Greetings from Dancing Hen Farm!
Our buying club is now open for this weekend's deliveries. As always, ordering opened at 5 am today, Tuesday (12/16) morning and closes Thursday morning (12/18) at 5 am. Look for pork products, chicken, storage vegetables and kale.
Yes, kale!!! This warmer weather has melted the snow and given us the opportunity to harvest under the row covers here in our lower field. I was able to harvest kale last night for dinner and it was beautiful and oh so delicious! Just remember quantities are limited, so please order early.
On farm, last weekend, we finally got our Christmas tree and barn wreath up. Lots of thanks go out to Jason and Tommy for their help with the wreath. Tommy drew the design and Jason created the wreath. There is even garlic on the wreath this year! I will try and post some pictures on facebook and the blog. Farmers Jason and Tommy also helped out in the greenhouse with some late season planting and bed preparation. Thanks guys!!!
We finally tried this year's pork chops for dinner last night and we agree with our customers. They were delicious! Farmer Don declared them "the best cut from this year's pork"! I baked them in the oven on a bed of apples with just a bit of brown sugar and butter. Colcannon made with fresh harvested kale and a simple spinach salad completed the meal. We still have a tiny, tiny bit of spinach under row cover as well, so the spinach was also freshly harvested.
Earlier in the week, Farmer Don made sweet potato tarts. I guess they were more like tartlets, as he made them the size of large cookies. He uses a recipe out of the Vedge cookbook for the filling and then uses a butter based recipe from Cook's Illustrated for the crust. He made them really early in the morning and boy was it nice to awake to a house filled with the aroma of baked goods. I had two for breakfast! There is filling left over, so maybe we will have a sweet treat tonight?
Other than cooking, we are busy on farm planning for next year. As with every year, last year had many successes and also some "opportunities", as Farmer Don likes to say. This was our first season as a full choice CSA and for next season, we will continue to allow all members to choose the items they receive in their box each week. For the upcoming season we will be trying to make not only more variety of produce available, but also more quantities, so fewer members experience "sold out" items. We learned a lot this year about which items were really popular and which not so. We are taking a hard look at our harvest and planting lists from last year to help determine planting levels for next year. We do like customer input, so please if you feel so inclined, send us an email and let us know what veggies you would like to see more or less of.
Speaking of the CSA. Our early bird discount ends on December 31st. You will need to register on the computer and submit your payment to us by this date to receive your $30 discount. We also offer a returning member discount and this discount does not expire. A big thank you to everyone who has already signed up for the 2015 season. Your funds allow us to order seed, potting mix and other supplies needed months before your boxes of vegetables are ready for delivery.
This Saturday is the final Forks Farm Market of the year. Farmers Don and Phil will be behind the table selling eggs, kale and some storage crops. Why not take a break from the hustle of the season and spend a bit of time at Forks Farm? You can pick up food for the holidays and some last minute gifts. At least for now, the weather doesn't look too bad.
Speaking of weather, the local weatherman just reported it has been 9 days since we have had a sunny day! Today we are to have rain, so no vitamin D to be had today! But, never fear, the winter solstice is this Sunday, December 21. Winter solstice marks the shortest day (longest night) of the year, after this day, the days start getting longer. Gradually longer...... But, we will take any extra minute of daylight we can get!
Speaking of daylight. The sun (what sun?), is not up and I need to walk the dogs and check on the chickens.
Happy, happy holidays from the farm!!!!