Sunday, June 26, 2011

Beet Recipes For this Week

Apple Beet Slaw
by Chef Christopher Ludwick
1 lb beets julienned
1/2 lb apples jullienned
1/4 lb fennel shaved
salt and pepper to taste
2 T poppy seed dressing

Place all ingredients in bowl and toss with dressing. Season as needed.
 Allow slaw to marinate for 5 minutes before serving.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Additional Recipes For The Week

Rosemary Roasted Purple Potatoes

5-6 medium-sized purple or other potatoes
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 1/2 teaspoons dried rosemary, crushed
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Scrub the potatoes well. Dry and quarter them.
  3. Place potatoes in baking pan to form a single layer.
  4. Drizzle olive oil over potatoes, sprinkle with crushed garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper. Toss potatoes to coat with oil and spices.
  5. Cover pan with foil and slide into oven.
  6. Bake potatoes for 15 minutes.
  7. Slide pan from oven and remove foil. Using a spatula, turn potatoes over.
  8. Return pan to oven without foil and roast potatoes another 15 minutes.
  9. Slide potatoes from oven, turn them one more time and continue roasting another 10-15 minutes. Remove from oven and serve immediately.

Honeydew Mimosas
Honeydew Mimosas Recipe
  • 1/2 medium honeydew melon (about 4 cups), cubed
  • 1 cup crushed ice
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • (750 ml) bottle sparkling wine, chilled
  • Garnishes: lime wedges
  • Directions:
  • Combine first 3 ingredients in a blender. Process until smooth. Pour mixture into a large pitcher; add sparkling wine. Pour into glasses. Garnish, if desired.

Baked Squash With Basil
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
    1 onion, diced
    3 cloves garlic, minced
    10 basil leaves, thinly sliced
    2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
    8 medium squash, cut into 1/4 inch rounds
    2/3 cup freshly grated parmesan

1. Preheat the oven to 375F and put the rack in the middle position. Grease a baking dish with a little oil and set aside. 

2. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. When it's hot and shimmering, stir in the onion and season with a light sprinkling of salt and pepper. Cook until the onion's soft but not browned, 4-6 minutes. 

3. Add the garlic, basil, and thyme, stir to combine and sauté until the garlic becomes fragrant, 1 minute or so. Toss in the squash and cook 2 minutes.

4. Pour the vegetables into the baking dish and spread them out into an even layer. Bake for 20 minutes or until the squash soften. Sprinkle with the parmesan, then bake another 20 minutes until the cheese is melted and browned.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Additional Recipes For The Week

Skillet Squash and Potatoes


  • 1 small potato, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil
  • 1 small zucchini or yellow summer squash, sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 dash paprika
(you can also throw in any leftover green beans!)

In a covered skillet over medium-low heat, cook potato and onion in oil for 12 minutes. Add squash; cook, uncovered, for 8-10 minutes or until the vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally. Season with salt, pepper and paprika.

Chickpeas with Baby Spinach


1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon cumin
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 (15-oz.) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 cup chicken or vegetable stock, or water
Cayenne to taste
6-oz  baby spinach

1. Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat and add the onion. Cook, stirring, until tender, about five minutes. Add the garlic, cumin, tomato paste and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring for one to two minutes, until fragrant and the tomato paste has turned a darker color. Add the chickpeas, the stock or water, and the cayenne, and bring to a simmer. Cover, reduce the heat, and simmer 10 minutes.
2. Stir in the spinach, a handful at a time, stirring until each addition of spinach wilts. Add salt to taste and simmer uncovered, stirring often, for five minutes. Add lots of freshly ground pepper, taste and adjust salt and cayenne, and serve.
You can serve it on its own, with couscous or pasta, or over a thick slice of toasted bread rubbed with garlic.

Grilled Sweet Potatoes

4 medium sweet potatoes
1/2 cup melted butter
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon


Cup sweet potatoes into 3/4 inch slices. Bring 3 quarts of water to a boil and add potatoes. Boil until potatoes are just starting to soften. Cool and peal. Combine butter, brown sugar and cinnamon, brush over potatoes. Place Potato slices on preheated grill over a medium low heat and cook for about 10 to 15 minutes, turning once. When the sweet potatoes as soft through the middle and browned on the surface they are ready.

