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left over turkey

turkey leftovers–what to do?.

left over turkeys–what to do?!

Other than stomp and yell to make the toms fan their tails, gobble, and change head colors (they really do that!), what to do with unclaimed gobblers in the yard is a challenge.  Here’s a few of my ideas:

  1. Have a memorable company Christmas party: feature fresh turkey!  We can help youfill out your menu with local foods for a truely unique feast.
  2. Order now, freeze and save your turkey for a mid-winter celebration.  Nothing brightens grey February days like a special feast with a houseful of friends.  A home-grown, local turkey would make a great centerpiece and could feed as many people as you can brighten your home with.
  3. Purchase a gobbler for your very own yard.  Enjoy making him gobble and change head colors yourself!
  4. We can smoke your turkey whole or in pieces.  You would then have tasty, healthy, ready-to-eat snacks and meals for the busy holiday season.

Use your creativity!  What could you do with one of the tastiest turkeys in town?  We have the one for you!

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Turkeys and Lotsa chicken

Free Range Pasture custom raised turkeys

Welcome to the home of the happy hens.  The pasture is snowy and the kids are wearing snowpants and boots, but the fresh chicken, smoked chicken, yummy eggs, and meat processing continue on!

What a change this week from last! I wouldn’t have thought I’d be posting pictures of sledding and snowmobiling, but there you have it.   After Mark plowed the driveway, they had a really fast hill.  Joe reported their crash dummy went all the way across the road and “really crashed” into the swamp on the other side.  They always crash before the road, and that gets to be part of the fun.  The sunshine at the end of the week was appreciated and we made the most of it.  Cod liver oil & elderberry season is here, but any help from the sun is great.

The batting continues to go on the shop, closing up gaps in the siding.  We processed a lot of birds

Mark’s biggest job this week is marketing fresh turkeys for Thanksgiving.  There is nothing for flavor like a fresh, home grown turkey.  There is a new article (2 if I get time) on cooking fresh birds.  These birds are not pumped full of water or “self-basting brine” that evaporates as they cook.  You open the pan and have as much bird as you put in.  Last year we had a handful of turkeys (4 to be exact) and we had lots of positive comments on the flavor of the meat from those we shared them with.  Just like the chickens, there is nothing bland or mealy about these turkeys.  They’ve not been pastured, but they have had a clean environment and good, healthful feed.  We actually only have 7 out of 19 still available.  If you’re interested, let us know by Monday night as Tuesday is “D-day” with pick-up on Wednesday.  They’d also make a great Christmas party treat, so plan ahead and CALL TODAY!

Our other lastest greatest venture is a DELIVERY SERVICE in the Cadillac area.  For a paltry $5, we will deliver chicken, eggs, bagged compost (think spring!), and seasonal produce (think summer) to your door.  If you and your neighbors would like an uplifting visit from a pleasant fella bearing good food, let us know and we’ll add you to the route.

Even in these times, whether you are “participating in the recession” or not, every American has something to be thankful for.  Have a great Thanksgiving!

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Of Pasture & Produce

Baker's Green Acres - Sustainable Farm Michigan

This is sort of a follow-up to the “Seasonal Eating” article I wrote almost 2 months ago.  When I pasted it


 into the website, I debated whether or not I should wait and post it next year.  It’s in the articles file because that evening I decided to get some potatoes from their storage hills in the garden.  (Mark piled the potatoes in small piles, then covered them with straw, then with dirt for a total of 12-18 inches of protection.  Will keep you posted on how it works.)  I filled my recycled ice cream bucket half full, then thought maybe some carrots would be good, too.  So I meandered over to that row and pulled a couple big handfuls worth–maybe 12 bright orange and pale yellow, crisp looking carrots.  Then I thought to check a couple heads of cabbage that are still hanging out and nibbled on a couple of raw brussel sprouts while I was at it.  Amazing!  My garden still has quite a bit of stuff.  That doesn’t count the beets I threw over the fence to the begging goats–especially the big buck who has a special “baaaa” for begging produce.  That was a few weeks ago.  Tonight, the red cabbage in the crisper drawer wasn’t gonna be quite enough for a dinner stir-fry, so Sam went on a mission and retrieved a nice green cabbage from the “grape garden” for me.  What a beautiful stir-fry!  We had a boiled pastured chicken (not the best way, but quick!), very colorful stir-fried cabbage, green peppers, and carrots, and long grain brown rice for dinner.  Yum.  And all fresh from our farm, except for the rice, of course.  So, the season for eating fresh stuff isn’t quite over yet.  Close, though. We have nearly all the chickens out of tractors in the pasture and into the freezer.  The goats are appreciating their hay as the pasture’s frosted dry.  Joe harvested 6 meals of brussel sprouts Thursday.  After being in the garden for an hour, he confessed his bare toes were “a little numb.”  Maybe the season for shoes is upon us, too!!

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Smokin’ pumpkins & Smoking Chicken

Life on the Farm _ Bakers Green Acres
Welcome to this update from the northern Michigan Home of the Happy Hen, where pastured poultry still abound, the eggs are farm fresh and beautiful, the goat milk is fresh, and the kids can get happily dirty.

Last weekend we spent Saturday afternoon watching a fellow launch pumpkins across a hay field.  Joe & Sam have been interested in catapults and treboches since last spring, so they reveled in watching the 3 this fellow had built.  The largest one had a 2500 lb. loadstone, requiring a 100:1 ration minimum for its load.  A 25 lb. pumpkin is a big one, but we watched him successfully launch 2 of them.  It inspired a joke. Q: What do you get when you throw a pumpkin in the air?     A: A big squash.

Another great new idea: smoked boneless, skinless breast.  We’ve taste tested our share of the legs/thighs and wings, and thought, “why not?”  Wow.  The breast meat is a lot easier to make sandwiches out of, and I’m going to make squash soup tonight using that for the meat.  It’s juicy and flavorful.  We cut the brine time a bit this batch, so all the meats were less salty but just as full of spice and smoke.  If you haven’t tried our smoked chicken yet, you better stop by or order some delivered soon.  We will make more, but it’s tough to keep ahead of 6 kids who love good food!

The shop now has a roof!  The whole building is really looking good.  The guys have to finish the outside a bit yet and then they’ll start inside.  When Mark checked this coming week’s weather report, he was really glad for the closed in addition.  Scalding and plucking chickens is hard enough work without snow blowing or icy rain dripping down the back of your neck.  He’s going to get a rail hung inside there, too, so when you come by with your deer to be processed, we’ll have room for everyone!  Even if you don’t get a deer, feel free to stop by and see the changes.

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Welcome to the Home of Bakers Green Acres

Baker's Green Acres Farm - Beyond Organic Michigan Farm

Welcome to our farm on the web!

We are a small family farm set in a larger farm community in beautiful northern lower Michigan.  Local food, sustainably grown, is something we value and promote.  Pasture, the product of sunshine and soil, is the basis of our meat production.  Our chickens are raised on pasture for as much of the year as our northern climate permits.  Our goats, both meat and dairy, are also on grass and browse pastures from the first tender buds of spring to the bitter end of fall.  Pasture enables us to raise healthier, happier animals that result in the best tasting, highest quality meat possible.

Part of providing local food is being able to interact with the people enjoying the fruits of our labors.  We look forward to being able to update you on farm happenings, new ideas, and new products through this site, so check back to see what’s new.  This first page is also a blog, so we look forward to hearing your thoughts, ideas, and questions, too.

Come join us in the quest for great food and great community!