Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Farmer's Market News

Well, we just became a "certified grower" so now we can sell our eggs independently at farmers markets around the north state! The folks at the Glenn County Ag Department were very helpful and gave me lots of wonderful advice for the novice egg seller. If you ever have occasion to go there ask for Jean she is super!

I tried the market in Colusa Monday night. Although it was a bit of a slow evening, heck it was only a 102 degrees in the shade :-), I managed to sell all but a dozen of our eggs. It is a wonderful market and if you ever are in Colusa County, stop by. It is on Monday evenings from 5-8 p.m. near the airport.

My dear friend Paula from Windmill Farm in Gridley has graciously allowed me to share her stall at the farmers markets. Windmill Farm produces fabulous vegetables, flowers, and fruit and it is nice to present a wide array of products, even if I just do the eggs! Check out Windmill Farm's blog link on this site. Paula always has inventive and beautiful ways to display her bounty so I am very fortunate to be working with her. Right now she has fabulous peaches, cantalope and watermellon that are just yummy! Not to mention tomatoes, basil to die for and lots of other fresh veggies. Pumpkins will be coming soon in time for fall. It looks like we may do Colusa again this coming Monday so look for us if you are in the area. If you are not in the area, contact Windmill farm or us at Happy Chick Farm to purchase fabulous farm fresh delights!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Egg recipes

Love Eggs?

Here is a great recipe from Jimmy Dean for a breakfast or brunch cassarole. I think it would be good anytime and it is super for pot luck offering! I have modified the receipe a bit and the great thing is it can be assembled and chilled up to 12 hours before baking. Makes 6 servings.

1 lb sausage (any kind you like)

10 eggs lightly beaten

3 cups milk

2 tsp. dried mustard

1 tsp salt

6 cups cubed bread (great way to use up bread that is stale)

2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese (or more to taste)

1/2 tsp. black pepper

1/2 cup sliced mushrooms (optional)

1 chopped onion

1 chopped bell pepper

1/2 cup chopped celery (optional)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. In a large skillet cook sausage, onion, bell pepper and other veggies over medium high heat stirring frequently until thoroughly cooked and non longer pink. In a large mixing bowl, combine eggs, milk, mustard and salt; stir well. In another bowl with the bread in it, stir in sausage and vegetable mixture and 3/4 of the cheese. Distribute evenly in a buttered 9 x 13" baking dish. Pour egg mixture evely over casserole. Top with remaining cheese. Bake uncovered for 55-60 minutes or until eggs are set. Tent with foil if top begins to brown too quickly.

Got a LOT of Zucchini?

Here is a receipe for you! while it only uses one egg, it is a yummy way to use zucchini from your garden. This zucchini cassarole is an old fire house receipe from when my dad served with the Los Angeles fire department:

1 lb zucchini, grated
1 bunch chopped green onion
1 cup saltine cracker crumbs
1egg beaten
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup melted butter
1 cup grated Jack Cheese (or more to taste)

Pre heat oven to 350 degrees F. Grate zucchini and add onion, crumbs, seasonings, and butter. Fold in beaten egg. Place in a buttered baking dish. You can use up to a 9 x 13" pan but I prefer a smaller one such as a souffle dish. Top with grated cheese. Bake for 35-40 minutes.

The Story of Happy Chick Farm

Welcome to our blog! We hope you will find the information useful and that you will consider purchasing our farm fresh eggs. Since one of the most important things about food is knowing its source, we would like to tell you a bit about our farm and how we got started.

Happy Chick Farm became a business just this year. We have always raised chickens, but just recently decided to sell them. If you have not done so already, please read our pledge to our customers on this page, as it will tell you in depth what our farm is all about. In a nutshell, we are "no kill" and raise cage free, free roaming, well cared for chickens. In return, we get fantastic, beautiful, fresh eggs from our "girls".

Gene was raised on raised on a farm in the south, and I grew up a city girl in southern California. We came to Orland for a job opportunity for me, and fell in love with the area. We purchased our home on 7 1/2 acres 10 years ago. Both of us have always loved animals, but living the city life where you can't afford a home, much less one with room for a farm type animal was impossible. Not only did our move up north provide me with a wonderful job, it provided us with the opportunity to own a home with some acreage! First came then chickens and then we got involved in small animal and farm animal rescue. Needless to say we have several of each. The farm animals consisting of goats, miniture donkeys, horses, geese, a former 4H sheep and a pot bellied pig, are all what they say up here "hay burners" or "pasture pals". In other words, they eat a lot and don't do much else. But that is a story for another posting.

As our small chicken flock grew, we started giving our eggs to family, neighbors, friends and co-workers. As the demand for our eggs grew, we started raising more chickens. People really liked the taste of a farm fresh egg which you can't get from store bought eggs. This year Gene and I are retiring, that is from our "regular" jobs, and have decided to make our eggs available to local consumers. I have started selling them at small local farmers markets and they have sold out each time. Right now the laying flock is small but our new, larger flock should be laying in September/October and production will go up considerably.

So if you are interested in trying our fresh eggs please call us 530-865-7203 or email us and we would be happy to help you. We know you won't go back to store bought eggs once you try a few from Happy Chick Farm!

In future blogs we will keep you posted on the progress of our flock and farm, provide you with some great egg recipes, and information regarding raising chickens and what that means to you as a consumer.