Member message for Beneficial Farm, CSA for distribution of August 6th, 2015

Check out the Webstore:

Here is what we are planning for your Beneficial CSA Share for Thursday July 30th, 2015

Fennel from Talon de Gato

Rhubarb from Talon de Gato

Oakleaf Lettuce from Talon de Gato

Onions with tops from Talon de Gato

Zucchini from Mesa Top Farm

Org Ginger from Papohaku Farm, HI

 Better late than never!

Sorry everyone, it’s been a busy week for Thomas and Steve, so we are delayed getting the member message out to people.

News from Hill

Well last Thursday was cool enough outside that we didn’t need the trailer to keep the greens fresh, but we used it anyway. Until our cooler is built, the trailer will be crucial in keeping our shares and green out of the heat!


New on from Hillside

Mark is off and running with a few great dishes in the cafe! He treated us to the breakfast quesadilla last week, and it was amazing!

Breakfast Quesadilla

Mushroom Melt – Fresh Chanterelles & Oyster Mushrooms, Asparagus, Granny Smith Apples, Brie, and Port Reduction on House Made Bread. Stone Fruit Salad – Mixed Stone Fruit, Arugula, Fennel, tossed in Balsamic Vinaigrette.

A variety of specialty coffees, teas, and fruit smoothies at non-specialty prices. Check out the Jean-Claude, a French pressed butter coffee!

Hillside Market now offers our products 6 days a week to the community, as a local grocery store. Check out our selection of dairy, meats, grocery and frozen foods!

*Hillside is open ThursdayTuesday, 10am-5pm (Sunday 11am-4pm)



Volunteer with the CSA:

We are looking for a volunteer that can help us out on Thursdays, when we are prepping and packing shares. We generally need help between 8am-1pm, depending on the volunteer’s schedule. Tasks include weighing produce into shares, quality checking produce and bagging share bags.

We give our volunteers a full farm share for their 3 hours of volunteering with us, as well as all the insider knowledge of what is going on in the local food scenes!

If you, or someone you know is interested in more information, contact Colleen Warshawer: or Call/Text 505-470-1969

Albuquerque Deliveries:

We have begun a few deliveries to customers in ABQ, part of our plans to expand our CSA to other persons invested in local agriculture. If you have friends or family in ABQ, let them know we are working on a presence in the city.

Farmers and Share Updates

Oh, the summer crops are in full swing! Adam of TdG has a ton of great food coming in every week, MT’s squash production is now supplying 4 organizations, our southern growers are sending up some cool produce, Colorado farmers are growing enough to share with us, and chili season is right around the corner! It’s one of favorite and busiest times of the year, when we are bustling with great produce!

Summer Heat is upon us once again!

Delicate greens are the first affected by the heat, but never fear. If your greens or even roots in your share are dehydrated when you get them to your house, give them a soak in warm water for 15-30min and then put them in the crisper of your fridge. If the share item is a head of lettuce or long stem leafy green such as kale or chard, you can trim the base of the stalk much as you would a bunch of flowers to allow the plant to absorb water more directly.

*We are getting better at making changes to member’s share when there dietary preferences that you let us know about. If you see something in the share that you can’t have, or absolutely hate, send us an email and we can find a substitute, but remember that half the fun of the CSA is trying something new.

Home Delivery

We offer home delivery for a $10 charge, and any member who orders $50 or more will receive free deliver in the form of a credit, provided it’s not really out of route. One of the benefits of home delivery is that even if you’re not home when we come by, you can leave a cooler out for us to put your share in to keep it chilled. If you are interested in switching to Home delivery, email or call us.

Coming soon:

Members! We are trying to figure out what breads our members would like, and while we have our favorites, please send us a note on what types of bread you would like!

Colleen met with a local baker we think might be a great fit for our CSA, more to follow!

Keep passing along your input on marketplace offerings, Steve and Thomas have a few more contacts we are looking into.

EBT Update:

The store of our life, they sent us a dial up router machine, outdated, and now waiting on the new broadband version.

Farm and Marketplace News: 

Summer Sourcing: We are starting to see even more of our Northern farms producing, but we will still be mixing in Southern produce to ensure a full balance.

More about the food…

News and specials on the marketplace:

We are starting to get into our Summer crops, which will make having an accurate marketplace and regular share list more reliable. Occasionally, a product comes in that isn’t up to our standards for distribution, or is shorted by the farm, so contact us via email for credits/issues.

Special Deal on Peaches:

We are getting the slightly hail damaged peaches in this week, so for those who pre-ordered or order a case this week will receive them Thursday.

