Broccoli or Napa Cabbage, Winter Squash, Rutabagas, Brussels Sprouts Greens, Braising Greens, Dill, Parsley, Persimmons, Pomegranates, one Mandarin and Lemon

Coming Soon…Swiss Chard and Carrots

Using your Produce… by Julie Moreno

This week we need to clear out most of the remaining winter squash in our storage. We planted an heirloom variety of butternut squash that took a long time to grow and we ended up harvesting many of the squash when the plants froze, even though the outside was still green. Most of you will get one of these squash this week. Even though the outside is green, the squash is ready to eat. I cooked one last week to make sure and I was very surprised at the texture of the flesh. It should be light and fluffy. I was so impressed that I only want to grow this type of butternut next year. I included my favorite recipe for squash, roasting it first and then topping it with walnuts, goat cheese and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.

Roasted Butternut Squash with Walnuts and Goat Cheese

4-6 cups cubed butternut squash

2 tablespoons olive oil

½ teaspoon salt

¼ cup walnuts

salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

¼ cup crumbled goat cheese

1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

Preheat your oven to 425 °F. Toss the butternut squash cubes with the oil and ½ teaspoon salt. Spread out on a parchment-lined baking sheet and cook in the oven for about 25 minutes, until tender. In the same oven, while cooking the squash, toast the walnuts until fragrant, about 5 minutes. Let the nuts cool and chop coarsely.  Remove the squash from the oven and place on a serving platter. Top with the crumbled goat cheese, toasted walnuts and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.

Christmas Gift Baskets and Gift Certificates are Available

Please let us know if you need help for a friend or family. You can pick up a completed basket or we can provide you a certificate to present as a gift.

Winter Root Vegetables…

Root vegetables are a perfect root vegetable and an alternative to potatoes in the winter, when potatoes are out of season. For the root vegetable mash recipe, I included adding potatoes to increase the total quantity of the dish. You could make it will all rutabagas or with a combination of rutabagas and other root vegetables like carrots or even winter squash.

Rutabaga Dill Mash

2 rutabagas, peeled and cubed

1-2 russet potatoes, peeled and cubed


2-4 tablespoons butter

½ cup sour cream

2 tablespoons chopped dill

Put the rutabagas and potatoes in a medium pot and cover with cold water by at least an inch. Add 1 tablespoon of salt, and bring to a boil. Boil until the vegetables are fork tender (15 to 20 minutes). Drain in a colander and return rutabagas and potatoes to the pot, add the butter. Mash with a potato masher. Stir in the sour cream and dill. Taste and add salt if desired.

Metaphors of Soil and Soul … by Ronda May Melendez

During Monday weeding in the Garden, I realized a painful truth. There are things in life, as much as we may become numb to them, that are still in fact there and able to cause a surprising amount of pain. “Who is the instructor in this lesson,” you ask? Nettles! In past newsletters, I have written about the health benefits of nettles. Today, I will focus on the tension of reality. While there are, in fact, important benefits of nettles, they are, also, in truth, painful to encounter. What shocked me was that I was happily weeding and quite unaware of the assault that was about to occur. I thought my skin was properly protected because I was gloved up, had on long sleeves, pants, socks and boots. What I had not accounted for however, were movements that rearranged my gloves in proximity to my sleeves. But even beyond that, I had not seen the nettles in a while, and I had not assessed my environment fully. And that is when it happened, gloves and sleeves shifted, tender skin was exposed, and contact made! OUCHHHH. The onset of pain.

It took just a moment to realize the culprit. I had felt this type of pain before. I immediately knew what to attribute it to. Isn’t that just like life at such times? We experience pain that whispers of pain experienced long ago. Sometimes, the culprits are right there in front of our noses, just like the needling nettles this week. Perhaps, we have been aware. So, we “suit up” with appropriated armor and yet occasionally an external assault weapon finds a chink and pain is triggered. The lesson this week for me was first being aware of the environment (calmly) and then, maintaining a mindful awareness to myself in proximity to those things that trigger pain. Second, asking myself what I need to do to “shift back” those things in my life that may have shifted out of place and left me exposed. I need not fear the needling of nettles, but I do need to be aware of myself in their proximity and move accordingly.

“Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist on the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. 14 Stand firm therefore, having belted your waist with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having strapped on your feet the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 [b]in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:13-17).


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