This Week’s Harvest: More Winter Veggies, Specials on Sausage and Lamb, Amazing Pastas

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Wonderful!  Pete’s Greens is adding to their selection of frozen vegetables. In addition to Frozen Sweet Peppers and Sliced Zucchini, they have Green Kale, Spinach, and Cauliflower. These Organic vegetables are frozen immediately after harvest to preserve their full flavor and nutritional value.

Specials This Week:

For the second week, we are continuing our special introductory price on Artisan Meats of Vermont’s new English Style Bangers Sausage – normally $10.90, now $9.90.

We want you to try David and Michelle Valicenti’s amazing pasta – so we are reducing the price for this week on all of their selections.

Moroccan Braised Carrots & Chick Peas Ravioli
Brussels Sprouts w/Guanciale & Grana Padano Ravioli
Orange & Toasted Fennel Linguine
Blonde Garganelli
Gluten Free Fettuccine (simple and mild)

We have a nice supply of Half Butterflied Legs of Lamb and have put them on special too. If you have not tried Ben and Grace’s Lamb, you are in for a special treat. Grass fed – these lambs come from a herd that has been in Ben’s family for three generations and is one of the oldest “closed” flocks in the northeast. Normally these legs are priced at $17.50 per pound but this week they will be $15.50 per pound. Don’t miss out!

(a closed flock means that replacement breeding stock is bred on-farm – in other words, animals are not brought in from other breeders. This means a farmer can selectively breed for particular traits that suit his/her needs and the conditions of the farm. It also minimizes the danger of importing diseases on to the farm. This is the ideal practice on farms run on organic principles)

Home and Office Delivery Fee:

The fee for Delivery will be going up – starting this week – from $10 to $12. We have kept the fee at the same price for over two years, and even though we are charged by weight and extra bags – we have not passed that cost on to you. However, we are losing money on the service at this point, so we are forced to raise the fee to $12.  The good news is that the fee stays the same for any size order – so purchase more of your food from your partner farmers and happily opt out of the supermarket!

Cortland Apples are back this week along with your other favorites …
Macintosh
Macoun
Mutsu/Crispin
Spartan

Joe’s Soup this week, in addition to his Chicken Stock and Vegetable Broth:
Lemon Ginger Chicken Soup
Tomatillos Soup

Also new from Joe’s Kitchen is Chimichurri Sauce. See the description for great ideas on how to use this wonderful sauce as a marinade, dipping sauce, on meat, fish, tofu or vegetables.

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Vision and Voice

FarmersToYouHub_GregandEva3Greg Georgaklis founded Farmers To You as a solution to what he saw as the missing link in the building of a sane, just, and sustainable food system. Previously, Greg spent decades working with farming systems, distribution, and holistic business models, and is now considered an expert in these areas.

Greg’s vision is to create a viable model that partners highly skilled farmers from a particular geographic area, with urban families who are committed to sourcing the highest quality and freshest food. He envisions this model replicated throughout the US. He speaks for farmers, encouraging them to grow and produce for a consistent and reliable urban market. He insists that farmers charge a price that provides a living sustainable wage for themselves, their family, their farm laborers, and for proper care of their animals and land.

Eva Cahill jumped in to assist with Farmers To You shortly after its launch in 2010. She comes to this work with decades of experience as a biologist, educator, and writer.

Eva serves as “the voice” for Farmers To You and brings wisdom and clarity to conversations about farming, food and family. She encourages families to rekindle the hearth ~ by bringing more consciousness to meal planning, eating with the seasons, looking anew at family roles and responsibilities, and creating new ways of living within a context of what is in balance. She believes the kitchen is the heart of the home, a place where every family member is encouraged to participate in the delight of preparing and sharing outstanding, fresh, highly nutritious food.

Eva and Greg are about to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary, and have three children, Erica (23), Scott (22) and Harry (16). They co-own Farmers To You, and thrive on their partnership and their collaboration with the dedicated Farmers To You Team, and all the wonderful families and farmers that are a part of Farmers To You.

 

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Farmers To You is growing!

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We are thrilled to announce Cornelia Hoskin has recently joined our team as Director of PR and Outreach. She is creating a media strategy to “build the tribe” in Greater Boston though print media, social media, radio, local events and speaking engagements.

A serial entrepreneur, Cornelia Hoskin has founded two food companies and is currently helping her husband build a construction and design business. A seasoned marketer, she believes that the greatest vehicles for change are compelling stories and enriching experiences. Most recently, she was the Marketing Director of the national nonprofit, Farm Aid, moving to that role after building the organization’s online community for do-it-yourselfers, HOMEGROWN.org. Cornelia recently joined the Board at Red Tomato, and also holds an MBA from Boston University School of Management. She lives, and picks up her Farmers To You order, in Jamaica Plain with her husband, son, and puppy named Owl. She can be reached at cornelia@farmerstoyou.com and is out and about on Social Media. Look for her there.

