MAKE YOUR OWN SPICE BLENDS
Last week we mentioned that our next Market Class will be taught by Viki Richter of Richter’s Farm. The Richter’s main farm product is high quality Red Wattle pork, BUT, Viki mastered many kitchen skills in the years before farming became part of her life. Those of you who’ve used her sour dough starter and recipe or ranch dressing mix know what I’m talking about.
On February 17 Viki will be teaching and sharing recipes about making your own clean seasonings and seasoning mixes. She will be covering everything you could ever want to know about making your own spice blends: sourcing ingredients, what’s good to use and what’s not, keeping them fresh, finding good recipes, etc.
With commercial food becoming more and more processed, and more people learning they have serious and life threatening food allergies every day, making your own blends is an easy way to help take back control over what you and your family eat. And if you’re at the beginning of your journey to a healthy diet and lifestyle, this is a delicious place to start!
So mark your calendar for Saturday, February 17 at 10am. The class will take place in the greenhouse at Dothan Nurseries and we hope to see you there!
THIS WEEK’S GROWER NOTES
We have the best Growers in the Wiregrass! Please learn more about them on our Grower Page.
First planting of Sugar Snap Peas are in the ground and sprouting. There will probably be 2 more plantings over the next month. When April gets here we should have plenty of peas!
Top of the to-do list this week is get the blackberries trimmed and trellised. Trellising and limiting growth creates better air flow around the plants helping to avoid diseases. It also makes them easier to pick. Bonus points.
Also high on the list is to start transplants. I spent several cold hours washing and sterilizing my seed flats. Now I just need to fill them up with soil and nestle those seeds down in there. In a few days there will be tomato, pepper, eggplant and herb babies. Yes, it does seem silly to wash and sterilize and then fill with dirt.
Sofia, latest member of our tribe, specializes in grasshopper removal.
BAIN HOME GARDENS: Hello Market Friends,
Today I got a little stir crazy. With Mr. Bain Home Gardner and Littlest Bain Home Gardener not feeling well, I decided to get out of the house for just a moment. This allows for them to rest and for me to run some needed errands for the garden. It’s time to amend one of our raised beds so off to the garden supply store. I was saddened by the customer service I received there. Which brings me to the topic of today’s discussion, customer service. When you are a business you are a brand thus everything done & said by you and your employees, like it or not is associated with that brand. Some of us simply take our business elsewhere when we dislike how a company operates but I, for one, believe in letting the issues be known. How else will they improve? We do our very best at Bain Home Gardens to bring the Wiregrass Community a quality product. However, if for some reason you are disappointed in your product, please let us know. We care about you, our market family. Without you there is no us.
Eventually I did acquire the supplies I needed to do a small planting project just for our family. At least I got my hands dirty, right? Till next week, from our family to yours!
HAWKINS HOMESTEAD FARM: At the Market last week, it was nice getting to meet and see some of our other growers and producers. The funny thing is that I had actually dropped off my items earlier that morning, but then forgot to pick up my own order so I had to rush back before I missed it.
I am a person who believes in random acts of kindness. I love to share (perhaps too much sometimes), but that’s a story for another time. This leads me to tell you guys about Rinske of Working Cows Dairy and Wendy of Avalon Farms. Rinske is such a sweet and genuine person. From day 1 of meeting her I think I almost scared her off because I’m a hugger and I’m pretty sure that took her by surprise. Anyway Rinske has been so supportive of us and has went out of her way to not only direct her own customers to us, but also to advertise us at her farm. We are so thankful for her kindness, trust, knowledge, and support! Thank you Rinske.
Now Wendy was one of the growers there last week who showed kindness towards me and others that day as well. I’m sure Wendy thought nothing of it by sharing some onion plants with us, but we definitely appreciate it. When I arrived there were just 2 bunches left and she allowed me to have both. One for us and one for our friends at Bain Home Gardens.
So we want to give a shout out and say a thank you to these ladies for their kindness. We also want to thank to Roslyn who is ALWAYS kind to us plus without her there is no Market. Really thank you to all of the growers yugand producers for sharing your knowledge, skills, and sometimes even what you grow with others! Kindness is something we all have control over. It doesn’t take much to share and wouldn’t you know that what we give out is often given right back to us in return. This happens to me all the time. So if you have extra time, items, or words of encouragement, please share! Help others. Be kind. Good things will come from it!
HORTON’S FARM: We are cutting our product offerings back significantly next week as Ros will be gone for her annual pilgrimage to the Alabama Master Beekeepers Symposium in Clanton. Thanks for your understanding. Viki Richter will be managing Market Pickup on Friday, Feb. 9. Thanks in advance for your kindness and cooperation in these situations.
RICHTER FARMS: As always it is so much fun to be around the the farm doing chores and just watching the animals do their thing. Since last I wrote we have a new addition, Spot, the Nubian Goat, born last month! We love having little ones running around being silly!
As Roslyn has mentioned I will be doing a class on DIY spice mixes Feb 17 in the greenhouse of Dothan Nurseries. I have been making my own mixes for 25+ years. I don’t like to run to the store to buy a little packet or bottle for a recipe and paying a lot of money for a small amount of spice and reading all the ingredients, some you can’t pronounce. I knew there had to be a way to make my own clean mixes. Looking forward to meeting everyone and sharing recipes and ideas.