CSA Week #7

Farming grows community

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This week’s blog post is authored by one of our CSA members, Medwyn McConachy and our second youngest farmer, Inara Turner at Amara Farm!

Why I am a CSA member…

By Medwyn McConachy

622333_3818034446998_55430521_oOne of the hidden secrets I discovered on moving to the Comox Valley is the amazing agricultural abundance here.  Last year, when Ripple Farm started a CSA box program, I was excited to become an early member. It’s great to know how much farmers’ markets have grown over the last ten years, but for me buying a CSA share takes supporting local farmers a step further and I feel so privileged to have this opportunity to support those who are working for sustainable local organic agriculture. This year with Moss and Arzeena teaming up to create Merville Organics, I already see my investment paying off, my box now has produce from two farms, I see Merville Organics at both farmers’ markets, in a small way I feel part of growing the local organic agriculture movement here.

I became passionate about local food about ten years ago when I realized that shopping at farmers’ markets was not only better for me and for the planet, but it was a way of investing in the health of the community I live in. Later I discovered that CSA shares allowed me to become a non-farming member of the farming community. Wow what a concept! First, I really know in detail what goes into growing my food; and second, I have a larger stake in the vitality of my local farming community. My farming friends in the Fraser Valley planted this seed in me, and now my farmer friends in the Comox Valley are nurturing it. I love being a CSA member, being part of the farm, knowing that by sharing the risks and benefits of farming in this way, I am a part of the essential network of community and local production that does so much to keep our valley healthy and vibrant. This is the way of the future.

My vision is to have locally supplied food sufficient for all our needs when the costs of imported food become prohibitive. Thanks Moss and Arzeena, I love you and what you do.


Garlic Harvesting Video

By Inara Turner

What’s in the box?

Please note that Friday’s box may be slightly different! Check back on Friday for details.

All Shares:

  • Potatoes
  • Onions / green onions
  • Summer squash
  • Korean Red garlic
  • Greens (kale or chard)
  • Salad greens

Full Shares get:

  • Extra onions, potatoes and salad
  • Peas, green beans or broccolini


Moss’ favourite new summer potato salad

You’ll need:

  • 1.5lbs potatoes
  • 1/4 cup mayonaise (see below for the homemade mayonaise recipe!)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • fresh herbs of your choice (ie. dill, parsely, oregano)
  • 1/4 cup sauerkraut
  • 2 TBSP grainy dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup pickles (any kind of veggie, preferably lacto-fermented pickles!)
  • thinly sliced onion to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste

Chop potatoes into bite size chunks and boil until almost cooked. Drain and rinse. Chill in the fridge for an hour, or if you’re in a hurry (like I usually am!) soak them in several changes of cold water.

While the potatoes are chilling out, mix mayo, pickles, kraut, garlic, mustard and herbs in a bowl. Add chilled spuds. Mix. Enjoy!

Homemade Mayo

So, you might notice when it’s my turn for recipes, I don’t include very detailed instructions. I like to play it by ear in the kitchen, and mistakes are always part of the process! Mayonaise is made by feel, so don’t be discouraged if your first batch fails!

In a blender or food processor place:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 TBSP lemon juice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 TBSP honey
  • 1 TBSP mustard (I like the grainy kind)

Whiz on high speed. Switch to the lowest speed, and while running, slowly drizzle sunflower or grapeseed oil into the blender. You will need to add a cup or two before it starts to “chug.” When it makes a coughing spluttering sound, the mayo is starting to emulsify. Do not overblend! Stop to test the mix. If it is very thick, you’re done. If it’s still thin, you might want to add and slowly, slowly blend a bit more oil in. You can even beat it in by hand. If it’s curdled, it’s overmixed and you need to try again!

Have fun!