Tuscan Kale Chips

Source: epicurious.com


  • 12 large Tuscan kale leaves, rinsed, dried, cut lengthwise in half, center ribs and stems removed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil.


Preheat oven to 250°F. Toss kale with oil in large bowl. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Arrange leaves in single layer on 2 large baking sheets. Bake until crisp, about 30 minutes for flat leaves and up to 33 minutes for wrinkled leaves. Transfer leaves to rack to cool.

Tuscan Kale Caesar Salad

From epicurious.com


  • 1/4 c lemon juice
  • 8 anchovy fillets in oil, drained
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 t Dijon mustard
  • 3/4 c olive oil
  • ½ c grated Parmesan
  • Kosher salt & black pepper
  • 1 hard-boiled egg
  • 1 bunch Tuscan kale, center stalks removed, thinly sliced crosswise (about 8 c)

Preparation: Purée first 4 ingredients in blender until smooth. Slowly add oil, to make creamy dressing. Transfer to bowl, stir in ¼ c Parmesan, salt, pepper. Cover and chill. Separate egg white from yolk. Place egg white in a coarse-mesh strainer set over a bowl. Press egg white through with the back of a spoon. Repeat with egg yolk, using a clean strainer and bowl. Toss kale and dressing in a large bowl to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Top with remaining ¼ c Parmesan and eggs.

Elder Flower Fritters

Nella Mae’s Farm Seasonal Recipe


1 c flour

1 t baking power

½ teaspoon salt

2 beaten eggs

1 c milk

2 tblspoon melted butter

4 c elderberry flowers

oil for frying

Blend flour, baking powder & salt. In separate bowl, blend eggs, milk, butter. Dip elder flower bunches in egg mixture then dip in flour mixture. Heat ¼ inch oil in skillet until it makes bubbles when you put a spoon in it. Fry elder flowers in hot oil until golden. Drain on paper towels. Serve with honey or maple syrup. Note: elderberry flowers and berry juice are edible. Berries with seeds inside can be bad for you.


Kale Salad for Skeptics

By: Nella Mae Parks


  • ½ lb of kale leaves (for 2-4 servings)
  • Coarse sea salt or other salt
  •  ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ c apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • Pepper

Don’t chop kale: rip off the big stems and then rip handfuls of leaves into a bowl. Crunch it with your hands with some sprinkles of salt. Put dressing ingredients in a jar with lid, shake. Dress salad 5 minutes before serving. Acid in dressing facilitates wilting, which makes kale more palatable. Add strawberries, apples, nuts, seeds, cheese, etc. to make it more interesting. Note: dressing keeps well but salad does not. Recipe makes 2-4 servings.

Breakfast potatoes & sausage with sage butter

From: www.foodandwine.com


  • 1 pound new potatoes
  • ½ stick unsalted butter
  • ¼ c sage leaves
  • ½ lb local, grass-fed breakfast sausage
  • 2 green onions
  • Salt and pepper.

Cook potatoes until tender, about 20 mins. Drain and halve potatoes. Melt the butter in skillet. Add sage and cook med. heat 2 mins. Pour sage butter into a small bowl. Add the sausages to the skillet and cook, 8 to 10 minutes; transfer to a platter. Wipe out the skillet with a paper towel. Add reserved sage butter to the skillet. Cook green onions 2 mins. Add potatoes, salt, pepper. Top the sausages with the potatoes, garnish with scallions and serve.

Linguine with Thyme, Garlic, Lemon, and Mushrooms

Source: Nigella Lawson via foodnetwork.com


  • 8 oz/4 c finely sliced mushrooms
  • 1/3 c olive oil
  • 1 tbl spoon salt
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 t spoon thyme leaves
  • 1 lb linguine
  • ½ c parsley
  • 2-3 tblspoons freshly grated Parmesan
  • Black pepper

Slice the mushrooms finely; put into a large bowl with the oil, salt, minced garlic, lemon juice and zest, thyme leaves. Cook pasta according to packet instructions and drain loosely, retaining some water. Quickly put the pasta into the bowl with the mushroom mixture. Toss everything together well, and then add the parsley, cheese and pepper before tossing again. Eat with joy in your heart.


Roasted asparagus with lemon-oregano aioli sauce

Source: epicurious.com


  • 2 lbs asparagus, tough ends trimmed
  • 1 lemon, halved, 1 tspoon fresh lemon juice, ½ tspoon grated lemon peel
  • 4 tblspoons olive oil
  • 1 c mayonnaise
  • 2 tspoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 garlic clove minced

Aioli sauce: Whisk mayonnaise, oil, oregano, garlic, lemon juice, and lemon peel in small bowl to blend. Season aioli sauce to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and chill.

