Saturday, 10 December 2016

Year End Garlic

Since the calendar says it's officially (almost) mid December, it's time to be focusing on Christmas preparations.  It's been a very busy fall here though, so instead of baking and decorating, today is garlic day!

Earlier this fall we planted garlic cloves and put them to bed until spring.  It's always amazing to see garlic starting to pop through once the March sun starts shining.  It's certainly one of our favourite first signs of spring!

But.....we still had a couple of baskets left from our incredible 2016 garlic harvest sitting in the kitchen for more than a few weeks needing to be dealt with.  Today is the day!

You know we like experimenting with our home grown food so after a quick internet search, we decided to give freezing garlic a try. We're hoping this means we'll be able to extend the season and have garlic cloves until we're ready to harvest again in July 2017.

First off we needed to figure out an easy way to peel the individual cloves.  Here's our tip - shake, shake, shake!

We just put heads of garlic and cloves in a glass jar and shook and shook and shook.  The result - pretty good and a lot less peeling than what we started with!
After lots of shaking and peeling, here's the end result - a big pile of cloves (and a very garlicy smelling kitchen!).

After a quick rinse, we placed the cloves into clean jars for easy freezing.  We're hoping the jars contain the garlic smell a bit....or else Christmas baking we tuck away in the freezer might appeal to different senses this year!

We'll let you know what we think over the next few months.  #loveONTfood #lovelocal

Friday, 2 September 2016

What a Corn Year!

2016 is definitely going down in our books as a year to remember!

If you've been following our blog, Facebook page or Tweets, you'll know that the dry conditions have wreaked havoc with our regular sweet corn crop.  We've learned from the generations of farmers that we're descendants of that there are sometimes great years, challenging years and difficult times.

Thanks to the Doris, Fitzgerald, Leahy, Condon, Wren, Gibbons, Pettigrew and McGaghran families (that's a who's who of farm families of both Peterborough and Renfrew Counties!) for persevering and passing along a love of the land and a lifestyle that combines family, faith, farming and friends.

Image result for image of family faith and farming

Corn season is definitely winding down but we're enjoying a lovely last few varieties of sweet corn. We'll be open all Labour Day Weekend but not likely for much longer after that.  So please do stop in and get your last feeds of Dorisdale Sweet Corn of the 2016 vintage!

Thanks to all our patient customers this year as we dealt with smaller produce and sporadic openings. We're looking forward to 2017!

Thursday, 11 August 2016

Reminiscing About 2001

Thanks to all our wonderful customers, neighbours, friends and family for your patience in this hot, dry season.  We appreciate your visits, calls, messages, emails and advance orders this corn season.

As mentioned in previous posts, we're estimating that we've lost between 60 and 70% of our 2016 sweet corn crop.  Not only have the days with corn on the table been few and far between, our family is seriously behind in our corn quota!  We usually eat corn twice a day (at least) throughout the season since we live by Grandma Bernadette's philosophy of you don't sell anything you haven't eaten yourself! We can count on one hand how many times we've only managed sweet corn on our own dinner plates.  (Must admit we did have a delicious yellow for breakfast though yesterday!)

Today our daughter Maggie turns 15 and that has us reminiscing about the dry summer of 2001.  Our corn sales were cut short that year between a mixture of dry weather and the arrival of beautiful 2nd daughter!  Reflecting helps to remind us that there are good years and there are bad years. 2016 definitely falls into the bad category in terms of sweet corn productivity; family wise, this year and many others fall into the good category.

Maggie with big sister Claire - August 2001

From the looks of a sweaty Claire, the weather in summer of 2001 was hot too!

We thought we should share this picture of Maggie's 1st birthday dinner.  As a true Doris and corn lover, we couldn't get her to put her cob of corn down for pictures or birthday cake!  Poor Maggie didn't have corn for dinner tonight either.  For anyone who's met Maggie at the stand this year, it is really incredible how quickly our kids grow up isn't it!

Maggie, her corn cob and 1st birthday cake (with Claire) August 11, 2002

We're hoping to mange being back in the corn business either Friday or Saturday (it is, after all, a day-to-day business).  Stay tuned and watch for our signs.  And thanks again for your patience and love for locally grown food!

