Friday, November 20, 2009

Polyface Turkey Recipe from Sheri

Many of you have been asking how to best prepare your Polyface pastured turkey. There are many ways of baking a turkey and if you have a favorite method, then just disregard this post and go with it. This is my favorite way to prepare a turkey.
This recipe was taken from the Joy of Cooking cookbook.

First, I like to brine my turkey. To brine means to soak the turkey in a salt water solution. It helps the bird to retain moisture during roasting and gives a little extra flavor.You will need:
  • 1 Polyface turkey, 14-24 lbs (you can adjust the recipe for a smaller bird as necessary)
  • 1 clean bucket or container large enough to immerse the whole bird
  • 2 -3 lbs of salt (I use kosher salt, you can also use table salt)
  • 2 -3 gallons of water
Basically you want a brine with 1 lb of salt for every gallon of water. Place the turkey into the bucket and pour the salt/water solution over it until it is completely immersed. Place in a very cool spot for about 4-6 hours. I usually cover mine with a wet cloth or weight the turkey down, it has a tendency to float.

After the soaking, remove the turkey from the salt water and rinse thoroughly, inside and out.
I usually throw a quartered onion into the cavity of the bird for baking. I also leave the legs tucked.
  • 4-6 Tbsp butter, melted, plus more for basting later
Brush the turkey all over with the butter, then lay it breast side down on a wire rack in a roasting pan. Balls of foil are great for keeping it upright if you don't have an official turkey roaster.
  • 2/3 cup water
Pour water into the bottom of the roasting pan.
Bake at 325 degrees with the breast side down for about 2 hours, basting the legs and back at least twice with more butter.

Carefully turn the turkey so that the breast is up and continue baking until your thermometer reads 165 degrees - about 30-60 minutes more depending on the size of your turkey. Be sure to continue basting it with either more butter or the juices of the pan. (I found that my 14 lb bird was nearly done and just finished browning the skin at this point)

Note from Joy of Cooking: "If the turkey approaches doneness before the breast has browned, increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees for the last 5-10 minutes of roasting."

Remove the turkey to a serving platter and let stand for 20-40 minutes before carving.

Happy Thanksgiving! God's blessings on you and your family.

Sheri

PS. If you have a favorite turkey recipe to share, I would love to try it out and I'm sure other would too! Just drop me an email and let me know.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Thoughts from Joel

A documentary videographer from Spain spent the day at Polyface today, getting pictures of cow moves, poultry processing, feathernet moving, and new pastured poultry salad bars. He interviewed me for an hour and as the conversation went along, he asked: "Is there a war?"

He was responding to my explanation of industrial food's attacks on pasture-based livestock as anti-science, Luddite, and threatening to the world's food production. After all, our chickens commune with Red Winged blackbirds who take our chicken's diseases to the science-based Tyson chicken houses, destroying the planet's food supply.

Anyone who thinks the heritage based, nutrient dense, pasture-based, low-energy, life-honoring model is winning has not kept up with the new attacks from corporate food. As long as our side stays below 1 percent of the food supply, we're just an annoying gnat. But as people drop
out of industrial food, the food lord elitists ensconced in their corporate castles unleash their campaign to marginalize, demonize, and criminalize us.

Perhaps one of the funniest questions people ask me out on the speaking trail is: "How do your neighbors feel about you? Do they just come over to learn all the time?" Folks, not only do they not want to know what we're doing, they actually believe the industrial food elitists who say we
threaten their livelihood with disease and will eventually destroy the planet's food supply. To be fair, not all of our neighbors, but most.

Shortly after the videographer left, Wendy, our gatekeeper, called and said the man I had lined up only an hour earlier to bring us a load of sawdust on Monday was canceling
because of the way we abused our cows. I called him back and he refused to bring us sawdust at any price because of FOOD INC. He said what we represented was so reprehensible that he could not imagine selling us sawdust. I responded: "Well, I guess we know where you stand." To which he replied: "Yes indeed. If you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything."
Animal abuse? Of course. If you don't vaccinate, medicate, hormone inject--use all the science based techniques--you're abusing your animals.

In other words, I'm sure this man would support police action against Polyface to protect the Shenandoah Valley's agriculture from our anti-scientific methods.

You moms who refuse to get your children vaccinated for H1N1 are abusing your children just like I abuse our cows. The thought of denying them the latest science-based drugs is an act of war. Yes, we are at war. Obviously my sawdust guy has picked his side. And I've picked mine.
How about you?

Joel Salatin, October 9, 2009

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Joel responds

The poor people question is the second most frequently asked question
after "can we feed the world?" So let's
address it.

First, enough money is in the food system for everyone to enjoy safe,
nutrient dense food generally from local sources.
When you look at the price per pound of candy, potato chips, TV
dinners, and Cocoa-Puffs, you will find that they are
NOT cheap. And if you factor in nutrition, they are definitely not
cheap. If you took the money currently spent on Coca-Cola,
Kentucky Fried Chicken, and McDonald's and spent it instead on local
nutrient-dense direct-from-the-farm food, the
system contains plenty of money to eat well. Processed, snack, and
junk foods are not cheap, and take up valuable
money from the food system that could be spent better. Show me the
poor family that doesn't have soft drinks and
potato chips in their house, and then we can talk real issues. For
most of our lives, Teresa and I have been below the
poverty level, by choice. I do not believe government statistics, now
do I believe advocacy agency statistics. So off
the top, let's realize that poverty is extremely subjective. And when
someone says they can't afford our food who spends
nothing on potato chips and soft drinks, then I'll entertain their
questions.

Second, most of the problem is a lack of domestic culinary skills.
This can be from ignorance, negligence, or laziness,
none of which has anything to do with money. Plenty of busy people
cook unprocessed food. Premium Idaho baking
potatoes occupy a tiny box in the produce section and sell for 10 cents
a pound. Two aisles over, microwavable frozen
premade French fries occupy 150 feet of freezer space, and sell for
$1.25 per pound. A couple more aisles over,
potato chips in bags occupy another 150 feet of shelf space and sell
for $4 a pound. That's what Polyface hamburger
costs. I am not willing to concede that most people in poverty are
really putting effort into their home kitchens to prepare
unprocessed meals.

Third, if local food were not prejudicially regulated, the price
differences would not be as apparent as they are. Most of
the premium pricing on local, nutrient-dense food has nothing to do
with production, but rather the nonscalable application
of onerous, capricious regulations. Infrastructure and paperwork
requirements that big operations spread over thousands
of pounds or gallons become exorbitant to a small business. For
example, Polyface last year tipped over into the mandatory
workmen's compensation program due to the number of employees.
Normally, a business our size would pay $3-5,000 a
year, but we pay more than $10,000. Why? Because we're classified as
a farm, and by regulation, a farm cannot have a
delivery driver who handles boxes. The ONLY driver a farm can have is
a high risk live animal hauler, right at the top end
of the actuarial risk category. So who pays for that extra $6,000?
The customer. If you want to see more evidence of this
capricious and asinine regulatory climate, please read my book:
EVERYTHING I WANT TO DO IS ILLEGAL. The fact is
that were it not for this regulatory climate, neighborhood food systems
would run circles around Wal-Mart both in quality
and price. And impoverished city food deserts would spout oases of
entrepreneurial local food networks, at a price folks
could more easily afford. The people demanding more invasive and
onerous food safety regulations, for example, actually
hate poor people because they advocate policies that create further
price prejudice against smaller scale food businesses.

