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

Tag Archive: strawberries

End of June Update

Another month gone and when June leaves, it takes strawberries with it.  We are grateful for the wonderful strawberry season we had that was around for most of June.  The 3 inches of rain we got this week took its toll on them, but thankfully came as they were just ending.  Our last day for U-Pick strawberries will be Friday, June 27th from 8 until 11.  We will try to pick Friday and Saturday to have some for the weekend.  It will be hard for all of us to wait another year for strawberries!

Everyone is asking “what’s next?”  Normally we would be just starting to pick sweet cherries, but due to the severe winter and the May frost we lost 95% of our sweet cherry crop. The 5% we had left have been enjoyed by the birds and unfortunately, the rain this week made what was left crack and split.

U-Pick Sour Cherries:   We do have a fairly good crop of tart cherries this year, we lost some to the frost but not all. We will open the Sour cherries for U-Pick on Sunday, June 29th. The type of tart cherry we grow is Montmorency.  They are typically used for pies, tarts, or making jelly, but some people like to eat them and enjoy their tartness. Becca especially likes to eat them frozen.

  • Pricing: $1.00 per pound to pick, 75 cents per pound for 50 pounds or over
  • U-Pick Hours:  8 – 6 daily, please be finished picking by 5:45 pm to be back to the market by 6pm.
  • We will be open each day until they are gone. (Maybe a week? Depends on how many people come out to pick.)
  • The sour cherry trees are about 10 – 20 feet tall. For good picking, you should bring your own ladder.
  • Be sure to dress appropriately (closed shoes, long pants and sleeves) as you many run into poison ivy or prickly plants in the orchard area, among other hazards.
  • Please bring your own containers. We have buckets you may borrow to pick in, then you can transfer to your own containers (bowls, tubs, buckets, etc.)
  • Check in at the market first for directions and to weigh the containers you are picking in.

Summer vegetables:  We are supplementing the market right now with produce purchased from local growers in Indiana, whose growing season is a touch ahead of ours.  Right now in the market we have cucumbers, zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower, summer squash, red potatoes, onions, cabbage, lettuce and peas. We are mixing this with produce that’s starting to come in out of our own fields.

This weekend in the bakery we will have:   

  • Pies: apple, blueberry, cherry,  choco-butter (chocolate/peanut butter), rhubarb,  strawberry rhubarb, banana cream, and coconut cream. 
  • Cookies: frog and flower shaped cut outs, monster (oatmeal, choc chips, m&m’s and peanut butter) zucchini chocolate chip (Beth’s favorite!!) and lemon.
  • Bread: 12 grain, whole wheat, cinnamon.
  • Cinnamon rolls and sticky buns.
  • Donuts: blueberry, buttermilk, and cherry.
  • Slushies: Apple cider and white grape cherry.
  • If you would like to reserve any baked goods please call us at (269) 244-5690.

A final note from the bakers: This weekend in the bakery we will have two new pies: Banana Cream, and Coconut Cream. We have had a lot of people ask for these in the past, to which we would answer “but we don’t grow bananas or coconut!” So what’s the exception this year? With fruit in short supply this year we are trying to make all of our own fruit we froze last year stretch to as many pies all year as possible! So come on out this weekend and try a banana cream or coconut cream pie. You never know, you may just find a new favorite!

See you this weekend!– The Bakers

Update from Becca: Back from my week away! Reflecting upon my weedy garden, I thought, well, the only natural ecosystems with swaths of bare ground are deserts and rocky cliff sides and mountains, so I won’t worry about too many of these weeds. Snow peas and sugar peas coming in, kohlrabi on its way out. Still going strong are kale, chard, lettuce, cilantro, basil, radishes, and some other greens, as well as the u-pick herb garden.

