Tag Archives: recipes

Organic. It’s Worth It-New Website

This weekend the whole family had a chance to experience the MOSES Organic Farming Conference. Over 3300 farmers were in attendance making it the largest organic farming conference in the nation. This conference is one of my favorite conferences of the year. I am not sure if it is all the delicious organic food, the great chance to meet awesome and inspiring organic farmers, or all the new ideas that we take away. While wondering the trade show with a sleeping baby, I found the Organic Trade Association booth.

They have a new website that is a go to for all things in organic information. Need information on what the Organic label means? What to learn why did it is important to eat organic food? Need tips to make buying organic affordable? This website has it all: Organic. It’s Worth It.

organic worth it food family farm usda

There is a lot of great information on this website. I recommend it to anyone who has questions about organic food and organic farming. There is also a section with recipes (but  any recipe can be organic, just use organic ingredients).

Enjoy!
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Cook Organic this Holiday Season-Family Friday

EEECK I just agreed to host Christmas Eve celebrations at my house. What was I thinking? Well, it actually makes sense. Being dairy farmers whose cows do not take the holiday off, it is just easier if the party comes to us. Instead of: chores, milking, drive, party, drive, chores, milking…which often results in crabby kids, crabby parents and annoyed cows (since we are often late). There will be more Falalala in our holiday.

With Thanksgiving about a week away, it is a good time to start making those holiday cooking plans. I never need an excuse to bake, but my baking goes in high gear this time of year. Thankfully, Organic Valley has a great website full of delicious, healthy and organic recipes. Organic Valley’s Holiday Food Guide

click for source

I have heard great things about Organic Valley’s eggnog. Since I am FINALLY not pregnant this year, I think I will indulge a bit.

Check out this fabulous recipe: Spice Eggnog Cheesecake with Gingersnap Crust

Flavors of eggnog, gingerbread and spices cheer on the season in this delicious cheesecake.

  • 23 cups ground gingersnap cookies (8 ounces)
  • 12 tablespoons Organic Valley Butter, melted
  • 24 ounces Organic Valley Cream Cheese, softened (three 8-ounce packages)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 12 whole nutmeg, freshly grated (or 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg)
  • 18 teaspoon freshly ground cloves
  • Organic Valley large eggs
  • 12 cups Organic Valley Eggnog
  • 14 cup spiced rum or brandy (or 2 teaspoons rum extract)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Crust: Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine ground gingersnaps and melted butter. Reserve 1/4 cup of the mixture. Press the remaining mixture into the bottom and partially up the sides of a 9-inch spring form pan. Bake 10 minutes. Set crust aside to cool (but leave the oven on).

2. Filling: Use electric beaters at medium speed to cream cheese for 4 minutes, occasionally scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Gradually beat in sugar and flour and continue beating 3 minutes, scraping sides occasionally. Grate 1/2 of a whole nutmeg over surface of batter, add cloves and blend the spices into the mixture. Beat in eggs one at a time. Beat in egg nog, spiced rum and vanilla.

3. To bake: Gently pour filling into crust. Bake until cheesecake is lightly browned and  instant thermometer inserted in center reads 160 degrees, 60 to 70 minutes. Turn off oven, open the door halfway and leave cheesecake inside until the oven has cooled off, 20-30 minutes. Transfer cheesecake to a cooling rack and run a thin-bladed knife around and inside its outer edges. (This will help prevent a crack from forming on the surface.) Cool cheesecake to room temperature. Sprinkle reserved gingersnaps over the cake. Chill cheesecake thoroughly before serving.

Copyright by Terese Allen

Ohh YUM!!!

Leave a comment with your favorite recipe for the holiday season. I am always looking to try something new.

Emily

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Pork Sausage Recipes-Quick, Easy & Healthy

We are finalizing our pork orders. Contact us today if you want a freezer full of healthy pork this winter. Space is limited and we sell out, so don’t wait.

