Posts Tagged With: Food

Easy harvest meal: chicken jalapeno popper pasta

I don’t know about you, but I am always on the lookout for easy, nutritious recipes, especially at harvest and planting time. Just the other night, I hit the jackpot. Chicken jalapeño popper pasta. Even my farmer loved it. Bonus for all you farm wives out there, I made this a week ahead and froze it until we needed it, AND I was able to use up some of my garden-fresh jalapeños. So easy and so delicious!

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Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 pound cellentani pasta, cooked
  • 16 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup bacon, crumbled
  • 2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/4 cup diced jalapenos
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup half and half
  • 2.5 cups cooked and chopped chicken

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Spray 9X13 baking pan with cooking spray
  • In a large mixing bowl add cream cheese, bacon, 1 cup cheddar cheese and jalapeños. Mix well.
  • Stir in cream and half and half.
  • Add pasta and mix well.
  • Stir in chicken.
  • Pour mixture into baking dish.
  • Spread bread crumbs over pasta (optional).
  • Bake at 350 degrees F for 40 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle remaining cheese over the top and return to the oven for 5 more minutes.
  • Serve and enjoy!

Hope you all are having safe harvest season!

 

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Harvest is underway

This picture.

harvest-2016

This picture illuminates everything I love about fall. My farmer. My dog. Fresh picked butternut squash. Corn ready to be picked. Crisp weather. I could go on, but I won’t bore you with every single little detail we love about fall 😉

In a perfect world, this picture is what every farm family looks like the night before harvest. One last family dinner followed by some time of just being together before all the craziness starts. This picture illuminates the excitement of another bountiful crop. I mean even Molly (our dog) is smiling!

And so it begins. Harvest 2016.

From our farm family to yours, we wish you a very safe and bountiful harvest season!

 

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Farm tours to feature variety of AER products

Ohio Farm Tour memo2Here’s a chance to see a few farms with strong fertility programs using some of our products including, Myco Seed Treat®, SP-1™, starters, foliar applications, in-furrow, and side-dress. At AgriEnergy Resources, we believe there’s still another opportunity to turn a good crop into a great crop. Join us from 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Wednesday, July 27 on several farm tours in Ohio, hosted by John Daniel Schlabach of JDS Seeds. We will visit 6 farms and learn what others have done to manage their crops. One of our agronomists, Gary Campbell, will be there all day discussing how late-season foliars can complement a strong early season program. He will be joining speakers John Daniel Schlabach, organic consultant Reggie Destree, and participating farmers. It should be a great day to get your questions answered while learning from some of the best. The following farms are participating:

Stoller Organic Farm – 8:30 a.m. at 10451 Eby Road, Sterling, Ohio. Scott and his family are Organic Valley members and grow organic corn, soybeans, wheat, oats, hay, and pasture. Scott uses a variety of tools for weed control and was one of the first farmers in the area to use AgriEnergy products. He also built a new milking parlor and expanded his herd.

Andy Mast Farm – 10:15 a.m. at 3444 East Messner Road, Wooster, Ohio. Andy and his sisters grow organic produce for Greenfield Farms. They have focus on growing squash, zucchini, and kale. Andy will discuss what he has done to make his farm more productive. Join us in the discussion.

Greenfield Farms Cooperative – 11:00 a.m. at 6464 Fredricksburg Road, Wooster, Ohio. Tour Greenfield Farms’ dry fertilizer mixing plant and their warehouse distribution center. See local produce being brought in and prepared for shipment to area retailers.

Scott Stoler

Guests will get the opportunity to visit farms such as this one operated by Scott Stoller, which is also the first stop of the morning. 

Jake’s Restaurant – 12:00 p.m. at 6655 East Lincoln Way, Wooster, Ohio. Join us for lunch at Jake’s.

Ervin Miller, Jr. Farm – 1:15 p.m. at 4347 Welty Road, Apple Creek, Ohio. Ervin and his family grow organic corn, soybeans, hay, and pasture. He has been using AgriEnergy products for several years and his crops look good. He uses a variety of tools for weed control and bought a new Multivator (in the row rototiller).

Woodlynn Acres Farm – 2:30 p.m. at 647 South Kurzen Road, Dalton, Ohio. Fred and Scott Myers farm about 3,000 acres with about 1,200 acres in hay production. This year they made the decision to transition about 1,000 acres to organic production with 60 acres of organic corn and 200 acres of organic hay this year. They have used AgriEnergy corn starter and applied foliar fertilizer to their hay, corn, and small grains. Their organic corn looks very good and their organic hay quality was excellent. Join the discussion of their farming practices and see the modern equipment and technology they use.

