Over the coming months we’ll be featuring some of our H2A visa employees in the Good Eats newsletter. We’ve been using the H2A visa program for over ten years and though the program is logistically challenging to navigate we’re grateful it exists. We’ve really enjoyed the cultural and language diversity our friends from Mexico and Jamaica have brought to our farm and our town.
Today we feature Juan Carlos, a good-natured basketball phenom who grew up on an island in Lago de Patzcuaro in central Mexico.
Juan Carlos Campos Reyes is 37 years old and lives on the island Janitzio in the State of Michoacan. His partner is Camila and he has a 3 year old son Carlos Daniel and a one year old daughter Camila Campos Baslio. We visited Juan’s island a few winters ago. It rises steeply from the lake on all sides and is thickly populated. As you approach the island old men fish with nets. We arrived unannounced and asked the first people we saw where our friends live. Though 6,000 people live on the island they knew exactly who we were asking for and showed us the way to their house. Juan says that he knows all 6,000 people on the island and that everyone on the island knows everyone else. Think about that, knowing all 6,000 people in your neighborhood! The Island was originally settled because coyotes were eating the chickens on the mainland but there were no chicken predators on the Island.
Everyone on the island speaks the indigenous language Purepecha as their first language. They learn Spanish in school. Juan is trilingual as his English is solid. St. Geronimo is the patron saint of the island and Sept. 30 is the big celebration of Geronimo. Fish soup is served that day. The food Juan misses most when in Vermont is mole, yellow rice, chicken and chile guajillo.
Juan has worked at PG for 8 years. Before that he worked in CO, AR, and MT harvesting blueberries, blackberries, cabbage and lettuce. He has been coming to the US since 2005. At PG he specializes in the final packing of produce for shipping. He’s often the first person into the washhouse to start the day. Before 2005 Juan fished the lake back home. It used to be filled with whitefish, trout and turtles but overfishing and in introduction of carp have reduced the native fish. Juan is a great swimmer and boatman as he grew up on the water.
Juan is really, really good at basketball. I wouldn’t want to say he is cocky exactly, but there is no shortage of confidence. He may have lost ½ a step from his prime, but I remember a hard fought and heated game with some local guys a few years back in which Juan finished the game with 20 swishes from impossible angles as night was falling. I was glad he was on my team. There isn’t room on the island for playing fields but they have several basketball courts and basketball courses through the veins of all Islanders. On Sunday the whole community gathers to watch the action that culminates in a championship game late in the day. Juan first became interested in playing as a youngster because he was able to bet on the games and win enough money to buy a sandwich for lunch at school.
Juan is building a house on the Island. It will cost around $10,000 to finish and is made of concrete and rebar. There are no internal combustion engines allowed on the island. Everything is hauled by hand. When we visited, another friend Hector was hauling rocks for his house several hundred vertical feet up the island on his back. Tough guys. When Juan is home in the winter he works in a restaurant where he makes $3.50 per day. He makes 45 TIMES more $ per hour working at PG than at home.
On Janitzio everyone takes care of each other. Recently a young man died unexpectedly and everyone pitched in with food and money to help the family out. In a tradition I wasn’t familiar with, the young man was married to the dead in his funeral so that he wouldn’t be alone in the afterlife. Juan likes Craftsbury because he sees the same community spirit as home.
The shares will be located inside the back doors.
The church has started to let people back inside, so your shares are located in the doors behind where the outdoor pickup site had been set up.
IT'S A MEAT WEEK!
This week's meat share will contain:
Pete's Pastured Chicken
North Country Smokehouse Hotdogs
Sawmill Brook Ground Beef
LeBlanc Family Farm Chorizo Sausage
This week in your share:
Fancy / Localvore
French Breakfast Radish
Lean & Green
Red Russian Kale
Take a purple bag!
Take a yellow bag!
Take a green bag!
*Your tomatoes will be packed separately in brown paper bags.
