The joy of new food

One of the rotations for the workers of the Farmy is the Kitchen Mama day.  (Some of the other responsibilities are,  Swine Herd, Water Boy, Chicken Handler, Milk Maid, Gardener, etc)  With the Kitchen Mama (gender has no influence here, whether woman or man they are Kitchen Mama): for a whole day one worker takes over the kitchen, feeds everyone, cleans, bakes and cooks and I am released to the gardens and the fields.  Much thought is put into what they are going to cook and invariably they will call their Mama or Grandma and find the exact recipe for a favourite food the family has been making for years then make it for our big table of hungry people. This is why I LOVE my Kitchen Mamas.  I learn all about food.

matzah balls

Last night Sammy made  Matzah Balls Soup and Challah bread.  In Sammy’s family The Matzah Ball Soup is usually served at Passover and Rosh Hashanah (and for a special treat at the farmy).  The Challah bread is divine. Sweet and light. Next time she will make it with raisins.  We are so spoiled.

The other thing that often happens is that the mothers and grandmothers are invited into my kitchen via startling advances in technology. With Facetime they can even look at the soup bubbling and give pertinent tips. I remember Inaki and I taking a video of my first croqueta mixture cooking and sending it to his sister in Basque Country via whatsapp (a free app – FREE!) to check for consistency.

And the best bit is that Sammie’s trendy Granny and her Mum took photos of their original recipes with their cameras and sent those to us too.

Matzo balls:


Challah bread:


Spoilt for food we are.

The fields are planted. Soybeans this year.  All GM of course. This is why I cannot call myself organic.


But these machines are magnificent in a scary kind of way, if they had brains they would take over the world.  No need for people in these fields.  The tractors are run by a GPS that tells the driver when to turn and how far. All kinds of fancy-ness.


One perfect peachick has survived the hatching process. I think we have another Geraldine in the making! I am not hatching any more eggs until I can find out what has gone wrong with my incubator. This is twice in a row that we have had massive failures.  Can a thermometer be wrong? Such a disappointment. I will think on it.

I hope you have a lovely day.

Love celi



36 Comments on “The joy of new food

  1. for some reason incubaters only good for 2 or 3 years, then low hatch rates happen

    if it is replaceable, try a new thermostat,
    i just buy new cheep styrofoam incubater, with fan every 2-3 years.
    they have 100% hatch rate when new.

    i found when done for year, clean really good,, set in sun all day to dry out, store in sealed garbage bag till next year

    • Look at that! Who knew? So good of you to share Ron. I love the sharing of info between us. It’s almost like everyone knows a little piece of the puzzle. 😀

  2. Yum, challah! And chicken soup with matzo balls. You should have saved it for Friday evening… Is she going to be Kitchen Mama then too? Make sure she gives you latkes and applesauce one day, maybe cholent too. Memorable food from my Ashkenazi bloodline 🙂

  3. Lovely food. Thank you for sharing the recipes. You are lucky with your helpers and their kin.

    Those large machines are my bêtes noires: they cost obscene amounts of money, compact the soil to the detriment of worms, require hedgerows to be torn out, thus depriving whole ecosystems of habitat, clog our narrow country roads dangerously and they don’t even poo to make fertiliser… I could go on, but it’s getting boring.

    Lots of love,
    ViV xox

  4. I am going to have to try the Challah myself! It looks and sounds delicious, and it’s the perfect opportunity to teach my kids about the traditions of other religions. Food is such a great way to get to know others!

  5. Challah bread, is a new one for me. I might make it this afternoon. If I don’t have raisins, I know I have dried cranberries. Looking forward to dinner already!

  6. Technology is a blessing, and a curse at times. We can do so much with it.

    I like making bread. Last week, we watched a Netflix program called Cooked by Michael Pollan. The episode featured making bread and how low tech and basic it is as a food. I encourage all your readers to watch the four episodes.

