It’s the first day of December and it’s 50 degrees outside. Whoa. This super warm November has us exhausted. Typically it gets cold and the ground freezes and we’re able to put the farm into rest mode for the winter and recover from the sun up to sun down daily physical work of the farming season.
But with the anomalously warm weather, we felt compelled to keep on trucking. We’ve been able get the posts and beams chiseled and mortised for our basement. We should be able to get the joists up and the subfloor on and get it all covered up before snow flies. We’re super excited to get that done, but now we’re even more sore, achy, and exhausted than we were last month. It’s been a long sprint since March and, needless to say, we’re awfully excited for the first snow and a chance to relax and put our feet up for maybe an hour or two.
The warm weather has been wonderful for the animals. The chickens have been out every day eating insects from the soft soil and following around behind any rooting the pigs have done. The results of their foraging are some intensely rich and orange eggs, which we are happy to offer to meat customers this month as an add-on to shares. We’ve been enjoying our eggs soft-boiled on homemade sourdough with a healthy amount of butter for a quick lunch in the middle of the day. Possibly the best way to enjoy a perfectly-raised and insanely delicious pastured egg yolk.
To soft boil an egg: bring a pot of water to a rolling boil. Gently place your eggs in the boiling water. Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and cook for seven minutes. Remove eggs to a bowl of ice water. When just slightly cool, peel the eggs starting from the large end (where the air pocket is). Slice and smash onto a piece of toast, sprinkle with salt and enjoy. Soft-boiled eggs can be enjoyed warm or cold. 🙂
Since the ground hasn’t frozen yet, the pigs have been enjoying afternoon strolls through our oak savannas, digging up acorns and nabbing fallen crab apples. We’re super excited for acorn and apple fed pork chops this winter!
When the holidays roll around and we visit family for Christmas we are going to sit back and eat some serious ham. This month we’ve got some delicious smoked hams for your holiday tables. We’ll be doing a simple roast and glaze. The roasts are different sizes depending on the size of your farm share. But to roast and glaze follow these guidelines:
Our hams are cured and smoked, which means they are ready to eat! They simply need to be warmed up. We like a glaze on our ham for extra sweet, craggy edges and a little bit of spice.
1/3 cup maple syrup (the real kind!)
1 tablespoon stone ground mustard
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
Double the glaze recipe if you have an 8-pound ham.
Cut ham with cross hatch pattern. Rub all over with glaze, saving a few tablespoons for later. Optional: poke whole clove “studs” into the corners of the cross hatches.
Place ham on rack in a roasting pan and tent loosely with foil. (Don’t have a rack for your roasting pan? You can prop the ham up on metal cookie cutters!)
Bake at 325 for 15 to 20 minutes per pound. Remove foil for last twenty minutes of cooking and cover with the rest of the glaze. Cook until center of the meat reads 140 on a thermometer and the top is nicely browned and crusty.
Let rest for fifteen minutes loosely tented under foil. Then serve and enjoy!