Winter 2020 REVOLUTIONIZING MOZZARELLA SCRATCH CAFÉ KEEPS IT LOCAL Stone-Ground Goodness Artisan millers deliver a taste of history Published exclusively for Pennsylvania Farm Bureau members
President’s Page Welcome to the new Positively Pennsylvania! Introducing you to the food and culture As I previewed in our last issue, we’ve made a few changes to the magazine that make Pennsylvania a great state. to keep it current as we begin our fourth year. In addition to updating the paper and design for a more modern look, we’ve expanded each issue to 36 pages. Winter 2020 Vol. 13 No. 1 You’ll still find all the same stories and features that you know and love—just more of them. Editorial Staff At the same time, we’re shifting to a quarterly publication schedule, with each issue covering a season. In essence, you’ll be getting more, just Publisher Joel Rotz in fewer packages. Of course, if you’re itching for more great information Editor Liam Migdail on Pennsylvania food and culture between issues, be sure to check out Art Director Lorraine Potochney-Kobold PositivelyPa.com for additional stories, features, recipes and videos. Graphic Designer Holly Cohick When I read the stories featured in this issue of Positively Pennsylvania, it makes me proud to be a Farm Bureau member, and a part of Pennsylvania Contact agriculture. Several highlight small businesses that are working hand-in-hand with farmers in their communities to create delicious, artisanal foods and craft [email protected] spirits. Another showcases a farmer-owned restaurant that sources everything PO Box 8736, Camp Hill, PA 17001-8736 down to the condiments locally. Another tells the story of a family that’s leveraging the power of farming to protect and enhance the environment. 717. 7 61 . 2 740 We know that these are the types of stories you care about as a Friend of Farm Bureau because you want to know more about your food and drink and Advertising Coordinator are dedicated to supporting the farmers who make it all happen. Your membership supports advocacy to ensure that Pennsylvania’s farm Kim Flegal | [email protected] | 717.731.3580 families can continue to produce local food. It supports efforts to improve infrastructure and internet access across the state. Your membership helped Connect bring the prestigious Leopold Conservation Award to the Keystone State to encourage protection of our natural resources (more about that on page 30). positivelypa.com | pfb.com In adddition to that value, your membership is also your ticket to having a closer connection to your food and drink through Positively Pennsylvania. Positively Pennsylvania (ISSN: USPS 2475- Now is the time of year when we ask you to renew your Farm Bureau 4595) is published by Pennsylvania Farm membership, if you have not done so already. I hope you will continue to be a Bureau four times per year in March, June, Friend of Farm Bureau in 2020 and join me in working towards our vision for September, and December. Paid for by $3 from Pennsylvania: People united around food, environment and community. membership dues as a subscription price. Periodicals Postage Paid at Camp Hill, PA and at Rick Ebert, PFB President additional mailing offices. Business and Editorial Offices: 510 S. 31st Street, Camp Hill, PA 17011- 5214, Accounting and Circulation Offices: 510 S. 31st Street, Camp Hill, PA 17011-5214. POSTMAS- TER: Send address changes to Pennsylvania Farm Bureau, 510 S. 31st Street, Camp Hill, PA 17011. Farm Bureau is not a government agency, but a voluntary organization rooted in agriculture which works to improve the quality of life of its members. One way Farm Bureau accomplishes this goal is by delivering savings to members on a broad array of useful products and services. Farm Bureau uses the group purchasing strength of its membership to leverage these valuable benefits. Your membership support is the driving force that enables Farm Bureau to secure a better price for you on things like vehicles, hotel lodging, amusement park tickets, utilities, and much more. Your membership is the power that makes your Farm Bureau savings possible! 2 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020
Contents 6 12 24 County Connect Moonlighting as Moonshiners Healthy Land, Healthy Farm 4 Exploring Mercer County 22 Craft spirits in elk country 30 Conservation central for farm family Stone-Ground Goodness Supporting Local Flavor Tater Talk 6 Artisan millers deliver taste of history 24 Cafe takes buy-local mission to heart 33 Tips for storing and baking potatoes The Curd That Saves the Herd Happening Here Garden Guidance 12 Cheesemaker support dairy farms 26 Ice fests, beer, Christmas and more 34 Restoring a view amid development Farm Fresh 18 Recipes with mozzarella and more positivelypa.com 3
County Connect Located in northwest Pennsylvania along the Ohio border, Mercer County is one of the top agricultural regions in Pennsylvania, ranking ninth among the state’s 67 counties for number of farms. While the county’s rolling farmland provides plenty of locally produced food, visitors can also enjoy the outdoors at recreational areas, such as Maurice K. Goddard Start Park and Shenango River Lake. There’s also plenty to do in Mercer County’s historic small towns and cities. The adjacent cities of Hermitage, Sharon and Farrell serve as the county’s shopping and cultural center. Meanwhile, small towns like Mercer, Grove City and Greenville offer rural charm. Photo Credit: Doug Butchy / CC-BY-2.0 Photo Credit: Jon-Mark Buhl Park Davey / CC-BY-2.0 buhlfarmpark.com Buhl Mansion This scenic, more than 260-acre park draws more than 400,000 buhlmansion.com visitors a year to Hermitage. Created in the early 1900s by local steel baron Frank H. Buhl, the park includes walking and This 1890s Richardsonian Romanesque castle in Sharon was biking trails, a disc golf course, golf course and driving range, designed by architect Charles Owsley and was a wedding playground and more. present from steel baron Frank H. Buhl to his wife, Julia. The site now houses a luxury inn, spa and wedding venue but guided Mercer Mercantile and Soda Shoppe historical tours are available by appointment. bit.ly/2ogeRvS Webb Winery Get a taste of nostalgia at this old fashioned soda counter webbwinery.com in Mercer. Restored in 1985, the shop features its original tin ceiling, an antique Coke machine, a 1950s jukebox, old This winery in Sharpsville crafts high quality wines from fruit fashioned sodas, malted milk shakes, penny candy and more. grown on family farms throughout the region. Stop by the tasting room in Hermitage to sample traditional varieties as well County Fact: Pennsylvania’s largest Swiss cheese as unique specialty wines such as a spiced wine made from local apples and a sweet and spicy wine made from local jalapeno manufacturer, Fairview Swiss, produces more than 7 peppers. million pounds of Swiss cheese per year in Fredonia, Mercer County. 4 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020
Kraynak’s Santa’s Christmasland kraynaks.com/christmas.html Starting in September, this Hermitage home and garden store transforms into a Christmas wonderland. Visitors can walk through a 300-foot indoor display featuring close to 100 themed Christmas trees, detailed decoration displays, model trains and life-like characters. Themes range from the traditional Christmas scenes to pop culture references. Of course, Santa Claus is on hand to greet visitors and take photos. The display has become a holiday tradition for many local families and draws visitors from all over western Pennsylvania. The store also puts on an Easter display beginning in late winter. Photo credit: Visit Mercer County PA positivelypa.com 5