I’m starting to see my first jalapeno, bell, and cayenne peppers. The predatory beetles and bees abound in my buckwheat. I’m hoping my tomatoes ripen up soon! (And I also hope that the kids going down the slide continue to stop before they catapult straight into my several rows of tomatoes. Kids have been awesome so far, but one of these days I’m afraid it’ll happen…) I’m crossing my fingers for some carrots and callaloo soon. As always, call ahead if you want anything special from the yarden set aside for you.

So everyone at Corey Lake Orchards thanks you for buying local and we hope to see you soon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

June means strawberries! We pick, u-pick, and more.

Asparagus will be in season for about another week to ten days. Our asparagus field is finished for the year, but we are bringing it in from another farm in town for the rest of the season. Greenhouse tomatoes and cucumbers are really coming in now. We have a tomato special running right now on tomatoes: 3 pounds for $5.

This is what happens when we let our asparagus go to seed to replenish the field.

Lots of tomatoes!

Bedding plants and hanging baskets: We are winding down the plant season, so if you have not gotten yours for the garden yet, come soon. We have plenty of pepper, tomato, melon, and cucumber plants for sale.

This weekend in the bakery we will have:

  • Pies: apple, blueberry, blueberry rhubarb, cherry, chocolate, choco-butter (chocolate/peanut butter), peanut butter, rhubarb, and strawberry rhubarb.
  • Cookies: frog shaped cut outs, monster (oatmeal, choc chips, m&m’s and peanut butter) and lemon.
  • Bread: 12 grain, whole wheat, cinnamon.
  • Cinnamon rolls and sticky buns.
  • Donuts: blueberry, buttermilk, and cherry.
  • Brownies: frosted chocolate and turtle.
  • Slushies: Apple cider and black cherry concord grape blend.
  • If you would like to reserve any baked goods please call us at (269) 244-5690.

A final note from the bakers: This weekend we will be bringing back the ever-so-popular brownies we made last year. Also, with many customers asking us to put the peanut butter and chocolate pies into one, we created a new one: choco-butter pie. If you are in need of a serious chocolate fix this weekend, come to the bakery, we’ll be able to help!! See you this weekend. -The Bakers

June gets everyone thinking about fresh Michigan strawberries.

The first strawberries of 2014! Sold quickly on Wednesday.

Our strawberry crop looks great so far this year. The rains are helping to them to be nicely sized and the forecast for the next several weeks is the kind of weather which strawberries like (cooler nights with hot, but not too hot days). We will be picking a few quarts daily now of the early variety, quantities are very low still, so if you are trying to get some, it is best to call ahead and have us hold them for you if we have them. (269-244-5690.)

We are taking orders now for picked strawberries. Please call (269-244-5690) or email us your order and we will call you when we have them picked. Already picked strawberries will be $3.25 a quart this year or a flat of picked berries (8 quarts) is $24.00 ($3.00 a quart).

U-Pick strawberries will be starting soon! Please check back around June 11th for a better idea on when the u-pick might open.

  • U-pick strawberry pricing will be $1.75 quart. Please bring quart containers if you have them, if not, you may borrow ours for picking and bring your containers (bowls, tubs, etc.) to get the strawberries home.
  • We have doubled the size of our u-pick berry field from previous years in order to have more berries available for those who want to pick their own.
  • If you are trying to pick larger quantities of berries (over 5 cases or 80 quarts), please call us in advance and we would like to work with you to schedule you in on a day when we have lots of berry availability. Ask to be put on our “large quantity list.” 269-244-5690.
  • We welcome customers who want to take advantage of being on a farm and enjoying the U-Pick “experience.” We know there are many families who would like to have their children understand where their food comes from and how it grows. For this group, the experience is almost more important than how many berries are picked. If you are newcomers to strawberry picking, let us know when you arrive and we will give your family information on how berries grow and show you how to pick them.