Finally, this issue has a subconscious corollary that food should be
cheap. I don't have any problem with cheap food; I only
have a problem with good food being cheap. How many people classified
as poor have a flat screen TV? Or iphones? Why
doesn't anyone complain about the price of Cadillacs or plasma TVs?
You get what you pay for, and if you only pay for junk,
you get junk. And if you only pay for things that destroy the earth or
cheapen life, then that's the world you're creating. You
can make do on a lot less if you look, just like scrounging for
anything. If you ask for seconds on tomatoes, or can the mountain
of tomatoes local farmers are throwing away just before frost when the
plants explode with end-of-season premonitional bounty,
you can get premium local vegetables by the bushel for very little
money. Eating well does not require you to eat organic
tomatoes shipped air freight from Peru in January. You can eat better
by canning, drying, or freezing local seasonal bounty
and enjoying it in the off season. But that means getting busy,
refusing to be a victim, and being responsible. Unfortunately,
these good character qualities are not encouraged in the modern
American welfare class. When I see food stamps used
for TV dinners so that personal money can purchase beer and cigarettes,
I admit to being a bit dubious about the alleged
plight of poor people. And if everyone who didn't need to be weren't,
the numbers would be so small that some philanthropy
would solve the genuine problem--just like it used to.

Bottom line, I've found that I usually have money for what I consider
essential. If I really want to make something happen,
I'll passionately try to make it happen, without a handout and without
whining. That would probably be a good way for more
of us to live, don't you think?

~Joel Salatin

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Join the discussion

Yesterday at 3:30 pm, I posted the following question on the Polyface Farm Facebook page. Within 18 hours, we received 32 comments. I wanted to give you all a chance to comment on this as well.

To set the stage - this was posted 2 weeks ago: Michael Pollen says that cheap food is an illusion. The cost of food will be paid somewhere, whether it be the environment, the land or your health.

JOIN THE DISCUSSION: If cheap food is an illusion, do you think it's possible for "poor people" to afford healthy food? How could someone who doesn't have a lot of money buy healthy food?

Monday, July 20, 2009

Lemon Curd (pudding)

1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup juice from citrus (lemon, lime, grapefruit or blood orange are great) plus the zest from the juiced citrus
6 tbsp butter
3 Polyface eggs, beaten

Place all but eggs into a double boiler and whisk thoroughly for 5 minutes until the butter is melted and the sugar seems incorporated. Then stream in the beaten eggs and continue whisking until it bubbles and thickens, about 10 more minutes. Serve either hot or cold. It thickens a lot if refrigerated. I just put it in a bowl with fresh berries and garnish with a mint leaf. A GREAT way to get a little protein into the kids ;o)

Submitted by Jessica from South Silver Spring Buying Club

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If you have a recipe that you would be willing to share with us, please send us a copy to sheri (at) polyfaceyum (dot) com

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Polyface Patron Wednesday

Name: David

Buying club: Williamsburg

Age: 71

How did you first hear about Polyface? Through Elwood Thompson’s.

How long have you been a Polyface customer? Since Sept 2006.

Have you ever been to the farm? Yes, multiple times.


About the picture: Well, you can’t make it out in this picture, but the cart and I were ‘made’ in the same year.


What farm animal describes you the best and why? Well, my Chinese birth sign is the ox.


What is your favorite Polyface product and why? Chicken broilers. It’s impossible to produce anything other than a perfect meal (one can mess up Polyface beef if you’re not careful).


What is your favorite book and why do you like it? The Rubaiyat: it’s elegantly done.


If you could live anywhere in the world for a year, where would it be? Ignoring places where I’ve already lived for a time, perhaps Spain.


Share how you met your spouse. On an evening when I had nothing planned, and was feeling lonely in my new home, I went looking for a friend from work and found him (as expected) in the bar of the Intercontinental Hotel in Frankfurt, Germany. After some conversation, he inquired of the bartender, “Where would you go to meet a girl here?”

He said, “Will you promise not to laugh?”. We promised, and suggested “Der Bal des einsamen Herzen” (the ‘lonely hearts club’). We laughed, and he said no, it’s the best place. Be there by nine and you will meet someone by ten. We went, and there I met my wife, who was also there for the first time, with some friends, looking for a place to relax after studying for some hours for the next days’ final exams. We married 4 months later.


What are you most passionate about? At the moment, edible food.


What is your occupation? I’m a retired engineer. For much of the last 30 years of my career, I worked on aircraft control software for NASA. What did you like or dislike about your job? The work was very interesting and challenging, but there was resistance to new ideas.


How many children do you have? 3


What type of pet(s) do you have? 1 dog

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Every Wednesday, we would like to highlight one of our patrons. You are the folks who make Polyface succeed. You are the ones who vote with your food dollar for land healing, healthiness and educated food-buyers. To our every day heros - we thank you! Join in the fun! If you would like to participate, please leave a comment with your email address.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Joel's trip to NY with Chris Valerio

Yesterday I flew to New York City to be Chris Valerio's guest on her
Bloomberg Television show, airing this weekend
at the following times:

Friday night at 6:00pm, 8:00pm, 11:30pm ET.

The show re-airs Saturday at 1:30am, 2:30am, 4:30am,7:30am, 11:30am, 1:00pm, 3:30pm, 5:30pm, 6:30pm, 10:30pm and Sunday at 12:30am, 3:00am, 4:00am, 6:30am, 8:30am, 9:30am, 11:00am, 1:00pm, 3:30pm.


I left the farm at 3:30 a.m., caught a flight out of Charlottesville
and they sent a car to pick me up at LaGuardia at a little before noon.
I arrived at the Bloomberg media building, went through one security
station, then to a second where a camera takes your picture and
they give you a picture ID to hang around your neck to go through the
third security--the last one before the elevators. I went on the
green elevator (they are all color coded) to the 6th floor and the
producer of the show, Robin, met me and escorted me to the make-up
room.

After being properly powdered and blow dried in the makeup room, they
took me to the little studio and in a couple of minutes Chris, the
host, appeared.
As usual with these things, time never allows real exploration of any
issues, but it's the best I could do. The last segment was of my
choosing so I asked her to ask me about the industrial food backlash
toward small and heritage-based farmers and food systems.
As you can tell, it was thrown in at the last second and I didn't have
time to plug the Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund, but
at least I planted a seed that the local food euphoria is not over the
hump by a long shot.

As soon as we were done, they whisked me back downstairs to another
waiting car, who took me back to LaGuardia and home.
I was in New York City all of about 2 hours--long enough for me. My
first driver was a turban-headed Middle Easterner and my
second driver was a South Korean--both interesting and both car paint
wipers like all the for-hire drivers in New York. Always good
to get back to dirt roads and cows and green grass.

By Joel Salatin, July 9, 2009

Friday, July 3, 2009

True Food: A Love Poem by Robyn O'Brien

As headlines swirl and climates whirl
And Wall Street finds its feet
There’s one refrain that doesn’t change
“Mommy, what’s there to eat?”

Well listen child, I’ll tell you what,
That’s no small query there.
Come over here, and sit right down,
In fact, pull up a chair.

Your question, dear one, though you ask,
With all good heart intended,
Is fraught with complications that
Aren’t often comprehended.

