(shhhh… we are having a SALE)

 

Hello, most fabulous supporters of local farmers!  You are all eating the change you wish to see in the world, and we thank you for it.

We are preparing for a new growing season, and thus having a SALE!  Our stock won’t last long (we are already out of hams and pork chops), so for the best selection call (250-642-5445), or send an email (castironfarmsooke@gmail.com) or facebook message, and we’ll put together an order for pickup this Saturday morning.  You are (of course!) welcome to stop by at our regular farm gate stand, Saturdays between 10 and 12, but stock will be dwindling.

(but what IS the sale, farmer Erin?)

The sale shall proceed thusly:  Anything that is currently in our freezer shall be $2 off the regular per-pound price.  Bacon is usually $15/lb, so while we still have bacon, it will be reduced to $13/lb.  Make sense?  If you have any questions, please contact us and we’d be happy to sort them out.

Happy New Year!

Sausage Party!

Hello, beautiful people!

Did you know you can sign up to receive updates?  On the sidebar, you’ll see a spot you can put in your name and email address, so you can get a notification whenever I post something.  Facebook is not a great way to stay in touch, because facebook only shows you what it thinks you want to see, in order to get you to spend more time there.. and sometimes it’s wrong 🙂

We have SOMETHING NEW!  We are having Edward at Black Market Meats make some sausage and bacon for us.  He does small-batch, artisanal sausage, and was completely aghast at the thought of it when we asked him if he uses pre-made spice mixes.

We will have Edward’s sausages and bacon for sale within the next few weeks, and will be selling them at our regular sausage price ($12/lb).  For people that love sausages, and want to try them all, we have a Sausage Party Pack: 3 flavours of Cast Iron sausage for $30.

Let us know how we can help you get happy pork into happy bellies.  We are available on facebook, phone (250-642-5445), or email (name of farm + sooke at gmail).

Sunday Market!

We’ll be at the Sooke Indoor Marketplace this Sunday, selling pork and APPLE CIDER!  We only have a limited number of boxes of cider from local, unsprayed, heritage trees, pressed in a foodsafe kitchen by Pressing Matters.  Each box contains 5 litres of juice, and the box is shelf stable (until opened) until the spring.  Once you have opened it, the box will keep nicely for a couple of weeks in your fridge.  It is full of flavour, and makes excellent mulled cider.

AND WE HAVE PORK!  All cuts currently available.  We (may) have space for one last family pack before we close large orders for a few months while our little piggies grow up.  Let me know ASAP if you are interested.

For more information about the market, check out their facebook page: <https://www.facebook.com/sookeindoormarketplace/>

Cast Iron Bannock (or, Bread Thingies!)

Cast Iron Bannock (or, Bread Thingies)

This is a favourite recipe in cold weather.  If you have less than 9 people (plus farm-helper guests) in your household, you may want to make a half batch.  This has been a great success with one of our farm people that is allergic to wheat.. she can eat things made from this dough after a few days of fermentation.

3 c warm water
1.5 Tbsp yeast
1.5 Tbsp salt
6.5 cups flour (at least 5 c white flour for best results, rest can be mixed other flours)

Mix the water and yeast in a big bowl, let it sit a bit so that the yeast dissolves.  Add salt and flours, mix.  Cover.  Place somewhere warm and ignore for at least 12 hours.  If you have a cold pantry where you can keep it, the dough stays usable for up to 5 days (after which it gets a bit too alcoholic), or you can keep it in the fridge.  For best results,  give the dough a bit of time to warm up if it’s kept really chilled.

Use resulting dough to make:

BREAD THINGIES: Take a scoop of dough, stuff it with whatever cooked ingredients please you. (Cheese and jam! Bacon and cheese!  Pork and leeks!  Chocolate and marshmallows!  Pulled pork!  The chunky bits from leftover stew!)
Fry in lots of fat (lard is best) until both sides are golden and it has risen a bit (at least 5 mins).

