About Our Farm...

Village Acres Farm

Village Acres Farm has a mission of connecting people to their food, the earth and each other. We are committed to growing food and building relationships that are sustaining, restorative, and transformative for our customers, employees, and selves.

Celebrating over 30 years of farming, 20 years of Organic certification and 15 years of serving the community through a CSA model, Village Acres operates as a diversified system, integrating vegetables, berries and pastured livestock.

Village Acres offers on-farm pick-up of produce, eggs, and chicken for CSA members, as well as distribution to State College, Lewistown, Selinsgrove, and Harrisburg. We also serve breakfast the first Saturday of every month (April-November) and live music several evenings a year in our FoodShed.

Located just off Route 322 near Mifflintown - about 45 minutes from State College and Harrisburg - the 30 acre farm is centered in the village of Cuba Mills, nestled along the banks of the Lost Creek close to its confluence with the Juniata River.

 Read about our farm in Grid Magazine's Farmbook...

Blog/Farm Newsletters

Summer/Fall Week #29 - Final Week of the 2014 Season

Posted by Hannah :: Tuesday, December 16 :: 12:37pm

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK: Frozen Red Raspberries, Sweet Potatoes, Potatoes, Carrots, Celeriac, Onions, Garlic, Kale, and Spinach. 


FARM NOTES:

Well, this is it! Last distribution of the summer/fall season. While last summer held more sun and therefore more tomatoes, this season was nothing to baulk at. Overall, we had a very good season. Yes, it was a colder and darker fall than we’d hoped for, but we really can’t complain.

While we know our members aren’t looking solely for the cheapest food option and we certainly want to continue to be financially viable as a farm (so we can continue to be here), we thought you’d be interested to know that our share members this year paid less than 75% of market value for retail Organic produce. We hope this and the quality of your harvest share items reinforces for you the value of the CSA model and direct farm-to-consumer trade!

Please complete our end of season survey at www.villageacresfarm.com/survey-summer-fall-2014 or simply click on the “Our CSA” tab on our website and look for the survey link.

As you know, we are full for the winter/spring season. Let us know if you’d like to be placed on a waitlist.


Here’s to another great season!
Hannah 


Did you know we have hundreds of recipes on our website and they can all be searched by ingredient? Simply visit www.VillageAcresFarm.com/recipe and search away. We are in the process of adding this year’s newsletter recipes but we’ve got tons to choose from. If you come across a recipe you particularly like, please send it and we’ll add it.

Recipe:  

 

Apple Celeriac Potato Soup

Ingredients
1 lg celeriac peeled and chopped.
2-3 med potatoes washed and chopped, leave skins on.
1 lg carrots chopped.
1 lg apple peeled and chopped.
1 med onion peeled and diced
1 qt unsalted vegetable or poultry stock
2 T olive oil
1/2 t dried thyme
2 T maple syrup
2 T salt use 2 T per gallon, adjust if desired.
Pepper to taste - Make it hot pepper if you like that.
2-3 lg collard or kale greens. Stack the leaves and then roll them tightly. Slice the 'roll' into very thin ribbons. (Greens are optional. They add great color, and are delicious.)

Instructions
Sauté onions and thyme in oil over medium heat for a few minutes until the onions are browned and translucent. Add the celeriac, carrot, and potatoes. Sauté for 5 minutes, stirring often to keep it from burning, until all is infused with the thyme oil. Add stock, apples, salt, and pepper. Add more stock (or water) if needed to cover all of the vegetables. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 15-20 minutes until potatoes are cooked.


Add maple syrup. Blend with an immersion blender, or blend in batches in a blender and return to soup pot. Stir in greens ribbons. Let stand on very low heat for 15 minutes to soften the greens. Serve hot, with garnishes of your choice on each bowl.


We’d like to end the season with some words from our favorite poet farmer: Wendell Berry.

To enrich the earth I have sowed clover and grass
to grow and die. I have plowed in the seeds
of winter grains and various legumes,
their growth to be plowed in to enrich the earth.
I have stirred into the ground the offal
and the decay of the growth of past seasons
and so mended the earth and made its yield increase.
All this serves the dark. Against the shadow
of veiled possibility my workdays stand
in a most asking light. I am slowly falling
into the fund of things. And yet to serve the earth,
not knowing what I serve, gives a wideness
and a delight to the air, and my days
do not wholly pass. It is the mind's service,
for when the will fails so do the hands
and one lives at the expense of life.
After death, willing or not, the body serves,
entering the earth. And so what was heaviest
and most mute is at last raised up into song.

 

Summer/Fall Week #28

Posted by Hannah :: Tuesday, December 9 :: 1:24pm

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK: 

Green Cabbage, Butternut Squash, Potatoes, Kale, Mesclun Mix, Onions, Hakurei Turnips, Rutabaga, and Watermelon Radish.


FARM NOTES:

After today, there is only one fall season CSA delivery remaining!

This week, we wish to recognize with gratitude all our CSA members and your vital role in sustaining Village Acres Farm.  Thank you, everyone!   Some of you have supported us from the very beginning, a total of 17 years! We hope and plan to keep rewarding you with good healthy food in the future.  Ours is a mutual relationship. You afford us the commitment and finances every spring to bring you a share of the harvest all season long. With your early commitment, we can plan to ensure our harvest meets your needs, neither over or under planting. In return, we prioritize you in all we have throughout the year. While we also sell wholesale through our growers cooperative and, in limited amounts, through markets, you are our first priority. We do ask you to stretch a bit sometimes, like with our experimenting with the greens-only share this winter (we usually do something like this to be responsive to a family need, which is the case this time). And we accept the challenge to prove ourselves worthy of your trust in us that the change will still meet your needs. It will soon be time for our fall survey and we look forward to your feedback.