 

Celeste.Beyer

Welcome also to Celeste Beyer, formerly part of the “Pick Crew”.  She is accountable for logistics and communication once the trucks pull away from our Vermont Hub, and is spending every Wednesday and Thursday in the Boston area supporting Site Hosts, Drivers, Van Drivers, and Partners Families.

Celeste grew up in the heart of Vermont and completed a semester at Kroka Expeditions. She then moved on to receive her Bachelor’s Degree in Sustainable Agriculture and Natural Resources at Berea College in Kentucky. Her work experience includes permaculture, farming, early education, therapeutic mentoring, and social therapy, and her passion for food systems and building community continues to motivate and inspire her every day.

Celeste recently returned to Central Vermont after completing a solo 2,000-mile trek along the Appalachian Trail. She is now very excited to be a part of the team at Farmers To You and join the effort to build resilient food systems and resilient communities by helping to build relationships between families and farmers in New England. She can be reached at celeste@farmerstoyou.com.

 

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This Week’s Harvest: Colorful Roots, Steaks, Fresh Fish, New Sausage and Turkey Options

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Vegetables:

Pete’s Greens has added Pea Shoots to their wonderful Mixed Shoots (Sunflower and Radish) which were offered last week. Divine and alive!

Our partner farmers struggle to grow greens in our current extreme dark and cold (minus 20 degrees this week at night). Mesclun and Spinach will not be available this week. As partner Lee Blackwell at Blackwell Roots Farm says “they are in lockdown!”

New this week from Jericho Settlers Farm:
Rutabaga
Hakurei Salad Turnips

Purple Top Turnips are back this week from River Berry Farm and David and Jane also have Purple Potatoes for us.

Apples from Champlain Orchards:
Macintosh – our favorite old standby, excellent for sauce
Macoun – back again
Gala replaces Galarina this week (really the same apple)
Fuji – New this week
Mutzu/Crispin
Spartan

Woodbourne Farm is delivering a fresh batch of beef this week with a few new additions:
Crosscut shanks
Short Ribs
Delmonico Steaks
NY Strip Steaks
Sirloin Steaks
Flank Steaks
Skirt Steaks
Steak Tips/Kabobs
Stew Meat
And of course the most amazing Ground Beef

All 100% grass fed and finished, Devon Beef

Our Fresh Catch from Red’s Best Fish:
Fresh Flounder – Jared is confident we will have Flounder this coming week.
Fresh White Fish
Bay Scallops
Sea Scallops

Let us know what you think of the fish – please write a review!

Chicken and Turkey from Misty Knoll Farms: two new items by your request!
Boneless Turkey Thigh
Turkey Thigh (bone in)

For those who never get enough of the dwindling dark meat on those holiday turkeys!

Pasta from Valicenti Organico:

Have you tried David and Michelle’s sauces yet?

Red Gravy – David and Michelle’s signature Red Gravy tomato-basil sauce is made from their own tomatoes and basil. Cooked over night in small batches, it combines a developed richness from lots of fine extra virgin olive oil, with a brightness from the newly harvested tomatoes and their fresh basil – added just before the sauce is put into jars.

Special Pricing this week – Usually $9.75 Special $7.90

Golden Gravy – David and Michelle’s Golden Gravy is a delicious savory pasta sauce made from their home grown butternut squash simmered in a rich vegetable stock with our their own caramelized fennel, fresh herbs, a touch of Marsala wine and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.

Special Pricing this week – Usually $10.50 Special $8.90

This Week’s Pasta:
Maple Roasted Pumpkin & Brie Ravioli
Toasted Cauliflower w/Golden Raisins & Grana Ravioli
Blonde Lumache
Nutmeg Pappardelle
Gluten Free Roasted Red Pepper Casarecci

Artisan Meats of Vermont has a new sausage!
Cider Bangers: local pork with just a touch of cinnamon and ginger, featuring Citizen Cider Unified Press hard cider and pane toscano bread crumbs from La Panciata bakery. This is a traditional English sausage – perhaps familiar to us from the comfort combination of “Bangers and Mashed”. Introductory Special for two weeks: $9.90 per pound (regular price $10.90 per pound)

Great at breakfast or – of course – with Butterball mashed potatoes.

Ingredients: Pork, Pork Fat, Salt, Cider, black pepper, cinnamon, ginger, natural casing.

Joe’s Soups:
Lemon Ginger Chicken
Thai Coconut Curry Squash
Tomato Sauce is back!

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This Week’s Harvest: Winter Greens and Eggs, Fantastic Lamb and Fresh Fish

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I love this work.

