Member message for Beneficial Farm, CSA for distribution of April 28th, 2016


Check out the Webstore:

Here is what we are planning for your Beneficial CSA Share for Thursday April 28th, 2016

Spinach from Preferred Produce

Carrots from So y Tierra

Daikon Sprouts from Sungreen Living Foods

Ovation Mix from Owl Peak Farm

(Mix of kale, mustard greens, pac choi and other greens)

Zucchini from Preferred Produce

Cheese (most likely) from Old Windmill Dairy – TBD


Crazy week, last week:

We had an interesting week last week, with Preferred’s truck breaking down, and delaying our CSA by a full day, but we made do. This disrupted a few member’s schedules unfortunately, which we do apologize for. We also had a change in the share, our hopes of local asparagus fell through when the farmer decided not to commit to the harvest, but we are still hoping that another grower’s crop will be up to larger production soon.

With all the chaos, I found my hope in future generations restored when Ezra and Sonia’s kids told me they would like to help out with the CSA! We got all the produce down to kiddo height, and they just jumped in! Even Kingston, 7, joined in though he could barely carry the bag when it was full! And, I am pretty sure they were about 100% accurate!

Even if I couldn’t make the other Earth Day celebrations, I was tickled to see the next generation getting involved in food, and having fun with it!



Volunteer needed

We are looking for another reliable volunteer that can lend a hand Thursdays, if you know of anyone. We need someone about9am – Noon, to help bag shares. We trade a share for our volunteer’s time, along with all the fun times to be had. Call or email if you or anyone you know is interested.



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 instilment. 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, 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



*We are getting better at making changes to member’s share when their 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.

News and specials on the marketplace:

We are starting to get into our Spring 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.


Sunflower Sprouts on the marketplace

Cilantro: On the marketplace

Radishes: On the marketplace

Salad Mix: In your share and on the marketplace

Carrots –Schwebach’s: On the marketplace

Wildflower Honey: on the marketplace

Red Chili: on the marketplace

Romaine Lettuce: on the marketplace

Cucumbers: on the marketplace

Zucchini:  In your share and on the marketplace

Red Bell Peppers: on the marketplace

Tomatoes, Grape and Vine Ripe:  On the marketplace

QUINOA:  In your share and on the marketplace

Raw apple Pom juice:  New Mexico pomegranates harvested in early October and stored in the cooler.  Johnny Alarid’s stayman winesaps.  About 1/3 pom and 2/3 apples.


Ovation Mixed Greens


There is a tradition in Crete of gathering wild greens and using them not only in vegetable or salad dishes but also as stuffing for savory turnovers. Cretans make use of tiny leeks, wild fennel, purslane, and milkwort, as well as the more familiar greens. We have substituted a mixture of the varieties of tender greens available at most supermarkets. You can even use prepackaged mixes, such as baby Asian salad or baby braising mix.



  • 1 1/2 pound mixed tender or baby greens such as young chard, kale, mustard greens, spinach, beet greens, dandelion, and arugula, coarse stems discarded and leaves coarsely chopped (20 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil



  • Cook greens in a 6- to 8-quart pot of, uncovered, until wilted and tender, about 3 minutes. Drain greens in a colander, then immediately plunge into a large bowl of very cold water to stop cooking. Once cooled, drain in colander, tossing occasionally, 1 hour.
  • Just before serving, whisk together vinegar, salt, and oil in a bowl until combined well. Add greens and toss to coat.


Strawberry and Spinach Salad with Feta Cheese



4 cups spinach, chopped
2 cups strawberries, sliced
1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled
Slivered almonds

Red Wine Vinaigrette

1/2 cup red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons honey
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
Freshly ground black pepper

For the salad: Toss together all ingredients in a large serving bowl. Set aside while you make the dressing.
Preparing the dressing: Combine red wine vinegar, lemon juice, honey, salt and pepper in a blender or food processor. Pulse to combine and then with machine running, add the olive oil until all ingredients come. Drizzle dressing over salad and toss to coat.


Spinach Quiche
with Feta Cheese


This particular recipe for spinach quiche makes enough filling for a large, 11-inch quiche pan.

Pastry for 1 large, (10-inch or 11-inch) 1-crust pie:
1/4 cup Swiss cheese, shredded
20oz spinach
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup yellow onions, chopped
10 green onions, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/3 cup fresh dill, chopped
1 teaspoon pepper
3 eggs
1-1/2 cups heavy cream or half-and-half
1/4-pound feta cheese
1/4 cup chopped Kalamata olives for garnish

Pre-bake the crust:
Roll the pastry into a 13-inch circle, if you haven’t already.

Line an 11-inch quiche pan (tart pan) with the pastry and turn the edges under to fit the pan. Prick the dough in several places with a fork. Now line the dough with aluminum foil, shiny side down, and freeze for 30 minutes. This prevents the dough from sliding down the sides while pre-baking it.

Preheat your oven to 425° while the shell is freezing. Bake the pastry shell for about 8 minutes. Remove the foil and continue baking about 4 minutes more, until the crust looks dull. Remove and sprinkle the crust with the shredded Swiss cheese. Turn the oven temperature down to 375°.

Prepare the filling while the pie crust is freezing and pre-baking:
Squeeze the spinach dry. Over medium heat, sauté the green and yellow onions and garlic in the butter and olive oil. Add the spinach, dill and pepper and continue sautéing until the spinach is thoroughly wilted. Remove from the heat and cool for several minutes.