U-Pick Strawberry times:

  • We will open the field at 8:00 am and it will remain open until we are picked out or until 12:00 pm daily
  • We are offering two afternoon picking options this year: Mondays and Wednesdays from 4 pm to 6 pm.
  • We plan to open each day weather permitting, closing only for berries to ripen if the weather turns cold. If we close the field for ripening, we will make that decision the day before, so please call us the day/night before you plan to come to make sure we are picking that day. For safety, we will close the field during lightning or a thunderstorm.

From Becca’s Garden:

I picked cilantro today! This will be available on the market from now on (good to pair with those greenhouse tomatoes). This weekend, I will have chard, romaine lettuce, salad mix lettuce, curly kale, red Russian Kale (like curly, but a bit sweeter), Tuscan kale (also called lacinato or dinosaur kale), and a few other things. I anticipate the herb garden should be ready for harvest within a week: basil, lemon balm, mint, thyme, lovage, and oregano are available now with the cilantro for anyone interested. The peas are blooming, the carrots are forming, and I’m a happy gardener. As the heat picks up, so do the challenges of organic garden management, but mostly things are doing well. If you would like any naturally grown produce set aside for you, please call and let us know: (269) 244-5690.

Heat tolerant Simpson lettuce is thriving right now!

The garden and the market.

Happenings on the farm this week: Wasn’t the weather truly delightful this past weekend? Maybe because of the post-winter syndrome it just seemed even better than normal. Everyone has a different way of gaging the temperature: Is it a light jacket day, can we go in the lake yet, do we run AC or not…..but on the farm, we look at growing degree days. Growing degree days (abbreviated GDD) is a way of assigning a heat value to each day. The values are added together to give an estimate of the amount of seasonal growth our crops have achieved. With the exceptional summer-like days we had last week, the growing degree days for this year have now caught us up from the cold winter and late spring…..so what that means is while we thought things would be late, the crop seasons will be about at their normal timing this year (which is probably all you really wanted to know anyways)!

45,000 onions growing strong.

This past week we spent time working on maintaining the orchards and vineyards. We do an annual vine removal from the fruit trees and a sucker removal from the bottom of the grape trunks. The last several days we have done a “crawl through” of the strawberry fields removing weeds that might have sprouted up that can get in the way of the berries ripening and harvest. All of these jobs are done manually, difficult tasks but necessary. Our sensitive cucumbers and cantaloupe plants did not like the strong winds and sun from last weekend, so this week we had to replace them all with new plants. We’re looking forward to a good melon crop this year.

New cucumber plants.

Grape suckers must be taken off this time of year to help the grapevines thrive next year.

We have loved seeing all of our customers back out at the market. Thank you so much for coming to Corey Lake Orchards for your produce and for buying local.

End of May update

Produce available on the market this weekend includes asparagus, rhubarb, romaine lettuce, salad mix, spinach, kale, and cucumbers/tomatoes from our greenhouse.

We are starting to bring in the long English cucumbers from the greenhouse now

Asparagus Update: We expect to have asparagus on the market until mid-June, so keep enjoying it while it is in season.

Strawberries: We will have a great crop of strawberries and it looks like they will ready by the middle of June for U-Pick and pre-picked. We are now taking orders for picked strawberries. The price is the same as last years:  $3.25 quart or $24.00 for a flat of 8 quarts.  Call us if you would like to get on our list:  269-244-5690.

Bedding Plants and Flowers: We have flats of vegetables, tomatoes, flowers and herbs that you can mix and match for your gardening needs. We have a good selection of hanging baskets and pre-made flower arrangements in unique pots.  Hurry out, we will not be getting any more in this year.

Bakery: This weekend in the bakery we will have available: 

  • Cookies: frog shaped cut outs, monster (oatmeal, M&M’s, choc, chips and peanut butter)  and lemon.
  •  Pies: Apple, blueberry, blueberry-rhubarb, cherry, peanut butter, rhubarb, and strawberry-rhubarb.
  •  Bread: 12 grain, whole wheat, cinnamon. Cinnamon rolls, and sticky buns.
  • Donuts: blueberry, buttermilk, and cherry.
  • Frozen slushies: apple cider and black cherry Concord grape

If you would like to reserve any baked goods please call us at 269-244-5690.

