Nitty Gritty News July 9th


So far, your share has been in various bags and bunches. This week, you will have a box of your very own. We still highly recommend that you bring a bag, transfer your treasures into it, and leave your empty box at the drop site. CAREFULLY unfold the tabs on the top and bottom and gently flatten the box. If you try to force them, they could tear and they don’t hold the heavier produce well if the tabs have tears. Thanks in advance for your help.

From the Farmers….

Wow! It’s been a busy week at Nitty Gritty Dirt Farm! While others were shooting off fireworks on the 4th, we (Gigi and Robin) spent all of Saturday first picking shell peas and then shelling them and freezing them. We listened to four MPR programs while we picked and several more while we shelled, including the Prairie Home Companion anniversary show in Avon, which we had hoped to attend. It was a long job, but we have over 40 bags of peas in our freezer which will taste wonderful next winter.
On Friday, as we were returning the chicken plucker which we borrowed for butchering our first batch of broilers to Robin’s son Lucas, we received a phone call from our neighbor Chick (from whom we get our pigs). He said he had a deal for us – and we thought “oh no!” We didn’t want to try to save any more teeny tiny baby pigs – but this time he had five 50-60 pound pigs that were an in-between size for him – they were too big for the small group and too small for the older pigs at his farm – and he wondered if we or someone we knew might be interested. We conferred and decided, “We’ll take them.” So home again and building another pig pen and pig shelter and then over to the neighbor’s to pick up the five cute new pigs. They make us realize just how big our first group of five already is – probably well over 150#.
We made a new home for the turkeys – a secure and large pen with a big shade section. They seem to be very happy in their new quarters – which should suffice for them for at least a couple of weeks.
On Sunday afternoon, intern Cara arrived. Though it is only Wednesday as I write, it seems as though she has been with us from the beginning. We worked on our yurts (round living quarters) on Tuesday, and it was exciting to take advantage of Cara’s sewing ability to help with cutting out the cordura nylon and begin sewing pieces together. Hopefully by the next farm festival, we will have our colorful festival yurts up and interns living in them.
On Monday, our friends, Kevin and Connie, dairy farmers from down by Rochester, visited. They gamely put up with our work day, following us around as we weeded and weeded and weeded – red cabbage. We had expected our next shipment of 50 broilers to arrive on Monday morning at our post office but no phone call at the usual 6:30 AM, so we assumed that they would not arrive until Tuesday. We didn’t remember that the holiday might change the delivery time – and the phone call announcing their arrival came on Gigi’s phone at about 3:00 pm while she was on her way to teach at the Homestead Pickin’ Parlor. I (Robin) didn’t answer my phone, so she called Jacq to pass on this less than desired news since we only had Jacq’s car at the farm. But Kevin and Connie saved the day. They drove into North Branch to the feed mill to pick up a bag of Chick starter and another of shavings for bedding (the other was in Gigi’s trunk in Richfield) and then back to Harris to the post office to pick up the box of chicks. All except one were fine – healthy and cute and ready to eat and drink. Thanks Kevin and Connie for all of your help and the great pictures.
And on Wednesday, cookbook author, Janet Fletcher came to visit to talk to us about our farm for the cookbook she is writing and in which we will be one of the featured farms. It was a lot of fun sharing our meal and our day – though it was a bit disconcerting to have our meal inspected so carefully. Janet and her publisher Doralece will be back tomorrow to follow us around as we harvest more food and pack your weekly share.
And in the middle of all of this, many feet of new irrigation hose was laid and plants watered, bushels of peas were picked and hundreds of feet of rows were weeded – and we still had energy for a spirited group lesson and added a drum circle time.
Until next week. Robin and Gigi

What’s in your share this week:

Norland red Potatoes
Knight shelling peas
Cascadia edible podded peas
Primax green cabbage
Blues Chinese cabbage
Joi Choi Bok Choi
Bull’s Blood Beets and Greens
Vates Collard Greens (baby)
Easter Egg and Pink Beauty Radishes
MAYBE Packman Broccoli
Candy Onion