Artisan millers deliver a taste of history. Story and photos by Liam Migdail Standing on the wooden-plank floors of Castle Valley Mill, surrounded by the whir of antique machinery, you’d swear the building has a heartbeat. An orchestra of grinding millstones, vibrating machines and rattling bucket elevators hum in perfect rhythm, conducted by an intricate system of belts and pulleys that wind throughout the more than 200-year-old mill’s three stories. It’s enough to shake the building as all the pieces move in concert to grind grains grown on nearby farms into the flour, grits, and other products that have become fast favorites of many of the Philadelphia area’s top chefs. “As soon as something goes wrong, you can tell,” remarks engineer-turned-miller Mark Fischer, who co- owns the Bucks County mill with his wife, Fran. “There’s something out of cadence.” It’s all by design. Like many grist mills from the early 19th century, Castle Valley is based on Philadelphia-area inventor Oliver Evans’ 1787 design for an automated flour mill, an invention so key to post-Revolutionary America that it received the third-ever U.S. patent. In fact, even as most milling has shifted away from stone buildings with water wheels to modern, factory-like settings, mills today are still rooted in basic principles of Evans’ design. It’s all about transporting grain through the cleaning and sorting processes so it can be ground—at least in the case of Castle Valley— between two heavy, stone discs. “It was really the beginning of the assembly line,” Fischer says. “They really had it figured out in the 1800s. It’s American ingenuity at its best.” “He looked at the mill building itself as a machine,” Fran Fischer adds. “It was really about the whole system.” 6 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020
Grain drops into a mill, where it will be The Fischers, Farm Bureau members, his homeland and, in his spare time, he ground between two stone discs. have spent the last decade restoring began to lay the groundwork to restore Castle Valley to a fully functioning grist the mill to working order. Antique mill stones used to grind grain. mill (it’s still a work in progress) as they’ve built a business supplying artisan “Every time there was a mill being Castle Valley Mill uses restored antique grains to chefs and other customers. torn down in Bucks County, he would equipment from the 1800s. While most take his moving truck and take what he of the products are stone-ground, this The mill—which first opened in 1730 could salvage,” Mark Fischer said. “He roller mill is used for specialty tasks. but was rebuilt in the early 1800s—is not had collected one of everything you 8 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020 the only piece of history the Fischers are need to run a mill.” hoping to revive through their business. In collaboration with local farmers, When Mark and Fran moved into the they’re working to bring back heirloom historic stone house on the mill property varieties of corn and wheat that have about 20 years ago, carrying on Henry’s largely disappeared from American mission to restore the mill seemed like cuisine. And they’re working with chefs a lofty goal. The mill building needed to reintroduce diners to stone-ground, lots of work and had become the family whole grains that pack a wallop of storage unit of sorts, packed to the brim nutrition and, more importantly, flavor. with old furniture, school textbooks, boxes. Much of the mill equipment “We’ve got the cute mom and pop Henry Fischer had salvaged was story and the beautiful mill, but we disassembled and in boxes. wouldn’t be successful if we didn’t have a product that tasted great,” Fran Fischer “It was an impossible task. There said. “Once the chefs get a hold of our was no way we were going to restore stuff, even in the little cotton bags that it,” Mark Fischer said. “God had other we started with, they’re like: ‘What’s plans.” this?’” The pieces started coming together. Impossible Task A local craftsman showed up out of Before the Midwest, Bucks County the blue, volunteering to help with the restoration work. Mark looked up was America’s breadbasket. patents and employed some “forensic Grain fields covered land that is now engineering” to figure out how 19th Century machines his grandfather largely an extension of the Philadelphia collected fit together within the larger suburbs. By the mid-1800s, there were system of the mill. Putting the puzzle about 300 mills in the county. But as the together, he restored the mill’s original region’s agricultural focus changed and systems, such as the bucket elevator that the Industrial Revolution brought less carries grain up to the third story of the reliance on water power, many closed mill where the cleaning process begins. and fell into disrepair. “There’s no manual on how you Castle Valley—once known as put together an 1800s grist mill,” Fran Grove’s Mill and Reed’s Mill—was in Fischer said. rough shape when Mark’s grandfather, Henry Fischer, bought the property There are a few modern additions as along the Neshaminy Creek in the late well. Originally, the system of belts and 1940s. A German immigrant, Henry pulleys that powers the mill machines Fischer had been a miller in Bavaria would have been cranked by a water but went into the moving business wheel. Now, the Fischers use a series in Pennsylvania. Living alongside the of electric motors to power the mill, historic mill gave him a reminder of although they are in the process of restoring water power. They also added
Castle Valley Mill sits on Neshaminy Creek in Bucks County. In the 1800s, it was powered by a water wheel. modern equipment to package their grains to a handful of craft breweries to expanding retail sales is that the fresh- ground products are perishable and need products (at first, Fran did it by hand). and distilleries. They work with a pasta to stay refrigerated. And for food safety reasons, they added producer to produce a whole-grain pasta “We put a huge effort into keeping it as fresh as possible,” Fran Fischer said. pneumatic tubes to transport the grain made from their grains. “It’s a completely different flour, much higher nutrition.” during the latter part of the process. Restaurants make up the The stone grinding is what makes Completely Different Flour overwhelming majority of Castle Valley’s Castle Valley’s products different from what most consumers are accustomed to. Today, the Fischers operate the mill customers. Word of mouth and social As the grain is pulverized by the heavy with the help of two full-time and two media helped popularize the products stones, all three parts of the grain seed— part-time employees. among chefs across the Philadelphia bran, germ and endosperm—are mixed into the final product. White flour is They offer a line-up region as well as into processed to keep only the endosperm, of stone-ground products the New York and the starchy part of the seed, while the including several varieties Washington areas. Castle bran and germ, which contain many of Valley’s products are the nutrients, are discarded. Bucksof coarse and fine flour, available in several retail Countycornmeal, grits and stores around the area “Stone milling is like scrambling an and through the mill’s oatmeal. They also sell online store (the mill cleaned, whole wheat itself is not open to the public for safety and rye berries, which can be cooked reasons). One of the biggest challenges like rice or used in a pilaf, and supply positivelypa.com 9
egg, everything that’s in the egg is in we’ll pay substantially more for these An intricate system of belts and pulleys your omelet,” Mark Fischer said. “White small grains than they’d receive growing powers a system of machines that trans- flour is like separating the yolk from the commodity crops.” port, clean and grind grain at Castle Val- white.” ley Mill. The mill uses a system designed “Part of our mission,” he added, “as in the late 1700s. Even Castle Valley’s finer-textured small as it is, is to help farmers make flours, used for pastries, pasta, pizza, money.” cakes and similar items, are stone ground and then sifted—or “bolted”—to As they experiment with different remove some of the coarsest bits of the grains, the Fischers need to be in tune bran. A similar process separates the with culinary trends to make sure there’s ground corn into the finer cornmeal and a market for what they’re producing. the coarser grits or polenta. “In the 10 years that we’ve been The Fischers work closely with local doing this, we’ve seen products rise to farmers to produce heirloom grains that fame and then fade away,” Fran Fischer are no longer widely cultivated, such said. as the spelt, emmer farro, and einkorn varieties of wheat and the Bloody Like the moving parts of the mill Butcher and Wapsie Valley corn varieties. itself, the millers, chefs and farmers need Such grains are harder to grow than to be working in concert as they set and modern crops and come at a higher follow culinary trends. Mark Fischer risk to the farmer. But the Fischers are likens it to a train. willing to pay more for the specialty grains, enabling the farmers they work “You have to get all four entities on with to prioritize quality over quantity. this train and everybody has to be at the same speed,” he said. “Because if the “Recently, within the span of three farmer grows a weird corn that nobody days, I talked with three farmers who wants, now you’ve got really expensive were talking about getting out of cow food.” farming,” Mark Fischer said. “I was like: ‘No, don’t. Grow for us.’ Because Learn more castlevalleymill.com 10 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020