What we call ‘food’ is not the same
As what our grandmas ate.
Would she have had yellow 5 & 6
On her child’s dinner plate?

What about ‘acesulfame potassium’?
Can you pronounce that, love?
Did grandmother have a jar of that
In her cupboards up above?

What would she think of all these things
You children eat today?
Perhaps she’d bow her gentle head
And just begin to pray…..

But since she is no longer here,
It is up to you and me,
To be the ones who will inspire
Her True Food Legacy.

Perhaps as we begin this quest
We might ‘cut the colors’ first?
Or try to avoid things we can’t pronounce?
Tell me, which do you think is worse?

You see, my little one, in our hands,
In our minds and in our hearts,
We have the ability to affect remarkable change
So, love, where should we start?

Written by Robyn O’Brien, July 3, 2009



Robyn O'Brien is a mom and author of The Unhealthy Truth. She is also the founder of AllergyKids. She has been featured in the New York Times and has appeared on CNN, Good Morning America, and the CBS Early Show and Evening News. She lives with her family in Boulder, Colorado.

To read more of Robyn, you can also check out her blog.



Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Polyface Patron Wednesday

Name: Jennifer Apple
  • Buying club: South Alexandria
  • Age: 29
  • How did you first hear about Polyface? I read the book In Defense of Food and The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan, and I was impressed by the description of Polyface’s philosophy and thrilled that such a farm was nearby!
  • How long have you been a Polyface customer? A little more than a year, I believe.
  • Have you ever been to the farm? No.
What farm animal describes you the best and why? The earthworm. You’ll find me behind the scenes, unassuming, hardworking and often overlooked, but my contribution to most things, whether it is at work or at home, is invaluable.
  • What is your favorite book and why do you like it? George Orwell’s 1984. It’s a sobering reminder of what humans are capable of doing to each other when the thirst for power gets out of hand.

  • What is your favorite time of day? When I arrive home from work. My son always greets me with a running hug and I get a kiss from my husband. What could be better than that?
  • If you could live anywhere in the world for a year, where would it be? On Polyface farm! I’d love to see it from inside, do the worthwhile work, and reap the tasty rewards. Anywhere else? I’d probably pick the Maine seashore.
  • Share a favorite recipe.

BLT Royale

Serves 2

Ingredients:

4 – Slices whole wheat or sourdough bread

6 – 8 – Slices of thick bacon

2 – Green lettuce leaves

4 – Thin tomato slices

Peanut Butter (Chunky is best!)

To Assemble:

1. Fire up the skillet and cook the bacon slices.

2. Toast the bread.

3. Slather the peanut butter on both of the warm bread slices.

4. Layer the lettuce leaf, three or four slices of bacon and two tomatoes on one slice and top with the other.

5. Bite and enjoy the nutty goodness that complements the hot bacon and juicy tomatoes.

6. Send one to me via express mail!

  • Complete the statement “I recommend…” For anyone who is tired of taking the blue pill and wishes to give the red pill a try (cultural reference here is The Matrix movie series), I recommend checking out the website written by George Ure called www.urbansurvival.com (a blog verson of the same site is at www.urbansurvival.com/blog). Another pair of websites for those of you keeping dibs on food issues: Locally (Ed Bruske)- http://www.theslowcook.com/ Nationally (Marion Nestle)- http://www.foodpolitics.com/
  • What one Polyface product would you most recommend? I totally recommend the chicken wings. They are meaty and huge, and they cook up nice and crisp in the deep fryer. Well worth the price compared to the bedraggled things they sell in the supermarkets.

Note from Jennifer:
I enjoy the challenge of eating local. It has been an eye opener how tasteless and bad for you many of the products are that are sold in the supermarkets. It is surprising how little people know about what is in these “foods”. And then to see the lobbying on behalf of the industries affected with bad PR…it’s all quite interesting (an example is the counter-campaign currently under way in magazines by high fructose corn syrup manufacturers that mocks the idea that average people like your hairdresser know better than say, a doctor or nutritionist, who, ostensibly, agree with manufacturers that HFCS is really not the villain it’s starting to be portrayed as…sighs.) Anyways, my tastebuds have never been so delighted as they are now. We get meat as we can from Polyface; milk, bread and yogurt from a local creamery; and we subscribe to a local CSA that delivers in season produce they grow every other week for the entire year. Learning to live and eat “in season” is an interesting experience! Come try it!

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Every Wednesday, we would like to highlight one of our patrons. You are the folks who make Polyface succeed. You are the ones who vote with your food dollar for land healing, healthiness and educated food-buyers. To our every day heros - we thank you! Join in the fun! If you would like to participate, please leave a comment with your email address.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Joel's visit to Washington

"If you just looked inside the USDA, you would find tremendous support
for local food," said Senator Mark
Udall to me yesterday, June 17. I responded: "I have looked, and it's
not a pretty picture . . . " then somebody cut
off my microphone and that was the end.

I think I have reached the nadir of my trust in government. Some
background: a couple of months ago, I received
an invitation from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to paticipate in
the Green Jobs Leadership Summit hosted by the
Senate Democratic Caucus in the Russell Senate Office Building. His
invitation read: "This half-day event will feature
discussions focused on creating clean energy jobs and supporting the
new green economy. Because of your company's
leadershi8p in the clean energy and green manufacturing industries,
Senator Webb [Va. Senator Jim Webb] has nominated
you to represent Virginia at the Green Jobs Leadership Summit." A
breakfast reception would begin at 8 a.m.

I received a duplicate invitation directly from Sen. Webb. Smelling a
rat (partisans backslapping and me a member of
a voiceless mob) I contacted Sen. Webb's office for clarification and
was assured that I might even have five minutes with
Vice President Joe Biden, but surely I would have plenty of face time
with senators. Each senator was allowed one nominee,
and I was Webb's representative. That was kind of cool, and with a
total potential of 100 people from across the U.S., this
sounded like indeed it might be something where I could get my message
to some high levels.

So yesterday morning I left the house a little after 3:30 a.m. and
traveled to Washington. I arrived and went immediately
to the breakfast, which was chalk milk, ice water, coffee, orange
juice, bagels, and hydrogenated pastries. Breakfast? Where
is the raw milk, local apple juice, bacon, sausage, pastured eggs? I
settled for ice water.

The room was surrounded by slick corporate poster advertisements for
for alternative energy manufacturers, supported
by a cadre of CEOs and their staffs. Hardly enough room to move
around. Soon we were told to find our seats and Sen. Debbie
Stabenow convened the meeting. The front table was cordoned off and
guarded by security until VP Joe Biden came. He
spoke about the wonderful things the stimulus package was doing, then
shook hands with about 8 senators in a reserved
section, then was quickly whisked away. So much for face time.

What followed were two panels, primarily senators, simply giddy over
how they were rescuing the country. The senators
would flow in for their 1 minute of clapping praise from the industry
audience, then gave 3 minutes of Democratic salvation
exuberance, then quickly left for more important matters. Once each
panel finished their preramble (Ha!) monologues, just
a few minutes were left for the lucky few who could navigate to the
microphone in a nearly unreachable corner to ask questions
and make comments to the panel.

Since we were out of time by the time this was allowed, three or more
people would give their comments and then
someone from the panel would respond--always about how we needed to do
more. I finally realized that this was all about
the Democrats (I'm sure Republicans do it all the time too) convening
industry people to become their political cloud to shove
through the Democratic agenda.