Craig Stoller Farm – 4:00 p.m. at 14665 Mt Eaton Road, Rittman, Ohio. Criag Stoller and his family are Organic Valley members and milk Holsteins. He is a young farmer that has been using AgriEnergy products for several years. Join us as we visit his farm and discuss his farming practices.

There is no need to RSVP for any of the farm tours; just show up and attend as many as you prefer. Feel free to stay the whole day or enjoy only a handful of tours.

For more information call John Daniel Schlabach at 330-465-1794.

 

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Family Farm Field Day 7/15-16

Have any plans next weekend? Consider visiting us at the Family Farm Field Day at Wholesome Valley Farm in Wilmot, Ohio.

We’ll have a booth set up along with Fowler Seed Marketing and JDS Seeds among many other sponsors. There’s a little something for everyone at this year’s event. The purpose of this field day is to provide an educational format for families who live and breath grass-based agriculture.

There will be specific tracks for:

  • Farmstead
  • Homemakers
  • Natural Resources
  • Children
  • Produce
  • Beekeeping
  • Poultry

The Family Farm Field Day will kick off Friday, July 15 from 4pm-8:30pm and continue through 4pm Saturday at the Wholesome Valley Farm located at 927 US Route 62, Wilmot, OH 44689.

There is no admission for this event.

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Field meals – farmer approved

Have I mentioned how awesome Pinterest is? Seriously, when I have absolutely no idea what to make for dinner, Pinterest for the win!

Why am I sharing this? Because out of the two recipes I’ve made so far, my farmer’s requested the one and said he’d tolerate the other (even though I promised I wouldn’t tell anyone). Regardless, I thought they both turned out great and thought if you’re anything like me, you need all the recipe ideas you can get!

Up first, Creamy Spinach Tomato Tortellini. Takes 15 minutes to cook and is SO good. Disclaimer, my farmer doesn’t care for tomatoes or anything that comes close to resembling alfredo sauce, but he LOVED this. And actually requested it a second time. Get the recipe here. Side note, I used Rotel tomatoes for an extra kick, but if you don’t like spice, stick with the regular diced tomatoes.

creamy-spinach-tortellini-4edit+srgb.

Photo credit: cookingclassy.com

Up next, for a healthier, low-carb, meal Sausage, Pepper, and Onion Stuffed Zucchini Boats. I added chopped tomato and celery to the veggie mix and it was delightful. However I only put peppers, sausage and cheese in the farmers and he tolerated it. He said he wouldn’t necessarily order this dish in a restaurant, but I LOVED it. But then again, I’m a sucker for veggies and anything zucchini-related. I will note, these boats were the perfect size to pick up and eat with your hands (like a hot dog) making it easy to eat on the go. Get the recipe here.

sausage-pepper-and-onion-zucchini-boats-collage

Photo credit: thetwobiteclub.com

Next, we’re going to try these homemade hot Ham and Cheese Pockets because who doesn’t like a hot ham and cheese in the tractor?!

What’s your go-to field meal?

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Meyer Produce: Mark Meyer Family

Long before the “Farm to Fork” campaign was even a thing, there was one Illinois farmer way ahead of the game. What started out as a seedless watermelon venture soon morphed into a third-generation family business.

Today that same man, Bill Meyer, now 83, is working alongside his son, Mark Meyer and his family, to bring central Illinois some of the best locally grown produce this side of the Mississippi.

Mark Meyer has graciously accepted an invitation to sit down with us and talk about his operation, Meyer Produce. So, without further ado, meet Mark Meyer:

MarkMeyer_MeyerProduce

Some of the Meyer’s homegrown produce. Be sure to “Like” them on Facebook.

AER: Please tell us about Meyer Produce.
MM: Meyer Produce is located in Mason County, Illinois, 3 miles west of Manito. My wife, Shelly, along with our daughters Hannah, Paige, and Brooke, help on the farm. We raise about 250 acres of popcorn for Weaver Popcorn Co. Our biggest crops include 55 acres of fresh market sweet corn, 20 acres of watermelon, 20 acres of muskmelon, and 1-3 acres of peppers, in addition to various other vegetables on smaller acres. We also raise around 20 acres of pumpkins and squash in the fall and sell straw in the winter and spring. We also have 6 high tunnels that we raise tomatoes in to sell at roadside stands and farmers markets and have 90 acres of certified organic ground that we grow several different crops including, canning pumpkins, snap beans, soybeans, popcorn, seed corn, and field corn.

