Meet our Farmer Hero: Calvin Jechow, 6J Ranch
My first thought when driving out to 6J Ranch was, “How in the world does Calvin get those duck eggs out of here in one piece?” The gravel road is rugged (in my little Toyota, at least) but the scenery is idyllic. Thorndale, TX is covered in grassy plains perfect for livestock grazing. It was here that Calvin Jechow’s Grandfather bought this 187-acre plot in 1934. Five years later Calvin was born on site, and has been involved with the business ever since.
In 2008 Calvin ventured into the poultry side of farming, supplying Greenling with duck eggs. You’d think that they had already hatched the way they are flying off the shelf! Word has spread that duck eggs are especially great for baking. Their higher protein content creates additional loft. According to Calvin, “You don’t hardly see a cake sink with duck eggs.”
It is clear in a matter of moments after visiting with Calvin why he has made this life for himself. “I love my animals,” he says. This sentiment shines through his entire operation. The birds are well cared for, averaging more than 4 sq feet of room per bird, which might as well be a five-star hotel room compared to factory farm conditions. They are free to roam around their coop with ease and always have fresh grass under their feet. Calvin moves the pens weekly, which keeps their living situation clean and fertilizes his land for future cattle grazing. It is heart-warming to see how well nature can take care of itself if you just let it.
Stop by the Cedar Park Farmers Market one Saturday morning, and say hello to Calvin and his family.
- Joel Johnson, Curry Courier
She’s been cooking for her 4 brothers and sisters since she was 10 years old and has some truly magical dishes she creates.
Most of the time the only people to experience this magic are the ones around the table, but every now and then she finds time between running her own business and raising our kiddo, Daxton, to post her extra-special recipes to her blossoming blog. One of her recent creations: Coconut Creamed Chard with Ginger
This Week's Box Contents & Local Items
Local cucumbers will be making an appearance very soon! Local carrots are making a comeback soon too- many got destroyed by the cold weather, sadly.
Here's what will be available from local farms on our website this week (the best selection of local produce in the state - guaranteed). Items with a (*) are only available in the Local Box:
In Local Boxes ($34.99) this week (Mar 21-25):
- Shallots - Acadian Family Farms
- Tomatoes - Gundermann
- Citrus - G&S Groves
- Kale - Texas Natural
- Spinach - Acadian Family Farms
- Avocados - G&S Groves
- Cilantro - Naegelin
- Red Radish - Naegelin
- Carrots - Orange Blossom
- Herb OR Potatoes - Pure Luck OR Gundermann
Suggested recipes for all items will be included with the Local Box
Last Week's (Mar 14-18) Local Box Video:
In Farmstead Boxes this week:
- Queso Fresco - My Father's Farm
- Flavored Tortillas - Margarita's
- Chutney Salsa - Kala's Kuisine
Fresh, Prepared Meal Selection for this week:
Dish #1 -Chicken Tortilla Soup (1 pint - serves 1 for lunch) Every culture has their own 'chicken soup for the soul' recipe. This is one of our favorites. Our handmade chicken stock thickened with El Milagro corn tortillas is the base for tender chunks of natural, Dewberry Hills Farm chicken, tomatoes and smokey chipotle peppers. A spicy cure for anything that ails you.
Ingredients: chicken stock, chicken,tomato, onion, garlic, corn tortilla, canola oil, oregano, chipotle, dried chiles, herbs, salt, pepper
Dish #2 -Sprouted Lentil Salad (1 pint) -One of our favorite discoveries in our current raw food adventures. Delicious, absurdly nutritious sprouted lentils are tossed with fresh tomatoes, black beans, sweet red bell peppers & chopped arugula then dressed in a savory red wine vinaigrette with fresh herbs for a surprisingly good (we were quite surprised just how good) side salad. Also, try it for lunch, or as a snack with some toasted pita or chips.
Ingredients: organic green lentils, organic black beans, shallot, garlic, scallion, red bell peppers, organic tomatoes, organic arugula, red wine vinegar, olive oil, dijon mustard, honey ,herbs, spices, salt, pepper
Produce from Local Farms
- Basil, Live - BellaVerdi
- Cabbage, Green – Gundermann, Naegelin
- Herbs - Pure Luck
- Greens, Collard -Naegelin, Gundermann
- Greens, Kale – Texas Natural
- Spring onions – Naegelin
- Carrot with tops - Orange Blossom
- Cilantro - Naegelin
- Fennel - Fruitful Farm
- Lettuce, Bibb - Bella Verdi
- Lettuce, Salad Mixes - Austin Organics
- Lettuce, Green Leaf - Farm Patch
- Lettuce, Red Leaf - Farm Patch
- Lettuce, Romaine - Fruitful Farm
- Leeks - Gundermann
Produce from Local Farms
- Microgreens – Bella Verdi
- Mushroom, Crimini - Kitchen Pride
- Mushroom, Port Caps - Kitchen Pride
- Mushroom, Shitake - Kitchen Pride
- Mushroom, White – Kitchen Pride
- Pea Shoots - Bluebonnet
- Red Radish - Naegelin
- Easter Egg Radish - Animal Farm
- Spinach – Naegelin
- Baby Spinach - Green Gate
- Sprouts – All Groovy Greens
- Tomatoes - My Father's Farm, Gundermann
- Watercress - Bluebonnet
- Avocado - G&S Grove
- Grapefruit - G&S Grove
- Navel Oranges - G&S Grove
Events & Local Food Happenings Around Town
A Passion for Plants: East Austin Garden Fair
-Saturday, March 19, 10:00am-1:00pm
-New Covenant Fellowship of Austin Church, 1507 Wilshire Blvd., 78722 [Austin]
This free public gardening event will feature hands-on demonstrations of how to dig a garden bed, harvest rain water, grow fruits and vegetables organically, start plants from cuttings and seeds, and how to cut back on chemicals that harm our environment and ourselves.
