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TapRoot Meat Share - Week 2

Posted on by Justine Mentink

Welcome to the second week of the 2014-2015 TapRoot meat share!

This week your share contains:

A whole Free Range Chicken from Longspell Point Farm.

A pound of ground pork or pack of 2 pork chops from here at the farm.

A pack of Cumberland sausages made with TapRoot pork by Helen and family at Salmontail sausages.

Ingredients of the sausages: TapRoot pork, water, rusk, salt, pepper, sage, marjoram, cayenne, nutmeg, and mace.

Cost breakdown of your share:

Whole chicken @ $5.35/lb, average weight 4.67lbs,                      $25.00

Ground Pork @ $4.50/lb, 1 lb packs $4.50

or Pork Chops @ $6.25/lb average weight 1 lb,                             $6.25 or $4.50

Cumberland sausages @ $8.50/lb, 1 lb packs                                 $8.50

                                                                                        Total: $38.00 - $39.75

TapRoot animal update:

Nathan has been working on a new mobile layer coop called an 'Eggmobile'. This will be their summer home, where they will lay their eggs and roost at night. During the day, they will forage around outside and daily or weekly the Eggmobile will be moved to a new patch of grass. This works particularly well when mixed with the rotation of cattle. The cattle first graze an area, then are moved to a fresh patch of pasture. The Eggmobile follows them, the chickens scratch around in the cow patties for larva and at the same time acting as a manure spreader, making the manure more evenly spread out. We are getting 5 beef cattle from a farmer down the road this year, so it'll be great to see this method in action.Ducks arroving at the farm

The ducks arrived at the farm last week, 100 of them, hatched by Jack Jarvis of Salmontail River farm. Until this year we have been buying in our ducks from Bergs hatchery in Manatoba. It's great to be able to support a new venture from a young farmer in our area. Here is a picture of a few more ducks that Helen (Jacks mom) brought to top up the numbers.

Our first flock of Free Range chickens will be ready for the meat share at the end of May. Until then we will be buying chicken from Longspell Point Farms in Kingsport. This year we have increased our quota, and so should have enough to get us through the winter with our own birds. Under our free range license, we're only to have chickens first of April to the end of November, this is because the birds must have access to fresh outdoor forage.    

 

If you have questions or comments please e-mail me (Justine) at Justine@taprootfarms.ca.

Hope you enjoy your meat share and have a great few weeks!

 



Note From Noggins - 22 April

Posted on by Teri Jenkins

The crews were up nice and early this morning to take advantage of the calm weather to finish up a multi-day project on the farm.  Just as the breeze was starting to pick up around 9AM everyone started lashing down the plastic covering for all the raspberry tunnels.  This is no small task!  It takes an entire crew to first get the frame of the tunnel up and then haul the plastic up and over the tunnels that are 30-40 feet high and hundreds of metres long! It has to be done quickly and efficiently and we're lucky that our crew have done this job every year.  Why cover up the raspberries?  We grow several different varieties, all of which mature and bear fruit at different points in the season.  By protecting our canes from wind, cold and rain we encourage our early bearing varieties to ripen earlier and can convince our later bearing varieties to keep going when the weather turns cool in the autumn.  This way we can offer fresh, beautiful raspberries to everyone for a much longer time.  When you're eating fresh raspberries in your fruit share in the summer, remember that the fruit in your hand began in mid-April when the Noggins Farm crew got a kickstart on warm weather for the raspberry plants!

--Adrien at Noggins



All about Sunchokes

Posted on by Teri Jenkins

Originally posted 14 May 2013, reposted 21 April 2014

Sunchokes/Jerusalem Artichokes
This photo is of our Jerusalem Artichokes last year in the field, which turned out to be a very nice hedge at the side of our salad mix patch.  If you've never used them before, you're in for a treat and something really truly different.  They are, as they look, in the sunflower family, and they have a fantastic crunch and a nutty sunflower flavour.  You can, but need not peel them, just scrub them to get the dirt off (which should come as a relief as most of them are pretty gnarly!).


In my previous job in Calgary, I often recommended Sunchokes as an alternative to potatoes for those watching their blood sugar levels or on restrictive diets or clenses.  Sunchokes contain the carbohydrate inulin instead of starch, which is a type of dietary fibre known as fructan that the human body has a limited ability to process.  Unlike potatoes-- which are considered high on the glycemic index-- the inulin in sunchokes does not cause an insulin response in the body or raise triglycerides (Of course, please do your own research to see if it is right for you if you are on a restricted diet). 


