Member message for Beneficial Farm, CSA for distribution of October 1st, 2015

Check out the Webstore:

Here is what we are planning for your Beneficial CSA Share for Thursday October 1st, 2015

Romaine Lettuce from Talon de Gato

Baby Turnips from Talon de Gato

Parsley from Talon de Gato

Patty Pan Squash from Sol y Tierra

Green Beans from Schwebach Farm

Chard from Synergia

Cantaloupe from Preferred Produce

Update from Last week:

We were a little behind schedule last week, Wine n Chili necessitated some special emergency fish deliveries, but we bounced back.

We had a misunderstanding last week, we though the green beans were rained out, but we got them in so we swapped the grape tomatoes out for them. We are getting another installation of green beans this week, and TDG’s last romaine lettuce of the summer this week.

Member, Please email you holds and Substitutions in a separate email to us, so it is not lost in a hidden chain!!

Volunteer with the CSA:

We still are looking for 1-2 regular volunteer for 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 are going to be improving the volunteer exchange program, so it isn’t limited to a full share bases. We will have ways for member to volunteer what time they can, and pick how they are reimbursed for their efforts.

If you, or someone you know is interested in more information, contact Thomas Swendson: or 505-216-8611 ext. 701

Farmers and Share Updates

We are going to try out the bread in shares in a few weeks; it just fell by the wayside of other awesome produce.

Other new product this week:

Rose Veal, from the Mesa Top family herd!

We have veal packs, as well as individual cuts available on the marketplace.

What is New Mexico Rose Veal?   

It’s a more natural and wholesome way to eat veal.

The local foods/sustainability movement of the twenty first century has helped revive traditional small farm retro agriculture of keeping calves with their mother.

Dairy cows need to have babies in order to produce milk. The ratio of males to females born is approximate 50%. That means a dairy farm milking 50 cows can produce around 25 calves a year. Traditionally, male offspring of pastured dairy cows were left with their mothers until forage became scarce in the fall when they would be harvested, their meat being a light rose color and flavorful thanks to their access to green grass.

Raising veal right.

It wasn’t until a few years ago some farmers returned to this old-fashioned method of putting calves out to pasture with their mothers.  Local and organic farmers recognize that veal calves are part of the ecological, ethical and economic balance honor.

A young calve:

  • Stays with cow after birth.
  • Grazes on pasture all their life.
  • Naturally nursed with colostrum.
  • Bought from local family farms at a fair price.
  • Never injected with hormones or antibiotics.
  • Raised outside in small groups with lots of   grass & sunshine
  • Processed locally.


If you consume dairy products, especially artisan cheese and milk from small family dairy’s–even wonderful handcrafted ice cream–you will enjoy eating Rose Veal.


Rose Veal is an extremely tender, lean, and low in fat.  It provides a terrific alternative to beef or lamb for those looking to reduce their fat intake and reap the benefits of a healthy iron intake.

Needs some recipe ideas?

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: ?? What’s next?

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


 Any members interested in purchasing farm share with their EBT, please email us as

Farm and Marketplace News: 

Fall Sourcing: We are starting to see more Southern farms producing, but we will have some Northern farms in the mix to ensure a full balance.

More about the food…

News and specials on the marketplace:

We are starting to get into our Fall 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.

Leeks: on the marketplace

Green Beans: In your share and on the marketplace

Cantaloupe: In your share and on the marketplace

Arugula: on the marketplace

Romaine Lettuce: on the marketplace

Eggplant: on the marketplace

Chard: In your share and on the marketplace

Pepper: Assorted other peppers on the marketplace

Nappa Cabbage: on the marketplace

Apples: More to come, another farmer’s trees are about ready to harvest

Roasted, Cleaned Org Green Chili: on the marketplace

Sweet Corn: the marketplace

Cucumbers: Armenian, Pickling and regular cukes on the marketplace

Carrots: On the marketplace

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

Tomatoes:  Grapes and clusters are on the marketplace

Roasted Baby Turnips with Dijon-Shallot Vinaigrette and Tarragon

Roasted Baby Turnips

  • 2bunches baby turnips, peeled and chopped into quarters
  • 2tablespoons olive oil
  • Pinch of salt, to taste

Dijon-Shallot Vinaigrette

  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 shallot, finely minced
  • Pinch of salt, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon tarragon
  1. Preheat oven to 400° F. Toss baby turnips in olive oil and salt. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet.
  2. Roast for 10 to 15 minutes, or until soft on the inside, with a slightly caramelized exterior.
  3. While the turnips are roasting, whisk together the white wine vinegar and Dijon mustard.
  4. Slowly whisk in the olive oil, taking care not to add too much at a time. Whisk until emulsified, then whisk in the shallots.

Grilled or Roasted Patty pan “Steaks” With Italian Salsa Verde


  • 1 to 2 garlic cloves (to taste), halved, green shoots removed
  •  Salt to taste
  • 1 anchovy fillet, rinsed (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon capers, rinsed and chopped
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ¾ cup (tightly packed) parsley leaves (25 grams)
  •  Freshly ground pepper
  • 2 pounds large patty pan squash
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  •  Salt and freshly ground pepper