**Your strawberries will be out of the bag! Please take one carton based on your checklist.
Pantry/ Localvore Shares and Pantry Add-Ons
This week's pantry/ localvore pantry items are Hurricaine Flats Red Popcorn, Eggs from Axel or Maple Wind Farm, Pete's Greens Chimichurri and Strawberries from Woods Market Garden. Please read more below.
Cheese Shares: Cheese is OUT of the bag. This week's cheese share is Mt. Alice from von Trapp Farmstead. The cheese is labeled with your name.
Egg Shares: These are delivered OUT OF THE BAG. You'll find your dozen labeled with your name. Note that for the next several weeks your eggs will be a mix of full size eggs and smaller eggs. This won't last long! Axel's young hens have begun to lay and pullets lay small eggs for the first few weeks. They will size up over the next few weeks.
Bread Shares: These are delivered OUT OF THE BAG. This week's bread share comes from Elmore Mountain Bread.
Milk Shares: These are delivered OUT OF THE BAG. They are in a cooler. Our milk share comes from Sweet Rowen Farmstead in West Glover. Paul used to work at Pete's Greens years ago, but now he is milking a small herd of heritage Lineback cows. His milk has a delightfully grassy flavor, as his cows are pasture-raised. He leaves it cream-top, and pasteurizes it over very gentle heat in order to reduce human interference as much as possible! This milk is bottled fresh for you on Tuesday nights! These are delivered OUT OF THE BAG. They are in a cooler.
Store orders: Everything ordered from the store is packed separately.
A Few Notes...
To help us plan out our veggie availability and schedule with our non-veggie producers, we need to have all orders for the coming week placed by Friday night for the next week's delivery. The Sunday night deadline is just too tight for us!
If you ordered any bulk items in the store this week, they will be OUT OF THE BAG. They will have a label with your name on it. Store orders must be placed by Friday night of the week before delivery.
Continuing your Good Eats CSA into the summer? No changes are necessary to your member account! If you are on auto-renewal, your deliveries are ongoing no matter what season we are in. No waitlist is necessary! We encourage new or returning members to let us know if they want to switch their share as soon as possible as space may be limited at some sites or for some shares. If you are interested in helping us spread the word about our CSA, let us know!
Need some help getting the hang of our online member portal?
Hurricane Flats Red Popcorn: Organically grown ruby red popcorn from Royalton. This popcorn pops white, and has a rich nutty flavor. The growers claim that it is too good for butter! Try it out lightly salted with sea salt and see for yourself!
Pete's Greens Chimichurri: Our chimi is made with our own organic garlic, cilantro, and parsley. With cider vinegar and lemon juice, this herbaceous and slightly tart, slightly spicy condiment is perfect on anything! Traditionally used in Argentina on steaks, chimichurri is also excellent as a marinade for other meats, or as seasoning for roasted vegetables.
Eggs: Pastured, local eggs with deep golden yolks. It doesn't get much better than that! These eggs are rich and perfect for breakfast, baking, or anything else you use eggs for!
Woods Market Garden Strawberries (Pints): These strawberries from Brandon are absolutely perfect, juicy, and sweet. Nothing beats the first harvest of strawberries at the start of the season. They are the most flavorful and special of the entire year! .
Mesclun: Store your baby greens in an airtight food storage container lined with a paper towel. For longest-lasting freshness, toss your greens in their container every couple of days to improve air flow and keep them from wilting down on themselves.
Napa Cabbage: Store your cabbage wrapped in plastic in your crisper drawer.
Carrot, Beet, and Radish Tops: Store the leafy tops of your bunches wrapped in plastic in your crisper drawer until you are ready to use them.
Scallions: You can store your scallions wrapped in a damp paper towel inside of a plastic bag in your crisper drawer. Alternatively, store like you would cilantro: with the ends in a jar of water, and covered with a plastic bag.
Zucchini:Store your zucchini in a perforated or loosely closed bag in your crisper drawer
Romaine: Store your romaine wrapped in a damp paper towel within a plastic bag.
Tomatoes: Store your tomatoes in a dark, cool spot on your kitchen counter. They will be sad if you store them in the fridge!
Visit our store!
