Hi there!
 
September is finally here, and it's been a pretty cold and slick one so far. However, it looks like we'll have a break from the rain starting tomorrow and the temperatures will creep back up by the weekend. This week's bag has a variety of Fall flavors (concord grapes, cabbage and cauliflower) and some summer holdouts (ground beef, carrots and sweet peppers), so no matter the weather, you'll have some delicious meals to make.

Maybe you've all settled into a new Fall routine, but things are busy over here at Fresh Fork! We have had lots of announcements go out in the last few days, but in case you missed any of the big ones, here's what's coming up:

  1. Winter Share 2018-19 Season Registration is now open. We begin right away after the Summer Share ends (first day is Halloween), so make sure to add your subscription to your account as soon as you've finished paying off your Summer Share.
  2. Thanksgiving pre-order is open. Pasture-raised turkeys, freshly-baked pies and packages filled with all the essentials for delicious, from-scratch side dishes.
  3. The Farm Tour is coming up next Saturday, September 22nd. This is an all-day event with breakfast, lunch, collect-your-own-eggs and pick-your-own-apples included in the cost of the ticket.
  4. This Saturday, September 15th is the Forest, Farm & Fork event Fundraiser Dinner at Wholesome Valley Farm. A fantastic and delicious fundraiser for the Wilderness Center, cooked by Chef Parker Bosley and the Wholesome Valley-Ohio City Provisions team.

For those of you who were missing an item last week (acorn squash and melons), we will have those for you this week. When you buy in bulk from farmers like we do, we purchase on weight. When all the items are heavier than average (last week's chickens, squash and melons were all pretty big!), our counts are off. We truly apologize if you were missing any items, but we are keeping track and will make sure you have replacements to make up for it.



Pro-Smoked Chicken moves from @squidnugget !

We saw Octoberfest family parties, peach prep for putting up, loads of gorgeous pickled veggies, soup, stuffed squash and so much more. Thank you for the beautiful pictures this week!
THE TURKEYS ARE COMING
Thanksgiving -- our favorite holiday of the year!-- is still a few weeks away, but for our farmers,Thanksgiving is really the culmination of a year's worth of planning and hard work, especially when breeding and raising heritage turkeys.  

Heritage turkeys are turkeys that can naturally reproduce their same offspring. Most commercial poultry breeds are cross-breeds bred for specific characteristics - usually fast growth and large breasts. Traditional "market turkeys" have to come from a hatchery that controls the genetics.  

In 2014, I invested in a program with the Sustainable Poultry Network. This network of heritage poultry breeders work together to preserve and improve the genetics of heritage chickens and turkeys. After some experimentation, we settled on the "Standard Bronze" breed. It resembles an Eastern Wild Turkey and is very hardy. I collected 75 hens and 5 toms for breeding.

Hardy is good. Turkeys aren't smart, and one of the biggest struggles with hatchery birds is that they don't do well in the wet or the cold, especially when young. They will tend to crowd each other and many suffocate.  

The Heritage birds are a pleasure to raise. They are almost social in the way they are curious about you and, honestly, what food you might have. The downside to raising Heritage birds, though, is the time it takes and they don't all hatch at the same time. Instead of fattening a turkey in 16 weeks, they take up to 28 weeks. The females, called Hens, rarely size up to a good market weight. 

In addition to taking longer, we also have to keep a breeding flock year round. This means in March, we must provide artificial light to help their glands activate and produce the hormones that allow them to reproduce. In March and April we start setting eggs in the incubators, hoping to get a 50% or better hatch rate for birds that will then be raised out for Thanksgiving.  

But when one perseveres through the 6 months it takes to raise one of these birds, the result is a very flavorful turkey, often with "backfat." When I see the carcasses of a market turkey and a heritage bird on the table, I can tell the difference immediately by the amount of fat around the neck, the unique shape of the sternum, and the fat on the breast meat.  

I'll be taking home one of these unique birds myself this year for our Thanksgiving Dinner, and I'm already salivating thinking about the delicious meal ahead of me.
A heritage bird taking a strut through the sunrise.
Some reminders from our office
PAYMENT REMINDER FOR SEPTEMBER

September Payment Reminders will be emailed out today. Please take a moment to sign into your account and check your balance. You can make a payment with a Credit Card in your account, or you can bring cash or check to your stop.