In a bowl, beat the eggs and whisk in the heavy cream or half-and-half.

Crumble the feta cheese into the cooled spinach mixture. Stir in the cream mixture.

Bake the quiche:
Pour the quiche filling into the pre-baked pie crust. Bake it for 35-40 minutes or until done; when done, the filling will be puffed and lightly browned, and a knife inserted into the center will come out clean. Let it stand for 5 or 10 minutes.


Three-Carrot Soup


Hands-On Time:  10 minutes

Total Time:  20 minutes
Serves 6

4 -5 large carrots, diced
3 stalks celery, diced
½ onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 – 4 sprigs fresh thyme
3 cups / 709 ml vegetable broth
1 tablespoon olive oil
Sea salt and cracked pepper to taste
2 cups / 316g cooked rice (I prefer brown jasmine rice)
1 cup / 236 ml carrot juice
1 cup carrot top greens, no stems, roughly chopped

To serve
Zest of one lemon
½ cup flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
6 tablespoons shredded parmesan


In a medium saucepan over medium heat, add olive oil & onions and sauté for 3 minutes.

Add garlic, celery & carrots and sauté another 3 minutes.

Add thyme, vegetable broth and salt & pepper to taste.  Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer for 5 – 7 minutes.

Remove from heat and add rice, carrot juice, carrot tops and taste to adjust salt & pepper, if needed.  Remove thyme sprigs.

Ladle into bowls and top with some lemon zest, parsley & parmesan.

Garnish with chopped Kalamata olives, slice and serve. Makes 6-8 servings.


Zucchini Rolls with Sunflower Seeds Pate, Sun Dried Tomatoes and Spinach



For sunflower seeds pate:

  • 1 cup sunflower Sprouts
  • 4 Tbs. olive oil
  • 2 Tbs. tahini
  • 4½ T freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • Pinch nutmeg
  • Sea salt, to taste
  • Black pepper, to taste
  • Chili flakes, to taste

For the rolls:

  • 1 big zucchini, cut into flat thin strips (you should get around 12)
  • 12 spinach leaves, medium sized
  • 12 basil leaves
  • 6 sun dried tomatoes, cut into fine strips
  • 1/2 cup sprouted buckwheat groats*


  • Sprinkle salt on the zucchini strips and let them sit for 5 to10 mins.
  • To make the sunflower seeds pate add all the ingredients for the pate to a high speed blender and blitz until you get a creamy mix.
  • Scoop pate in a bowl and season to taste.
 Rinse the zucchini to get rid of the excessive salt and pat them dry to eliminate moisture.
  • Prepare all the ingredients for the rolls and begin to assemble.

To make one roll add:

  • 1 slice zucchini
  • 1 Tbs. pate spread on the surface of the zucchini slice
  • 1 tsp. sprouted buckwheat (gently press this into the pate so it does not scatter all over). Place in the middle 2-3 sun dried tomato strips
  • 1 spinach leaf
  • 1 basil leaf
  • Roll; pin them with toothpicks

They are best served fresh but keep well in the fridge for 1 day or so.


From the Mesa Top: April 28th, 2016

Climatology 2016:  Conditions after the passage of the cool and showery spell are no surprise:  wind and lots of it.  The storm track is active now north of us, so the lower, tail end of the storms bring more wind than anything else.  Looking ahead, the storm track may move south again close to New Mexico bringing the return of unsettled weather over the weekend.

We heard from farmers up north, along the NM and Colorado border, that the snowpack in the mountains there is way up above normal.  The peaks of Northern NM also got a lot of snow, and things are looking much better there as well.

The last round of precipitation has left us with pasture grasses greening up and wildflowers beginning to appear.  This is especially noticeable in the areas that were completely grazed off and also are a bit moister, protected from wind, and north facing.

From the Wild:  We continue to hope for some good old fashioned “public/private partnership” resources from the USDA:   There is so much opportunity right now to make use of the water still on the ground in the big pond, and seeping into the canyon below the pond.

US Fish and Wildlife Service site visit is still scheduled for Wednesday morning.  This one has been a long time in the works.

USDA NRCS (Natural Resource Conservation Service) site visit is postponed.  There are problems with our application to NRCS for the EQIP (Environmental Quality Improvement Program).  There is incomplete and/or inaccurate paperwork at one agency that is important to the work of another agency.  This sort of thing is not uncommon and is usually tolerated.  From time to time someone in an authoritative position decides that this can’t be tolerated, and in the end the results flow out to the Cooperator.  The required paperwork can be corrected and we can apply again.  But then, will new issues be found?  Seems like the bureaucracy is never satisfied.

Cow stories:  Two more calf’s in rapid succession after Maymo.  One was easy, one was scary.  The oldest heifer from Cassie had her calf, easily, and without fanfare or worry.  Another of the young heifers at Scott and Julies had her calf.  The poor exhausted momma lost track of the calf and never really bonded to her.  The calf was found a couple of fields away from her momma.  Attempts to reunite them failed at first.  After they were moved back to Mesa Top, momma was put in the milking stanchion and the calf determinedly nursed.  For two days she could only nurse that way, and got her nourishment just once a day.  She was loud with complaints by the afternoon each day, and satisfied after nursing.  Finally, on the third day she broke through momma’s resistance and began nursing when momma was busy eating.  She also started nursing on Maymo. No more complaining.  3 happy calves!

Beneficial birds   Nothing exciting or new from the chicken world

Our farms and farmers thank you for your support,

The Warshawer/Swendson/Agard Family


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