September 5-7 2022 – Popcorn dance!

The start of the school year is a very exciting time, but sometimes it can be scary and hard as well – moving to a new school, unfamiliar educational challenges, trying to find your place in a group of kids you don’t know (yet)…..This takes time, and trust, and knowing that you need lots of patience and hope for the “new” to soon become familiar and wonderful.

This week’s Newsletter is devoted to that hard, shrunken corn that you received in your box (or will receive in the coming weeks), the popcorn that proves that if you give even the hardest, most rigid clench a little warmth, patience and trust, it will bounce and burst and find its very own inner softness as well.

Traditionally, the end of each summer heralds the popcorn season. Over the next few weeks, you will be receiving smaller and stiffer corn cobs than usual. Don’t toss them out figuring Chubeza’s crop went bad this week. These are actually rare, delectable treats. It’s popcorn!

To celebrate this joyous corn creation, we are proud to present our traditional Popcorn Newsletter. Settle back in your chairs and enjoy the show!

Back around 3500 BC in a cave in North America (somewhere central-west of today’s New Mexico), the guys were hanging out together, glued to the TV of the era, the blazing campfire. As the flames danced and brought joy to their hearts, they had to nosh on something. But for reasons that remain shrouded in mystery, they somehow did not polish off everything from their plates. Remains of that late-night-nosh were discovered over 5000 years later by archaeologists in 1948, in what became known as world’s oldest popcorn. (It still looked quite crunchy and yummy, but a tad too stale to nibble on.)

The popcorn is indeed a special species of corn, small and hard. They were seeded in March along with the first round of corn, but after the plants grew dark red-bearded cobs, we cut off their water and allowed the cobs, smaller than the sweet corn variety, to fully mature and dry on the stalk. Last week we picked the dry, hard cobs and stored them in our warehouse for further drying and hardening. How wonderful to munch on food that bears a history of thousands of years of noshing!

Popcorn comes in many colors and forms. Here are a few of them:

A particularly cute type is strawberry popcorn, which looks like this:

Native Americans used popcorn even before they discovered the corn we know and love so well. They probably fell onto popcorn by chance, as some random kernel rolled into the fire and suddenly popped. This surely led to attempts to reenact the wonder, and later to make it an institution. In ancient times, they would roast the popcorn by heating the cobs over a direct flame or in a pit in the ground filled with sand and heated to a high temperature. The cobs were placed into the pit whole, and the kernels would pop on the cob, wrapped in its sheaf and protected from the sand. Prehistoric cooks also made special utensils to roast this snack, clay pots with feet to place atop the fire.

Primeval Americans used the popcorn not only as nosh. They made soup and beer out of it, and used popcorn as a decoration in ritual ceremonies as well as for jewelry and head ornaments. Tlaloc, the Aztec God of Rain and Fertility, was adorned with popcorn-string necklaces, and the God of Water and Protector of Fishermen would receive an offering of “hailstones” made from popcorn. Europeans who arrived ashore were also welcomed with gifts of popcorn necklaces, and to this day there are those who decorate their Christmas trees with fresh, aromatic popcorn.

One modern, non-conventional popcorn-based attempt—which ultimately failed—was to use popcorn as an ecological, biodegradable substitute for Styrofoam packing material. You must admit that this is a very captivating idea, yet sadly the popcorn’s natural appeal attracted insects and other pests and organisms to the party. The popcorn completely lost its beneficial packing qualities when wet, and was prone to flammability. Alas.

Popcorn, or in its scientific name, Zea mays averta, is a subspecies of flint corn. Flint corn got its name from its hard-as-rock shell, one of the required components for popping. Also required are a proper level of humidity and a high level of starch within the kernel. Due to the kernel’s hard shell, when it’s heated, the moisture locked inside turns to steam and the pressure builds up. The starch inside the kernel gelatinizes and becomes soft and pliable. The pressure continues to mount until reaching the breaking point of the hull:  the steam forcefully explodes, exposing the soft starch. The starch expands and dries rapidly to become the dry, crispy, puffy foam we call popcorn.

Watch this movie demonstrating the process in very dramatic slo-mo

Some Tips:

– For the foam to dry quickly, place the kernels in a pot in a thin layer to create crispy popcorn that will not reabsorb the moisture from the pot.

– FYI, popped popcorn kernels expand exponentially beyond their original size. Two tablespoons of raw popcorn kernels produce 2 ½ cups of the popped product!

– In its natural form, popcorn is an excellent choice for a healthy snack. Air-popped popcorn is naturally high in dietary fiber, low in calories and fat, and is both sodium and sugar free. This, of course, relates to clean, fresh popcorn, minus the addition of butter and oil, salt or caramel that transform it from a handsome prince to a scary toad.

Storage: Popcorn kernels might look tough, but they won’t stay that way unless you treat them properly. Storing popcorn in the fridge may dry it out or make it too moist to allow popping. Best to keep popcorn kernels in a dry, dark cupboard away from heat, moisture and light. It is advisable to separate the kernels from the cob and store in sealed jar, ceramic container or sealed tin.

Here is how you do it, starring: Chubeza Popcorn as himself, AND Talia’s hands, the hands which rock the Chubeza website. (Talia doubles as our website-wizard…)

Making quality popcorn is an art in itself. The quality and quantity of the popping depends on the rate at which the kernels are heated. If heated too quickly, they’ll explode before the starch in the center of the kernel can fully gelatinize, leading to half-popped kernels with hard centers (formerly the hull). The tip of the kernel, where it attached to the cob, is more sensitive than the rest of the hull. Heating too slowly will crack the tip and allow steam to escape, preventing the build-up of pressure and the ultimate popping. In the past, making popcorn in a pot was a task that required training, specialization, and great skill. In today’s era of the microwave and automatic popcorn-popper, everything is so much simpler, but still it’s a good idea to put aside a few kernels and try the old-fashioned popping method of yesteryear.

Popping Instructions:

In microwave: Place small quantity of kernels (approximately 2 T) into a paper bag you received in your box (make sure it’s dry and not torn), and fold the edge of bag to seal. (At last: a way to re-use those paper bags!) Set timer for 2-3 minutes, and listen carefully. After a few seconds the kernels will start popping loudly, setting the bag into a lively, throbbing rumba. When 3 seconds without any popping have elapsed, remove paper bag from the microwave. Caution! It’s hot. Make a small opening for ventilation; allow steam to escape, and then cool. Add the seasoning of your choice and nosh away.

