Washington Grown Season 7 Episode 8 “Small Farms”

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Department of Agriculture’s Office of the State
Aquaculture Coordinator, supporting the viability
and vitality of Washington agriculture. Hi everyone, I’m Kristi Gorenson
and welcome to Washington Grown. Farms come in all shapes and
sizes here in Washington state, from thousands of acres to
this small but productive farm on just about two acres. Today, we are celebrating
Washington’s small farms. We’ll visit Twin Brook Creamery,
a dairy that works hard to keep the water around it
crystal clear. This is full of poo? Yes. Okay. Nutrients. Nutrients. There you go. And Val is visiting
Local Roots Farm, a small farm that grows
just about everything. Oh my gosh, that just tastes,
Mmm. And I’ll cook collard greens
at Island Soul, where there’s something
for just about everybody. We always get
that one person, Well, you know,
I’m a vegetarian. Gotcha covered. I’m vegan. Gotcha covered. I’m a meat eater. Really gotcha covered.
Yes, yes. All this and more,
today on Washington Grown. Buon appetito! Buon appetito! There are no fingers in there. No fingers in it
and they still look green. This is happy food right here. That is heaven on a fork. Look at that smile. Oh, I’ve never done that before. Got my hard hat on. Let’s go. Today, we’re visiting
Island Soul, where great food
and incredible rum are all part of an authentic
island experience. It’s a nice, cool,
just relaxing atmosphere. And it just kinda takes you
back to Jamaica. Laid back atmosphere,
coupled with the rum, the Caribbean food. We try to make it feel like
you’re somewhere else. You’re not in Seattle when
you walk into our restaurant, you’re somewhere in the islands. Owner Theo Martin wanted to
create a place that combines the island experience
with traditional soul food. Trendy looking, you know, but still capturing
the colors of Jamaica. When they first hear
the word Island Soul, they want to know is,
are we Hawaiian. No, no, we’re a Caribbean
and soul food restaurant. The first thing they say,
Do you do jerk? Yes, man, we do jerk. We do oxtail,
we do curried goat. The curried chicken
is delicious. Definitely spicy. I keep saying that
because I’m sweating. There’s a lot of good rum
in Washington. There’s a lot of good rum,
should I say, around the world. But our goal
was to have a selection that would blow your mind. Any rum based cocktail here
is great. Yes, lots of rum. It’s a fun menu. Something for everybody. Something for everybody.
Something for everybody. Yes. You could go that extra mile,
you know, of being a little extra full
just to eat it all. Later in the show,
Theo and I will be cooking up some of Island Soul’s
famous collard greens. To your health,
to your health. To your health. Island Soul. Today, Val’s in
the Snoqualmie River Valley visiting Local Roots Farm. Here, owner Jason Salvo
grows just about everything. It’s a beautiful spot here. Tell me about some of the things
that you’re growing around us. Yeah, so we’re a
diversified vegetable farm. We grow just about
everything you can think of from arugula to zucchini. Our sort of primary sales outlet
is through a CSA, a Community Supported
Agriculture subscription program Jason explained that they have
over 300 members in their CSA. They also sell their produce to numerous restaurants
in the Seattle area, and they have an honor system
farm stand that’s stocked daily. This is all still
uncontrolled flood plain. I think is was homesteaded
starting in like the 1860’s at which point the homesteaders
cut down massive cedar trees like this, which is astonishing
to think about. All they wanted to do
was get rid of it so they could turn this
into farmland. Wow, and that they did. That they did. So this is where things
get started. This is beautiful. So we’ve got more
baby lettuce, right here, and then we’ve got
a whole bunch of chicories. So chicories
are our signature crop, Okay. specifically radicchio, which is
an Italian lettuce-like plant. It’s the same general family
as lettuce, but it’s a…they’re more
bitter, they’re more cold-hearty and they’re just
a really great crop. Jason said that lettuce
is their biggest crop. They plant 4,000 heads
of lettuce a week. I think the thing that is
the most interesting about it is that it is profoundly,
existentially real. Every farm is so different. I wouldn’t want to compare our
farm to any others necessarily. I would say, you know, there’s a lot more diversity
on our farm. We grow 50 different varieties
of things, which means, you know, a lot of times
when we’re struggling with, you know, managing our crew, or sort of, you know, putting
all of the like pieces together in a way that makes sense, I’m like, wouldn’t it be nice
if we just grew one thing? And so I think, you know, a lot of larger scale farms do
tend to focus on one or three, or fewer crops, which is
you know, great. I don’t,
like no judgement on my part. For us, we choose to go with a
more like, diversity of crops. Partially because we love
to eat a lot of the stuff. You know, I think every time we talk about
cutting something out, I’m like, oh, I’d be really sad if I wasn’t
growing and harvesting that. Jason took me over
to his lettuce patch to show me a popular hybrid
he grows that’s a mix of butter lettuce
and romaine. That just looks delicious. It is. Eat it right now. I just want to munch it
right now. Oh,
I’ve never done that before. It’s sweet, right? Oh, oh my gosh
that just tastes, mmm. Thank you so much.
