Friday, August 31, 2012

Sorry I'm Late

(I have had computer problems all week and finally got back on track.  Sorry I was not able to post earlier in the week)

Got word from Andy that things are pretty dry out on the farm but with the irrigation system that they have in place, they are getting by okay.  He is loving the temperatures and says that it is enjoyable to work outside.  And let me tell you that he and the kids spend lots of time outside.  Lizzie is taking it easy a bit more these days.  She is 'in the family way' and is due mid November.  I am so excited about this.  Another one of those cute Hershberger kids to make over.  Speaking of their children...Anna is looking forward to going to school next year.  She works hard learning school things from her parents.  Dennis is all boy from what I can tell.  He has finally warmed up to me and smiles at me when I visit.  Moses is walking!  That is so hard for me to believe.  It seems like just yesterday Lizzie was handing him to me for the first time.  And he has the lightest blonde hair.

As far a the farm and plantings go..turnips and radishes were just planted and we should be seeing those in our boxes later in the fall.

Things must really be busy on the farm because the newsletter from the CSA was short this week.  And Lizzie must be canning because she didn't have time to find a recipe.  So I shared one that I discovered this week...Corn In The Oven or Baked Corn so call it.  It was really good...I was concerned when I put those delicious ears of corn in the oven.  I was surprised at the taste.  We will be making it again real soon.

There are some new faces on the farm...

These little kittens will grow up to be the barn cats that help keep the rodent population in check.  They are really cute and awfully shy right now.  The kids will climb under and over anything to get to them.  I hope they survive all that 'special love and care'...they just love them to death.

Recipe Of The Week: Bakes Corn

Baked Corn
or Corn In The Oven

This is so simple  and so very good.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Placed corn as it is (no shucking required) directly on the center rack of the oven.  Bake for 30 minutes.  Carefully remove...they will be hot!

Recipe Share

  I got an email from Christine at Christine's Kitchen with some wonderful sounds recipes for all the good vegetables that have been coming in our CSA boxes.  Now to figure out which one we will be dining on first...that is the tough question.

Tomato and Corn Pie (best thing I've made all summer!) -

BLT Corn Salad Wrap -

Pasta with Grilled Tomato Sauce -

Buttermilk Grilled Chicken with Garden Vegetable Salsa -

Zucchini Brownies -

Summer Corn Fettuccine -

Creamed Corn -

Spicy Garlic and Shrimp Green Beans (or use whatever meat you want or simply the beans) -

Okra Fritters with Grilled Corn and Goat Cheese -

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Good Weather = Good Food

The weather on the farm is delightful...cooler and that means that it is nice to work outside.  But it still a little bit on the dry side.  We had a little rain this morning and it looks like it could rain again.  But the ground is so dry that it has already soaked all the moisture up.  

There are lots of good veggies coming our way...sweet corn, cantaloupes, tomatoes, and green beans.

I love it on Tuesdays when my porch looks like this!

Can't any that beets are my favorites but I am willing to give them a try.  Lizzie has a stir fry recipe for us this week.  See it below.

Pecan nut is my all time favorite pie.  So much so this will make the third one in as many weeks.  Got me a major pecan pie sweet tooth.  Just had a piece for breakfast as a matter of fact.
I'm telling you now that if you haven't tried some of the baked are missing out!

Growing all this good food is a process and learning about organic farming is a process also.  It is not easy by any means.   In the last post I wrote about cover crops and composting.  Now I am learning about soil amendments that Andy uses on the farm.  Andy has to make sure that the calcium level is just right in the soil for the plants.  To maintain adequate calcium levels they put on High Calcium Lime and or Gypsum.  High Calcium Lime usually is only used once every three or four years.Gypsum is mixed in every year.  Andy also uses an organic fertilizer, Re-Vita Pro that is made of composted poultry manure and has some kelp added in. It contains three very important minerals...nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium...with some other trace elements mixed in.Believe it or not they also use products from the ocean like fish, kelp and seaweed products.  the products are loaded with minerals and re very helpful in growing nutrient dense food.  Which means healthier food for us to put into our bodies.  Also this year Andy has started using a few new farming tools...refractometer, and a PH meter to check the plants to see what minerals they are still needing.  They have made progress with the heirloom tomatoes that we are finding in our boxes.

And Andy wants to let you all know that there are some Fall Shares still available.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Recipe Of The Week: Stir Fired Red Beets

Stir Fried Red Beets

3 cups of shredded beets
2 Tablespoons of butter or Olive Oil
1 teaspoon of salt

Heat oil or butter in skillet.  Add the shredded beets and salt.  Heat till nice and soft.  Enjoy

(I can say that I am not a big beet fan...that would be my husband.  Last year I canned a few quarts and they were pretty darn good, if I do say so myself.  This will be the first time we have tried stir fried beets.  Didn't know you could do that!  I will be giving it a try tomorrow for dinner with our pork tenderloin.)

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Halfway Point

It is so hard to imagine that this is week 16th week of our 32 week season of CSA...we are half way to the end!  Andy is pleased with the season and he hopes it will stay that way until the end of the season this year.

I hate to report yet another wind storm at the farm.  This time some trellised tomatoes were blown over.  Nothing serious and Andy thinks wit the help of Lizzie's brother they should be able ti tie them back up to keep them off the ground.  Some of the stakes will have to be replaced but the tomato plants survived.  Everything else seemed to make it thru the storm alright.