In a pot: (from the website of Kibbutz Sha’ar Hagolan)

You will need: Popcorn. A pot. Oil.

We all know the black and sooty telltale spots shamefully lining the pots, reminding us of unsuccessful popcorn, or the sad “old maids,” the un-popped kernels that will never receive another chance.

Here’s how to avoid these embarrassing failures, step by step:

The Pot: Use a wide, tall pot so the kernels have room to expand.

The rule is 3 T oil for each ½ – ¾ cup of popcorn. The oil should cover the bottom of the pot and coat each kernel. (You can combine oil and butter, if desired.)
Step 1: Pour the oil and wait a bit till it warms up. (Can use one or two kernels to test.) When oil-bubbles form around kernel, it’s time to start.
Question: Should we toss the kernels?
A: In the beginning of the process, you can give the pan a little shake to arrange the kernels in one layer and for the oil to cover.
Step 2: Leave the kernels on medium heat. When you start hearing the first to pop, lower the flame.
(Babysitter: Keep an eye on them. This is no time to check your email.)
Listen to the sound of the popping kernels. When the popping diminishes, it’s time to turn off the flame. Do not open the pot till you hear the silence of the all-popped popcorn.

To all kids in the Chubeza Family who are starting First Grade this year, and those who are moving up to Junior High or High School, we wish you – and all new students – years of wonder and fascination, of friendship and fun and happiness!

And to our Dror, who together with his wife Naomi are escorting their daughter to the chupah this week, we are so excited and happy for you!!

And now, a message from the Chuzbeza Family to Bat Ami and Yisrael: A loving mazal tov to you on the occasion of the Bat Mitzvah of Talia Sorek-Danczinger. May Talia be blessed with happiness, good health and the joy of reaching her dreams!

Wishing a good week to all! Enjoy the gentle autumn breezes that are now in the air…

Alon, Bat-Ami, Dror and the entire Chubeza team

___________________________________________________ 

WHAT’S IN THIS WEEK’S BOXES?

Monday: Red bell peppers/Ramiro (long) sweet red peppers, onions, parsley/coriander, sweet corn, okra/Thai lubia, eggplant, butternut squash/zucchini, green soy (edamame), tomatoes, cucumbers, head of lettuce/”baby” lettuce mix.

Large box, in addition: Slice of pumpkin/cherry tomatoes, sweet potatoes/potatoes, garlic/chili peppers/popcorn.

FRUIT BOXES: Small boxes: Apples, mangos, grapes, pomegranate. Large boxes: Greater quantities of all of the above, plus peaches/red plums/European plums.

Wednesday: Red bell peppers/Ramiro (long) sweet red peppers, onions, parsley/coriander, sweet corn, Thai lubia, eggplant/cherry tomatoes, butternut squash/zucchini/chili peppers, green soy (edamame), tomatoes, cucumbers, head of lettuce/”baby” lettuce mix.

Large box, in addition: Slice of pumpkin, sweet potatoes/okra, garlic/popcorn.

FRUIT BOXES: Small boxes: Apples, mangos, grapes, pomegranate. Large boxes: Greater quantities of all of the above, plus pears.

September 25th-27th 2017 – Pop Goes Our Special Treat!

This week, deliveries are as usual, but don’t forget the rest of this festive month:

– The week of Sukkot: Wednesday delivery will be moved to Tuesday, October 3, and the order system will close (for that Tuesday) on Monday, October 2 at 9:00 am.

– During Chol HaMoed Sukkot: There will be no deliveries, thus you will not be receiving boxes on Monday and Wednesday, the 9th and 11th of October

Back to normal schedule on the week after Sukkot and Simchat Torah.

If you wish to increase your vegetable boxes before the holidays, please advise as soon as possible.

—–

Open Day at Chubeza
In keeping with our twice-yearly tradition, we invite you for a Chol HaMoed “pilgrimage” to Chubeza to celebrate our Open Day.
The Sukkot Open Day will take place on Tuesday, October 10, the 20th of Tishrei (fifth day of Chol HaMoed), between 12:00-5:00 PM. The Open Day gives us a chance to meet, tour the field, and nibble on vegetables and other delicacies. Children have their own tailor-made tours designed for little feet and curious minds, plus special activities and a vast space to run around and loosen up. (So can the adults…)

Driving instructions are on our website under “Contact Us.” Please make sure you check this before heading our way.

Wishing you a Chag Sameach and Shana Tova. We look forward to seeing you all!

_________________________

Pop Goes Our Special Treat!

As last week’s newsletter was dedicated to the New Year blessings, our Popcorn Newsletter was slightly delayed. But get ready—- here it comes:

Stop!! Before you’re so overcome with sorrow over the shriveled, hard-as-rock corn in your box this week that you thrust the kernels in a pot to be cooked forever and ever, or crack your crowns while attempting to bite into them, read on for the True Story Behind the Kernels!

Traditionally, the end of each summer heralds the popcorn season. Over the next few weeks, you will be receiving smaller and stiffer corn cobs than usual. Don’t toss them out figuring Chubeza’s crop went bad this week. These are actually rare, delectable treats. It’s popcorn!

To celebrate this joyous corn creation, we are proud to present our traditional Popcorn Newsletter. Settle back in your chairs and enjoy the show!

Back around 3500 BC in a cave in North America (somewhere central-west of today’s New Mexico), the guys were hanging out together, glued to the TV of the era, the blazing campfire. As the flames danced and brought joy to their hearts, they had to nosh on something. But for reasons that remain shrouded in mystery, they somehow did not polish off everything from their plates. Remains of that late-night-nosh were discovered over 5000 years later by archaeologists in 1948, in what became known as world’s oldest popcorn. (It still looked quite crunchy and yummy, but a tad too stale to nibble on.)

The popcorn is indeed a special species of corn, small and hard. They were seeded in March along with the first round of corn, but after the plants grew dark red-bearded cobs, we cut off their water and allowed the cobs, smaller than the sweet corn variety, to fully mature and dry on the stalk. Last week we picked the dry, hard cobs and stored them in our warehouse for further drying and hardening. How wonderful to munch on food that bears a history of thousands of years of noshing!

