Member message for Beneficial Farm, CSA for distribution of December 10th, 2015

Check out the Webstore:

Here is what we are planning for your Beneficial CSA Share for Thursday December 10th, 2015

Chimayo Golden Delicious Apples from Eli Martinez

Carrots from Schwebach Farm

Yellow Onions from Schwebach Farm

Yellow/Red Potatoes from White Mountain Farm

Rio Star Grapefruit from South Texas Organics

Hamlin (Juicing) Oranges from South Texas Organics


We had some trouble with the emails last week, it sounds like some members didn’t get them. We apologize for the communication issues.

We have a couple important pieces of info for member, which will require some feedback.

Holiday Closures: We will be closed down for Christmas Eve, 12/24. We are considering being closed for New Year’s Eve as well, we were closed last year and it’s not often we can justify a break. Please send your input back to us, regarding your feelings about 12/31 distribution.


Hillside Members: December will be our last month at Hillside, both for distribution and member pick up. We believe we will be moving over by the Food Depot, but we are still working on the new distribution location. We would like to hear from Hillside members about their needs, both in location and time of pick up. If we found a drop off location in that area, it would likely be delivered later in the day when we are going towards Eldorado. Please also let us know if another pick up location would work well for you, or in some cases we are delivering at an office.

Eggs: Please read the Mesa Top egg section, but for the time being, our chickens are not producing eggs. We will keep everyone updated on production. In the meantime, we will be removing your egg shares, storing a list of who had recurring orders on their accounts.

What else is new?

If anyone hasn’t noticed, we are in the winter season of produce. We have some good stores of winter squash, potatoes and other storable items, and we are relying on our greenhouse growers down south more. We are expecting our first installment of fresh pressed juice, apple cider and pomegranate, in the next week or two. We have about 2 more green chili shares to distribute through the winter, and we haven’t even gotten into needing any grains yet. Preparing for the move of our distribution site is a bit overwhelming, but we think things will go pretty smoothly.

Steve and the Coop have been running some awesome workshop pilots for local farmers, to start preparing them for the changes required under the new FSMA regulations. The Food Safety Modernization Act has been up for debate on how it will either help or hurt small scale growers, but through the work of people like Steve and the Wallace center, the small producers across the nation had a strong voice for their view. I have only gone through day one of the training, but although the information is very dense, it’s really just good growing practices, really focusing on making sure the farmers are trained on thinking about food safety. One of the coolest components I thought that was in the training was that instead of policies that encouraged or required destruction of surrounding ecosystems, they really concentrate on how important a balanced environment can be in ensuring safe farming. Deforestation can remove natural screens from dust born contamination, over targeting a certain pest can leave room for a vermin species to flourish that carry more pathogens then others, destruction of wet lands remove natural water filters, it just goes on and on.

Farm map

CSA Delivery Schedule:

Hillside – Ready around 10 am – 4/5pm

SFP – 1-2pm Delivery

SWK – 2:30/3pm

Commons – 3pm

Eldorado – 4pm

ABQ – 5-7pm

Sweetwater Members:

We have heard from SWK that members have been exceeding our agreed upon 6pm pick up time, coming in as late as 9pm. On behalf of SWK, as our partner, we would ask that members not pick up shares past 6pm at SWK.

Member  Reminder:

Members who are new to the CSA, or have not replenished their Farmigo account before, please read this!

Member accounts are not set up to stop service once your account hits $0. Most member accounts are set up on an automatic billing system, or those that don’t have this set up, pay in some regular installment. Member accounts will receive an email notice if their account is falling below $50, regardless of if their payment is automatic or not.

Members wishing to stop their share when their balance hits zero, NEED to email us to suspend their shares! We don’t make a habit of regulating balances week to week, and don’t mind letting a family bounce a week’s worth of food to keep them feed, so we don’t stop shares when your balance hits zeros unless we know your leaving the CSA. In order to have our flexible system, where a family can wait a week to reinvest in a share, we need members to let us know when they are closing our accounts, or taking a vacation. Otherwise, we spend even more money in paying for unclaimed shares,which aren’t able to be donated by the time a member lets us know they are canceling some times.



Member recruitment/sponsorship:

Any Thought or member input?


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


CSA Phone: 505-470-1969

This number goes to a routing company, where we have created a few extensions to help direct and filter your calls. These calls go directly to one of our family’s cell phones, but if we cannot take your call at that time, we need you to leave a message in regards to why you are calling. These messages also get emailed to all of us, so we have multiple people aware of an issue, increase response.


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.



*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.



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


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.

Local Quinoa is back! White Mountain Farm lost their crop of Quinoa last year, but they had better weather this year.


South Texas Citrus: Hamlin Oranges and Rio Star Grapefruit

Hamlin Oranges by the Case: $50 ea

Cantaloupe: on the marketplace

Roasted, Cleaned Org Green Chili: on the marketplace

Cucumbers: on the marketplace

Onions: on the marketplace

Carrots: On the marketplace

Zucchini: In your share and on the marketplace

Red Bell Peppers: In your share and on the marketplace

Winter Squash: Acorn, Pie Pumpkin and Butternut Squash on the marketplace, Hubbard Squash in your share

Tomatoes:  Grapes and clusters are on the marketplace


Juice it!

Not everyone is likes eating citrus whole, or they regularly juice blends of fruits and vegetables, but who can argue with a tall glass of freshly pressed OJ?

It’s not a complicated process, either using a hand or mechanical juicer; you can extract the juice and pulp to your taste, leaving you with some taste juice.


