Poplin Farms

albemarle, nc

Month: August 2015

Market Stuff for August 29.

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This week, a friend dug my beautiful Meadowbrook cart out of the shipping container where it’s been stored behind a bunch of junk for 5 years. My Maggie that used to pull it had passed away and I’ve been wanting to get it out and select one of these EIGHT horses that I have here doing nothing and figure out how to teach him to ride me around in this cart.

How ’bout THAT one:

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Mind you, I can barely get one in a harness. I literally use a book. SO many straps!! Like THOUSANDS of straps! Only by the generous heart and experience of my sweet girl was I even able to go anywhere in it. Maggie was an Amish work horse before she was mine and she taught me the little I know. Should make for some hilarious “training” sessions.

Maggie May

Sweet Maggie May

I’ll be at the Charlotte Regional Farmers’ Market on Saturday ’til noonish- here’s what I’ll have:

Baby ginger, of the Yellow Hawaiian variety grown from organic seed. Also have Khing Yai ginger growing, but it’s not doing as well as the yellow.

Carola, German Butterball & Rose Finn Apple fingerling potatoes; sweet & red onions; garlic; sweet  bullhorn peppers & sweet orange snacking peppers (delicious stuffed with goat cheese), jalepenos and lots of eggplant; 3 kinds of basil; parsley & sage. Wheat berries.

And our Animal Welfare Approved, Certified Grassfed Angus beef – Beef Andouille sausage, sliced pastrami, hot dogs, corned beef and bologna all made from our Angus beef with no added nitrates or nitrites.  Ground beef, stew meat,   cube steak, oso bucco, liver, soup bones, bone-in chuck, sirloin tip roast, eye of round, sirloin steaks, NY Strips, ribeyes.

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Those are the snacking peppers!

Sooo, wheat berries. Cause for much bewilderment and confusion last Saturday at the market. One extra notable guy tossed a handful in his mouth and started crunching only to exclaim, ” THEY’RE HARD AS ROCKS!!” and gave me the  stink-eye. Dude! I JUST SAID they’re dried grains, similar to rice or beans.

They’re simple to prepare, same as dried beans. Rinse in a strainer;  put them in a pot. Sometimes you might see a small pebble or a seed, obviously you will want to take that out. Cover with water, skim off any chaff or shriveled grains that rise to the top. Cover and soak overnight; then to cook, bring to a boil and simmer 35-55 minutes until they are as firm/chewy/soft as you like. Then they can be used in salads, soups, veggie burgers, etc. They can also be frozen after cooking. Soaking neutralized the phytic acid that grains and beans have. You don’t have to soak them but it’s healthier.

Here’s a link to 10 wheat berry salads, like Cherry, Chicken and Pecan Wheat Berry Salad, or Tuna and Olive Wheat Berry Salad. I will be trying some of those soon! I just put whatever in mine, whatever is leftover from the market usually. A customer told me about one that has peaches, lime juice, parsley and pistachios which sounded amazing so I had that this week.

Or there are these:

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Wheat berries + milk in the blender = whole wheat blender pancakes! So cool!  These turned out perfect. Shane wasn’t here to cook them so they aren’t as pretty as I hoped, for the photo and all. But you can see they’re fluffy and I ate them without any syrup because I love the flavor of the whole wheat.

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You can just tell that man can cook some super fine pancakes.

Here’s a link to the whole wheat berry blender pancakes recipe. Note the instructions say to add all the ingredients except the baking powder. HEED THAT. Last year I did blender cornbread and added the baking powder to the blender. It exploded massively all over the walls, cabinets, counters, floors, me, and I was really sad to have to clean it all up and have no cornbread. I mean by the time you clean all that up, you’re over it. Just go eat some raisins.

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And an eggplant recipe because I’m trying to move all this eggplant!!My very favorite: Szechwan Eggplant (Tyler Florence). Sweet, spicy, garlicky ( I add extra garlic).  You can use your fresh ginger in this! I replace the cornstarch with arrowroot powder because cornstarch is GMO and I use Bragg’s Aminos instead of soy sauce. And I double the sauce.  AND I add a Thai basil garnish because once you’ve had that it’s impossible to do without.

See you tomorrow!

Pizza Night

This is my baby.

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It took 9 months to grow it. I’ve been waiting to make this pizza for 9 months.

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This is my third year growing wheat, and my second attempt at hard red winter wheat.  I’ve also grown spelt and soft red winter wheat. I’m super excited to make bread though, and you need hard wheat to make that. I’ve been waiting to make a REAL bread from my own wheat for 3 years. I already mixed the dough, with freshly milled flour, honey, yeast, salt, water and milk. It’s in the fridge right now!! Maybe I can bake it Sunday morning.