A few weeks ago, after the windstorm that destroyed the large greenhouse, one of the CSA members came up with the idea of helping Andy and Lizzie rebuild the greenhouse by asking for donations for the CSA members....the CSA community helping just like the Amish community pitches in to help each other in times of trouble. We were able to raise over $900 dollars!  Not only helping Andy and Lizzie but also others in the community that raise food for the CSA.  It will be enough to cover the cost of the rebuild with maybe even a little upgrade.  They are overflowing with gratitude and thanks! And consider the members a blessing for sure.

I can feel the vitamins being sucked in thru my pores.  A box of all things good!  We will be having some 'purple fries' tomorrow night for dinner.  I think the carrots might already be gone!  
And probably some of Lizzie's corn casserole.  A big green salad.  Some sliced tomatoes.  Shoot with all this goodness, who needs meat!

I am still trying to learn all I can about what makes organic farming better for you.  Today's modernized agricultural world is largely focused on three nutrients:  nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.  Although these three are indeed very important, we do not need to overlook that may trace minerals and other nutrients that are often ignored by most farmers in the US today.  I really don't think the farmers are so much at fault.  It boils down to the huge industries that sell us all their 'junk' to the farmers.  The farmers are then able to grow larger quantities therefore more money in their pockets.  if the truth be told the vegetables that are bought in the grocery store have very little traces of the three nutrients.

Yes, these farmers are producing a large quantity of foods but most of the plants don't have a good defense system and are more prone to insects ans disease.  But these big farmers have a cure for this...just cover them with more chemicals to get rid of the pests.  If the insects and disease become resistant to that...just use another dose, maybe something bigger and better.  As for killing weeds that surround the crops...just spray some chemicals on them too to get rid of them.  the way I understand it is...companies use chemicals to grow bigger and more.  Some of those things aren't good for our bodies.  Cedarmore Farm wants us to have the best possible food that we can put in our bodies without all the harmful chemicals.  I'll take organic anytime!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Recipe Of The Week: Corn Casserole

Corn Casserole

1 1/2 cups of fresh corn
1/2 cup of chopped onions
1/2 cup of green pepper strips
1/2 cup of water
1 cup of chopped yellow squash or zucchini
1 cup of chopped tomatoes
1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese
2/3 cup of cornmeal
1/2 cup of milk
2 eggs beaten
3/4 teaspoon of salt
1/4 teaspoon of pepper

Bring corn, onions, peppers and water to a boil; reduce heat.  Cover and simmer 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender crisp.  DO NOT DRAIN.  Combine remaining ingredients in a large bowl, saving 1/4 cup of the cheddar cheese.  Add undrained vegetables and mix well.  Put in a 1 1/2 quart casserole dish.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 to 50  minutes.  Top with the remaining cheese.  Garnish with a tomato and a pepper slice if desired.

Lizzie's Corn Casserole got 5 out of 5 stars from the family.  And it smells amazing!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Highland Haven Farm

A few weeks ago I got a memo from Andy and the pasture range chickens that I just found.  So now I am sharing it with you.  Instead of the orders gong to Andy at Cedarmore Farm, the orders will go to Highland Haven Farm, which is owned by Lizzie's brother, Adam.  Highland Haven will also be in charge of the billing..  If you are interested in ordering please go the the Highland Haven website at, download and print their meat order form.  To get to the form go to the top left of the page and click on 'meats'.  Then fill out the form and mail it to
Adam Hershberger
Highland Haven Farm
12221 Turley Lane
Hillsboro, OH 451333. 

You will also need to get set up with their online ordering system.  To do this please email Andrea at or call her at 513-417-8777.  She will be more than happy to get you set up to order from Highland Haven Farm.  If you have any questions, please contact Andrea, as she knows how their system works much better than any of us.

There little peepers are actually Andy and Lizzie's broilers...meaning that these chicks won't be getting any names...if you get my drift!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Some Good Okra This Week

The report from the farm is that tall the onions have been harvested for this year.  They have all been put in mesh bags and hung in the shed to dry.  theses should keep until the end of the season.  We should be able to find them in our boxes for awhile.  I guess this must be a pretty big job because Andy says that he is glad that one job is over because it is the most challenging one.

There are extra canning tomatoes available as an extra product if you need some to can.  Email the farm at and Rue will make sure that Andy gets your order.  They will be delivered with your next box.  These are perfectly good tomatoes...they just don't look as good as the ones we get in our  boxes.  They may have a few nicks in them or an insect bite here or there.  They are .50 per pound.

Andy keeps educating us on the ways of Amish organic farming. The animals on the farm all have jobs.  Most of the year the cows and horses are out in the grass in the field. During the winter months Andy and Lizzie bring them into the barn and bed them down n the straw.  Before they put down a new layer of bedding they will usually sprinkle some corn in.  In the summer months when the cows and horses are out in the pasture the pigs them get some time in the barn.  The pigs will then root thru the straw looking for the corn.  The nice bedding had since been composted into rich compost.  This compost is then spread on the land that is in cover corps or in the fall after all the produce is gone.  This makes great fertilizer for the produce for the next year.

Recipe Of The Week: Sliced Fried Okra

Sliced Fried Okra

1 pound of okra, cut into 1/2 inch slices
1/2 cup of cornmeal
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 teaspoon of pepper
1/2 cup of vegetable oil

Cook okra in 1 cup of water and 1/2 teaspoon of salt for about 10 minutes.  Mix cornmeal, salt, and pepper.  Toss okra in cornmeal mixture until okra is completely covered.  Heat oil and cook and stir okra in oil until brown.

PS Lizzie uses butter instead of vegetable oil.

I fixed mine just a little different from Lizzie's recipe.  I sliced them into 1.2 slices then dipped them in egg.  I dug thru the cabinet and found some seasoned bread crumbs I use on fish.  Fried them up in an iron skillet with a little butter...yum!