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Volume 5 Number 2 January 15, 2013

EVENTS: Holistic Health and Wellness Fair, January 26

Mother Lode Harvest will have a booth at the 9th annual Holistic Health and Wellness Fair, on Saturday, January 26, sponsored by Motherlode Holistic Wellness Center of Jackson. The event will be from 11 am to 4 pm at the Amador Senior Center in Jackson, on New York Ranch Road. It is a free event, open to the public, with a myriad of vendors representing complementary health resources and healthy lifestyle choices. There will be speakers and demonstrations throughout the day, vendors in the main room, and a delicious $8.00 lunch provided by Gathering Grounds of Pine Grove.

MLH will be there to educate people about the benefits of eating locally produced and sustainably raised foods, with products available for sale.

For more information, go to, or call Michelle at 209-419-2503.

Hope to see you there!

FIELD NOTES: How Cold Is It?

I was talking to some of our producers yesterday, and they had some interesting and amusing anecdotes about dealing with the cold weather.

Kathy Randall, of Randall’s Corner in Fiddletown, said she is trying to sprout some wheat in her greenhouse for her chickens, but has to pour hot water on the seed trays every morning to un-freeze them.

Carolyn Boyd, of Butte Mountain Farm in Jackson, had the unusual experience of having to break off stalks of frozen chard to harvest it.

Alice Kaiser, of Casa de la Pradera in Fiddletown, had collected some eggs from her chickens and put them in the refrigerator in her packing shed, but when she retrieved them to use, they were frozen.

We all joked that MLH will soon be offering frozen vegetables as a new product line.

Stay warm!

Photos from left to right:
Winter gardens of Randall’s Corner, Butte Mountain Farm, and Casa de la Pradera
Fruit trees photo: Boggs’ Market Garden, Pine Grove

Randall's Corner Winter Garden
Butternut squash for dessert!

Butternut Squash Glazed Tart

Contributed by Grace Parisi to Food and Wine

One 1-pound neck of butternut squash—peeled, halved lengthwise and sliced 1/4 inch thick

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

2 tablespoons sugar

8 ounces all-butter puff pastry, chilled

4 ounces cream cheese, softened

1/8 teaspoon cinnamon

2 tablespoons apricot preserves, melted

2 tablespoons chopped toasted pecans

Preheat the oven to 375°. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and butter the paper. Brush the squash with the melted butter and sprinkle with 1 1/2 tablespoons of the sugar. Roast for about 45 minutes, flipping the squash slices halfway through, or until softened. Let cool.

Meanwhile, roll out the pastry to a 14-by-6-inch rectangle and transfer it to a parchment paper–lined baking sheet. Prick the pastry all over with a fork and refrigerate until firm, about 5 minutes. Top with another sheet of parchment paper and a flat cookie sheet and bake for about 30 minutes, until the pastry is lightly golden on the bottom but not set. Remove the top cookie sheet and parchment and bake for 10 minutes longer, until the pastry is golden and crisp. Let cool.

Blend the cream cheese with the cinnamon and the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of sugar and spread it on the pastry. Arrange the squash slices on top. Brush with the apricot preserves and sprinkle with pecans. Cut into slices and serve.

Butternut squash for breakfast!

Butternut Squash and Kale Strata with Multigrain Bread

Contributed by Zoe Nathan to Food and Wine

2 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for greasing

2 pounds butternut squash—peeled, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch dice

1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

2 medium onions, thinly sliced, plus 1/2 small onion, finely chopped

3/4 pound kale or other cooking green, ribs discarded and leaves chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

Pinch of crushed red pepper

2 teaspoons finely chopped thyme

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

2 1/2 cups milk

1 cup heavy cream

1/2 cup crème fraîche

1 teaspoon sugar

8 large eggs

One 3/4-pound multigrain baguette, cut into 1-inch pieces

1/3 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Preheat the oven to 425° and butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the squash with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake for about 25 minutes, tossing once, until the squash is just tender. Reduce the oven temperature to 325°.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil. Add the sliced onions, season with salt and cook over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 25 minutes. Scrape the onions into a bowl.

In the same skillet, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil until shimmering. Add the kale, garlic, crushed red pepper and 1 teaspoon of the thyme and season with salt. Cook over moderately high heat, tossing, until the kale is wilted and just tender, about 5 minutes. Scrape the kale into the bowl with the cooked onions.

In a medium saucepan, melt the 2 1/2 tablespoons of butter. Add the chopped onion and the remaining 1 teaspoon of thyme and cook over moderately low heat, stirring, until softened, 5 minutes. Add the flour and cook over moderate heat, whisking constantly, until a light golden paste forms, 3 minutes. Whisk in 1 cup of the milk and cook, whisking, until very thick and no floury taste remains, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and whisk in the cream, crème fraîche, sugar, 2 teaspoons of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of pepper and the remaining 1 1/2 cups of milk. Let the béchamel cool.

Beat the eggs into the cooled béchamel in the saucepan. Pour into a bowl, add the bread and the vegetables and mix well. Pour the strata mixture into the prepared baking dish and let stand for 30 minutes, pressing down the bread occasionally.

Bake the strata for 55 minutes to 1 hour, until almost set. Increase the oven temperature to 475°. Sprinkle the Parmigiano on the strata and bake for about 10 minutes more, until the top is lightly browned. Let the strata stand for 15 minutes before serving.