Come for the free advice from our on-site experts to answer all of your gardening questions, for tips on living healthier and happier, and for fun educational activities for kids to get them out in nature in your own back yard!
For more information, call the Texas AgriLife Extension Service at 854-9600.
Green Gate Farms Plant Sale
-Saturday, March 26 10am-1pm
-Green Gate Farm, 8310 Canoga Ave., 78724(Austin)
Please join us March 26th for our biannual plant sale to kick off the Spring season. Come stock up on organic plants for your spring garden. You can look forward to rare heirloom vegetables, herbs and flowers.
Green Living Project
-Thursday, March 24 6pm-9pm
-501 Studios, 501 N IH-35- Corner of East 5th and Brushy St., 78702 (Austin)
Support Sustainable Food Center at Green Living Project's exciting Premiere Event at 501 Studios! This inspiring multimedia event will showcase global sustainability initiatives, provide live music, complimentary food, beer & beverages, & a chance to win awesome raffle prizes! Free Saint Arnold beer 6-7! Hear from Austin's Chief Sustainability Officer, Lucia Athens, followed by a talk by SFC, the evening's local spotlight organization.
Parmesan Carrot Risotto
From Martha Stewart
- 2 cans (14.5 ounces each) reduced sodium chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 medium red onion, finely chopped
- 6 medium carrots, grated
- Course salt and ground pepper
- 1 1/4 cups long grain white rice
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
In a saucepan, bring broth and 2 cups water to a bare simmer over medium.
In a large saucepan, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium. Add onion and carrots; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in rice. Add wine; cook, stirring, until absorbed, 1 to 2 minutes.
Add 2 cups hot broth; simmer over medium-low, stirring frequently, until mostly absorbed, 10 to 12 minutes. Continue to add broth, 1 cup at a time, stirring occasionally, until absorbed before adding more. Cook until rice is creamy and just tender, about 20 minutes (you may not need all the broth).
Remove risotto from heat. Stir in Parmesan and 1 tablespoon butter, and season with salt and pepper.
For More Recipes Check Out:
Eating Out of the Local Box - Menus designed specifically for the local box and ideas on what to do with the wonderful bounty
Vegan Greenling - More recipes for the local box, but all Vegan!
Greenling Facebook - All sorts of recipes and ideas get posted here
Mylie's Kitchen - Real Food. Good for you and the planet.
Psst....Thanks For Telling Your Friends
Remember you can always share the love of Greenling and get free food for doing it. Just download this coupon to give to others and type in your personalized coupon code - first 3 letters of your first and last name and the first 3 numbers of your address (add zeros if you just have 1 or 2 numbers) - where it says 'Go with Greenling and save!', print it and hand it out to your friends and co-workers. You get 10% off your next order after they've joined. They get 10% off, too, by entering your coupon code when they order.
Did Whole Foods sell out to Monsanto?
Since our partnership with Whole Foods Market we’ve been contacted by customers concerned about an article that has been circulating claiming WF is supporting Monsanto and Genetically Engineered foods. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Here’s the original article. The truth is that the Organic Trade Association (Whole Foods is just a high-profile member, not the primary leadership) was given the choice of rescinding opposition in exchange for regulation or being steamrolled anyway (USDA was threatening to approve GMO alfalfa anyway, without regulation). The OTA, not Whole Foods, said ‘Ok, if our only choice is regulation or no regulation we choose regulation.’ Well, the USDA approved it without regulation. They made Organic leadership look bad and didn’t give them any concessions. It’s the USDA we should be mad at, not Whole Foods or Organic Valley or Stonyfield. And we should be mad at the Organic Consumers Association for creating this damaging propaganda. Couple of good articles on the subject:
The GMO Battle: Does Whole Foods Support Monsanto’s Genetically Engineered Alfalfa?
USDA Disappoints: No Regulations on GE Alfalfa