This was just wonderful. We really appreciate your time
during this very busy season. Hey, let’s go! Do you like spicy food?
If the answer is yes, then Spokane’s 3 Ninjas
is the food truck for you. Today, we’re talking with
co-owner Steven Kitchens to see what gives their
fish tacos that special kick. So tell me about 3 Ninjas,
where did that come from? We are food assassins
when it comes down to it, so. One of the things
we like to do is support
every farmer’s market we go to. Supporting the local farms is, A, super sustainable
and super smart. So, the cabbage
that we’re able to get that goes in our fish tacos
is fantastic. One of the things I noticed
about your fish tacos is, they got quite
a Hispanic flare to them. Basically a lot of things that
say, I’m spicy and delicious. Is that right? Absolutely. The fish tacos are delicious. We actually own
a hot sauce company as well, with three different hot sauces,
so it’s gonna be fun, man. We’ll warm you up
before we leave, I promise. Hey, I’m okay with that. Now it’s time
to put the spice to the test. Okay, here we go. So the Smokey Jalapeño
is what’s on there, and that is our flagship sauce
that we use. It’s got
a good amount of heat without coming in there
and kicking your butt. And so Renee,
I hear you enjoy fish tacos. I do, I like them a lot. Fish tacos are my to-go food. Do you like spicy food? No. No! You enjoy a little spice,
right? Yes. I’m Hispanic,
so I love tacos. Wait a minute!
And you don’t like spicy? That’s okay,
I’m the same way. So Jen, we’re gonna add a little
Smokey Jalapeño pepper sauce, just to give you a little
extra heat, a little smoke, Okay. So go ahead and give that a bite
and let me know what you think. I like the smokey. That was a good sauce choice,
thank you. Flavorful, smokey, amazing. So you’d order this again? I’d bring a date here. I’m gonna go get some water now.
Bye. How long does it take to grow
fully mature collard greens? We’ll have the answer
after the break. Coming up, I’m in the kitchen
at Island Soul, serving up
some Caribbean collard greens. Get that boiling and we talk
for the next 45 minutes. Nice.
We’ll go have some rum. There you go.
Oh, I have lots of that. And we’re in The Kitchen
at Second Harvest trying out some
Portuguese Kale soup. To grow fully mature collard
greens, it takes about 65 days. 30 days here in the greenhouse
and another 30-45 days in the field
before we start harvesting. We’re back at Island Soul, where fresh food, delicious rum
and a Caribbean atmosphere combine to make
a true island experience. It just kinda takes you back
to Jamaica. Definitely laid back,
very chill, kinda islandy Caribbean vibe. Yeah, any rum based cocktail
here is great. Yes, lots of rum. It’s a fun menu. Something for everybody.
Something for everybody. Owner Theo Martin works hard to make sure that no matter what
you eat, you’ll find a home here at Island Soul. We always get that one person, Well, you know, I’m a
vegetarian. Gotcha covered. I’m vegan. Gotcha covered. I’m a meat eater.
