KinderKrisp, U-Pick Raspberries, and Corn Maze

KinderKrisp

credit: Helen Rosner

credit: Helen Rosner

The time has come. Many of you have been asking me when our KinderKrisp apples will be available and the answer is NEXT WEEKEND, that being the first weekend of September. We will have bags available in our retail shop and at the Annandale Farmers Market. For those who are not familiar, KinderKrisp is an apple variety developed by Fairhaven Farm owner/operator David Macgregor. You may know David as the slightly disheveled, eccentric guy that drives the tractor between the orchard and barn, and who may resemble Beatrix Potter’s Mr.McGregor character at times. David first got involved in the fruit business when he was breeding grapes in his teenage years. Since then, he has moved onto breeding new varieties of apples that we are excited to offer at our farm. KinderKrisp is our most popular apple, with a wonderful sweet-tart flavor, and a crisp texture reminiscent of Honeycrisp. It’s the perfect size for kids’ lunchbox.

You can read more about KinderKrisp here in an article featured in gourmet food magazine, Saveur.

U-Pick Raspberries

IMG_4043I’ve also been receiving dozens of inquiries about U-Pick raspberries just about anytime I leave the farm. I’m happy to announce that the patch will be open Labor Day weekend. Show up to pick any day between 10 am and 6pm. Enter through the barn and someone will instruct you on where and how to pick. We charge by the pound, and please bring your own containers.

Corn Maze

IMG_3386I’ve been pretending I’m a studio arts major these past few weeks, while designing and painting the characters for this year’s corn maze. What book series includes rabbits, frogs, ducks, kittens, and a grumpy old man? This year’s theme: The wonderful world of Peter Rabbit and friends created by writer and illustrator Beatrix Potter. If you live anywhere in central Minnesota you’ll know that this summer’s rain has encourage the corn to grow taller than we’ve seen in years. You’re not going to be able to see over any corn stalks this year!

Grapefruit Smoked Salt? That’s different! : what to do with jam beyond toast

Three fruit marmalade

Three fruit marmalade

Are you wondering what to do with strange jam flavors like grapefruit smoked salt, raspberry jalapeño, or orange vanilla bean? So did our family when suddenly our pantry was overrun by jars of jam. At first we started using jam more as sauce and syrup. My mother and I would mix jam into our bowls of plain greek yogurt instead of adding sugar, and slathered pancakes or waffles with three fruit marmalade or blueberry lime. My father would use jam like tomato ginger jalapeño or peach cardamom as marinades for chicken or pork chops.

By the time I headed out to upstate New York for college, my mom expressed her love by sending me bi-monthly care packages of jam. Pretty soon after my arrival, jam became my currency. I brought some jars with me when I joined friends for thanksgiving at their homes in Vermont, and gifted some to my boss for her birthday. I even got my bike fixed for three jars. But even after by jam barters there were plenty jars left in my dorm room, and I had to find ways to use it. I mixed it with brown mustard, and olive oil to make salad dressing, mixed any apple or jalapeño based jam in curry for extra flavor, and even whisked it up and mixed with lemonade or cocktails (only once I was 21 of course.)

Enough blabbing, here are some recipes:

Salad dressing with a kick:

6 tablespoons olive oil

1.5 tablespoon mustard (dijon, brown, or whole seed recommended)

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 tablespoons jam (I recommend grapefruit smoked salt, orange vanilla bean, or red currant)

salt and fresh ground black pepper

Mix all ingredients together and whisk until you reach your desired consistency. If it feels too thick, feel free to add more olive oil. If you’re looking for more protein, or just general substance in your salad I recommend adding a tablespoon of tahini or any other nut butter. 

Grapefruit Gin & Tonic:

2 ounce gin

3/4 ounce fresh lime juice

1 tablespoon grapefruit smoked salt jam

3 ounces tonic water

Mix gin, lime juice and jam into durable glass. Whisk well to make sure the jam mixes with the other liquids. Once mixed, strain into a 8 ounce glass, add tonic water. 

Other ideas: tomato sauce, pasta & jam, eggs & jam, cheese, mix into whipping cream, substitute for sugar.

Share your recipes with us at our Facebook page. Use the tag #fairhavenfarmrecipe!

It’s all happening! Opening day at Fairhaven Farm, tomorrow!

The day has come, or is soon to come. We’ll be officially opening our farm store TOMORROW, August 19th, for self serve. The cooler will be stocked with bags of Zestar!, State Fair, and 1837 apples, as well as Summercrisp pears. We also have our wide variety of jams available to purchase, and apple pies will be available by the weekend.

Apples!

Some questions you may have:

1.) What are these apple varieties like?

Zestar! has what we like to call a sweet-tart combination, known for possessing a very well balanced flavor. It’s good for eating, and especially good for pie. These apples will keep in the fridge for up to a month!

State Fair’s soft texture and short storage life makes it a great baking apple. Some people swear by it as a fantastic sauce maker. 

1837 is sometimes called the zestier Zestar! because it’s related to the well-known variety, but more tart. For all you Haralson or Granny Smith lovers out there, this is the apple for you in the early season.