No face time. No interaction. I was just supposed to listen, catch
the euphoria bug, and leave elated and thankful that
the Democrats were finally in charge. Of course, I don't think the
Republicans would be any better, but the postulating and
self aggrandizement was both disgusting and palpable. Anyway, I
finally decided to leave at the end of the second panel.
As I walked out, I realized I had navigated to the end of the comment
line and since only 6 people were in front of me, I might
actually get to say something. So I waited.

`And they got to me. Here is the best I remember what I said:

I'm amazed that after half a day of talk about green jobs and energy,
I have not heard the word food, the word farm, or
the word agriculture. I represent the local food movement and the
pastured livestock movement, and we are tried of being
marginalized, criminalized, and demonized by the USDA and this
government. I'm a bioterrorist for letting my chickens
run in the pasture. What good is it to have the freedom to own a gun,
assemble, or worship if I can't choose the fuel to feed
my internal 3 trillion member community of bacteria to give me the
energy to go shoot, pray, or preach? I propose that we
have a Constitutional Amendment that allows every American citizen the
right to choose their food. Government bureaucrats
should not come between my mouth and my 3 trillion member internal
community."

`Other speakers had waxed on about health care and all sorts of
things. I couldn't have talked more than one minute,
when Sen. Udall interrupted with: "If you just looked inside the USDA,
you would find tremendous support for local food."
I was the only speaker interrupted, the only one who mentioned food,
farming, or agriculture, and the only one who didn't
ask for more government money. And when I responded that I had looked
inside and it was not a pretty picutre . . . they
cut my microphone off. Enough of you, Salatin. We don't want your
type around here.

Thus endeth Mr. Salatin going to Washington. I think I'll write some
more books.

By Joel Salatin

Monday, June 15, 2009

Fresh now available through Polyface!


FRESH documentary producer Ana Joanes has given Polyface a special a pre-release offer of the DVD for a mere $15. It will not be available elsewhere, except at Growing Power, for at least a couple of months.
If you need a copy shipped by mail to you or a friend, please mail us a check for $18 to cover shipping & handling fees. Be sure to include your shipping address.

One of the reasons the Salatins appreciate this film is because it truly captures the spirit and joy of Polyface. We think anyone who wants to feel great about participating in the local and heritage food revolution will love to see this documentary and share it with friends. We're offering you a headstart on being able to see and enjoy this wonderful film. Go for it!

Excerpt from the back cover:

FRESH celebrates the farmers, thinkers and business people across America who are re-inventing our food system. Each has witnessed the rapid transformation of our agriculture into an industrial model, and confronted the consequences: food contamination, environmental pollution, depletion of natural resources, and morbid obesity. Forging healthier, sustainable alternatives, they offer a practical vision for a future of our food and our planet.

FRESH addresses an ethos that has been sweeping the nation and is a call to action America has been waiting for.

Have you seen it already? What was your thoughts on the movie? Leave a comment and let us know.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Polyface Patron Wednesday


Name: Krista Swetz
Buying club: Annapolis
Age: 29
How did you first hear about Polyface? Omnivore’s Dilemma
How long have you been a Polyface customer? One year
Have you ever been to the farm? No, but I would LOVE to.

What one item in the kitchen best describes you and your personality? My baking stone, versatile, handy, dependable and well seasoned.

What farm animal describes you the best and why? I am not really sure, but my husband says a mother hen b/c I like to take care of people.

What is your biggest pet peeve?
Poor manners

What is your greatest accomplishment?
Packing up a u-haul at 22 and moving by myself from upstate NY to Annapolis.

What is your hobby? Playing tennis, cooking, hiking, sewing

What is your favorite Polyface product and why? Roasting Chickens, because I have the BEST recipe for glazed roast chicken. Also, it is the best value and so versatile.

What is your favorite book and why do you like it? Where the Red Fern Grows, I read it in 6th grade and it is the first book I remember crying while reading

What is your favorite time of day?
Morning, between 6:45 and 7:15

What is your favorite color? Kelly Green

What is your favorite season?
Summer

What is your favorite food? Sushi- I can’t make it myself and pasta.

If you could live anywhere in the world for a year, where would it be? Tuscany, Italy, I love it there.

If you could you try anything and not fail (and money was no object), what dream would you attempt?
Swimming in the Great Barrier Reef

Share a favorite recipe.

Glazed Roast Chicken
compliments of Cook’s Illustrated

If using table salt, reduce the amount to 2½ teaspoons. For best results, use a 16-ounce can of beer. A larger can will work, but avoid using a 12-ounce can, as it will not support the weight of the chicken. A vertical roaster can be used in place of the beer can, but we recommend only using a model that can be placed in a roasting pan. Taste your marmalade before using it; if it is overly sweet, reduce the amount of maple syrup in the glaze by 2 tablespoons. Trappist Seville Orange Marmalade is the test kitchen’s preferred brand.

Ingredients

Chicken

1

whole chicken (6 to 7 pounds), giblets removed and discarded

5

teaspoons kosher salt (see note)

1

teaspoon baking powder

1

teaspoon ground black pepper

1

(16-ounce) can beer (see note)

Glaze

1

teaspoon cornstarch

1

tablespoon water

1/2

cup maple syrup

1/2

cup orange marmalade (see note)

1/4

cup cider vinegar

2

tablespoons unsalted butter

2

tablespoons Dijon mustard

1

teaspoon ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. FOR THE CHICKEN: Place chicken breast-side down on work surface. Following illustrations on page 8, use tip of sharp knife to make 1-inch incisions below each thigh and breast along back of chicken (four incisions total). Using fingers or handle of wooden spoon, carefully separate skin from thighs and breast. Using metal skewer, poke 15 to 20 holes in fat deposits on top of breasts and thighs. Tuck wingtips underneath chicken.

Combine salt, baking powder, and pepper in small bowl. Pat chicken dry with paper towels and sprinkle evenly all over with salt mixture. Rub in mixture with hands, coating entire surface evenly. Set chicken, breast-side up, on rimmed baking sheet and refrigerate, uncovered, 30 to 60 minutes. Meanwhile, adjust oven rack to lowest position and heat oven to 325 degrees.
  1. Open beer can and pour out (or drink) about half of liquid. Spray can lightly with nonstick cooking spray and place in middle of roasting pan. Slide chicken over can so drumsticks reach down to bottom of can, chicken stands upright, and breast is perpendicular to bottom of pan. Roast until skin starts to turn golden and instant-read thermometer inserted in thickest part of breast registers 140 degrees, 75 to 90 minutes. Carefully remove chicken and pan from oven and increase oven temperature to 500 degrees.
  2. FOR THE GLAZE: While chicken cooks, stir cornstarch and water together in small bowl until no lumps remain; set aside. Bring remaining glaze ingredients to simmer in medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until reduced to ¾ cup, 6 to 8 minutes. Slowly whisk cornstarch mixture into glaze. Return to simmer and cook 1 minute. Remove pan from heat.
  3. When oven is heated to 500 degrees, place 1½ cups water in bottom of roasting pan and return to oven. Roast until entire chicken skin is browned and crisp and instant-read thermometer registers 160 degrees inserted in thickest part of breast and 175 degrees in thickest part of thigh, 24 to 30 minutes. Check chicken halfway through roasting; if top is becoming too dark, place 7-inch square piece of foil over neck and wingtips of chicken and continue to roast (if pan begins to smoke and sizzle, add additional ½ cup water to roasting pan).
  4. Brush chicken with ¼ cup glaze and continue to roast until browned and sticky, about 5 minutes. (If glaze has become stiff, return to low heat to soften.) Carefully remove chicken from oven, transfer chicken, still on can, to carving board and brush with another ¼ cup glaze. Let rest 20 minutes.
  5. While chicken rests, strain juices from pan through fine-mesh strainer into fat separator; allow liquid to settle 5 minutes. Whisk ½ cup juices into remaining ¼ cup glaze in saucepan and set over low heat. Using kitchen towel, carefully lift chicken off can and onto platter or cutting board. Carve chicken, adding any accumulated juices to sauce. Serve, passing sauce separately.
********
Every Wednesday, we would like to highlight one of our patrons. You are the folks who make Polyface succeed. You are the ones who vote with your food dollar for land healing, healthiness and educated food-buyers. To our every day heros - we thank you! Join in the fun! If you would like to participate, please leave a comment with your email address.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Polyface Bulk Beef & Pork Boxes