I was so excited to try this wheat. It was such a long wait! I milled the flour, then I opened some wine and spent all of Thursday night making pizzas.

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I made pesto for the base.

I roasted garlic.

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That’s how I roast garlic. Roasted garlic in 6 minutes. I only have one night, not 8 million years.

I caramelized onions, and picked sweet peppers. I grilled andouille and sliced it thin. I had some fresh mozz from Uno Alla Volta.

I baked our pizzas on the stone my mom used when I was little. They were beautiful. It was dark by the time they were finished so my photo turned out greenish;  I’ll have to post a lamb instead:

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I’ll be at the Charlotte Regional Farmers’ Market tomorrow with my wheat berries, eggplant, red & sweet onions, 3 kinds of potatoes, garlic, sweet peppers, 3 kinds of basil and our Animal Welfare Approved, Certified Grassfed beef.

See you there!

 

 

 

 

Market Stuff for August 15

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I’ll be at the Charlotte Regional Farmers’ Market on Saturday from 8am til noonish.

I have: German Butterball, Carola and fingerling potatoes; basil, parsley, peppers, sweet and red onions, garlic.

Our Animal Welfare Approved, Certified Grassfed Angus beef – NEW! Beef Andouille sausage, and sliced pastrami is back. Hot dogs, corned beef and bologna all made from our Angus beef with no added nitrates or nitrites.  Ground beef, stew meat, philly steak, cube steak, oso bucco, brisket, liver, soup bones, bone-in chuck, sirloin tip roast, eye of round, sirloin steaks, NY Strips, ribeyes, filets, skirt, flat iron.

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Whatever she has in her beak is for her nest full of babies!

I just got a pallet of organic potting mix, in 2.8 cubic foot bags (big bags!) It’s Fafard Organic Mix #30 (now Sungro) and I paid about $14/bag for it if anyone needs some. I use it for starting seeds as well as transplants and potted plants/containers, and to mix with compost in my raised beds. It has a small amount of organic starter fertilizer in it.

This week I went to a 3 day soil workshop with Neil Kinsey put on by Slow Food. He’s the guy that does the soil tests I like, Kinsey Ag. They use the Albrecht method of soil balancing. If you’re having your garden tested for nutrients I really recommend him. Just like with anything else, you get what you pay for.  YIKES the stories he tells. Makes you wonder what we’re coming to.

I was just talking with someone the other day about how our planet is changing, and the way things worked as far as farming 8 or even 5 years ago, it’s not the same.  Neil was basically saying the same thing, the atmosphere is different and plants don’t get the same nutrients from it, and the soils are so  deficient and even fertilizers are different.  He’s emphatic about the importance of keeping soils balanced with ammendments for healthy plants, animals and us.  I was surprised to learn the amount of nutrients each crop removes from the soil. Don’t worry, I’m on it!!

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This turkey family lives around here, one day it was really hot and they were crossing the pasture (they just walk everywhere, which seems strange doesn’t it?) and they stopped to rest in the shade. Seven youngsters!

 

You Shall Not Pass!

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Uh ok.   Gaaah the montrous spiders blocking all the aisles in the tomato hoop house.  Their massive webs are like 12 gauge wire,  I got clotheslined about 4 times this morning.  I read they block UV rays.  It’s been too hot in there anyway so the few surviving tomatoes are split and moldy and the plants have dropped their blossoms so it’s over; besides, the mosquitos are HORRIFIC in there because I don’t empty the rain out of the side curtains, and they swarm me the whole time. #denguefever

I’ll be at the Charlotte Regional Farmers Market on Saturday and this is what I’ll have:

okra, peppers, onions- red, sweet & cipollini; 3 kinds of basil, parsley, cherry tomatoes, potatoes- Rose Finn Apple fingerlings, German Butterball & Carola; garlic.

Our Animal Welfare Approved, Certified Grassfed Angus beef – hot dogs, beer brats, corned beef and bologna all made from our Angus beef with no added nitrates or nitrites.  Ground beef, stew meat, philly steak, cube steak, short ribs, oso bucco, brisket, liver, soup bones, bone-in chuck, sirloin tip roast, eye of round, sirloin steaks, NY Strips, ribeyes, filets, skirt, flank, flat iron.

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Sweet potatoes, part deux.  We re-planted in mid-July after the deer ate everything from the first planting. We put them near our house this time so we can keep an eye out. Our neighbor, Jenny from Carlea Farms came and helped me plant them.

