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Here is what we are planning for your Beneficial CSA Share for Thursday March 9th, 2017

Salad Mix from Sol y Tierra Coop

Hubbard Squash from Jubilee Farm

Portabella Mushrooms from Rakhra Alamosa, CO

Hakurei Turnips from Sol Harvest Farm

Cucumber from Preferred Produce

Kale from Preferred Produce

Carrots from Schwebach Farm




Restaurant Week in Albuquerque!!

We got a bit behind in talking with some of our Santa Fe chefs to plan for Restaurant week, but we did get the chance to work with Zinc in Albuquerque for their restaurant week menu!!

For those who are not as familiar with it, New Mexico’s culinary world hosts a 3 week long event to showcase our state’s remarkable dining establishments know as Restaurant Week. Santa Fe, Taos / Northern NM and Albuquerque each have a week long special during this time, where the chefs create an amazing menu that is at a fraction of the cost it would normally be. This is a Win-Win for the restaurants and the patrons, this is a slower season for restaurants and in exchange for the resounding support their patrons show during these weeks, the special menus are offered at substantial discounts.


Zinc Wine Bar and Bistro

Sunday, March 5 – Sunday, March 12


Dinner Menu

$35 per person


First Course (Choice Of One)

Mussels Poulette  —  Leeks, cream, parsley, haystack potatoes, grilled bread

Wedge Salad Of Asian Pear, Roasted Beets & Fourme D’Ambert Cheese  — Banyuls vinaigrette, hazelnut toast

Crispy Duck Confit Eggroll  —  Served with peanut curry and chile-lime dipping sauces

Onion Soup Gratinee  —  Topped with a toasted baguette and melted layers of gruyere and fontina cheeses


Main Course (Choice Of One)

House Made Braised Beef Ravioli Bourguignon  —  Simmered in Burgundy red wine sauce with baby carrots, pearl onions, mushrooms and English peas. Plated with celery root-potato puree and shaved Reggianito cheese

Baked Stuffed Dover Sole  —  Crab & scallop filling, cous cous, green beans & local spaghetti squash, Sauce Grenobloise

Pan Fried Pork Schnitzel  —  Sweet potato & jalapeno hash, braised red cabbage, caramelized shallot brown sauce and bacon-vanilla porter jam

Beneficial Farms Rotisserie Free Range Chicken  —  Black truffle & chicken sausage stuffing, marble potatoes, apple cider braised root vegetables, tomato confit, Vermouth velouté



Dessert Course

Double Chocolate Turtle Cheesecake  —  Classic New York style cheesecake layered with pecan caramel swirl, Oreo cookie crust and white chocolate sour cream



Of course since our family’s chickens are a main course for the dinner, we had to go and ensure that the chefs did our birds justice!


As we began our meal, famished in expectation of such a filling meal, we soon became lost in conversation, libation and delicious appetizers consisting of the duck confit eggrolls and onion soup gratinee. The eggrolls were very savory, paired with the dipping sauces, creating an excellent prelude to the main course. The onion soup could have been a meal in itself, a bowl of molten cheese and onion soup was brought out with the cheese still slightly bubbling from its last crisping. It took 2 of us to attempt to finish the soup, but as amazing as it was, it did require to be saved for home to have any room for the rest of the meal!

As our main course came out, giving some ample time to further delve into conversation and digest, we were again in awe of the presentation, aromas and plethora of the dishes placed before us. The hand made beef ravioli were exceptionally rich in flavor, with a mound of celery-root mashed potatoes hidden underneath. For the deep, rich beef loving patron, this will hit the spot. The rotisserie chicken was a meal fit for a king, easily shareable between 2 people! The layer of black truffle sausage and duck fat under the skin added a layer of flavor to our already very flavorful chicken breast, where I found myself trying savoring both pieces of meat individually. The sear amount of protein on the plate almost masked the vegetables, hidden away under the breast and thigh. Roasted marble potatoes, braised radishes and grape tomatoes all made for wonderful pairing with the chicken, with a well-made sauce to ensure the overall flavor balance. Needless to say, the main courses were only half consumed, something we are very thankful for today as our leftovers.

