Stories and Food (including Thanksgiving turkeys!) from Local Farms
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This Week's Vegetable Harvest:
Carrots & Parsnips
Lettuce or Salad Mix
Acorn Squash - from Big Patch Farm's Amish Community Growers, Platteville, WI
Rainbow Swiss Chard & Spinach
Thank you to everyone who visited us at our last outdoor Oak Park Farmers' Market on Saturday! Did you know that our family has a long-time connection with Oak Park? Our story (and the story of our market days schedule) was recently highlighted in a recentfarmer profile piecefrom an Oak Park Village Commissioner.
Back at the farm, we continue to bring in several of the large harvests for use this fall and winter. The fields are still very soggy but our spirits are not! The team is now very adept at harvesting in rain gear and dressing in layers for a wide variety of weather changes.
As Jeff and I prepare for our annual planning meetings, we're also conducting soil tests, field research, farm visits and attending seminars.
Jen recently attended the Kinship Fellows Summit on behalf of the Liberty Prairie Foundation and Prairie Wind Family Farm. At this summit, a cohort from around the globe poured over global trends data and research, discussing food systems from throughout the world and looking toward the future of local food systems within a variety of different scenarios.
As a part of this summit, attendees took an in-depth tour at All Grass Farms with our friend, Cliff McConville, to learn more about his rotational grazing systems and farm business.
The tour was perfectly timed to check in on Thanksgiving turkeys! The turkeys are looking healthy and happy in their green pastures. We are offering Cliff's locally-raised turkeys again this season (details below).
In November, Jeff will fly to the east coast as he was selected to attend a Mastermind Meeting outside of Baltimore, MD! Unlike the macro-trends analyzed at the summit, the Mastermind Meeting will dig into micro-trends within sustainable agriculture, production and farm businesses. This will be discussed with a small group of selected growers (those with 10+ years of experience) from around the nation.
The combination of these learnings (along with the support of our family and community!) help us to continue to build an economically, socially and environmentally sustainable farm.
Your farmers, Jeff, Jen and the farm crew
Pastured Local Turkeys Available Reserve a local, pasture-raised, organic-fed heritage turkey for a special Thanksgiving dinner from our friends at All Grass Farms.
Farmer Cliff raises Broad Breasted Bronze turkeys which are moved to pasture at 3 weeks of age. They are free range in and around portable shelters with their shelters being moved daily. They are fed certified organic, non-GMO feed mixture from day one with no antibiotics or growth hormones. They are processed at 17-19 weeks for maximum flavor and they are humanely processed at local, family-owned USDA inspected facility.
Weights range from 15-25 lbs. We will do everything we can to provide you with a turkey in your desired weight range. Turkeys are frozen and packaged in a vacuum-sealed bag. Heart, liver, neck, and gizzard included inside each turkey.
$35 deposit per turkey due at time of order. You will be invoiced with your total at $5.95/lb. (less your deposit) due upon pickup.
Turkeys will be available for pickup from the farm Thursday, November 21 from 3:30 to 7:00pm. Alternative arrangements may be made if needed.
Help our Food Forest thrive! Prairie Wind Family Farm and the Liberty Prairie Foundation collaborated on project to plan, purchase, plant and deer-fence over 400 seedlings on the Prairie Crossing Farm. Now we need to protect the young trees against winter cold, spring weather variations, summer sunscald, and the little creatures that chew the bark above and below the coming snow. Can you help with a donation? Can you help by volunteering to install the tree protectors? Please visit our fundraising project. We would be most grateful, and your donation is tax deductible. Thank you!
Notes from the Farm Kitchen
Rutabagas are creamy and starchy with a pale yellow flesh. Rutabagas are rich in vitamin C, dietary fiber, potassium and antioxidant compounds. They work well for mashing, roasting and braising. We like to use in place of potatoes or combine with potatoes for a mashed rutabaga and potato dish. Rutabagas also store for weeks when wrapped in a plastic bag in your refrigerator.
This week's acorn squash comes to us again from Big Patch Farm, which is an Amish community of growers located in Platteville, Wisconsin. These squash are best eaten soon! You may notice some ground spots which are indicative of wet soils, so the squash storage time may be impacted. We like to cube, roast and store storage in the freezer for later use in soups and baked dishes. Or, cut the squash in half with a sharp knife and scoop out the seeds. You can stuff or cut the squash into slices to roast or sauté. Although the skin is not edible, the seeds are delicious when roasted and lightly salted.