Member message for Beneficial Farm, CSA for distribution of August 4th, 2016

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Here is what we are planning for your Beneficial CSA Share for Thursday August 4th, 2016

Armenian Cucumbers from Sol y Tierra

Green Chili, Mild from Sol y Tierra

Beets from Synergia Ranch

Carrots from Frisco Farm

Bell Peppers from Owl Peak Farm

Salad Mix from Mesa Top Farm

Basil from Chispas Farm

Young Potatoes from Jubilee Farm



We were talking with the gals at Chispas Farm, in the South Valley of ABQ last week, and they said they were looking for some families that wanted local flower bouquets to go with their farm fresh produce. This seemed like a cool idea to try out, and bring even more color to the bountiful locally grown selection we have this week. The bouquets will be a mix of of Zinnias, Calendula, Celosia, Salvia and Black Eyed Susan’s. Seeing as I am not a flower expert, I had to pull some images together to see what the bouquet will include, but here is Marjory with some of the Black Eyed Susan’s in the field!




We are working on what tentatively might be a really cool new connection to an orchard in Paonia, CO. If things go well, we will get a smaller initial order of apricots this week to check out, which are listed on the marketplace. If all goes well, we will have a large share for members next week, and some amazing deals.


Green Chili

Many of our members might be unfamiliar with how to prepare green chili, but don’t feel overwhelmed, its very simple. We have included a variety of methods to roast chili in your kitchen or BBQ, to make it as easy as possible. See the recipe section!

Basil Deals

We are offering a discount on Basil in Bulk, for anyone that wants to stock up for pesto making or other dishes. $12.99/lb!

Member Recruitment, Member Appreciation, Summer Deal…

Ah, the big questions of any business! How do we find new members, show our current members the appreciation they deserve for their support, and also promote the awesome deals our summer’s harvests provide us? Truth be told, it’s not my favorite side of the business, it takes a certain personality to excel in marketing. In the coming weeks, we will finally get a few efforts off the ground with some help! Our website has been redesigned, gone will be our ’90 style site, and we will be replacing it with a more up to date website. We are also going to start bi-weekly promotions for members, accompanied by deals from other local businesses. We will have incentive for referring a friend, discounts on marketplace orders and even Salmon discounts! With our new approach, you will also see other similar local business’s special deal as well in our emails.

What ideas do you have?

We value your feedback on what made you become a member, what would reward you for continuing to support our CSA and other ways we can show our appreciation for your support! The CSA and Farm are a family effort, and our members are an extended family, we want to make sure we show the same support that we receive!


Member Reminder:

We love recycling!

We rely on members returning a reusable bag to their pick up site every week when they pick up their shares! We also reuse egg cartons as long as they are clean.

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 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.


Baja Garlic braids: Last week on the marketplace, $2 off, $6.99 ea

Wild Flower Honey is back on the marketplace!

Chard: on the marketplace

Leeks: on the marketplace

Basil, 4oz and 1lb deals: In your share and on the marketplace

Young Potatoes: In your share and on the marketplace

Collards: on the marketplace

Gold Nugget Cherry Tomatoes: on the marketplace

Apricots: on the marketplace

Fava Beans: on the marketplace

Kale, Dino: on the marketplace

Cucumber, marketmore and pickling: on the marketplace

Summer Squash: Patty Pan, Mexican Grey & Zucchini: on the marketplace

Sprouts: Sunflower and Buckwheat on the marketplace


How to Roast and Freeze Green Chiles


What You Need

Green chiles

Towel for drying
Oven broiler
Baking sheet(s)
Aluminum foil
Paper bag, food-safe plastic bag, or heat-safe covered bowl
Freezer bag(s) or shallow, freezer-safe container(s)
Cutting board (optional)
Knife (optional)
Spoon (optional)
Gloves to protect your hands (optional)