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The Curd That Saves the Herd Cheesemakers show how small Food Stores—settles on the surface “Our big mission—besides businesses can help make a of a large vat. Nearby, a handful of revolutionizing mozzarella—is to make brighter future for dairy farmers. employees are busy at work. One spoons a more sustainable milk market for fresh-cooked ricotta cheese into strainers dairy farmers,” Rynn Caputo said. “We Story and photos by Liam Migdail to drain excess liquid. Another packages didn’t know we were going to save dairy large blocks of cagliata curd, the building farms. We got into this business because Above the large window looking block restaurant customers will use to mozzarella wasn’t being made in this out over the cheesemaking floor of hand-stretch their own Italian, pasta country the way it should be, ricotta Caputo Brothers Creamery, Rynn Caputo filata (or stretched-curd) type cheeses, wasn’t being made in this country the displays a framed photo to remind her like mozzarella, provolone and burrata. way it should be.” of the “cute, little cheese business” she and her husband, David, started in their Along with the other changes, the Caputo Brothers sources its milk home almost a decade ago. York County creamery’s mission has exclusively from two nearby dairy farms evolved as well. Borne from the Caputos’ and has plans to bring on more as cheese The meager setup in the photo frustration over having difficulty finding production continues to expand. And is a far cry from the sophisticated authentic, Italian cheeses, the business through practices like buying directly cheesemaking operation on the other has taken on the larger purpose of from farmers, paying well above the side of the glass. Beyond the window, helping to save one of Pennsylvania’s mailbox prices farmers would typically the curd that will become the next batch most important industries. It’s summed receive for their milk, and controlling of Troegenator Beer Cheese—a special in block letters on a signboard behind ancillary costs by taking care of collaboration between the creamery, the counter of the on-site cheese shop: transportation and other logistics, the Tröegs Independent Brewing, and Giant “The curd that saves the herd.” Caputos are hoping to perfect a model for how small businesses and small farms can join forces to thrive in an increasingly hostile economic climate. “We feel like the time is upon us to just shift the paradigm, to just look at dairy in a different way,” Caputo said. “We really need our dairy farmers to be sustainable. If either of us goes away, the other is hosed.” Chad Kolaric ladles freshly cooked ricotta cheese into plastic strainers. The cheese will Still growing sit in the strainers overnight as excess liquid drips off. The Caputos, Farm Bureau members, were working in Fortune 500 jobs (Rynn in supply-management tech and David in pharmaceutical sales) when they met on the Jersey shore. They decided on their honeymoon to quit their jobs and go to culinary school in Italy. They came back determined to work with food and began brainstorming how they could put their 12 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020
Rynn Caputo poses in Caputo Brothers Creamery’s cheese cave.
Lancaster—and as far as Juneau, Alaska. At first, Caputo Brothers sourced all its milk from Apple Valley Creamery in nearby Adams County. But as production expanded, the creamery needed an additional source for raw milk. So the Caputos bought a milk-tank trailer to pick up raw milk directly from farms and began looking for an additional supplier. Kyle Dunn packages wedges Hallelujah moment of Troegenator Beer Cheese. In 2018, years of financial stress on Fresh cagliata curd, the base used to Pennsylvania dairy farmers reached a make a variety of Italian cheeses. breaking point. new culinary skills into practice. expanded out of the Caputos’ home and Facing an extended slump in milk It wasn’t long before they identified prices amid rising production costs, into a commercial creamery in Spring many dairy families were forced into a need that was not being filled. In Italy, the heart-wrenching decision to sell they had enjoyed access to cheeses Grove, about 10 miles southwest of their cows, stepping away from the made the traditional way, using bacteria lifestyle they loved and generations-old cultures to ferment milk, separating the York, which also houses a retail cheese family businesses. Pennsylvania lost an curds and whey. At home, authentic, unprecedented 370 dairy farms in 2018. Italian cheese was difficult, if not shop and La Tavola, a venue where the impossible, to find. So they started Daniel and Lori Baumgardner were Caputo Brothers—named for their now creamery hosts farm-to-table dinners, among those feeling the strain. 11- and 9-year-old sons, Giovanni and Matteo—and began making mozzarella cheesemaking classes and cooking The Baumgardners, Farm Bureau to sell at local farmers markets. members, had spent their adult lives demonstrations. milking cows twice a day on their 200- “If there had been good quality acre farm in York County. Daniel’s father ricotta and mozzarella in this country, The cheese is sold had bought the farm in the 70s, moving Dave and I would have done something from another dairy in nearby Adams different,” Caputo said. at the store, online and York County. The Baumgardners raised their in select groceries and County family there and made a living supplying Today, the creamery has grown from specialty shops across milk to their dairy cooperative. a mom and pop operation to one with more than 20 employees producing the northeast and But in recent years, it about 250,000 pounds. And the became harder and harder operation is still growing. Production has beyond. The creamery’s to make ends meet. They were receiving about $12 per biggest market is the Pittsburgh area and hundred pounds of milk— about 11 to 12 gallons— national magazine coverage helped the which cost $20 to produce. “We were losing money every day Caputos break into the lucrative New we decided to stay in business,” Lori Baumgardner said. “By summer of 2018, York City market. Restaurants are a big we were having serious talks about: ‘Are we going to keep doing it?’” piece of the customer base. Caputo “Over and over, it just came back to the cows,” she continued. “We all love Brothers mozzarella can be found on the cows. They’re kind of our world. pizzas nearby—at places like Luca, a critically acclaimed Italian restaurant in 14 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020