In an effort to minimize mistakes and reduce confusion, this year we will debut an innovative approach to our discounted bulk beef and pork offerings. Many of you have expressed reluctance to call the butcher and specify cutting instructions because “I don’t know what I’m doing.” The internal logistical gyrations we contort to deliver 100 percent customized error-free orders is practically indescribable. As a result, we’re going to simplify by offering 5 beef options and 3 pork options. If you still want complete customization, you need to order as a farmgate customer and pick it up here at the farm.

The fact is, muscle groups are different and you can’t get all the possible cuts out of one animal anyway. For example, a delmonico is the middle of a rib eye steak. A delmonico, ribeye steak, and standing rib roast are all the same muscle, just cut differently. We suggest you go ahead and enjoy the discounts on these volume packages and just fill in your other cravings from the retail inventory.

The prices, unlike previous years, are based on the actual pounds of packages you receive. Previously, we’ve charged by hot hanging weight, which is normally 30 percent heavier than your take-home packages. The prices listed are our best guess to the hanging weight equivalent. All packages will come cryovac packaged, unless you specifically email us and ask for butcher paper wrap.

Steaks are packed 2 per package. Roasts are 2-3 pounds per package. The number of cuts varies based on the size of the animal; that is why we can’t tell you numbers of individual packages. Each of the beef is a quarter and the hogs are halves. If you want a whole animal, feel free to order 4 or 2 A's or you can order an A, B, C, D to get all the different option. Ditto a half. You may mix and match all you’d like.

ONE QUARTER BEEF OPTIONS

A—All American $4.75 per pound
Organs—heart, tongue, liver
Cut butcher’s choice (standard American)
T-bones, Porterhouse, Top Sirloin, Bone-in Rib Steak, Top Round, Ground, Sirloin Tip, Bottom Roast, Chuck Roast
Except for Chuck, all roasts are boneless
All bones (15-20 pounds)
All steaks cut 1 1/4” thick, 2 to a package.
Roasts cut to 3 pounds
Ground Beef in 1 lb. packages.


B—Slow Cooker’s Dream $5.25 per pound
No Organs
Soup bones
All roasts with bone in, cut to about 3 pounds
All Chuck Roast
Less than 20 pounds of Ground
Ground in 1 lb. packages
All steaks/roasts with bone in
Steaks cut 1 1/4” thick
Stew cubes
Cuts: T-bone, Porterhouse, Top Sirloin, Bone-in Rib Steak, Sirloin Tip, Bottom Roast, Chuck Roast, Cube Steak, Short Ribs, Shanks for soup.

C—Country Club $5.75 per pound
No organs or bones
Cut butcher’s choice (standard American)
Filet Mignon, Sirloin, Delmonico, New York Strip,
Top Round, Ground, Eye of Round, Sirloin Tip, Bottom Roast, Chuck Roast
Steaks cut 1 1/4” thick
Ground 20-30 pounds
Ground in 1 lb. packages


D—Deluxe Delight $6.25 per pound
Everything boneless
Maximize high end
More than 30 pounds of Ground
Ground in 1 lb. packages
All steaks cut 1 1/4” thick
Cuts: Filet Mignon, Delmonico, New York Strip, Bottom Round, Sirloin Tip
No organs


E—Meatloaf Mania $4.25 per pound
All ground
1 pound packages
We recognize that this is the same as our regular retail price; the value
With this is that you get first dibs because it is not subject to our inventory.


HALF HOG OPTIONS
If you would prefer your sausage to be all ground pork without seasonings instead, please send an email when you order and we'll put that on your order. No other substitutions.

A—Chop Lick'n $6.00 per pound
Breakfast sausage in 1 oz. links, 1 lb. package
Pork Chops
Ham Roasts
Two Boston Butts (shoulder)
Spareribs

B—Loin Party $6.50 per pound
Breakfast sausage in 1 oz. links, 1 lb. package
Tenderloin roasts
Tenderloin filets
Backbone
Spareribs
Two Boston Butts (shoulder)
Ham Roasts

C—Saus-Pan $5.25 per pound
Breakfast sausage—lots, in 1 oz. links, 1 lb. package
Tenderloin roasts
Pork Chops
Spareribs
One Boston Butt
Two ham roasts

You must order these approx 1 -2 months in advance. If you order now, you would not receive it until your NEXT buying club delivery. Visit the order site to place your order. You must place your order before the next deadline.

Monday, May 25, 2009

How to make lard

Lard - sounds like a daunting task, doesn't it? Well, don't let it fool you. It's much easier than it sounds! Are you ready? Let's go!

You will need:
  • Polyface Pork fat (these come in 10 lb bags)
  • A Crock pot (a 4-qt holds 5 lbs of fat)
  • Strainer or cheese cloth or slotted spoon
  • Clean container to store your lard in (I use wide-mouth quart jars)
  1. Thaw the lard. I usually set mine in the sink overnight. Put about half of it into your crockpot. Leave the other half of the lard in the bag and place it into your fridge. Turn your crockpot to LOW and let it sit all day until all of the fat is melted and appears clear.
  2. Pour it through your strainer or cheese cloth, or pull out the chunks of fat that are left. If you want to, you can fry these for cracklin's. I disposed of mine.
  3. Pour the lard into your containers, let them cool just a bit, then refrigerate it. It will keep almost indefinitely in the fridge.
Viola! You have made lard! It will harden in the fridge turning a beautful white.

Start over at step one with the other half of your pork fat. At this point, I ran the crockpot over night and then strained it in the morning. Worked perfectly. 10 pounds of fat makes about 3 quarts of lard.

For those of you who don't have a crock pot - don't despair! You can still make it. Just put the fat into a nice large pot and turn your burner onto low - as low as it will go. You will want to watch it a little more carefully and stir it on occasion to make sure that it doesn't burn. Follow steps 2 & 3 like normal.