AER: Sounds like you have quite the operation. Was this something you’ve always wanted to do?
MM: I started raising and selling vegetables when I was in FFA. I then went on to get a degree in ag business/agriculture from Illinois State University. When I graduated, I worked for Thorp Seed Co. in Clinton, Illinois for 9 months. Then I went to work for a distillery for ten years and farmed on the side.

AER: You must keep  very busy. How do you divide up what gets done each day?
MM: My wife helps keep track of taking orders in the summer, while my oldest and youngest daughters help sort corn and pick tomatoes. My middle daughter, Paige, works a produce stand. My dad, Bill, who originally raised seedless watermelon in the ’70’s still helps every day at the young age of 83. He takes care of the tomatoes in the high tunnels.

AER: Do you still have a produce stand in your front yard? Where else can consumers purchase your vegetables?
MM: We sell our produce locally at our flower shop in Manito and at several produce stands and farmers markets. When we’re really producing a lot, we also sell to a local federal prison. We deliver to grocery stores and 15-20 locals within an hour distance. This helps keep our volume up and utilize our acres if we have excess. We have locations in Pekin, East Peoria, Morton, and Manito.

AER: Which AgriEnergy Resources products do you use? What benefits do you see from them?
MM: We put SP-1 on all of our seed to get the bacteria started early in the soil. We also put an AgriEnergy mix of potassium, sulfur, and micronutrients with all of our 28% nitrogen, either knifed in or through the irrigations. The AgriEnergy Mix seems to really help hold the nitrogen from leaching in our sandy soils. We also use a Pivot Mix to put any nutrients we are short on through the irrigations.

AER: In your opinion, what’s the most rewarding aspect of what you do?
MM: The most rewarding aspect to me is being able to watch my girls work on the farm and understand where their food comes from. It’s also being able to keep dollars local. Our customers enjoy knowing the food is picked fresh and is healthier than food shipped across the country or the ocean.

AER: Will you be adding any new crops for the next growing season?
MM: We continually look for new markets and will expand if the right situations arise.

At AgriEnergy Resources we’re big time supporters of biological farming and local foods. Thank you, Meyer Produce, for your dedication in growing healthy foods for the consumer!

 

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Priority #3 – Satisfy the Customer

The market is demanding cleaner, naturally produced food. Customers thrive on key words such as “non-GMO” “gluten-free” “no preservatives” “no artificial flavoring” “USDA organic” “antibiotic-free” and “grass-fed.” Why the sudden shift? Why are today’s customers consumed with things like transparency, labeling, and ingredient lists? Why are huge, and very successful, corporations bending to meet their needs? Could it be a paradigm shift in our culture? Or, something deeper that is yet unknown?

Last year we had the opportunity to speak on behalf of some of our customers in a national documentary, Organic Rising. Expected to be released later this year, it captures America’s explosive agricultural awakening through the voices of inspired mavericks and captivating visionaries who spearhead the country’s organic revolution. Years in the making, this feature documentary, for the first time ever, defines the positive impact organic agriculture has on human health and the environment while chronicling the movement’s implementation and participation in the USDA organic standards, its stunning growth, and the dynamic future that lies ahead. Organic Rising director Anthony Suau will share with us his findings at our upcoming seminar. Here’s a sneak peak of what’s to come.

Anthony Suau is a Pulitzer Prize and an Emmy Award winning journalist. For thirty-five years he has documented the effects of major events on the lives of people around the world with a specific focus on revealing social, economic and political injustice. For more than twenty of those years he worked as a contract correspondent for TIME and the National Geographic Magazine. He is the author of four books and his work has appeared in thousands of publications, museums and films worldwide.

Our seminar, Next Generation Farming: Yesterday’s Wisdom + Today’s Technology = Our Future, will be held from 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Tuesday, January 26 at the Timber Creek Convention Center, 3300 Drew Avenue, Sandwich, Illinois 60548. A block of rooms have been reserved at the Timber Creek Inn & Suites (attached to the convention center) 630-273-6000. Please note, there is no charge to attend this seminar. Reservations were due by January 18, but we have a limited number of seats available. Please RSVP to AgriEnergy Resources 815-872-1190 or info@agrienergy.net.