Friday, 5 August 2016

Garlic Taste Testing

Despite the drought, our garlic crop is incredible this year.  If you're a garlic lover, plan to stop in and stock up for winter - it is delicious!

Since it was a vacation-from-work-but-working-on-the-farm week, we took the opportunity to try a couple new recipes.  We can't wait to try our spicy pickled green beans (another recipe from our favourite pickling resource - The Complete Book of Pickling by local  Home Economist Jennifer Mackenzie).

But on the garlic theme, we must share this delicious dinner idea- Beef and Pesto Roulade.  Using Dorisdale Farm Round Marinating Steak, we decided this is definitely one dinner option we need to make again.  Instead of traditional basil pesto though, we made it using frozen garlic scape pesto we made during garlic scaping season. Delicious!

(Note - not our photography - credit to

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Savour the Season

Instead of weather sadness, we're being positive and savouring the season!

We have two delicious varieties available today - a bi-colour and a white corn (one of our family favourites).  As you know, our crop is running at about 25-30% of where it should be, so that just means enjoy it while you can!

We love experimenting with new corn recipes each year.  Well actually, to be honest, trying new recipes that feature locally and Ontario grown vegetables and fruit is a favourite past time.  We've had great success.....well except for maybe the pickled milk weed experiment a couple years ago.

Here's a few new ideas fresh from the Toronto Star.  Why not try them today with Dorisdale corn that we actually have today! We'll be posting some of our favourite garlic recipes shortly too.

If you need corn, we recommend calling (705-295-2755), emailing ( or sending us a Facebook message if you have immediate corn needs.  We'll do our best to help you out!
Have a great hot day!

Monday, 1 August 2016

Ears Today, Gone Tomorrow!

Well 2016 is certainly shaping up to be quite the sweet corn season to go down in history.  It's a year of corn one day and not the next.  We've been calling it "Ears today, gone tomorrow"!

We did have a very light sprinkle of rain last night but it didn't amount to really anything.  We're hopeful that the forecast later this week will bring more at a critical time for our later corn.  But after this growing season so far, we're not holding our breathe.  Drought 2016 is hitting the history books.

So we do recommend that if you see our signs up on County Road 2, stop in for sweet corn.  It will likely be a day or two in between availability.

On the positive side, what corn we have is ready is delicious!  We have white corn - a definite family favourite - on the table today.  And we have time to do some fun swimming, a visit to a beautiful cottage, pickling (beans are processing right now), bringing in the last of first cut hay and working with 4-H calves and sheep.  4-H Achievement Days are coming up quickly now that the calendar has turned to August 1!

For some tips on selecting and storing sweet corn, check out this great website:

We can guarantee that with our fresh picked daily approach, you won't find dry silks at the top of our cobs.  (Note:  the article says tassels but that's the top part of the corn plant that we leave in the field.)

Looking forward to seeing you later today....or in a couple of days!

Monday, 25 July 2016

2016 Season is Here!

We're pleased to announce the opening of Dorisdale Farm Sweet Corn 2016 Season.  It's been a great summer for people on vacation - hot, humid, sunny rain-free days for the last month or so.  Definitely not the weather that keeps farmers optimistic and positive about growing crops of any kind. But, we've had hot dry years before (remember 2001 when Maggie was born?) and we continue on.  Guess that's farmers optimism.

Our sweet corn crop is definitely going to be less plentiful than many other years.  We recommend that you watch for our road side signs and when you see we're in business, stop and get your sweet corn fix IMMEDIATELY.  We may well not be open the next day or even on your next trip through Mathers Corners!

On a positive note though - garlic lovers rejoice!  We have one of the best crops, quantity and quality-wise, of the last 17 years that we've been experimenting with hard-neck garlic.  Be sure to stop by and stock up!

We'll continue to keep you posted with crop updates, happenings, recipes and some family stories.  Follow our blog (like you're doing right now), like Dorisdale Farm on Facebook for posts and watch for our corny tweets on Twitter by following @DorisdaleFarm.

The Doris family is looking forward to seeing you all at the corn table!

Crossing fingers for more rain,
Peter, Carolyn, Claire, Maggie, Liam & Ella