Please note that we are full for the winter share. If you want to participate and keep forgetting to let us know, send us a message and we’ll, at a minimum, put you on a waitlist. It’s possible we can offer 1 or 2 more once we evaluate exactly what we project to have for a harvest.

Thanks again for being in relationship with us! Hannah


Did you know we have hundreds of recipes on our website and they can all be searched by ingredient? Simply visit www.VillageAcresFarm.com/recipe and search away. We are in the process of adding this year’s newsletter recipes but we’ve got tons to choose from. If you come across a recipe you particularly like, please send it and we’ll add it.

Recipes:  

Cabbage Potato Soup

Cook 4 diced potatoes and 4 diced carrots in enough water to cover. Meanwhile in another pot, shred one small cabbage and 1 med onion and cook in enough water to cover with ¾ tsp salt and ½ tsp pepper until just tender. When potatoes/carrots are tender, drain water into pot with cabbage and mash mixture together with 1 c. sour or other cream and 2 tsp minced herbs. Add sour cream mixture to cabbage broth very slowly to avoid curdling, stirring continually. Serve immediately.

Pumpkin or Winter Squash Soup

Cut pumpkin/squash open and remove seeds. Cut pumpkin/squash into one-inch cubes. Slice one onion, and sauté for a few minutes, then add the pumpkin/squash. Saute for about five minutes, stirring, and then add a cup of water, put on a lid and let it simmer for forty to fifty minutes, until the pumpkin is tender. At this point some of the pumpkin can be mashed to thicken the broth. Add some more water to the onion-pumpkin mixture to make it soupy. Heat and season with salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. The soup may be garnished with croutons.


 

Summer/Fall Week #27

Posted by Hannah :: Wednesday, December 3 :: 10:52am

IN THE SHARE THIS WEEK: 

Napa Cabbage, Daikon Radish, Carrots, Onions, Red Beets, Finger Sweets (small sweet potatoes), Salad Mix.


FARM NOTES:

We hope everyone had a healthy and happy Thanksgiving! Ours was full of visits with family (some of whom hadn’t been all together for Thanksgiving in a very long time) and friends, saying goodbye to some of Chandler’s wool sheep who were here for a few weeks before traveling on to Hannah’s brother’s farm in Kentucky, scrambling to get all the work done that Debra’s parents do on a daily basis (since they were visiting family in South Carolina), and pulling off our biggest harvesting, processing, packing and distributing week of the year!

Today feels like the beginning of the end of our Fall season, only two distributions left, as we’ve gotten over the hump of last week and have our minds and bodies freed up a bit to contemplate a bit of a winter rest. Debra can resume spending more time in the greenhouses (something she relishes), preparing for your winter greens; Hannah will soon be done with the busiest time of the year for her off-farm work and can be more intentional about family projects (something she relishes); and, we can all start focusing on tasks we never seem to have enough time to get to at other times in the year.

Oh, we can also just relax and visit, read and write letters, cook and eat, plan and plan and plan…

We can never say it enough, thanks for being on this journey with us!


Did you know we have hundreds of recipes on our website and they can all be searched by ingredient? Simply visit www.VillageAcresFarm.com/recipe and search away. We are in the process of adding this year’s newsletter recipes but we’ve got tons to choose from. If you come across a recipe you particularly like, please send it and we’ll add it.

Recipe:  Cabbage Kimchi

Sandor Katz, author of Wild Fermentation, Cabbage Kimchi
Makes 1 quart

Sea salt
1 pound napa cabbage
1 daikon radish or a few red radishes
1­2 carrots
1­2 onions, leeks, a few scallions, or shallots
3­4 cloves of garlic
3­4 hot red chilies, depending on how hot you like your food, or any form of hot pepper, fresh, dried, or in a sauce
3 T fresh grated gingerroot

Mix a brine of 4 cups water and 4 tablespoons of salt. The brine should taste good and salty.
Coarsely chop the cabbage, slice the radish and carrots, and let the vegetables soak in the brine, covered by a plate or other weight to keep the vegetables submerged until soft. This can take a few hours or overnight is even better.

Prepare the spices: grate the ginger, chop the garlic and onion, remove seeds from the chilies and chop or crush, or throw them in whole. Kimchi can absorb a lot of spice. Mix spices into a paste. You can add fish sauce to the spice paste; just make sure it has no chemical preservatives which function to inhibit microorganisms.

Drain brine of vegetables after soaking. Reserve the brine. Taste the vegetables for saltiness. You want them salty but not unpleasantly so. If they are too salty, rinse them. If you cannot taste the salt, sprinkle a couple teaspoons and mix.

Mix the vegetables with the ginger­chili­onion­garlic paste. Mix everything together and stuff it into a clean quart size jar. Pack it lightly, pressing down until brine rises. If necessary, add a little of the reserved, vegetable­soaking brine to the submerged vegetables. Weigh them down with a small jar, or a zip­lock bag filled with some brine. If you remember, you can just push them down with your fingers.

Cover the jar. Ferment in your kitchen or other warm place. Taste it every day. After about a week, when it tastes ripe, move it to the refrigerator or cool storage space like a root cellar.


 

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