I love using pork sausage. Pork is also very healthy for you. It is good source of iron, magnesium, thiamine, and more. Learn more at the Pork Check Off. If cut right, pork is also a very lean source of protein. Due to the way we feed our pigs, our pork tends to be a little fattier than what you will find at the supermarket. We believe this adds more flavor to the meat. If you are concerned about fat content, you can always ask us to cut your meat extra lean.

Here are a couple of my favorite pork sausage recipes:

Homemade Pizza: Brown up a half a pound of sausage and use it as a topping on homemade pizza. When you order sausage from us you can chose either regular or Italian sausage. We usually have regular sausage and just add Italian seasoning when I am browning it.

Stuff shells: Brown a half a pound of sausage with Italian seasoning. Meanwhile cook 8oz of jumbo shells according to directions. Drain shells and rinse in cold water. Add sausage to shells, top with a jar of spaghetti sauce and 1/2 cup mozzarella and 1/2 cup Parmesan cheeses. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or so.There are more fancier recipes out on the internet.

Breakfast sausage: Don’t think that breakfast sausages has to be in links. Mix your favorite seasoning into your pork sausage and make into small patties. Brown in a fry pan.

Meatball sandwiches: Make up meatballs (1lb sausage, 2 tsp Italian seasoning, 1 egg slightly beaten, 1/4 Italian bread crumbs) and cook for 12 minutes or so at 450 degrees. Place meatballs in a hotdog or hoggie bun, top with marinara sauce and cheese. Broil for 3-5 minutes until cheese melts.

Holiday Morning Egg Bake: My mom would always make this  egg bake for special holiday mornings.

  • 9 eggs beaten
  • 7 or 8 slices of bread- take off crusts and break up
  • 1 cup grated cheddar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp mustard
  • 1 lb sausage browned
  • 2 cups milk
  1. Mix all the ingredients and bake in buttered 9 x13 pan for 1 hour at 350 degrees.

There a just a few of my favorite ways to use pork sausage. Be sure to order plenty the next time your order pork from Zweber Farms.

 

Hunk of Meat Mondays

Emily


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Grill It Up Zweber Farms’ Style

photo from Myrecipes.com

Those of you who know me best, know that I am a public radio fanatic. It is my connection to many different thoughts, ideas, people, cultures and issues. As a wanna  be foodie, I really like the Splendid Table show. When I received the Splendid Table cookbook, “The Splendid Table’s How to Eat Supper,” for Christmas this past year, I read it front to back like a novel. There are lot of great recipes in the book, but my favorite is the Crossover Spice Blend.

Crossover Spice Blend:

  • 1/4 cup ground cumin
  • 1/2 cup ground coriander
  • 1/8 cup fresh-ground black pepper

Blend the spices together in a jar, and seal. Store away from heat and light for up to 3-4 months.

The authors suggest: “rub or sprinkle the blend over vegetables and meats when roasting, saute it into stews and soups, and use it as a finishing spice on salads and grains. Try mixing the blend with an equal amount of brown sugar and rubbing it into meat before placing them on the grill. Them same mix offers a new take on grilled fresh pineapple.” YUM!

My favorite way to use this spice is to blend it with a little bit of Kosher salt and rub on lamb chops, pork chops or steaks and either bake or grill.  Hopefully, you bought pork or beef from Zweber Farms last fall and you have a freezer full of great grilling items. If not, make sure to get on our waiting list, so that you are ready next year.

Speaking of waiting lists. We don’t have a waiting list for our chickens, but if you would like them pre-cut you do need to order by next week.

Happy Grilling!

Emily

Zweber Farms is a 4th generation family operated organic dairy. We also specialize in sustainably raised beef, pork and chicken and sell it directly to customers in Minnesota.Visit our website to learn more, http://www.zweberfarms.com

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June is Dairy Month!