Our dinner wrapped up with delivery of the slices of cheesecake. Though our stomachs screamed no, our eyes could not object to such beautiful deserts being presented in front of us. At first, we marveled and nibbled at the dried/toasted apple skins resting on top, testing our resolve to see the meal through to the end. Soon though, the call of the cheesecake broke through all resolve, and we took the first bites. The combination of caramel, chocolate, nuts and cheesecake all shown through brightly, without an overpowering of sweetness or singular flavors. Our resolve only lasted so long, and even the desert got wrapped up to take with us.


The entire evening at Zinc last night was one for the history books, a beautiful setting with a course pairing of spectacular foods, leaving us with a magical memory. If only we were wine drinkers, Zinc has an extensive wine list that is sure to pair well with any of your choices. Our other regret is that we only tried half of the menu, if what we experienced is of any comparison, the other dishes will be equally as amazing in their own rights!

Of course, we have our bias, Zinc is a very good partner and supporter of local farmers, as shines true on their menu. We love restaurant week, and even though we are late, we want to encourage our members to go out and support their local restaurants, especially when they buy local! We hope some of our Santa Fe members will make the drive down to dine at Zinc this week, it is one of the best menus we have seen in a while, and we are sure you won’t be disappointed!

Albuquerque Restaurant Week Listing 


New Website!

Well, we are now live with our spiffy, new website! We are very pleased with the way things have turned out, upgrading our public front to match the modern age of technology. We hope that you get a chance to check it out, we are trying to include a lot more information on it! Please feel free to send us any ideas or suggestions, especially for our long time members, we want to make sure that we continue to represent our CSA as best we can!


New Website Link


CSA Recipes Needed:

We are working on a cookbook for our CSA Members, and anyone getting into the world of local foods and minimal waste cooking. We are partnering with a fabulous writer who created an amazing CSA cookbook baseline that we are now working on making our own. Any personal recipes you want to share that we can include in this book, please send a copy! We want to publish an amazing cookbook that not only illustrates the necessity of low waste cooking with “weird” CSA foods, but also has a real tie to the NM members who have made their dinners based on what the land provides.




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 if 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. 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 can 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 Winter 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.


Delicata Squash: On the marketplace

Hubbard Squash: On the marketplace

Carrots: On the marketplace

Garlic: On the marketplace

Sprouts: Sunflower and Buckwheat on the marketplace

Cucumbers: On the Marketplace

Spinach: On the Marketplace

Hakurei Turnips: On the Marketplace

Desiree Potatoes: On the Marketplace

Green Lettuce: On the Marketplace

Kale: On the Marketplace

Salad Mix: On the Marketplace

Grape and Vine Ripe Tomatoes: On the Marketplace

Mushrooms: Button and Portabella: On the Marketplace


Portobello Penne Pasta Casserole 



  • 1 (8 ounce) package uncooked penne pasta
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 pound portobello mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup margarine
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced


  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 9×13 inch baking dish.
  2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Place pasta in the pot, cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until al dente, and drain.
  3. Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the mushrooms, cook 1 minute, and set aside. Melt margarine in the saucepan. Mix in flour, garlic, and basil. Gradually mix in milk until thickened. Stir in 1 cup cheese until melted. Remove saucepan from heat, and mix in cooked pasta, mushrooms, spinach, and soy sauce. Transfer to the prepared baking dish, and top with remaining cheese.
  4. Bake 20 minutes in the preheated oven, until bubbly and lightly brown.


