12147 Corey Lake Road, Three Rivers, Michigan (269) 244-5690

Sweet Corn Coming Out of Our Ears!!

Sweet corn is here!  Same pricing as last year, $5 dozen, or 5 dozen (a bushel) for $20. Usually as the season begins, the first picking yields only a few bushel, we sell out early…but not the case this time. The heat has brought it in with a bang! We picked 75 bushel this morning and could have kept going.   We do a lot of succession planting here, which means during the spring we plant things seven days to two weeks apart, especially things like corn and green beans, with the goal being that they will be spaced such that when one planting finishes, the next is ready—-(yes all the things we do behind the scenes to keep produce coming for you!)  But….when a heat wave like this week’s comes, all bets are off and what happens is that two plantings come in at the same time.


And such is the case right now! With fields overflowing, this puts farmers like us in a dilemma, if we can’t sell it, do we pick it or leave it in the field?

We live in a world where people go hungry, and we cannot bear to leave food in the field if we can help it. Our farm philosophy has been to help others wherever we can, so our desire is to pick it before it spoils and get it to food banks. Here’s how you can help us help others, if you feel so inclined. For customers who would like to help, for every one dozen of corn you buy at $5, if you want to put an additional $5 towards helping others, we will go pick, pack and donate two dozen on your behalf. We feel so strange about asking for money for this, but we pay our employees fair wages for their work and it helps us cover that cost so that we can afford to donate a substantial amount.

We will have a sign up sheet for this and provide a list of names to the food bank for all who helped with this – we want to be accountable to you and to them. Because of times like these, we maintain connections to all area food banks as well as Loaves & Fishes in Kalamazoo which distributes out even further. Together, we can help make a difference and put fresh sweet corn on someone’s empty plate. We thank everyone who is able to help us with this effort, and understand if you can’t.

Here’s what we have at the market now:

  • Broccoli
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Cut Flowers
  • Eggplant
  • Fresh Cut or “Cut Your Own” Herbs
  • Fresh Dug Potatoes: Yukon Gold, Red Norland and Adirondack Blue
  • Field Cucumbers and Small Pickling Cukes
  • Greenhouse Tomatoes
  • Green Beans
  • Peppers
  • Onions:
  • Shell-Out Peas
  • Sweet Corn
  • Zucchini and Yellow Squash

Large quantities: For those who want to can or freeze this summer, we have started lists for up to bushel sizes of  peppers, pickling cucumbers, zucchini, yellow squash and tomatoes. You can add your name when here or call us at 269-244-5690. Sweet corn ($20/bu) and green beans ($30/bu) are available by the bushel now, you don’t need to be on a list, but it would help us if you call in advance so we can get them ready. If you would like to pick your own green beans, they are $16 for pick your own (if we pick they are $30). If you pick green beans and would like to pick extra for the food bank, we’d be grateful!

so many green beans!

so many green beans!

Picked Blueberries: $26 for a 10-lb box, $13.50 for a 5-lb box, $5 a quart and $3 a pint. Some are coming out of our field and again this year we will be supplementing from Brookside Farms in Paw Paw, Michigan as we have done in previous years.

  • U-PIck Blueberries: We have a relatively small field compared to most major blueberry growers (only three acres), so our u-pick blueberries are for folks who just want to come over to get a few pounds or so at a time and pick them because they want the fun experience! In order to allow everyone to have a chance to pick some, we are limiting the picking to 10 pounds per group until more are ready. We are finishing the  “Duke” berries now this is a large berry, and starting the “Jersey” berry which is a smaller berry. If we get picked out, we will close to allow the berries to ripen up again. So, you may want to call ahead to make sure our u-pick patch is open, 269-244-5690.
    • The hours for u-pick will be 8 until 5:45 each day, must be finished and checked out by 6 back at market.
    • Pricing will be $2.00 a pound to pick (this makes it about $3.50 a quart)
    • We will have them off and on probably through most of the month of July
    • We have buckets for you to pick in and boxes to send them home in
    • For anyone who wants large quantities, we would recommend Brookside Farms as a great place to go. They are located in Paw Paw, their phone number is 269-657-3500 or find them online at:  http://brooksidefarmsmi.com/

Becca’s certified organic produce: Kale, eggplant, green beans, slicer tomatoes, “single serving” cabbage, bunching onions and cherry tomatoes. Some of this is in limited quantities so please call ahead and place an order if you want any of these items.

