About Our Farm...

Village Acres Farm

Village Acres Farm has a mission of connecting people to their food, the earth and each other. We are committed to growing food and building relationships that are sustaining, restorative, and transformative for our customers, employees, and selves.

Celebrating over 30 years of farming, 20 years of Organic certification and 15 years of serving the community through a CSA model, Village Acres operates as a diversified system, integrating vegetables, berries and pastured livestock.

Village Acres offers on-farm pick-up of produce, eggs, and chicken for CSA members, as well as distribution to State College, Lewistown, Selinsgrove, and Harrisburg. We also serve breakfast the first Saturday of every month (April-November) and live music several evenings a year in our FoodShed.

Located just off Route 322 near Mifflintown - about 45 minutes from State College and Harrisburg - the 30 acre farm is centered in the village of Cuba Mills, nestled along the banks of the Lost Creek close to its confluence with the Juniata River.

 Read about our farm in Grid Magazine's Farmbook...

Blog/Farm Newsletters

Summer/Fall Week #26

Posted by Hannah :: Tuesday, November 25 :: 10:53am

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK: 

Sweet Potatoes, Potatoes, Butternut Squash, Rutabaga, Celeriac, Onions, Garlic, Spinach, Baby Kale Braising Mix, Variety Bunching Kale, and Herbs.


 

FARM NOTES:

Words for Thanksgiving from author and farmer Wendell Berry

" The pleasure of eating should be an extensive pleasure, not that of the mere gourmet. People who know the garden in which their vegetables have grown and know that the garden is healthy will remember the beauty of the growing plants, perhaps in the dewy first light of morning when gardens are at their best. Such a memory involves itself with the food and is one of the pleasures of eating. The knowledge of the good health if the garden relieves and frees and comforts the eater. The same goes for eating meat. The thought of the good pasture and of the calf contentedly grazing flavors the steak. Some, I know, will think it bloodthirsty or worse to eat a fellow creature you have known all its life. On the contrary, I think it means that you eat with understanding and with gratitude. A significant part of the pleasure of eating is one's accurate consciousness of the lives and the world from which food comes. The pleasure of eating, then, may be the best available standard of our health. And this pleasure, I think, is pretty fully available to the urban consumer who will make the necessary effort.

I mentioned earlier the politics, esthetics, and ethics of food. But to speak of the pleasure of eating is to go beyond those categories. Eating with the fullest pleasure - pleasure, that is, that does not depend on ignorance - is perhaps the profoundest enactment of our connection with the world. In this pleasure we experience and celebrate our dependence and our gratitude, for we are living from mystery, from creatures we did not make and powers we cannot comprehend. ..."

(Wendell Berry from the 1989 essay "The Pleasures of Eating" as republished in Bringing it to the Table, 2009.)


Did you know we have hundreds of recipes on our website and they can all be searched by ingredient? Simply visit www.VillageAcresFarm.com/recipe and search away. We are in the process of adding this year’s newsletter recipes but we’ve got tons to choose from. If you come across a recipe you particularly like, please send it and we’ll add it.

Recipe:  Sourdough Stuffing with Kale, Dates and Turkey Sausage

INGREDIENTS
1 (1-pound) loaf sourdough bread
10 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound turkey sausage, casing removed
2 cups diced onions
½ sprig rosemary
2 teaspoons thyme leaves
2 sliced chile de árbol
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
Black pepper, to taste
1 pound kale, about 2 large or 3 small bunches, tough rib stems removed and roughly chopped
3 ounces deglet noor dates (about 16), cut in half lengthwise
1 cup dry sherry
2 cups chicken or turkey stock
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
¾ cup roughly chopped toasted almonds

PREPARATION
Heat oven to 400 degrees. Cut the crust off the bread and tear remaining loaf into 1-inch croutons. Place torn bread on a rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with 4 tablespoons olive oil, squeezing and tossing bread with your hands to help it absorb the oil. Transfer to oven and toast, tossing once or twice, until croutons are golden brown and crispy on the outside but still a little soft and tender inside, 12 to 15 minutes. When croutons have cooled, place them in a large bowl.
Heat a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil and crumble sausage into pan. Sauté, breaking up sausage with a wooden spoon, until browned and just cooked through, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer sausage to the bowl with the croutons using a slotted spoon.
Return the pot to medium heat and add 2 more tablespoons olive oil, the onions, the rosemary sprig, the thyme and the chile. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Continue cooking another 3 to 4 minutes, stirring often, until onion is soft and starting to color slightly.
Add half the kale and the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil to the pan. Use tongs to turn the greens to coat them in oil and help them wilt and cook down. When there is room in the pan (from the greens wilting), add the rest of the kale and season with another 1/2 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of pepper. As soon as all the kale has wilted, transfer mixture to the bowl with the croutons and sausage. Remove rosemary. Add dates and stir well to combine.
Return pot to stove over high heat and carefully pour in sherry. Boil until sherry is reduced by three-quarters, then add stock. Boil until mixture is reduced by half, then swirl in butter until melted.
Pour hot liquid over crouton-kale mixture. Add almonds and toss well to combine; using tongs or your hands, squeeze and massage the stuffing to integrate the flavors and make sure bread has really soaked in all the liquid.
Transfer stuffing to a ceramic baking dish or casserole. Cover and bake 15 minutes in the 400-degree oven. Uncover and bake 10 to 15 more minutes, or until top is golden and crisp.

