The View from the Farm – What Inspires?

by Jay Reesor

Before we opened our new store late last winter, we went through a significant process to come up with a name for it. After all, it was a new location and we were planning to offer more than what we had offered at the old location, and so Reesor’s Market & Bakery was born.

We also wanted to have a defining catch phrase for our shiny new store. After lots of deliberation and guidance from our friend Leslie Boctor, “Growing and making good food”, came into existence. I really like our new slogan because I believe it describes so well what we do on our farm and in the kitchen and bakery of Reesor’s. It’s even inspired me to create a little jingle to go with the slogan that I sometimes hum while I go about my work.

I am the head grower at the farm with the responsibility to produce the good food in “Growing and making good food.” My staff and I all work very hard at planting, cultivating, weeding, monitoring and caring for all of our crops including strawberries, sweet corn, tomatoes and squash. We take pride in producing delicious, nutritious produce that we are proud to offer to our customers.

An example of why I am particularly pleased to call the food we grow “good” this season is the fact that because we have learned to find ways to incorporate more clover into our sweet corn crop rotation we now will have healthier soils to produce healthier crops. That’s pretty exciting and I think helps to make for really “good food”.

It’s interesting how a few words can inspire and “Growing and making good food” has certainly inspired me to continue to search for new ways to make food that nurtures us all.

What words inspire you?

Strawberry, Goat Cheese & Spinach Salad

Two of Jay’s sisters recently got together in Calgary and came up with this delicious salad.  The more strawberries and black pepper the better they say!

6 cups spinach leaves, washed, dried, & torn
4 oz or about ½ cup of goat cheese, cut into chunks
1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
1-2 cups strawberries, washed, drained, hulled, & sliced

2 Tbsp maple syrup
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp soy sauce
½ – 1 tsp black pepper
1/4 cup canola oil

Combine all the dressing ingredients, except for the oil, in a bowl.  Pour the oil in a steady stream while whisking the other dressing ingredients to incorporate the oil into the dressing.

Place the spinach in a large salad bowl.  Pour the dressing over the spinach and toss the salad. Place the other ingredients over the top of the salad and toss gently.  Serve immediately.

Merrylynd Organic Farm

Farmer Peter Leahy, one of our beef producers, comes from one of the oldest farming families in Ontario. His family has been farming in the Lakefield area for the past 200 years.

Today, he runs Merrylynd Farm, a fully organic and GMO-free farm and mill in Lakefield, Ontario. Peter has been growing organic grains and producing organic beef and chicken since 1998. He made the switch to organics because he believes it makes good sense for the environment and for the community.
Peter suspects his cattle are truly happy, roaming outdoors all year round. In the summer, his herd of Angus Brown cows and bull have their own off-farm holiday at a secluded organic grass pasture to graze and breed.

We’ve had a long-standing relationship with Merryland Farms, selling their organic beef for almost a decade and offering a selection of their frozen steaks, roasts, and ground beef. We can vouch for their beef firsthand – we make our Shepherd’s Pie with it. And if you have eaten their stewing beef and wonder how it’s so tender? It’s cut from sirloin steak. Try it and taste the difference from Ontario’s Merrylynd Farms.

Stouffville Strawberry Festival

Thurs. June 27 to Mon. July 1

The Strawberry Festival is the big event of the year in Stouffville and this year’s schedule has lots of fun for all ages.  Start off with theThursday evening Lion’s Beef BBQ, Fridayevening outdoor movie, the Saturday street Market, the strawberry pie and jam contest, street mini-putt, midway rides, pony rides, a car show, fireworks on Monday night and more!

Strawberry Festival Schedule

Reesor Farm News

Reesor Farm Market at 10825 Ninth Line, Markham is now open for the season. Telephone 905-640-4568 for up-to-date information about the market and about Our Pick Your Own strawberry fields which will open about June 25.

It takes a team to raise strawberries. Sarah, Caleb, Elise, Grahame and Cameron were out doing the final weeding in this year’s strawberry fields in mid-June.

Do you love to pick your own strawberries?  Or do you want to introduce your children or  nieces and nephews to the pleasures of picking strawberries?    You can bring your own containers to our strawberry fields or we have baskets for purchase.   We also have a full selection of Ontario vegetables and fruits, and our own baking and preserves at our Farm Market.