Nice article in the Goshen News

The Goshen News wrote an article featuring Clay Bottom Farm, some good friends of ours, and none other than your very own Blue Heron Farm! Thanks John Kline for a job well done.

Check it out at:

CSA Signup Begins Now!

You love local, sustainable food and now we have a great new way to get it to you: we’re now taking orders for Blue Heron Farm’s Summer 2012 Meat CSA.

If ordering a half hog or quarter of beef was just too much food for your freezer or family, this is a convenient and streamlined way to get delicious pasture-based meats to your table.

Members will get a monthly package of local, pasture-raised pork, beef and chicken, a corresponding recipe or two and an attractive Blue Heron Farms reusable tote bag.

More information on our CSA Page!

To order or ask questions, call Tom & Cas at 574-642-5063 or Adam & Elise at 574-971-5146.

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year from Blue Heron Farm.  Work continues on the farm even in the coldest parts of the year. The piggies are getting fat, the sheep are pregnant, and the cattle are eating lots of good hay.  Our first batch of pigs for the new year will be ready in March.  You can reserve your half or whole hog by contacting us.  Or for more info check out the pork page.

Carmela, one of our Icelandic ewes. She has been with us for 6 years, and consistently produces fat healthy lambs.

Steer on a frosty morning. The animals have enjoyed the mild winter.

Giving Thanks

We hope you all enjoyed your Thanksgiving turkey. We sure did!

We also want to give a heartfelt (if belated) thank you to all of you who came out for our field day at the end of October. It was great to see all your lovely faces, take you around the farm, and share a meal with you. And the rain held off until the very end, so we’re thankful for that, too. So, one more time–thank you for your support!

And many thanks to our friend and customer Adam Carter Nafziger for taking these beautiful photos.


We’re happy to announce that based on the great success of this fall’s CSA at Blue Heron Farms, we’re going to continue and expand next year.

Starting in June, we will begin 3-month CSA periods – one basket per month for three months. We will have a variety of pork, beef, chicken and lamb available – for example, a basket might have a leg of lamb, three chickens and 2-3 pounds of ground beef or pork sausage.  We’re still finalizing membership pricing – we’ve had good feedback from our test CSA this fall that cost $150, but we’re considering increasing the size slightly while trying to keep it in the within the reach of folks with a small freezer.

Please email us if you’re interested!

Best Ever Thanksgiving Turkey

Here’s a picture of the turkey we dry-brined according to the following recipe (ignore the delicious pork roast in the background). It was AWESOME.

1. Wash the turkey inside and out and pat it dry.

2. Sprinkle the inside of the turkey lightly with salt. Place the turkey on its back and salt the breasts, concentrating the salt in the center, where the meat is thickest. Sprinkle liberally, about 6 TB for the whole bird, so about 3 TB here.

3. Turn the turkey on one side and sprinkle the entire side with salt, concentrating on the thigh (about 1 TB). Flip the turkey over and do the same with the opposite side.

4. Place the turkey in a 2½-gallon sealable plastic bag, press out the air and seal tightly. Place the turkey breast-side up in the refrigerator. Chill for 1-2 days, turning halfway through.

5. Remove the turkey from the bag on Thanksgiving morning. Rinse off any visible salt and pat dry. Refrigerate uncovered until one hour before roasting. Then remove and rub with butter (and fresh rosemary if you like). Preheat oven to 425 F.

6. Place the turkey on a roasting rack in a roasting pan. Roast at 425 F for 25 minutes. Turn the oven down to 325 F and roast until all meat registers 165 F, just under 3 total hours for a 12 pound bird, about 4 hours for a 16 pound bird or 2.5 for a ten pound bird. This does not take into account suffing! I’ve always found that there’s a fair amount of variation in turkey times, which is why step 7 is so great (a little wiggle room):

7. Rest the Turkey!  Cover in foil and let sit for 15-25 minutes. This will help overall juiciness and makes everything better.

Here’s me slicing the turkey – it was beautiful, crispy and brown on the outside and even the breast meat was still juicy the next day, cold, straight from the refrigerator. Also, I just noticed that my mother seems to be wearing my father’s sneakers in the background.


Leg of Lamb Recipe

Here’s our favorite recipe for leg of lamb, shamelessly cribbed from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s book Meat, which has taught me more about what to do with meat than any other. And like Hugh says in the book – don’t worry about the anchovies, they’re just little bits of salty goodness, not too fishy.

