What a scary farmer Halloween

Woah. Where does time go? I’ll have a much more in-depth post sometime soon, but for now I wanted to put up a couple scary Halloween pictures. All the interns got pretty creative and into the Halloween spirit.

From left to right: Jake had a fitting costume as an ear of corn with the horrible corn worm on his shoulder, Missy was a rockstar in the farm’s band called Troll Fungus, Jill was a hula hoe (big red/grey rectangle) we use them all the time for weeding on the farm, I was a corn seed packet (with all of the seed packets I looked at and planted, it only seemed fitting), and Corwyn was one of the San Fran Giants “walking dead” baseball player.

Jake and I agreed that those were probably some of our most creative costumes yet. Stay tuned for more pictures and updates soon.

Have a splendid weekend!

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Do the Can-Can!

this is why I got a really bad berry stomach ache on Friday during picking….

Things have been a bit busy on the farm. The summer rush is in full swing. Here’s a pictorial overview of all sorts of farm updates.

sweet peas were here and now they’re done, Loganberries are still here

the CSA packing line, plus Jude thrown in!

Angies beautiful flowers

strawberries are starting to slow down in the heat

Jake holding Abby like the lion king

pretty fennel

chard – great colors

part of our booth at the farmers market, beets galore

Boysenberries EVERYWHERE!

farm photo op, most of the daily crew🙂

and the littlest member, Jude sucking on his mango

Loganberries!

We work hard. All of the harvesting, weeding, packing, digging, tilling, planting, transplanting, watering, and everything else, but we also play hard. We challenged a nearby farming community to a kickball game:

Mountain Bounty – team domination

intense warm up, one handed catching, beer in other hand

the two sides combine for a peaceful post game pic

we harvested over 1,000 pounds of broccoli last Wednesday and some were as big as Jason’s biceps

Even with all this work, we’ve made sure to make rock’in meals. Here’s a sampling:

pesto Mediterranean pizza

spring rolls wrapped in blanched cabbage leaves and special sauce

yummy pesto

beet, carrot, beet green roast

And, we’ve also tried to keep preserving food….

sun drying apricots and nectarines

the new pressure cooker with lots of our canning work: from left to right: dill pickles, with strawberries on top, boysenberries in pear juice, with pickled fennel (top), nectarines in juice, hot cumin zucchini pickle, and 3rd top mango/serrano hot sauce, bottom right jearinera and nectalo (nectarine and loganberry) jam

had to do some construction in the cabin….add some shelfs

Wow, there’s just not enough time in the day. Gotta love summer! Enjoy the rest of your weekend and eat some delicious food!

 

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Market time!

The Farmers Market began last Saturday! We were all really excited and the market ended up going really well. Here’s some photos from the day:

setting up and organizing….

delicious peas

Jill (an intern) quickly finalizing last touches

Our board with the days produce

I did the writing, and John’s son Noah added the great pictures. Can you catch the misspell? I fixed it pretty quick🙂

Noah and Jake finalizing the booth

Angie’s flowers at our partner booth next door

beautiful flowers

Cloe (one of the flower employes) with some sunflowers

from left to right: Corey, me, Jake, and Missy – almost a complete intern picture, woohoo, go intern team!

Time is just flying. Tomorrow we will harvest over 300 CSA boxes! This week we have kale, onions, two lettuces, peas, broccoli, spinach, zucchini, beets, carrots, cilantro, and dill. Tons of delicious food is being grown out here. Check back soon for some more picture updates🙂

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Harvest Time!

Step right up and get your box!

Your CSA box that is🙂

This week was our first week for harvesting the CSA boxes. It’s been an exciting week filled with lots of hard work, harvesting, washing, and packing. Here’s a little picture summary:

here’s the “Clubhouse” board with all of our lists….

after we harvest everything into boxes, the boxes are brought over to the packing tent by the harvest slay (wooden box in back) and the tractor. then there’s the washing tubs & screens followed by re-boxing and van loading

Japanese turnips coming through the line

red leaf lettuce bath

after it’s washed it’s back to the van to transport over to the main farm location for packing

the packing line

Di with our jumbo kale bunches!

layer 1 of the box: napa cabbage, carrots, radishes, Japanese turnips, and zucchinis

layer 2: kale, 2 types of lettuce, garlic scapes, and the newsletter

It was a pretty great box for the first week! Everything went smoothly with harvesting and getting boxes to their drop off locations on time. It helps a ton when we have the awesome crew that we do, harvesting over 500 heads of lettuce goes by in a breeze.

Vegetables have not been the only thing we’ve been harvesting……

these don’t go into CSA boxes, so John offered Jake and I money to sell them at a roadside stand

strawberries, get your strawberries!

there were so many ready for an early harvest

And with all of the “seconds” we made some jam!