Make Ahead The recipe can be prepared through Step 5 and refrigerated overnight.

Carolyn's Winter Garden
This recipe calls for Fuyu persimmons, which are the firm variety. They might still be available locally, or substitute chopped apples.

Roasted Root-Vegetable Salad with Persimmons

Contributed by Tom Fundaro to Food and Wine

1 1/2 pounds rutabagas, peeled and cut into 1-inch dice

1 1/2 pounds parsnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch dice

1 1/2 pounds turnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch dice

3 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch dice

1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

Salt and freshly ground pepper

2 medium shallots, thinly sliced

5 tablespoons sweet white wine

3 tablespoons white wine vinegar

1 1/2 teaspoons chopped thyme

3 Fuyu persimmons, cut into 1-inch dice

One 3-ounce head of frisée, torn, or 1 small head of lettuce

2 Belgian endives, cored and sliced crosswise 1/2 inch thick, or ¼ pound of arugula

1/2 cup pomegranate seeds

Preheat the oven to 375°. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the rutabagas, parsnips, turnips and carrots with 3 tablespoons of the olive oil. Spread in an even layer and season with salt and pepper. Bake for about 1 hour, stirring occasionally, or until just tender. Let cool.

In a small skillet, heat the remaining 6 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the shallots and cook over moderate heat until starting to brown, 6 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool. Stir in the wine, vinegar and thyme. Season with salt and pepper.

Add the roasted vegetables, persimmons, and salad greens to the dressing and toss well. Transfer to a platter, sprinkle with the pomegranate seeds and serve.

Shaved Rutabagas with Butter and Black Pepper

Contributed by Jimmy Bradley to Food and Wine

1 stick unsalted butter

1 1/2-pound rutabagas (yellow turnips)—quartered, peeled and shaved a scant 1/8 inch thick

Salt and freshly ground pepper

In a very large skillet, melt the butter. Add the rutabagas, season with salt and pepper and cook over moderately high heat, tossing, until tender and browned in spots, 10 minutes. Season with pepper, toss and serve.

Crab season has just opened in Northern California. If you get some, you might want to enjoy it with this unusual sauce.

Steamed Crab With Gewürztraminer Sauce

Contributed by Marcia Kiesel to Food and Wine

1 cup Gewürztraminer wine

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 1/2 pounds crab legs, cut crosswise between the joints

2 tablespoons minced chives

1/4 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

1 tablespoon minced spearmint

In a saucepan, boil the Gewürztraminer over moderately high heat until reduced by half, about 10 minutes. Whisk in the butter and remove from the heat.

Using kitchen shears, cut along the length of the crab leg shells. Arrange the legs in a single layer in a large steamer basket or bamboo steamer; steam until heated through, about 4 minutes. Transfer the crab legs to a platter.

Gently rewarm the sauce over low heat and stir in the chives, lemon zest and spearmint. Pour the sauce into warmed dipping bowls and serve at once with the crab.

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Single Box

Meyer Lemons – Abbondanza

Rutabaga – Butte Mountain Farm

Kale, Chard, Sorrel or Mizuna – Butte Mountain Farm or Casa de la Pradera

2- Butternut – Tyson Hill Farm

Navel Orange – Tyson Hill Farm

2 lb mixed Fresh Fruit – Tyson Hill Farm

Family Box

Meyer Lemons – Abbondanza

Braising Greens – Casa de la Pradera

Butternut – Tyson Hill Farm

Navel Orange – Tyson Hill Farm

2 lb mixed Fresh Fruit – Tyson Hill Farm

Hachiya Persimmons – Tin Bird Garden

Spearmint – Butte Mountain Farm

Alice's Winter Garden
Shopping at
MotherLode Harvest has local food and farm products available to order at
Orders received during that time can be picked up on Tuesdays between 10:30 am and noon, or 4:30 to 6:00 pm, at 1235 Jackson Gate Road in Jackson, behind Teresa’s Restaurant. Payment may be made at pickup by cash or check made out to MotherLode Harvest.

New customers will need to register by using the “join” button on the website before they can shop. If you have any questions or problems with using the website, please contact our tech leader, Jo Ann, at joannd, or 304-7654.

MLH has enacted our new membership policies. Customers will need to sign a customer agreement and pay membership dues before they are able to order subscriptions or order from the website. Customer members will be able to increase their participation in MLH. Sign up today!

Boggs' Market Garden Fruit Trees

Other Local Agriculture News:

Backyard Fruit Trees: Winter Pruning Workshop

Timed pruning offers a simple and revolutionary approach to fruit tree care: winter prune for shape and summer prune to keep trees small and easy. For first-time planters and people in need of a pruning refresher, this hands-on class covers the benefits of using pruning to keep fruit trees small, the basic mechanics of pruning, seasonal routines, and general maintenance. Attendees leave the workshop confident in their new pruning skills and relieved to discover they don’t need a degree in agriculture to manage a fruit tree.

Instructor Ann Ralph managed the fruit tree department at Berkeley Horticultural Nursery for ten years. Her pruning book, The Little Fruit Tree, will be available from Storey Publishing in 2014.

January 26, 2013

10:30 am – 12:30 pm


Ridge Road Nursery

18815 Ridge Road

Pine Grove CA 95665

(209) 296-7210

For more info: gardencenter

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Our mailing address is: P.O. Box 534 Amador City, CA 95601
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