P.S. For daily seminar updates, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

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What are you thankful for?

Today, we’re thankful. Thankful to live in small-town U.S.A., capturing scenes like this, even in the midst of a storm.

Thanksgiving 2015

Reminders from up above that there is always a silver lining; you just need to know where to look. So, yes, today we are thankful to be a part of a growing agricultural community. We’re thankful for our roles in providing America with healthy food, beginning in healthy soil.

From our table to yours, Happy Thanksgiving!

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Goin’ Showin’

Picture this…

You wake up before the crack of dawn. Wash your steer. Dry your steer. Feed your steer. Fit your steer.

THEN, it’s show time. You walk into the ring, sweat dripping down your back, heart a pounding. The judge walks slowly around the ring evaluating each and every steer. You catch his eye. He sees you. He keeps watching you and your animal. The ring is silent. You can hear a pin drop. Then in one swift movement he slaps your steer. Your eyes well up as you catch your families eyes in the stands. Your mom is snapping pictures like a crazy lady. Your dad’s fist goes in the air with a victory punch. Your brother is stunned. Your sister is in shock. You just won the Illinois Sate Fair junior steer show. You can’t believe it. You set out with a goal the previous year and you achieved it. The long hours spent in the barn have finally paid off. You won the whole show.

Posing for a picture with Scotty (the show steer), country music star Scotty McCreery, and Governor Bruce Rauner, 4-Her Taylor Donelson, of McClean County, was all smiles during the Illinois State Fair 'Sale of Champions.' Scotty was performing in the grandstands when he heard the grand champion steer was named after him and thought he'd come check it out. Such a cool moment for Illinois 4-H! Photo credit: Scotty McCreery Facebook

Posing for a picture with Scotty (the show steer), country music star Scotty McCreery, and Governor Bruce Rauner, 4-Her Taylor Donelson, of McClean County, was all smiles during the Illinois State Fair ‘Sale of Champions.’ Scotty was performing in the grandstands when he heard the grand champion steer was named after him and thought he’d come check it out. Such a cool moment for Illinois 4-H! Photo credit: Scotty McCreery Facebook

While the entire audience can relate in your joy, there are some people, outside of the bleachers, who have no idea what it means to accomplish something as big as winning a livestock show. That is why, at this year’s Illinois State Fair, agriculture was brought back to the front and center, highlighting our state’s deep agricultural roots.

And that is why, we at AgriEnergy Resources, are proud supporters of the Illinois State Fair.

What was really neat about bringing agriculture back to the center of the fair, was that the championship drives was held in the Coliseum located right in the middle of the fairgrounds. Previously, the championship drives were held in the junior barns.

This year, people roaming the Midway had the opportunity to see for themselves how great agriculture is, including Governor Bruce Rauner and country music star and American Idol winner Scotty McCreery. They got in a bidding war during the auction of the grand champion steer. The governor ended up winning the bid with a record-breaking $61,000. Proceeds will go back to Illinois 4-H and FFA while the meat will be donated to the University of Illinois.

All in all, it was a great year for the Illinois State Fair and all the exhibitors. There’s something to be said about the fair, whether you’re into livestock or not. Among the array of foods, concerts, tractor pulls, demolition derbies, horse races, rides, games, there’s something for everyone.

We are so excited to see where the future of Illinois agriculture is heading and we can’t wait to visit our local county fair next week.

What’s your favorite part about the fair?

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2015 Ultimate Mac & Cheese Recipe Contest

Macaroni & Cheese In celebration of Dairy Month, the American Dairy Association Indiana INC. (ADAI) is on the hunt for the BEST mac & cheese recipe in all of America’s dairyland.

We agree with the ADAI, macaroni and cheese is the ultimate comfort food! There’s really no way to mess it up – buffalo chicken mac & cheese, mac & cheese with bacon, baked mac & cheese, and the list goes on.

So, in celebration of this classic American dish, and the farmers who produce the signature ingredients that make it such a family favorite, the ADAI is currently collecting recipes. The winning recipe will be featured at the Indiana State Fair in August.

Think you have what it takes? Submit your original macaroni and cheese recipe, the official entry form, and a photo of your dish here by June 30, 2015.

One finalist will be chosen from each of the 3 categories (Home Cook, Chef, Farmer) and must be available to prepare his/her recipe in the “Ultimate Mac & Cheese Recipe Cook-Off” August 15 at the 2015 Indiana State Fair.

Now off to brainstorm our own recipe…

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