Event Brings Regional Grains and Good Times to All!

People of all ages, interests, and backgrounds found their way to the Celebrate Grains festivities last September at Spiesschaert Farms.

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flour in bag
horses and wagon

In addition to highlighting the fresh grown and milled barley, rye and wheat, there were baked goods, distilled products, tastings, music, soil education, and plenty of children’s activities.

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Soil education and seed savings tips were well received.

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Kids found many interesting textures, and lots to see and do!

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Volunteers helped Charlene with the youth activities and community members gave out advice.

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Oh, lets look at the baked goods, and taste them, too.

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Booths highlighted local and regional foods and spirits.

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Volunteers and visitors enjoyed looking, tasting and visiting on the farm.

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The Lemon Love booth was popular. So was painting and wagon tours.

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Everyone got to meet the horses and drivers.

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Charlene and Richard received a photo highlighting the year of growing grains from Lyle, and music rocked the barn!

Plan to spend the day at the farm during the Celebrate Great Grains event in September 2019!

 

 

Growing Grains

Do you know where your grains come from? Come along on the journey of our 2018 wheat and rye crops. Meet the farmer, see the soil, plant the seed, tend the crop, harvest the grain . . . and that’s just the beginning of the regional grain economy we’re growing!

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Grain flowering in field.
Grain sprounting in field
Farmer Lyle checking the growing grains.

Fall 2017. Farmer Lyle Spiesschaert planted 26 acres of Red Fife Wheat, Dark Northern Rye and Purple Karma Barley on his farm, Spiesschaert Farms in Forest Grove, Oregon.

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Combine in field.
Charlene and Lyle on combine.

August 2018. Harvest time on the farm. Charlene gets in on the action as farmer Lyle starts the grain harvest with his combine.

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Here’s a close up look at the amazing harvest machinery.

Sorting the grain with the Chipper.
Bagging the grains.
Grain from the Chipper.
Sewing the grain sacks up.

Flashback to our first harvest in Fall 2017. In our first year three acres of grains were grown. Here we share our cleaning, sorting and bagging during that first small harvest!  The Clipper Seed Cleaner, approximately 100 years old, is put into use by it owner Malvin Van Domelen.  Then the grains were sorted and bagged.  Much has changed with the increase to 26 acres! We are in an exciting transition with this part of the process and have new production methods this year to bring the larger amount of grains to market.

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Small package of grains.
Grain in bag.

Fall and Winter 2018. Packaged grains ready for the bakers, brewers, and home cooks of our region!

Outlook for 2019: We’ve planted the seeds for the grain harvest in 2019. With the increase in production and milling capacity, we’ll be ready for an expanded base of regional grain customers.

For information about the grains and the grain project, or to purchase grains, contact Charlene at charlene@foodwaysatnanacardoon.org or call her at 206-794-1900.

 

Celebrate Great (local) Grains

Saturday, September 22, Free & Family Friendly!

Explore the advantages of reintroducing wholesome grains raised and processed in our area for our community. Find out how local grains enhance our local economy. Discover heritage grains that bring great taste to baking, brewing and distilling.

Saturday, September 22, 10 am to 3 pm
Spiesschaert Farms, 3150 NW Thatcher Rd, Forest Grove, Oregon
Free & Family Friendly

Bread, bakery & beverage tasting

Whole grain cooking & baking demos

Horse drawn wagon rides through farm & riparian area

Fresh food concessions

Live music

Covered seating & plenty of parking

Local flour and grains will be for sale!

 

Great Grains Fundraising Dinner

Enjoy a locally sourced dinner & help grow the local grain economy

Grain, the missing ingredient in many locally sourced meals, just became a little more local and accessible. Now in its second year, the Great Grains Initiative grew to 26 acres of sustainably grown grains, up from just three acres of production in its humble beginning a little over one year ago.

Now we need your help to continue! Plan to attend the Great Grains fundraising dinner on Sunday, August 26. All proceeds from the event go toward milling, community outreach, marketing, and education.

For additional details and to RSVP/purchase your tickets, click here.

