• Updated Website Address: LocalBanquet.org
  • Looking Back on a Decade of Maple Innovation
  • Listening to Farmers’ Voices in the Ecosystem Services Discussion
  • Updated Website Address: LocalBanquet.org

    We've changed our website. Please update your bookmarks to LocalBanquet.org LocalBanquet.org is where you will now find the latest Local Banquet stories, a new Story of the Day update feature, features from the archives, and information on how to contribute to Local Banquet if you're interested in writing about Vermont agriculture. 

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  • Looking Back on a Decade of Maple Innovation

    Back in 2007, Local Baquet ran an article by Bonnie Hudspeth on maple innovation and production in Vermont. Since then, maple production in Vermont has tripled to 1.8 million gallons a year and innovation seems to have entered a new golden (or perhaps amber) age. We did a quick maple innovation news round up for 2018 / 2019 to help everyone keep up with the some of the trends. 

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  • Listening to Farmers’ Voices in the Ecosystem Services Discussion

    In 2015, the USDA funded a project for UVM researchers to engage in discussions with Vermont farmers about the idea of being paid for ecosystem services. Ecosystem services are things farmers do that improve the environment for everyone, a common example is grass-based farms capturing carbon in the soil as a way to combat climate change. Some services happen naturally through sustainable farming, others take more of an incentive to implement, and either way some policy makers believe that farmers shoudl be compensated for their contribution. 

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Roasted Heritage Turkey

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Roasted Heritage Turkey

The Clarks of Applecheek Farm include this tried and true recipe with each heritage turkey they sell. It is adapted from heritage turkey farmer and chef Sandra Kay Miller of Pennsylvania.

Ingredients

  • 15-lb. fresh heritage turkey at room temperature
  • kosher or sea salt & freshly ground pepper
  • 4 cups giblet broth (see recipe bellow)
  • rosemary maple butter (see recipe bellow)
  • oiled parchment paper
  • 2 cups white wine (a deep, oaky chardonnay lends a wonderful taste)
  • 2 cups water
  • giblets & neck
  • bay leaf
  • 1/2 pound butter
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon freshly minced rosemary

Directions

1. Rub turkey inside and out with salt and pepper.

2. Loosen the skin around the breast with your fingers and insert rosemary maple butter between the meat and the skin, as well as on the inside of the bird’s cavity.

3. Set bird in deep roasting pan. Use a wire rack to lift the bird off the bottom of the pan.

4. Add the giblet broth to the bottom of the pan. Using a sheet of oiled parchment paper, tent the roasting pan with the oiled parchment paper. (Any type of cooking oil can be used; brush it on both sides with a pastry brush.) The parchment paper is easily affixed to the roasting pan with a strip of foil on each end or you can use clean, oiled wooden clothespins. Remove parchment paper during the last 30 minutes of cooking to develop a crispy, golden skin.

5. Preheat oven at 425–450 °F. Roast the bird until the thigh temperature reaches 140–150 °F; this can take 8-10 minutes per pound. Let the bird rest 10–15 minutes before carving to let the juices settle. Serves 10–12 people.

A word about basting

Quick roasting at high temperatures means the oven temperature needs to be maintained and frequent basting defeats that purpose. By adding butter under the skin, the bird is self-basted. Baste the bird when you remove the parchment tent. If there is not enough liquid for basting, add either more water or wine.

Giblet Broth

Simmer the wine, water, giblets, bay leaf, and salt in a small saucepan for 15 minutes. Discard bay leaf and neck. Giblets can be discarded if they aren’t your type of thing, or they can be finely chopped and added to the broth.

Rosemary Maple Butter

Bring butter to room temperature and whip the butter, maple syrup, and rosemary together.

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Our stories, interviews, and essays reveal how Vermont residents are building their local food systems, how farmers are faring in a time of great opportunity and challenge, and how Vermont’s agricultural landscape ties into larger questions of sustainability and the future of our food supply.