Do you need some pastured chicken, cheese, yogurt, dried beans, flour or cornmeal or oats next week?
All of these are available in our online store, you can add these items and have them delivered along with your share next week!
Orders must be placed by Friday at midnight for the following week’s share.
We know a lot of you are baking and cooking up a storm these days! If that's you and you've found a great way to use your CSA ingredients, we want to know! Share with us in our Facebook group or email us your recipe (pictures, too)! We'd love to feature it in a future newsletter, and to know what our members are eating these days.
Tomato Burrata Salad with Garlic Toasts:
1 (8- to 10-ounce) ball of fresh burrata cheese
1 lb heirloom tomatoes
Aged balsamic vinegar
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
20 fresh basil leaves, julienned
Fleur de sel or Maldon sea salt
Garlic Toasts (see recipe)
Cut each ball of cheese in half crosswise and place the halves, cut side down, on 4 salad plates. Cut each tomato into wedges and distribute them around the burrata.
Drizzle the tomatoes and burrata generously with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and sprinkle with kosher salt and pepper.
Scatter the basil on the salads, sprinkle with fleur de sel, and serve with Garlic Toasts.
Garlic Toasts (Makes 20 to 25 Toasts)
1/4 cup good olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 garlic clove, halved lengthwise
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Slice the baguette diagonally into ¼-inch-thick slices. Depending on the size of the baguette, you should get 20 to 25 slices.
Lay the slices in one layer on a baking sheet, brush each with olive oil, and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Bake the toasts for 15 to 20 minutes, until they are browned and crisp. As soon as they are cool enough to handle, rub one side of the toasts with the cut side of the garlic. Serve at room temperature.
Beet Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette:
For the Salad:
4 medium beets
3/4 cup feta cheese
2 tbsp. finely chopped cilantro
For the Vinaigrette:
Juice of 1 orange
Juice of 1 lime
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp. honey
1/2 tbsp. dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. salt
1 clove garlic
Cut the tops off the beets. Place the beets in a large pot and cover with 2″ of water. Bring to a boil then reduce to low and cook for 45 minutes.
Set the beets aside and allow to cool.
Peel the beets once they are cool to the touch.
Cut the beets into 1″ pieces.
In a small mixing bowl add the orange juice, lime juice, balsamic, vinegar, honey, and dijon mustard.
Whisk the ingredients briskly while slowly pouring in the olive oil.
Whisk vigorously until the ingredients have combined.
Add the chopped garlic and salt. Whisk in incorporate.
Divide the beets in 4 small salad bowls.
Top with crumbled feta cheese and chopped cilantro.
Lightly dress with vinaigrette.
Serve at room temperature or lightly chilled.
Strawberry and basil salad:
You can make your own balsamic glaze by simmering regular balsamic vinegar in a saucepan over medium-low heat for about 10-15 minutes until it has reduced by 50%
1 pound fresh strawberries, diced
Optional: 1 to 2 teaspoons honey or maple syrup, to taste
2 ounces crumbled goat cheese (about ½ cup)
¼ cup chopped fresh basil, plus a few small basil leaves for garnish
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic glaze
½ teaspoon Maldon flaky sea salt or a scant ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Spread the diced strawberries across a medium serving platter or shallow serving bowl. If the strawberries aren’t sweet enough to your liking, toss them with a bit of honey or maple syrup.
Sprinkle the crumbled goat cheese over the strawberries, followed by the chopped basil. Drizzle the olive oil and balsamic vinegar on top.
Finish off the salad with the salt, a few twists of freshly ground black pepper, and the reserved basil leaves. For the most beautiful presentation, serve the salad promptly. Leftovers will keep well in the refrigerator, though, for about 3 days.
2 ounces grated pecorino or Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Use a box grater or food processor to coarsely grate the zucchini.
In a wide, deep sauté pan or sauce pan over low heat, warm 3 tablespoons olive oil. Add the onion along with a good pinch of salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and translucent, 7 to 10 minutes.
