Be sure to include some of these delicious, locally grown or produced goodies in your holiday feast.
by Rachel Turner Williams
Luckily for us, even our Thanksgiving turkey can be sourced locally. Sisters’ Ridge Farm out of Calpella has been producing certified organic, pastureraised turkeys for several years now. The white broadbreasted turkeys are processed on the farm and will be ready for pick-up in November. To arrange an order, contact Jenness Hartley at (707) 272-0172 or visit their Facebook page (www.facebook.com/farmsistersridge/). Likewise, first-generation farm Mendocino Meats will be raising and processing white broad-breasted turkeys using organic feed at Heart Arrow Ranch near Redwood Valley. For those who prefer a holiday ham for their special meal, those can be ordered through Mendocino Meats with at least one month advance notice. Contact them via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (707) 272-5477.
What would the bird be without all that glorious stuffing? Just in time for the holidays, Fort Bragg Bakery, a local artisan bread company, puts out croutons made from their natural, organic levain sourdough breads. The croutons can be found seasonally at Harvest Market, Lemons, Anderson Valley Market, Purity Supermarket, Mariposa Market, and other local stores. More at www. fortbraggbakery.com. Alternatively, try making your own by getting a fresh loaf from your favorite local bakery—we recommend Schat’s for inland dwellers—slice it up, dry it either overnight or in a warm oven, then cut into cubes and sauté in a pan with butter and a little garlic.
Looking to round out your table with some tasty, locally-grown sides? Natural Products of Boonville (707-684-0182) is growing a variety of potatoes and purple sweet potatoes for the season. If you are hoping to include mushrooms in your feast, they also have Lion’s Manes and sometimes shiitakes. The Forest People (707-489-5034) also have oyster mushrooms for sale. For a lovely touch of holiday tradition, be sure to include Zeni Ranch (707-684- 6892) chestnuts in your meal. The ranch also hopes to produce their first batch of chestnut honey this year, which could be a wonderful addition to your yams or desserts.
What Thanksgiving would be complete without some delicious, seasonal pies? If you are looking to make your pies from scratch, pumpkins and winter squash are available locally through Blue Meadow Farm, Brock Farms, Anderson Valley Community Farm, and Yokayo Farm. Apples for pies can also be sourced locally through The Apple Farm (707-895-2333) or Gowan’s Oak Tree (707-895-3353). If you are looking to take a delicious shortcut, look no further than Kemmy’s Pies, a local pie company out of Willits that offers handmade holiday pies ranging from classic pumpkin, pecan, and apple, to specialty pies such as bourbon sweet potato or saged mushroom. Look for them at local markets throughout the county or contact them at Kemmyspies@gmail.com to place an order.
You can be sure to savor the season all month long with these special local treats! Cowlick’s Ice Cream (www.cowlicksicecream.com) in Fort Bragg offers special handmade flavors during the holidays, including pumpkin, cinnamon, and chai. Enjoy deliciously creamy pumpkin butter from Carol Hall’s Hot Pepper Jelly Company (www. hotpepperjelly.com) or pop in to The North Coast Brewing Company (www.northcoastbrewing.com) to taste their soured seasonal Cranberry-Quince autumn brew.
Main photo: Sisters’ Ridge Farm
Rachel Williams lives in Boonville where she is active in the food shed, and avid gardener, and Undergoing online training in nutrition.