  • A final note from the bakers: We were really pleased that the blueberry-rhubarb pies were such a hit!! It was our top selling pie all weekend long (even surpassing our always popular strawberry rhubarb)! A big thank you to everyone who made it out on such a beautiful weekend. You kept us very busy and the donut machine in constant motion.
  • We have some good news, today we installed a freezer in the front area of the bakery. We will be offering “take and bake” frozen pies! These will be our famous home-made pies, complete with baking instructions. All you need to do is put it in your oven.  You can now have warm pie for dessert, and the same aroma you smell in our bakery should be in your own kitchen.

Update from Becca: The front garden is almost fully planted for the summer , and those of you here the past week have probably noticed that we planted the terrace garden east of the market. I seeded most of my bedding plants in March and April, so it has really been satisfying to get the majority of them in the ground. If you drop by the market, you will see me weeding furiously most days.

A note: if your family kitchen generates a lot of food scraps (coffee grounds, egg shells, asparagus ends, vegetable peels, etc.), please talk to me about adding that waste to my compost pile! I’d love to put it to good use rather than thrown out in the trash. Leave me a message at the market or call me for more information. (269) 244-5690.

Bee Update: We have two beekeepers managing nearly 40 hives at various locations on our farm. With honeybees pollinating a third of the food we eat, and nearly 100% of what we grow here at Corey Lake Orchards, this insect is very critical to our survival, and yet as you’ve probably seen in the news, honeybees are struggling to survive.

On our farm, they gather nectar and pollen from the plants and make cherries, apples etc. for us in the process. They also make honey which we sell at the market (packaged in the honey bears with hats). You can learn more about bees, and how we can all help them, in about a month at our upcoming ‘Meet the Beekeepers’ sessions at the market. You will meet my sister Charlotte (the one brave enough to take off her hood for the picture), who speaks locally and nationally about honeybees (for more info, see www.hubbardhive.com) Weather permitting she’ll bring live bees in a cage and talk about them and answer questions.

Charlotte and crew keeping bees in April.

Happenings on the farm this week: 

It was actually a slow week on the farm, having gotten everything planted last week. One of our absolute favorite things was watching it rain on Tuesday–we got a half an inch, which our orchards, vineyards and plants were most thankful for. On the cooler mornings, our crew worked in the greenhouse, continuing to train our already very tall tomato plants to grow taller….we now have to use a step ladder to continue to tie them to the trellises!

Very tall tomato plants, 5-29-14

Some of the clusters of tomatoes are so large we have to use clips to hold up their weight.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On our daily farm checks, we have been scrutinizing the “fruit set” on our crops. We are now able to estimate the damage that was caused to our fruit by a “trifecta” of events—the trees went into winter stressed from how much they produced in 2013, the severe winter (many days at -20 degrees) caused “winter injury” to trees and bushes, and the frost event on May 15th/16th froze out what was in bloom at that time. Many of you have commented you have seen your own bushes and flowers not “coming back” or producing any flowers this year….much of this is due to winter injury.  So far, this is what we think we will have:

  • Strawberries:  Great crop!
  • Sweet Cherries:  About 5% of normal crop
  • Tart Cherries:  About 40% of normal crop
  • Blueberries:  About 60% of normal crop (and we were very lucky)
  • Peaches:  No peaches
  • Plums: About 25% of normal crop
  • Pears: About 25% of normal crop
  • Apples: Variety dependent, about 50% overall
  • White Niagara Grapes:  25% of normal crop
  • Purple Concord Grapes:  60% of normal crop

We’re providing these estimates to you now and will update them as we learn more.  For those of you who can and freeze a lot of fruit, you may want to ration some fruits we will be short of.

