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Dinner

Last week I attended the Farm Fish Come Together dinner at Swans Trail Farms in Snohomish. This dinner was hosted by the Sustainable Land Strategy (SLS) of Snohomish County. I have been Co-chair of this group for the last 4 years and every other year the SLS Executive committee host a dinner for farmers, policy makers and elected officials.

It is a powerful time to interact face to face with all the Natural Resource community. At my table were folks from Fish and Wildlife, the Puget Sound Partnership, State Legislator Derek Stanford, Terry Williams for the Tulalip Tribes and Rob Duff from the Governor’s office. The SLS hosts this dinner as meet and greet, because we believe that open dialogue about our limited natural resources between land owners and those that are tasked with managing/regulating the natural resources should find noncombative ways to work together. This is a different approach than what we are seeing unfold in DC or for that matter anywhere politics is in play. But as Dan Bartelheimer, the Snohomish County Farm Bureau President shared with the entire group, “we have more in common than less and most of us are sitting on the same side of the table.” He is absolutely right!

I have been involved in Snohomish County Land use and farmland preservation for over two decades and have donated thousands of hours during that time to imagine a community with farmers farming the land and rivers filled with Salmon. And I earnestly believe, that planning for local farmland, local food and habitat are critical for the future residents of Puget Sound.  This is no easy task when you consider the effects of climate change, sea level rise, and water shortages. And add the need for housing, education and mental health, so many compelling and real needs to balance. There is so much to consider and planning is the only way to go forward, but planning built upon relationships and from the ground up is best way to go forward.

And happily, in Puget Sound there is an earnest desire to work together from the farmer to the Governor’s mansion. Collaboration is the key to unlock a vibrant future for local food producers and for local habitat. We can have both and the Sustainable Land Strategy of Snohomish County is hard at work as a nonregulatory advisory committee. And the Farm Fish Come Together Dinner was just one part of this strategy that builds relationships to ensure a vibrant local farm community and the local habitat that make this place so beautiful!

Your Farmer and health advocate

 

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Fall Beans

Fall Beans

3,000 pounds of green beans! That is a lot of handpicked and hand selected nutrition. This has been an incredible farm season. The weather was manageable. It wasn’t too hot, it wasn’t too cold, and most rain events were welcomed. The smoke? Not so much!

Now that we are transitioning to Fall, the farm work shifts to putting the farm to “bed”. We are actively working ground that we are rotating to pasture that will be hayed for the next 3-5 years. We are also prepping the ground for garlic that we hope to plant in two weeks.

Speaking of garlic, this year’s crop was so good, large flavorful bulbs. I use garlic all the time for cooking. If I am roasting potatoes, beets, onions, or all of the above, I always toss in a few cloves. If I am sautéing or making a stir fry, I slice the garlic much like slivered almonds. And if I want to intensify the flavor of soup, I will mince it or use the garlic press add it that way. I am a big fan of garlic.

And since we are talking about garlic, John and I have decided to grow next year’s crop in hills that are going to be about 10” tall and 15” across the top. We are hoping that this will make it easier to harvest them next year. I am always tinkering and trying to find the best way to harvest or plant or just have a little less work.

Back to the farm, we are picking our last planting of green beans this week and next week. Fall beans tend to come on slower and yield a little less, but they also tend to hold a little longer on the vine than the summer plantings. A lot of growers will plant different varieties of the same crop at different times throughout the year. We see this with sweet corn where they want to stagger the harvest or tree fruit where you plant an early August apple, followed by a September apple.

Unfortunately, Organic growers, when it comes to green beans, have less options. But the Strike Bean seed happily grows from May – Frost and this year it did not disappoint. Beans are my go to snack when I am in the field – crisp, tender green beans.

Bon Appetit,
Thanks for eating Klesick Farms green beans and garlic! Tristan

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Changes

This week we are rolling out some new features that will make shopping with Klesick’s even easier! The primary change is a new reminder email that lets you know what’s coming your way, and also incorporates the option to add to or change your order quickly. Tuesday and Wednesday customers will get the email reminder on Friday’s and will have till Monday Morning at 8am to make changes to your order. Our Thursday, Friday and Saturday customers will receive the same email on Monday Mornings. I am really excited about this new benefit that will make it even easier to eat heathier. Below is a copy of the email that was sent to each of you this week, explaining the changes.

 

Life is so busy and especially for working families, but no matter what season of life you find yourself in, life can be busy. This week we are introducing a new email/order page that will serve as, both, a reminder about your next order and what’s in it as well as my favorite additional picks for the week. As I talk with other farmers and suppliers, I wanted a way to highlight just a few more produce or grocery items that can be easily added to your deliveries. I think this email will make it even easier to eat healthy!

You will notice that your next order is listed first and then a list of “Tristan’s top picks for the week” follows. The beautiful thing about this list is that it is super easy to add items from this list that are in season and super healthy. And when you choose to add them to your order, the items you pick will only be added to your next delivery and then drop off. Your standing order will remain unchanged. And then when your next delivery is scheduled you will receive another email reminder with my top picks for that week. Of course, you can add any item to arrive weekly or every other week, but for “Tristan’s Top Picks” these will be added to your next delivery only.

Pesto anyone! This week we are featuring beautiful Bulk Basil from Blue Heron Farms in Concrete and you can use our new shopping concept to add the basil to next week’s order.

 

I am so excited about this change. Making eating healthier simpler and more convenient, what’s not to love about that. I am also excited about the new section “Tristan’s Top Picks for the Week”. The farming and fresh fruits and vegetable world is dynamic and always changing and this section will be devoted to highlighting the seasonal nature of the produce world.

Another change we are going to be devoting space to our newsletter that highlights the phytochemicals and plant compounds that are unique to produce, and this week we are featuring Green Cabbage.

 

Featured Recipe

Cabbage Soup

Prep Time: 10 mins  |  Cook Time: 30 mins  |  Total Time: 40 mins  |  Servings: 8-10

This soup/stew can be made ahead of time and frozen (or freeze leftovers). In fact, it originally was made just for that purpose. Make it with or without the meat, switch out the beef broth for vegetable broth and it’s vegan! Hearty and super easy. A crowd pleaser on cold nights. You can find the blog post at https://gooddinnermom.com/cabbage-soup

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or avocado oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 cup celery ribs and leaves, chopped
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 2 15- ounce cans kidney beans, not drained
  • 3 cups chopped or shredded cabbage
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • 2 15- ounce cans stewed tomatoes, not drained
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley or chives for garnish, optional

Instructions ­

  1. In a dutch-oven, add the olive oil and butter and heat to medium until butter has melted. Add onions and celery and begin to cook while you break up the ground beef. You can just break it up in the pot or roll it into small, loose meatballs before adding. Cook the onion, celery and beef mixture over medium heat until the beef just starts to cook on the outside.
  2. Stir in the undrained kidney beans, cabbage, stewed tomatoes and all the seasonings. Stir and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer at least 30 minutes but up to 1 hour, until the cabbage has softened and the broth has thickened.
  3. Sprinkle individual servings with fresh parsley or chives, if desired.
  4. Serve immediately or if wanting to freeze the soup, allow the soup to cool and then place in freezer-safe containers or gallon freezer bag.
  5. To reheat from frozen: Thaw in refrigerator overnight. Reheat to slow boil. Serve!