This year, we decided to start a farmers’ market in Kulm, and this past Tuesday was our opening day. There was so much prep that went into this, but thanks to stressing out over it for a month and a half, the few days before went pretty smoothly.

We sold $1 root beet floats and $0.25 lemonade. We had to restock halfway through to keep up with root beer float demand, and ended up with about 4.5 gallons of leftover lemonade 🙂 At least we know how to streamline our offerings! We decided to sell floats as a way to avoid charging vendor fees, so all the money from floats goes straight back into the market. We are lucky enough to have some capable, charming young ladies volunteer their help serving floats. Thank you McKenzie and Elizabeth!

At 1:55 pm we had about 12 people pounce on the produce, and we didn’t sit down until 5:30! I’m guessing part of that was just people interested in “the new thing” in town, so the next market might not get as much traffic, but it sure felt good to have so much support from our community.

A few pics from the day can be found here: (please like us!) Coteau Hills Facebook Page

The day after our smashing success, I had my first experience butchering chickens. Spoiler warning: the event was gross and pics are graphic — avert your eyes if you don’t like that sort of thing.

Glacier Gardens is on my inlaws’ farmstead. Their neighbors are “nearly sustenance” farmers, and we have grown to be good friends. I told her about 3 months ago that I would help her butcher chickens when the time came, and Wednesday was the day.

So, here’s just the basic steps of how to butcher a chicken:

1. Find a 12 year old boy who thinks cutting off chicken heads is the coolest thing he could be doing at 8am.

2. Put him to work.

3. Dip the headless chicken into a nearly boiling pot of water to loosen the feathers.

4. At the plucking station, yank the wing and tail feathers out immediately, because those are the hardest to get so you have to use the effects of the hot water right away.

5. When the chicken is as plucked as you can possibly get it, take it to the gutting station and turn your head away.

6. When those brave people are done gutting, the chicken gets singed to remove all the tiny hair-like feathers you couldn’t pluck.

7. Now, those brave people left one foot on to hold when they were singeing the chicken, so they have to hack that off before you hose the chicken off and do another thorough check to make sure all internal organs are out. Quote of the day, “Those lungs are buggers.”

8. Take the chicken inside, where you basically want to make it look like what you would put in the oven: nitpick all the pinfeathers and do one more good check of the insides.

Here are the ladies, ready to go!

In honor of my experience, please see our special poultry edition of “What can you do with this vegetable?”