Really gotcha covered. Yes, yes. It’s always a good time, especially if you have some
friends to keep you company. You could go that extra mile
though, you know, of being a little extra full
just to eat it all. You know, we try to make it feel like
you’re somewhere else. You’re not in Seattle when
you walk into our restaurant. You’re somewhere in the islands. I love the art. It’s a nice, cool,
just relaxing atmosphere. Trendy looking, you know, but it’s still capturing
the colors of Jamaica. Definitely stands out
in Columbia City, I would say. Today, Chef Theo and I will be cooking Island Soul’s
famous collard greens. You go through a lot
of collard greens, right? I go through a lot
of collard greens. I need my own
collard green field. I love going to the farm
because they’re like this. When you go to the grocery
store, they’re like half. More flavor, to me they cook
better, because they’re local. And these greens
will blow your mind. I can’t wait. Now we head to the kitchen to make Island Soul’s
delicious collard greens. You gotta eat your vegetables,
that’s how I was raised, and these are the vegetables
that mom cooked. I’ll let you have these
right over there. Okay, thank you. I tried to give you
the majority, actually. Make me do all the work. Make you do all the work. Everything is edible
except the dirt. and we just washed that off,
so we’re good. and we just washed that off,
so we got that done. Knife skills okay here? Not really. Okay, well,
we’ll cut real slow. Okay. Roll the collard greens
up into a bundle, nice and tight to help with cutting them.
Cut the leaves into strips, making the stems into bite size
pieces or smaller. Like I said,
we’re not wasting anything. We’re gonna put all that to
work and all that into our pot, and all that into our belly. Good job. Chopped. What you doing tomorrow? There’s no fingers in there
either. No fingers in it
and they still look green. Although this may seem like
it’s too much for the pot, don’t worry. Once it starts boiling,
they shrink. They shrink down. Yeah, so all of this will fit
into that pot. Now we add our cut up greens
to the pot. When you think of spinach,
it can cook in seconds. It takes about a good 45 to
an hour to cook collard greens if you’re cooking ’em right. I did not know that. Yeah,
you want ’em soft, tender. Now, we pour in some water,
rice wine vinegar, some garlic, a couple of pinches of thyme,
a dash of pepper, granulated garlic and salt. People say
what’s your measurement? I don’t have one. When it comes to
any type of seasoning you always taste as you go. So once this all cooks down, I can take a stem
and feel that it’s softened Okay. and it’s getting to the point I can put it in my mouth
and chew it. We chop up all the vegetables. Chop up some yellow onions, red and green peppers and
carrots into bite size pieces. You want to see
all your vegetables, ‘cuz once you see
all the colors in there, your eyes are already excited
about tasting it. Get them boiling and we talk
for the next 45 minutes. Nice.
We’ll go have some rum. There you go. Oh, and I got that.
Lots of that. Wow. So this was 45 minutes
to an hour. You see how the stems
are nice and, you’ll tell when you taste them,
nice and tender. To your health,
to your health. To your health. Island Soul. Tangy, soft. Yes. And healthy, man. And healthy. That’s really good. That’s delicious. Love ’em. Thank you so much, Theo. Thank you. To get the recipe for
Island Soul’s collard greens, visit wagrown.com While usually associated with the southern parts
of the United States, collard greens can be grown
around the country and even in your own backyard. Collard greens
are a variation of wild cabbage and belong to the same species
as cauliflower, broccoli, brussel sprouts and kale. Popular varieties
of collard greens in the U.S. include Georgia Southern,
Morris Heading, and Butter Collard. But, no matter the variety, they all make for
a healthy addition to any meal. One half cup serving contains only 35 calories
and very little fat. Like other dark,
leafy green veggies, collard greens
are a great source of Vitamin K which our body uses to keep
our blood flowing and our blood vessels healthy. Collard greens
also promote healthy vision, because they’re a rich source
of Vitamin A. These crunchy vegetables are
also a good source of Calcium, so they can help children
build strong bones and reduce the risk
of osteoporosis in adults. Once harvested, collard greens
can stay fresh and delicious in your refrigerator,
or they can be frozen and enjoyed
throughout the winter months. That way, you can enjoy
the health benefits of these tasty greens in a
variety of ways as a side dish, or in your favorite soup
all year round. Coming up, we’re visiting
Twin Brook Creamery, a dairy that works hard to keep the water around it
crystal clear. This is full of poo? Yes. Okay. Nutrients. Nutrients. There you go. We’re in the Skagit Valley
at Viva Farms and I’m joined now by the guy
in charge, Michael Frazier. Thanks for having us. So tell me exactly what you do
here at Viva Farms. Everything. No. Pretty much, right? Including pick up the trash,
that’s what I like to say. Viva Farms is a farm incubator, meaning they give other farmers
the tools and training they need to make farming a business
they can rely on. I do my part to make sure
the program’s running well and that there’s funding to do
it, and that farmers are happy. The origins are like,
well, you know, what do farmers need
to start their business? And over the course
of the last ten years, we’ve identified what we call
the essentials, which are training, land,
infrastructure, equipment, markets and capital. So we provide
all those essentials to beginning farm businesses so they can both start and
scale their farm businesses. Viva’s mission is to develop
the next generation of farmers to grow food. If there aren’t enough
beginning farmers that are learning how to farm
and scaling businesses to replace those folks
who are retiring, at some point,
where does our food come from? Student farms allow the participants to join
a cohort of other future farmers in a nine month practicum. Here, they learn everything
from crop planting to finances and bookkeeping
for their future businesses. Once folks go through
that program, they can actually choose
to incubate on site and actually lease land
from us, just like an egg incubator.
