Tag Archives: Raw

Marcus McCauley and his son fermented cabbage

Fermenting, Farming, and Family: Meet Marcus McCauley of Picaflor and McCauley Family Farm

Marcus McCauley and his son fermenting kimchiMarcus McCauley named his brand Picaflor, the Spanish word for hummingbird. This flittering, pointy-nosed pollinator is believed to represent playfulness, enjoyment of life, resiliency, and in some cultures a bridge between the past and the future because of its unique ability to fly both backwards and forward. Given Picaflor’s origins and Marcus’s intentions, the hummingbird seems an apt mascot. Picaflor, which crafts and sells fermented hot sauces and pepper flakes, was born from a fortuitous event on Marcus’ farm.

As the story goes, a local farmer approached Marcus and said, “I’ve got a ton of peppers. If you can do something with them, you can have them.” Marcus recalls that there were at least 2,000 pounds of peppers. He accepted the bounty and the challenge, and started fermenting and experimenting. Before long, his garage was filled with overflowing, bubbling buckets of fermenting deliciousness. The first hot sauce he crafted was a sriracha that immediately gained a dedicated local following of his friends and family. He was now the hot sauce guy, and there was no turning back. Continue reading Fermenting, Farming, and Family: Meet Marcus McCauley of Picaflor and McCauley Family Farm

Meet Kirsten K. and Christopher Shockey: Authors, Educators, and Fermentation Evangelists

Kirsten & Christopher ShockeyKirsten Shockey and her husband Christopher are the founders and co-owners of Ferment Works, a fermentation education company in Oregon. Their goals at Ferment Works are to help people learn to ferment, teach them how to create great flavors, and (most importantly) help them feel comfortable enough to do it at home alone or with friends and family.

Kirsten and Christopher live on a 40-acre farm in the Applegate Valley of Southern Oregon. As homesteaders, they’ve raised and homeschooled four children, grown fruit trees and gardens, nurtured animals, and fermented thousands of pounds of vegetables and other plants. Kirsten and Christopher work, write books, and teach classes and workshops together. They’re also working to build an online community gathering space for those who are passionate about fermentation. Continue reading Meet Kirsten K. and Christopher Shockey: Authors, Educators, and Fermentation Evangelists

Cheesemaking Tips from Gianaclis Caldwell, Author of Mastering Basic Cheesemaking

headshot2 maraMara Rose
Founder & CEO, Hatch Lab

 

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Meet Gianaclis (Gee-on-a-klees) Caldwell. She lives in Southern Oregon on land her parents bought in the 1940s, where she was raised to be self-sufficient—not because it was cool but because it was necessary. Her family grew much of their own food, and they had cows for milk and dairy products. She explains, “My mom canned all summer. She knew exactly how many quarts of string beans, how many quarts of tomatoes we needed to make it through the winter.” Though Gianaclis moved away from the land for nearly 23 years and enjoyed a succession of careers including as a nurse and an installation artist, she returned to the property with her husband and daughters in 2005 to build Pholia Farm. Continue reading Cheesemaking Tips from Gianaclis Caldwell, Author of Mastering Basic Cheesemaking

Abuzz About Bees: Sourcing Honey, Bonding with Bees, and Caring for the Planet

Probably anyone who’s been to Boulder, Colorado’s farmers market knows Tim Brod, owner of Highland Honey Bees. He lends his larger-than-life personality to the cause of the bee and doles out sweet dollops of honey and wisdom to the passersby. He’s a lover of bees, with a lifetime of experience, and very clear ideas about how to properly care for buzzing beauties and their honey. I caught up with Tim over herbal tea (with lots of honey) and a shot of moonshine at his honey-processing headquarters in Longmont, Colorado. I asked about his passion and tried to gain some wisdom about how to buy great honey and what we can all do to protect and nurture the essential honeybee.

Meet the Beekeeper
A beekeeper since he was a child, Tim explains, “I was one of those kids whose greatest joy was to be outdoors. I grew up with a love of people and a love of animals and a love of the interactions between them. I loved looking at systems.” He grew up in the 1960s in semirural Connecticut, and it was his grandfather’s brother, Crozier, who first connected him with the industrious buzzer. Back then, learning to be a beekeeper was easy, according to Tim. “Until 20 years ago, you really didn’t have to do much for bees. The world was a lot different then. Strategies that worked for millions of years haven’t for the past 15.” Continue reading Abuzz About Bees: Sourcing Honey, Bonding with Bees, and Caring for the Planet

Urban Goat Dairy Dishes on Cheese Making, Raw Milk, and Land Stewardship {simple recipe included}

headshot2 maraMara Rose
Founder & CEO, Hatch Lab

 

In Boulder, Colorado, a pastoral plot of land sits on the north side of town, facing one of the city’s busiest roads. It’s called Long’s Gardens, and it’s a 25-acre plot that’s been actively farmed for nearly 100 years. A portion of the land is leased to Capricorn-1-by-Lisa-980x600two nonprofit organizations—Growing Gardens and Mountain Flower Urban Goat Dairy (Mountain Flower).

On a recent summer morning, I joined chef-turned-goat-farmer Michael Montgomery at a shaded picnic table on the four acres leased to Mountain Flower. I was interested in learning more about the dairy, the inspiration behind it, and some helpful cheese-making tips. Michael is the dairy’s co-director, working with Taber Ward who founded the organization in 2012.

About Mountain Flower
Mountain Flower provides raw goat milk to about 100 lucky families. Additional customers are currently waitlisted because the demand far outstrips the supply, and the dairy’s production and inventory levels vary throughout the year. Michael explains, “A lot of it has to do with the length of the day, so on the longest days of the year, we have more milk, which means we can give more milk to humans. We also give a lot of our milk to the young goats. The kids get milk for up to three months, which is a lot of milk.”

However, Mountain Flower works to do much more than provide milk to 100 families. “[We were] founded as a demonstration micro dairy. Continue reading Urban Goat Dairy Dishes on Cheese Making, Raw Milk, and Land Stewardship {simple recipe included}

What’s Up with Elderberry Syrup?

“Some people call me Elder Tree Mother, and some call me the Dryad, but my real name is Memory. It is I who sit up in the tree that grows on and on, and I can remember and I can tell stories.” —Hans Christian Andersen

T hat’s an excerpt from the Hans Christian Andersen story The Elder-Tree Mother. The folklore and myth around the elder tree are rich, diverse, and worth exploring, as are the potential health benefits. We invite you to understand more about the tree and its berries, and then learn to make your own elderberry syrup by taking the Hatch Lab class, Concoct Elderberry Syrup. Elderberry syrup was one of my first medicine-making endeavors, and I’m confident you’ll enjoy creating, sharing, and using it in it as much as I do.

ckHatchLab_Elderberry-177webThis class is special to me for a couple of reasons. First, I love Rebecca’s Apothecary, a beautiful Boulder, Colorado, herb shop. For several years, my office was directly above it and I visited often – to buy gifts, to solve my family’s mysterious ailments, and to learn from the knowledgeable and friendly herbalists on staff. Rebecca and her team inspired me and planted many of the seeds that eventually grew into Hatch Lab. Visiting the store ignited a passion in me and a deep desire to study and use plants for healing. When it came time to launch Hatch Lab, I knew I wanted Rebecca to be involved. Continue reading What’s Up with Elderberry Syrup?