Cabbage, Carrot and Purple Kale Latkes 



  • 5 cups finely shredded cabbage (about 1 1/4 pounds, or half of a small cabbage)
  • 2 cups finely chopped purple kale or curly kale
  • 7 to 8 ounces carrots, peeled and grated (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 serrano chili, seeded and minced
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  •  Salt to taste
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds, lightly toasted and coarsely ground or crushed
  • 3 tablespoons oat bran
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons cornmeal
  • 2 tablespoons buckwheat flour
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  •  About 1/4 cup canola, grape seed or rice bran oil



  1. Heat the oven to 300 degrees. Line a sheet pan with parchment. Place a rack over another sheet pan.
  2. In a large bowl mix together the cabbage, kale, cilantro, chili, baking powder, salt, cumin, oat bran, flour, cornmeal and buckwheat flour. Taste and adjust salt. Add the eggs and stir together. Let the mixture sit for 10 to 15 minutes, then stir again.
  3. Begin heating a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Take a 1/4 cup measuring cup and fill with 3 tablespoons of the mixture. Reverse onto the parchment-lined baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining latke mix. You should have enough to make about 20 latkes.
  4. Add the oil to the pan and when it is hot (hold your hand a few inches above – you should feel the heat), slide a spatula under one portion of the latke mixture and transfer it to the pan. Press down with the spatula to flatten. Repeat with more mounds. In my 10-inch pan I can cook four at a time without crowding; my 12-inch pan will accommodate four or five. Cook on one side until golden brown, about three to four minutes. Slide the spatula underneath and flip the latkes over. Cook on the other side until golden brown, another three minutes. Transfer to the rack set over a baking sheet and place in the oven to keep warm.
  5. Serve hot topped with low-fat sour cream, Greek style yogurt or crème fraîche.


Italian Chicken Sausage Stuffed Portabellas 



  • 8 portabella mushroom caps (3 to 4-inch diameter), cleaned with stems removed
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 (16 ounce) package al fresco(R) All Natural Sweet Italian Chicken Sausage
  • 1 (8 ounce) container cream cheese spread with onion and chives, softened


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • Fresh chives, minced for garnish (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Over medium-high heat, in a heavy, medium nonstick skillet, heat 1 tsp oil. Add chopped sausage and saute until sausage is heated through, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in cream cheese and 1/4 tsp pepper; mix well.
  3. Brush both sides of mushrooms lightly with remaining olive oil. Place mushroom caps, cavity side up, on baking sheet sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Fill each cavity with sausage mixture. Lightly sprinkle each with Parmesan.
  4. Bake mushrooms in preheated oven for 7 to 8 minutes or until hot throughout. Sprinkle each with minced chives for garnish.


Maple-Glazed Hakurei Turnip and Shiitake on Soba Noodles 



  • About 3/4 pound of Hakurei turnip (minus the leaves)
  • A handful of Hakurei turnip leaves (about a dozen leaves)
  • 2 oz shiitake mushrooms (about 8 medium-sized mushrooms)
  • 1/4 cup light, un-toasted sesame oil (see modified instructions below if using dark toasted sesame oil)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 pound of buckwheat soba noodles
  • 2 Tbsp tamari or shoyu sauce
  • 1 Tbsp rice vinegar (or mirin)
  • 1 Tbsp fish sauce
  • Optional: fresh cilantro and sesame seeds for garnish