The environment’s right where you can be successful
and hatch and launch. I’m Giana. I’m Matthew. We’re the Crows Farm. So we first kind of got
the idea of starting a farm, we were familiar
with the incubator program, so we knew about the concept
and just started seeing if there was any of those
kinds of programs in the area and we found Viva. And shortly after,
signed a lease, and five years later,
here we are. We wanna have people
prepared for success right out of the gates,
because if they start year one and have a certain level
of success, they’re more likely to actually
continue the second year and at some point, scale.
Which is what we’ve seen since we’ve implemented that
practicum as our pre-requisite. We leased one acre from Viva and
now we’re farming 6 1/2, 7 acres in our fifth year. One of our largest contingents
are Latino folks, so we offer all the programs
we offer, bilingually. And one of our primary missions
is to actually help farmworkers become farm owners. Estoy estes mi segundo año. It’s his second year here. Francisco is a farmer
leasing land from Viva after going through
their program. He only speaks Spanish, so we’re talking to and through
his interpreter. Viva taught me different things
about managing my business, about organic certification, also helped him learn
how to drive tractors, how to drive the tractor
on the highway in particular. So all kinds of things like that that would have been
hard to learn on his own. Approximately 40 percent
of our participants over time have actually been
previous farmworkers that have now started
their own businesses here. We also have
a large contingent of women that own and operate
their own farm, way above
the national average. Pretty much
the whole spectrum, we have college graduates, we have people that are on
their second or third career that want to kind of
move towards farming. It’s great to be outside and it’s good to be
a business owner. There’s just a lot
of benefits that Viva offers and if he were trying to
start this up independently, it would have been hard
the same kind of benefits. You can see the result,
kinda thing, you know. See how your hard work
is paying off. Farmers are scaling and they’re
making substantial income, and they’re continuing to see
farming as a viable business moving forward. Good job. Gracias. Twin Brook Creamery in Lynden is home to some of the finest
chocolate milk in the state. Happy.
It’s good stuff. Thank you.
Thank you very kindly. Larry Stap and his family represent five generations
of farmers in this area, and taking care of the land
is more than a tradition, it’s their purpose. We are a family owned
and operated dairy that exists to glorify God through the stewardship
of the land and animals that He has entrusted to our
care in the best way possible. That is our driving force
about what we do. So, my parents
did a good job farming, but we do things
a whole lot different and a whole lot better,
and the next generation is even going to do it a whole lot different
and a whole lot better. One of those better practices
on the dairy farm includes automatic
milking parlors for their cows. When we converted
to these automated milkers, we got a 20 percent bump
in milk production. Wow. It was just…
blew our mind away. She walked in there completely
on her own accord. She’s getting a little bit
of barley. So now she’s just
into her time of preparation. You’ll watch a laser. She gets sanitized
and washed. Yep. You’ll notice
the laser light camera taking pictures of where
the teat placement is, Okay. So now,
while she’s being milked, it’s exactly weighing how many
pounds she’s producing, it’s taking a sample of the
butterfat content of her milk, it’s taking a sample of the
protein content of her milk, it’s taking the temperature
of her milk, because if a cow had a fever,
it would know the temperature. Wow. Yeah, so it’s doing all those
things simultaneously. Larry and his family invested
in upright storage tanks with the help of the
Whatcom Conservation District and farm bill funding. These tanks hold manure to
prevent runoff into waterways. So, this is full of poo. Yes. Okay. Nutrients. Nutrients. There you go. The dairy also sits
near Fishtrap Creek which is a fish-bearing
tributary of the Nooksack River. The family keeps their cows
out of the creek and planted trees as a buffer