Also, news update, our broody hen hatched some chicks!

future eggs!

John and Angie’s little one, Jude, decided to hang out with me for a little bit after work one day. I just so happened to be eating some super garlicy hummus, that surprisingly the 1 and a half year old just loved and ate all of mine up!

Jude is so cute!

he loves to steal water bottles

Have a terrific weekend everybody. A big CONGRATS to all the recent graduates out there and particularly for ALEXA and GARRETT, woohooo!

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Farm Tour Part 2

Hi there!

Here’s one of the views from our “office”

More often, the view looks more like this though:

tomatoes under their protective remay covers

An acre of winter squash

garlic and a few types of cucumbers…they’re white because we coated them with a translucent clay liquid to keep the cucumber beetles off of them

grow sweet peas, grow!

an acre of potatoes on the top and an acre of winter squash on the bottom

There’s the big white house on the hill. The owner is not affiliated at all with the farm, she just thought the farmed land across the street looked nice and wanted some of her land to look like that, which was perfect because we needed a couple acres for potatoes and winter squash.

lettuces and fennel

Stay back 50 feet all directions!

broccoli and broccoli and some cabbages

caterpillar tunnels are keeping things warm and they’re growing!

summer squash are flowering!

The hot weather is here, which means that it’s time to get a bunch of irrigation in place and get the water flowing.

awkward things to try and balance at first

the daily irrigation pipe moves

overhead irrigation lines are laid every 6 beds in the fields

The first crop ready for harvest at the Birchville site are the radishes. Yum!

they’re so juicy and spicy

Back at the main farm location, the hoop houses there are close to harvest.

napa cabbage…2 more weeks

carrots are almost there

And after a long day of hard work, we relax outside and in the kitchen area

There’s tons going on here right now. I figured less writing and more pictures was the way to go. Today we planted strawberries and the first few are getting ripe from the last planting. Cooking experiments are coming along. Jake has almost perfected making raw milk feta cheese, I’m making progress with thick raw milk yogurt, we’ve made socca’s, new salad dressings, and even sprouted granola! Recipes and more pictures will follow. Enjoy the great weather and a fresh salad!

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Farm Tour Part 1

 

Hi There!

It’s almost May….where has time gone?!? We’ve been busy bees here at the farm. I’ve tried to take a bunch of pictures the last couple weeks – enjoy🙂 First, there’s some of Angie’s (John’s wife)  flowers.

see the bee?

it's great to see some flowers all over when we're working with the veggies

so colorful

Now the spring annual crops are starting to show up. Check out out asparagus and strawberries.

yummy asparagus

can you spot the beginning strawberries? they're green...

Inside the two hoop houses we have some savoy cabbage, beets, and carrots growing. They are all coming along really well.

flowers, golden beets, and savoy cabbage (right)

beet greens

carrot tops

Another huge project has been building these caterpillar tunnels. We had all the aluminum sent to us and Jake did some technical math and figured out how to bend all the pipes at specific angles so they’d create the roof angle that they did. They are 250 feet long moveable, sturdy, and reusable greenhouses.

Caterpillar Tunnels!

the view inside the tunnel...the smaller coverings are a cloth that helps insulate the tomatoes and zucchini even more so they stay really warm

And last but not least, it hasn’t been all work around here….

hiking along the Yuba River

Jake has gotten some new ideas……

a little smaller than the Grand Canyon...but it'll do🙂

Enjoy some activity outside! I’ll be back with the continuation of the farm tour soon…unless the weeds take over, ha!

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Egg-cellent

Hi!

Wow, it’s been awhile. The last month has been quite busy, especially since the rain seems to have finally stopped. We’ve been playing catch up on planting tons of veggies that have not been able to be planted because the fields were too wet. Earlier this week we put almost an acre of potatoes in as well as an acre of broccoli, carrots, chard, peas, lettuces, tomatoes, zucchinis, and so many more. So much future food is in the ground, with TONS more to come! Today we planted up eggplants and various sweet peppers. There are literally thousands of eggplants and peppers, ah can’t wait!!

The flowers in the header are the California Poppy, the state’s official flower fyi🙂

Here’s an introduction to some of the animals on the farm – our laying hens.

hi ladies!

being chickens

And….of course the rooster. He’s got some great colors.

So last week I had an urge to make a quiche. We have such great eggs with brilliant egg yolks.

and that's what eating bugs and natural foraging will result in, yum!