Did you know that June is Dairy Month? That is right, all month long you can celebrate by eating ice cream, cheese, yogurt, cottage cheese, pudding, and of course drinking milk. National Dairy Month was started in 1937 by national chain retail stores. It was started as a way to push surplus milk. Even though it is slightly less true now than then, the spring months are the months where the most milk is produced. There are two main reasons for a spring surplus of milk. Traditionally, many farmers seasonally calved. This meant that  they would have most of their cows give birth in the spring when the weather was nicer. Cows have their highest production right after calving. The second reason is that pastures are lush and rich with nutrients this time of year.

Today, June is Dairy Month is a celebration shared by retailers, processors and producers. As dairy producers, we use this month to highlight how dairy farmers produce a wholesome and nutritious product. Tim and I will be reading dairy story books at the New Market Library on June 25th at 11am. We will also have some help from a surprise four legged guest. Sam will be representing Scott County Dairy Association as a Dairy Princess. She will handing out ice cream at local banks and riding on floats in local parades.

To hold your own celebration of dairy products, you may want to try out a new dairy recipe. Here are two of my favorite dairy recipe websites:

As I am typing this I am enjoying homemade popsicles I made by freezing some Organic Valley Live Drinkable Yogurt. Yum! I cannot wait for our strawberry patch to be ready. I am going to blend the yogurt and strawberries and have healthy, yummy treats. For supper tonight I am going to be making a homemade pizza and of course we always load on the cheese.

Make sure you have your 3-A-Day everyday. Our lovely ladies produce about 900 glasses of milk each day; so drink up!

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Sage Crock-Pot Chicken plus Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo

I know I have posted many chicken recipes lately, but cooking up a Zweber Farms chicken is really easy when you use the crock-pot. When days are nice and many things need to done outside, the crock-pot is my time saver.

Sage Crock-Pot Chicken

  • Zweber farms Whole Chicken
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 3-4 springs of fresh sage
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Place the chicken in crock-pot. I will even put it in frozen. Pour wine over chicken. Tuck springs of sage under wings and in butt. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  2. Cook on low for 6-8 hrs. The chicken is done when internal temp is 175 degrees.

With the left overs you can make a yummy Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo.

  • 2 cups leftover Sage Crock-Pot Chicken
  • 8 oz fettuccine (or any type of noodle, I always use penne so that the boys can pick it up)
  • 4 tablespoons Organic Valley butter
  • 1 cup Organic Valley whipping cream or whole milk
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Optional: 1 can of diced tomatoes drained.
  1. Prepare pastas as directed on package.
  2. Melt butter in wide saucepan. Add 1/2 cup cream and boil until thickened.
  3. Reduce heat to medium; add 1/2 of pasta. Mix gently
  4. Add 1/2 cheese and 1/4 cream. Mix gently
  5. Add remaining pasta and remaining  cream. Mix gently
  6. Add chicken and heat through.
  7. To make it a one pot meal, I will add the diced tomatoes and top with extra cheese

Serve both meals with a crunchy side salad and a tall glass of Organic Valley milk.

Enjoy!

Emily

Zweber Farms is a 4th generation family operated organic dairy. We also specialize in sustainably raised beef, pork and chicken and sell it directly to customers in Minnesota.Visit our website to learn more, http://www.zweberfarms.com

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Filed under Chickens, Cooking

Pork Sausage Recipes are Quick, Easy and Healthy

I love using pork sausage. Pork is also very healthy for you. It is good source of iron, magnesium, thiamine, and more. Learn more at the Pork Check Off. If cut right, pork is also a very lean source of protein. Due to the way we feed our pigs, our pork tends to be a little fattier than what you will find at the supermarket. We believe this adds more flavor to the meat. If you are concerned about fat content, you can always ask us to cut your meat extra lean.

Here are a couple of my favorite pork sausage recipes:

Homemade Pizza: Brown up a half a pound of sausage and use it as a topping on homemade pizza. When you order sausage from us you can chose either regular or Italian sausage. We usually have regular sausage and just add Italian seasoning when I am browning it.

Stuff shells: Brown a half a pound of sausage with Italian seasoning. Meanwhile cook 8oz of jumbo shells according to directions. Drain shells and rinse in cold water. Add sausage to shells, top with a jar of spaghetti sauce and 1/2 cup mozzarella and 1/2 cup Parmesan cheeses. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or so.There are more fancier recipes out on the internet.

