Your Brain On Kale

kaleWe were more than a little discombobulated unloading the truck yesterday in Verona. We couldn’t seem to remember which greens were which, or figure out what ordered they belonged in on the tables. Very odd. This was Week 21, after all, and we ought to have the CSA distribution down to a science.

And then someone figured out what the problem was: no kale. “We can’t function without it,” somebody quipped.

Yes, 2009 has been The Year of Kale. The software behind the “What we’re writing about” box to the left of this page renders the blog’s most frequent post tags in the largest type, and the largest of the large is … drumroll, please …. kale. For those of you keeping score, we have had kale–WhiteRussian, Red, Curly, Siberian or Lacinato–in weeks 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19 and 20.

And yes, there does seem to be a connection between kale and cognitive function. Take a look at this article (headline: “Brain Food”) from Rodale’s Men’s Health magazine.

The last distribution for Upper Meadows’ 2009 CSA is just days away. I’ve got some kale stockpiled in the freezer, but not nearly enough for the winter. So I guess the bottom line is this: Don’t ask me to do any serious thinking until next spring.


Restore Yourself mini-workshop in Milford, PA on Sept 11th with Dr. Edy Greenblatt

Join us at the FREE Restore Yourself mini-workshop in Milford, PA on Sept 11th with Dr. Edy Greenblatt
Here at UMF, we work all year to help you get nutrition and social sustenance from eating our organic food.  To further help you find your physical, psychological, social and cognitive energies, we invite you to join us at the FREE Restore Yourself mini-workshop and book signing this Friday, Sept 11th across the river from us at the Seventh Street Coffee Shop in Milford, PA.  The workshop will  be taught by 2009 Indie Book Award winning author and friend-of-the-farm Dr. Edy Greenblatt and we’ll be there to learn.  If you haven’t yet come out to do your volunteer hours, why not come out to the farm at noon this Friday and then come with us to the workshop after work?  Here are the details:577_RestoreYourselfCoverLarge

Restore Yourself: The Antidote for Professional Exhaustion
Mini-Workshop and Book Signing
with Edy Greenblatt, Ph.D.
Friday, Sept 11th, 2009
5:15 pm – 7:00 pm
Seventh Street Coffee Shop
611 Broad Street
Milford, PA 18337
For info on Dr. Greenblatt’s award winnng book, go to
For info on the workshop, see
For more info on the event, email or call 626.644.7745
To schedule your volunteer time at the farm on Friday (or any day), call Len at 570.228.8368
See you Friday!

Stinging nettles reward foragers

Stinging nettles reward foragers
The edible wild plant called stinging nettles will, in fact, sting a careless forager. But the greens are bright and peppery, and can be used in dishes ranging from lasagna to pesto to soup. The Wall Street Journal (4/20)

“Nutritional gatekeepers” crucial in promoting family health

The New York Times‘ health section has a piece on “nutritional gatekeepers”, the person in a family who primarily buys and prepares food, determining the healthfulness of meals in the household:

A gatekeeper who struggles with unhealthy habits and eating choices will typically pass those problems on to family members. By the same token, gatekeepers who improve their habits can improve the health of the whole family

Gatekeepers, who can fall into five different cooking types, are often influenced by recipes and serving dish size. To figure out your cooking personality, try taking this quiz. Let us know the results: It will help us bring you the best recipes for everything that’s growing at Upper Meadows Farm.

Alice Waters: “I feel that good food should be a right”

Alice Waters changed the culinary discussion when she started Chez Panisse in 1971 based on her strong belief in the importance of fresh, local food. To critics who say she is elitist, she responds in this three-part interview with CBS News’ 60 Minutes that everybody deserves wholesome, pesticide-free food.