Author Archive

Threshing and Cleaning at Ayers Creek

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

On Friday April 2nd, Laura, Kellee and myself had the chance to make a trip out to Ayers Creek farm in Gaston with all of our dry beans and the remaining bits of our popping corn. Anthony and Carol Boutard own and run Ayers Creek farm where they supply a bounty of local beans, grains, corn and a plethora of other produce to the Oregon food markets. We made the trip not only to see first hand a wonderful and innovative farm operation but also to use their fun bean threshing and corn shelling machines! This was quite the experience in fun and efficient farm tools. The bean thresher can easily separate two 40 pound bags of dry beans in about 10 minutes which might take all of us a full days worth of work by hand. After using the thresher the beans were then poured into a cleaner which, with a series of differently sized and shaped plates pulsing in opposite directions, further removed unwanted debris and irregular beans. At the very end of the assembly line we traded out hand sorting the beans one more time to ensure the beautiful crops you will all be receiving in your shares.   

After the beans were all threshed and cleaned we used a hand cranked corn sheller(pictured above) which was mounted on a containment surface to shell the popping corn from the cobs. Though we got to use a bit more muscle with this machine, the efficiency and ease with which it worked was most incredible. To learn more about the machines we used and growing grains, dry beans and corn in the oregon area you should check out Anthony’s blog.

I hope you all enjoy the beautiful beans and corn in your share!

What’s Cookin?

Tuesday, August 25th, 2009

Fellow farm enthusiasts, as this is my first entry of the season, due entirely to conditions beyond my control I assure you, and because it is no less and certainly no more than fifteen minutes before I must be on to other tasks, I would very much like to begin my blogging career with a tempting description of the new arrivals in your share this week. The two, to which I would like to send the most admiration and concentration are no strangers to palates around the world; the juicy tomato and the delectable basil. Now, I am a firm believer in a proactive approach to the well being of your food, and part of this, as it is so commonly experienced among those of us in the human race, is to send fuzzy feelings in the form of compliments and self esteem boosters to your desired target. Take the tomato for instance, this Stupice Tomato is among one of the juicier varieties. As a young plant the mere notion that juicy ripe tomatoes would hang low from the tendrils of this very stalk seemed so far away. Now the plants are strong and healthy and the fruit is plentiful. So why not take a moment to recognize what an excellent feat of strength and finesse the plant has accomplished? There’s no harm in telling your tomato what a good looking pizza topper they may become. I’m almost positive they may grow a couple inches overnight if you point out that those fruits are lookin’ as fine as angel hair pasta, maybe with a little parmesan on top. And if you want to go out on a limb, might as well mention that they are as hot as a spicy salsa on a warm afternoon. They may blush a shade deeper just for you.  The basil may take a little tamer approach. After all it is still an herb. You can mention in passing, that it smells as good as fresh focaccia topped with olive oil. Tell them they remind you of a late summer in the Italian countryside. I’m sure the flavor would just be bursting beneath the shy leaves. All of these compliments, will have your veggies standing tall and proud and will provide you with a creative and fun outlet to both care for and prepare your food. If none of these lines do the trick you can always say, What’s cookin’ good lookin’? Works every time.