Uses for lard:
Use it for frying or sauteing anything - anytime you need an oil, just use the lard - try my fried chicken recipe. It will "wow" your family and guests.
Use it in place of shortening in recipes. It's much healthier for you. Pie crusts are excellent made with lard.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Polyface Patron Wednesday


Name: Monette

Buying club: Annapolis

Age: 42

How did you first hear about Polyface? Through a friend in Hyattsville

How long have you been a Polyface customer? Placed my first order in November 2007

Have you ever been to the farm? Not yet

Share one food item that best describes the last year of your life.
a stir fry, because it included a lot of things that came together deliciously

What is your favorite Polyface product and why?
Right now, the short ribs

What is your favorite season?
Summer

If you could you try anything and not fail (and money was no object), what dream would you attempt? Opening a restaurant specializing in local foods that are put together creatively and tastefully and offered on a pay-as-you-can basis

Share how you met your spouse. I joined his co-ed softball team

What is the kindest thing anyone has ever done for you? My car broke down once leaving me, my then-very young son and cat far from home. Strangers noticed us parked at the side of a gas station and asked if we needed help. After I explained that I needed to stay there until the shop opened in the morning, and that I needed all the money I had for possible repairs, the couple put us up in a nearby hotel and made sure we had a meal. I cried half the night in thankfulness to God for them.

What are you most passionate about? Living life fully

********

Every Wednesday, we would like to highlight one of our patrons. You are the folks who make Polyface succeed. You are the ones who vote with your food dollar for land healing, healthiness and educated food-buyers. To our every day heros - we thank you! Join in the fun! If you would like to participate, please leave a comment with your email address.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Beef Parmigiana

BEEF PARMIGIANA
Submitted by Teresa Salatin (Polyface Farm)

1 11/2-lb. Polyface top round steak
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup dry bread crumbs
1 egg, beaten
1/3 cup oil
1 med. onion, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon marjoram
1 6-oz can tomato paste
1/2 lb. mozzarella cheese, sliced

Place beef between pieces if waxed paper on cutting board; pound thin. Trim off excess fat; cut into 6-8 pieces.
Mix Parmesan cheese and bread crumbs.
Dip beef in egg; roll in Parmesan cheese mixture.
Brown beef on both sides in oil in skillet. Arrange in shallow baking dish.
Cook onion in pan drippings in skillet over low heat until soft; stir in salt, pepper, sugar, marjoram and tomato paste. Add 2 cups hot water gradually, stirring constantly.
Cook for 5 minutes, scraping pan.
Pour 2/3 of the sauce over beef.
Top with cheese slices; top with remaining sauce.
Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until tender.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Sirloin Tips Jardiniere

SIRLOIN TIPS JARDINIERE
Submitted by Teresa Salatin (Polyface Farm)

1 2-lb. Polyface beef sirloin tip or Polyface top round steak, cubed
4 Tablespoons flour
2 Tablespoons salad oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped carrots
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 teaspoon chopped garlic
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning
2 4-oz. cans sliced mushrooms

Roll beef cubes in flour: brown in oil in skillet. Season with salt and pepper. Cover with onion, carrots, celery and garlic; sprinkle with paprika, cumin and Italian seasoning. Drain mushrooms; spread over the top. Add 1/4 cup water to skillet. Simmer, covered , for 45 minutes or until beef is tender. Serve over noodles or rice.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

The Washington Post

This was published today in the Washington Post. Click on the link to read the story:

Monday, May 4, 2009

Oven Fried Chicken

Oven Fried Chicken
Submitted by Sheri Salatin
1 Polyface Broiler chicken (cut-up)
1/2 cup flour (your choice of wheat or white. I have also used rice flour with success)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup lard
1 egg, beaten
3 tablespoon milk
Melt butter and lard in 9 x 13 pan in hot oven. Mix milk and egg together in bowl. Mix dry ingredients separate in a bag. Dip chicken in milk/egg mixture. Shake with dry ingredients until completely coated. Place skin side down in melted butter & lard and bake at 400-425 degrees for 30 minutes. Turn chicken over and bake another 30 minutes until crispy fried.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

More on ABC Nightline from Joel...

The license a story teller uses to include or exclude material can have a huge bearing on the story's impact. ABC Nightline was out yesterday and did an 18 minute interview but used less than 1 minute of it. And while I'm not asking to hog the time here (no pun intended) I think what they excluded in the editing made our segment much less powerful than it could otherwise have been.

While I may not verbalize it verbatim, I can come pretty close because this just happened yesterday and it was only 6 questions and 18 minutes of words. I'd like to share two especially salient ones--the two points I was really disappointed that they edited. Here they are:

1. Scientists will say that the conditions our pigs enjoy created hog cholera in the 1930s, or encourage trichinosis and other diseases when compared to Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations. Nothing could be further from the truth. The principles of rotation, host-free rest periods, density, and hygienic husbandry practices are the same indoors and outdoors. Hog cholera developed when overcrowded hogs in 24/7/365 mudholes created conditions for pathogens to proliferate easily. At Polyface, this paddock you see the pigs enjoying today has been pig-free for 5 months. The salad bar grass is succulent and palatable, and they will only be here for a few days before moving onto another long-rested paddock. And these 30 pigs have half an acre to enjoy.
Anytime you confine animals and plants in crowded conditions without providing ample host-free rest periods, pathogens need not put any energy into surviving or finding a host. As a result, pathogens can focus all their energy on virulent mutating, reproduction, and more lethal activities. Pathogens thrive in industrial, factory settings, whether those are indoor or outdoor.

2. The final questions was this: "So Joel, you have a national platform tonight to talk to the American people--what do you want to say to them?"
My answer: You can stop this pathogen proliferation right now by refusing to buy industrial food. If you are concerned about swine flue, mad cow, bird flue, campylobacter, E. coli, salmonella, lysteria, nutrition, health, and the landscape we're leaving for our grandchildren, you can opt out of industrial food right now today. That doesn't take a government regulation, a new agency, a new vaccine, a study by Centers for Disease Control, a bail-out or a new national policy. All it takes is for you to refuse to buy industrial food. And all around this great nation thousands of farmers like me are ready and able to supply you with nutrient dense, heritage-honoring, pasture-based food to you and your neighbors. Enjoy it.

--Joel Salatin

Swine Flu Outbreak: The facts

ABC Nightline was out here yesterday. Here is the story that was aired on last night's news:

Swine Flu Outbreak: The Facts

Click on the link to see the story.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Fragrant Beef Curry with Rice

Submitted by Megan Crowe (South Arlington Buying Club)

2 pounds Stew Beef Cubes
3 tablespoons vegetable oil 2 large onions, sliced
6 whole cloves
2 large garlic cloves, chopped
2 cinnamon sticks
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
1 1/2 cups whole milk
3 large tomatoes, quartered
3 tablespoons Major Grey chutney
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons minced peeled fresh ginger
1 1/2 tablespoons curry powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Hot cooked rice

Sprinkle beef with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in heavy large pot over high heat. Working in batches, add beef to pot and brown on all sides, about 7 minutes per batch. Using slotted spoon, transfer to plate. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in same pot over medium-high heat. Add onions; sauté until tender and brown, about 7 minutes. Return beef to pot. Add cloves, garlic, cinnamon sticks, bay leaf and dried red pepper to pot; stir 1 minute. Stir in milk, tomatoes, chutney, lemon juice, ginger, curry powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt and bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until beef is tender, stirring occasionally, about 2 hours.
Uncover; increase heat to medium. Boil stew until juices are slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Serve over rice.