Daniel Baumgardner secures his cows in the barn as he pre- pares for afternoon milking. Working with Caputo Brothers has enabled the farm to be profitable without growing too big for the family to manage on their own. Lori and Daniel Baumgardner were facing the likelihood of hav- ing to give up their York County dairy farm before becoming one of Caputo Brothers’ milk suppliers. That’s how it is when you do this all your feeling that everything we worked our and a local product. life. When you’re in dairy, it’s all you do.” rear ends off for was going down the “It’s neat,” Lori added. “It’s been kind tubes,” Lori Baumgardner said. “But The Baumgardners thought about then when it all came together, we had of exciting tasting the cheese that’s made cashing in their retirement to get the that hallelujah moment.” from our milk.” funds needed to keep the farm afloat. But with no end to the dairy crisis in Working hand-in-hand with Caputo, Turning the Industry On Its Head sight, they knew that was too risky. the Baumgardners adjust production Caputo Brothers has benefited from Painfully, they began to realize that the to meet the creamery’s needs. It’s a only path forward, was likely to sell the different, and exciting, type of challenge, the relationship as well. herd by the end of the year. Daniel said. While his milk check before “We buy directly from the farm, we was based on quantity, the creamery is “We were just going backwards all the more interested in characteristics of the control all the costs between and we sell time,” Daniel Baumgardner said. milk, like fat content and pH level. directly to the consumer,” Caputo said. That’s when they connected with The better milk price enables the That arrangement enables the Rynn Caputo, who needed more local farm to remain profitable while staying creamery to pay its farmers what they milk and was willing to pay more than within a size that the family—the need to remain financially sustainable double the going mailbox price. The Baumgardners and three of their adult into the future. At the same time, Caputo week of Thanksgiving, Caputo Brothers’ children who help on the farm— makes sure every ounce of the milk she new milk truck made its first pickup at can manage on their own. And the buys goes towards turning a profit. the Baumgardners’ farm. Baumgardners say they take pride in the direct connection between their farm “We try to work with zero waste “When we thought we were going so we can literally get everything we under, we had that horrible sinking possibly can out of the milk,” she said. Raw milk from the farms is positivelypa.com 15
Rynn Caputo looks over cheeses aging in Caputo Brothers Creamery’s cheese cave. pasteurized, then heated with live themselves—with training from Caputo she hopes Caputo Brothers can serve as cultures in a vat. As the milk ferments, Brothers—so that it’s fresh each day. a model for how small dairy farms can the cheese curd separates from the survive by working with local processors. whey. The leftover whey is cooked again “It’s like another tool in their kitchen to produce ricotta—which translate when they can kind of be creative She thinks back to her early from Italian to “recooked.” Some of with different varieties of mozzarella,” conversations with the Baumgardners, the ricotta cheese is sold and some Caputo said. when she learned just how dire a is seasoned and aged to create the situation many dairy families are creamery’s award-winning ricotta salata The creamery also sells cagliata to facing. And she thinks about what the vecchio. The creamery also produces and retail customers so they can stretch their promise of a successful future that their sells cultured butter from leftover milk own cheese at home as well as other do- partnership has brought the family. fat, another byproduct of cheesemaking. it-yourself products such as a lasagna kit and make-your-own cannoli package. “They’re able to keep their kids The Italian-style curd, cagliata, is on the farm. The next generation can essentially a blank canvass. With a The Troegenator cheese has been a stay,” Caputo said. “I think there’s this little elbow grease and salt, it can be bit of a different undertaking, Caputo misconception out there that they are transformed into a variety of cheeses, said, as it’s more of a Gouda than not interested. What we find is the next including fresh mozzarella, provolone, Italian-style. But it’s proving popular. In generation is extremely interested. The burrata and scamorza. Caputo Brothers mid-September, only a few weeks after problem is if you’re a parent and you hand-stretches its own fresh mozzarella shipping the first batch, the creamery don’t see a path forward, you don’t want daily and also makes a variety of aged, had already sold 10,000 pounds. that for your kids. What we’re trying to spiced and smoked cheeses. But most say is: Yes, there is a future. We just have restaurant customers simply buy the Caputo said she has more than a to turn it on its head.” cagliata and then stretch the cheese dozen local farms lined up hoping to sell her milk. She can’t work with all of Learn more them—adding one more farm would mean tripling cheese production. But caputobrotherscreamery.com 16 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020
Pennsylvania. IT'S ALWAYS IN SEASON. b y l c l, s p o t a s r n e c m o w a t . p e r d.c m Paid for with Pennsylvania taxpayer dollars.
Smokey Italian Cheese Dip Ingredients ½ pound smoked mozzarella, shredded ½ pound provolone, shredded ½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated ½ cup sour cream 2 teaspoons olive oil 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 small shallot, minced ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning Salt and pepper Directions Heat olive oil in a small skillet and sauté garlic, shallots and red pepper flakes until fragrant, one to two minutes. Remove from heat. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl, combine all remaining ingredients as well as the olive oil mixture. Season with salt and pepper according to taste. Spread cheese mixture in an even layer in a pie pan or oven-safe skillet and bake until cheese is bubbling, about 20 minutes. Finish under broiler for two minutes. Garnish with diced tomatoes and chopped parsley and serve with Italian bread or crostini. Cheesy Baked Ziti with Sausage and Zucchini Ingredients 1 pound ziti pasta, cooked and drained 1 pound ground Italian sausage 1 pound shredded mozzarella cheese 1 ½ cups ricotta cheese ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese 2 eggs, lightly beaten ¼ cup fresh chopped parsley, plus extra for garnish 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 medium onion, diced positivelypa.com 19
1 medium or large zucchini, diced 4 cloves garlic, minced 2 ½ cups tomato sauce (canned or homemade) 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning Salt and pepper Directions Winter Panzanella Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Heat olive oil over medium- with Fresh Mozzarella high heat in a large sauté pan or Dutch oven. Add sausage in small chunks and cook until browned on one side, about one to Ingredients two minutes. Flip with a wooden spatula and brown on other side, breaking sausage chunks into small pieces with the spatula. 4 cups crusty Italian bread, cut into cubes Remove sausage bits with a slotted spoon and tent with foil. 2 pints cherry tomatoes ½ pound fresh mozzarella cheese, cubed Reduce heat to medium and sauté onion until slightly 1 small red onion, halved then sliced thin translucent, about three to five minutes. Add zucchini and sauté 2 tablespoons fresh basil, cut into thin ribbons until soft and lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and 3 cloves garlic sauté until fragrant, about a minute. Add tomato sauce, scraping ½ cup olive oil, divided browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Mix in Italian 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar seasoning and season with salt and pepper according to taste. 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard Return sausage to pan and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to Salt and pepper low, simmer for five minutes and remove from heat. Directions In a mixing bowl, combine eggs, ricotta, parsley, Parmesan and half of the shredded mozzarella. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together vinegar and mustard. Add ¼ cup oil in a slow, steady stream while whisking to create Add pasta to sauce and mix to an emulsion. Add sliced onion and toss to marinate. combine. Add cheese mixture in spoonfuls and mix just enough to Heat two tablespoons oil in a 12-inch pan over medium-high slightly combine. Spread pasta heat. Add tomatoes and roast until skin starts to blister, about mixture in an even layer in five minutes. Add garlic and sauté for about a minute. Empty a lasagna pan and top with contents of pan into a large mixing bowl and set aside. Return remaining mozzarella. Bake pan to heat and add remaining two tablespoons oil. Add bread until bubbling, about 20 cubes and toast, turning occasionally, for about five minutes. minutes. Garnish with Add to tomatoes and let cool. chopped parsley. Add basil and mozzarella to bowl with tomatoes and bread cubes. Add dressing and onion and toss to combine. Let sit at least 15 minutes before serving. 20 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020
