A group of our friends from Minneapolis came for a visit this weekend taking in the beauty of the changing leaves of fall on their drive down. The children, Micah, and Ben were looking forward getting a farm tour from my daughter, Sophia. They are 6 and 3 years old and have always looked up to Sophia since she is a bit older at 10 years of age. They were especially excited to see the pigs and tractors. As a country girl it’s easy to forget the allure of the tractor. I made arrangements with my dad to make sure they would get a ride of some sort.
They arrived around lunch-time. Sophia, Steve and I made lunch using our favorite fresh seasonal ingredients. We oven roasted blue heirloom and fingerling potatoes and carrots and served them with rich homemade polenta and pork burger sliders garnished with fresh mixed greens It’s also apple season, we had picked buckets of apples off the tree and off the ground around the bottom of the trees and made a homemade apple pie for dessert.
After lunch we headed to a local pumpkin patch and Halloween maze. Foraging for pumpkins in the crisp fall air was wonderful. I was so happy we did this, because sometimes it’s easy to put these things off t’il tomorrow and then forget and time slips away from you and it’s too late. It’s great to have your friends come and force you to get out there and do those things you’ve been meaning to do.
Once we arrived at the farm, everyone scattered, looking at the pigs, taking pictures of the tractors and petting the farm cats. I brought a bucket of apple peelings and treats for the pigs. It’s so fun to feed them. They love sweet things just like us. The kids squealed with delight as our sow, Beautiful, grabbed a whole apple out of our hands and munched it in one bite.
My dad attached a trailer to the back of the tractor and suggested everyone hop on so he could give us a ride to the field. My friend, Carla, let go of the sides as we were riding to the field and said she was, “surfing”. The pigs were curious.
It was a long day of free-ranging kids and pigs. We ended the day with a picnic at the Dream Farm with my parents and their chickens. It was gorgeous as the fall evening sky cast its last rich golden glow of sunshine on us before disappearing below the horizon.
RECIPE for Willis Creamy Polenta:
2 cups of course ground corn meal
4 cups water
2 cups warmed half and half
3 tbsp. butter
1 cup parmesan/ asiago/ cheddar cheese
Pinch sea salt
On the stove in a medium size sauce pan stir together the water and cornmeal turn the burner to high until it reaches a boil stirring constantly. Once it thickens (15 minutes later) Add the warmed half and half butter, cheese and salt as you continue to stir for another 15 minutes turn burner to low and cook another 20 to 30 minutes until it is the desired thickness. (Polenta will thicken upon standing) top with grated parmesan or your favorite cheese and serve.