Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Big Red Farmstand, Wednesday November 20, 1pm to 5pm

Summertime visits to the farm...
Hello, friends --

We have arrived at the last Big Red Farmstand of the 2013 season, which will again take place just inside the doors of the Chapel, in recognition of the chilly weather.  There are exciting new veggies -- Brussels sprouts and a little bit of broccoli -- as well as plenty of lettuce, kale, and those extra-sweet, crunchy carrots.  We also have a contribution from another part of the farm this week: the first skeins of handspun yarn from our sheep!

Summertime veggies
We are enormously grateful to everyone who took home Big Red Farm produce this season.  We're honored to grow for you and and your families.  There are many, many people who helped to make our inaugural season as successful as it was, and I'd like to recognize some of them here, in no particular order.  Anna Hyson has been our stalwart, always-cheerful farmstand staffer and baby-minder, working every Wednesday afternoon this fall, as well as other times.  Dave Olsen keeps our 1953 Farmall Cub tractor in excellent working order, despite many setbacks.  Bill Flemer has done crucial work on numerous construction projects, including our chicken coops and hoophouses.  David Morrow serves as our general mechanical consultant, and heroically rescued the farm truck midseason.  Laura Schinagle, Will Flemer and Megan McInerney provided much-needed help with harvesting, weeding and fieldwork during the summer and fall.  Reuwai Hanewald and Jennifer Mayr integrated the farm into their classes, bringing students out to learn their science hands-on.  Vanessa Gieske turns our half-formed ideas into beautiful graphics, and makes sure that people out there in cyberspace know what's going on at the farm.  Our heartfelt thanks go out to each of these folks -- we couldn't do it without you!

Farm baby surveys broccoli plants on a warm fall day
photo by Megan McInerney
Thanks also to everyone who responded to our survey.  We really value your feedback as we plan for next season.  If you haven't had a chance to take the survey yet, you can do so here.  Also, don't forget that next week, in lieu of opening the stand, we will be taking pre-orders for Thanksgiving.  We'll send out an order form in the next couple of days (once we're sure of what's available); get your orders in by 9:00pm on Monday, 11/25, and pick-up will be Wednesday, 11/27, at the Chapel between 10:00am and noon.


Fall is the traditional season on the farm for culling extra animals in order to prepare for the long lean winter months. On the Big Red Farm, that means it's time for our extra roosters to go to their just reward.  We have about 20 still available, so please drop us a line if you would like a cleaned, plucked, oven-ready bird.

The roosters can be roasted whole, but are probably best suited to braised dishes, such as coq au vin, chicken and dumplings, or chicken pot pie -- unbeatable winter comfort foods. They also make really, really excellent stock. We will post some cooking suggestions and tips on breaking down a whole bird on the farm blog ( The price will be $2 per lb.

Here's how to get your rooster:
  • Send us an email at by 9:00 pm on Friday, 11/22, and tell us how many birds you'd like. 
  • Come to the farm between 2:00 and 4:00 pm on Saturday, 11/23, to pay for and take away your bird(s).
So, we hope you'll consider a locally raised, heritage breed, free range, humanely slaughtered rooster for one of your winter meals. In the age of the supermarket chicken, this is a worthwhile opportunity to enjoy the real thing.


As a lifelong knitter from a long line of knitters and handworkers, I've always wanted sheep.  I learned to spin as teenager, and since then it's just been a matter of waiting until I had the space to graze them.  Now, we're pleased to announce that the sheep are starting to pull their weight: the first few skeins of yarn will be available for sale this week! 

The yarn we'll have on Wednesday comes from two of our sheep; the black-brown wool is from Edgar, a Finnsheep, and the light fawn wool comes from Arlo, a Shetland.  The price for the yarn is $7.50 per 100-yard skein.  I'll be doing lots of spinning this winter (seven sheep means seven fleeces!), so drop a line if you'd like to be notified when more yarn is ready during the coming months.


Brussels sprouts somehow acquired a reputation for being That Vegetable that nobody likes to eat, and admittedly, when they're bad, they're bad.  When they're good, however, they're very, very good.  Sprouts are especially sweet after a good frost, which we've now had.  This is our favorite way to prepare them.  (Balsamic Braised Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta)


This week, we hope to have the following available on Wednesday, in the foyer of Edith Chapel, from 1pm to 5pm:
  • Arugula Salad Mix - $2.50 bag, limited quantity
  • Beets - $2.50 lb
  • Broccoli - $3.00 lb, limited quantity
  • Brussels Sprouts - $2.50 pint
  • Carrots - $2.50 lb
  • Kale - $2.50 bunch
  • Lettuce - $2.50 head


The Big Red Farmstand will be located on the Lawrenceville School campus for the fall, at Edith Chapel.  Enter campus by the main gate on Route 206 (opposite the Lawrenceville Post Office and Craven Lane) and bear right into the circle.  The Chapel is about halfway around the circle, and you'll see our sign.  Don't forget your shopping bags!

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