Popcorn comes in many colors and forms. Here are a few of them:

A particularly cute type is strawberry popcorn, which looks like this:

Native Americans used popcorn even before they discovered the corn we know and love so well. They probably fell onto popcorn by chance, as some random kernel rolled into the fire and suddenly popped. This surely led to attempts to reenact the wonder, and later to make it an institution. In ancient times, they would roast the popcorn by heating the cobs over a direct flame or in a pit in the ground filled with sand and heated to a high temperature. The cobs were placed into the pit whole, and the kernels would pop on the cob, wrapped in its sheaf and protected from the sand. Prehistoric cooks also made special utensils to roast this snack, clay pots with feet to place atop the fire.

Primeval Americans used the popcorn not only as nosh. They made soup and beer out of it, and used popcorn as a decoration in ritual ceremonies as well as for jewelry and head ornaments. Tlaloc, the Aztec God of Rain and Fertility, was adorned with popcorn-string necklaces, and the God of Water and Protector of Fishermen would receive an offering of “hailstones” made from popcorn. Europeans who arrived ashore were also welcomed with gifts of popcorn necklaces, and to this day there are those who decorate their Christmas trees with fresh, aromatic popcorn.

One modern, non-conventional popcorn-based attempt—which ultimately failed—was to use popcorn as an ecological, biodegradable substitute for Styrofoam packing material. You must admit that this is a very captivating idea, yet sadly the popcorn’s natural appeal attracted insects and other pests and organisms to the party. The popcorn completely lost its beneficial packing qualities when wet, and was prone to flammability. Alas.

Popcorn, or in its scientific name, Zea mays averta, is a subspecies of flint corn. Flint corn got its name from its hard-as-rock shell, one of the required components for popping. Also required are a proper level of humidity and a high level of starch within the kernel. Due to the kernel’s hard shell, when it’s heated, the moisture locked inside turns to steam and the pressure builds up. The starch inside the kernel gelatinizes and becomes soft and pliable. The pressure continues to mount until reaching the breaking point of the hull:  the steam forcefully explodes, exposing the soft starch. The starch expands and dries rapidly to become the dry, crispy, puffy foam we call popcorn.

Watch this movie demonstrating the process in very dramatic slo-mo

Some Tips:

– For the foam to dry quickly, place the kernels in a pot in a thin layer to create crispy popcorn that will not reabsorb the moisture from the pot.

– FYI, popped popcorn kernels expand exponentially beyond their original size. Two tablespoons of raw popcorn kernels produce 2 ½ cups of the popped product!

– In its natural form, popcorn is an excellent choice for a healthy snack. Air-popped popcorn is naturally high in dietary fiber, low in calories and fat, and is both sodium and sugar free. This, of course, relates to clean, fresh popcorn, minus the addition of butter and oil, salt or caramel that transform it from a handsome prince to a scary toad.

Storage: Popcorn kernels might look tough, but they won’t stay that way unless you treat them properly. Storing popcorn in the fridge may dry it out or make it too moist to allow popping. Best to keep popcorn kernels in a dry, dark cupboard away from heat, moisture and light. It is advisable to separate the kernels from the cob and store in sealed jar, ceramic container or sealed tin.

Here is how you do it, starring: Chubeza Popcorn as himself, AND Talia’s hands, the hands which rock the Chubeza website. (Talia doubles as our website-wizard…)

Making quality popcorn is an art in itself. The quality and quantity of the popping depends on the rate at which the kernels are heated. If heated too quickly, they’ll explode before the starch in the center of the kernel can fully gelatinize, leading to half-popped kernels with hard centers (formerly the hull). The tip of the kernel, where it attached to the cob, is more sensitive than the rest of the hull. Heating too slowly will crack the tip and allow steam to escape, preventing the build-up of pressure and the ultimate popping. In the past, making popcorn in a pot was a task that required training, specialization, and great skill. In today’s era of the microwave and automatic popcorn-popper, everything is so much simpler, but still it’s a good idea to put aside a few kernels and try the old-fashioned popping method of yesteryear.

Popping Instructions:

In microwave: Place small quantity of kernels (approximately 2 T) into a paper bag you received in your box (make sure it’s dry and not torn), and fold the edge of bag to seal. (At last: a way to re-use those paper bags!) Set timer for 2-3 minutes, and listen carefully. After a few seconds the kernels will start popping loudly, setting the bag into a lively, throbbing rumba. When 3 seconds without any popping have elapsed, remove paper bag from the microwave. Caution! It’s hot. Make a small opening for ventilation; allow steam to escape, and then cool. Add the seasoning of your choice and nosh away.

In a pot: (from the website of Kibbutz Sha’ar Hagolan)

You will need: Popcorn. A pot. Oil.

We all know the black and sooty telltale spots shamefully lining the pots, reminding us of unsuccessful popcorn, or the sad “old maids,” the un-popped kernels that will never receive another chance.

Here’s how to avoid these embarrassing failures, step by step:

The Pot: Use a wide, tall pot so the kernels have room to expand.

The rule is 3 T oil for each ½ – ¾ cup of popcorn. The oil should cover the bottom of the pot and coat each kernel. (You can combine oil and butter, if desired.)
Step 1: Pour the oil and wait a bit till it warms up. (Can use one or two kernels to test.) When oil-bubbles form around kernel, it’s time to start.
Question: Should we toss the kernels?
A: In the beginning of the process, you can give the pan a little shake to arrange the kernels in one layer and for the oil to cover.
Step 2: Leave the kernels on medium heat. When you start hearing the first to pop, lower the flame.
(Babysitter: Keep an eye on them. This is no time to check your email.)
Listen to the sound of the popping kernels. When the popping diminishes, it’s time to turn off the flame. Do not open the pot till you hear the silence of the all-popped popcorn.

Best wishes to all for a great summer-end and a wonderful New Year,

Alon, Bat Ami, Dror, Yochai and the Chubeza team

_________________________

WHAT’S IN THIS WEEK’S BOXES?

Monday: Parsley/coriander, red bell peppers, scallions/ garlic, cucumbers, lettuce, tomatoes, yard-long beans, potatoes/small potatoes, slice of pumpkin, sweet potatoes, onions. Special gift: popcorn.

Large box, in addition: Eggplant, leeks, okra.