 


 

Summer/Fall Week #25

Posted by Debra Brubaker :: Tuesday, November 18 :: 11:37am

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK: 

Green Cabbage, Sweet Potatoes, Butternut Squash, Carrots, Salanova Lettuce Heads,  Mesclun Mix (Fulls), Onions, Frozen Red Raspberries, Tatsoi/Bok Choy


REMINDERS: 

Today we say farewell to our 25 week members. If you are unsure as to whether you are signed up for 25 or 29 weeks, please check the sign-in sheet at distribution or ask and we’ll let you know.

Thanks for sharing in the harvest with us and we hope to see you in the winter, spring or summer!

Turkeys will be delivered on Tuesday 11/25.

Blue Rooster Orders: If you are interested in grass-fed beef or lamb or free-range pork, you can place an order with our partner farm at BlueRoosterFarm.com and we'll deliver it with your CSA share.

Winter/Spring 2015 Season Signup open.  You can reserve your greens shares (egg shares are sold out) for the winter (January-April) season online (http://www.villageacresfarm.com/csa).  There is no “produce” share option for this season, but root vegetables  and other seasonal produce will be available for preorder through our website prior to each winter distribution. If you don’t want a greens or egg share, but still want the option to be on our mailing list for the season to be notified of items for preorder please join our “Extras” email mailing list (http://www.villageacresfarm.com/mailinglist). 


FARM NOTES:

Here we are at week 25. It doesn’t seem all that long ago that we were handing out basil and parsley starts, but many vegetables have come through our packing shed since those early weeks. Every year at this point, I feel a sense of gratitude (and often amazement) that we have made it through. I’m grateful for resilent plants who do everything in their power to thrive and in doing so produce great quantity and quality of food for us to eat and share. Just yesterday I harvested a large handful of parsley from this poor little 6 pack of parsley that remained in our greenhouse all summer long- never receiving deeper soil, only consisent water from my dear diligent mother. I am grateful for a great team to work with- Jackie, Allison, Will, my parents, Hannah, Chandler, Owen, as well as a group of 5 Amish Women who carry out all the activities of this farm- it’s a lot of work and sometimes stressful, but we all still seem to enjoy our days work. Also I’m grateful for a community of customers who value what we do and how we do it, and are willing to buy in for a whole season- not always knowing what the season will hold. We are truly blessed to have an extended farm community that includes all of you. It sounds like it’s time for a Thanksgiving Feast! For all you 25 weekers- we wish you a wonderful Holiday season and hope to cross paths again soon. To the rest of you, we look forward to seeing you next week! ~Deb


Did you know we have hundreds of recipes on our website and they can all be searched by ingredient? Simply visit www.VillageAcresFarm.com/recipe and search away. We are in the process of adding this year’s newsletter recipes but we’ve got tons to choose from. If you come across a recipe you particularly like, please send it and we’ll add it.

 

 RECIPE: Eggs & Tatsoi in a Sweet Potato Nest

Ingredients:

1 large sweet potato or 2 medium.
¼ cup onion divided
1 knob of ginger
handful of rosemaryminced
olive oil
2 bunches tatsoi
6 large eggs
2 ounces chevre
1 ounce of swiss cheese grated
fresh thyme