Breakfast sausage: Don’t think that breakfast sausages has to be in links. Mix your favorite seasoning into your pork sausage and make into small patties.

Meatball sandwiches: Make up meatballs (1lb sausage, 2 tsp Italian sausage, 1 egg slightly beaten, 1/4 Italian bread crumbs) and cook for 12 minutes or so at 450 degrees. Place meatballs in a hotdog or hoggie bun, top with marinara sauce and cheese. Broil for 3-5 minutes until cheese melts.

Holiday Morning Egg Bake: My mom would always make this  egg bake for special holiday mornings.

  • 9 eggs beaten
  • 7 or 8 slices of bread- take off crusts and break up
  • 1 cup grated cheddar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp mustard
  • 1 lb sausage browned
  • 2 cups milk
  1. Mix all the ingredients and bake in buttered 9 x13 pan for 1 hour at 350 degrees.

There a just a few of my favorite ways to use pork sausage. Be sure to order plenty the next time your order pork from Zweber Farms.

Notes from the farm: Can we ask for better weather. 70 degrees for the last day of March. Jon and Tim are hoping to get manure hauled on to the fields today and then disked in capture all the nutrients. The rain that is predicted this weekend will be prefect to get the fields ready for planting small grains next week.

Emily

Zweber Farms is a 4th generation family operated organic dairy. We also specialize in sustainably raised beef, pork and chicken and sell it directly to customers in Minnesota.Visit our website to learn more, http://www.zweberfarms.com

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    Sunny Day Recipes: Pantry Stir Fry and Homemade Yogurt

    Jonnie helping w/ calf chores tonight

    Today was a lovely day at the Zweber Farm. You cannot ask for a better March day then 55 degrees and sunny. On days like these I don’t want to spend all day inside cooking. I want to be out playing with my boys or getting some work done on the farm.

    Today after lunch I wiped up a batch of homemade yogurt. Yes, homemade yogurt is really easy to make. All you need is two quarts of milk (Don’t use Ultra Pasteurized) and a tablespoon of plain yogurt. I buy Stoneyfields single serve plain yogurt. Even though Organic Valley doesn’t produce a yogurt, some of our milk is sent to Stoneyfield to be made into yogurt.

    Steps:

    • Heat milk in large pot until it reaches 180 degrees
    • Cool milk to 112 degrees
    • mix a couple tablespoons of milk with tablespoon of plain yogurt
    • Add  the yogurt mix and the remaining milk to your yogurt maker and wait 6-10 hours

    I have read on the internet that you can make yogurt in the oven too. The whole point of the maker is to keep the milk at a constant warm temperature.

    Now I have great tasting yogurt all week. I will add some honey or fruit to my bowl of yogurt each morning.

    For supper tonight I made a Pantry Stir Fry. I call it “pantry” because when I make stir fry I just look to see what is in my pantry and add to my heart’s content. Stir Fry isn’t tricky and is super fast and healthy. When you order your Zweber Farms beef, make sure to order some stir fry meat. You can also cut up a round steak or a sirloin steak.

    Here is what I did tonight

    • Cut up veggies. I used a green pepper, some green onions, carrots and snow peas.
    • Heated up 1 tbs oil in wok
    • Added half the beef (you want fry half the beef at a time so it doesn’t stew) and 1 garlic clove minced
    • Cooked for about 3 minutes, stirring constantly
    • Transferred beef to bowl
    • Added other half of beef and other garlic clove minced
    • Cooked for 3 minutes then transferred to bowl
    • Added veggies to wok and cooked

    This is where the pantry part comes in. I added a dash for ground ginger, pinch of salt, a dash of sugar, 2 splashes fish sauce, 1 splash rice vinegar, and 4 splashes soy sauce.  Taste as you work and don’t be afraid.

    • After veggies are crisp-tender, add the meat back in and stir until heated.