After this payment, there is only one left in the Summer Share (for October 1), so if you're behind in your payments please make arrangements to settle up soon.

NO BEACHWOOD STOP THIS WEEK

Due to the Holiday celebrations at the Temple this week, there will be no Beachwood stop on Thursday. We will be extending the Mayfield Heights stop from 4:00-8:30 on Thursday.

If you would like to pick up anywhere other than Mayfield Heights and you would like to place a Special Order, please click here to sign into your account to change your pick up location before Tuesday at midnight. Even if you have already placed an order, it will be routed to the correct stop if you change it before that deadline. Then you can just change it back before next week. All Beachwood Special Orders will automatically be sent to Mayfield Heights this week if you do not change your location.

Your next closest stops are in Shaker Heights , Cleveland Heights , Bratenahl and Tremont .

NEW STOP TIMES FOR SHAKER & HUDSON

For the rest of the season, the Shaker Heights Stop will start a half hour later and the Hudson stop will end a half-hour earlier:

Shaker Heights, Friday 4:30-7:00
Hudson, Friday 4:00-6:30
COOKING WITH CAULIFLOWER
Cauliflower is another colder-loving veggie that thrives in our part of the world. Conveniently, it's extremely versatile and there are many different ways to prepare it besides just cutting it up in chunks and serving it next to veggie dip.



Have any favorite cauliflower recipes you'd like to share? Email them to us at info@freshforkmarket.com .
Featured Product
Our pints of Maple Syrup are the perfect pantry staple: use it on savory dishes (like roast chicken or cauliflower), tame the spiciness of a soup or curry with a little sugary drizzle, add to eggs and milk and soak slices of whole wheat bread for quick French Toast, or use it in baking instead of honey or sugar.

It's also a steal compared to other local brands you'd find at the grocery store: just $8 for a pint , harvested from the 100-year old Maple Woods on the edge of Wholesome Valley Farm.
The Winter Share will keep you in local food all Winter long.
For more details, click here .
Bag Contents
THE MINI
Green Cabbage
Concord Grapes - 1 qt
Carrots - 1 bunch
Plums - 1#
Green Beans - 1#
SMALL OMNIVORE
Green Cabbage
Concord Grapes - 1 qt
Carrots - 1 bunch
Plums - 1#
Green Beans - 1#
Lettuce 
Onion
Garlic
Ground Beef - 1 #
LARGE OMNIVORE
Green Cabbage
Concord Grapes - 1 qt
Carrots - 1 bunch
Plums - 1#
Green Beans - 1#
Lettuce 
Onion
Garlic
Ground Beef - 1 #
Sweet Red Peppers - 2
Cauliflower - 1
Apples - 6
Green Onion Brats 
SMALL VEGETARIAN
Green Cabbage
Concord Grapes - 1 qt
Carrots - 1 bunch
Plums - 1#
Green Beans - 1#
Lettuce 
Onion
Garlic
Spinach - 8 oz.
Sweet Red Peppers - 2
Cauliflower - 1
LARGE VEGETARIAN
Green Cabbage
Concord Grapes - 1 qt
Carrots - 1 bunch
Plums - 1#
Green Beans - 1#
Lettuce 
Onion
Garlic
Spinach - 8 oz.
Sweet Red Peppers - 2
Cauliflower - 1
Bartlett Pears - 6
Apples - 6
Ohio City Pasta - 1#
Sunflower Oil
VEGAN
Green Cabbage
Concord Grapes - 1 qt
Carrots - 1 bunch
Plums - 1#
Green Beans - 1#
Lettuce 
Onion
Garlic
Spinach - 8 oz.
Sweet Red Peppers - 2
Cauliflower - 1
Recipes featuring this week's share ingredients
Ingredients from share: Cauliflower, Onion
Ingredients from share: Ground Beef, Cabbage, Onion, Oil
Ingredients from share: Cauliflower, Green Beans, Carrots, Onion, Garlic, Spinach, Oil
Ingredients from share: Spinach, Garlic, Onion, Oil
For more of our recipes, click here .
More recipes online
OUR FAMILY OF COMPANIES