Instructions: Grate sweet potato(es), onion and ginger together. Place in a dish towel and squeeze liquid out. Add two tablespoons of whole wheat flour and minced rosemary and mix ingredients together. Heat Cast Iron or other pan and add 4 tbs oil. When the oil is hot sprinkle the sweet potato mixture all around until it covers the bottom in a layer. (and leave it alone). In a separate smaller pan - non stick, heat up 1 tbs of oil. Large dice onions, and the stems of the tatsoi. Separately chop the tatsoi leaves. Sauté the onions and stems until they start to turn translucent. Add the tatsoi leaves to the pan and let cook down - the leaves will wilt down like most greens. You may need to add a little oil to the sweet potatoes as they cook. When the potatoes seem like they've formed a crust on the bottom, using a plate, flip the potatoes over and slide it back into the pan on the other side. Pile the greens mixture on top of the sweet potatoes and using your fingers, or a spoon make little wells for eggs. Dollop chevre around the pan. Crack eggs and place them with the yolk in the center of the wells. With the oven on low broil, place the cast iron pan into the oven. The yolks will start to firm and the translucent whites will become opaque, you'll have to watch to make sure that you get it out of the oven on time. Sprinkle the top with grated swiss cheese and herbs (thyme, parsley, etc.)

Summer/Fall Week #24

Posted by Hannah :: Tuesday, November 11 :: 10:34am

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK: 

Savoy Cabbage, Potatoes, Turnips, Mesclun Mix, Onions, Garlic, Kale/Chard choice, Red Beets

Savoy cabbage can be used in a variety of recipes. It pairs well with red wine, apples, spices, horseradish and meat. It can be used for roulades, in stews and soups, as well as roasted plain and drizzled with olive oil. Fresh whole cabbage will keep in the refrigerator for one to six weeks depending on type and variety. Hard green, white or red cabbages will keep the longest while the looser Savoy and Chinese varieties need to be consumed more quickly. It is necessary to keep the outer leaves intact without washing when storing since moisture can cause Savoy cabbage to break down.


REMINDERS: 

Blue Rooster Orders: If you are interested in grass-fed beef or lamb or free-range pork, you can place an order with our partner farm at BlueRoosterFarm.com and we'll deliver it with your CSA share.

Thanksgiving Turkey Preorder:  We still have turkeys available for preorder, but don’t wait to the last minute as we normally sell out.  Visit our website for more information and  to preorder (http://www.villageacresfarm.com/store/thanksgiving-turkey-preorder).

Winter/Spring 2015 Season Signup open.  You can reserve your greens and egg shares for the winter (January-April) season online (http://www.villageacresfarm.com/csa).  There is no “produce” share option for this season, but root vegetables  and other seasonal produce will be available for preorder through our website prior to each winter distribution. If you don’t want a greens or egg share, but still want the option to be on our mailing list for the season to be notified of items for preorder please join our “Extras” email mailing list (http://www.villageacresfarm.com/mailinglist). 


FARM NOTES:

Last night, as I was watching Chandler spin on the wheel she saved for and purchased this week and Owen performing magic tricks, I couldn’t help but think of the term “homespun” to describe them both. Now, don’t think for a moment I don’t see them very much as their own persons, on their own journeys. That said, I like to believe that having the space and time to explore their interests and curiosities freely here on the farm provides for a certain groundedness that surely will serve them well throughout their lives.

In somewhat the same vein, there’s Roy. Always at the ready with making good use of salvaged materials. He always amazes me with his ability to see something out of seemingly nothing and bring it to fruition. This week included the completion of another field tunnel on the farm. He used some old framing he’s had around for awhile, enlisted the help of everyone to add reinforcing braces and hand constructed venting windows. Finally the plastic is on and now we’ve got more space for season extension. I’m not sure what we’d do without him for so many reasons! Hannah

Hannah


Did you know we have hundreds of recipes on our website and they can all be searched by ingredient? Simply visit www.VillageAcresFarm.com/recipe and search away. We are in the process of adding this year’s newsletter recipes but we’ve got tons to choose from. If you come across a recipe you particularly like, please send it and we’ll add it.

Recipe:  Stove Top Braised Cabbage and Apples

Bearrootsfarm.com

2 T olive oil
1 yellow onion, diced
1 jalapeño pepper, seeds removed & minced
1 large carrot, diced
1 small head of cabbage, finely sliced
1/4 – 1/2 c chicken or vegetable stock
2 apples, cored & sliced
1 T apple cider vinegar
kosher salt

In a large heavy pot, heat olive oil over medium heat and stir in the onion, jalapeño and carrots. Sauté until soft, being careful to not let the vegetables turn brown. Add in the cabbage, apples, vinegar and stock, turn down heat to a medium-low simmer and put a lid on the pot, giving things a stir occasionally. Add more stock if needed if you notice your pan is drying out. Cook until cabbage is soft, yielding and ready. Sprinkle with a little kosher salt if needed.
Serve with boiled potatoes, a fried egg with a runny yolk or some grated cheddar cheese. Hot sauce encouraged.


 

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