  1. Wash the turnips and leaves well. Finely slice the handful of turnip leaves. (Place the rest of the leaves aside to use in another dish). Cut the turnips into bite-sized pieces. If they are small, you can simply cut them in half. If they are larger, cut them into quarters or roughly 3/4 inch cubes. Remove the tough stems from the shiitake mushrooms (I put mine in a freezer bag to make stock later). Slice the shiitake tops thinly.
  2. In a skillet, warm 2 Tbsp of the light sesame oil over medium heat. (If using dark, toasted sesame oil, it has a much stronger flavor so use 2 Tbsp butter or olive oil instead of sesame oil for this part of the recipe. Use the dark sesame oil only in the dressing for the noodles). Add the chopped turnips, mushrooms, and salt into the warmed oil and sauté for about 1 minute. Add the 1 1/2 Tbsp maple syrup and 2 Tbsp of water. After about 5 minutes, the water will have evaporated and the turnips and mushrooms will be nicely glazed. At this point, add the sliced turnip greens and cook until wilted and dark green, about 1 more minute. Remove from heat.
  3. While you prepare the glazed turnips and mushrooms, place a large pot filled with 8 cups of water on high heat. Once the water is boiling, add the soba noodles. Cook according to package directions (usually they are done in about 7 minutes). Do not overcook the noodles. As soon as they are done, drain all the water out and rinse the noodles in cold water to remove excess starch (this gives the noodles a lovely texture and ensures they won’t clump). If the noodles are too cold after rinsing, quickly dunk them in a fresh pot of boiling water.
  4. In a medium-sized bowl, mix the remaining 2 Tbsp sesame oil, the tamari or shoyu sauce, the rice vinegar, and the fish sauce. Stir well and then add the drained noodles, tossing gently to coat the noodles well.
  5. Serve the noodles with the glazed turnips and mushrooms and garnish with a little cilantro and sesame seeds.





14 ounces Blue Hubbard Squash puree, divided

1 Egg, beaten

3 ½ ounces Butter, melted

1 Cup Milk

1 Cup Walnuts, chopped

12 ounces Flour

1 Cup Sugar

1 teaspoon Baking Soda

½ teaspoon Salt

1 Tablespoon Baking Powder


Oven 350F

Whisk Flour, Salt, Sugar, Baking Powder & Baking Soda together in a large bowl. In a separate bowl combine 7 ounces Squash, Egg, Butter and half the Nuts, the add ½ Cup Milk. Mix wet ingredients into the dry and fold in with a large spatula- pour in more milk until you have a thick batter that is not too runny. Transfer batter evenly into a 9 x 13 inch baking dish and spoon the remaining Squash in 3 lines along the length of the batter.

Sprinkle with remaining Walnuts and place on middle rack of oven for 35 minutes, then reduce heat to 325F for a further 10 – 15 minutes. Test that cake is done by inserting a knife or cake tester in the middle and ensuring that it comes out clean with no batter sticking. Cool to room temperature before cutting into portions.


Grilled Portobello Mushrooms 



  • 3 portobello mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 3 tablespoons chopped onion


  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar


  1. Clean mushrooms and remove stems, reserve for other use. Place caps on a plate with the gills up.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the oil, onion, garlic and vinegar. Pour mixture evenly over the mushroom caps and let stand for 1 hour.
  3. Grill over hot grill for 10 minutes. Serve immediately.



From the Mesa Top: March 9, 2017

Climatology 2017:  The spring pattern of weather is for sure upon us now.  Warm, dry, pleasant days, interspersed with wicked windy days which are the southern reach of storms blowing through the central and northern Rockies.

From the Wild:  The water level on the reservoir is holding at a healthy level.  The micro-aquifer is well saturated, and clear water is seeping through downstream from the reservoir.  The water level in our hand dug well has 10 feet of water in it also.

We have completed our exclusion fence so that cows cannot get to the water edge and get stuck in the muck.

This also means that work can begin on improving the shore vegetation and improving habitat for migratory birds.

We saw a flock of half a dozen ducks today, including a very strikingly colored male.  Typically we see wood ducks, but these are something different… Not yet identified


Cow stories:  Bow is on the milk line.  A line of one right now.  Now that milking has begun, the kinks can be worked out of the dairy room, and we can begin again to inch our way toward inspection as a grade A facility.

The main cow herd are still basking in the sun and gorging on hay.  The check book says to PLEASE kick them out on pasture:  try to avoid more hay expenses.

But the pastures are a month or more from beginning to grow much at all.

The seasonal struggle to find standing forage is about to get under way.

Still plenty of fences to repair

Beneficial birds:  One more flock of pullets to be started soon at Mesa Top.  Other producers also contributing to the “Beneficial” brand.  New logo and carton and web site in the works.

Thank you for your support of our local farms and farm families,

The Warshawer/Swendson/Agard Family

Beneficial Farm CSA


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