We are opening these peaches up for pre-order, and will distribute fruits as soon as they come down. 1 case of 20lbs for $35 or 2 cs for $60

Kale: On the marketplace

Chard: In your share and on the marketplace

Fennel: In your share and on the marketplace

Rhubarb: In your share and on the marketplace

Lettuce-Oakleaf: In your share and on the marketplace

Onions with Tops: in your share and on the marketplace

Biodynamic Ginger from HI: in your share and on the marketplace

Peaches: on the marketplace ( will be in shares if we run short on anything)

Chard: in your share and on the marketplace

Pepper: Green Chili, Poblano and Habanero pepper should be coming up, baring weather issues

Cantaloupes: on the marketplace

Cucumbers: on the marketplace

Summer Squash: Zucchini and yellow squash from MT on the marketplace

Tomatoes:  Grapes and clusters are on the marketplace

Red Bell Peppers: on the marketplace

Peach, Rhubarb & Ginger Crisp



  • 2 cups sliced peaches or nectarines (1/2-inch slices), fresh or frozen, peeled if desired
  • 2 cups sliced rhubarb (1/2-inch slices) or blueberries, fresh or frozen
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon minced crystallized ginger


  • 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup white whole-wheat flour (see Note)
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon minced crystallized ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9-inch shallow glass or ceramic baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. To prepare filling: Toss peaches (or nectarines) and rhubarb (or blueberries) with brown sugar and crystallized ginger. (If using frozen fruit, let stand for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, to thaw the fruit before transferring to the baking dish.) Transfer to the prepared baking dish and spread in an even layer.
  3. To prepare topping: Combine oats, pecans, flour, brown sugar, crystallized ginger and salt in a medium bowl. Drizzle butter and oil over the mixture and stir until evenly moistened. Sprinkle the topping over the fruit.
  4. Bake until the fruit is bubbly and the topping is browned, 35 to 50 minutes. Let cool for about 20 minutes before serving.

Crispy Cream-Braised Potatoes and Fennel

  • 3 yukon gold potatoes (about 1.5 pounds) – peeled and cut into irregular 1.5″ to 2″ chunks
  • 2 fennel bulbs (about 1.5 pounds) – trimmed (with tough or bruised outer layers removed), then cut lengthwise into wedges about 1.5” wide (leaving core intact)
  • About 2 to 3 cups of half-and-half or cream, or enough to cover the vegetables
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/4 teaspoon fennel seed
  • Kosher salt + freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 or 4 large springs of thyme, leaves removed and finely chopped
  • 1 large leafy sprig of rosemary, leaves removed and finely chopped
  • Heaping ¼ cup finely grated pecorino romano (or parmesan reggiano)
  • Zest from 1 small orange, finely grated
  • Olive oil
  1. In a 3 to 4 quart pan, combine potatoes, fennel wedges, bay leaf, and fennel seed. Add enough half-and-half to fully cover the potatoes and fennel. Season generously with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Over medium-high heat, bring the half-and-half to a simmer, then lower heat to just maintain the simmer. Cook until the potatoes and fennel are soft and tender, about 20 minutes. Take off the heat. The potatoes and fennel should be fully cooked at this point.
  2. While potatoes and fennel are braising, preheat broiler to medium-high. In a small bowl, combine rosemary, thyme, pecorino, and orange zest.
  3. Remove potatoes and fennel wedges from the half-and-half with a spider or slotted spoon, and transfer them to a gratin or casserole dish. Some of the half-and-half will cling to the vegetables, which is a good thing. Make sure to generously coat the bottom with olive oil to prevent sticking. Taste the potatoes and fennel for seasoning – if you need more salt or pepper, add them now. Toss with olive oil (about 1 tablespoon), then the herb-cheese-orange zest mixture. Arrange the potatoes and fennel wedges in a single layer to promote even browning.
  4. Place the casserole dish under the broiler (about 6 inches away from the source of heat). Broil for about 3 to 5 minutes, or until the potatoes and fennel are caramelized and crispy around the edges. (I typically brown the vegetables more than the ones in the picture above…just leave them under the broiler until they’ve reached your desired crispness!)

From the Mesa Top: August 6th, 2015,

Climatology 2015: The biggest rain if the monsoon season so far at Mesa Top last Wednesday night. Measuring almost 2 inches.  It began with a serious downpour with thunder and lightning, and then settled into 4 or 5 hours of steady rain.

After that there were a couple more days of cool and showery weather.

The pastures responded immediately with vigorous growth.  Dry again now. So the pattern of wet and dry continues.  Looking toward the weekend for resumed rain and showers.

From the Wild: The rain last week was enough, finally, to get the spade foot toads hopping.  There are two amphibians that are native to the mesa.  The tiger salamander and the spade foot toad.  When the ground is wet and the ponds begin to fill with water the individuals of these species come up from there deep, damp burrows and make a run for the ponds.  The nights are punctuated by the resonant croaking of the males, calling for mates.  This ritual can start as early as late May.  It is now near the end of the time window for mating, so the hatchlings this year do not have the chance of growing to maturity before they need to dig into the mud to wait for the next season’s rain.  Another heavy rain or two would help.

Cow stories:  Good Grass in all of the pastures.  It is now in the hands of the landowner at forest trust to gauge the growth and condition of the pastures against the remaining growth of this season, in order to determine when the cows have to go.  Most of the cows appeared Saturday all together at the water tanks.  They are looking great!  Little Arnold, the youngest of the lot, is grazing and romping around like a range cow.  He has left behind the dullness and listlessness that came from being confined and bottle fed in his first few days.  His adaptive process of nursing from behind Abigail whenever her heifer in also nursing   him well fed.

Beneficial birds.  Nothing new from the hen houses.  Enjoy the pullet eggs!

Cheese making update:   No new news from the cheese room / kitchen.

Thank you for your investment in family farmed, local and regional agriculture.  We appreciate your support as we work to improve the CSA as a vital element of our local and regional food system!

Our farms and farmers thank you for your support,

The Warshawer/Swendson/Agard Family

Beneficial Farm CSA


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