Ideas for using your veggies this week – make slaw. Today, I used a mix of Chinese cabbage, green cabbage both sliced very fine, chopped broccoli, shredded radishes and chopped onion. I sprinkled the mix with a little salt and let it sit for about ½ hour then squeezed out the water. I made a vinaigrette of olive oil, apple cider vinegar, honey, ground ginger, salt and pepper. It was pretty and very tasty. You could use just about any mix of cabbage type greens including the collards and bok choy. Just thinly slice. Add some crunchy veggies like radishes or peas. And either use a creamy dressing or any kind of vinaigrette. We have also been enjoying a variety of stir fries this week, using a lot of bok choy and Chinese cabbage with a variety of seasonings.


Use the addresses to google or mapquest or look up the drop site from your particular location. Keep in mind that the folks at the drop sites are volunteers, allowing us to use their space (and in some cases, their homes) as drop sites. Be nice to them. We couldn't do this without them. If you have any questions about your share etc., you should ask us, not them. They have enough to do....as do we all. All deliveries occur on Thursday afternoons. Approximate drop site times are listed below each location. The end times vary but you should pick up your share as early as possible. Look for the NITTY GRITTY DIRT FARM DROP SITE signs at your delivery locations along with lists to check your name off when you pick up, and a description of exactly what you should take.

Nitty Gritty Dirt Farm
10386 Sunrise Road (Cty Rd 9)
Harris MN 55032

35 north past North Branch to the Harris Exit. Turn Right.
Go into Harris, cross RR tracks to stop sign. Turn Left
Go 2 blocks to County Rd 9, also called Sunrise Road. (at Heartbreakers Bar) Turn Right. Farm is 4 1/2 miles out on left side of road. Look for Nitty Gritty Dirt Farm sign.
Shares available from 3:00 to 6:00

United Theological Seminary 3000 5th Street NW, New Brighton MN 55112
694 to Silver Lake Road exit. Go south to 5th and turn west (right). Go three blocks to UTS. Follow driveway (left) to the maintenance garage at the far north end of the parking lot. Shares available after 3:30 PM to 6:00 PM.

Pilgrims United Church of Christ
8801 Rice Lake Road, Maple Grove MN 55369
Just off of Weaver Lake Road across from Rice Lake Elementary School. Use main church door. Shares available from 3:30 to 6:00.

Acadia Cafe
329 Cedar Avenue South, Minneapolis
NW corner of Cedar and Riverside. Park on Riverside or
in lot behind the cafe.
Shares available after 3:15 PM until 6:00 PM

Vincent Avenue
3646 Vincent Avenue North, Mpls MN 55412
1/2 block north of 36th Ave N, and 2 blocks south of Dowling. Park on the street. Shares available after 3:30 until 6:00 PM

Additional drop sites may be added as shares are sold. Drop Sites are subject to change but plenty of notice will be given and alternate sites will be within close proximity to the original drop site.


Robin Raudabaugh & Gigi Nauer

Nitty Gritty Dirt Farm

10386 Sunrise Road

PO Box 235

Harris MN 55032

(651) 226-1186


Also Nitty Gritty Goods Wool CSA
Robin Raudabaugh

We are a 15 acre Community Supported Agriculture farm providing a wide variety of fresh, organically and sustainably grown vegetables, fruit, lamb, pork, turkey and chicken. Located one hour north of the Twin Cities, we deliver to several metro locations. We are intentional about our organic and sustainable farming practices which include (but are not limited to): maintaining soil health through green and animal manures, compost, mulch, cover crops and crop rotations; Organic Pest Management to naturally monitor, prevent and control insects and other pests; maintaining animal health and well-being through the use of portable and loose housing and pasture rotations. Owner/operators Robin Raudabaugh and Gigi Nauer provide over 30 years experience in fruit, vegetable and livestock production, education and customer service. Our primary goal is to build community, relationships and personal health and well-being around good food and the intentional living that creates it. We’d love to have you join us.

Not every day is like this but we try.

Not every day is like this but we try.

Not every day is like this either.

Not every day is like this either.