Local Food and Farm Products 
Volume 7 Number 13    March 31st, 2015

FIELD NOTES: Harmony Hill Farm

Its been the strangest of seasons. Early February, winter left town and told spring to do her thing which she did. First she woke up the daffodills who then woke up the quince, forsythia, lilacs, camellias, rhododendrons, apples, pears and here we are all blooming the middle of March. So beautiful are the camellias who most years get bitten in the bud. As usual, the frost monsters are lurking in the dark of clear starry nights but some folks say they may not come this year. We’ll see. 

February also saw the rising-up of a 12x36' hoop house thanks to the expertise of Sean, James and  10 other workshop participants. Thanks again everyone. We’re still in getting-gardens-going mode so it may be Fall before it becomes a fully integrated part of our farm  but when I poked my head in today, the temp was close to 100 with 90% humidity. Whew, it will need some adjustments unless we want to specialize in jungle produce, bugs and fungus. 

We officially welcomed Tyler and Sharon Hill to HHF last night with a hearty farm dinner shared with farmer friends in our area. Tyler, who holds a degree in Business Ag is eager to raise organic produce will help get the gardens into full production. Sharon has a full time off-the-farm job in Jackson. We are looking forward to this new farming venture with them. 

As usual, Emily has more irons in the fire than she can hold onto. Learning to seed start and get seedlings planted in a timely manner is high on her learning curve. This past January, MLH growers made a commitment to aim for variety and extended seasons. Its one thing to commit on paper, quite another to make it happen. We’re working diligently but the motto holds true, “the faster I works, the behinder I gets.”  Takes 3 lifetimes to get it right. E


On Thursday, March 26, Mother Lode Harvest held its first seasonal cooking class at Amador 360 in Plymouth, which was deemed to be a great success. The focus of the class was greens, and MLH member and chef Shelly Hills treated the nearly-full house to demonstrations and tastes of 5 fabulous dishes featuring cooking greens and other seasonal produce, like carrots, beets, and grapefruit. (See two of her recipes below in the recipes section.) Shelly did a tremendous job, executing and explaining the dishes flawlessly, and entertaining the crowd with stories of her training at Le Cordon Bleu. She also talked about her experiences as an MLH member and why she loves her box subscription! Thank you, Shelly!
Another facet of the class was pairing the dishes Shelly created with wine, which was done expertly by Brian Miller of Amador 360. Brian was on hand to pour the wines and give the flavor profiles of each choice. Many thanks to Amador 360 for their help and hospitality in hosting this event!
Look for more seasonal cooking classes to come, hopefully one each quarter.


Farm to Fork Fundraiser
A special spring harvest Farm to Fork dinner will be held at Rosebud's Café in Jackson on Thursday, April 16 to benefit Mother Lode Harvest.
There will be one seating, 6-9 pm.  There are just 40 tickets available.  The vegetarian dinner will feature fresh, seasonal produce from the cafe's farm, such as asparagus, peas, and all the wonderful greens that thrive in the spring, in the cafe's delightful ambiance.  Mother Lode Harvest's creative members will be offering items for a silent auction, such as a stay in a cottage on one of the farms, apple wood chips for barbecuing, a massage, and a box of seasonal produce.  Tickets are available at Rosebud's Café, and at Mother Lode Harvest, or call 419-2503 or 245-6042 for more information.

MLH NEWS: Volunteers needed!

We need volunteers for all sorts of tasks, from staffing the distribution center and delivering produce boxes, to helping with special events and publicity. If you want to contribute some time and get involved with your association, it is a great way to get to meet our producers and other customers! For more information or to sign up for specific tasks, call or email Carolyn (distribution center or box delivery) at 223-4814 or, or Michelle (special events and publicity) at 419-2503 or


Mixed Greens with Cumin and Paprika

12 cups mixed greens - kale, broccoli rabe, chard or beet, escarole, mustard greens


4 large garlic cloves

1 cup chopped parsley

1 cup chopped cilantro

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 teaspoons paprika

2 teaspoons ground cumin

For garnish oil cured black olives, wedges of lemons and tomato

Discard any inedible parts of the greens, such as kale stems and tough ribs. Set the leaves in a steamer - the tougher ones on the bottom, the most tender on the top - and cook until tender. Or boil each type separately in salted water, then drain.  Chop into pieces 1 inch square.

