Recently livestock have received the stigma that raising and consuming them is bad for the environment. But what this assumption does is paint all meat consumption with too broad a brush. It fails to take into account how the animal was raised. The differences between grass fed in a regenerative, multi species system and in a grain fed CAFO.
Baking can seem challenging on a good day, but take away gluten, eggs, and most dairy and it can seem like an overwhelming task. After acquiring multiple adverse reactions to gluten, eggs and all dairy except butter, I had to reinvent baking. Not everything you try at first will turn out, I still have not been brave enough to try gluten free pie crust after my first attempt turned out gooey. Still have no clue how I managed that one. Be patient, and keep trying and experimenting. Embrace the challenge and have chickens on hand to eat what goes really awry.
So you are thinking of buying from a local farm, fabulous! Most people enjoy buying from a local farmer and developing a relationship, versus the mass anonymity of the grocery store. Before you make that first trip to the farm, there are some things you should know, to make it a more enjoyable experience for you and the farmer.
The Thanksgiving holiday was different for a lot of us this year, and while the reasons for it are sad, I am not upset with how our holiday dinner turned out. We had Thanksgiving meal with all the trimmings, good china and silver. Ate until we were fit to burst, then settled in to watch Miracle on 34th St.
It seems like everyone has a love/hate relationship with homemade pie crust. Either you have a pie crust recipe that you adore and works fabulously for you every time, or you can never get pie crust to work, no matter how many tips, tricks, or recipes you try. Fear not, failures happen to the best of us, I tried to make a gluten free pie crust one day and it could only be described as gooey.
Lard has been a household staple around the globe for millennia, but the advent of vegetable oils and shortenings pushed it out, claiming it was damaging and unhealthy. But, fear not you can make your own and bring back the tradition. While rendering lard can seem scary and intimidating, it’s really not as bad as it seems. It is literally chop, heat, and pour. Keep reading, and learn how to bring this pantry staple to your own kitchen.
I am spoiled by my coworkers, I really am. They are the kind of guys you can call to bail you out of the ditch or jail. Though I haven’t tried the latter yet and have no plans to .
There is a lot of debate when it comes to if beef is good for you or the environment. What complicates things, and I think causes a lot of confusion, is it depends on how the cow is raised. If the cow spent it’s life on lush pastures and didn’t eat grain, then that animal will deeply nourish your body and help the environment. If that cow was raised in a feedlot with thousands of it’s closest friends then that animal is more likely to contribute to environmental degradation, antibiotic resistance and E-coli breakouts.
Because product labeling can be so vague and meaningless, it has become more important than ever to develop a trusting relationship with your local farmer. You should be comfortable asking questions about how your food was raised, managed, fed and the farmer should be equally willing to talk to you and even show you.
Farming is one of those things where there is no substitute for hands on experience and first hand learning. Even pasture walks and farm tours are a great way to see what other farmers are doing and how they handle problems and challenges. The bad news is that it isn’t always possible to learn first hand from an expert. Books can often help fill in some of the gaps and give you ideas and starting points for things to try on your own farm. Winter often leaves a slow season when outside work diminishes and there is plenty of time for researching and learning by the wood stove with a hot drink at hand.
Welcome to Willow Farm's blog! I'm Kyle, farm manager and all things marketing