roasted chili


  1. Select chiles: Choose fresh chiles that are heavy, smooth, and crisp. Straight and flat chiles, as opposed to curled ones, roast more evenly. Plan to roast the chiles within a few days of picking or purchasing them.
  2. Preheat the broiler: Position a rack 4 to 6 inches below the heating element of your broiler and preheat to high or 400° to 450°F.
  3. Wash and dry the chiles: Rinse the chiles and dry them with a towel.
  4. Place the chiles on a baking sheet: Arrange the chiles in a single layer on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet(s).
  5. Roast the chiles on one side: Place the chiles under the broiler and roast until the skin is charred and blistered, about 3 to 5 minutes. Avoid completely blackening the chiles; you’re looking for them to be about 60% to 70% charred.
  6. Turn them over and roast the other side: Using tongs, flip the chiles over and broil on the other side until the skin is charred and blistered, about 3 to 5 minutes. Again, avoid completely blackening the chiles; you’re looking for them to be about 60% to 70% charred.
  7. Steam the peppers to loosen the peel: Remove the chiles from the broiler and place them in a paper bag, food-safe plastic bag, or heat-safe bowl. Close the bag or cover the bowl, and let stand for 10 to 15 minutes. The steam will help loosen the peel from the chiles.
  8. Peel, seed, chop (optional): The chiles may be peeled and seeded prior to freezing or later, as needed. You may wish to wear gloves to protect your hands, especially if you are processing a large quantity of chiles. To peel, pull the skin off the chile; it should come off fairly easily, but you can use a knife to cut away any stubborn bits. Seeds and membranes are most easily scraped out with a spoon. If you want, you can also chop the chiles into smaller pieces.
  9. Cool the chiles: Chiles should be completely cool before freezing them. For food safety, whole chiles can be cooled at room temperature for up to 2 hours after roasting them, or refrigerated for up to 3 days. Seeded or chopped chiles are generally cool enough by the time you finish processing them.
  10. Place the chiles in freezer containers: Use plastic freezer bags or shallow containers, which help prevent freezer burn. Arrange whole chiles in a single, flat layer to ensure even freezing and to prevent them from sticking together. If using bags, press as much air out as possible. Alternatively, you can freeze the chiles in a single layer on a tray, then transfer them to a container once frozen solid. Chopped chiles may be frozen in ice cube trays and then transferred to a container.
  11. Freeze for up to a year. Store the chiles in the freezer for up to a year and thaw in the refrigerator before using.

Recipe Notes – Alternative Roasting Methods:

  • Outdoor grill: Roast chiles directly on the grill, watching them closely and turning over as needed.
  • Electric or gas burner: Cover the burner with wire mesh and roast chiles on top, turning over as needed.
  • Cast iron skillet: Roast chiles in a skillet over medium-high heat, turning over as needed.
  • Open flame: Holding a chile pepper with tongs, carefully char it over an open gas flame or using a culinary torch.


Armenian Cucumber Salad

armenian salad

serves 4 as a side dish

1/2 cup cider vinegar

1/4 cup water

1T sugar

1 small clove of garlic, crushed

healthy pinch of salt

1 Armenian cucumber, thinly sliced, about 2 cups

1/4 cup thinly sliced red pepper

2T finely diced red onion

2T finely diced yellow pepper

1 tsp dried dill weed

1/2 tsp black mustard seeds (optional)

Combine cider vinegar, water, sugar and garlic in a small sauce pan and bring to a boil. Stir and remove from the heat when the sugar is fully dissolved. Add a pinch of salt and let cool.

Meanwhile, toss all the remaining ingredients together in a medium sized bowl. When the dressing is cool, pour over the vegetables; you may not want to use all the dressing if you prefer a drier salad. Toss and serve right away. Also, since the salad improves with sitting, it’s fine to do this up to several hours ahead of time.

Alternatively, carefully lay out the cucumber slices on four white plates. Sprinkle on the red and yellow peppers and the red onion. Follow with the dried dill and black mustard seed. When dressing is cool, drizzle over the vegetables and serve.