Pound the garlic with 1/2 teaspoon salt in a mortar until smooth, the work in the parsley and client and pound them briefly to release their flavors.

Warm the oil in the paprika and cumin in a wide skillet over medium heat until they release their fragrances. Don't let them burn.  Stir in the garlic, then add the greens and cook until any extra moisture has evaporated.  Taste for salt.  Pile into a dish and garnish with olives, lemon and tomato.

Spaghetti and Red Wine Rosa

Servings: 5

1 medium red beet, peeled and diced

1 tablespoon minced garlic

3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, in all

1/2 cup walnut halves, toasted and then finely ground

1 medium red onion, peeled and juliened

3/4 cup zinfandel or other robust dry red wine

1 cup finely chopped swiss chard

1 pound spaghetti, best quality imported

6 ounces gorgonzola cheese, crumbled

Cover the beet with salted water in a small sauce pan and simmer until fork tender. Drain and set aside.

Heat 1/2 cup of the olive oil over low heat in a small sauce pan or skillet.  Add the garlic and steep on low heat for five minutes, taking care not to brown the garlic.  Stir in the ground walnuts and remove from heat.  Scrape into a bowl and reserve until finishing the dish.

Bring 6 - 8 quarts of salted water to a full boil, stir in the spaghetti and cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente. Drain and keep warm.

In a large skillet or dutch oven big enough to hold all the pasta later, heat the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil over medium heat.  Add the onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until softened and just starting to color, about 5 to 8 minutes. Add the beets and the wine, some salt and pepper and bring to a simmer.  

Simmer the wine mixture for five minutes then stir in the swiss chard.  Cook until the greens are wilted and tender, about three minutes more. Remove the heat and stir in the walnut-garlic paste.  

Now add the hot spaghetti and toss to coat the sauce.  Stir in the gorgonzola and a few grindings of fresh black pepper and serve immediately.


Single Boxes
Lettuce  - Abbondanza
Escarole - Casa de La Pradera
Sorrel - Humbug Creek
Spinach - Humbug Creek
Walnuts - Abbondanza
Meyer lemon - Abbondanza
Family Boxes

Lettuce -  Abbondanza
Sunflower greens - Butte Mountain Farm
Sorrel -  Humbug Creek
Salad mix -  Casa de La Pradera
Carrots - Casa de La Pradera
Walnuts - Abbondanza
Meyer lemon - Abbondanza
Grapefruit - Paloma Pollinators

Customers Dick and Josie


Mother Lode Harvest has local food and farm products available to order at


Orders received during that time can be picked up on Tuesdays between 10:30 am and noon, or 4:30 to 6:00 pm, at 1235 Jackson Gate Road in Jackson, behind Teresa's Restaurant. Prepaid orders may also be picked up in Volcano or Plymouth. Payment may be made at pickup by cash or check made out to Mother Lode Harvest, or before pickup by PayPal.

New customers will need to register by using the "join" button on the website before they can shop. A signed customer agreement and membership dues may be mailed to MLH, or brought to the distribution center with your first pickup.

If you have any questions or problems with using the website, please contact our customer coordinator, Michelle, at, or 419-2503.


MLH Calendar of Events

April 16, 6-9 pm: Farm-to-fork Dinner at Rosebud's Cafe, Jackson

April 25: The Great Sutter Creek Duck Race, Sutter Creek

May 2: Amador Four Fires, Plymouth

May 17: Spring Quarter Farm Tour-- Winterport Farm, Ione


Copyright © 2012 Mother Lode Harvest, All rights reserved.
Our mailing address is: P.O. Box 534 Amador City, CA 95601
Mother Lode Harvest is a non-profit membership association.