Farm Dinner Number 4!

Doubletree Hotel Sonoma Wine Country, CA - Bacchus

On June 3rd we had our 4th Farm Dinner at Bacchus Restaurant in Rohnert Park.  The restaurant is part of the Doubletree by Hilton.  The dinner fell during the late season rainstorms we had so we were inside for the evening.  The night started out with wine tasting and hors d'oeuvres that included various cheeses two kinds of meatballs and fresh organic cherries.  Around 7:00 we moved into the beautiful Bacchus dining room.  The first course was a delicious spinach salad with walnuts, beets, and cheese.  Next was the main course of veal from Rossotti Ranch on top of gnocchi.  Gnocchi are small, soft dumplings made from flour and potatoes; they were amazing! Accompanying the main course were sautéed 

veggies (from our farm of course!) Our veggies are always delicious but that night they were phenomenal.  For dessert there was cinnamon gelato and cherry clafoutis.  Clafoutis is a French dish in which cherries are arranged in a buttered pan and then covered in a flan-like batter.  It was nice to see the fresh cherries from earlier make another appearance and to two desserts complimented each other wonderfully.  Overall it was a fabulous evening and we can’t wait until the next one!

Details for the next Farm Dinner:
Date: July 1, 2011
Time:  6:30-8:30 pm
Lagunitis Brewery will be there so we will have beer AND wine tasting!
Reservations: 707-586-4679
Hope to see you all there!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Nutrition Fact For the Week: Nectarines

Summer Peaches

        Nectarines are peaches small, hairless cousins.  They are related to plums as well.  All three are delicious fruits that are only around locally in the summertime.  So make sure to get your fill over the next few months!      
      Nectarines are a bit sweeter than peaches but only contain 50 calories per fruit, so they’re a great snack it youre looking for a sweet treat! They are also really good for you.  One nectarine can give you up to 20% of your daily Vitamin A.  Vitamin A benefits the body in many ways.  One of which is improving your bodies immune response which helps prevent infections and fight them as well.  It also helps keep your eyes healthy and your vision clear.  Vitamin A  helps skin retain moisture which keeps it soft and supple.  Along with keeping your skin healthy overall, this vitamin has also been shown to be great at eliminating wrinkles, age spots and fine lines.  It also helps prevent acne!

Nectarine Nutrition Click Here To Enlarge

That is already quite a few heath benefits but nectarines have a few other suprises as well.  Nectarines are one of the few fruits that contain protein.  One small fruit contains around 1.5 grams of protein, which is great to balance out the sugars present.  The beautifully colored skin of the nectarine has benefits as well.  It is packed with bioflavnoids which are antioxidants found in plant pigments that help your bobdy fight cancer as well as other diseases.  One word of warning about nectarines, their pits contain a chemical that is converted to cyanide in the stomach! If oyu swallow small pieces its fine, but its best to avoid eating the pits as it could result in cyanide poisoning.  These pretty little fruits are a wonderful and healthy summer treat so enjoy them while you can!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Nutrition Fact For The Week: Cucumber

     Cucumbers can do wonders for the outside of your body.  From getting rid of under eye bags to tightening up your skin.  But they can also be beneficial to the inside of your body! Even though fresh cucumbers are composed of mostly water they still have a lot of nutrition packed into them.  The inside of cucumbers is a very good source of vitamins A, C, and folic acid. The hard skin is rich in fiber and minerals including magnesium, silica, molybdenum, and potassium.  Most people know you need a diet rich in vitamins and minerals, but usually the vitamins are talked about more.

            Silica is a mineral many people have not heard of let alone know what it does for the body.  It is necessary for many bodily functions and metabolic reactions.  It is important in the development of the skeletal system.  Without it, there are bone deformities.  If you break or fracture a bone silica helps deposit minerals into the bone and speed up healing.  Silica also helps the body process phosphorous. Phosphorous is important in making bones, repairing tissue and filtering waste.    This nifty mineral helps your outsides too.  Silica is one of the primary components of collagen, the connective tissues for your skin. It may help to retain moisture and keep you looking younger.  It is a major element in hair and nails. If you have enough silica in your body, you have the building blocks for strong, healthy nails and hair.