Baby Potatoes and Mushrooms in Creamy Sauce


2 lb. baby potatoes (red, yellow, fingerling)

16 oz. (1 lb.) whole small button mushrooms or sliced large size mushrooms

8 -10 garlic cloves minced or crushed

1 shallot minced (optional)

1 cup heavy whipping cream*

3/4 cup sour cream *

2 tbs.butter

2 tbs.oil salt to taste *

You can sub in crème fraiche


Place potatoes in a pot covered with water.

Bring to a boil, reduce heat and season with salt.

Cook until potatoes are fork tender ready.

Drain the water, place the pot with potatoes on medium heat and let all the liquid evaporate. Just few minutes.

In a large sauté pan/frying pan/skillet heat oil with butter on medium -high heat.

Throw in mushrooms and shallots.

Sauté until liquid is absorbed.

Mix in garlic. Cook for 1-2 minutes stirring.

Throw in cooked potatoes and cook for few minutes stirring occasionally.

Combine heavy cream and sour cream.

Stir in mixed creams to potatoes. Season with salt.

Cook in sauce for about 1 minute.

Garnish with finely chopped dill, parsley or chives. –





20 mins


20 mins

Serves: about six servings


  • 1½ lbs mixed beets, (Chioggia, golden, white, red etc., peeled and diced)
  • 2 cups chopped mixed basil , (Violetta, Genovese, Cinnamon etc.)
  • 2 cloves garlic, (minced)
  • 3 tbsp unrefined extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp raw apple cider vinegar


  1. Steam the beets over rapidly boiling water until they become tender, about five minutes or so. If using multiple varieties, note that the red beets will stain the other varieties so you may wish to steam them separately.
  2. Once tender, immediately plunge the steamed beets into a bowl of ice water, allowing them to chill until completely cool.
  3. Drain the beets, patting them or spinning them dry as necessary.
  4. Combine the drained beets with chopped basil, minced garlic.
  5. Dress with vinegar and olive oil.
  6. Serve cold.





10 mins


10 mins


20 mins


Serves: 2-3


  • 1 boneless chicken breast, cut into thin strips
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons rice wine
  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil or other flavorless oil, divided
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 4 chopped Thai chilies
  • 1½ tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1½ teaspoon sweet soy sauce
  • ½ teaspoon organic sugar
  • 20 Thai basil leaves or mint leaves
  • ⅓ cup chicken stock
  • Steamed brown rice, for serving


  1. Mix chicken strips with cornstarch and rice wine.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a wok or large skillet. Add red bell pepper and stir-fry until it just loses its rawness, about 1 minute. Remove to a bowl.
  3. Heat remaining tablespoon of oil in wok. Add garlic and chilies and stir-fry until fragrant, about one minute.
  4. Add chicken and stir-fry until no longer pink.
  5. Add fish sauce, sweet soy sauce, and sugar. Toss well with chicken.
  6. Add basil leaves, stir-fried red bell pepper, and stock. Bring to a boil and give it a quick stir.
  7. Serve over steamed brown rice.



From the Mesa Top: August 4th, 2016

Climatology 2016:  Now there is a real monsoon moisture settling in over the state.  The weather is becoming cooler by day and warmer at night.  The air is getting more damp and almost muggy, at least by Southwest standards

Over the next few days most of the state, except far Southeast and northwest corners are expected to receive rain.  Places that have had some rain already will tend toward flash flooding.

From the Wild:  the scavengers:  turkey buzzards, ravens and crows, and coyotes continue to live well.  Lots to feast on.  There are also a wider variety of bird species around the farm: Woodpeckers, swallows, hummingbirds, mountain bluebirds, clark’s Jays, and mourning doves to name a few.

Cow stories:  Nothing much new from the bovine world.  The range herd is working hard to find grass, and walking a long way to get to water.  These are working cows, not a lazy one among them.

Except Pinky and her calf, who are living the easy life lounging around the coral, eating lots of hay, and getting “treats” to come to the milking stanchion every day for health check and milking.

Beneficial birds   the chicks are growing quickly as evidenced by their ravenous appetites.

The Warshawer/Swendson/Agard Family



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