Orange juice (duh)

Oranges and grapefruit juice, 2 oranges and one grapefruit

Lemon orange juice, 3 oranges and one lemon

grapefruit juice

Apple-Orange Salad

apple orange salad


4 navel oranges
4 blood oranges
3 tablespoons honey
1 1 -inch piece ginger, thinly sliced
1 green apple, thinly sliced
1 red apple, thinly sliced

Cut the ends off the navel and blood oranges, then cut away the peel and white pith. Working over a bowl, cut along both sides of each membrane with a paring knife to remove the segments, allowing them to drop into the bowl. Discard any seeds. Squeeze the juice from the membranes into a small bowl (you should have about 1 cup of juice).

Bring the reserved orange juice, honey and ginger to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook until syrupy, 8 to 10 minutes. Let cool completely; discard the ginger. Toss the syrup with the oranges and apples.

Apple Orange Bread Recipe

app orange bread


  • 2 large tart apples, quartered
  • 1 large unpeeled orange, quartered
  • 1-1/2 cups raisins
  • 2/3 cup shortening
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts


  1. In a blender or food processor, process apples, orange and raisins until finely chopped; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream shortening and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition; beat until light and fluffy. Beat in extract. Combine dry ingredients; add to creamed mixture alternately with orange juice. Stir in fruit mixture and nuts.
  3. Pour into three greased 8-in. x 4-in. loaf pans. Bake at 350° for 50-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.Yield: 3 loaves.

Carrot-Potato Gnocchi

carrot gnocchi


  • 2 pounds baking potatoes (about 4)
  • 4 large carrots, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 cup water
  • Salt
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Freshly grated Parmigiano cheese


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°. Pierce the potatoes all over with a fork. Bake in a microwave oven at high power for 10 minutes, and then flip the potatoes and microwave for 5 minutes longer. Transfer the potatoes to the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Alternatively, bake the potatoes in the oven for about 1 hour, until tender.
  2. In a skillet, cook the carrots in the olive oil over moderate heat for 2 minutes. Add the water and a pinch of salt. Cover and cook until tender, 15 minutes. Puree in a food processor.
  3. Halve the potatoes. Scoop the flesh into a ricer and rice the potatoes. Transfer 2 slightly packed cups of riced potatoes to a bowl. Stir in the egg yolks, 1/2 cup of the carrot puree and 1 teaspoon of salt. Add the 1/2 cup and 2 tablespoons of flour; stir until a stiff dough forms. Knead the dough gently until smooth but slightly sticky.
  4. Line a baking sheet with wax paper and dust with flour. On a floured surface, cut the dough into 4 pieces, rolling each into a 3/4-inch-thick rope. Cut the ropes into 3/4-inch pieces. Roll each piece against the tines of a fork to make ridges; transfer to the baking sheet.
  5. In a large, deep skillet of simmering salted water, cook the gnocchi until they rise to the surface, then simmer for 2 minutes longer. In a large nonstick skillet, melt the butter. Using a slotted spoon, add the gnocchi to the butter. Season with salt and pepper and cook over high heat for 1 minute. Sprinkle with the cheese and serve.



From the Mesa Top: December 10th, 2015

Climatology 2015: Just when the weekly wet weather pattern seemed well established, the dry air takes over again.  Cool sometimes cold nights, comfortable days unless the wind is blowing.  Even the cold days, when there is no wind, are pretty comfortable.  The shift back to moist weather is most likely to occur in the last 10 days of the year, which are typically cold, so we would see some decent snow then.

From the Wild:  Ice on the reservoir now.  The short days and low sun angle mean no real warm up during the day except on protected, south facing areas.

Cow stories: Our wounded cow has a real bad sore leg.  She is able to get up and lie down quite easily, but she cannot fully extend her sore front leg or put any weight on it.  There is clearly day to day improvement, so in the end we are hopeful for a full recovery.

The calving drama continues, as another cow at Scott and Julie’s calved out twins!  One of the two was separated from momma for over 2 days, because who knew that there were two!  The mommas were all moved closer to home for safety, and the little one was left behind because momma had stashed him.  She was not concerned, as she had one mouth to feed.  It is common for one of the twins to be rejected.  But once he had a chance, junior muscled right in and started nursing.  His little sister was weak and listless, but was able to nurse if she was brought over to momma, who lost interest in her when vigorous big brother showed up again.  After a couple of days of special attention, balance seems to be restored, and both calves are moving with momma.

Twinning in cows happens on average 1 per 200 births.  They twins are almost always a male and female. The females are almost always infertile.  Because they grew up in utero bathed in the testosterone of big brother, the development of their reproductive organs is rarely complete.  Those heifers are called freemartins.  We are hopeful that momma will raise two healthy calves, and likely both will go to meat.

A third calf was born at Scott and Julies, another bull calf.  3 down (counting our injured momma whose calf was lost) and 4 to go!

Out on the pasture, the cows have found an adjacent, unattended area and are enjoying some high quality standing forage.  Plenty of hay on hand now.  No sign of more calves yet.

Beneficial birds The hens are healthy and well feed.  Slowly slowly slowly more eggs.  The relatively warm weather is helping their recovery.  As soon as we can again provide our eggs we will let you know, meanwhile we are substituting organic valley organic, but not charging any more for them.

Cheese making update:  . No new news.

Our farms and farmers thank you for your support,

The Warshawer/Swendson/Agard Family

Beneficial Farm CSA


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