The Hippo


Apr 25, 2019








Brookford Vegetable Salad. Courtesy of Brookford Farm, Canterbury.

Blueberry pie

(Courtesy of Wilson Farm (144 Charles Bancroft Highway, Litchfield; 882-5551;
1 quart wild blueberries (4 to 5 cups)
2/3 cup sugar
1/3 flour
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
1 to 2 teaspooons lemon juice
1 tablespoon butter or margarine
Mix the blueberries, sugar, flour, cinnamon and lemon juice. Spoon into the bottom pie crust and dot with the butter, cut into small pieces. Cover with the top crust and seal carefully. Cut steam vents and bake at 425 degrees for approximately 30 minutes or until the crust is brown and the juice starts to bubble through the vents. Serve slightly warm with ice cream.
Sauteed summer patty pan squash
Courtesy of Apple Hill Farm (580 Mountain Road, Concord; 224-8862;
2 pounds  mixed squash washed and cut into medium-sized chunks
4 tablespoons butter
3 green onions, finely sliced
¼ cup green, red or banana sweet pepper, diced
1 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons water
Melt butter in a large saucepan. Add onions and peppers. Saute for 3 minutes. Add squash, salt, pepper and water. Cover and bring to boil. Reduce heat and cook until tender, stirring frequently.
Vegetable salad with homemade garlic and dill dressing
Courtesy of Brookford Farm (250 West Road, Canterbury; 742-4084;
Salad contents (ingredients may vary):
Rainbow chard
Red head lettuce
Red onions
Beet greens
Sliced raw beets
Sliced raw carrots
Dressing ingredients:
8-ounce container Brookford Farm garlic and dill quark
2  tablespoons apple cider vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
Spatchcocked grilled chicken
(Serves 4-6 people)
Courtesy of Webster Ridge Farm (1482 Pleasant St., Webster; 648-2595;
Brine formula (ingredients for 1 qt.):
¼ cup kosher salt
¼ cup sugar
1 quart cold water
Prepare brine, using a container where 3 quarts will submerge the entire chicken. After washing, put the chicken in brine and leave for 8 hours or more. Rinse the chicken in water and soak for 10 minutes. Butterfly the chicken by cutting the backbone and removing the breastbone. The chicken will lay flatter, resulting in more even cooking.
Place the chicken on a large Weber Kettle or other charcoal grill. Start the fire but leave it heaped at one side of the grill. Put down a layer of aluminum foil to shield the chicken from the direct heat, adding a few pieces of charcoal every 15 to 30 minutes.
Turn the chicken (do not flip) to keep from overdoing the edge nearest to the fire. Chicken will finish cooking in about 1 hour. Test the chicken’s breasts and thighs using a thermometer.


Make a local-harvest meal
Farmers share tips and recipes

By Matt Ingersoll

Summer is the perfect time of the year to try out new recipes drawn straight from local vendors who sell at farmers markets or from their own onsite farm stands. Several farms in the Granite State raising their own meat and growing their own fruits and vegetables provided recipe suggestions and instructions on how best to use their products for a delicious, healthy meal.

Main course
Brandon Sussman of Webster Ridge Farm in Webster says that the proper treatment of chickens on a farm is critical for the overall taste and quality of a recipe.
“We raise [chickens as] humanely as possible in every way,” he said.
Sussman has also raised cows, pigs, lambs and even guinea fowl on his farm, which started back in early 2000. He sells meats and preserves at several farmers markets and local businesses in the greater Concord area.
“It was around July of 2001 that we started raising chickens,” he said. “You get to know a specialty pretty quickly and to learn how to cook them the correct way.”
Sussman provided tips for cooking spatchcocked chicken, the process of which should start a day ahead of time so the chicken can have plenty of time to absorb the brine. After at least eight hours of soaking, Sussman rinses the chicken with water and soaks it for at least 10 minutes. This is followed by “butterflying,” a technique used to make a thick piece of meat thinner, which in turn allows it to cook better and faster. This is done by cutting out the backbone and removing the breastbone.
“It can be done with little to no strength; you just need a sharp little knife that will flatten it out,” he said, adding that it should not be cut too close to the center.
The chicken is then laid across a layer of aluminum foil on a charcoal grill. Sussman said a Weber Kettle works nicely and he advises against using brisquettes. Starting a slower and cooler fire, while adding a few pieces of charcoal and turning — but not flipping — the chicken every 15 to 30 minutes, is ideal. The chicken will be finished grilling in about an hour.
Veggie lovers can't go wrong with an original salad mix grown and sold by Brookford Farm in Canterbury, which has roughly 40 acres of fresh vegetables in production — and they even make their own salad dressing.
The mix contains a variety of several different vegetables all grown on the farm, according to outreach coordinator Hillary Bailey.
“We use our own compost from our cows, pigs and chickens and they are grass-fed and pasture-raised. So that keeps our vegetable production as sustainable as it can be,” she said.
Bailey said the contents of the salad can change depending on what vegetables are in season. 
The garlic and dill salad dressing is made with a soft spread cheese that is mixed with olive oil and vinegar to create a ranch-like taste. Bailey said the measurements used to make the dressing are a base and adjustments are recommended based on taste preferences.
Brookford Farm is one of the largest family-run operations in the Granite State, with products sold at several farmers markets and other locations in Manchester, Kensington, Salem, Hollis and other towns. 
At Apple Hill Farm in Concord, co-owner Diane Souther says they sell their products onsite and also set up shop each week at the  Bedford Farmers Market on Tuesdays and the Concord Farmers Market on Saturdays. 
What started as a strictly wholesale apple farm back in 1978 has since evolved into an operation that grows more than 40 different kinds of fruits and vegetables
“In the '80s, we decided to diversify from just apples to planting additional crops,” said Souther, who, with her husband Chuck, has been involved in the agricultural industry since high school. “So now we grow peaches, pears, plums, raspberries and blueberries. And we also do all different kinds of cucumbers, summer squashes and zucchinis.”
Souther said a popular summer vegetable recipe is the sauteed patty pan squash, also known as the “spaceship squash” for its physical appearance. She said the squash can be served in different sizes and can be stuffed as well as served as a side dish.
With more than 500 acres of farmland in Litchfield, the longtime family-run Wilson Farm stands as the largest produce farm in the Granite State.
The farm is open for six months out of the year and largely operates as a retail business. It has been owned by the Wilson family for generations dating back to 1884. 
“We have a very rich farm soil. We make our own compost and use it in the fields,” said Cathy Lemire, Wilson's Farm Stand manager. “Nothing ever goes to waste.”
The Wilsons also own a 33-acre farm and store in Lexington, Mass.
“We grow using what's called integrated pest management, or IPM,” she said. “That means we try not use any pesticide chemicals if possible, and we try to find other ways to control insects and other pests.”
Jason Yu of Wilson Farm said blueberry picking season began in mid-July. The farm sells its own cookbook filled with original recipes, which include several desserts using their own blueberries, like blueberry pie, streusel squares and a shortcake made with blueberries and peaches. 

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