Peaches and cantaloupe are about a week away. Until we start the peach harvest, we are not sure how many we will have to sell by the bushel, but for sure will be selling them in small eating quantities. We have started a list, and if you would like to order by the bushel, we can get your name down and call you when we know more.

Cantaloupe are sizing

Cantaloupe are sizing

Peaches are turning color

Peaches are turning color

Bakery offerings for the weekend will be:

  • Cookies: Cut Out Sugar, Zucchini Chocolate Chip, Monster (chocolate chips, M&M’s peanut butter and oatmeal), Iced Lemon, Triple Berry, Peanut Butter, Ginger Molasses, and Oatmeal Raisin. PS: the zucchini chocolate chip cookies are Beth’s absolute favorite–you have to try!
  • Pies: Blueberry, Cherry, Peach, Rhubarb, and Strawberry Rhubarb. We will have fresh Blueberry Glaze Pies and raspberry-cream pies available Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
  • Bread: Whole Wheat, Honey Oat, Cinnamon, Italian, Whole Grain, Vegetable and Tuscan, as well as Hamburger Buns, Hot Dog Buns, and Focaccia Bread. We are partnering with La Brea bakery on the following breads: Semolina Cheese, Rosemary Olive Oil, Roasted Garlic Loaf, and Toasted Sunflower Honey.  We are trying to keep up making our popular Zucchini-Blueberry Bread – definitely try some if you can get your hands on a loaf! They sell out fast.
  • Cinnamon Rolls and Pecan Sticky Buns
  • Assorted Dessert Bars
  • Mini Cupcakes
  • Slushies: Concord and Niagara Grape Blend and Our Own Apple Cider
  • Muffins: Double Dutch Chocolate, Cherry Almond, Pistachio, Wild Berry, Lemon Poppy Seed, Raisin Bran, and Banana Nut
  • Donuts: We will have our Cherry, Blueberry and Buttermilk Cake Donuts available Friday, Saturday, Sunday.  We also have our Chocolate Iced Yeast Donuts as well as Bavarian Cream-Filled Long Johns, Raspberry-Filled Bismarks and Cherry Fritters!
Blueberry-zucchini bread coming out of the oven, we can't seem to make enough of these!

Blueberry-zucchini bread coming out of the oven, we can’t seem to make enough of these!

Brandy and Hard Cider: It is supposed to be 95 on Saturday and we have to say – a nice cold cider out of the cooler tastes pretty good on hot afternoons. We might also recommend a Michigan Mojito made with our Blueberry Hard Cider in place of the club soda and sugar, and 2D Niagara Brandy in place of the rum. Serve it with mint from the herb garden over ice and voila, a refreshing beverage for this heat wave!

We have our usual line of brandies made exclusively from estate-grown produce, including our ever-popular oak aged apple brandy. Made right here, we have Blueberry, Sweet, Strawberry, Dry, and Hopped Hard Ciders for sale in 12 and 22 oz. bottles.We also have Double Cherry Wine, Kaiser Cyser, and Tart Cherry Hard Cider in 750mL bottles. If you’d like to try before you buy, we’ll have free tasting at the market from 1 to 3 on Saturday. You can also call and schedule a tour any time: 269 244 5690.  

Local Products:  We try to offer as many local and Michigan made products as we can.

  • Mollie’s Clay Vessels, a Flint based artist who does one of a kind bowls, planters, vases and more
  • Meat from Mill Lake Farms, http://www.coreylakeorchards.com/other-products/mill-lake-farm-meats/.  We have acquired a new freezer so you can find the meat easier, and will soon be stocking “take and bake” pies and other goodies. We do have a shortage on some meat items right now (particularly steak) but will have more the last week of July hopefully.
  • Yogurt from Mattawan Creamery
  • Unique cards made by 4 area artists
  • “Flatware” flowers and lady bugs made by our neighbor Dave
  • Honey and maple syrup
  • Ruth’s pecan and cashew brittle
  • Ladd’s Jalapeno Mustard (made with peppers grown here on the farm!)
  • Artisan Cheese from Remy Picot (Benton Harbor)
  • Michigan shaped chairs with matching Upper Peninsula tables (Kalamazoo)
  • Eggs (Kalamazoo)
  • Detroit Bold Coffee Company coffee (Detroit)
  • Dried blueberries and cherries (Traverse City)
  • 4 flavors of Great Lakes Chips (Traverse City)
  • 5 varieties of Michaelene’s granola (Clarkston)
  • Boxed (totally recyclable) water (Grand Rapids)

Happenings on the farm this week:

This was another heavy harvest week, made unbearable some days by the heat.

