Last weekend’s promise of warm sunny days left us disappointed and chilled. The temperatures just made it above freezing Saturday morning, only to drop off by the afternoon. The sun barely making an appearance at all. Since tapping Friday we collected a little sap in the buckets, and finally enjoyed a good run Tuesday afternoon and evening.
Early Wednesday morning we all suited up in snow gear, harnessed the horses and headed up the road to the sugarbush hoping to collect before deep snow blanketed the woods and made our job of carrying sap-laden buckets to the collection stations all the more challenging.
The snow was just blowing in with a good, horizontal clip, putting the first light coating on the road and creating a perfectly slippery surface the horses could gain no traction on whatsoever. We debated the project for awhile, decided it was better not to risk the safety of the horses, especially when coming back down the steep hill with a heavy load of sap trailing behind them.
The farm truck offered no better promise of traction on such slick surfaces, and we agreed to abandon the project altogether until the storm blows through and the roads clear. We will have to wait until next week to enjoy our first fresh syrup of the season.
Snowy Morning Treat: Cream of Wheat Recipe
Cream of wheat cereal has been a big hit with folks on these chilly winter mornings. This recipe comes from Racey Bingham. Add one cup of Full and By whole wheat flour to 3-4 cups of liquid. You can use any ratio of milk to water, but the more milk the richer the cereal. Cook for 10-20 minutes, until the cereal develops a nutty flavor. This recipe will serve 4 hungry farmers.
In the Farm Shares
In the veggie share: Kohlrabi, radish, turnips, leeks, potatoes, cabbage, onions, garlic, shallots, carrots, beets, parsnips, celeriac, dried sage, wheat berries, whole wheat flour, dry beans and a new batch of kimchee (this one with sardines). Next week: maple syrup.
In the meat share: All cuts of pork and beef, half and whole broiler chickens in the freezer. Lard and leaf lard are available. We are putting “less lean” ground beef in the freezer this week. This beef largely comes from around the ribs and has a much higher fat content than the regular packages. It is a great winter ground beef—packed with juicy flavor and perfect for meat loaf and chili.
- Full and By Farm: Sugaring Season (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Full and By Farm: Super Wheat Berries (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Full and By Farm: Sprouts (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Full and By Farm: Fuzzy Winter Horses (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Full and By Farm: Pastures Coated in Ice (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)