Happy Summer and Blessed Solstice!

The sun shone bright and warm for the first day of summer, and oh, what a joy it was! The plants are stretching high to the sky and blossoms are popping up on everything. Buzzing bees are ensuring a great harvest of future fruits and some early season delights are making their way onto our table and into your boxes!

Your kombucha is made with Darjeeling tea and a dark sucanat sugar and is paired with my extra special garden kimchi for a fermented frenzy of beneficial bacteria. Please do not let the canning style jars fool you- these are both biologically active foods and should be refrigerated, eaten directly, or cared for like any kitchen-meets-science project: 1) loosen the lid on your kombucha and let the effervescence build over a couple days at room temperature, 2) kimchi may be left in jar at room temperature to continue the fermentation process. Please press kimchi down each day with clean hands to release juices and keep the top moist and therefore protected from contaminants. Honestly, if it were me, the kimchi would not even make it home. I would immediately open my box and eat it with my fingers. It is one of the most nutrient and enzyme rich foods, rich in heritage and flavor. Eat to your health!

We celebrated the summer solstice this year in a very special way and I am so glad to share the bounty of our labor with you today. We spent a day with friends partaking in a Native American style sweat lodge, an experience to cleanse the body, mind and spirit, followed by a Solstice butcher. The chickens brought to you today are fresh and sacred, as only a Solstice day chicken can be :) Another special note about today's chickens: these are the first chickens finished on our very new and exciting all Washington grown and milled Organic Scratch & Peck whole grain chicken feed. We are so happy to take one more step toward sustainability by purchasing our feed directly from a small mill in Bellingham!

You may notice a couple new shades of egg, as well, as we are now home to ten more year-old laying hens that we bartered some of our great new feed for. The barter system is alive and well and never fails to make me thankful to live in a family-farming community!

Before you open that carton of eggs for breakfast tomorrow, take a minute to chop a few of your garlic scapes (flowers of the garlic plant) into 1/2 inch sections and cook them in a tablespoon of oil or butter on med-high heat for about three minutes. Now, scramble up a couple of those cackleberries with some salt and pepper and cook them in the same pan with the scapes. Serve with sprouted grain bagels and goat cheese, and make extra- I am coming over for breakfast!

Rainbow chard has endless applications from smoothies to soup and salad just to name a few. I suppose you know what to do with the cherries! These are from our good friends and Farmers' Market buddies Calhoun Family Farm in Wapato, Wa. All of the canned fruits that I do not grow here at Coffee Creek comes from them, as they grow the tastiest, juiciest tree fruits around!

I have also included a small packet of our very own Scarlet Runner Bean seeds for your garden. These are a fun and beautiful plant that loves to wind it's way up, up, up a pole with dark green foliage and bright red flowers that turn from a great green bean into a marvelous dry bean, depending upon when you want to harvest your bounty. A teepee of Scarlet Runner Beans is a great addition to any garden- for show and for food!

Sunny Summer Blessings from Coffee Creek!