Blueberries blooming on 5-29-14, their blossom is such a delicate bell-shaped blossom–beautiful

Earli-blaze apples are just loaded this year, it is an early summer apple, tart, and great for pies and sauce

We have all endured these kind of years before (remember 2012?) so this will be another year where we will all learn to like vegetables even more than we do now!!  Despite the shortage of fruit, we remain committed to continuing to give you a great farm experience, delicious fresh-picked fruits and vegetables and the very best from our bakery.  We value you as a customer and we truly appreciate your business and buying local.

Thanks—from everyone at Corey Lake Orchards

 

 

Happy 4th of July Week!!

Picked Sweet Cherries:  We still have picked sweet cherries for sale in the market for $4.00 a quart.  However, they are going fast and may only last a few more days.

U-Pick Sweet cherries:  We opened for U-Pick on Saturday, 6-22 and about one half of them have been picked so far.    There are still some to pick, but they are up in the tops of the trees now requiring a tall ladder and perseverance!  Due to the heavy rains this week, some have started to split.  There are more red and yellow sweet cherries than black cherries available, but try them, they are just as good.  See** below for more info.

Come try the yellow sweet cherries, there are still plenty to pick

 

U-Pick Sour Cherries:  We  opened the Sour (tart) cherry orchard on Wednesday, June 26th and there are still plenty to pick.  Please bring a step ladder for better picking.  See more information below:***

You can check our facebook page or the website for an update on cherry picking or call us at 269-244-5690.

Already picked Sour cherries:

  • Available in the market now for $3.00 a quart
  • Due to the small crop of sour cherries available at our orchard, we will be bringing a large quantity in from another local farm around July 6th.    If you would like to order these, please call us and let us know how many pounds you are interested in.  269-244-5690.

Strawberries are now done for the year.  We are extremely grateful for the weather during strawberry season which allowed us to have the best strawberries we have had in years.  We also thank our many customers who came out to pick or bought them already picked.  It will be hard to go without fresh strawberries for another whole year……

Thank to the many families who had fun picking our berries this year

Tomatoes and summer vegetables:  Our own greenhouse tomatoes and cucumbers have slowed down, so we are bringing in some from other local greenhouses until the yield picks back up.  We are just starting to pick some zucchini and summer squash, but are also bringing some in this weekend from a local farm in Indiana (earlier growing season).  We are now picking lettuce, kale, swiss chard and peas daily.   So come stock up on fresh vegetables!

Blueberries:  We expect blueberries to start sometime this coming week.  Check back around July 3rd for more information.

Our blueberry bushes on 6-26-13—getting close!

Bakery update:  Well, work continues to progress on the bakery, drywall and painting is now complete so that equipment installation can begin next week.  We remain hopeful for a mid-July opening.

 

Michaela checking the bakery equipment as it gets delivered

Michaela with Anthony, from Walking Tall Drywall & Construction, who just finished the drywall and paint for the bakery

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Baked goods:  Despite the bakery not being ready, Michaela and her mother Patti will be baking all week.  This weekend will begin our “Fourth of July” week.  We will have baked goods this weekend (June 28-30), all next week (July 1-4), and the weekend after (July 5-7).

  • Pies we will have:  Blueberry,  Cherry,  Cherry Berry,  Peach,  Strawberry Rhubarb
  • Cookies: Red, White, and Blue frosted Cut Outs, Monster,  Lemon
  • Breads: Whole Wheat, Cinnamon, Vegetable
  • Cinnamon Rolls

Happenings on the farm this week:  We loved dumping out the rain gauge so often this week, 3 inches in total!   This was such a timely and great rain.  This did wonders in the orchards and vineyards especially, it seemed as if the fruit doubled in size just in a week.  Between the rain showers, we started hand-thinning some varieties of apples this week.  Coming off of the poor crop we had in 2012, –we much more appreciated having the problem of “too many.  ”

Hand thinning Honeycrisp apples on 6-27-13

A pile of little apples on the ground–the result of a good thinning job

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Work commenced on our parking lot this week, which after the rains, turned into a fishing pond/swimming pool!

