March update with Gabrielle Homer:
When I think of March, it’s wearing a variety of shades of green. Among them, the pale green of the hillsides being blanketed with sprouting native grasses, the bright green of shamrocks heralding St. Patrick’s Day, the white-green of boiled cabbage cooked with corned beef, the dark juniper green of branches freshly cleaned by winter snow, and the “John Deere” green tractors working in the field.
True confessions, I am not a big fan of the aforementioned corned beef. It’s a once a year menu item for me, but I do enjoy a home-brined brisket, with potatoes and cabbage in March as a celebration of the transition from late winter to early spring. For many years in our family March meant the start of braving the cold at a baseball field somewhere watching our boys play from t-ball through to high school state tournaments and everything in between. Those were fleeting days, cold days, but I do miss them a lot. Corned beef makes great sandwiches to take along for activities without any services nearby, to pack your own “concessions.”
The most exciting news is I hope you have had time to check out the brand new beef offerings on our website. You can now customize your own beef box including a limited supply of beef brisket so you can make your own corned beef for St. Patrick’s Day! Take a look and let us know what you think. Input is very welcome!
On the ranch, the field work was going strong, a little early this year due to unusually mild weather, preparing for grains and grasses to be planted. That all came to a halt when winter descended again this week with record cold and snow. Prayers for April RAIN showers to get those crops going once planted are said daily. Calves are going to start being branded and yearlings are then moving to spring feed. Spring brandings are quite a social event, we will talk about that next month.
Speaking of branding, my sister-in-law Jen usually cooks branding dinner on the Homer Ranch and I asked her what’s on the menu. She said her go-to for branding is a whole chuck roll. She puts some seasoning on it and puts it in a roaster the night before set at 275 degrees. In the morning she throws in some potatoes, onions and carrots and lets them cook until it’s time to eat. She also mentioned “Don’t forget the homemade rolls and gravy!” I cooked a chuck pot roast myself this weekend, a little different method for a small roast for just Will and I and some left overs. Try it and enjoy.