This week is full of new flavors! **Fava beans (see allergy info linked below)! Rabbit! Guinea! and lots more. As you know , we are by no means the only farm with a CSA program, but I believe that we are unique in our ability to provide varieties like what you see this week. And yet, this ability is founded in proper land stewardship and not merely for marketing. This week, I’m showing you behind the scenes on how the animals and plants we bring you each week actually work within the farm eco-system to strengthen it as a whole. For example, the Serengeti Grazing Model that we employ at White Oak Pastures is founded on the idea of using multiple species that utilize and replenish different elemental resources from and for the land. The large and medium-sized ruminants fill several niches on the farm, but the various fowl we raise serve purposes too. The species we’re highlighting this week, Guinea fowl, are highly effective insect and seed eaters which make them valuable team members for sanitizing against pests and picking out competition weed seeds. They are natives of Africa and I fell in love with them during Peace Corps service in Tanzania. Here are a couple tasty recipes to try…
Guinea with Blood Orange and Thyme: by Food Network, Jaime Oliver
And we’re also introducing rabbit this week. Our rabbits provide the highest quality fertilizer to our fast-growing orchard and in return, the dense leaf canopy will provide shade for the rabbits during the hotter parts of the year. Here are some more recipe options for the rabbit this week:
Finally, you may notice that the Collards and Kale in your box are bunched differently than normal. As we prepare to harvest from the new Spring Crops, we have begun allowing the winter brassicas to “bolt” (or, go to flower before seeding). This stage of plant growth is important, not only to plants, but also to predator insects on the farm who rely on mature plant stages to complete various stages of their own life cycles. Take time to notice the difference between the leave formations and thickness of the stalks this week and next versus those that you see towards May.
Alright, let’s get down to the business in the kitchen: First some pictures, and then the goods…
Meat CSA: (call us on Monday by noon for any additional a la carte orders: 229-641-2081 – web orders click here)
Whole Guinea (2-2.5 lbs) – Free-range, pastured, Guinea hen. Our Guineas are raised along side our other poultry with no antibiotics or added hormones.
Rabbit (Whole or 8-way) – American Chinchilla rabbits raised on pasture at White Oak Pastures.
Pasture Raised Eggs:
1 dozen beautiful brown eggs from our own lovely ladies that range freely on certified organic pasture. The eggs are washed, candled and graded fresh for you each week. (We’ll have more egg shares available in May! Please email me or call our office today to get on the waiting list! 229-641-2081)
**Also, please tell your friends and family who live near Atlanta that our eggs are now available in all 8 Atlanta Whole Foods Markets. We rely on word of mouth so much and as CSA members, you know our story best. Thanks again to all of you who help spread the word each week.
Certified Organic Vegetables:
Salad Mix w/ Spinach – The true taste of Spring in a convenient triple washed bag of green goodness.
Stir-fry Mix – Mix into your salad mix for a little spice, or flavor any meal with this tasty and nutritious green addition
Georgia Collards OR Swiss Chard – Your collards are harvested on the main stem as we are slowly transitioning to the next crop and removing plants from the field after flowering. Limited Swiss Chard this week.
Red Russian Kale – More Green Goodness. The hits just keep on coming!
French Breakfast Radishes – We’re pickling lots of these this week for a fresh batch of pickles.
Hakurei “Salad” Turnips – These amazing albino beauties are perfect for eating raw, or adding to salads or any meal that calls for a root veggie. You may remember these from the jars a few weeks ago. Delicious!
Organic Herb: Rosemary – Rosemary can be used in all of the recipes linked above for the Rabbit and Guinea. But rosemary is also a terrific addition to morning eggs and other veggie dishes.
**Fava beans – Click HERE to learn about allergy information and more than you probably want to know about Favas, also called Broad beans. Everyone gets a pound of these little wonders, still in the shell. In Nepal, they are eaten as a green vegetable when the pods are young, generally stir-fried with garlic. I’m recommending shelling your beans this week and adding them in with the turnips and stir-fry mix with some toasted sesame oil and pine nuts. Here are more ideas: