Food Smart/Food Safe
When I was a kid my dad gave me a little green book that was published by his employer. At that time his employer was the USDA and he was a food safety inspector. I kept the little book for years and wish I still had it. I don’t know if it was intended for kids or not, but I LOVED the little educational cartoons. The main character was a nasty looking germ and he showed up in all kinds of places where safe food handling was not practiced. My favorite was Mr. Germ wearing a straw hat and sitting on a toilet seat with a fishing pole . . . a comical reminder to ALWAYS wash your hands after visiting!
Food safety was an issue then and it remains an issue today. I think public awareness is probably greater now with increased communication and educational outreach. And well it should be! All of us with Market at Dothan are committed to bringing you the healthiest food in the Wiregrass with no chemical or pesticide residue, but nature being what it is it’s still up to each individual to handle, store and prepare it properly.
That being said, what follows are hints, tips, websites, resources, etc that we hope will be a blessing and help for you and yours.
Hats off to the USDA whose ongoing efforts continue to help keep our country’s food systems safe. If you’ve ever visited a third world country (Haiti in my case) you should have a profound awareness of the great good they’ve done for us through the years.
Health.gov goes into a bit more detail about kitchen practices and offers additional resources.
If you are brave enough to check youtube.com videos about washing fruits and vegetables, you’ll find everything from expensive ozone machines to recommendations NOT to wash your produce! Ridiculous! We like this tried and true natural recipe:
1 cup water
1 cup distilled white vinegar
1 tablespoon baking soda
20 drops grapefruit seed extract (available at Whole Foods or your local health food store or you can substitute lemon juice in a pinch)
Combine all ingredients in a large container. Then, transfer to a spray bottle with a pump. Spray mixture on produce (avoid using on mushrooms), let sit 5 to 10 minutes and rinse.
Kraft Foods has their own Top 10 list.
There is a WEALTH of information available at the FDA’s Education Resource Library.
This link is a printable Refrigerator & Freezer Storage Chart.
Have you tried Patty Pan squash yet? These versatile members of the Cucurbita pepo family are gaining in popularity as more people find new ways to enjoy them. They are in the same category as traditional summer squash, zucchini and pumpkins, but have their own unique taste and characteristics. Our customer, Angelica G. advises that their more dense texture helps them freeze quite nicely.
But if you’d rather enjoy them fresh . . .
Stuffing seems to be a favorite way to prepare Patty Pans. This recipe includes corn, black beans and tomatoes.
Delishably offers a wealth of great ideas!
While this recipe calls for veal, the idea can be adapted to other meats and even other seasonings.
Ever have egg on your face! In my case it’s EGGPLANT! This guy from last week (who wound up making a tasty Italian dish for some sweet children) was not birthed, I mean grown, at Sandy Valley, but was in fact from Avalon Farms. Just wanted to clear that up!
For you folks from Daleville, we hope you’re taking advantage of the Daleville Farmer’s Market. Both Richter Farms and Avalon Farms are participating this summer and we think Daleville’s pretty lucky to have them and their fresh healthy products!
This Week’s Grower Notes
We have the best Growers in the Wiregrass! Please learn more about them on our Grower Page.
HORTON’S FARM & DANNY’S GREENS: By the time you read this we will be finished with the Soil Biology Workshop hosted by Mayim Farms. We’re excited to learn more about managing God’s good earth responsibly.
On a different note, those of you who have been asking about bulk blueberries take heart! Our grower has had his share of rain woes and hopes to have them available in the near future.
SANDSPUR FARMS: The CSA’s continue to be popular items and we have several options available to choose from.
SANDY VALLEY: Scotty will be off next week. The spring vegetables are pretty much done for the time being BUT, the watermelons are coming along nicely and should be start being ready in a few weeks. Three varieties are growing and one of them is sure to be your favorite.
WORKING COWS DAIRY has been on “holiday” as they say in Europe visiting family.
AVALON FARMS: Rain! So, much rain. We need the rain, but too much rain causes problems for berries. Blackberries in particular are very delicate. They can’t be picked or stored wet. Hard rains literally damage the ripe fruits causing them to get “smooshy” (technical farm term ????). I’m throwing away more than I’m selling. If any of them slip by me, I apologize. As always, my customer’s satisfaction is the top priority. If you are ever not completely satisfied, let me know and I’ll make it right. Wendy@AvalonFarms.us
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Dothan Pickup: Dothan Nurseries, 1300 Montgomery Highway, Dothan, AL 36303
Daleville Pickup: Daleville Chamber of Commerce Office
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