Explore & Discover: 2017 Classes

From carving and scything, to basket weaving, preserving and much more, the Nana Cardoon 2017 class schedule offers a great way to slow down and learn new skills, crafts, preserving, and food preparation. Plus spent the day at the farm with others interested in farm culture and traditions, too.
Join instructors who have honed their craft over a lifetime and use their talent and experience each day to create foods, tools, gardens and other useful products. Bring your curiosity. Get ready to explore. Sign up for a class and take home new skills and friendships from a day on the farm.
Take a look at the class list, and contact Charlene, charlene@nanacardoon.com or 503-357-4992, with questions or to sign up for a session.

The Essential Larder & Pantry

“Over here is one of our larders,” Charlene mentions as she leads the small group of university students to the north facing porch of the farm house she and Richard call home. The students quickly realize its not your average front porch. They gaze over the cornucopia of milk carton cases bursting with multicolored apples, gallon glass jars jam-packed with

Jar of pickles

Jars of pickles fill the larder shelves.

olives, earthenware pots spilling over with potatoes and onions, and light gray formation crocks bubbling with sauerkraut, kosher dills, and assorted citrus.

“These foods are alive,” Charlene continues. “The larder is where we keep foods that need to be in a naturally cool and shaded environment.” The care and respect she has for good food comes through as she talks with the students about “live” food, the fermentation process, and the importance of a larder in a well stocked kitchen. Each student takes an olive to taste.

Corn kernels in hand

Corn kernels will be stored in the pantry.

Charlene moves on to the subject of the pantry. “Our pantry designated areas are stores of canned tomato sauces, preserves, dried pasta, beans and grains, jars of anchovies, dried fruits and vegetables. These are all things that are kept in a ‘still’ room, which is also an old term referring to a kitchen or workroom where foods are preserved or made ‘still’.”

Nana Cardoon Urban Farm hosts many students of all ages and Charlene doesn’t miss a chance to help them learn the many components to a good table. “Pantry comes from the French ‘pain’. Larder comes from the French ‘lard’. These terms come from the way homes used to be organized. I like to keep things separated in the same way, honoring the traditional ways of storing and handling nutrition, and depending on non-electric storage methods.”

Squash on the vine

This farm grown squash is now in one of the larders.

The students continue on their farm tour as they make their way past mounds of herbs, twisting grape vines, and fruit hanging heavy on the persimmon tree. If they just happen to come back in the near future they would find that most of what they see now in one of the pantries or larders they just learned about. Because as she mentioned Charlene processes and stores almost all foods utilizing traditional and natural storage in various the larders and pantries around their home.

Harvesting produce, beans and grains from the farm; procuring and curing meats from neighboring farms; creating cheeses, kefir, and fermented breads – each batch, jar, basket, or crate makes it way into the appropriate pantry or larder. There it becomes part of the ever-changing procession of good foods headed toward a nutritious convivial meal around the farmhouse table.

Nana Cardoon larder areas:

  • Charcuterie
  • Cheese
  • Vinegars
  • Fruits and Vegetables
  • Lacto Fermentation Crocks
Canned tuna in glass jars

Canned Oregon albacore stocks the pantry.

Nana Cardoon pantry areas:

  • Kitchen area pantry – ‘still’ items used on a daily basis
  • Shed pantry – canned goods for the year

And the wine is in our “cellar”!

Sala Painting, Creating & Eating

A day of creativity awaits 12 students as artist and teacher Marcella Kriebel guides the class through painting vegetables and making salsa. Turning farm-raised corn into tortillas is Charlene’s focus, and with Richard at the grill brunch is in good hands!

Marcella provides guidance for beginners and advanced painters alike — everyone is creative!

Charlene shares a peek at the farm-grown corn to be made into tortillas. The molino does the trick and soon tortillas are ready for the grill.

Marcella and class are busy making salsa – with fresh picked peppers and other ingredients from the farm.

Brunch tastes fantastic, right down to the last slurp – south of the border style!

This is too much fun!

Missed this event? Don’t wait to sign up for Margarita Shake Up: An Evening of Painting & Dining on the Farm! — October 2nd. Marcella will be back with another creative class — check it out and save your seat at the table.