    Serve this over warm rice and of course with a large glass of Organic Valley Milk.

    Tomorrow is suppose to be another warm and sunny day. Spend time outside and enjoy a quick healthy stir fry meal. It is also Steven’s 21st birthday! Happy early birthday Steve.

    Emily

    Zweber Farms is a 4th generation family operated organic dairy. We also specialize in sustainably raised beef, pork and chicken and sell it directly to customers in Minnesota.Visit our website to learn more, http://www.zweberfarms.com

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    Is Organic Food Affordable? Day 4

    Now on to day four in my quest to discover if organic foods can be affordable. During this week I am doing a lot of reflecting on how I purchase, prepare and eat food. I remember when I was fresh out of college and living on my own, I would spend almost $100 a week on food. That was just for MYSELF. Now I spend about $100 (including milk and meat) for our family of four. Difference is now I plan, choose very high quality products and make complete homemade meals. We hardly have any junk food in our house and include lots of fruits and veggies that fill us up.

    Let us see how today went.

    Breakfast: I know that I stated in my post yesterday that I try to avoid organic cereal. It is usually really expensive. I have found an exception. At Sam’s Club you can by a 35oz box of Nature’s Path Organic cereal for $7.48. We use cold cereal for those mornings when we just want to eat now. Today was one of those days. We had cereal (organic $7.48/35oz), milk (organic $4.50/gallon), green tea (organic $3.37/box) and the last of those peaches (organic $3.79/lb).

    • Cereal $2.07
    • Milk $1.25
    • Peach $3.00
    • Green Tea $0.21
      • Total: $6.55 or $1.63 per person

    Lunch: Today I made homemade pizza. Pizza is a favorite of ours and I always make the crust. I use a recipe from Allrecipes.com. It makes three crusts, so you can bake them all and have two left over to top another day. With this meal we also had milk.

    • Crust
      • 2.5 tsp yeast (I buy bulk $0.09)
      • 1 tbs sugar (Crystal sugar $0.01)
      • 2.5 cups water (freeish)
      • 2 tbs olive oil (organic $0.13)
      • 1 tbs salt ($0.03)
      • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour (organic $0.16)
      • 5.5 cups bread flour (local $0.38)
        • subtotal for crust $0.8/3 crusts or $0.27 per crust
      • Green Pepper (organic $3.79/lb) ($1.23 for one)
      • Tomato Paste (organic $1.42/can) used about $0.35
      • Zweber Farm pork sausage ($2.03/lb) used about $1.02
      • Mushrooms (organic $3.00/lb) used about $.75
      • Mozzarella cheese (organic $3.99/6oz) used $2.00
      • Milk $1.25
        • Total for lunch: $6.87 or $1.72 per person.

    Whoot! The best part is that we had enough left over pizza for dinner. So dinner only cost us $1.25 ($0.31/person) for the fresh farm milk.

    Today’s grand total: $14.67 or $3.66 per person.

    Can you believe it? I think that I am on to something here. Organic food is looking very affordable to me.

    Emily

    Zweber Farms is a 4th generation family operated organic dairy. We also specialize in sustainably raised beef, pork and chicken and sell it directly to customers in Minnesota.Visit our website to learn more, http://www.zweberfarms.com

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    Filed under co-op shopping, Cooking, family, Organic Valley

    Chicken and Biscuit Recipe

    Yesterday, I cooked a Zweber Farm Chicken in the crockpot. Then today, I was looking for something interesting to do with the leftovers. I was growing tired of chicken noodle soup (Tim’s favorite). I stumbled upon a good recipe to use up leftover chicken.

    The Chicken ‘n’ Biscuit recipe on Allrecipes was a winner. I did change it a bit and added a can of cream of celery and used 1/2 cup of milk when making the biscuits (the author forgot to put the milk amount).

    Don’t have any Zweber Farm chickens in your freezer? Give us a call or visit our website (www.zweberfarms.com). We still have plenty left, but be warned, we usually sell out in late winter/early spring.

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