I made an alternative quiche crust that turned out really well. It was slightly dry, but held together and worked great as a substitute for a white flour crust. Here’s the ingredients, with approximate measurements:

  • 1 C rolled oats
  • 1/2 C walnuts chopped thinly
  • 1/4 C extra light olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup buckwheat flour
  • 1/4 C extra light olive oil for oiling the pan & more may need to be needed for the crust mixture

Just add all the ingredients and mix in a food processor and then press it into a pre-oiled pan.

pressed in quiche crust

Quiche ingredients:

  • sauté onion, mushroom, kale or spinach
  • add diced up kamalata olives
  •  feta if you’d like
  • spice – rosemary, garlic, oregano  – any savory ones you’d prefer

And

I put 6 eggs and about 1/4 cup raw whole milk into it

Bake at 375ish for 30-40 minutes. Test when the center of the quiche is firm and isn’t liquidy. Let cool for 5ish minutes so it can settle and then enjoy!

that was the second piece...didn't have the restraint to take a picture before the first!

We’re loving the farm and enjoying the surrounding nature. I’ll post some more pictures of the farm and our adventures sometime soon – hopefully!

Until then, try making a quiche – or some sort of new food adventure!

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In the Green Spirit….again

Green. Everywhere.

Things are sure looking green in the foothills. And they should be after being drenched with over 12 inches of rain during five days and then a foot of snow! It’s been a wet one to say the least. I thought it may have just been a tease when the sun said hi this last Saturday morning. I decided to go for a hike and hoped that the rain/snow would withstand for a few hours. Fortunately, the morning was gorgeous and the hike was a very green one indeed. Mountain Bounty Farm is located about 2 miles from the Wild and Scenic Yuba River. Last Saturday, I hiked from the farm down the hills a bit and along the river. There was never a dull moment. Check out some photos.

timber! Purdon road was out of commission for a bit

Purdon crossing bridge over the Yuba

green...everywhere!

Spring has sprung...maybe....

not green, but Liana the neighbor's horse - she's 32!

That’s Liana, the neighbor’s horse – she’s 32!

In the spirit of greenness, I couldn’t resist rewinding a few weeks to post some of the last pictures from the last farm. In the last couple days that we were there numerous lettuce varieties were ready to harvest. They were soo delicious! The red butterhead [Sophia variety] had a great texture, color, and crunch.

delicious and about 3 pounds

Sophia red butterhead, delectable!

that's some serious sauerkraut material!

From the trees, shrubs, and mosses to lettuce, cabbage, and fennel – greens are back!

UNTIL…….last Saturday night when this arrived:

The Intern Kitchen

Our cabin and the pathway down to the other cabins and fields

some deer came through...

the calm after the storms

And now almost all the snow has melted. Hopefully spring is truly here now! We’ve got lots of potatoes, strawberries, peas, broccoli, kale, and many other crops to get into the ground next week, let the season begin!

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New Season, New Farm

SURPRISE!

I’m still here🙂 We didn’t fall off the grid yet, at least not completely. It’s been a crazy busy 10 days and I’m long overdue for a post. Unfortunately, it’s going to have to be a really quick one, because my computer has 7% battery left and the power source, is not well, traditional.

Anyways, great news. Jake and I moved to Nevada City, California early last week. We are now working on Mountain Bounty Farm. The farm is fantastic! The people are down to earth, the scenery [in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada’s] is spectacular, and the farm is a very successful business with a thriving Community Supported Agriculture [CSA] boosting over 500 members!

I’ll be back soon with more pictures.

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Label GMO’s!

Top of the week to you!

 

“Control the food, and you control the people.”  -Henry Kissinger

 

Today, I wanted to post something different than usual. No recipe, farm pictures, or nutritional information. I stumbled across I short video this morning that was very inspirational and timely. Many American’s are unaware of  GMOs: genetically modified organisms. Basically, the companies that have monopolies in the food industry (Monsanto, etc.) are running a massive, unethical experiment on all 311 million Americans. Monsanto and other companies take genes from one organism, say a bacteria and splice it into a corn seed. Then they can code the genes in the corn and bacteria to be resistant to deadly pesticides. So the corn can be sprayed with these pesticides and stay alive, while every other living organism is killed.

It’s just unnatural. And it’s unneeded. The European Union banned any food made with GMO’s years ago. As did Japan and even China! Even more unbelievable is that American food companies that sell over seas have two different versions of their products, one that has GMO’s and is only sold in the U.S. and one that’s GMO FREE and is sold almost everywhere else. I could go on all day long about the heated debate over whether GMO’s are good or bad for our health, environment, and economy. The bottom line is this: as eaters we have a right to know what is in our food.

Fortunately, a the label GMO movement is spreading across the U.S. and particularly in California. From Feb. 22nd to April 22nd there is an enormous state-wide grassroots campaign to collect over 800,000 petition signatures. If the signature collecting is successful, California will have a measure on the ballot in November to make it a law that GMO’s have to be labeled in all products sold in California! I’d assume that labeling would then spread fairly quickly across the country.

Check out this excellent video on gmofilm.com. Also, Labelgmos.org is another terrific resource.

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