Volume 1; Issue 19 October 12, 2009
Sitting here looking at the snow on the ground, it still hard to believe that the summer is gone and that our first CSA season is over. We have learned so much this year and you all have been so great learning along with us. We have survived Dan’s bought with surgery and recovery. We have flourished this summer and have had a wonderful harvest. We have been very blessed to have all of you as a part of our family!
We just wanted to say “Thank You” again. And we hope that this has been a great experience for you. We will happily welcome you all back next year. If would be helpful for us if you could shoot us an e-mail letting us know what you want next year. We are not looking for the financial commitment until January; but if we know what size you are wanting then we can start planning. We have made the decision that all previous CSA family members have the first “pick” on our CSA list. As we are anticipating a big growth next year, we want to be sure that we keep you all in our family. We will be sending out reminder notices around Thanksgiving time. We wish you all the very best over the winter months and we look forward to hearing from you in January 2010.
Again, we have been blessed to have you a part of our CSA family.
So from our house to yours,
Dan & Donna Moe
ITEM OF THE WEEK – Purple Carrots
What would you say to a glass of purple carrot juice? Some aren’t so sure. Well, neither were we! Purple carrots have been around since the 900s (AD). Guess where they originated from? Would you believe around the Afghanistan vicinity? It’s true, by the 1000s A.D. they had migrated into Iran, Northern Arabia, Syria and North Africa. In the 1100s A.D. they were in Spain and by the 1200 A.D. they had migrated to Italy and China. Carrots come in a rainbow of colors – purple, red, yellow, even white. We are learning that these plant pigments perform a range of protective duties – not just for the plant but for the human body as well.
Red carrots derive their color mainly from lycopene, a type of carotene believed to guard against heart disease and some types of cancers. Yellow carrots accumulate xanthophylls, pigments similar to beta-carotene which supports good eye health. Purple carrots possess an entirely different class of pigments – anthocyanins – which are powerful antioxidants.
Carrots are by far one of the richest source of carotenoids – just one cup provides 16,679 IUs of beta-carotene and 3,432 REs (retinol equivalents), or roughly 686.3% the RDA for vitamin A. High carotenoid intake has been linked with a 20% decrease in postmenopausal breast cancer and an up to 50% decrease in the incidence of cancers of the bladder, cervix, prostate, colon, larynx, and esophagus. But it is not just beta-carotene that promotes good health. Scientists now think that carrots’ protective effects are the result of a team effort among several substances abundant in carrots, including alpha-carotene-another, less publicized carotenoid.
The best known health benefit of carrots is beta-carotene, which helps to protect vision, especially night vision. After beta-carotene is converted to vitamin A in the liver, it travels to the retina where it is transformed into rhodopsin, a purple pigment that is necessary for night-vision. Plus beta-carotene’s powerful antioxidant actions help provide protection against macular degeneration and the development of senile cataracts, the leading cause of blindness in the elderly.
A lesser known fact is that food intake, such as carrots, that are rich in carotenoids may be beneficial to blood sugar regulation. Research has suggested that physiological levels, as well as dietary intake, of carotenoids may be inversely associated with insulin resistance and high blood sugar levels.
A Few Quick Serving Ideas:
Roasted Root Vegetables with Apple Juice
Caramelized roasted vegetables made with a white wine syrup.
- 2 tablespoons and 3/4 teaspoon butter
- 2-1/4 cups apple juice
- 3/4 cup dry white wine
- 1 lb beets
- 1 lb parsnip
- 1 lb carrots
- 1 lb sweet potatoes
- 1 lb rutabagas
- salt and pepper to taste
Boil apple juice and wine in a large saucepan until reduced to 3/4 cup, about 30 minutes. Whisk in butter or margarine.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
Peel and cut vegetables into l/2 inch pieces. Divide between 2 roasting pans. Pour apple juice mixture over vegetables. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to coat.
Roast until vegetables are tender and golden, stirring occasionally, about 40 minutes.
Yields: 6 servings.
Super Energy Kale Soup
This quick and easy version of potato kale soup has extra vegetables for more flavor and nutrition and takes little time to prepare.
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 5 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 medium carrot, diced into ¼-inch cubes (about 1 cup)
- 1 cup diced celery
- 2 red potatoes, diced into ½-inch cubes
- 3 cups kale, rinsed, stems removed and chopped very fine
- 2 tsp dried thyme
- 2 tsp dried sage
- salt and pepper to taste
- Chop garlic and onions and let sit for 5 minutes to bring out their hidden health benefits.
- Heat 1 TBS broth in a medium soup pot.
- Healthy Sauté onion in broth over medium heat for about 5 minutes stirring frequently.
- Add garlic and continue to sauté for another minute.
- Add broth, carrots, and celery and bring to a boil on high heat.
- Once it comes to a boil reduce heat to a simmer and continue to cook for another 5 minutes. Add potatoes and kale and cook until potatoes are tender, about 15 more minutes.
- Add rest of ingredients and cook another 5 minutes. If you want to simmer for a longer time for extra flavor and richness, you may need to add a little more broth.
This Week’s Items:
- Purple Carrots
- Detroit Red Beets
- Red Leaf Lettuce
- Hot Peppers Mixed