  1. Combine the garlic, salt, anchovy fillet and capers in a mortar and pestle and grind to a paste. If you wish to make the sauce in a mini food processor or with an immersion blender (an immersion blender works very well, especially if it has a strong motor), transfer to the processor or place in a jar. Add the parsley. If using a mortar and pestle, grind together until you have a paste. If using a food processor or an immersion blender, add the olive oil with the parsley and blend to a purée. If using a mortar and pestle, slowly drizzle in the olive oil and work into the mixture. Continue to grind until you have a very smooth mixture. Season to taste with salt and pepper. If serving within a few hours, allow to sit at room temperature. Otherwise, refrigerate. Allow to come to room temperature before serving.
  2. Heat a cast-iron skillet over high heat, and preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Line a sheet pan with parchment. Alternately, prepare a hot outdoor grill.
  3. Slice the squash 3/4 inch thick and toss in a bowl with the olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Sear in the hot pan for 1 to 2 minutes on each side, until the surface is lightly browned, and transfer to a sheet pan. Place in the oven and roast for 5 minutes. Using tongs, turn the pieces over and roast for another 5 minutes, until they are sizzling and tender all the way through. Remove from the heat. If grilling, grill the pieces for about 5 minutes on each side, until they are tender all the way through and beginning to drip. Transfer the squash slices to a platter. Top each one with a teaspoonful of the salsa, and serve hot or warm.
  4. Transfer the squash slices to a platter. Top each one with a teaspoonful of the salsa, and serve hot or warm

Warm Chicken with Green Beans and Chard


  • For the dressing
  •  A small shallot
  •  Pinch of salt
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  •  Small bunch of mint, stems discarded, leaves finely chopped

For the chicken and salad

  • 2 plump boneless chicken breasts
  •  A little oil
  •  Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  •  Sprig rosemary, finely chopped
  • 7 ounces green beans, preferably the slender French ones
  • 12 stalks rainbow Swiss chard
  • 6 smallish tomatoes, halved or quartered, depending on their size
  • A few nasturtium blossoms or leaves, if you wish


  • Make the dressing
  • 1. Peel and chop the shallot very finely. Place it in a screw-top jar with a good pinch of salt, the lemon juice, olive oil, and mint. Screw on the lid and shake the jar to mix the dressing.
  • Make the chicken and salad
  • 2. Preheat a grill or grill pan or cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Bring a pot of water to a boil.
  • 3. Brush the chicken with the oil, season with the salt and black pepper, and scatter with the rosemary. Grill or sear the chicken until cooked through. Place on a plate and set aside for 10 minutes, perhaps with an overturned bowl or piece of foil on top to keep the chicken warm, saving any cooking juices that come from it.
  • 4. Meanwhile, trim the ends from the beans. Slice the chard stalks into about 1-inch lengths and remove and reserve the leaves. Boil the beans and the chard stalks in boiling water until tender—a matter of 2 or 3 minutes in each case, depending on the size. Dip the chard leaves into boiling water for 30 seconds. Remove and drain. (I prefer to do this in two pans, as the red from the chard water may darken the beans, but it is up to you. Or you could cook the beans first and then the chard.)
  • 5. Pour the dressing into a bowl, and then add the drained green beans, chard leaves and stalks, the tomatoes, and the nasturtium flowers if you’re using them. Divide the salad between two plates or lovely serving bowls. Cut the chicken breasts into thick slices—about four each—and place on top of the salad.

From the Mesa Top: October 1st, 2015

Can it possibly be October?  Perhaps it is the smoky smell beginning to settle each night from the prescribed burn in the Santa Fe watershed.  Is anyone thinking about firewood?  Remember that Mesa Top has a forest management plan for its several hundred acres of pinon-juniper that includes thinning the forest.  We remove the firewood after it has cured, and split and sell, ½ chord minimum.  Please email if you are interested

Climatology 2015: The eclipse of the full moon on Sunday was spectacular.  It is eerie to see the moon disappear and the starts come out, and the darkness spread.  Then, as surely as the blackout began, the moon reemerges and the moonlight and moon shadows.

Meanwhile very balmy but dry temperatures.  Nothing very close to freezing yet.  The butternut squash are sunning themselves in the fields.

From the Wild: The county road up and on top of the mesa is chock full of cars on the weekends.  Family with sheets and pillow cases and sticks for knocking the pinon out of the trees.  There is lots of pinon all around under the trees.  Steve also found a pack rat nest, in a lumber pile, with a bunch of pinon gathered for the winter.  He cleared up the nest and collected the pinon.

Another roadrunner sighting:  this one just outside the farm gate.  These speedsters are hard to catch, even with a camera.

Cow stories: You can’t make this stuff up”:  This time it’s a bull story…  Bruiser Sampson, son of Cassie about 5 years old now) is a 1500 lb “specimen”.  He is also a fence jumper.  Steve got a text message from a hawkeyed neighbor rancher who was driving to church informing us that one of our bulls was loose on the county road.  Yup, that would be the same county road that all of the pinon gatherers are populating.  So Steve raced up to look for Bruiser and no sign of him.  But there WAS a spot along the fence where the top wire and fence stay were bent over, toward the pasture from the roadside, and a single dark brown hair was stuck on one of the barbs.

Then the next morning Steve saw Bruiser back with the herd.

The thing about bulls is basically when they get to a certain size, they go where they want, end of story.  Bruiser has a somewhat unique skill:  he loves to jump.  We think that is actually very kind of him because he is one heck of a leaper!  For us that means no fence damage!  Can’t beat that.

His older half-brother Huey, son of Cassie, who went to the world of ground beef last spring, was a Houdini of another sort.  We never did figure out how he got out, but no fence contained him by the time he was a 1500 pounder.  And we never found damage either.  The best we could tell he found places where the fence went across small arroyos’ put his head UNDER the fence, and lifted it and walked under and the fence returned to normal shape after he passed underneath

They are last bulls from Cassie, the notorious Houdini and accused lock picker and gate opener.  (She has since has 3 heifers in a row) These skills seem to run in the “family”

Beneficial birds the turkeys are growing like crazy on their diet of plenty grasshoppers.

Cheese making update:  . Milk volume from Pinky and Cindy Lou is picking up.  We will keep you posted on the beginning of cheesemaking.

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


Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s