November 6th 2013

Hey Friends,

I hope you are all faring well on these first chilly nights.  Emily and I are greatly enjoying what has been a stunning fall here in Waldo County.  I am just diving in (way over my head) to building a little house for us on our land in Jackson.  Should be fun!

The News.  It looks like we’ve basically got everything wrapped up for the year.  I am a little embarrassed to say it as many of my farmer friends are still cranking through the last of the harvest, but we seem to have crossed the finish line fairly early this year.  Most of our animals are now in the freezer, where daily care is quite minimal.  The sheep are eating hay in their winter lot, and the heifers are contentedly rotating in our new pastures eating round bales.  This winter feeding time is very important to our project of reviving the Great Farm.  The heifers get a new round bale every 3 and 1/2 days.  I cut the strings and unroll the bale right on the ground.  Then the heifers proceed to eat it, sleep and poop on it, and generally spread it around.  This spreads seed, carbon, and manure onto the recently cleared land, giving it everything it needs to begin growing quality grass.  Next summer, the places where I fed out these round bales will stand out as bright green streaks of vibrant grass growing among the weeds and stump sprouts, ready too feed hungry pigs, lambs, calves, deer, rabbits, turkeys, rodents, and whoever else happens by.  My goal for winter is to cover as many square feet of ground as I can with this stuff (well, one of my goals).

The Recipe.  Until recently pork chops are something I had never been great at cooking.  I used to always broil them with lots of rosemary the way my mom did when I was growing up and that is pretty good, but I wanted more variety from this cut which makes up a pretty substantial amount of a pig.  Thankfully, our good buddy Elsie over at North Branch Farm turned us on to this elegant method for turning the humble pork chop into a sublime supper.  It’s a great recipe for making people think you are a better cook than you are.  In fact, it’s a great recipe for making yourself think you are a better cook than you are!  Works for me anyways.  Here’s how it goes:  Brown the chops on both sides in a hot pan with a little fat.  Remove meat from pan and add lots of thinly sliced onions and cook gently until they are totally limp.  Remove the onions and deglaze the pan with at least a cup of red or white wine or hard or sweet apple cider.  Return the meat and onions to the pan along with a copious heap of good mustard (we often use Raye’s brown ginger) .  Mix everything loosely right in the pan and let simmer for half an hour.  A lid can come on and off depending on desired thickness of sauce.  Oh man is this good.  I have tried this with ham steaks too and the results are at least as good if not better.  Serve it with some roasted root vegetables or mashed or whatever… so sublime.

We are currently accepting orders for:
Beef:  Available Now! Quarters, Halves, and Whole Animals delivered to your family’s freezer.  Quarters weigh around 75lbs.  Portions contain a mix of all different cuts in balanced proportions.  A $50 deposit reserves your portion.
Pork:  Available Now! Whole and Half Hogs delivered to your home.  Half hogs weigh around 75lbs.  Portions contain a mix of all different fresh and cured cuts in balanced proportions.  A $50 deposit reserves your portion.

Prices available here.  Please contact PoP with questions and we can discuss how to get you what you want, when you want.

Thanks for listening, Graham