Thursday, June 17, 2010

It's time to enjoy the local bounty!

A news update from the Southern Vancouver Island Direct Farm Marketing Association… For farm links and other information, visit their website at or find them on facebook:

Strawberry Watch
FINALLY! The wait is over! All farms now have strawberries (visit our product page for a list of farms selling strawberries). Dan’s Farm is taking orders for flats of strawberries and filling those orders at this time. U-pick strawberries will start on June 23. Down the road at Oldfield Orchard and Bakery, u-pick happens on June 19 and 20, then Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday for the following week. Visit our U-Pick page for a complete listing of U-Pick farms.

Notes from the Peninsula
Michell Bros. Farm reports they have added fresh bunched carrots, green onions and green cabbage to its shelves, along with bunched beets, kale and lettuces. Over at Saanichton Christmas Tree Farm in Saanichton, Joan Fleming has potted dahlia plants for sale, along with beautiful colourful hanging baskets… And across the road at Suntrio Farm, the boys have variety of unique greens for sale, including pea shoots, sunflower sprout mix and wheat grass, as well as plan starters. The Muse Winery in North Saanich was a multiple medal winner at wine competitions this spring, taking 3 golds and a bronze at the Canadian Wine Competition and 4 silver medals at the NorthWest Wine Summit.

Notes from Metchosin
Fiona is holding a huge sale at Metchosin Farm: “Time to clear out the nursery to make way for summer (yes, it IS coming!). All tomato plants are on sale for $1.50 each if you buy ten or more. A great deal, while quantities last. Given the cool wet spring that we've had, the farm stand is still open until these plants are all sold. There is still a wonderful selection of salad mixes, New Zealand spinach, strawberry plants (some with red berries on them), squash, melons, rhubarb, tomatillos, peppers and more.”

Notes from the Cowichan...
Experience the summer solstice celebration of feminine energy at Damali Labyrinth (Damali Lavender Farm) on Monday, June 21 at 7:30 p.m. 'MANY STRONG, WISE, and BEAUTIFUL WOMEN' This is the fourth summer solstice celebration at Damali Labyrinth. Invite friends, daughters, sisters, mothers and bring a drum, tambourine or wooden spoons as we will be generating rhythms of the heart connections.

Merridale Ciderworks
Sunday, June 20: Barbeque buffet lunch for Father’s Day. Brunch begins at 11 and goes until 4 for only $20 a person. For menus and more information visit our website.
Saturday, July 3rd: Join us Saturday evening for a live dinner theatre on our orchard decks! The Bamberton Historical Society joined forces with the Seeds and Salt Theatre Company to create the historical theatre production, “The Road Less Travelled.” It portrays what makes Vancouver Islanders unique by uncovering 3 forgotten stories of Vancouver Island’s past and retelling them in a dramatic style that encourages the audience to interact with the characters and share in the lives, loves, intrigues and heroic deeds of the past. Drinks and appetizers begin at 5:30 followed by dinner at 6 pm. Dinner will be a cold buffet and served at long tables in the bistro. At 7:00, guests will be escorted onto the back deck to watch the plays and children are welcome. Bring a sweater in case of chill, but overhead heaters and blankets are provided for warmth.

Toe Tappin' at Providence Farm
Saturday, June 19 @ 5 p.m.
You'll have a great time helping Providence Farm raise funds at our annual Wild West Hoedown, with a buffet dinner, live and silent auctions and a real old fashioned country barn dance. Hoedown profits directly support the wonderful, innovative programs at the farm; programs that benefit the lives of so many in the Cowichan Valley. Tickets $75 from Providence Farm 250-746-4204. 

Grow Your Own
Carolyn Herriot’s new book, The Zero Mile Diet, is now sprouting up in local bookstores. Visit Carolyn’s web site for more information. And look for Carolyn and the Zero Mile Diet at the Saanich Fair this year!

Opportunities for youth

Haliburton Community Farm Summer Farm Camp for Kids
Here's another opportunity for young people to learn about growing and eating local foods. The Haliburton Community Organic Farm offers a Summer Farm Camp for Kids – visit the farm website to learn more.

Mr. Organic's Summer Camp for Kids
Your child will learn about: • Good bugs VS bad bugs • Companion plants • Seeding • Wonderful world of worms • Creating raised beds • Transplanting
All food-growing materials are provided, including seeds, potting soil, starter plants, compost, top soil, tools, and equipment. Camp is available to most ages - please ask.  One Full Week ONLY $115! Drop-ins Welcome $25/day

Monday to Friday, 9:30am to 2:30pm  • July 5–9 • July 12–16 • July 19–23 • July 26–30

For more information and/or to register, call Mr. Organic (Dave) at 250-655-9156 or 250-704-6602. Visit Mr. Organic's website (
And don't forget Mr. Organic's Gardening Workshop for Kids at The Roost Farm Centre on June 19, from 9 am to 12 noon.

Recipes from Taste of Life Catering ( featuring local farm products in season. Enjoy!
Herb Crusted Rack of Lamb
1 rack of island Lamb
One bunch of parsley
2 tbsp of chopped rosemary
½ cup Honey
¼ cup Dijon
1 cup of panko breading
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
Vegetable oil
In a food processor combine bread crumbs parsley rosemary, salt and pepper. Mix together on high for 2 minutes; mixture should be green in color. Take out and set aside in a glass bowl. In another bowl combine honey & Dijon, set aside. Once lamb is clean, cover bones with tin foil – this will Keep them from burning while cooking! Heat up a skillet with a little oil, sear your lamb on both sides for 3 minutes to seal in the juices, let cool for 10 minutes before coating.
Next paint on honey mixture all over the lamb meat. Dredge in breading mixture completely coat both sides of lamb. To finish pre heat oven to 400 degrees. Heat up a pan on medium to high heat. Sear both sides of lamb for 3 minutes, place in oven with show side up. Rare – cook for 15 minutes.
Medium rare to medium – 20 minutes. Let you lamb rest for 5 minutes, then cut in between bones. You should get 4 to 5 nice pieces. Serve with nice red wine Demi glace & sides of your choice. Enjoy!

Shopping for lamb?
A number of our members sell local lamb (visit our product page for a complete list and links). Call ahead for availability and to place orders.
Saanich Peninsula: Dragonfly Hill Vineyard & Winery, Ireland Farms, Olde Country Registered Sheep, Saanichton Christmas Tree Farm, The Roost Farm Centre
Metchosin: Seabluff Farm
Cowichan Valley: Gill-Power Hobby Farm, Providence Farm, Stonefield Farm.