1 leg or shoulder of lamb
3 large garlic cloves
4 anchovy fillets, cut into several slivers each (they’re in tins at Meijer and maybe the co-op)
Several Rosemary Sprigs, cut into short lengths
Olive oil
One Glass White Wine
One Glass Water

Put the lamb in a roasting pan. With the tip of a sharp knife, make slits in the meat 3/4 to 1 1/4 inches deep – say 12 to 15 in all. Use your finger to push a piece of garlic, a piece of anchovy and a piece of rosemary into each slit. Don’t worry if some stick out a bit. Rub a little olive oil (oil from the anchovy can works great) over the surface of the meat (I use some salt here, too) and put it in a very hot oven (4500 degrees)  for half an hour.  Pour the glass of wine over the meat (maybe pour one for yourself) and turn it down to 3250 and roast it for 50 minutes to 2 hours, depending on how well you like your lamb done.

I always use a thermometer with big pieces of meat like this. I have notes in the book on this recipe from a Christmas meal in 2009 when we did two legs (!) for a family gathering – we had a pinker one and a done-er one to suit people’s tastes.  The pinker one was a little too rare at 1380 (the USDA says always cook everything to 1450 for what it’s worth) and the one for people who like meat well done was a little overdone at 1580,, (I thought) but they liked it quite well.

About ten minutes before the lamb is done, pour the glass of water in to the bottom of the roasting pan. Remove the joint from the pan when it is done and leave to rest in a warm place for at least 20 minutes (REALLY DO THIS! IT MAKES A DIFFERENCE!!!) Then adjust juices as you like – making a gravy or just add a splash of wine and maybe some salt and dish the juice out with a spoon, which is what we usually do.

I wish I had a picture… maybe that’s a good excuse to roast one of these up…

Come out to the farm! We’ve got new friends…

We think our new piglets are pretty cute, but you can decide for yourself.

Come meet our new friends tomorrow at the Blue Heron Farm field day. On Saturday from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM, we’ll be enjoying the sunshine, taking hay rides around the farm, and serving up a delicious meal inspired by this beautiful season:

Pit Roasted Pork Loin
Herbed Butternut Squash & Fingerling Potatoes
Mixed Greens
Baked Apple Goody
Hot Spiced Cider

Come join us! $15 per adult, $5 for kids 12 and under, free for kids 2 and under. Let us know if you can make it: RSVP to Tom and Cas at

2nd Annual Pastured Meats Field Day

Updated Menu:

Pit Roasted Pork Loin

Herbed Butternut Squash & Fingerling Potatoes

Mixed Greens

Baked Apple Goody

Hot Spiced Cider

Coming soon to a Blue Heron Farm near you–our annual field day featuring farm tours, good farm cooking, and general joviality for all!  We invite you to join us for this most excellent event on  Saturday, October 29 beginning at 11:00 am and running until 2:00pm.  Bring your family, bring your friends and meet our turkeys, sheep, cattle, and hogs.  We will serve lunch beginning at 12:00pm featuring some of our own pasture raised chicken and other tasty local foods.  The cost for the event is $15, $5 for kids 12 and under, and children 2 and under are free.  Please wear clothing appropriate to the weather and bring blankets or lawn chairs for the lunch.  RSVP by e-mail to  Hope to see you here!

A winter meat CSA!

An update:  Our winter CSA is full!  Look for info in the spring for an expanded CSA.

We gladly announce a trial run of Michiana’s first meat CSA, beginning in October and running into December.  The plan is as follows:  You the customer pay in advance for a once a month pickup of delectable frozen pastured meat including our chicken, pork, lamb, and maybe even a little beef.

The cost is $150 for 3 months.  Each month’s package would include a mix of different cuts and types of meat, and should easily provide a family of 4 with enough meat for six meals (and probably more with leftovers).  We also plan to provide a recipe each month featuring some of the included meat.

This will be a fairly limited trial run with only 10-15 shares available, so if you are interested or have questions email us at or call 574-642-5063.  We hope to kick things off the 2nd week in October.  If things work out well we will expand next year beginning late spring/early summer.

One month’s pickup might include: 2 chickens, 8 pork chops, and 2 lbs. ground lamb, or

1 chicken, 2 lbs pork sausage, 8 lamb chops, 1 pack beef ribs