Update 2013

We would like to inform you that the Bed-Stuy Farm Share will be taking a hiatus for the 2013 season. 

This past year, we worked hard to cover the bare minimum of what would be necessary to continue the project, but in the end, we felt that it was not enough, and we were unable to find other volunteers to take on the work that we find critical to the success of the project: communication, community building and education. Through our efforts last year we learned that our desire to create direct relationships between farmers and consumers cannot come to fruition without a strong team of volunteers who have the time to build community amongst the members and constantly educate and update the members about the farmland, the farmers, and the food they receive every week.

Consequently, we are taking a break from managing the Farm Share and planning to spend the next year eating with our neighbors and exploring the new community food projects in our neighborhood. We hope that the energy we used to sustain the Bed-Stuy Farm Share the past eight years can be harnessed to engage with the neighborhood and determine what the future of this project should look like. We invite you to do the same and to keep us informed of your thoughts and desires for the future of this group.

To kickstart the process of communication, we have put together a survey of the past year and would really appreciate your feedback:http://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/1075200/Bed-Stuy-Farm-Share-BSFS-End-of-Season-Survey-2012 

Our previous farmer, Hector Tejada, for example, is trying out a new model called a “CSA at the Market” this year, where you can get the cost savings of a CSA with the flexibility and choice of the farmers market. Try this and other community food projects out this year! Check out details below.

In the meantime, here are some other options in the area for fresh, local food:

  • Buying Club: Bed Stuy Bounty - check out this buying club run by our very own Melissa Danielle
  • Farmer’s Markets: Conuco Farm’s CSA-in-the-market: Hector Tejada, who was the Bed-Stuy Farm Share farm from 2005-2012, will be giving people bonus dollars towards purchases at his Fort Greene Market stand for people who want to commit to shop there all season. More details here.
  • Malcom X Boulevard Farmer’s Market - Seasonal (July – November) Saturday market located on Malcom X Boulevard between Chauncey and Marion Streets
  • Hattie Carthan Community Farmers Market - Seasonal (July – November) weekend Markets. They also offer Mixed Food baskets throughout the season.
  • NYC Greenmarkets - General Info on NYC Greenmarkets:

Food Co-ops:

Other NYC CSAs: You can look into joining another CSA in NYC, but you must be willing to pick up in another neighborhood.

  • Check here for locations of other CSAs or do a Google search of CSA + a neighborhood you frequent.
  • Fresh Food Box Program: 462 Halsey Community Gardens – This is a new initiative with Grow NYC, where you buy a mixed bag of produce from their wholesale farmers.

Community Gardens

There is always a lot of good stuff going on food-wise in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, and beyond, so keep your radar tuned for new opportunities! And let us know what you find! We sincerely appreciate your participation in the past seasons and welcome your comments and suggestions throughout 2013.

Your neighbors,
Alyssa, Jazmine, Lauren, Marian, and Tracie

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CSA-in-the-Market in 2013

In 2013, our farmer, Hector Tejada, of Conuco Farm, is trying a new CSA model.  Enjoy the cost savings of a (Community Supported Agriculture) CSA and the choice and flexibility of he farmers market.

Here’s how it works: You make an investment in the farm now, when Hector needs to buy seeds and build new infrastructure for the season.  Your investment gives you a debit card to spend at the Conuco Farm stand at the Fort Greene Greenmarket throughout the season (Saturdays from May to November).  You shop for what you want, when you want right at the market stand.  Conuco Farm tallies your selections and debits your account.  If you are out of town and miss a market day your balance stays the same.  All you have to do is make sure you spend your account by the end of the season, because there are no refunds.

As incentive for this commitment, Hector gives you a 15% bonus on your investment.  Share prices start at $350, but you can invest anything above that.  For a $500 investment, for example, you actually get to spend $575 at the Conuco Farm Stand.

Interested in joining? Print the application here and mail it in to Hector Tejada of Conuco Farm.  Questions? Email Hector at hectortjd@gmail.com


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End of Summer Chili

So yes, technically it’s now fall, but this chili reminds me of summer and is the perfect link between the seasons-especially since most of the ingredients are being harvested right now. The dish proves simple too, and you can’t really overcook it, which means if you want to leave it simmering all day that’s fine.

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Broccoli Slaw

Part of the joy of a CSA is finding ways to use veggies you wouldn’t otherwise buy, and finding new ways to use old favorites. Broccoli Slaw falls in the latter category.

With our broccoli portion this week I went in search of a way to make raw broccoli tasty. And I found it at a great recipe site called Smitten Kitchen.

(Photo credit: Smitten Kitchen)

The pros of the recipe is that it tastes *amazing* (you’ll come a way with a whole new appreciation for broccoli) and that you can make it several days in advance with no worries about keeping it in the fridge. In other words, it’s perfect fare for summer grills out in the backyard. But there is a downside – Slicing the broccoli is tedious and time-consuming. Still, in my view the end result is worth the effort.