BREAD or BUNS: add enough flour to allow you to form it on a baking dish without being a sloppy mess, cook at 350-425 until done.  Very nice crust when you cook it in a pre-heated dutch oven, high heat, with the lid on.

PIZZA: Roll it out on a heavily floured surface, with lots of flour on top, so it doesn’t stick to your rolling pin.  Put pizza stuff on top.  Cook like pizza.

The possibilities are endless!!  Have you tried something like this before?  Tell us your secret recipe.. please?

October Pork!

We have resupplied on all porky goodness, at least until you fine people buy it all again.  We have a few Family Packs available (27 lbs, variety of cuts, $250), and are happy to make you up a box of delicious pork to fit any budget.  Take a look at our price lists (above in the title bar) to see what could best suit your family.

We get a variety of breeds of piglet from different small local breeders, and these ones were a Landrace cross, meaning that the meat is a bit more lean than we have had in the past.  This is good news for meaty bacon lovers, but not so much for people that enjoy making their own lard. Let us know if you are interested in lard, and I’ll see if I can find you a good bag of pork fat – if not, we’ll have some in our next batch.  I usually include a bag of fat with every family pack.  Making lard is easy!  Lard is full of Vitamin D, and we use it as our main cooking oil.

Our pigs are fed lots of different kinds of food – everything from organic salad mix, to beets, to yoghurt, to chicken.  Pigs are omnivores, and do best on a widely varied diet.  We also give them a bit of bread and pig kibble, and occasionally cake or pie (they LOVE that).  They even get sushi!  Our animals eat near- or past-dates food from a grocery store – the food is on the shelves for sale in the morning, in the fridges at the back of the store in the afternoon, and in our truck headed back to the farm for sorting in the early evening.  It is more work for us, to feed our animals this way, but both for the quality of the animals and the saving of good food from turning into waste, we believe that it is well worth the effort.  If you want to know more about this program, ask a question – I can go on and on about how wonderful it is for small farmers, farm animals, grocery stores, and the planet 🙂

Pork available at Sooke Fall Fair

Hello, lovely people!  We will be selling pork at the Sooke Fall Fair this weekend!  A fresh batch of pigs means MORE BACON!!  These pigs made leaner bacon than we’ve had previously – it is interesting to see the difference in the pork as we try out different breeds of pig, and different proportions of feed.  Danish Landrace pigs (these are a Landrace cross) are well known for their length and their excellent bacon.

Thanks to our delightful, fabulous, and hungry customers, we sold out of bacon in a week last time, and pretty much everything else in the second week,  so come see us early!  The market runs from 10-2.

See you there!

 

Pigs Headed Out!

Our latest batch of pigs have just headed out, and they are looking great!  These two sows are a Duroc/Hampshire+Landrace/Yorkshire cross, and they came to us from a large pig breeder in Alberta.   The pigs are a mix of quick-growing commercial breeds, and Danish Landrace are well known for their length and excellent bacon.  These pigs are long and lean(ish), and should make excellent pork.

Usually, we like to buy local piglets, but there were none available to us this spring.  One strange thing that happened due to these piglets coming from a large breeder: their tails are docked.  This is common for large pig operations, because pigs that are kept together in higher concentrations tend to get a bit neurotic.  Sometimes, a pig will chew on the tail of the pig in front, resulting in infections and injury (which no one wants), so the solution that the large pig producers use is to dock all tails, which causes the end of each docked tail to be exquisitely sensitive.  If a docked tail is chewed, the affected pig will immediately remove their tail from the zone of chewing.  Our pigs still wave their tail-stubs around when they are especially happy, it just looks a little odd.

These pigs have especially enjoyed: fried chicken, and having the hose turned on so they can decide to run through the spray.

We will be accepting orders for sides from these pigs until August 12th, and thereafter will be accepting orders for freezer packs.  Any pork that is left will be sold in individual pieces at the Sooke Country Market on Saturdays.