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Moonlighting as Moonshiners Entrepreneurs bring the Hill Distillery has branched out to two County, while nearly all of the flavoring craft spirits movement to new locations, offering special bottles is sourced locally. Pennsylvania’s elk country. of their flavored moonshine near the Elk Country Visitor Center in nearby “Every product in here comes from Story and photos by Darrin Youker Benezette and near Cook Forest—one a farmer,” Meyer said. “We buy a lot of of the most popular state parks. local products.” What does an excavating business, a home builder and a distillery have in Chicken Hill Distillery starts with a Chicken Hill Distillery is clearly common? In the case of Chicken Hill simple product—good old fashioned capitalizing on the tourist trade Distillery, it’s two successful businessmen moonshine—and then mixes in 24 that comes through this region of who used their marketing skills and different flavors. The process turns Pennsylvania to see the state’s elk herd, business acumen to open Elk County’s what can be a potent concoction into a experience the rich forested landscape first distillery. delicious beverage. One of their most and enjoy the miles of hiking trails and popular flavors is apple pie moonshine river bends waiting for exploration. Chicken Hill Distillery is the that tastes just like the real thing. brainchild of Chris Kline and Dan “Our town has about 3,000 people,” Meyer, both of whom also operate “You can taste the butter in our apple Kline said. “We have to market to the separate business ventures in the area. pie,” Kline said. “It’s that realistic.” tourists that are coming through this area However, these two businessmen saw an each week.” opportunity to bring the growing craft Moonshine starts with simple beverage movement to the PA Wilds. ingredients, like corn, which are distilled Kline and Meyer who are related into very potent alcohol. Raw moonshine by marriage, both owned successful “This is my full-time, part-time job,” comes out of the initial distilling process businesses before they ever got into said Kline, a Farm Bureau member. at 190 proof alcohol. Distillers then add making moonshine. Meyer has his own “But, that’s what you have to do to make other ingredients to cut down the proof. construction company, while Kline owns it work.” a stone and mulch yard in Elk County. Chicken Hill Distillery wanted to Since opening in 2018, Chicken use as many local products as possible. Kline and Meyer had owned a The grain comes from nearby Clarion restaurant in Kersey but while the Dan Meyer, left, and Chris Kline pose in business was profitable, the business the tasting room of Chicken Hill Distillery. partners felt like there was a better 22 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020 use for the location. Even though the hospitality trade was alive and well in Elk County—including several popular wineries—no one at the time had opened up a commercial distillery. They tapped into the expertise of a local distiller who explained the basics of the process. From there, they started experimenting with different flavors to see what might appeal to customers. They also got a taste of the amount of regulation and oversight goes into the distilling process. Every product needs federal approval, even down to the label. “This was going to be a side job for
Elk County Chicken Hill Distillery produces its moonshine by adding flavors, such as apple pie, to neutral distilled spirits. the both of us, but it still took us a year “When we opened our store, it really “I’d eventually like to get out of to get our license,” Kline said. opened my eyes to how much tourism construction and focus on making our elk herd brings,” Meyer said. “We good moonshine,” Meyer said. “We Pretty quickly, Kline and Meyer have a steady stream of business from started out with the goal of making a locked into the potential of marketing spring to fall. We just need to find ways decent product. You start out with great their product to tourists. While they to bring more folks in during the winter.” aspirations but you never know how it are marketing their product as a local might go.” beverage, their business model is based Despite working other full-time jobs on visitors coming to the area looking and successful businesses, Kline and Learn more for something extra to do after viewing Meyer do want to slow down the pace elk and exploring the Pennsylvania Wilds. and focus on just one job—distilling. chickenhilldistillery.com Continue Your Support of Pennsylvania Farm Bureau Choose MSC Business Services for various personal and business tax related services. Let us put our expertise to work for you: • Tax Planning and Preparation • Bookkeeping and QuickBooks Pro Advisor • Payroll Services • Small Business and Agriculture Software • Transition Planning and Business Consulting 717.731.3517 | [email protected] | www.mscbusiness.net positivelypa.com 23
Supporting Local Flavor Farmer-owned café takes buy-local mission to heart. Story and photos by Jamie Klein On a cloudy Saturday morning in County, feels a deep connection to the they quickly catch up. The conversation September, men and women gather to Back Mountain Farmers Market. To rolls around to free time, which isn’t a do their grocery shopping in the parking him, the market represents the “buy concept Banta is too familiar with. No lot of Dallas Senior High School in local” movement, which is something farmer really is, he says. northeast Pennsylvania. Banta has made serious commitments to supporting. The movement has gained “You have to make time for yourself,” The Back Mountain Farmers Market traction. In a report on local food, the friend said. has something for everyone. There’s USDA said direct to consumer food sales gourmet popcorn from Pittstown increased threefold from 1992 to 2007. Banta considers this. He already has Popcorn, apples and fruits from nearby Monetarily speaking, that translates to a plans to reflect on his commitments over Brace’s Orchard, honey from The jump from $404 million to $1.2 billion, the winter, when things slow down. That Beekeeper’s Daughter, loaves from and estimates show that number had doesn’t seem too likely, though, as Banta Beta Bread—a range of organic and grown to $6.1 billion by 2012. is tending the hydroponic system year- conventional products to satisfy any round, has four kids, the new market shoppers’ wishes. Banta, a Farm Bureau member, has and is heavily involved in the farming used several vendors at the farmers community. And that’s the point, said market market to stock his most recent business coordinator Harold Koehler. In his venture—The Wandering Hen Café Farming is in his blood. His parents opinion, no one stand is more popular and Market in downtown Scranton. were farmers and Banta can’t imagine than the others because each stand has Wandering Hen takes the farm-to-table giving it up. He enjoys being free from its own draw. concept to heart. Whatever can be an office or factory, and making a living sourced locally is—even down to the doing something that creates healthy But one farmer’s growing practices ketchup—and is presented in a pleasing food. In the hydroponic greenhouse, make him stand out from the others. way. It’s demanding work, but it’s part Banta grows a variety of lettuce: Rowlands Pennsylvania Produce owner of Banta’s mission to support local romaine, spring mix, bib, kale, arugula, Bill Banta’s claim to fame at the market agriculture. Asian mustard greens and others. is that his lettuce is grown using a hydroponic system. The lettuce is not On this particular Saturday, Banta “The lettuce don’t yell or talk back,” planted in soil but instead grows in small leaves his stand for a moment and Banta likes to say. streams of water, which allows him to walks down the center of the market. grow greens all year long. As he’s walking, a friend stops him and He also grows tomatoes, cucumbers, herbs and peppers. Banta, who farms in nearby Wyoming Before they part, Banta agrees to be a 24 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020 speaker at the friend’s church.