2.) When will you be doing U-Pick raspberries?

There is no good answer for this question. In short, we’re not sure. Right now the fruit development is still picking up speed and we need the berries for our own purposes. We promise to announce here on the website, and on our answering machine, once the patch is ready for all of you. So don’t worry, you won’t miss it!

3.) When will the maze be open?

Hopefully by Labor Day weekend, though again, we’ll announce it on the website as soon we’ve determined the official date. 

4.) When will I be able to buy Kindercrisp apples?

We estimate we’ll begin picking Kindercrisp in a couple of weeks. Remember, all harvest dates are just estimations. We’ll do our best to predict the future, but it’s ultimately up to mother nature when fruit is ready for our eager stomachs.

5.) What are your hours?

The farm store is open everyday, 10am-6pm, for self-service. 

*On a side note, follow us on Instagram @fairhavenfarmmn to get our most current updates and pics from the farm!

Monticello Farmers Market

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We’re excited to announce that we will be adding another farmers market to our farm schedule. Come find us in Monticello next to the library, on Thursday from 3:30 to 7. Throughout the season we will be bringing a variety of items such as jam, popcorn, apricots, plums, pears, apples, black raspberries, raspberries, and flower bouquets.

THIS WEEK AT THE MARKET: Jam (blackcap, black currant, grapefruit smoked salt, orange vanilla bean, tomato ginger jalapeño, cranberry grapefruit, and peach cardamom), Black Raspberries, and Flower Bouquets.

Hope to see you there

Summer at the Farm

We’re back! Working hard at the summer growing season, preparing good things for the fall. Lately we’ve been spending a lot of time weeding the pumping patch, thinning apple trees, and picking fruit for jam making. Crops are looking happy and healthy.

We won’t be opening the barn until labor day weekend, but do not fret, there are other ways to enjoy Fairhaven Farm. Come visit us at the Annandale Farmers Market on Saturday mornings from 8-12 in the town hall parking lot. Or check out our monthly farm dinners prepared Barb Westman of Cottage Gourmets!

The 2014 Season’s End

The wood burning stove is hard at work, and we’re taking a lot of time these days to sit nearby and watch the fire flicker. The dogs are already restless in the house, staring longingly at the front door, or at our distracted faces hoping to get a good belly rub in before the day’s third nap. In fact, we’re all feeling a little cooped up, but excess energy can be bottled up and saved for the beginning of next season right? That what they mean by farm preserves? Maybe that’s a bit of wishful thinking, but something has to get a Minnesotan through the winter. Well, until the outdoors thaw we’ll continue reading fiction by the fire, pruning apple trees, spending too much time watching Tai Chi youtube videos, and making jam in the barn kitchen. Believe it or not Marsha is actually taking a vacation to Ecuador in February!

Thank you for another wonderful season, and we look forward to sharing the next one with you.

Pie tasting

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This weekend on Sunday Oct. 26, 1-4 Fairhaven Farm will feature it’s 2nd annual pie tasting.  We will again make pies from seven different apples or blends of apples and invite you to taste and vote for your favorite.  On of this years contestants will be made with Swiss Gourmet apples from New York state, sent to us  by our doughtier Marnie.

This weekend the Maze will be open and forecasted nice weather should enable another weekend of horse-drawn wagon rides in the afternoon.  Pumpkin sales have been very strong leaving only a small and probably short lived selection.  We still have a good selection of Zestar!, Honeycrisp, Haralson, Cortland, and Autumn Blush apples in the shop.  We plan to be open through Thnaksgiving.

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Indian Summer

Wow! what a nice fall. This wonderful autumn weather is perfect for going to the orchard.  We still have lots of Haralson apples for you to pick and Honeycrisp to buy in the shop.  The horses are waiting to take you on a wagon ride and there is still time to wander though the “Charlotte’s Web” maze.

Next Sunday Oct. 26 we will be having our 2nd annual pie tasting.  You can help answer the question as to the best apple or apples for a pie.  Any suggestions?

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honeycrisp

DSC01173It’s no secret that Honeycrisp is a fantastic apple.  What may surprise consumers is that this variety is almost as notorious, amongst apple growers, as a difficult finicky apple to grow.  One of its shortcomings is unusual susceptibility to tree  trunk rot.  As one of the first orchards to jump on the Honeycrisp bandwagon, Fairhaven Farm was also one of the first orchards to suffer extensive tree loss in its original plantings.  This has led to new Honeycrisp plantings using some of the newest tree training systems and concepts.  Shown here is the first crop of Honeycrisp on triple trunked trees trained to the Tall Spindle training system.  A walk through the orchard at Fairhaven Farm reveals an intriguing array of different compact new plantings as we seek to find the ideal way to grow apples on our particular site.

Cool but sunny weekend should be perfect for a trip the the orchard. This weekend you can pick your own Haralson apples and the perfect pumpkin.  The horses will be ready to take on a wagon ride both afternoons and the maze is always good for a wander.