Wednesday: Eggplant/carrots, scallions/leeks, coriander, garlic/okra/yard-long beans, cucumbers, tomatoes, potatoes/small potatoes, slice of pumpkin, sweet potatoes, onions, New Zealand spinach. Special gift: popcorn.

Large box, in addition: Parsley, red bell peppers, lettuce/Swiss chard.

And there’s more! You can add to your basket a wide, delectable range of additional products from fine small producers: flour, sprouts, honey, dates, almonds, garbanzo beans, crackers, probiotic foods, dried fruits and leathers, olive oil, bakery products, granola, natural juices, cider and jams, apple vinegar, dates silan and healthy snacks, ground coffee, tachini, honey candy and goat dairy too! You can learn more about each producer on the Chubeza website. On our order system there’s a detailed listing of the products and their cost, you can make an order online now!

Aley Chubeza #303, August 22nd-24th 2016

The New Year is approaching, abounding with special treats!

shana bagina

This week we begin distributing Ilana and Davidi’s Luach Shana BaGina

It is a Hebrew/English/agricultural/pictorial calendar, unique and beautifully made by Ilana and Davidi, old friends who are gardeners and collectors, cooks and talented dreamers. The calendar walks you through the year, describing in pictures and words the annual cycle in your home garden and surrounding nature.

Further details and a sneak peak of the calendar are available at their website.

Order the calendars via our order system (under the “Chubeza Vegetables” category).
Judging from last year, make your order fast before these beauties disappear!

____________________________

dora calendar

Another calendar we are happy to share with you for the second year in a row is “עם טעם” (“Tasteful”), a beautiful calendar with photos of the fruit of Israel alongside healthy, tasty vegan recipes, in sequence with the produce of the season.

dora bookThis year, the calendar producers are introducing a special new product: a children’s cookbook with 10 healthy and vegan recipes woven into a lovely story about a girl named Chaya and her family. The very detailed and simple explanations, enhanced by charming illustrations, make cooking easy and fun for the kids.

The calendar and book are a combined effort by several very gifted artists, led by the exceptionally talented sisters Dora and Mara Zinnigrad, both friends of Chubeza from a young age. These two were joined by Bat Chen, Tamar and Ma’ayan, and together they hope to help more people transform their kitchens to happier and healthier environments, proving that healthy cooking is simple and fun for the whole family.

Dora and her friends are funding this project through Jumpstarter, and this is the link to their project. Take a look and lend your support!

  ____________________________

minhatReminder: only two weeks remain for the incredible August sale of Arik and Asaf, producers (grinders) of the high-quality “Minchat Ha’Aretz” flour:
Wheat flour (70% whole wheat) – 8 NIS
Spelt flour (70% whole grain) – only 15 NIS
Whole rye flour – only 12 NIS

Don’t let the summer heat blind you from this super sale! At these prices, your baked goods will be all the tastier! Time to bake some bread and spread it with your homemade pesto………

Bon Appetit!

________________________________

POP GOES THE CORN!

Stop!! Before you’re so overcome with sorrow over the shriveled, hard-as-rock corn in your box this week that you thrust the kernels in a pot to be cooked forever and ever, or crack your crowns while attempting to bite into them, read on for the True Story Behind the Kernels!

Traditionally, the end of each summer heralds the popcorn season. Over the next few weeks, you will be receiving smaller and stiffer corn cobs than usual. Don’t toss them out figuring Chubeza’s crop went bad this week. These are actually rare, delectable treats. It’s popcorn!

In honor of this joyous corn creation, we annually renew The Popcorn Newsletter. Settle back in your chairs and enjoy the show!

Back around 3500 BC in a cave in North America (somewhere central-west of today’s New Mexico), the guys were hanging out together, glued to the TV of the era, the blazing campfire. As the flames danced and brought joy to their hearts, they had to nosh on something. But for reasons that remain shrouded in mystery, they somehow did not polish off everything from their plates. Remains of that late-night-nosh were discovered over 5000 years later by archaeologists in 1948, in what became known as world’s oldest popcorn. (It still looked quite crunchy and yummy, but a tad too stale to nibble on.)

The popcorn is indeed a special species of corn. They were seeded in March along with the first round of corn, but after the plants grew dark red-bearded cobs, we cut off their water and allowed the cobs, smaller than the sweet corn variety, to fully mature and dry on the stalk. Last week we picked the dry, hard cobs and stored them in our warehouse for further drying and hardening. How wonderful to munch on food that bears a history of thousands of years of noshing!

Popcorn comes in many colors and forms. Here are a few of them:

An especially cute type is strawberry popcorn, which looks like this:

Native Americans used popcorn even before they discovered the corn we know and love so well. They probably fell onto popcorn by chance, as some random kernel rolled into the fire and suddenly popped. This surely led to attempts to reenact the wonder, and later to make it an institution. In ancient times, they would roast the popcorn by heating the cobs over direct flame or in a pit in the ground filled with sand and heated to a high temperature. The cobs were placed into the pit whole, and the kernels would pop on the cob, wrapped in its sheaf and protected from the sand. Prehistoric cooks also made special utensils to roast this snack, clay pots with feet to place atop the fire.

Primeval Americans used the popcorn not only as nosh. They made soup and beer out of it, and it was used as a decoration in ritual ceremonies, as well as for jewelry and head ornaments. Tlaloc, the Aztec god of rain and fertility, was adorned with popcorn-string necklaces, and the God of Water and Protector of Fishermen would receive an offering of “hailstones” made from popcorn. Europeans who arrived ashore were also welcomed with gifts of popcorn necklaces, and to this day there are those who decorate their Christmas trees with fresh, aromatic popcorn.

One modern, non-conventional popcorn-based attempt—which ultimately failed—was to use popcorn as an ecological, biodegradable substitute for Styrofoam packing material. You must admit that this is a very captivating idea, yet sadly the popcorn’s natural appeal attracted insects and other pests and organisms to the party. The popcorn completely lost its beneficial packing qualities when wet, and was prone to flammability. Alas.

Popcorn, or in its scientific name, Zea mays averta, is a subspecies of flint corn. Flint corn got its name from its hard-as-rock shell, one of the required components for popping. Also required are a proper level of humidity and a high level of starch within the kernel. Due to the kernel’s hard shell, when it’s heated, the moisture locked inside turns to steam and the pressure builds up. The starch inside the kernel gelatinizes and becomes soft and pliable. The pressure continues to mount until reaching the breaking point of the hull:  The steam forcefully explodes, exposing the soft starch. The starch expands and dries rapidly to become the dry, crispy, puffy foam we call popcorn.