Lackawanna A sampling of locally sourced dishes County from The Wandering Hen. Below: Bill Banta talks with customers at The Wandering Hen. positivelypa.com 25
He returns to his stand, where his like apples from Brace’s Orchard, beef wife, Amanda, and one of his sons are brisket from Wayne County, cheese from tending to customers, handles a few sales Lancaster County, and horseradish from and then heads to his truck. Today he Allentown. plans to check in at the café. “My wife and I’s biggest passion is He decides to take back roads from supporting local agriculture,” Banta said. Dallas to Scranton. The scenery changes “This is a way and a means to do that. along the route—there’s wild, untended It’s another way of creating space for fields, neat farm fields, a country club. local agriculture.” He has to stop himself from pulling into a yard sale. Their employees share that passion for providing good food and supporting He drives into the alley behind local agriculture. Penn Avenue and parks behind The Wandering Hen. The Bantas purchased Head Chef James Bolus is a the building last November. Amanda classically trained chef who spent had always dreamed of running a café, eight years in kitchens in Philadelphia so when they heard the building was for before joining the Wandering Hen. He sale it made sense to them to go for it. had grown tired of the unsatisfactory ingredients available in the kitchens The café has a rustic charm, with where he worked. exposed brick walls and wooden beams across the ceiling. The space is divided He likes to focus on foods that are into two parts; the marketplace is at the nutrient-dense and good for digestion. front and a dining area in the back. The The restaurant makes everything it can market features locally sourced products from scratch. For example, the ranch dressing in the popular Summer Bibb 26 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020
Bill Banta poses in his hydroponic grow house, which enables him to supply his café and other customers with locally grown lettuce and salad greens year-round. Salad is made in the kitchen, even down Banta manages the café’s Facebook friend’s suggestion that he take time for to the buttermilk. The nutrient-rich page, and five other pages related to himself. bread used in another popular dish, the agriculture. It’s part of being involved Egg & Cress, is specially sourced from in the community. To that extent, Banta “Somehow I need to find a way to a local bakery and made from Lancaster and Amanda created NEPA Chefs blend my passion for work and doing county grains. for Sustainability two years ago. The everything, being part of organizations, organization runs fundraisers to save with having personal down time for “Whatever difference we can make, farms in financial crisis. Basically, they myself and my family,” Banta said. “It’s it’s kind of our obligation at this point,” host 20 chefs and challenge them to not easy as a farmer to get any.” Bolus said. “We use quality ingredients.” make a locally sourced meal and raise money by selling tickets to the dinner. “I don’t know how it’s going to Banta has lunch at the café, but happen,” he concedes with a chuckle. before he eats, he stops and takes Farmers help farmers, he says of “I’m optimistic.” a photo of his plate and posts it to their work. Facebook. “Our Summer Bib Salad,” he Learn more captions it. During lunch, Banta recalls his wanderinghencafe.com positivelypa.com 27
Happening Here Photo Credit: Karl Mischer, Jr. Nov. 28 - Dec. 15 | Beaver County Dec. 14 | Montgomery County Dec. 30-31 | Northampton County Beaver County Christmas Valley Forge Beer and Cider PEEPSFEST Extravaganza Festival steelstacks.org/festivals/peepsfest beavercountyfestivaloftrees.org valleyforgebeerfest.com This New Year’s Eve extravaganza celebrates one of the Keystone Formerly known as the “Beaver County Sample more than 150 varieties of craft State’s iconic candies—Peeps. Bring Festival of Trees,” this 30-year-old beer and cider while enjoying some the whole family to the Steel Stacks community event celebrates all things holiday festivities, including an ugly venue in Bethlehem for dancing, kids’ Christmas. See decorated trees and Christmas sweater competition. There activities, live music and, of course, the wreaths, take in a toy train display, eat will also be local food trucks and other annual Peeps Chick Drop, featuring a breakfast with Santa, visit the Candy exhibitors. 400-pound lit Peeps chick. Cane Lane gift shop and more. And it’s all for a good cause: raising funds for local search and rescue operations and to improve the lives of children involved with the county’s Children and Youth Services program. — youDec. 5-6 | Mifflin County You Work Hard.JuniataRiverValley work—Festival of Ice We’ll Work for Youjrvvisitors.com/events/festival-of-ice Visitors come from all over the region for the main attractions at this annual Over 180 Pagesfestival in downtown Lewistown: taking in the ice sculptures and seeing live ice harEachdWeekcarving. But there are plenty of other activities for the whole family to enjoy Each edition of Lancaster Farming As a subscriber, you including wagon rides, a live nativity, is packed with: get 2 free Mailbox Markets food vendors, a petting zoo and photos • Classified listings ads per month (a $300 value) with Santa Claus. • Trucks, tractors, heavy equipment Sell your items fast! $133! – new & used Plus, you’ll get free access to our digital e-edition. Read it “Lancaster Farming is a part of our family. • Auction listings anywhere, anytime! We’ve built traditions around getting the publication. We always knew what was going • Ag news and market reports on in ‘our world’ from getting the paper.” Call 717-721-4412 to start your subscription today! — BILL KILGORE 28 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020 A Steinman Communications Company
Photo Credit: Jen Wetzel Jan. 17-19 | Warren County Jan. 30 - Feb. 2 | Franklin County Feb. 14-16 | Lancaster County Warren County Winterfest IceFest PA Rose and Shamrock Festival warrencountywinterfest.com icefestpa.com roseandshamrock.org Held each year in Chapman State Park, Downtown Chambersburg is host to the This Irish cultural celebration draws this family festival celebrates the fun of state’s largest ice festival, featuring more more than 3,000 people to downtown winter in the Pennsylvania Wilds. There’s than 70 sculptures made of more than Lancaster for dancing, music art and a polar bear plunge, sled dog races, 30 tons of ice combined. In addition more. Watch or participate in Irish art, sledding hill, ice fishing derby and more. to the main attraction, there’s also live music, dancing, bagpiping and cooking Warm up with hot food and drinks and carvings, the Snowfall Ball, a chili cook- competitions; enjoy performances by shop with a variety of craft vendors. off, polar plunge, live glass blowing, an Irish musicians; learn at workshops and ice slide and more. Proceeds raise funds seminars; and more. for local community organizations. Confused by healthcare options Open Enrollment for Individual/Family, Medicare and Dental/Vision Coverage for 2020 Is Ending Soon! Premium Farm Bureau’s Health Services staff are ready to help. Diagnos Costs At no cost to you, we can: tics • Answer your questions • Customize and compare your plan options • Work within your budget • Help you make informed decisions about coverage options The Open Enrollment Period Coverage Deadlines for a January 1 effective date Individual & Family Coverage: November 1 - December 15 Senior/Medicare Coverage: October 15 - December 7 PFB Group Dental & Vision Coverage*: November 1 - December 31 Employer Group Coverage: Coverage written 1st of any month Knowledgeable. Helpful. Dedicated. * Current PFB membership required. For plan and rate information 800.522.2375 | www.pfb.com/healthservices Licensed with all the major health insurance companies operating in PA. positivelypa.com 29