The parking lot preparation before the rain

Parking lot after the rain, Hubbard lake?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We decided to pick some strawberries to let Bruce try his hand at making strawberry brandy.  Bruce will be in the Brandy House on Saturday from 1 – 4.  The fermenting berries smell wonderful, come check it out!

Mmmmm, smashed strawberries for brandy

Unloading buckets of berries for brandy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As always, we thank you for buying local and hope to see you at the farm during the 4th of July week!  Beth and everyone at Corey Lake Orchards

 

**Sweet Cherry Picking information:

  • Pricing: $1.50 per pound to pick
  • Picking hours are 8 – 6 daily, we ask that you finish picking by 6:00 pm.
  • Varieties:  We have four different kinds  in our small orchard across the street  from our market.   We have several colors:  Dark red (black),  Red, Yellow, and Red/Yellow blush.  In addition, be aware that the recent rains have caused some trees to have spoilage issues.
  • The sweet cherry trees are very tall (15 – 25 feet).   Please bring your own ladder.
  • Be sure to dress appropriately (closed shoes, long pants and sleeves) as you may run into poison ivy/sumac in the orchard area, among other hazards.
  • Please bring your own containers.  We have buckets you may borrow to pick in, then you can transfer to your own containers (bowls, tubs,   buckets, etc.)
  • Check in at the market first for directions and to weigh the containers you are picking in.

 

 

***U-Pick Sour Cherry information:

  • Pricing: $1.00 per pound to pick, 75  cents per pound for 50 pounds or over
  • U-Pick Hours:  8 – 6 daily, please be finished picking by 6 pm.
  • The sour cherry trees are about 10 – 20 feet tall.   For good picking, you should bring your own ladder.
  • Be sure to dress appropriately (closed shoes, long pants and  sleeves) as you many run into poison ivy/sumac in the orchard area,  among other hazards.
  • Please bring your own containers.  We have buckets you may borrow to  pick in, then you can transfer to your own containers (bowls, tubs,  buckets, etc.)
  • Check in at the market first for directions and to weigh the containers you are picking in.
  • We only have about 25% of a crop this year due to the Mother’s Day frost event

 

Happy Father’s Day Weekend!

Picked Strawberries are available in the market daily now at $3.25 a quart.   We are still taking orders for larger quantities of picked berries, pricing will be:

  • a flat of picked berries (8 quarts) is $24.00 ($3.00 a quart)
  • or a case of picked berries (16 quarts) for $44.00 ($2.75 quart)

Please call in advance and we will call you when they are available.  We are about half way through filling our orders.

Strawberry U-Pick Information:    Our U-Pick berries are ready now. We have been open for 2 days and picking is very good right now.   We expect the U-Pick season to last about 10 days.

  • U-Pick Strawberry times:  We will open the field at 8:00 am  and it will remain open until we are picked out or until 11:00 am.  
  • Our goal is to always have good picking for our customers.  So we will close the field when all the picking for that day is complete.  Depending on how many people come out in a given day, there could be some days that we will close before 11 am.    Picking will be on a first come, first serve basis. Given the cooler weather this June, we may have to close on certain days for ripening. 
  • To get the latest picking information, check our website, our facebook  page or our answering machine.  You can call the night before or the morning you are trying to come to make sure we are open.  With the price of gas, we wouldn’t want anyone to make a trip only to find out we are closed!
  • Location:  The strawberry fields are located on AL Jones Road, between Corey Lake Road and M-60.   You may go directly there, just look for the signs as to where we are picking each day.
  • U-Pick Strawberry pricing will be  $1.50 quart.  Please bring quart containers if you have them, if not, you may purchase or borrow ours but bring containers (bowls, tubs, etc.) to put them in to take home.
  • We are trying something new this year which is dedicating a section of the field for those who want to come out for the farm and U-Pick “experience.”  We know there are many families who would like to have their children understand where their food comes from and how it grows.    For this group, the “experience” is almost more important than how many berries are picked.  If you fall into this category, we will give your family information on how berries grow and show you how to pick them.  When picking in this section, each person picking will be allowed to pick up to one quart so we can hopefully accommodate all who come.
  • Please dress for strawberry picking!  Due to the rains this week there is plenty of mud.  The foliage is wet in the mornings so long pants and long sleeves along with rain boots is suggested.
  • If you are trying to pick larger quantities of berries (over 5 cases or 80 quarts), please call us in advance and we would like to try to work with you to schedule you in on a day when we have lots of berry availability.  Ask to be put on our “large quantity list.”  269-244-5690.

