Archive | Fall 2012

LIQUID ASSETS: From the ground up


Vineyard relies on soil and family
to make uniquely Nebraska
 wines
By Matt Low
Photography by Stephanie Nahas

For those who are passionate about wine, few words carry more significance than terroir. At its most basic meaning, terroir (pronounced “ter-war”) is the French word for soil.  In winemaking, it is the go-to term for describing a vast number of complex factors influencing the ability to grow specific types of grapes in precise locations.

As Brian J. Sommers puts it, terroir “is used to describe all the local features of environment and society that have an effect on wine.” Sommers’ text The Geography of Wine (2008) is a book-length study of the importance of various local features—microclimate, biogeography, urbanization and so on—that influence winemaking and grape-growing. Terroir stands out as the most important concept to understand regarding how the glass of wine you’re drinking came to be.

As more and more consumers use location as a criterion for the foods and beverages they purchase, one could argue that wine has the most to offer those fully invested in the local food movement.  Buying a head of lettuce or side of beef from a farmer or rancher in a neighboring town or … Read More

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EDIBLE AG: Grain Place Foods Organic Grain Pioneers


By Summer Miller
Photography by Dana Damewood

Inside the steel walls of an inconspicuous warehouse is the story of the Vetter family, who dedicated themselves to organic farming and manufacturing long before the word “organic” meant much to anyone.

The Vetter family business started as a small family farm called TheGrain Place, and has blossomed into a regional, national and international organic grain, legume and seed processing facility known as Grain Place Foods. It was one of the first in the region to serve small-scale organic growers by providing quality processing and distribution for organic whole grains. InNebraskaalone, it processes grains from 46 growers in 27 counties.

The road to this type of agriculture was slow, steady and purposeful.  It began in the 1940s when Don Vetter was one of the first farmers inMarquette,Nebraskato use post-World War II chemical farming practices. Enticed by the prospect of high yields and stable growth, he accepted this new modern-farming approach as the best way to manage and maintain the family farm. Within five years his tone changed, and by 1953 Don became one of the earliest adopters of organic farming practices despite the harsh scrutiny of his peers.

“My dad has always been … Read More

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IN SEASON FALL 2012

The change in seasons is marked by crisp autumn air and the glorious color in the leaves. Bumper crops of squash, apples and sweet potatoes form the basis of warm and satisfying, hearty meals.

FRUITS

Apples
Pears

HERBS & GREENS

Garlic
Kale
Lettuce: Various
Spinach
Various Herbs

MEAT & DAIRY

Beef
Bison
Cheese: Artisan and Farmstead
Chicken
Eggs
Lamb
Milk
Pork
Turkey

OTHER

Breads and Pastries
Granola and Grains
Honey
Jams and Jellies
Jerky

VEGETABLES

Beets
Broccoli
Brussels sprouts
Cabbage
Carrots
Cauliflower
Kohlrabi
Onions
Parsnips
Peppers
Potatoes
Pumpkins
Radishes
Shallots
Squash: Summer
Squash: Winter
Sweet Corn
Sweet Potato
Tomatoes: Greenhouse
Turnips
Yam
Zucchini

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spillFall12newFarm

SPILLING THE BEANS FALL 2012

CAST-OFF PLANTS FIND NEW HOMES

Benson Plant Rescue

Built in the mid-1970s and originally used as a plant nursery, the barn-like building near73rd StreetandMaple Roadreturned to its roots this summer when it became the new home for the Benson Plant Rescue.

The nonprofit organization saves damaged, overstocked and endof-season plants from many sources, including big-box stores, local nurseries and area gardeners looking to thin or change their gardens. The rescued perennials, grasses, trees and houseplants are sold to the public at affordable rates, with the proceeds benefiting the Omaha Public Library. Annual flowering plants and vegetables are given away for free, creating many opportunities for local fresh food and beauty.

It was founded in 1999 by Dr. David J. Hibler, Sr., who is known as “Dr. D,” and his wife, Judith. Sales from the plant rescue have raised over $30,000 for the library, which uses the funds to purchase children’s books and computers. Benson Plant Rescue is located at7230 Maple Street, and is open May through October on Fridays from 5pm–8pm and on Saturdays from 9am–noon. You can follow it on Facebook at Benson Plant Rescue, on Twitter and on the web at BensonPlantRescue.org.

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FOOD FOR THOUGHT FALL 2012

Can it be harvest time already? The growing season started early, the summer heat arrived early— and some would say never left—and the lack of rain, well I don’t want to wish time away, but it has been a challenging summer. When I reflect on this growing season, one word comes to mind: resilient.

After withstanding the hot and dry summer months—most of us in the cool confines of our air-conditioned homes—we all should have a much greater appreciation for the diligence on the part of our local farmers to grow food. The time and physical demands required during the growing season are intense on their own. Add in extreme heat and couple that with a drought, and the result is even more arduous work at a higher cost to bring bounty to our tables.

If you spent time working in your lawn or garden, you can relate to the extra work and expense involved to water the parched land. Yet the weeds didn’t seem to miss a beat. They were extra-hearty and strong with or without any of this precious commodity.

Yes, our local growers were resilient, and their ability to withstand the adversity of this summer and to … Read More

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FALL 2012 TABLE OF CONTENTS

2 FOOD FOR THOUGHT
5 EDIBLE EVENTS
6 SPILLING THE BEANS
More in Store for You Neighborhood Café and Coffee Shop
New Farm Store
10 IN SEASON AND ON THE PLATE
12 EDIBLE AG
Grain Place Foods
14 LIQUID ASSETS
From the Ground Up
16 EDIBLE INSPIRATION
The Way to Enjoy Food and Life—A Day at Pin Oak Place
31 ADVERTISER DIRECTORY
32 THE LAST BITE
A New Direction
33 FARMERS’ MARKETS
  FEATURES
  APPLES OF YESTERYEAR
Preservation Orchard at Arbor Day Farm
  WINTER IS COMING!
How to Eat Local All Year Long
 

RECIPES

Stuffed Squash

Zucchini and Onions

Apple Slaw with Poppy Seed Dressing

Cranberry Apple Muffins

Easy Apple Cider

Fall Hummus

 

ON THE COVER
A basket of orchard apples fromthe Preservation Orchard at Arbor Day Farm in Nebraska City, Nebraska. Cover photo is by Alison Bickel. Other photos on this page: “Gourds” by Carole Topalian, “Goat” by Kate White,“Apples” by Alison Bickel, “Fall Hummus” by Melissa Cole.

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