Load after load of green beans coming in.

Load after load of green beans coming in.

We also planted 100 new sweet cherry trees, something usually not done in July, but getting fruit trees these days means ordering out several years in advance.  We were fortunate to come across a MSU professor who had too many and offered them out to Michigan farms at an amazing price so we jumped on the chance to get them in and not wait for the order we had for 2018.  The hardest part was getting through the dry, hard ground….not easy.

Not much now, but hopefully in 5 years our customers will be picking cherries from these!

Not much now, but hopefully in 5 years our customers will be picking cherries from these!

And….the drought we are in forced us to put permanent irrigation down in our peach orchards….an expense we hope will pay off with larger peaches when Mother Nature gives us these tough years.

No, these are not snakes, but our crew getting the irrigation lines pulled thru the orchard.

No, these are not snakes, but our crew getting the irrigation lines pulled through the orchard.

Becca decided to take action on ‘too much” zucchini. From Becca:

A one-two punch of recent heat waves and a thriving local deer population has taken out two of my lettuce plantings, which means we’re going to be in a lettuce drought for a bit. In lieu of sadness, I’ve decided to take it as a challenge to make different salads out of peak summer vegetables. Particularly: zucchini. Excepting various sweet zucchini breads, I don’t like zucchini. I’ve had it fried, frittered, grilled, sauteed, raw, casseroled, whatever. And every time, I think that any other comparable vegetable would have been a better choice. It’s a personal preference. But I decided to grow up this week: instead of glaring at the zucchini sitting on the market counter, I glared at it as I brought it into my kitchen. After digging through recipes, I decided to combine a few and come up with a recipe of my own based on what we have at the market. **See below. The verdict? This recipe was good. Good enough to share with you all. Not good enough to turn me into a zucchini fan. I’ll try again next week and PLEASE, feel free to send me your best zucchini recipes! I’m keeping my mind open.

Reminder, this is the weekend of the Huss Future Festival, we will have produce and baked good there. It is a fun event, Saturday, July 23rd:  https://www.hussproject.com/event/huss-future-festival-2016.

Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards thanks you for buying local.    And thanks in advance for helping us with our ‘too much sweet corn problem!”

**Becca’s recipe:

Recipe One: Corn and Zucchini Salad (serves 5-7 people)
4 Pasilla (“Holy Mole”) Peppers (these aren’t that spicy but if you’re sensitive to heat, substitute 10 Sweet Banana Peppers)
1/2 lb. Red Russian Kale
5 Ears of Corn
2 Zucchini (Medium)
4 oz. Smoked Gouda (about half of one of the chunks we sell at the market)
1 oz. Basil
1 Tomato
Olive Oil
Heat a medium frying pan with a tablespoon of your oil of choice. Slice pasilla peppers length-wise into thin strips and chop strips into 1-2 inch pieces. De-stem and shred the kale by hand (no need to be fancy with this.) Put the peppers and kale into the frying pan, add 1/2 tsp. of salt, and cook on high heat for two minutes, then on low-medium heat for ten minutes, stirring occasionally.
Heat a large frying pan with a tablespoon of your oil of choice. Cut corn from the cob and put in the frying pan. Cook on medium-high heat for two or three minutes until the corn is light brown on one side. Turn heat off. (NOTE: you could also grill the corn in this step! I just don’t have a grill.)
Slice the zucchini very thin, chop the basil, and grate the gouda. Toss in a large bowl with enough olive oil to keep the zucchini slices from sticking together. Add the corn, kale/peppers, salt/pepper to taste, and mix well. Chill in the fridge if desired. Serve with tomato slices on top. Try and decide if you like zucchini yet.
(If I ever make this again I’ll probably throw in a little dill.)