to create shade for the creek. I think dairies, especially
here in Whatcom County, are one of the biggest
champions of water quality. Dr. Nicole Embertson is the Whatcom County
Conservation District’s Science and Planning
Coordinator. Manure gets a really bad rap
as a pollutant, but it’s also one of our
most important soil amenders. It increases
water infiltration so that we don’t have runoff
off the landscape. Nicole says
a few dairies in the area have been leaders
in the conservation efforts, but there is still opportunity
for improvement in the region. We can see in the water quality
improvement a huge downfall, or reduction in fecal coliform
entrance to the river as dairies really did,
en masse, great conservation movement
towards reducing that. Then there was still
some issues, and those were resolved when we
started looking at other sources septic,
non-dairy livestock farms, dog poop for that instance, recognizing wildlife
and when they’re out there. So we’ve really been able
to work collaboratively with all sorts of
different sources to reduce everyone’s impact
and that is when we really saw a sustainable
water quality improvement. She says conservation practices
among all community partners have helped improve
water quality. Larry, thank you so much for the tour and for
this delicious chocolate milk. My pleasure. It’s awesome. I’m in the kitchen at Second
Harvest Food Bank in Spokane, and I’m joined by two
very special guests. We have Liz Schneider here, who’s a potato farmer
down in Pasco. Thank you for joining us. Thank you for having me. Yeah,
and we have Laurent Zirotti. He’s the chef and owner of Fleur
de Sel Creperie in Spokane. So, we get to taste some food
today. That’s a tough job. Right. So we are gonna taste some food
from Allrecipes.com. And we featured Allrecipes.com
on Washington Grown before. They’re based over in Seattle
and it’s just a great website where you can find recipes
for just about anything. Anything, yes. Yeah. So, today, we are going to taste
some Portuguese Kale soup from John P. He says
it’s the best Portuguese soup made by my mother, Christina. Kale, who’s a kale fan? It must be you. My wife. My wife.
My wife loves it. You’re wife loves kale. Patricia loves kale. You’re sort of
on the fence about kale. There’s potatoes in the soup,
I think, right? And sausage I heard. Yeah. Okay. But kale is, it’s… We’re ignoring the kale. No, It’s a great vegetable,
it’s a superfood, it’s full of nutrients.
It’s good for you. But some people maybe
don’t know how to cook it. It can be tough and… It can. Maybe we need to try that soup. I’ve made kale chips before. Those are good. Well anyway, let’s make the
soup and we get to try it. Maybe it’ll change our mind
about kale. It might. Completely. We’ll give it a try. Alright, let’s do it. Ready to try it? Oh, I… I’m ready. It’s just warm
and looks delicious. Looks inviting and comforting. Oh, the chorizo.
Ooh, it’s spicy. Oh, lordy. But, I must say, the kale
is delicious in this soup. It kind of takes the heat down
a little bit from the spicy sausage. The kale isn’t overwhelming.
I think that’s what I expect. It’s well cooked.
It’s almost like a stew. The cabbage is cooked
the same way. It’s a little spicy. It is a little spicy
but it’s good. The broth is good. It’s a great soup
and if you don’t, if you think the chorizo’s
too spicy, you can replace it
with another sausage. So this is Portuguese Kale soup,
and according to Allrecipes.com, Portuguese recipes
are really hot right now. Oh, well, that’s hot. Yeah, this is hot. Something that people
are interested in. This is from Beverly. She says,
The recipe is the best. Instead of dried, I used
canned white northern beans, tossed everything into the pot
and let it simmer. It was very good. Let’s see, Q. says,
This was good but spicy, because of the chorizo. I cooked it in a crockpot
and it smelled delicious. It is very authentic. A great way
to chase away the cold. Great for the season of fall. Love it. Well, thank you John P.
for the Portuguese Kale soup. I might eat kale again. What? To get the recipe for this
Portuguese Kale Soup, visit wagrown.com Our state of Washington
has more than 35,000 farms and the majority of those
are small farms. That’s it for this episode
of Washington Grown. Thanks for watching.

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