To make about six cups of slaw you’ll need:

2 heads of broccoli
1/2 cup thinly sliced almonds, toasted
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped

1/2 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
3 tablespoons finely chopped shallots

Trim broccoli and cut it into large chunks. Then you need to slice it thinly. I’ve found this easiest using a mandolin, but Smitten Kitchen points out you can use a food processor or just do it the old-fashioned way. Once you have it thinly sliced, throw the broccoli into a mixing bowl with your toasted almonds, cranberries and red onion.

Next, make up the dressing in any kind of container that you’ll be able to shake it in. Throw all the dressing ingredients into the container, add a bit of salt and pepper and give it a vigorous shake.

Pour the dressing over the dry ingredients and voilà!

No reason not to eat it immediately, but I think it’s extra nice in the summer to let it chill in the fridge for a while before serving.


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Kale Salad With Toasted Pecan and Cheddar

With all the kale that we have been getting in our CSA, sometimes it’s hard to come up with new things to do with it. I find a simple kale salad is a great, healthy way to use up greens. Plus, it can be done quickly.  One of my favorites is shredded kale tossed with red wine vinegar and mixed with roasted pecans, raw onion (also found in the CSA), and slivers of a sharp cheddar cheese.

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First Pickup of 2012 Season and Orientation

The moment that the 2012 members have been waiting for – the first pickup of the season is next week!

Our first pickup and the mandatory orientation meeting will be on June 19th at the Bedford YMCA. You’ll get an opportunity to meet your farmers, we’ll explain how the volunteer shifts work, you’ll be able to sign up for your shifts, and we can answer any questions that you may have about the farm share. It’ll be about 45 minutes long. Please remember to bring your own bags.

1121 Bedford Avenue @ Monroe St.
Tuesday, June 19th
Time: 7 PM

Here’s a note from Amy and Oba about what will be in the first pickup:

Expect tender spring roots like radishes and maybe salad turnips, garlic scapes, kale, pac choy, lettuce, spinach, and other spring greens. Soon we will have peas and fresh herbs too.

And for those of you who haven’t sent in your payments yet, please be sure to send it to our farmers in the next few days:
Bed-Stuy Farm Share
c/o Cory Walker
PO Box 61
Westminister Station, VT 05159

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Simple Mahshi

A couple years ago I stumbled on this recipe for “False Mahshi: Layered Swiss Chard, Beets, Rice, and Beef” in the New York Times.  In an article about the Iraqi New Year, Joan Nathan had included this recipe, adapted from Esperanza Basson.  Well, even that seemed a bit labor intensive so I cut it down into a super simple, healthy, and yummy version. Also, it’s a great way to use the kale and beets we have been getting.

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Winter Share Available – Join Today!

Bed-Stuy Farm Share has partnered again with Winter Sun Farms to provide a winter share available for pick up right here in Bed-Stuy.  Purchase your share online today.  Winter Sun Farms is a Hudson Valley based company that purchases excess vegetables and berries from local farms and carefully freezes them so you can eat fresh, local food all winter long.

Shares will be distributed on a Wednesday evening once per month from December through April at Common Ground Coffee, located on Tompkins Avenue between Putnam and Jefferson.  You can choose a 4-month ($146) or a 5-month ($180) share and choose to purchase eggs, as well.

Purchase your share online today.

Learn more about Winter Sun Farms.

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Recipe: Corny Squash Soup with Kale Chips

Corny Squash Soup With Kale Chips It’s squash and corn season at the farm, and a pile of lovely looking acorn and butternut squashes, a couple ears of sweet corn, and a bunch of kale.  As the temperature drops, nothing … Continue reading

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Fair Food Festival – Sept. 24th!

Please join us at the upcoming Fair Food Festival this Saturday, September 24th, 2011 in Downtown Brooklyn!

The event and day of action is hosted by Community / Farmworker Alliance and co-sponsored by NESRI, East New York Farms, ROC-NY, Brandworkers, Small Planet Institute, South Bronx CSA, Brooklyn Food Coalition, Bed-Stuy Farm Share, Prospect Park CSA, Just Food, Domestic Workers United, the Poverty Initiative, and Workers United.

Bring your friends and family for: workshops, film screenings, games, art, children’s musical story time, live music, and hourly rabble-rousing in front of Trader Joe’s!

The event is based at the Commons, in Brooklyn, from 10am to 6pm, with regular visits to (actions at!) the local Trader Joe’s, just three blocks down. The Commons is at 388 Atlantic Avenue (btw, Bond and Hoyt Streets).  For a full schedule, visit the Community / Farmworker Alliance website.  The event will culminate with our biggest action of the day at 4pm – a Spectacular Brooklyn Trader Joe’s Rally!

The CIW’s Campaign for Fair Food improves wages and working conditions for Florida tomato pickers by calling on major buyers of tomatoes to pay one penny more per pound—which would nearly double farmworkers’ wages—and to implement a code of conduct in the supply chain.

All across the country, Fair Food activists have been urging Trader Joe’s to ensure that their tomatoes are picked by workers who earn a decent wage and work in humane conditions. Trader Joe’s continual refusal to sign onto such an agreement has disgusted customers nationwide, leading many to criticize Trader Joe’s usage of the “Wal*Mart Model” of low price and low wages.

If you have any questions or would like to get involved, please contact us at: farmworkersolidarity@gmail.com

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