Dang, and just like that it gets so cold that we can finally accept that winter is here. After almost an entire month living on borrowed time, just waiting for the temperatures to drop and the farming season to really transition into winter chores instead of fall harvest, it happened on Tuesday night and then again, just in case you missed it, Friday night. It’s here. There is no more holding out hope that the tomatoes will last until Christmas, or the flowers will remain in the garden. Instead, we embrace our wood stoves, the short days that lend themselves to introspection and improvement, and meals that are rich and filling.
We spent last week hustling about trying to get all the things harvested, stored, and put to bed before they were fried in the deep cold we knew was coming. Winter is all about the pivot. You think have a chore lined out and, instead, the weather turns and you do something else entirely. This past week it was garlic. We were all set to plant our garlic but instead we harvested all the things. C’est la vie. Instead, with the temps rising this week into the 50s (gasp, and really!), we will get our garlic in the ground on Monday or Tuesday. Just in time to, hopefully, be tucked in with some rain mid-week.
And while the weather change is slightly annoying in the best laid plans etc., etc., you know what, we are stoked! Not just because the seasonality of farming is part of what we love about what we do, but mostly because it means that we get to see you every month for the next 7 months. Now through May 2, we are going to wind our way through eating Central Oregon style. Each month you will get an email like this from us with some news of the farm, recipe inspiration, a heads up on any events that we think you might be interested in, and so much more.
Please let us know if you have any questions and we will see you on Thursday in Sisters and Bend or Friday (11-5) and Saturday (9-3) at the Farm Store!
~ Alison and the Crew
Psst, last call on our Early Bird Summer CSA sign up special
I know we are about to start the Winter CSA, but Early Bird Summer CSA pricing will be expiring on 11/13. You can check out more information HERE and then put down your first month’s deposit. Then you don’t pay again until the last week of June, 2024. Easy peezy! Don’t forget, that if you sign up for your Summer CSA by November 13, then you and 1 guest get to join us for an exclusive dinner on the farm.
Fill Your Pantry
Have you heard of Fill Your Pantry yet? This is a bulk buying farmers market at the Deschutes County Fairgrounds on November 11, 11-3. FYP is amazing because it is a community bulk buying farmers market created so YOU can fill up your pantry, freezer, and root cellar full of great local products for the winter. On the day of there will be all sorts of shopping to be done, but FYP is most amazing for its Pre-order options. Check them out HERE and set yourself up for the long winter ahead. You will find things from Rainshadow as well as other local and regional growers and producers.
Salty Debby is coming back in December!
Last year we partnered with Keree Smith to bring our CSA members high-quality, wild-caught Alaskan sockeye salmon direct-to-consumer and we are excited to do this again. Keree, who is the fisherm*n at the helm of Salty Debby, will be at our December CSA pick ups delivering salmon to you! Check out her information below and get your order in.
Keree is an Oregon native born and raised in Government Camp on Mt. Hood. She now owns and operates her commercial gillnetter, the FV Deborah, in the wild waters of Bristol Bay, Alaska. Keree founded Salty Debby’s to educate consumers on healthy commercial fishing practices, promote and protect Bristol Bay, and deliver her summer catch. “Purchasing your sockeye fillets from Salty Debby’s not only directly supports me, your fisherman, but also supports a fisheries model based on individual and family owned harvest practices,” says Keree Smith. Purchasing from Bristol Bay promotes financial stability to a sustenance management system informed by centuries-old indigenous harvesting practices.
Learn more about Keree and fishing in Bristol Bay on her website HERE and you can pre-order a 20lb box of Sockeye Salmon Filets or a 10-lb box of Sockeye Salmon Portions from Keree HERE. We will deliver your box to you at the December CSA pick up or you can pick it up at the Farm Store December 8 or 9.
Vegetable CSA Harvest List
We always feel nervous about this section, even in the winter. Last week we looked ahead at all the things still in the ground and in storage and made our best guess for this month’s CSA. We will know for certain on Wednesday as we finalize all the packing for delivery on Thursday, but as of right now, we think the CSA will include:
upstate abundance potatoes
This one we usually feel much more confident in because the freezers let us down much less often
This month we want to set you up for Thanksgiving success. We have a chicken that you can roast in place of a turkey (or for any other reason this month), lard for your pie crust, and chicken broth for your dressing/stuffing and/or gravy. The links are for those nights when you just need an easy and quick meal.
whole roasting chicken
+/- 1 pack German Brown beef links
Veggie IDs: Upstate Abundance Potatoes & Pie Pumpkins
Upstate Abundance Potatoes
These babies are very similar to that classic the Yukon Gold. They are yellow skinned, usually between a pingpong ball and your fist in size, and have a white-ish yellow flesh. They are creamy, nutty, and buttery and are great for roasting whole, mashing, turning into a breakfast hash or really, whatever you want to do with the potato. These are some of our favorites here on the farm.
We have two types of pie pumpkins this month, the Winter Luxury and the Sugar Pie. The Winter Luxury will have a grey net of sorts on the outside of the skin and the Sugar Pie will be orange with maybe some white flecks. They are very similar and make great pumpkin purée for all your pumpkin bread, muffin, pancake, and pie needs. Or, you can always add the purée to a soup to thicken it up.
A bit of inspiration
Here are a few recipes that feature meats and vegetables you’ll find in your Winter CSA this month!
Roasting a Chicken
Here is a great recipe for a whole roasted chicken with carrots, garlic, and onions! RECIPE→
After you use your chicken, don’t forget to turn it into broth! RECIPE→
Using that Pumpkin!
Making your own pumpkin purée is so easy! and, here’s a hint, 1.5 cups homemade purée is approximately 1 can of pumpkin purée, Don’t worry if your pumpkin purée isn’t the electric orange you are used too from the can. It will taste better fresh and more brown, we promise. RECIPE→
Here are 21 recipes that Eating Well has gathered they range from dinners to baked goods, vegan to omnivore options. RECIPES→
Fennel-Apple Salad with Walnuts (You can scale this up or down depending on how many fennel you have.)
3 tablespoons lemon juice, plus more to taste
½ teaspoon fine sea salt, plus more to taste
Freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 large fennel bulbs, thinly sliced on a mandoline
2 Granny Smith apples, halved and cored, thinly sliced on a mandoline
⅓ cup fennel fronds
½ cup toasted walnuts
2½ ounces Parmesan, shaved with a vegetable peeler (about 2/3 cup)
In a small bowl, whisk together lemon juice, salt and pepper. Slowly drizzle in oil, continuously whisking, until dressing is emulsified. Taste and add more lemon juice and/or salt if needed.
In a large bowl, toss the dressing with fennel and apple. Fold in fennel fronds and walnuts. Top with Parmesan just before serving.
TIP: Dressing can be made the day before serving. Store in the refrigerator. Toss with salad ingredients up to 1 hour before serving.