Healthy Land, Dohl and Rich DiFebo. Healthy Farm Northampton County farmers see conservation as central to their business. Story and photos by Liam Migdail as a ‘carbon sink,’ pulling greenhouse and began converting cropland that had gases out of the atmosphere and storing been susceptible to erosion into grazing On the hilly pastures of the DiFebo them in the ground. At the same time, pastures. family’s Northampton County beef the DiFebos are able to raise more cattle farm, there’s a delicately balanced without increasing their environmental “We knew putting cattle back on the ecosystem where cattle live in symbiosis footprint. land, it was going to improve soil quality with the land. quicker and with the least amount of In fact, it was a simple business cost,” DiFebo said. The pasture provides lush grass for decision prompted Rich DiFebo’s efforts the cattle to munch on as they take in to improve soil quality and protect In the two decades since, the farm— a vista of the Delaware River valley’s natural resources. When he began Harvest Home Meats—has become a rolling hills. In turn, the cattle maintain farming on his in-laws’ former dairy model of sorts for sound conservation and fertilize the grass, improving the farm in the mid-90s, the land needed practices. Those efforts earned the farm health of the soil and pasture. some work to remain profitable. Erosion recognition as the first-ever Pennsylvania and diminished soil quality had hurt recipient of the Leopold Conservation The benefits of this relationship are the land’s productivity. DiFebo figured Award, one of the most prestigious many. A healthy pasture keeps nutrient- that if he was going to make any money honors recognizing conservation by rich soil where it belongs—in the field farming, he needed to bring the land private landowners. producing nutritious grass—instead of back to good health. washing away downhill to pollute streams DiFebo operates the business and rivers. Parts of the farm even serve So he started a grass-fed beef herd along with his son, Dohl DiFebo, who purchased the farm from his Part of the DiFebos’ farm includes a public-use trail and outdoor classroom with displays educating visitors about conservation practices. 30 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020
Above: Calves hide in the tall grass as they graze in the DiFebos’ pasture. Left: Cattle graze in the pasture. grandparents and other family members interest in grass-fed and pasture-raised in January. in 2014. His wife, Lynn, and other son, meats has presented the farm with new “It was well worth doing all that stuff Dane, are also involved in the operation. marketing opportunities. over the years and then to be recognized To the DiFebos, Farm Bureau “We were basically putting cattle for the good we’ve done,” said Dohl members, the business calculation on the land to improve soil conditions, DiFebo. He added that the publicity remains simple: Good conservation not knowing that we were producing a surrounding the award has also helped keeps nutrients on the farm, makes high-quality product that there was high to educate neighbors and others in the the soil healthier and leads to better demand for,” he said. community about the conservation production, all of which helps the practices they implement on the farm. bottom line. But they also have another Presented by the Sand County reason to be stewardship-minded. The Foundation, the nation’s leading voice The farm today includes about 500 farm is preserved, which means it won’t for conservation of private land, the acres of both owned and rented land, be developed. But for it to remain a Leopold Conservation Award recognizes much of which is grazing pasture. The viable farm for generations to come, the landowners who inspire others with their DiFebos use a system of movable fences land needs to remain farmable. dedication to land, water and wildlife to create grazing paddocks. The cattle are management on private, working land. moved daily to evenly distribute nutrients “We want to protect all these natural across the land and give sections of the resources so, down the road, it can be The $10,000 award is presented to pasture a long time to recover—usually profitable for someone,” Rich DiFebo landowners in 13 states each year in about 70 days—before the next grazing. said. honor of renowned conservationist Aldo Leopold. It was offered in Pennsylvania On less erodible land, the DiFebos The DiFebos sell cuts of beef for the first time last year in partnership grow hay and other crops to feed through a small handful of local health with Pennsylvania Farm Bureau and the cattle over winter. They have food stores and sell quarter and half Heinz Endowments. implemented numerous conservation cows directly to customers. The meat practices over the years to prevent is processed by a nearby butcher. Rich The DiFebos received their award erosion and protect water quality and DiFebo said he didn’t set out to create a during the 2019 Pennsylvania Farm even reclaimed an old shale pit to be specialty product. But the explosion of Show and the next winners will be converted into pasture. recognized at the 2020 show coming up positivelypa.com 31
The DiFebo land, which had been a Christmas tree family—left to farm years before. Working with the right: Lynn, watershed, the DiFebos cleared the Dohl, Dane brush that had taken over the area to and Rich— convert it to grazing pasture. They pose with installed a solar powered well and their award watering system for the cattle. at the 2019 Pennsylvania The DiFebos use the site as part of Farm Show. their rotational grazing system and as a winter pasture. Students use the outdoor As a result, the farm has been able to and high schools and two elementary classroom and the public can come to support more cattle each year without schools, the site serves not only as use the trail system and learn about negatively affecting the health of the grazing pasture for the farm but also conservation. The National Park Service, land. And in addition to the improved an outdoor classroom and a public use which oversees the nearby Delaware production, having a healthy pasture has trail with educational displays about the Water Gap National Recreational Area, eliminated the need for fertilizer and conservation practices in place. installed educational signs along the trail herbicides, which would be expensive. explaining conservation benefits of the The school district land serves as the site, such as how clover in the pasture The DiFebos are particularly proud headwaters for three streams that lead draws nitrogen from the air, eliminating of the work they’ve done on a 65-acre to the Delaware River. For that reason, the need for fertilizer and reducing parcel they rent from the nearby Bangor the nearby Martins-Jacoby Watershed greenhouse gases. Area School District. Located adjacent Association recognized a particular to a campus that includes the middle need to protect water quality on the “We actually have documentation that we’re reducing greenhouse emissions PFinodsmitoirveealtyPa.com on that land by 92 tons per year,” Rich DiFebo said. More recipes More stories about Pennsylvania With their prize money from the food and culture Leopold Award, the DiFebos hope to More content, including online- work with the watershed association only videos and visual stories to identify more pieces of land that are critical for protecting water quality so they can expand their operation and implement similar conservation practices in those areas. They said it’s been rewarding to see many of their conservation projects come to fruition. “You feel like you accomplished something,” Dohl DiFebo said. Learn more harvesthomemeats.com 32 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020