For several days, I’ve been finding more eggs for you, speaking to farmers and producers about costs, and learning the nuances of winter storage. Let’s dig right in.

Mid-Winter Eggs and Vegetables
We dug deeper for more Vegetables and Eggs –  with success. Dog River Farm of Berlin, VT is back with Eggs and Sweet Dumpling Squash, and several other nearby farms will keep us overflowing with Garlic and Shallots  through the winter months.

Jericho Settlers Farm has joined our partnership to provide you with Eggs into the future.

Winter Greens
Pete’s Greens has started to harvest their Mixed Shoots (Sunflower and Radish) in addition to their Winter Mesclun Mix.  What’s better than fresh local soil-grown greens in the depths of winter?

Lamb
We continue to have fantastic Lamb from Tamarack Vermont Sheep Farm: Half Boneless Butterflied Legs, Chops, Shanks, Stew Meat, and Ground Lamb

Fruit and Nuts
It has been so inspiring working with our partner farmers Tierra Farm on their wonderful dried fruit, nuts, and chocolate. They source from small sustainable family farms that they have maintained a relationship with for many years – very similar to what we do here at Farmers To You. The only difference is that, because we have so few New England grown  nuts, they source from all over the world. We decided that even though nuts were not local, we needed to add them to our mix because:

  • They are an important source of fat and protein for many of our vegetarian and vegan families
  • Tierra Farms shares our ethics and mission around sustainable agriculture and fair pricing, and enduring relationships!
  • Given the high value to weight ratio of nuts, dried fruit, chocolate (and coffee),transportation impacts are much less, for instance, than heavy apples or veggies from the west coast.
  • The quality is outstanding – these are by far the freshest and most flavorful nuts I have had – period!

That said – weather and climate change are creating some serious supply issues – we have been out of Apricots for some time because these are primarily produced in Turkey where they had a devastating freeze of most of their crop.  (this is also why Red Hen’s Apricot Whole Wheat Bread will also not be available until the new crop arrives)  Furthermore,  a drought in California  has affected the Almond, Grape (Raisins), Walnuts and Pistachios.  This simply means that the supply is constrained and prices will go up.  Because we price based on the cost we pay the farmers, the increase you will see is the increase the farmers need to get to help make up for the loss in volume of their crop.  Of course they never do make it up, but every little bit helps.

Apples from Champlain Orchards
Macintosh
Galarina
Mutzu/Crispin
Spartan

Have you wondered why apple varieties from Champlain Orchards come and go from week to week?

Bill and Andrea have perfected the art of winter apple storage, and their story is fascinating. Apples are stored in a number of “rooms” that have controlled atmospheres.  Several factors cause apples to ripen:  temperature, humidity, and oxygen.  If you keep temperature and oxygen at a low level, then the fruit won’t ripen.  So now the reason for this explanation …

Once the rooms are opened, Bill and Andrea have to sell all the apples quickly because when the apples hit the normal oxygenated atmosphere – they quickly begin to ripen.  And since the rooms have almost no oxygen in them – you can’t breath  - so they have to be fully opened and aired out so people can get to the apples to bag them, and send them to you.

This is also why when you get your apples – put them in the fridge right away, as they will keep much longer in cool temperatures.

Fresh Fish Catch from Red’s Best
We were pleased with how our restart with Red’s Best went last week – and would love to hear from you.

This week we will repeat the two categories of fish and scallops, and again on Monday inform you of the actual fish you are getting.  Everything comes right from the waters and bays just to your east.

Fresh White Fish Catch
Fresh Flounder Catch
Sea Scallops
Bay Scallops

New Soup from Joe at Screamin Ridge Farm
Peppered Cabbage with Nitrate Free Smoked Pork

Pasta from Valicenti Organico
Roasted Eggplant & Tomato w/Mozzarella di Bufala & Basil Ravioli
Toasted Cauliflower w/Golden Raisins & Grana Padano Ravioli
Cracked Black Pepper & Rosemary Tagliatelle
Blonde Rotini
Gluten Free Lemon Thyme Fettuccine

Price changes this week:

Red Hen Baking Company has seen both the price of flour, nuts, and seeds rise significantly of late due to drought and early frosts, so the prices of their bread have been increased correspondingly starting this week.

Eggs – due to the rise in grain pricing and the cost of keeping hens over the winter months, we have raised the price of eggs and correspondingly what we pay to our partner farmers so we can increase our reliability and supply for you.

Raising prices is always difficult as we understand how this affects you, our family partners.  We only do this when after lengthy discussions with our partner farmers we both realize that it is necessary to remain sustainable.  The difference with the Farmers To You model is that each price is based on the cost of producing an item with the addition of the cost of getting it to you each week.  We will never raise a price just because an item is in high demand or short supply.

Thank you for understanding and partnership.

~  Greg

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