Regardless of all this, they are delicious little nuggets and I hope you find a way to enjoy them!  The first time I had them I over-roasted them, which was a big mistake: They get bitter and have a soggy textured when overcooked.  Once I was ready to attempt cooking them again I used a recipe and had much better luck.  I have heard that they can be hard to digest for some, who recommend fully cooking them (like in the soup recipe below).  I am including a recipe that is basically how I most often prepare them, as well as links to a few others that I think look interesting:

RECIPE: Sauteed Sunchokes
Ingredients:
1 lb sunchokes/jerusalem artichoke
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Directions:
1 Scrub or peel artichokes.
2 Slice each artichoke to 1/4 inch thick slices.
3 In a Wok or frying pan, heat olive oil and butter on medium-high heat.
4 Add sliced artichokes, garlic, salt, pepper and parsley; stir well to coat artichokes.
5 Stir-fry for about 4 minutes, stirring often.
6 Do not overcook artichokes, they should be slightly crunchy.
7 Serve immediately.

Check out a couple of other recipes that might inspire you:
Cream of Sunchoke Soup(We tried this one last fall with much success; I highly recommend it!)
Sunny Sunchoke Salad



Celeriac Recipes from Windy Hill Farm

Posted on by Teri Jenkins

We visited our friends Alyson and Will at Windy Hill Farm in New Brunswick on the weekend... They have a 20-week CSA and so I looked through some of her newsletters for some recipes to share with you this week, here's a couple for celeriac, coming in this week's veggie share:

 

Celeriac and Apple Soup

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter

  • 4 cups 1/2-inch cubes peeled celeriac

  • 3 cups 1/2-inch cubes peeled cored apples (from about 2 medium)

  • 1 1/2 cups chopped onion (about 1 large)

  • 4 cups (or more) low-salt chicken broth

  • 1/2 cup chopped chives

  • 1/2 cup grapeseed oil

  • Pinch of salt

  • 3 ounces thinly sliced pancetta (Italian bacon) or bacon

Preparation

Melt butter in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add celeriac, apples, and onion. Cook until apples and some of celeriac are translucent (do not brown), stirring often, about 15 minutes. Add 4 cups broth. Cover and bring to simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer covered until celeriac and apples are soft, stirring occasionally, about 25 minutes. Remove from heat; cool slightly.

Working in batches, puree soup in blender until smooth, adding more broth by 1/4 cupfuls to thin to desired consistency. Return soup to pot. Season to taste with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 day ahead. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and keep refrigerated.

Puree chives, grapeseed oil, and pinch of salt in blender until smooth.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Arrange pancetta or bacon slices in single layer on rimmed baking sheet. Roast until browned and crispy, about 18 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Crumble pancetta. DO AHEAD: Chive oil and pancetta can be made 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.

Rewarm soup over medium heat. Divide soup among bowls. Sprinkle pancetta or bacon crumbles over each serving. Drizzle each bowl with chive oil.

 

Celeriac and Potato Mash

  • 2 lbs celeriac, peeled and cut into ½ inch pieces (about 4 ½ cups)
  • 2 lbs potatoes, peeled and cut into ¾ inch pieces (about 4 ½ cups)
  • Salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter at room temperature
  • ¼ cream or milk
  • Black pepper
  • Paprika for garnish (optional)

Place celeriac, potatoes and pinch of salt in a pot and barely cover with water. Bring to a boil and then simmer till vegetables are fork-tender (15-20 minutes). Drain, reserving one cup of the water. Return vegetables to pot and leave on medium heat for 1-2 minutes to dry them a bit. Remove pot from heat and add butter. Mash with potato masher, adding cream (milk) and as much of the reserved cooking water as you need to obtain a creamy consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with paprika to garnish.

From: “The Earthbound Cook”



Farm Stays at TapRoot Farms

Posted on by Tim Carr

Spring has officially sprung at the farm. As we look ahead to more agreeable weather, we invite you to check out our farm stay possibilities. The Swallow's Nest and Walden Camp offer two very different getaway experiences. The Swallow's Nest is our more popular destination, with every comfort you can imagine. It can accommodate up to 8 people, as well as the family pet. Walden Camp offers a more rugged experience, for a couple or small group. Both have very private settings.


Booking information is available on our website, www.taprootfarms.ca which includes a vacancy calendar, rates and lots of information about the properties. We encourage anyone interested to check out the calendar and consider booking early. CSA members receive a discount on accommodation, and staff are never far away to help with any of your needs while staying at TapRoot Farms.

There is so much to see and do in this beautiful Annapolis Valley. Make us your home
away from home while vacationing.