Tater Talk By Lorraine Kobold Making Jacket Potatoes Being in the dark may be an idiom for being uninformed, but when it comes to Jacket potato is an English term for storing potatoes, the dark is the best place to be. a slow baking process that turns the outer skin of the potato into crunchy Many of us buy potatoes in the grocery store. They come in paper or plastic bags goodness. Fair warning—with a baking with plenty of air holes. We bring them home, they go under the sink, in a bin or time of two hours, this recipe is best in the garage and we forget about them until we go to retrieve them. If you’ve ever saved for a chilly weekend when you been disappointed to find sprouts shooting out of those once perfect spuds—or even have some extra time to cook. worse, green spots—let’s talk about what happened and what you can do. Here’s how to do it: When a potato is harvested, it goes into a state of dormancy. With the right Slice a cross shape about ¼-inch combination of warmth, moisture—and yes, light—the potato will start to sprout. It is thick into each potato. This helps simply trying to grow a new potato plant. release steam, make the interior more fluffy, and make it easier to slice into Store-bought potatoes usually go through very regulated processes and conditions, when hot. but are still sensitive to light and moisture. Below are a few tips for storing potatoes. Coat the skin with a high- temperature oil—such as corn, A Tricky Equation grapeseed or canola—to prevent smoking. Sprinkle with sea salt and High moisture, low temperature and airflow are pepper. Bake potatoes at 400 degrees for not conditions easily found in homes or garages. about two hours. The potatoes won’t burn at this temperature but the skins So the following criteria may present a challenge. will be almost cracker-like. After two hours are up, remove the 1. Avoid light. Try to block out as much as you potatoes and carefully cut deeper into the slices you made initially. Then put can, and choose a storage place where windows or the potatoes back in the oven for 10 more minutes. This helps to dry out doors are frequently opened. Don’t be tempted to the flesh further and makes it extra fluffy. Add butter and other toppings store them in the refrigerator, as doing so changes of choice. the sugar content and produces a chemical called acrylamide. Plus the light comes on when you open the door. 2. Moisture. This is tricky. Nobody wants mold. But if the storage spot is too dry, your stored potatoes will end up looking like raisins. Aim for 96 percent humidity. Author’s potato storage setup 3. Temperature. Ideal is 45 to 55 degrees. This could be a cool room in the house or a basement room. Don’t store potatoes near a warm vent or other heat source. 4. Airflow. There should be good airflow around the potatoes and a way for warm air to rise. You want to avoid condensation on your potatoes, that’s why there are holes in the packaging. Home-grown Storage When storing home-grown potatoes, look for racks or bins with airflow. If possible, arrange the potatoes so they don’t touch. One solution is to use a three-tiered wire rack, newspaper, a container of water for moisture and a space cleared in the closet or the coolest room in the house. As always, if you’re an amateur gardener, these processes are all about experimentation. And they increase your appreciation for what farmers do.
Garden Guidance Buying a New View PA Homestead Gardener My husband and I do not claim to be We thought we had the perfect hand in creating our new view. professional gardeners. What we know bucolic home—a view of woodlands, Our plan is a natural barrier. We have for certain is that there is nothing more deer and a farm field. Now, seven years rewarding than putting fresh vegetables, later, that view has been replaced by been working since day one with the fruits or herbs that you’ve grown with endless beeping and rock digging, jack development company. We requested a your own hands on your table. hammering, and large machines, which natural barrier, but just in case they don’t can effortlessly pull a 40-foot tree from come through, we’ve come up with our 34 Positively Pennsylvania Winter 2020 the ground. own plan. The fact that our area is growing at We’ve been researching color, tremendous leaps and bounds is good height, width and growth per year and for the community and most of us developing a plan for how far apart to can’t stop progress. We decided early plant, and particularly, where to plant to on that even though we couldn’t stop restore our view (not exactly as it used to development behind our home, we could be, but better than the photo above). be involved, stay informed, and have a Evergreens are our number one choice because they provide a colorful
Thuja Green Giant Arborvitae Features: Deer resistant, pest resistant, fast growing Exposure: Full to partial sun Average size: 30-40 feet high, 5-8 feet wide Growing zones: 5-9 Leyland Cypress Features: Rapid growing, large pyramidal form Exposure: Full sun Average size: 40-60 feet high, 20-25 feet wide Growing zones: 6-10 Nellie Stevens Holly Features: Tolerant of most soils, fast growing Exposure: Full to partial sun Average size: 15-25 feet tall, 10-12 feet wide Growing zones: 6-9 barrier in the winter, and many of United States Postal Service, PS Form 3526, 2019 Statement of Ownership, Management & Circulation the varieties grow much faster than deciduous trees. I’ve listed some of the 1. Publication Title: Positively PA Avg # copies #cc Single Issue well-performing varieties that we’ve 2. Publication #: 024-917 researched and their attributes. 3. Filing Date: Preceding 12 Months Near Filing Date 4. Issue Frequency: 9/27//2019 We’ve been canvassing garden 5. #Issues Published Annually: Bi-monthly 15. Extent of Circulation: centers for sales. If you’re not ready to 6. Annual Subscription Price: plant when you buy, the trees can be 7. Mailing Address of Publication: 6 a. Total # Copies (net press run) 36,065 21,218 temporarily planted somewhere in your $3.00 yard and moved when the time is right, b. Paid Circulation sort of like your own mini nursery. 1. Mailed outside-county paid subscriptions 32,851 30,535 Learn more: 2. Mailed in-county paid subscriptions 0 0 www.fast-growing-trees.com 510 So. 31st Street, Camp Hill, PA 17011 3. Paid Distribution Outside the Mails 0 0 County: Cumberland 4. Paid Disbribution by Other Classes of Mail 0 0 Contact Person: Lorraine Kobold c. Total Paid Distribution 32,851 30,535 Telephone: 717-731-3584 d. Free or nominal rate distribution 8. Mailing Address of HQ: 1. Free or nominal rate outside-county 2,813 462 510 So. 31st Street, Camp Hill, PA 17011 2. Free or nominal rate in-county 0 0 9. Full Names and Mailing Addresses of Publisher 3. Free or nominal rate at other classes 29 20 (Joel Rotz), Editor (Liam Migdail), and Managing 4. Free or nominal rate outside the mail 218 54 Editor(n/a): 510 So. 31st Street, Camp Hill, PA 17011 e. Total free or nominal rate distribution 3,060 536 10. Owner: PA Farm Bureau, 510 So. 31st Street, f. Total Distribution 35,911 31,071 Camp Hill, PA 17011 g. Copies Not Distributed 154 147 11. Known Bondholders, Mortgagees, and Other h. Total 36,065 31,218 Security Holders Owning or Holding 1 Percent or 16. Electronic Copy Circulation More of Total Amount of Bonds, Mortgages, or a. Paid Electronic Copies 0 0 Other Securities: None b. Total Paid Print Copies + Paid Electronic Copies 32,581 30,535 12. Tax Status: Has not changed during preceding 12 months c. Total Print Distribution + Paid Electronic Copies 35,911 31,071 13. Publication Title: Positively Pennsylvania d. Percent Paid (Print + Electronic) 91.5% 97.8% 14. Issue Date for Circ Data: Winter 2020 17. Publication of Statement of Ownership required 18. Signed by Joel Rotz, Publisher, Date September 27, 2019 positivelypa.com 35
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Winter 2020 REVOLUTIONIZING MOZZARELLA SCRATCH CAFÉ KEEPS IT LOCAL Stone-Ground Goodness Artisan millers deliver a taste of history Published exclusively for Pennsylvania Farm Bureau members
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