A couple weeks ago I got the opportunity to visit Oak Hill Farm up in Sonoma. It was the perfect way to spend a summer day. The tour was lead by a real life farmer who gave us insight into what life is like on a farm. It does not seem easy. Since I am in no way a morning person, I don’t think I am cut out for any kind of job that you have to be at work before sunrise.
But I do enjoy eating that stuff that comes from farms. The farm itself is over 700 acres but only 25 of those are farmed. The rest has been given to the Sonoma Land Trust – which means that the farm is surrounded by nothing but open land and it intends to stay that way. It is truly beautiful up there. The farm is actually next door to where Luke and I got married, so it made the trip extra special. I have always been fascinated to learn how things are grown and what they look like before they hit the stores. Almonds are one of those foods. Did you know they grew on trees in furry little pods? I did not. (See below for a pic)
Oak Hill is an organic farm that produces all kinds of vegetables from kale to tomatoes to artichokes, as well as fruits, herbs and flowers. They also have a farm shop on the property you can swing by and pick up flowers or produce if you ever find yourself up that way.
Here are some pics from the day.
Oak Hill Farm also gave us a recipe for a kale salad. Check it out, I had never eaten kumquats before (have you?) and they are actually pretty delicious. Don’t need to peel them like and orange, rather eat the whole thing.
Kale and Kumquat Salad
- Large head of kale
- 1 cup kumquats, cut into thin rounds, seeded
- 3 tablespoons of white wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon minced shallot
- 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
- 1 1/2 teaspoon honey
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- chopped chives
- 3 tablespoons roasted salted shelled pumpkin seeds
Place kale and kumquats into a large bowl. In another bowl, mix together vinegar, shallot, honey, mustard and oil. Add to salad and toss to evenly coat. Let salad sit at room temperature for 20 minutes to let the vinaigrette soften the kale.
Add more vinaigrette, if desired. Season to taste with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Transfer to a serving bowl and scatter chives and, for a little crunch, 3 tablespoons roasted salted shelled pumpkin seeds (pepitas) over.