Another good thing about cucumbers is that they can be transformed into another yummy food…pickles! They do lose some of their nutrients in the pickling process, however.  Also they sometimes have sugar and other additives that can add calories.  Fresh, raw cucumbers with their skin are best.  So to keep your body happy, inside and out, grab some cucumbers :)

Monday, June 6, 2011

Additional Recipes for The Week

Swiss Chard Pesto Pasta
2 large garlic cloves
2 cups packed chopped Swiss chard leaves
1/2 cup walnuts
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup parsley leaves
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
6 oz cooked angel hair pasta

1. Pulse garlic in food processor to chop
2. Add chard, walnuts, Parmesan, and parsley; whirl until finely chopped
3. Add oil, salt, and pepper and process until smooth
4. Serve with pasta

Sautéed Green Beans and Potatoes with Rosemary and Lemon Zest
Sautéed Green Beans and Potatoes with Rosemary and Lemon Zest1 pound potatoes
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 1/2 tablespoons finely-chopped rosemary
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes
1 pound green beans, trimmed
2 teaspoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice


In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, add potatoes with water. Bring just to boil; reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook until tender, approximately 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from heat; drain and let cool. When potatoes are cool enough to handle, quarter potatoes lengthwise. Set aside.
In large frying pan, heat olive oil; add garlic and let sizzle for 30 seconds. Add rosemary, lemon zest, and chili flakes; let sizzle until fragrant. Add cooked potatoes and green beans; sauté until vegetables are hot and coated with seasonings. Sprinkle with lemon juice and season with salt.
Serve warm.

Cantaloupe-Peach Smoothie
3/4 cup orange juice
1 cup cantaloupe chunks
1 cup sliced peaches
1/2 cup vanilla yogurt
1-2 tablespoons lemon juice (optional)

1. Combine the orange juice, cantaloupe, peaches, and yogurt in a blender and purée to the desired consistency.
2. Add lemon juice to taste and serve cold.
Tip: If you freeze some of your smoothie ingredients , or add some ice cubes, you can get a thicker, frothier drink.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

New Website!

Check out our NEW Valley End Farms website!  We are continuing to work on the website and fix the bugs, so be sure to check back each week for new features!

Nutrition Fact For The Week: Apples

  “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” We all heard this saying growing up but is it accurate? Some might say yes.  Apples are a good source of Vitamin C.  Vitamin C is believed to help make your immune system strong.  A strong and healthy immune system can better fight off illness and infections and keep your body healthy. Vitamin C also helps heal wounds and form scar tissues. 

Apples have other health benefits as well.  Recent studies have shown that they can help regulate blood sugar.  Some of the nutrients in apples have been shown to affect how carbohydrates are digested and absorbed into the body.  Basically they slow down carbohydrate digestion which prevents your blood sugar from spiking. When blood sugar spikes people experience a “sugar rush” and then a crash, eating an apple is a delicious way to avoid that cycle. 

Apples can be eaten in many forms; juice, sauce, pies, or dipped in caramel. (Yum!)  To get the most nutrients from this crispy fruit though your best bet is to eat it whole and raw.  The skin on apples, whether red, green, or yellow, is packed with fiber which has numerous health benefits, and helps you feel full longer.  If you’re looking for a sweet snack to munch of this summer grab an apple! Your body will thank you.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Additional Recipes For The Week

 Roasted Garlic-Fava Bean Sauce
 8 cups chicken stock
1 garlic head roasted, cloves squeezed into a bowl
2 tablespoons cold butter cut into tablespoons
1 tablespoons freshly-squeezed lemon juice
Salt to taste
Freshly-ground black pepper to taste
½ to 1 cup cooked fava beans

1. Place stock and roasted garlic in a medium saucepan and reduce to 3 cups. Strain into a clean saucepan and bring to a simmer. 
2. Whisk in the butter and lemon juice and season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the fava beans (from 1/2 to 1 cup, depending on desired consistency) and cook for 1 minute. 
3. Serve with roasted chicken or other meat, or over rice or polenta