Greenhouse tomatoes and cucumbers:  We are picking these daily now.  This weekend we will start pulling our green onions, yellow and white with long green stems.  We hope to pick Kale, Swiss Chard and lettuce as well.

Baked Goods available this weekend: 

  • Blueberry, cherry, cherry berry, peach, and strawberry rhubarb pies.
  • Baseball cutout cookies that say #1 Dad,  lemon and monster cookies.
  • Cinnamon rolls, cinnamon bread, White bread (no 12 grain).
  • Strawberry shortcake.

Asparagus:  This will be the last weekend for asparagus.

Coming soon:  Cut your own Herb garden.  For those who like to use fresh herbs, check out our herb garden in the middle of the driveway by the pine tree.  We are growing virtually every kind of herb we could get seed for.  Some are ready now, the rest soon.

Brandy House Tours and Tasting:  Saturday from 1 -4.  Bruce would love to have you come out.

Michaela’s weekly bakery update.  The bakery is progressing but we lost a little time this week with some construction issues.  So we will try to make up time and still hope to open some time in July.  This week I have decided to discuss our bread.  We make all of our bread fresh from scratch using old recipes from my great-grandma Susie.  My great-grandma had eight children and a husband to feed during the great depression, so to make it by on what little money they had, she would bake bread every other day using a “start” from each batch, making sure she would not need to buy yeast.  We unfortunately are not able to keep starts to make our bread out of, instead we use fresh yeast for every batch.  For those of you curious about our bread making process, here are a few pictures of us making it this morning.

Mixing the dough by hand helps prevent over working that would cause the bread to be tough.

Kneading the dough to bring all the ingredients together.

Throwing the dough allows the middle to come to the outside to ensure everything is evenly distributed.

A loaf of bread ready to be baked and then enjoyed by a happy customer!

This is how we make all of our breads every week!  Making bread is our second favorite thing to do (second only to pies!!).  It is our love for the wonderful aroma of fresh baked bread that gets us going every morning!  We start baking now around 5:30 AM, and the smell of bread and a good strong cup of coffee keep us going until 10:00 PM!!!!

For all the Fathers out there, Happy Fathers day from the bakers!  Michaela and Patti

Happenings on the farm this week.  We were thrilled by the 1 and 1/2 inch of rain we got this week.  Orchards, vineyards and our field crops seemed to double in size before our very eyes, (and we were thankful not to have to move irrigation pipes!!)    The weeds seemed to quadruple so our attack to keep up with them was in full tilt. We lamented at the deer eating our row of lettuce–in broad daylight as we watched them. (sorry it seems as if they prefer red-leaf and have eaten at least 25 heads…)  The crew spent much of the week picking strawberries,  amazed at how large and plentiful the berries are this year.  Even my Dad said this was the best strawberry crop he can remember in 52 years–perfect foliage–but of course he admonished us over the number of weeds!

We are delighted that strawberries came at the “normal” time this year so they can be available for Father’s Day weekend, graduations and all of those special events that fill up the month of June.  Our hearty congratulations to the many graduates, newly weds and Dad’s who are the recipients of our strawberries.

Beth and Everyone at Corey Lake Orchards thanks you for buying local!  Have a great weekend.