    The planter is a long way from what my dad used to put in 4 rows at a time. He had to actually drive the tractor. 🙂 As for the GM, I am good with that. I know many people aren’t. Big arguments can ensue over the issue. I don’t intend to start any here.

    • It is perfectly ok to express an opinion in the Lounge of Comments, Jim. If we do not agree we will be silent. The Fellowship respects others opinions and never ever attacks or argues just because they don’t agree. Those threads are destructive to relationships. And the farm is all about relationships. In fact if I even get a whiff of bad manners I will delete the bad mannered comment. We are gentle here. That is how we learn. By listening and reading. Not always agreeing but allowing a person to feel safe enough to speak. Many thanks for giving me the opportunity to clarify that for everyone. Have a gorgeous day. We bake bread here three or four times a week depending on numbers – I am just about to cook another sourdough. It is such a staple in this busy kitchen! c

  7. Love the header photo of the little pigs they look almost indigo.

  8. ‘Kitchen Mama’ is such a cool concept, and seems it’s been working great! I often wondered how you got your men into the kitchen, as I recall Fedd, as well as Inaki, creating good stuff in there… but I guess if it’s just one of the expected chores then makes sense.
    Sad news about the incubating of eggs; hope you are able to find the solution. Hope you have a lovely day too. ~ Mame 🙂

  9. Is the soy yours or the neighbors? I wish I could visit the Farmy sometime. I would cook you my mother’s Paprikash and perhaps some Fry Bread. Good food brings people together. 🙂

  10. Challah bread looks delicious. I was just coming right with sourdough bread when the temperature dropped and I’m back to square one … sigh. I am still fascinated by the size and operation of that huge machine, just wish it was planting organic seeds with real compost. Laura

  11. Sometimes I just sit and marvel at the wonders we have inside our phones and computers. You can talk or email or send pictures or just play a game or trade recipe advice with anyone anywhere.

    50 years ago my mother would have hesitated to call her mother from Puerto Rico to Wisconsin except for an emergency or major event. Certainly she would not have called for recipe advice.
    Now we all share so much. It’s a magic we got used to so easily. Its good to remember sometimes that it’s a wonder.

  12. I have always made the soup from a mix and everyone I serve it to, loves it. I add pieces of chicken, usually some leftover in the freezer and wide egg noodles. And it does cure what ails you. I also load everything with garlic for a little extra zing and health benefit. Even my German mother loved it when I introduced her to it. I have never made the bread but it looks yummy. I haven’t made bread in ages but if someone made it for me, I might be persuaded to partake. 🙂 As for the GM beans. It’s a sad state of affairs but the make enough money to keep the rest of the farm alive. There are not a lot of options out there anymore. A girls gotta do what a girls gotta do. That’s what we grew on our farm before we sold it. Some years the money just paid the taxes.

    • This is not my land – we only own 5 acres – the fields you see belong to johns uncle and his mother – if we owned it there would be some incredibly different planting going on!

      • Ah, now I do understand. I could not convince my last husband to do things differently so I jumped at the chance to sell the farm he never even wanted to visit. It was too hard to not have any say.

  13. Challah is delicious….and Hurray for that Kitchen Mama!

  14. I am of mixed minds about GM but the big equipment brought to mind a neighbor’s comment that made me laugh. Seems his then 16 yr old son was great friends with the 16 yr old son of the dairy farmer down our road. One day we observed the two of them tooling down the road in a giant tractor. That’s when my neighbor commented how he hesitated to let him drive his 30k car and there they go in a 150k tractor!

  15. I love that one of the duties of workers is kitchen duty for a day. How rewarding that is for all involved and what a great way to blend cultures over food.

  16. What a lot going on!! And isn’t it amazing the things we can do today with all that ‘new fangled technology’?! I love that you posted both recipes. I’ve always wanted to make Challah bread and it’s great that this recipe doesn’t take as much time as usual!! ; o )

  17. I can’t wait for Rosh Hashanah to eat some Matzah balls! This post reminds me of home

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