Makes 6 servings.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

USA Today article


Polyface was featured in USA Today, click on the link below to see the article:

'Natural patterns' of farming touted in documentary

Leave a comment to let us know what you think.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Broilers on pasture

It's officially Spring at Polyface. The broilers are in the field on pasture. At 3 weeks old, after they have come out of the brooder we move the birds to the field where they stay until they are 8 weeks old. They are in floorless, 10'x12' field shelters that are moved every single day to fresh pasture. We have about 70 birds per shelter. If you look closely at this picture, you can see where the birds have been and where they are going. They are headed away from us in the photo. Much to many folks suprise, they do eat the grass!Every day we use this special made dolly to move the pen one space to fresh pasture. The pens are lined up in a V-shape like a flock of geese, to maximize the most of the field. They are also our fertilization program for fertilizing the grass for the cows. No chemicals or pesticides here!

The dolly is slipped under one end and then the pen is pulled from the other end. The broilers just follow along excited for the new section of grass and bugs. It takes a couple of days to train them when they first go out, but soon they get the hang of it, and immediatly mosey on to the next section the instant we start pulling.

Each pen is equipped with its own water and feed trough, which we fill every day and as the birds get older, we fill them twice per day. The water is kept in a bucket that sits on top of the pen and is gravity fed into their water dish.It takes about 4 minutes to service each pen each day. This includes moving, watering and feeding them.
The birds are in the field for 5 -6 weeks of their life. And this is the Polyface way of raising Pastured Poultry. Fresh air, sunshine, and no staying in the same place for more than a day makes for a happier, healthier chicken. And in turn, if you are what you eat, makes a happier, healthier person.
As of today, we are only two weeks away from the first day of butchering. We process the broilers at 8 weeks old. I'll try to post more on that in a couple of weeks for those of you who might be interested.
If you haven't had the opportunity to visit, I would urge you to do so. We are open every Saturday from 9am-4pm and during the week by appointment if you want to purchase products. If you are just coming to look around, you are welcome 24-7. We have no locks. There is nothing that you can't see, touch, smell, taste, or hear. We at Polyface strive for total transparency. Come on out this summer and bring your kids. It's a perfect environment to teach them how their food is and should be raised.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Fighting for local food at Virginia Tech

Context: Virginia Tech created a new position called a sustainability director in dining services Oct. 1, 2008, and hired Andy Sarjahani to fill it. He has been aggressive and made remarkable changes in a few short months.

Last month he exchanged battery eggs from Pennsylvania with Virginia cage-free (a far cry from pastured, but we take baby steps). Humane Society in the U.S. found out about it and did a press release applauding Virginia Tech's effort. That riled the Virginia Farm Bureau, the Virginia Poultry Federation, the Virginia Tech Poultry Science Department, and the Virginia AgriBusiness Council who pressured Virginia Tech's president and underlings to reprimand Andy and muzzle him from extolling the virtues of pastured livestock and local food. Instead of rolling over, Andy went to the New York Times, which supposedly is doing a story on this Tuesday, April 21. I had written an email to Virginia Tech's president when I heard about
Andy's treatment, encouraging him to let the sustainability effort proceed.
The NYT reporter, Kim Severson, emailed me and asked if the president had responded. He
did not. Then she asked an amazing question: What do you think is at a heart of this matter?

Below, you will see my response to that question. I have not heard back from her. I don't know if the story will be spiked, delayed, or run on schedule, But I think you should know what I said. Here it is:


At the heart of the matter is this: The local, clean, humane--call it what you want--non-industrial food movement is beginning to chip away at the mainstream industrial food system's market share, and they are hopping mad about it. Our movement disparages industrial models on many levels: energy, ecology, nutrition, economy, animal welfare. The industrial elitists are fighting for credibility and market share.
To be fair, most of the industrial food proponents believe farmers like us and people like Andy jeopardize the planet's food system by espousing what they believe to be pathogen-laden, anti-scientific, Luddite models like pastured livestock and compost-grown tomatoes. The industrial food advocates truly believe that if more people eat from their backyard gardens and neighbors' pastures, we will have an epidemic of diseases that will destroy the human population either directly or indirectly through sickening plants and animals on factory farms.

What we're seeing is the battle heating up between heritage wisdom and the techno-cult. It's the age-old war between humility and hubris, east vs. west, nurturing vs. dominion, manipulation vs. respect, egocrentricity vs. sacredness. We are at Wounded Knee in the food system. Just look at HR 875 and you will see a Monstanto- sponsored direct assault on the garden President and Mrs. Obama just installed. I tried to send a response to a NYT Op-Ed last week assaulting free range hogs, but NYT would not print it.

Science is not objective. The USDA told us for 40 years that feeding dead cows to cows was a wonderful scientific breakthrough, only to give us mad cow. We're still feeding chicken manure and dead chickens by the truckload to cows, all with USDA and land grant university blessing. When Monsanto tried to patent wild rice that has been harvested by the Ojibwa Indian tribe for millenia, from their dug-out canoes floating under the rice canes drooping over native streams, that was evil. To force a Native American tribe to pay royalties to Monsanto to harvest something nature gave them for millenia is not a matter of gamesmanship or preference: it is evil.

When the government agents and attorneys general deny Americans the freedom to drink raw milk for food safety reasons, but applaud feeding Twinkies, Cocoa Puffs, and Mountain Dew as safe--that is not science. It is food prostitution of the worst degree. All of us in the clean food
production sector are feeling the U.S. Cavalry surrounding us: we are trying to preserve native food culture and heal soil. The new Cavalry comes with Sheriff's badges and FDA food Nazis who don't want food grown or purchased that heals land, body, and soul. They want irradiated, amalgamated, reconstituted, adulterated, artificially flavored and preserved, unpronouncable pseudo-food.

Our food represents true security: seed saving, healthy immune systems, healthy local economies. In a word, true independence. A community that can feed itself is ultimately
free, able to withstand the desire to turn people into slaves of global elitists. Yes, I realize this rheotoric now places me squarely in the camp of right wing extremists, according to the just-released Homeland Security assessment. But it's time all the greenies and foodies realized that the Donald Rumsfelds also run the FDA and USDA, wined and dined by Monsanto and company in a common fraternal agenda. The Ron Paul homeschool anti-Iraq war folks are now allying with the liberal greenies and foodies in a common understanding that the powers that
be are not friendly to freedom or security.

Unless, of course, freedom means doing what Monsanto says, and security means Naziism. This is strong language, but there is a domestic terrorist war going on, and the media is largely ignoring it. The terrorists sit in government leadership and corporate boardrooms, using gun toting law enforcement officials to prey on honest Americans seeking better food choices for their children and their 3 trillion member internal community of gastro-intestinal bacteria who are unfamiliar with 90 percent of the pseudo-food currently stocking supermarket shelves that can't even be made in a kitchen or didn't exist prior to 1900.

All our side is asking for is freedom. We are not a threat, any more than Native Americans were a threat to America at the time of Wounded Knee. But they represented a paradigm, a way of life, that left-over Conquistadors found repugnant. So attack and annihilation were the order of the day. The industrial food system is trying right now to either eradicate heritage food and failing that, at least put it on the reservation. Some of us will not go willingly.

This is more than I intended to write, but once I got into it, the juices flowed and I figured this might be my one big shot at someone who actually can actually help save us from our sophistication, hubris, and greed.

