Eggs I have known

Wrinkled Egg
Wrinkled Egg – 3 3/8 oz!

Every once in a while (like mostly weekly), we get an egg that defies explanation.  This is one that most likely came from one of our old ladies. They seem to be inspired that way.

By the way, the egg on the right is a normal extra-large (2 1/4 ounce). Our over-achieving chickens actually consider it a ‘small’.

We don’t sell these – although the insides are fine, most folks want the outsides to be more normal.

“If I have to lay an egg for my country, I’ll do it.” – Bob Hope

New Lamb and Beef are here!

I just got reminded that I have not posted in a while and we do have some new stock.

Lamb:  we have limited variety of cuts, including legs, chops and a few shoulder roasts. As you may know, our lamb tends towards small and mild.  It also tends towards out of stock…

I also have a nice run of steaks – T-Bone, Porterhouse, Sirloin and Round, as well as some tenderloin.  And plenty of the best ground beef available.

Of course we also have lots of pork chops, roasts, chickens, bacon and preserves.

Pears – Good News and the Bad News

Being partial to pears and famous for our pear chutneys, jams, pickles and so on, I was tickled to hear of the Survivor Pear Tree at Ground Zero in NYC.

But…

As I understand it, the Survivor Tree is a Callery Pear, originally imported from China in 1918 is an Invasive Species.   Not to be encouraged.  Should be eliminated wherever possible.

Talk about mixed feelings…

BTW – ours are Bosc.  Imported from France in the early 1800’s.  Good for eating, great for relish, pickling.  The family is still fighting over the Pear Pickles!

Contoocook Holiday Market This Sunday!

We’ll see you at the Train Station in the center of Contoocook at the Holiday Farmers Market.

We will have:

Preserves (Sweet Tomato Jam for Breakfast, various Pear Relishes, plus, plus, plus) – Mary promises – nothing normal!

Meat – Roasts, bacon, chickens, steaks and more.

Coffee – Sean’s best ( UNTA! )

There will be lots of other things as well.  Many of your favorite summer vendors will be there!

A Modest Proposal Regarding GMO Salmon

The only way to fight it is to let it be known that ya won’t buy ANY of a particular food until it can be labeled.

They tried this stealth stuff with rBGH in milk – as soon as folks started rumbling, the anti-labeling regulation went away, followed… pretty quickly by the rBGH itself because folks are uneasy about it.

I don’t like farm raised salmon because I don’t like the taste/texture and because I understand that there are big pollution problems with the industry. But now I absolutely won’t eat any until labeling is allowed.

How long do you think it will take the salmon industry to require permission to label if they cannot sell ANY of their product?

Farmers Markets – 2010

This is going to be a busy summer!  Here is where and when we will be at the markets this summer:

Mon 16:30 – 19:00  Penacook Farmers Market
Wed, 15:00 – 18:00- Exit 20 Farmers’ Market at Tanger Outlets in Tilton
Thu, 15:00 to 18:00 – Bradford Community Farmers Market
Fri 15:00 – 18:00 – Sanbornton Farmers Market
Sat, 09:00 – 12:00 – Contoocook Farmers Market

We look forward to seeing you there.

Signs of Life

We are major planting long term crops this year.  This is the first year we are looking further into the future than tomatoes and peppers.   100 asparagus plants ( 100 more each of the next 2 years). Raspberries. Planning replacement pear trees.

When we planted the strawberries 3 weeks ago, I gave the slimy little things a 40% chance. Well today the first bloom appeared. They’re still small but they are going to produce well, starting next year.  Meanwhile we are researching the great shortcake controversy:  Angelfood or Biscuit.  This is an important  thing and we want to get it right.  Reputations are at stake.

The sawdust blocks that Karen spread under the straw didn’t impress me. But fungushood is powerful. Dunno how big the little boogers need to get but they ARE getting!

We are now waiting for beets, turnips, garlic scallions, onions, kale, brussels sprouts and shallots to show signs of life.  We still haven’t planted the tomatoes, peppers and beans…

Tomorrow I gotta break up the sawdust blocks a little more – the chunks are too big.  And bury some more asparagusses.

Blue Plate Special

Asparagus SpearsSo I didn’t obliterate the old asparagus plant that came with the property.  There they were 2 days ago – 5 proud stalks, waiting to be turned into a meal.  By the time I cut them this morning, they were a little long in the tooth, so to speak but still quite edible.

Since the hens have been very obliging, I knew there was an omelette in my future as I hilled up the new asparagus bed.

This is very simple:

  1. Chop asparagus spears into 1-2″ pieces, making about 1/2 cup.  Sautee in a little olive oil or butter, splash a couple of Tb of water on them to aid in cooking, put aside. Dice or make sticks of about 1x1x3″ of Jarlsberg, Gruyère or Cheddar.
  2. Gently whisk together 3 eggs, 1/2 tsp paprika, a dash of cayenne and a little salt.  Mix.  Do not whip.  I am serious about this.  Omelettes are not supposed to be that fluffy.Omelette Cooking
  3. Get pan medium hot (you should hear the eggs when you pour in).  Pour in eggs.
  4. Immediately put cheese and asparagus in center of  egg mixture.  Lower heat.
  5. Watch, until the edge starts to dry out and the surface looks like it might solidify.  Unless you have training, in which case you do not need my tutelage, use a spatula to fold one third of the edge over the middle.  Wait a little and fold over the other edge.
  6. Cook on low heat until the eggs are set.  If you don’t have eggs from a chicken you interviewed, set them harder and promise me you are going to go find good eggs.  The hens appreciate the attention and you will appreciate eating real food.

Localness Evaluation(how far did it travel to the kitchen):

  • Eggs – about 300 feet
  • Asparagus – about 200 feet
  • Butter – New England but not local local
  • Jarlsberg – Norway
  • Paprika – I know Penzey’s buys around the world
  • Cayenne – Ditto Penzey’s
  • Salt – I need to ask the coop where the salt comes from.

Clearly the volume bulk passes muster but we could do better on all the addings.  All it takes is money for higher quality (and higher priced) local food.

We could have replaced the spices with our own diced peppers.

Pork and Beef are here!

We have chops, fresh hams, shoulders, Country Style ribs, Spare Ribs, Plain, Italian and Breakfast Ground, and kabobs.

In beef, all the good steaks, stew, ground, short ribs and more!

Of course, no sub-clinical drugs, hormones, garbage or other nonsense.

Until June 15th, we are running a ground special – Plain/Italian/Breakfast ground pork $5/pound, $22.50/5 pounds.  Ground beef $5.50/pound, $25/5 pounds.

We do have T-Bones, Porterhouse and lots of ground beef as well as chickens.

Raspberries

New Raspberry PlantWe planted raspberries a week ago.  Many of the canes were sprouting leaves already.

They take patience – the fruit grows on canes that grew last year so we won’t see any until next year, provided the fence is strong enough to keep out the bear.New Raspberry Plant

I figure they should do well – the area was covered with wild ones until the goats moved in.  So on-purpose ones should thrive.

My master gardener conspires to cover the landscape with specialty crops – Asparagus, Strawberries, Raspberries.  Every week a new surprise.

My Father-In-Law was a bramble grower – had 12 varieties early, late, everbearing, red, black, yellow –  strung out on wires.  Bought cloned stock from a fancy place near home.  Mary’s dog used to pick them when he wasn’t looking.  Sometimes when he was…