Some Tips:

– For the foam to dry quickly, place the kernels in a pot in a thin layer to create crispy popcorn that will not reabsorb the moisture from the pot.

– FYI, popped popcorn kernels expand exponentially beyond their original size. Two tablespoons of raw popcorn kernels produce 2 ½ cups of the popped product!

– In its natural form, popcorn is an excellent choice for a healthy snack. Air-popped popcorn is naturally high in dietary fiber, low in calories and fat, and is both sodium and sugar free. This, of course, relates to clean, fresh popcorn, minus the addition of butter and oil, salt or caramel that transform it from a handsome prince to a scary toad.

Storage: Popcorn kernels might look tough, but they won’t stay that way unless you treat them properly. Storing popcorn in the fridge may dry it out or make it too moist to allow popping. Best to keep popcorn kernels in a dry, dark cupboard away from heat, moisture and light.

It is advisable to separate the kernels from cob and store in sealed jar, ceramic container or sealed tin. Here is how you do it:

Making quality popcorn is an art in itself. The quality and quantity of the popping depends on the rate at which the kernels are heated. If heated too quickly, they’ll explode before the starch in the center of the kernel can fully gelatinize, leading to half-popped kernels with hard centers (what was the hull). The tip of the kernel, where it attached to the cob, is more sensitive than the rest of the hull. Heating too slowly will crack the tip and allow steam to escape, preventing the build-up of pressure and the ultimate popping. In the past, making popcorn in a pot was a task that required training, specialization, and great skill. In today’s era of the microwave and automatic popcorn-popper, everything is so much simpler, but still it’s a good idea to put aside a few kernels and try the old-fashioned popping method of yesteryear.

Popping Instructions:

In microwave: Place small quantity of kernels (approximately 2 T) into a paper bag you received in your box (make sure it’s dry and not torn), and fold the edge of bag to seal. (At last: a way to re-use those paper bags!) Set timer for 2-3 minutes, and listen carefully. After a few seconds the kernels will start popping loudly, setting the bag into a lively, throbbing dance. When 3 seconds without any popping have elapsed, remove paper bag from the microwave. Caution! It’s hot. Make a small opening for ventilation; allow steam to escape, and then cool. Add the seasoning of your choice and nosh away.

In a pot: (from the website of Kibbutz Sha’ar Hagolan)

 

You will need: Popcorn. A pot. Oil.

We all know the black and sooty telltale spots shamefully lining the pots, reminding us of unsuccessful popcorn, or the sad “old maids,” the un-popped kernels that will never receive another chance.

Here’s how to avoid these embarrassing failures, step by step:

The Pot: Use a wide, tall pot so the kernels have room to expand.

The rule is 3 T oil for each ½ – ¾ cup of popcorn. The oil should cover the bottom of the pot and coat each kernel. (You can combine oil and butter, if desired.)
Step 1: Pour the oil and wait a bit till it warms up. (Can use one or two kernels to test.) When oil-bubbles form around kernel, it’s time to start.
Question: Should we toss the kernels?
A: In the beginning of the process, you can give the pan a little shake to arrange the kernels in one layer and for the oil to cover.
Step 2: Leave the kernels on medium heat. When you start hearing the first to pop, lower the flame.
(Babysitter: Keep an eye on them. This is no time to check your email.)
Listen to the sound of the popping kernels. When the popping diminishes, it’s time to turn off the flame. Do not open the pot till you hear the silence of the all-popped popcorn.

Wishing us all a great week of summer,

Alon, Bat Ami, Dror, Yochai and the Chubeza team

________________________________

WHAT’S IN THIS WEEK’S BOXES?

Cucumbers are now in short supply at Chubeza, along with other organic growers at this hot time of year. Unable to purchase any from other growers, we’ve placed either cucumbers or peppers in this week’s boxes. Hopefully this shortage will soon end!

Monday: New Zealand spinach/Swiss chard, coriander/nana mint/ basil, tomatoes, Thai lubia/ lubia/okra, cherry tomatoes, eggplant, Provence pumpkin slice, cucumbers/bell peppers, corn, popcorn, onions.

Large box, in addition: Butternut squash, parsley, leeks/scallions

Wednesday: New Zealand spinach/Swiss chard/basil, coriander/dill, tomatoes, Thai lubia/ lubia/okra, cherry tomatoes, eggplant, butternut squash/potatoes, bell peppers, popcorn, onions, leeks/scallions.

Large box, in addition: Provence pumpkin slice, parsley, corn.

 

The eggplants are in their high season now, Margie sent me this link – The Simplest Way to Turn an Eggplant into Dinner.

Enjoy!

And there’s more! You can add to your basket a wide, delectable range of additional products from fine small producers: flour, fruits, honey, dates, almonds, garbanzo beans, crackers, probiotic foods, dried fruits and leathers, olive oil, bakery products, apple juice, cider and jams and goat dairy too! You can learn more about each producer on the Chubeza website. On our order system there’s a detailed listing of the products and their cost, you can make an order online now!

Aley Chubeza #259, August 31st-September 2nd 2015

At the beginning of this week we will be charging your cards for the last week of July and the month of August and endeavor to have the billing updated by the end of the week. 

 You may view your billing history in our Internet-based order system. It’s easy. Simply click the tab “דוח הזמנות ותשלומים” where the history of your payments and purchases is clearly displayed. Please make sure the bill is correct, or let us know of any necessary revisions. At the bottom of the bill, the words סה”כ לתשלום: 0 (total due: 0) should appear. If there is any number other than zero, this means we were unable to bill your card and would appreciate your contacting us. We always have our hands full, and we depend on you to inform us. Our thanks!

Reminder: The billing is two-part: one bill for vegetables &  fruits you purchased over the past month (the produce that does not include VAT. The title of that bill is “תוצרת אורגנית”, organic produce). The second part is the bill for delivery and other purchases. (This bill does include VAT. The title of the bill is “delivery and other products.”)