 Green Chard and Tomato Frittata
1 lb green chard
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons olive oil
6 egg whites
2 whole eggs
3 tablespoons chopped basil
¼ teaspoon salt (more to taste)
¼ teaspoon pepper (more to taste)
1 medium tomato, sliced
Grated cheese (optional)

1. Chop the chard. In a skillet, sauté the garlic and onions in 1 tablespoon of the oil.
2. Add the chard, cover and lower the heat and cook for 10 minutes
3. Lower the heat and cook for 10 minutes.
4.  Remove from heat and drain if juicy. 
5.  In a large bowl, beat the eggs, salt and pepper until blended. Stir in the chard. 
6. Coat the bottom of a skillet with the remaining oil and return to medium heat. 
7.When hot, pour egg mixture and arrange tomato slices on top. 
8. Cover and cook until the edges are firm and the bottom is golden and beginning to brown. Turn frittata    
    over and cook for about 5 more minute until eggs are cooked.  
9. Top with grated cheese if desired  
10. Serve immediately or at room temperature.

 Delicious Summer Salad
 head of romaine lettuce
1 apple
1 c kalamata olives (or any olives you like)
1 c cherry tomatoes
1/2 c finely chopped red onions

1. Chop up head of romaine and throw in salad bowl.
2. Dump cherry tomatoes on top of lettuce.
3. Cut up apple into chunks and place in bowl.
4. Take chopped red onion and add to salad.
5. Add olives
6. Toss and enjoy with the dressing of your choice!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Nutrition Fact For The Week: Broccoli

Fresh Broccoli and ranch is a perfect summer snack.   If raw broccoli isn’t your thing you can also steam it, boil it, or add it is stir fry.  No matter how you eat it you’ll be getting tons of nutrients and health benefits.

Broccoli can provide you with cholesterol-lowering benefits if you will cook it by steaming. Raw broccoli still has cholesterol-lowering ability—just not as much.  Broccoli also has been shown to have great anti-inflammatory benefits and is loaded with antioxidants.  Antioxidants protect the body from damage caused by harmful molecules called free radicals. Many experts believe this damage is a factor in cancer and many other conditions, so it’s a good idea to get as many as you can in your diet.

Broccoli has also been shown to help the body in many other ways form eye health to preventing heart disease.  It’s also a good source of calcium and Vitamin K, both of which promote healthy bones.  So eat up! Your whole body will thank you.

Additional Recipes For The Week

Broccoli with Cilantro and Garlic Sauce
1 pound broccoli florets
1/3 cup cilantro or parsley, chopped
2 tablespoons virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced

Place broccoli in a steamer basket over boiling water. Cover saucepan and steam 6 to 8 minutes, or until tender. Transfer broccoli to a serving bowl. 
Combine remaining ingredients in a small nonstick skillet over medium heat. Stir until hot. Pour sauce over 

broccoli and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Lime Dressed Fruit Salad
1c Blueberries
2 med. Cantaloupe melons
2c Sliced strawberries
1/4c Water
1/4c Sugar
1/4 tsp Shredded lime peel
1/3c Lime juice
1/2 tsp Poppy seeds
Leftover apples and tangerines if you have them!

For dressing, in a small saucepan combine sugar and water. Cook and stir over medium heat until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat; stir in lime peel, lime juice and poppy seed. Let cool.
Scoop out cantaloupes, making about 5 cups of melon balls. Arrange melon balls, strawberries and berries in a shallow container. Drizzle lime dressing over fruit. Cover and refrigerate for several hours before serving. Makes about 16 servings

Spring Potato-Radish Salad

  • 5 medium potatoes (about 1-1/2 pounds)
  • 1 cup sliced radishes
  • 2 hard-cooked eggs, chopped
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh dill or 2 teaspoons dill weed
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Dash pepper
  • Directions
  • Place potatoes in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and cook for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Drain and cool.
  • Peel and cube potatoes; place in a large bowl. Add radishes and eggs. In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, dill, vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper. Pour over potato mixture; gently toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Yield: 4 servings.