Thursday, June 22, 2006

Spring 2006 Newsletter

Vancalcar Acres
Spring 2006 newsletter
392 Elwood rd Ft. Plain, NY 13339

Well, it has been an amazing spring here. It’s the 1st of June, and the first chance we’ve had to sit down since March! Our ‘regularly scheduled’ lambing season started off with a bang. A week before our planned due date, a yearling gave us a set of quads. Several days later, lambs started appearing like popcorn all over the pasture, to the tune of close to 330 lambs, out skipping around the fields today.

Fiber: Eric was injured earlier this spring, and was unable to shear until just recently. Those of you waiting for your fleece or yarn from your Sheep Rental, he has begun shearing, and we’re working on them for you! I’ll keep you posted. We’re working on lots of new roving and blends, as well as hand-dyed variegated yarns. Look for them on the website in July.

Grassfed Meats:
Pork and Lamb currently available by the cut.
Taking reservations on ½ or whole pigs, as well as 40-50lb pork packages including a variety of cuts, bacon and sausage.
Taking reservations on freezer lambs as well, availability beginning late summer.
Taking reservations on ground beef packs in 10, 25 and 40lb sets. **This is not typical ‘trim’ ground beef! We’re taking one whole beef calf and making ground beef and some beef jerky. This means the ground beef will be made from cuts like filet mignon and T-Bone steaks! Very lean

Poultry: Still working this out, since shearing is now a priority, we will probably put this off until later this summer.
Pelts: Currently sold out again. More on the way to the tanner, let me know if your interested, I will contact you when they come back.

Well, that’s all for now! Thanks so much for letting us keep in touch with you,
Eric, Jennifer, Nora & the animals.


Baked lamb shanks over rice

Any number of lamb shanks
Paul Newman’s Balsamic Vinaigrette Salad Dressing
1 can Diced Tomatoes in water, not tomato juice/sauce
Green beans (optional)
Cinnamon, salt, pepper.
Orzo pasta
Chicken bouillon
Marinate shanks in salad dressing 30min to an hour. Transfer to baking dish, add tomatoes with no water removed and green beans to suit your appetite. Arrange shanks so tomatoes are comfortably around/on them, sprinkle liberally with cinnamon, and lightly with salt and pepper. Cover and bake at 300 degrees until meat falls off bone, 2 hours works great for us.
Rice: melt 3tbsp butter in rice cooking pan on medium low (3-4 on my stove). Add ¼ cup orzo pasta to butter, mix with butter, stir frequently as the orzo browns. While orzo is browning, add 1 cube all natural chicken bouillon to 1 ¾ cup very hot water and dissolve. Once orzo is browned, add water, one cup of rice, and liberal dashes of cinnamon. **Be careful adding bouillon stock! Butter spatters when you add water! Turn heat to med.high, bring to simmer. Stir, cover and turn to low. Cook rice as usual, until done. Takes 20 minutes here for us.
Serve shanks with tomatoes & green beans on bed of rice. A perfect side dish would be pita bread, humus and tabouli salad available from some deli markets, and middle eastern restaurants for take out, if you don’t want to make it yourself.