______________________________________

Preparing for the holidays…

Changes in delivery dates over the holidays:
There will be no deliveries to those of you scheduled to receive a box on Monday, September 14th. However, deliveries in Modi’in, Jerusalem, Gush Etzion and South Tel Aviv will be made on Thursday, September 17th. You will soon receive a detailed email regarding the holiday delivery schedule.)

* Wednesday delivery will be moved to Thursday, September 17th and the ordering system will close on Wednesday, September 16th at 9:00.

The of Yom Kippur: Monday delivery as usual (September 21st). Wednesday delivery moves up to Thursday, September 24th and the ordering system will close on Monday,  September 21st at 12:00.

During Chol HaMoed Sukkot, there will be no deliveries, thus you will not be receiving boxes on Monday and Wednesday, the 28th and 30th of September.

On the week after Sukkot and Simchat Torah:

*Monday deliveries move up to Tuesday, October 6th and the ordering system closes on Sunday, October 4th at 9:00.

* Wednesday deliveries as usual (October 7th)

If you wish to increase your vegetable boxes before the holidays, please advise as soon as possible.

Subscribing to our weekly newsletter: The best way to receive messages and updates is via our weekly newsletter, which is published on our website and, in most cases, arrives directly to your email inbox. Those who do not receive the newsletter and wish to do so, please advise.  If you prefer to receive a hard copy along with your box, please notify me.

Open Day at Chubeza
In keeping with our twice-yearly tradition, we invite you for a Chol HaMoed “pilgrimage” to Chubeza to celebrate our Open Day.
The Sukkot Open Day will take place on Thursday, October 1st, the 18th of Tishrei (third day of Chol HaMoed), between 12:00- 5:00pm. The Open Day gives us a chance to meet, tour the field, and nibble on vegetables and other delicacies. Children have their own tailor-made tours, designed for little feet and curious minds, plus special activities and a vast space to run around and loosen up.  (So can the adults…)

Driving instructions are on our website under “Contact Us.” Please make sure you check this before heading our way.

Wishing you a Chag Sameach and Shana Tova from all of us at Chubeza.
We look forward to seeing you all!

____________________________________________________

Hold your horses before you complain about the shriveled, hard-as-rock corn you received this week. Read on for the true story behind the kernels:

Traditionally, the end of each summer heralds the popcorn season. Over the next few weeks, you will be receiving smaller and stiffer corn cobs than usual. Don’t toss them out figuring Chubeza’s crop went bad this week. These are actually rare, delectable treats. It’s popcorn! In honor of this joyous corn creation, we are renewing The Popcorn Newsletter. Sit back in your chairs and enjoy the show!

Back around 3500 BC in a cave in North America (somewhere central-west of today’s New Mexico), the guys were hanging out together, glued to the TV of the era, the blazing campfire. As the flames danced and brought joy to their hearts, they had to nosh on something. But for reasons that remain shrouded in mystery, they somehow did not polish off everything from their plates. Remains of that late-night-nosh were discovered over 5000 years later by archaeologists in 1948, in what became known as world’s oldest popcorn. (It still looked quite crunchy and yummy, but a tad too stale to nibble on.)

The popcorn is indeed a special species of corn. They were seeded in March along with the first round of corn, but after the plants grew dark red-bearded cobs, we cut off their water and allowed the cobs, smaller than the sweet corn variety, to fully mature and dry on the stalk. Last week we picked the dry, hard cobs and stored them in our warehouse for further drying and hardening. How wonderful to munch on food that bears a history of thousands of years of noshing!

Popcorn comes in many colors and forms. Here are a few of them:

An especially cute type is strawberry popcorn, which looks like this:

Native Americans used popcorn even before they discovered the corn we know and love so well. They probably fell onto popcorn by chance, as some random kernel rolled into the fire and suddenly popped. This surely led to attempts to reenact the wonder, and later to make it an institution. In ancient times, they would roast the popcorn by heating the cobs over direct flame or in a pit in the ground filled with sand and heated to a high temperature. The cobs were placed into the pit whole, and the kernels would pop on the cob, wrapped in its sheaf and protected from the sand. Prehistoric cooks also made special utensils to roast this snack, clay pots with feet to place atop the fire.

Primeval Americans used the popcorn not only as nosh. They made soup and beer out of it, and it was used as a decoration in ritual ceremonies, as well as for jewelry and head ornaments. Tlaloc, the Aztec god of rain and fertility, was adorned with popcorn-string necklaces, and the god of water and protector of fishermen would receive an offering of “hailstones” made from popcorn. Europeans who arrived ashore were also welcomed with gifts of popcorn necklaces, and to this day there are those who decorate their Christmas trees with fresh, aromatic popcorn.

One modern, non-conventional popcorn-based attempt—which ultimately failed—was to use popcorn as an ecological, biodegradable substitute for Styrofoam packing material. You must admit that this is a very captivating idea, yet sadly the popcorn’s natural appeal attracted insects and other pests and organisms to the party. The popcorn completely lost its beneficial packing qualities when wet, and was prone to flammability. Alas.

Popcorn, or in its scientific name, Zea mays averta, is a subspecies of flint corn. Flint corn got its name from its hard-as-rock shell, one of the required components for popping. Also required are a proper level of humidity and a high level of starch within the kernel. Due to the kernel’s hard shell, when it’s heated, the moisture locked inside turns to steam and the pressure builds up. The starch inside the kernel gelatinizes and becomes soft and pliable. The pressure continues to mount until reaching the breaking point of the hull:  The steam forcefully explodes, exposing the soft starch. The starch expands and dries rapidly to become the dry, crispy, puffy foam we call popcorn.

Here is film that illustrates the process a very dramatic, slow motion presentation:

Some Tips:

– For the foam to dry quickly, place the kernels in a pot in a thin layer to create crispy popcorn that will not reabsorb the moisture from the pot.

– FYI, popped popcorn kernels expand exponentially beyond their original size. Two tablespoons of raw popcorn kernels produce 2 ½ cups of the popped product!

– In its natural form, popcorn is an excellent choice for a healthy snack. Air-popped popcorn is naturally high in dietary fiber, low in calories and fat, and is both sodium and sugar free. This, of course, relates to clean, fresh popcorn, minus the addition of butter and oil, salt or caramel that transform it from a handsome prince to a scary toad.

– And, please take care of the children: do not allow popcorn to children under 4!

