Friday, June 11, 2010

Bailey's Buying Club - Ordering is now open for Friday, June 18, 2010

Click to log-in and order. Ordering closes at 8:00 pm on Sunday, June 13th.
Please be sure to read the wavier on our website when you log in. It reminds you that items placed your shopping cart are automatically saved (there is no 'checkout' button).

*** Mark Sunday, August 15th on you calendar for Bailey's Picnic Pot Luck in Waterloo Park! We have reserved the Servery by the Bandshell for our group! More details to come!

From Nina:
I used to love strawberries. They are a funky little fruit: no annoying seeds or pits, sexy red and they come in all shapes and sizes - and flavours!  If you've ever tasted different kinds of strawberries it's striking how different they can taste.  Some varieties, I've noticed, taste sweetest when they are orange-red but if you wait for them to get blood red, they taste "off" - kind of winey.  Other varieties don't taste really sweet until they are blood red.  When Mona was one year old she taught me that white strawberries taste pretty darn good. She kept picking them from the garden before they turned red. I was trying to tell her that it was not a good idea but then I tasted a white one and realized why she was ignoring me.  I don't know if all white strawberries taste nice (not GREAT) but the day-neutral variety that we grow are sweet. 

My first off-the-farm job when I was a kid was selling strawberries at the local patch. I was 11 and too young to work on my own. My grandma was 71 and she thought she was too old to work on her own but together we made the perfect team.  She'd drive us to the patch (I was too young to drive) at 5:30am when the summer mornings were chilly and wet.  The patch was next to a large nursing home and seniors townhouses so by 6am the patch was murmuring with white heads bobbing up and down as they picked their way up the rows.  It was a great first job. I had to do a lot of adding and multiplying, I got to practice talking to adults and looking them in the eyes, I learned how to be welcoming and helpful, and I could eat all the strawberries I wanted.  Soon I strawberries weren't quite so exciting or delicious. I still LIKE the little gems, I just don't love them. My new love is blueberries but don't get me started on those.

If you're wondering why strawberries cost what they do, go pick a few flats of strawberries and then think about how much you'd charge to sell those flats. Yep, back-aching work.  Picking strawberries also takes a long time because unless it is peak season you have to pick many many feet of rows searching for the red ones.  Pushing the leaves aside carefully to find the ones hiding just beyond your reach.  Strawberries also cost more than carrots because farmers have to take care of the plants ALL YEAR.  Strawberry plants produce for 2-4 years and need to be kept weed-free, watered, and safe from pests all that time!  It takes a lot of labour hours to mulch and weed and monitor those rows of plants all year.  Another reason that the strawberries are worth every penny is if they are organic, they are safer to eat - and harder to grow.  Strawberries are on the "dirty dozen" list of fruits and vegetables that are best to buy organic. Here's the list:

The Dirty Dozen (Buy These Foods Organic):
  1. Apples
  2. Cherries
  3. Grapes
  4. Nectarines
  5. Peaches
  6. Pears
  7. Raspberries
  8. Strawberries
  9. Bell Peppers
  10. Celery
  11. Potatoes
  12. Spinach

If you're wanting to freeze strawberries, get them while you can.  Frozen strawberries are a winter necessity at our house for smoothies. Miriam says that the strawberry season will be short - "bam bam" - she said.  She is not seeing many more flowers on the plants so that means no more fruits coming on.

Tuesday Pick Up Starts June 22
Next week you can choose if you want to pick up your order on Tuesday or Friday (or both!)  Some of you said that it was hard to pick up food on Fridays when you were heading out of town to camp or cottage. Next week you can pick up your food on Tuesday and if you don't eat it all you can take some along on Friday to the cottage.  Our Tuesday pick up is at St. Mark's Lutheran Church (825 King St. West, Kitchener) betwee Grand River Hospital and KCI. Bring your friends and come out to our new location. Parking is in the public lot across King Street (at Green) and after school hours (4 pm) you can park in the Kitchener Lot beside KCI. You can also take the bus to the church's doorstep. Entry is from the double brown doors to the Parking Lot off Green Street.

Meal Ideas
Let's see, what are we cooking these days?  I made roast and mashed potatoes for 20 on Saturday. The only thing that would've been easier than that is roast potatoes but the birthday boy loves his mashed potatoes and gravy.  Meals with a roast from the crockpot are so easy to make and I love using the leftover roast and juices in soups.  Matthew made a lovely vegetable soup with the almost secret ingredient of asparagus.  He slices the asparagus into thin little slices that the kids seem to never notice.  Mixed with celeriac, green onions, carrots, canned tomatoes, barley, thyme and leftover roast and gravy it is easy to not notice the asparagus.  We're going to put thin slices of asparagus into the freezer this year to throw into winter soups.  No need to blanch, just slice and throw into a bag and into the freezer. I took the soup to work and had it for lunch with a thick wedge of old cheddar. YUM.

I was hungry for rhubarb custard pie so I googled "rhubarb custard bars" and found a lovely simple recipe that was super easy. Press crust.  It was so tasty and easy I thought I'd try a savoury version with asparagus. Bad idea.  Had to give the chickens most of it.

Local Dairy Yogurt
If you've received Perth County yogurt that wasn't quite set or seemed unusual, let us know and you will get a free replacement.  Sometimes yogourt cultures are not 100% reliable in how they set. 

Waterloo Region Food System Roundtable

Did you know that Waterloo Region is seen as a leader in the local food movement? One of the reasons is that we have the Waterloo Region Food System Roundtable here.  Some of our members are also members of the roundtable - me too.  They'll have a booth at the pick up on Friday where you can check out their website and become a member too. It's a great way to connect with other Foodies.  See the events listed for events related to food system change.  There's one June 22 at KPL on GMO foods 6:30-8:30pm.

Little City Farm offers fresh loose-leaf teas!
Homestead Herbals loose-leaf teas are grown for you by Karin Kliewer and Greg Roberts at Little City Farm in Kitchener.  Karin has studied traditional herbalism, apprenticed on several herb farms, and is a certified Master Herbalist.  She loves working with herbs, creating natural healing products including teas, soaps and salves, for the eco-minded family. 

About the loose-leaf teas, Karin says: "These are quality teas, harvested at their peak, dried to perfection in small batches, and carefully packaged for you in an attractive reusable tin.  We enjoy drinking these blends all season long, as they make wonderful medicinal brews in the winter months, and refreshing iced teas in the summer.  It's difficult to choose a favourite - Greg likes the After Dinner tea, I drink large quantities of the Women's Blend, and our two-year old daughter Maya loves a cup of Sweet Dreams tea before bed.  However, if we had to, we'd probably say that right now our family favourite is the 5-Mint Medley.  Watch for it, as this season's new batch is coming soon to Bailey's Local Foods! Thank you for supporting our small enterprise and we hope you will enjoy the teas!  If you are interested in the events and workshops we hold at Little City Farm, or learning about the daily life on our urban homestead, please visit our website and blog."

Also, If you return the tins from tea, Karin will reuse them!

Little City Farm website:
Little City Farm blog:

Look for:
  • Zucchini from Paul Bowman
  • Small fresh onions (1-1.5 inches across) from Ervin and Lena Horst
  • Organic greenhouse tomatoes - seconds from Ervin and Lena Horst's son
  • Napa Cabbage and Bok Choi from Elvina Bauman

Yours in thankfulness for local food,
Bailey's Local Foods

P.S. We can use your fruit baskets and jars from preserves again if you return them.

Is this your first email from us?

You are receiving Nina's messages because you are a member of Bailey's Local Food Buying Club.

No comments: