As we ease into spring here on the farm, we are feeling the growing feels all around.
Our winter Siberian Kale in the hoops is being replaced by asian greens, lacinato kale, and green onion starts. We have direct seeded the first of the year’s fresh carrots. Our 4-season greenhouse is exploding with new starts and the germination chamber is working overtime nurturing seeds into little plant babies. Just last week we started all the nightshades for the 2022 growing season: tomatoes, eggplants, hot and sweet peppers, and tomatillos. This week we started our first summer squashes. (That’s right, we know you are secretly excited to jump back on the summer squash train of abundance!)
Sure signs of spring on the farm: Event Coordinator Mel meeting the first round of baby chicks; a dusting of snow on the cows; transplanting and trellising baby peas; seeding all the nightshades: tomatoes, eggplants, hot & sweet peppers, and tomatillos. (Photos from Nat Leader, Mel Harmon, Sarahlee Lawrence)
But where we are really feeling the joy and excitement of Spring is in our Kitchen. This month we welcomed two new staff members to the Kitchen.
Welcome Melissa Harmon, our new Event Coordinator. If you are looking to host a private event or wedding at Rainshadow Organics or have a question about any of our public events, you can reach Mel at firstname.lastname@example.org. She would love to help you plan your perfect Farm-to-Table event at the Farm.
Welcome Chef Nic Maraziti of Spaghetti Western, our new Rainshadow Organics Executive Chef. Chef Nic Maraziti is excited to produce and execute creative and enticing menus bringing our produce, meats, and grains to life through the lens of Italian cuisine. We are excited to introduce him to you more below!
Spring growth leading into a vibrant and flourishing summer. We are excited to have you as part of our community and look forward to seeing you soon either dining with us on our deck or in the garden, shopping from our Farm Stand or at our booth at the Wednesday Bend Farmers Market, or picking up your CSA.
News Flash: Events are back!
We are excited to announce the first events of 2022: all April events are loaded in the Event Calendar. Check them out, consult your friends and calendars, buy some tickets. We know you won’t be disappointed!
(Want to be the first to hear about Farm-to-Table Events at Rainshadow Organics? Sign up for our Events List!)
Introducing Chef Nic Maraziti
We wanted to spend some time introducing you to Chef Nic Maraziti today. As the new Executive Chef he will be taking the helm of the Kitchen at Rainshadow Organics. This means creating menus and dishes for our Farm-to-Table private events, weddings, brunches, and dinners as well as preparing pickles, ferments, pastas, and other value added goods for the Farm Store. We couldn’t be more excited to have Chef Maraziti join our Rainshadow Organics Community.
One of the things that really blew us away during the interview process was his relationship with each ingredient he cooks with. “I have always been inspired by the story of the food I use,” says Maraziti. “Understanding the origin and life that each component lived prior to reaching my kitchen is so important.” Nic finds inspiration in the ingredients and products themselves and the story that each of them tell individually. For him, it isn’t just separate ingredients. The terroir, the sweat and dirt and love behind each carrot, short rib, onion, or glass of wine is what makes cooking at Rainshadow so exciting and filled with potential.
Maraziti grew up in Aspen, Colorado and moved to Oregon in 2007. “Central Oregon was a great place to land at a young age. It was such an easy transition into independence,” says Maraziti. He enjoyed the foreign yet familiar feel of Central Oregon enough to return after spending over a decade in Portland honing his culinary skills while working in kitchens such as The Bent Brick, Ava Genes, Bar Casa Vale, and Tournant.
“Nostalgia, comfort, and community are at the forefront of my kitchen ethos and what drive my passion.” He credits his mom, Sherri, and grandma, Gloria, as his biggest inspirations. “The shared experience of coming together around a table. The value that a meal can bring to the loved ones around me. Just think of Thanksgiving and apple pie. That is why I love farm-to-table cooking.” The value that these women gave to a meal with family helped Maraziti realize the importance and possibility a shared meal could hold.
Chef Maraziti’s goal is to “continue trying to connect with and better understand the seasons and reasons Central Oregon is so unique.” This full story approach to ingredients and menus comes from his personal relationship with all aspects of the culinary experience. Maraziti has worked as a butcher and, from a young age, as a farmer. The personal relationship Maraziti has to ingredients comes directly from his hands-on experience behind the scenes. “I want to show the true connection between food and agriculture at the table. I want that connection to deepen what is happening on the plate for guests at the Kitchen. I want our guests to find the beauty in what is seasonally available and experience the dynamic of a food system that is more locally and seasonally driven, so they can relinquish the clutch of the commodity food system.” This passion is why we are so excited to have Chef Nic Maraziti at Rainshadow Organics.
Summer CSAs still available. Pay with your credit card or SNAP & Double Up Food Bucks. (HDFFA funding is still available!)
Why join a Rainshadow Organics summer CSA?
- We are the only Certified Organic vegetable farm in Central Oregon with a CSA.
- We believe that humans play a role in the system of our natural environment, and we take responsibility for giving back to the land that feeds us by focusing on soil fertility through cover crops, soil testing, on farm nutrient sourcing, soil conservation practices, and crop rotation to protect soil nutrients, reduce erosion, and increase organic matter.
- Food grown at Rainshadow Organics, will only travel about 30 miles to reach you. The fewer miles your groceries travel, the less carbon footprint, and the less worry you have in your kitchen.
- Shopping locally supports the Central Oregon economy. A 2017 study conducted in Central Oregon found that when a dollar was spent on a local food item, $0.76 remained in our local economy. Comparatively, each dollar spent on food from outside the region resulted in only $0.28 remaining in the local economy. Keeping these dollars in the local economy fuels jobs and profit, but it also helps to make our community more resilient to external economic forces.
You can find more information on our Summer CSAs HERE. And you can purchase your Summer CSA share HERE.
We run market style vegetable CSA. You can pickup on Wednesdays at our Farm Store or at the Wednesday Bend Farmers Market
(Photo credit: Javan Ward, 29NRTH.com)
Let us help you curate an event at our culinary destination!
Do you have a local business that is looking for a way to celebrate its employees? What about a company retreat? Would you like to plan your next family reunion on our farm? How about your best friend’s birthday party?
We are here to meet your Farm-to-Table private event needs. Send us an email at email@example.com so we can discuss your vision.