Storage: Popcorn kernels might look tough, but they won’t be if you don’t treat them properly. Storing popcorn in the fridge may dry it or make it too moist to allow popping. Best to keep popcorn kernels in a dry, dark cupboard away from heat, moisture and light.

It is advisable to separate the kernels from cob and store in sealed jar, ceramic container or sealed tin.

Here is a short demonstration of how to best separate the kernels from the cob. (Starring Chubeza popcorn, and the hands of Talya, our website wizard).

Making fine popcorn is an art in itself. The quality and quantity of the popping depends on the rate at which the kernels are heated. If heated too quickly, they’ll explode before the starch in the center of the kernel can fully gelatinize, leading to half-popped kernels with hard centers (what was the hull). The tip of the kernel, where it attached to the cob, is more sensitive than the rest of the hull. Heating too slowly will crack the tip and allow steam to escape, preventing the build-up of pressure and the ultimate popping. In the past, making popcorn in a pot was a task that required training, specialization, and great skill. In today’s microwave era, everything is so much simpler, but still it’s a good idea to put aside a few kernels and try the old-fashioned popping method of yesteryear.

Popping Instructions:

In microwave: Place small quantity of kernels (approximately 2 T) into a paper bag you received in your box (make sure it’s dry and not torn), and fold the edge of bag to seal. (At last: a way to re-use those paper bags!) Set timer for 2-3 minutes, and listen carefully. After a few seconds the kernels will start popping loudly, setting the bag into a lively, throbbing dance. When 3 seconds without any popping have elapsed, remove paper bag from the microwave. Caution! It’s hot. Make a small opening for ventilation; allow steam to escape, and then cool. Add the seasoning of your choice and nosh away.

In a pot: (from the website of Kibbutz Sha’ar Hagolan)

You will need: Popcorn. A pot. Oil.

We all know the black and sooty telltale spots shamefully lining the pots, reminding us of unsuccessful popcorn, or the sad “old maids,” the unpoppod kernels that will never receive another chance.

Here’s how to avoid these embarrassing  failures, step by step.

The Pot:

Use a wide, tall pot so the kernels have room to expand.

The rule is 3 T oil for each ½ – ¾ cup of popcorn. The oil should cover the bottom of the pot and coat each kernel. (You can combine oil and butter, if desired.)
Timetable 1: Pour the oil and wait a bit till it warms up. (Can use one or two kernels to test.) When oil-bubbles form around kernel, it’s time to start.
Question: Should we toss the kernels?
A: In the beginning of the process, you can give the pan a little shake to arrange the kernels in one layer and for the oil to cover.
Timetable 2: Leave the kernels on medium heat. When you start hearing the first to pop, lower the flame.
Babysitter: Keep an eye on them. This is no time to check your email.
Listen to the sound of the popping kernels. When the popping diminishes, it’s time to turn off the flame. Do not open the pot till you hear the silence of the all-popped popcorn.

Wishing us all a great beginning of school year, specifically to Chubeza’s very own first graders: Geffen, Eliyahu and Tamar. May you have years of wonder and joy!

Alon, Bat Ami, Dror, Yochai and the Chubeza team

WHAT’S IN THIS WEEK’S BOXES?

Monday: Eggplant, cilantro/mint (nana)/ parsley, pumpkin/butternut squash, potatoes, tomatoes, corn, scallions/garlic chives, popcorn, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, Thai long beans/ okra.

Large box, in addition: Leeks, red+green bell peppers,/ basil/New Zealand spinach.

Wednesday: potatoes, cucumbers, parsley/cilantro/mint, tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, okra/Thai long beans,  popcorn, pumpkin/butternut squash, corn, scallions, small boxes: eggplants/red bell peppers.

Large box, in addition: green peppers, leeks, basil/New Zealand, eggplants

And there’s more! You can add to your basket a wide, delectable range of additional products from fine small producers: flour, fruits, honey, dates, almonds, garbanzo beans, crackers, probiotic foods, dried fruits and leathers, olive oil, bakery products and goat dairy too! You can learn more about each producer on the Chubeza website. On our order system there’s a detailed listing of the products and their cost, you can make an order online now!

Aley Chubeza #125 – August 20th-22nd 2-12

CORNY NEWS FROM CHUBEZA

Each year I’m a little late in writing about the “different” corn that turns up in your boxes around this time of the year. But today, I’m right on time! Hold your horses before you complain about the shriveled, hard-as-rock corn you received this week. Here’s the explanation:

Traditionally, the end of each summer heralds the popcorn season. Over the next few weeks, you will be receiving smaller and stiffer corn cobs than usual. Don’t toss them out—they are rare, delectable treats. This is popcorn! In honor of the newcomers, we are reposting The Popcorn Newsletter. Enjoy!

 

POP GOES THE POPCORN

The end of the summer always brings the popcorn season, and Chubeza’s ready and jumping to the beat. We’re pleased to warn you that over the coming weeks you will be receiving some rather odd corncobs in your boxes:  remarkably hard, small and bright yellow. But no, this is not a mistake, nor some terrible mutant in growth. Halt in your tracks to the garbage bin to dump this apparent corn-gone-bad. Aha! This isn’t more of our legendary sweet corn, at all. It’s popcorn!

And in its honor, we shall re-run our traditional Popcorn Newsletter. Enjoy your show!

Back around 3500 BC in a cave in North America (somewhere central-west of today’s New Mexico), the guys were hanging out together, glued to the TV of the era, the blazing campfire. As the flames danced and brought joy to their hearts, they had to nosh on something. But for reasons that remain shrouded in mystery, they somehow did not polish off everything from their plates. Remains of that late-night-nosh were discovered over 5000 years later by archaeologists in 1948, in what became known as world’s oldest popcorn. (It still looked quite crunchy and yummy, but a tad too stale to nibble on.)

The popcorn is indeed a special species of corn. They were seeded along with the first round of corn, but after the plants grew dark red-bearded cobs, we cut off their water and allowed the cobs, smaller than the sweet corn variety, to fully mature and dry on the stalk. Last week we picked the dry, hard cobs and stored them in our warehouse for further drying and hardening. How wonderful to munch on food that bears a history of thousands of years of noshing!

