Nitty Gritty News August 13th

From the farmers….
It has been a HOT week here at Nitty Gritty Dirt Farm! Today with temperatures soaring into the 90’s as we picked green and yellow beans, we are hoping your beans won’t taste salty – what with all of our sweating under the searing sun. Yesterday we loaded and spread two fairly large compost piles onto the re-worked areas of our fields as well as side-dressing for the summer squash and cuke rows. Our neighbor, Chick stopped by on his way to baling straw on our back field to ask if we wanted to use his manure spreader. We replied that with the skinny strips to be fertilized, his large spreader – though a lot easier than the shovels and wheelbarrows we were using – would not work, but thanks anyway. Earlier this week, Chick combined (harvested) the oats he had planted for us on our back 5? acres. This morning, Dale picked up the gravity box with the approximately 2000 pounds of harvested oats and drove it to the mill where it was cleaned and banked for us to use in mixing some of our livestock feeds this winter.
On Tuesday evening, our kitchen was full of interns, helpers and harvested veggies as we spent the evening (after the big compost move) making jars and jars of pickles. We made over a dozen quarts of sandwich stacker dill pickles, another dozen or so of short-brine brown sugar dills, and mixed Jardinière pickles with carrots, onions, beans, broccoli, basil, garlic and hot peppers. We also canned a dozen quarts of sauerkraut we made three weeks ago and another dozen or so pints of bread and butter pickles. Our kitchen (which is pretty small) was a choreography of canning kettles, huge bowls of prepped veggies and a little music from Gigi, Emilie and Ellie to keep us all going. We have a great assortment to divide and send home with everyone. And if that were not enough, as Dale continued to load the canning kettles with jars, Cara and Jacq bottled the first batch and mixed up another batch of kombucha (fermented tea). We now have three jars going with new kombucha mothers in each. We are grateful to Cara for introducing this new treat to our household and hope to offer a farm workshop on getting you started with your own kombucha for shareholders and friends this fall. It is so easy – and so refreshing, especially on a hot day. We have plans to try some different flavors soon – how about lime basil and honey? Or maple syrup and chokecherry?

This morning, we moved the pigs – big and smaller – into new bigger – much bigger pens. Both groups seem very happy with a lot more room to run and whirl about, as well as dig and root up. Just before the big pigs got their waterer moved to its new location, a couple of them decided to lay alongside of it – without the stock panel fence helping to hold it in position. They were a bit surprised when the waterer with nearly 50 gallons of water tipped over and made a wonderful slough for them to slide in.
Tonight – after it cools down a bit – we will be hauling the two beef steers to the meat locker. It is always a bit sad to say goodbye and thank you to animals we’ve been taking care of since babyhood – but we try to take good care of them, so they can take good care of us. It is part of that great cycle of life.
Until next week……….

What’s in your share this week…

Sweet Corn - Ambrosia
Beans – Derby, Provider, Eureka
Collards - Vates
Zucchini – Raven, Elite, Lila, Sephyr, Click Pick, Horn of Plenty and Caveli
Cucumbers – Raider, Sweet Slice
Onions – Walla Walla
Dill Bouquet
Basil - Genovese

From Je Mange la Ville

Jacq found this recipe online and treated us with it at lunch yesterday. She substituted maple syrup for the orange juice and cilantro for the parsley. The site is jemangelaville.com and the specific reference page is http://www.jemangelaville.com/2007/07/01/its-hot-out-time-for-zucchini-gazpacho-and-a-dinner-out/

Zucchini Gazpacho
1 big zucchini
2 yellow tomatoes
1/2 green bell pepper
1 small sweet onion, chopped into quarters
2 cloves garlic
2 slices white bread, crusts removed
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp parsley, chopped
juice of 1/2 an orange
extra olive oil for drizzling
Blend the zucchini, tomatoes, onion quarters, bell pepper, olive oil and garlic in a food processor. Get it a bit combined and then add the bread, a bit of Tabasco, parsley and orange juice. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.
Serve into individual bowls and drizzle with the olive oil. You’re done. Go eat.


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.