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This is milo (grain sorghum) I’ll use in my chicken feed. Half the field had to be used for the sweet potatoes so I won’t have enough milo to grow out any pigs this year which is super sad. It’s looking so beautiful, I like to just sit there and watch it.

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After many weeks of bugging the hell out of Shane, he finally sawed the boards for the bar top for my latest Pinterest obsession to annoy him, a patio bar. Woohoo!  Will probably be finished just in time for Christmas! Boo.

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So if you’re not buying organic when you’re at the grocery store, or live in the boonies where grocery stores are sad,  I hope you make sure you’re checking the bag/box/package for this seal. We don’t have GMO labeling yet but we do have non-GMO labels.

There is a phone app for this, which is a good resource but it’s kind of redundant when you can just look for the logo.

IT’S SUPER IMPORTANT YOU GUYS! Why can’t I be the boss of everyone.

A recipe to try:  Crash Hot Potatoes – I made them with German Butterballs. Mmmmm, lots of crispy edges!

See you guys tomorrow!!

The greatest disinformation campaign since public relations was invented.

That is the description of an article I just read in Acres USA magazine regarding the FDA’s promotion of GMOs.

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But first!

I’ll be at the Charlotte Regional Farmers’ Market tomorrow. Here’s what I’ll have:

okra, sweet peppers, onions- red, sweet & cipollini; 3 kinds of basil, heirloom tomatoes and cherry tomatoes, 2 kinds of eggplant, potatoes- Rose Finn Apple fingerlings, German Butterball & Carola; garlic.

Our Animal Welfare Approved, Certified Grassfed Angus beef – hot dogs, beer brats, corned beef and bologna all made from our Angus beef with no added nitrates or nitrites.  Ground beef, stew meat, philly steak, short ribs, oso bucco, brisket, liver, soup bones, bone-in chuck, sirloin tip roast, eye of round, sirloin steaks, NY Strips, ribeyes, filets, skirt, flank, flat iron.

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Ok, you know I don’t like to get too serious about stuff. I mean I keep up with what’s going on, especially regarding the state of our food  in America + elsewhere, but I don’t like to worry about things. I do my best  and contribute to good in the world in my own small ways, and I feel happy about that.

But I just read a new article and it’s just disgusting.   I thought I was up on all the GMO stuff, and the lack of FDA oversight and all that but this is off the chain.  We’re bringing copies to the market, I hope you will read it and pass it on to someone you know. I hope everyone will stop buying GMO foods so that they will go away. You know that virtually everything that is not certified organic is or contains genetically modified ingredients, right? I’m talking processed foods, anything from the store that is not in the produce aisle, and even many of those fruits and veggies are.

Have a quick look at this  list of grocery store products containing GMO ingredients. Even if you already buy organic, just looking at the list is pretty frightening. So to avoid genetic engineering in your grocery store food, just buy organic. GMOs are not allowed in organics. Buy the rest of your food from your local farmers that are growing clean food.

This lawyer, Steven Druker,  tells how a GMO soil bacteria was engineered to help digest nutrients but it killed all the plants. Can you imagine if that was released and then it began to multiply? He tells how the FDA is illegally approving and even promoting GMO foods while intentionally  giving the public the false impression that it is testing them and they are safe, when in fact their own scientists are telling them there are significant problems with these foods. Druker sued the FDA to force them to release their internal documents on genetically engineered foods. He has scanned the forms onto his website.

You can read the documents about the GMO tomato that caused stomach lesions and death in animal testing but was released anyway. Even though it contained an antibiotic resistant gene that the FDA’s own scientists said should not be released into the general population since that particular antibiotic is widely used medically.

Here is a link to his interview with Dr Mercola, it’s a 2 part video.

He shows how politically appointed administrators had covered up the extensive warnings of their own scientists about the risks of these foods, lied about the facts, and then ushered these  products onto the market in violation of mandates of federal food safety law.   -I’m paraphrasing from his website here.

Did you know that by law these foods are supposed to be proven safe but actually  “in practice, nobody even has to inform the FDA if they’re going to dump a genetically engineered food product on our market, let alone do any testing. ”

I did not know that. I thought they at least had to submit some kind of fake studies or a bogus approval form or something. I guess it’s just  a free-for-all out there, unless you’re applying for organic certification then you’re peering over a stack of paperwork 2 feet high.

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Purple basil, Thai basil, and the glorious queen of all basils, Genovese.

 

 

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