Popcorn comes in many colors and forms. Here are a few of them:

An especially cute type is strawberry popcorn, which looks like this:

Native Americans used popcorn even before they discovered the corn we know and love so well. They probably fell onto popcorn by chance, as some random kernel rolled into the fire and suddenly popped. This surely led to attempts to reenact the wonder, and later to make it an institution. In ancient times, they would roast the popcorn by heating the cobs over direct flame or in a pit in the ground filled with sand and heated to a high temperature. The cobs were placed into the pit whole, and the kernels would pop on the cob, wrapped in its sheaf and protected by the sand. Prehistoric cooks also made special utensils to roast this snack, clay pots with feet to place atop the fire.

Primeval Americans used the popcorn not only as nosh. They made soup and beer out of it, and it was used as a decoration in ritual ceremonies, as well as for jewelry and head ornaments. Tlaloc, the Aztec god of rain and fertility, was adorned with popcorn-string necklaces, and the god of water and protector of fishermen would receive an offering of “hailstones” made from popcorn. Europeans who arrived ashore were also welcomed with gifts of popcorn necklaces, and to this day there are those who decorate their Christmas trees with fresh, aromatic popcorn.

One modern, non-conventional popcorn-based attempt—which ultimately failed—was to use popcorn as an ecological, biodegradable substitute for Styrofoam packing material. You must admit that it is a very captivating idea, yet sadly the popcorn’s natural appeal attracted insects and other pests and organisms to the party. The popcorn completely lost its beneficial packing qualities when wet, and was prone to flammability. Alas.

Popcorn, or in its scientific name, Zea mays averta, is a subspecies of flint corn. Flint corn got its name from its hard-as-rock shell, one of the required components for popping. Also required are a proper level of humidity and a high level of starch within the kernel. Due to the kernel’s hard shell, when it’s heated, the moisture locked inside turns to steam and the pressure builds up. The starch inside the kernel gelatinizes and becomes soft and pliable. The pressure continues to mount until reaching the breaking point of the hull:  The steam forcefully explodes, exposing the soft starch. The starch expands and dries rapidly to become the dry, crispy, puffy foam we call popcorn.

Here is film that illustrates the process a very dramatic, slow motion presentation:

– For the foam to dry quickly, place the kernels in a pot in a thin layer to create crispy popcorn that will not reabsorb the moisture from the pot.

– FYI, popped popcorn kernels expand exponentially beyond their original size. Two tablespoons of raw popcorn kernels produce 2 ½ cups of the popped product!

– In its natural form, popcorn is an excellent choice for a healthy snack. Air-popped popcorn is naturally high in dietary fiber, low in calories and fat, and is both sodium and sugar free. This, of course, relates to clean, fresh popcorn, minus the addition of salt, sugar and caramel that transform it from a handsome prince to a scary toad.

– And, please take care of the children: do not allow popcorn to children under 4!

Storage: Popcorn kernels might look tough, but they won’t be if you don’t treat them properly. Storing popcorn in the fridge may dry it or make it too moist to allow popping. Best to keep popcorn kernels in a dry, dark cupboard away from heat, moisture and light.

It is advisable to separate the kernels from cob, and store in sealed jar, ceramic container or sealed tin.

Here is a short demonstration of how to best separate the kernels from the cob. (Starring Chubeza popcorn, and the hands of Talya, our website wizard).

Making fine popcorn is an art in itself. The quality and quantity of the popping depends on the rate at which the kernels are heated. If heated too quickly, they’ll explode before the starch in the center of the kernel can fully gelatinize, leading to half-popped kernels with hard centers (what was the hull). The tip of the kernel, where it attached to the cob, is more sensitive than the rest of the hull. Heating too slowly will crack the tip and allow steam to escape, preventing the build-up of pressure and the ultimate popping. In the past, making popcorn in a pot was a task that required training, specialization, and great skill. In today’s microwave era, everything is so much simpler, but still it’s a good idea to put aside a few kernels and try the old-fashioned popping method of yesteryear.

 

Popping Instructions:

In microwave: Place small quantity of kernels (approximately 2 T) into a paper bag you received in your box (make sure it’s dry and not torn), and fold the edge of bag to seal. (At last: a way to re-use those paper bags!) Set timer for 2-3 minutes, and listen carefully. After a few seconds the kernels will start popping loudly, setting the bag into a lively, throbbing dance. When 3 seconds without any popping have elapsed, remove paper bag from the microwave. Caution! It’s hot. Make a small opening for ventilation; allow steam to escape, and then cool. Add salt, and the seasoning of your choice.

In a pot: (from the website of Kibbutz Sha’ar Hagolan)
The rule is 3 T of oil for each ½ – ¾ cup of popcorn. The oil should cover the bottom of the pot and coat each kernel. (You can combine oil and butter, if desired.)
Timetable 1: Pour the oil and wait a bit till it warms up. (Can use one or two kernels to test.) When oil-bubbles form around kernel, it’s time to start.
Question: Should we toss the kernels?
A: In the beginning of the process, you can give it a little shake to arrange the kernels in one layer and for the oil to cover.
Timetable 2: Leave the kernels on medium heat. When you start hearing the first to pop, lower the flame.
Babysitter: Keep an eye on them. This is no time to go set the DVD.
Listen to the sound of the popping kernels. When the frequency diminishes, it’s time to turn off the flame. Do not open the pot till you hear the silence of the all-popped popcorn.

Good luck with your popping, and Shavua Tov from Bat Ami, Alon, and the Chubeza. team

_________________________

What’s in the boxes this week?

Monday: parsley, scallions, lettuce, eggplants, green soy (edamame) or Thai yard long beans, tomatoes, cucumbers, a piece of Tripolitanian pumpkin, red peppers, potatoes, popcorn

In the large box, in addition: okra, cherry tomatoes, nana

Wednesday: red peppers, spaghetti or butternut squash, a piece of Tripolitanian pumpkin, tomatoes, scallions, eggplants, cucumbers, lettuce, nana or white savory, popcorn, Thai long beans or okra.

In the large box, in addition: Cherry tomatoes, potatoes, cilantro or garlic chive

And there’s more! You can add to your basket a wide, delectable range of additional products from fine small producers: granola and cookies, flour, sprouts, goat dairies, fruits, honey, crackers, probiotic foods, dried fruits and leathers and organic olive oil too! You can learn more about each producer on the Chubeza website. On our order system there’s a detailed listing of the products and their cost, you can make an order online now!