Add the rice to the pan and stir until the grains of rice are glistening and thoroughly coated, about 2 minutes. Pour in the white wine and bring the heat up to medium. Let the wine simmer until almost completely absorbed, about 5 minutes. Then add just enough warm vegetable broth to cover the rice, about 1 ladleful or 3/4 cup.
Continue to cook, stirring occasionally and adding a ladleful of broth at a time as the liquid reduces (about every 5 minutes).
After 10 to 15 minutes, add the grated zucchini. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, and topping up with broth as needed for another 7 to 10 minutes, or until the rice is al dente.
With the last addition of broth, add the grated cheese, if using, and salt to taste. Add 1 tablespoon oil and stir until the risotto becomes creamy but still loose and remove from heat & serve.
Carrot, Radish, and Potato Salad:
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
Freshly ground black pepper
8 cups water
2/3 cup dry white vermouth
3 cloves garlic, smashed
2 tablespoons kosher salt plus additional for seasoning
1 sprig fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
4 black peppercorns
2 pounds small red-skinned waxy potatoes, sliced into 1/8-inch-thick rounds
5 medium carrots, peeled and sliced into 1/8-inch-thick rounds
1 bunch radishes, sliced into 1/8-inch-thick rounds (about 8)
1/2 English cucumber or 1 large Kirby cucumber, sliced into 1/8-inch-thick rounds
1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
3 scallions (white and green parts), thinly sliced
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup lightly packed chopped mixed fresh herbs, such as flat-leaf parsley, dill, or tarragon
6 lemon wedges
For the dressing: Smash the garlic cloves, sprinkle with the salt, and, with the flat side of a large knife, mash and smear the mixture to a coarse paste. Put in a bowl and whisk with the mayonnaise, vinegar, and black pepper to taste.
For the salad: Put the water, vermouth, garlic, salt, thyme, bay leaf, peppercorns, and potatoes in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Add the carrots, lower the heat, and cook until the vegetables are tender but not mushy, about 5 minutes. Stir in the radishes, then immediately drain all the vegetables in a colander in the sink. Remove and discard the garlic, thyme, bay leaf, and peppercorns. Cool slightly and toss the vegetables with the dressing. Cover and refrigerate about 30 minutes. (The salad can be prepared up to this point a day ahead.)
About 10 minutes before serving, toss the cucumber, tomatoes, and scallions in a small bowl with salt and black pepper to taste. When ready to serve, fold the cucumber mixture and herbs into the potato salad. Serve with lemon wedges.
I will probably get some pushback on this, as I know in Vermont it is traditional to use biscuits when making shortcake, but I grew up out west, and we exclusively use poundcake for strawberry shortcake.
For the Pound Cake:
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for pan
1 cup sugar
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
For the Strawberries:
1 lb strawberries
2 tablespoons sugar
For the Whipped Cream:
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons sugar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 6-cup (8 1/2-by-4 1/2-inch) loaf pan; set aside.
Using an electric mixer on high speed, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition; add vanilla and salt. With mixer on low, gradually add flour, beating just until combined (be careful to not over mix).
Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, about 1 hour (tent with aluminum foil if browning too quickly). Let cool in pan 15 minutes. Invert onto a wire rack, and turn upright to cool completely.
Meanwhile, slice your berries and toss with the sugar. Set aside.
Place the heavy cream in a chilled mixing bowl and whisk until it forms soft peaks. Add the sugar and continue to whisk until you have stiff peaks. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Slice your cooled poundcake and top with the macerated strawberries and whipped cream.
Radish and Carrot Top Pesto:
1/4 cup walnuts
1/4 cup pecans
1–3 cloves garlic (to taste) diced
1 cup carrot tops, lightly chopped
1 cup radish tops, lightly chopped
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup grated Asiago cheese
1/4 cup olive oil
Preheat oven to 350°.
Place nuts on a baking sheet and bake for 8 to10 minutes, until fragrant, to bring out their flavor.
Let nuts cool briefly before coarsely chopping them with garlic in the food processor.
Add the remaining ingredients and pulse until desired consistency
Spoon the pesto into a bowl and season to taste with salt and pepper.