Here's to the Moms

Hey everyone.  Alex wrote up a little something in honor of Mother's Day:

On this week of Mother's day, it gives us the opportune time to honor the sweetest, kindest, most selfless mother in the world: Raquel Weiser. If it wasn't for her loving support and hard work, Weiser Family Farms would not be here today. She's absolutely the backbone of Weiser Family Farms. She is only 4' 10", always wears a smile and talks with a quiet voice.  But she's still tough as nails. No one works harder then her. She leads by example. She's like the Energizer bunny; always keeping busy from pulling weeds, making transplants, feeding us(she's a great cook), working farmers' markets.  She is always there when you need her and willing to do whatever is needed to help. If she was tall enough to drive the tractor she probably would. We all love and appreciate you Mom.  
Happy Mother's Day everyone!


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Getting Ready for Melons

It was just last week when we moved our clocks up one hour for daylight savings time. For many of us, that is a sure sign that Spring has sprung.   For me, however, I know Spring is upon us when our first melon transplants are ready for planting.  We formulate all kinds of plans during the Winter months.  Nothing is on the line so you feel free to think in a stress free environment. But then the days start getting longer and the plants demand satisfaction.  You have no choice but to kick it into gear.  It would be easy enough if you could just prep the bed and plop the plants into place but it’s never that easy.  This year is a prime example.  We’d planned on planting this week but the ground was a bit too wet to work.  We want a nice fluffy bed and the moisture just wasn’t right to make that happen.  The transplants arrived from the nursery at the prescribed time so we had to find a safe place for them, a place where they can acclimate to their new growing environment and where we can conveniently keep them watered. By the time you read this, the beds will be ready to go and the transplants will hopefully be in good shape.  They’ve been in their tray cells for longer than the expected time so root bounding is always a concern.  Now, we just have to catch a moment between pending storm fronts to get the melons properly in the ground.  The expression, “timing is everything” never seemed more appropriate.   Yeah, things can get a bit hectic in Springtime but come Summer, the rewards will be sweet...literally.


Why-Plant-Yellow Beets-In-Your-Garden Cake (Or you can let us do it for you)

Anybody can do a carrot cake or zucchini bread!  Be unique, blaze your own trails!  Try out this recipe that is available in the Penzey's Spice Spring 2011 catalog.  Don't worry if you didn't plant any yellow beets in your garden, we have plenty for you!

From Penzey's Spice Spring 2011 catalog


  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground fennel
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 2 3/4 cups Unbleached Flour
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 cups peeled and grated yellow beets (about 4 medium beets)
  • 1 TB orange zest (or 1 tsp minced orange peel rehydrated in 1 TB water)
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped walnuts

Cream Cheese Frosting (optional):

  • 8 oz low fat cream cheese (Neufchậtel), room temperature
  • 4 oz regular cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted


Preheat oven to 350°.  Grease or spray two 8-9 inch round cake pans with vegetable oil spray, line the bottoms with parchment or waxed paper and set aside.

In a mixing bowl, stir together all of the dry ingredients.  In a separate mixing bowl, using a hand mixer on medium speed (stand mixers will overbeat this cake), beat together the eggs, egg white and sugars until creamy and somewhat thickened. Add the oil in a stream until completely incorporated.  Sprinkle half of the dry ingredients over the mixture and fold in gently.  Repeat with the remaining dry ingredients.  Finally, fold in the beets, orange zest and walnuts.

Divide the batter between the cake pans, smoothing the tops.  Bake at 350° for 20 minutes and then rotate the pans for even baking.  Bake for 10-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out almost clean, with only dry crumbs sticking.  Smaller cake pans take a bit longer than larger ones.  Cool for 10 minutes in the pans and then remove the cakes by turning the pans out over a rack.  Remove the parchment paper.  Flip the cakes and continue to cool for at least 2 hours before frosting.

For the frosting: Beat together the cream cheeses and vanilla.  Gradually add the powered sugar and mix until creamy.  The longer you mix, the thinner the frosting, so decide ahead of time how thick you want your frosting.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Baking Time: 30-40 minutes

Serves: 12-16

Nutritional Information: Servings 16; Serving Size 1 piece (114g); Calories 360; Calories from fat 140; Total fat 16g; Cholesterol 50 mg; Sodium 270 mg; Carbohydrates 51 g; Dietary Fiber 2 g. 


Screening of the Documentary Ingredients

Hey everyone.

We wanted to let you all know about a fun event coming up:

Slow Foods presents: Screening of the documentary Ingredients and Discussion


Immediately following the screening will be a panel discussion among Alex Weiser (Weiser Family Farms), Felicia Friesema (L.A. Weekly), and Martha Rose Shulman (author, cofounder of the Venice Cooking School, andNew York Times contributor), moderated by Lisa Lucas Talbot (coleader of Slow Food Los Angeles and regional governor for Slow Food USA).

When: Thursday, March 10, 2011 beginning at 7:30pm
Where: The Aero Theatre, 1328 Montana Avenue, Santa Monica
Cost: Tickets range from $7.00 to $11.00 and are available online or at the Aero Theatre box office.