Asparagus: Preheat oven to 425°F. Place asparagus spears on cookie sheet covered in foil. Toss asparagus with oil, salt, pepper. Roast until tender, about 8 mins Arrange asparagus on platter. Place bowl of aioli in center for dipping and serve.

Many Thanks! 2015

IMG_2167 (1)This Thanksgiving I am so grateful for land, soil, sun, aquifer, plants and animals; for our customers, for local restaurants, and for the La Grande Farmers’ Market; for our new barn, irrigation system, hoop house, farmstand, and deer fence; and especially for my parents, family, friends, neighbors, fellow farmers, and my community who made all possible.

This year folks have often recognized the success of the farm and business and congratulated me on my hard work. I sure appreciate folks’ compliments, but want to make it very clear this farm is a community project, not a solo one. It would be false advertising to say otherwise.

One year ago this farm was a marginal pasture. Since then we have put in a road to the farm, an excellent well, brought in 10 loads of soil and manure IMG_2136for terraced beds, put up a hoop house, installed a drip irrigation system, built a deer fence, constructed a barn and farm kitchen, installed a septic system, built a farmstand, developed a farmers’ market stand, and moved our tiny house to the farm. If you think this could be done by a single person, you’re insane!

But in our country we highly value entrepreneurial spirit, fierce independence, and the idea that anyone can boot strap their way up–alone. Farming attracted me because it seemed to fit this narrative. I have always liked to work independently and for myself; to see my own ideas made real; to do things my way. Even as a tiny kid my favorite saying was, “I do it myself!” and I would. But that meant I was often wearing red cowgirl boots on the wrong feet.

10628893_743088832052_2173897599529740239_oEvery day of this growing season the independent boot strapping narrative was handily defeated by reality. Reality had only to roll its eyes, gesture at the work waiting in the fields that day and the boot straps would slink away to be chewed on by the dog. Many times a day I was calling on family, friends, friends of friends, neighbors, fellow growers, customers, and strangers (off and online) for advice, information, ideas, time, hands, strong backs. My mom was up working long days every day with me, planting, harvesting, weeding, pest controlling, back breaking. My dad and good friends and neighbors Sandy 11090942_10204226525049302_8541929125837753433_oand Dick were basically on-call to help with everything from carpentry to weeding to irrigation blow outs to pest identification. My family, Michael and Chloe, spent every weekend at the farmers’ market with me. A few friends got random “help me I’m desperate for a tomato picker” calls and responded. Customers, friends, and strangers came out of the woodwork to help. Furthermore, I received a grant to construct the hoophouse and drip irrigation system from the Natural Resource Conservation Service and a low-interest loan from the Farm Services Agency to build the barn and septic system. In short, every structure, every plant, every idea on this farm and every dollar earned has the fingerprints of dozens of people in my family and community on it.red boots 2

This farm and this year have taught me to freely ask for help and advice, to ask questions and be open to suggestions in a way I never have been. I still have a long way to go. My independent nature made accepting help and asking for it a challenge. But my pride is easily overcome by the grounding, comfortable and joyful feeling of complete interconnectedness. It is shrunk by the deep feeling of safety and gratitude I have knowing I have access to well of friends, wisdom, help, and love. I’ve come to find out that being prideful and fiercely independent isn’t as great as getting things accomplished together and wearing your red boots on the right feet.

How to Roast and Freeze Tomatoes and Chiles

By: Nella Mae Parks


All tomatoes and peppers are easily roasted and frozen. In the winter you can thaw them out to make fresh-tasting salsa, tomato sauce, chili, and soup.


Tomatoes: Wash, cut out core at the top for large tomatoes. Cherry tomatoes can be roasted whole. Place whole tomato with core hole down in casserole dish. Drizzle with olive oil. Bake at 400 deg 30 mins or until tomatoes begin to break down in shape. Cool. Put, tomatoes w/ juice in freezer bags, wipe bag closure clean, freeze.


Chilies: Wash, cut in half and remove seeds and white veins if you don’t want them too hot. Place in casserole greased with olive oil. Bake 400 for 20+ min or until soft. Cool and put in freezer bags. Wipe bag closure clean, freeze.


Tip: Stack your bags flat in the freezer when you put them in to freezer. You can get more in if they are stackable.