--By Joel Salatin

Monday, April 20, 2009

Fresh - The Movie

Fresh - The Movie by Ripple Effect Films

A beautiful, empowering film. Be sure to book your seat early. Joel will be at the DC, NYC, and Boston viewings. Come on out and show your support for good food, that heals the land and body! Click on the links below to purchase your ticket.

DC: May 26th at 8:00 PM at the Avalon 5612 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20015

NYC: May 27th at 7:00 PM at the NYU Cantor Film Center 36 E 8th St. New York, NY 10003

Boston: May 28th at 7:00 PM at Harvard Northwest Building, 52 Oxford Street, room B-103, Cambridge, MA 02138

Kansas City: May 31st

Minneapolis: June 2nd

Milwaukee: June 4th at 6:00 PM at Discovery World Center, 500 N Harbor Dr - Milwaukee, WI 53202

Seattle True Independent Festival
June 7th at 4:00 PM at Jewel Box Theater 2322 2nd Ave, Seattle, WA 98121
June 11th at 7:00 PM at Northwest Film Forum - 1515 12th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122

Vancouver: June 8th, 9th or 10th

Berkeley: June 15th (Monday) at 7:00 PM at Gaia Arts Center, 2116 Allston Way, Ste. 1, Berkeley, CA 94704

San Francisco: June 12, 13, or 14 (Fri., Sat., or Sun.)

Denver: June 17 or 18 (Weds or Thurs.)



Caraway Roast

Caraway Roast

Submitted by Serena Hicks (Richmond Buying Club)

1 3.5 lb roast, trimmed (I actually used brisket)
1-2 TBSP olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped
1/4 c stone ground mustard
1 TBSP caraway seeds
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 12oz bottle Guinness or other stout beer
1/3 c. flour
4 c. hot cooked egg noodles

  1. Put onions in the bottom of slow cooker/crock pot.
  2. Brown roast on all sides in oil. remove to slow cooker.
  3. Combine mustard, caraway, salt, pepper and beer in a bowl. mix well. pour over roast.
  4. Cover with lid; cook on high heat for 1 hour, reduce heat to low and cook 8-10 hours until roast is tender.
  5. Remove roast and onion from slow cooker. pour remaining liquid into large skillet. use the flour to make a slurry with about 1/2 c of the liquid. Add the slurry to the skillet and stir over medium-medium high heat until gravy thickens.
  6. Serve roast over egg noodles and pour gravy over both.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Oven-Roasted Oriental-Style Pork Backbone

Oven-Roasted Oriental-Style Pork Backbone
Submitted by Sheri Salatin (Polyface, Inc.)
2 1/2 - 3 lbs Polyface pork backbone or spareribs
3 Tbsp. pineapple, peach, or apricot preserves
1/3 cup catsup
2 Tbsp. Soy Sauce
1 tsp grated gingerroot or 1/4 tsp ground ginger
1 clove garlic, minced
1. Place backbone in a 4-6 qt. pot. Add enough water to cover. Bring to boiling. Reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 20-30 minutes or till backbones are tender; drain.
2. Meanwhile, for sauce, cut up any large pieces of fruit in preserves. In a bowl stir together preserves, catsup, soy sauce, gingerroot, and garlic.
3. Place backbone, bone side down (if you can tell), in a shallow roasting pan. (I use my 9"x13" cake pan) Brush some sauce onto backbones. Bake, uncovered, in 350* oven for 15-20 minutes or till heated through. Brush with remaining sauce before serving.

Makes about 4 servings.

Tip: Serve this with lots of napkins and let folks just use their fingers. Can be messy but the taste is worth the mess!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Kibbeh

Kibbeh

Submitted by Serena Hicks (Midlothian Buying Club)

2 c bulghar wheat
5 c boiling water
1 lb ground beef
2 tsp cumin
1 onion, chopped fine
salt and pepper to taste

  1. Soak bulghar in boiling water. let sit 30 minutes or so. Squeeze out excess water.
  2. Mix together ground beef, onion, cumin, salt and pepper. Add bulghar and mix thoroughly.
  3. Spread mixture in shallow, oiled baking pan (I used a lipped cookie sheet). Score the top to make diamond pattern.
  4. Bake in 350F oven 25 minutes or so, until knife inserted in meat comes out clean.
  5. Broil to brown top, if desired. Serve with yogurt-sesame sauce.
Yogurt Sesame sauce

1 c plain yogurt
1/4 c tahini
1-2 TBSP lemon juice
Salt to taste

Combine ingredients. Check seasoning. Let sit at least 15 minutes before serving.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Food, Inc.

FOOD INC. is a 90-minute documentary you'll be hearing a lot about
and it features Polyface Farm. I was invited
by the producers and distributors to participate with them in one of
the first USA screenings Friday night at a huge film
festival in Durham, NC.

Eric Schlosser, author of FAST FOOD NATION (the number 1 selling
American book of all time) approached
Robbie Kenner, a documentary film director/producer about doing a video
version of the book several years ago after
he saw some video work done by Robbie. Robbie was in the middle of
other projects and kind of put him off for a
couple of years. Finally, the two struck a deal and got funding
through the same investment outfit that funded Al Gore's
AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH.

They teamed up with Michael Pollan of OMNIVORE'S DILEMMA fame and
produced FOOD, INC. which has now
been purchased by Magnolia Pictures for distribution. It opens June 12
in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York,
then 10 more cities the following week and by August should be
filtering down to 20,000-population cities. It essentially
tries to portray the story of both books via video, with Polyface the
alternative white knight. Available on DVD before
Christmas.

Robbie and crew were here a couple of years ago for a day to do the
filming.

Many people are saying this book will do to supermarkets what JAWS did
to beaches. I arrived at the festival an
hour and a half before showtime, had a couple of media interviews with
and without Robbie, The festival staff was
professional and had things timed to the second, and instructions to
the centimeter: "You will sit in this chair. When the
first credit plays, I will bring you out this door. We will enter on
stage in this order. You will sit in this chair. When that
light turns on, you can pick your nose." (Just kidding about that
one)."

The theater seated 800 and it was full. The audience was completely
tuned in. A couple of Weston Pricer (WAPers)
were there, which was great. Had plenty of vegans too. Poor souls.

Polyface, which is the only non-industrial farm really featured in the
film, occupies the midpoint, and the audience
reaction to this breath of fresh air was unbelievable. At the end of
it, they all applauded wildly--as if the screen could hear
the affirmation.

When it was over, Robbie and I went onstage and took questions for 30
minutes. Most were directed toward me
and they ranged from: can we really feed the world, to how do we deal
with the elitism perspective (price), and how can
you defend slaughtering animals? (this from the vegan). The
audience was definitely supportive of non-industrial food
and gave Robbie and I an embarrassing multi-minute standing ovation.

The biggest concern I have about the film is that people will demand
more government regulations. I did not sense
that at the screening, which was a relief. But of course, I didn't
have time to explore every reaction, either. Interestingly,
Smithfield, which is definitely portrayed as a bad guy in the film,
refused to be interviewed for it. But they wanted to send
a representative to be on stage with Robbie and I during this Q&A--this
request was refused by the filmmakers. "Oh, so
now you want to talk?" was Robbie's response to their request.

You will want to see it and it will solidify your resolve to keep
voting with your food dollars.

By Joel Salatin

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