LA Specialty Event!

Mix together two buses full of the area's finest chefs, a generous portion of spirits, and a crisp but comfortable Fall day and what do you get? What you get is a rockin' good time at Weiser Family Farms, that's what! Last Monday, October 18, the good folks at LA Specialty brought along 70 or so of their bestest friends to our Tehachapi Fields for a day of Fall frolic.

A few light showers threatened to put a damper on things but miraculously, the weather eased a bit as the bus loads of happy revelers arrived at the farm. Soon after their arrival, Alex took everyone on a brief tour of the farm, showing everyone the Fall crops that we are harvesting or soon will be harvesting. In fact, most of our guests took the opportunity to dig up a bounty of parsnips, nantes and purple haze carrots, watermelon radishes, and crosnes. Believe it or not, many folks also had the chance to pick some ripe Fairtime peaches still on the tree!

Soon after walking through a field of Romanesco cauliflower and Red Rubine brussel sprouts, we all hopped back on the buses for a scenic drive through the rolling hills and oaks of Tehachapi to the Cummings Valley location where our crew was busy at work harvesting Purple Peruvian and Rose-Finn Apple fingerlings. Knowing a good thing when we see it, we handed our free labor (uh, welcomed guests) shovels and we all dug up some Swedish Peanut potatoes, "old school" style.

After getting all our hands dirty and enjoying the valley views, we all got back on the buses and drove to Brites Valley Lake recreational area. There, Wolfgang Puck catering had waiting a delicious lunch featuring crops from who else, Weiser Farms. Everyone had a good time, eating, chatting, and playing volleyball and horseshoes as the camp fires blazed and a local musician played on.

Many thanks to LA Specialty for putting on such a great event, and bringing our chef friends to our Farm, and for the many years of supporting our Family Farm. We look forward to having you come back soon!


Here Comes the Sun

Have you ever tried a Sun Choke?  Or maybe a Jerusalem Artichoke?  Did you know they are the same thing?  It's true.  And this week they are back at your local farmers market.  These funky looking tubers are the texture of potatoes but taste like an artichoke.  

 So why does it have two names?  One theory holds Jerusalem is a    corruption of the Italian girasola, meaning "turning toward the sun,"  a reference to the sunflower. Another theory involves another  garbling of the Ter Neusen, Netherlands area where the sunchoke  was originally introduced to Europe. Artichoke comes from the  Arabic al-khurshuf, meaning thistle, another reference to  appearance of the above-ground foliation. 

 You can prepare these artichokes in so many ways, but try this recipe:

Roasted Cauliflower, Brussels Sprouts and Jerusalem Artichokes*


  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into bite-size florets
  • 1 pint Brussels sprouts, cut in 1/2
  • 1/2 pound Jerusalem artichokes, scrubbed and cut into 1-inch dice
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • 1/4 cup chopped chives


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

 In a large bowl, combine all the vegetables, coat with olive oil and season generously with salt.  Spread the vegetables on a sheet tray in an even layer, don't pile them up. The vegetables don't need to be spread out but they need to be pretty much in a single even layer. If this is not the case, use 2 trays.

Put the vegetables in the preheated oven. 15 minutes into the cooking process, stir the vegetables so they have the chance to brown all over, and rotate the tray to insure even cooking. Repeat this process after another 15 minutes. Roast the vegetables for an additional 15 to 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are roasty brown and should smell almost like popcorn!. Check for doneness. This means taste some! If they aren't very roasty brown, let them go for another few minutes until they are. Season with salt, if needed. Transfer to a serving dish, garnish with chives and serve immediately.

*recipe courtesy of Anne Burrell and Food Network


Feast at the Farm

Join Weiser Family Farms and Taste of Tehachapi Culinary Club for an artisan meal under the stars. Our friend, and celebrated chef, Rich Mead, of Sage Restaurant and Canyon Restaurant in Newport Beach, will be preparing the gourmet meal, made from locally grown grass fed beef, ostrich, and pig and supplemented with seasonal pickings from Tanglewood Farms, Moessner Orchards, and, of course, Weiser Family Farms. Complimenting the meal will be fine wine from Souza Family vineyards.

Tickets for this wonderful event are $125 each. Besides a meal to die for, the price includes a tour of Tanglewood Farms, music, and a Taste of Tehachapi Club membership.


Apocalypse Now

So, yesterday was supposed to be a pretty uneventful day, head up to Tehachapi to meet with a local irrigation specialist, check out the crops, stuff like that, nothing special. Fuggetaboutit! I found myself right smack in the middle of a Charlton Heston movie!

OK, so I’m exaggerating a bit.  Just a little hail and fire.  It could have been worse. Still, it shakes you up a bit when you see planes flying near your property dropping fire retardant as you drive up. Lucky for  us the 55 acre blaze was East of our property with a prevailing West to East wind  (just East, across the street East!).  Everybody was safe and the crops were unaffected (big sigh of relief!).

If that wasn’t bad enough, on the way back home, I noticed a few rain drops hitting my windshield.  I thought nothing of it.  Little did I know that, oh, 70 or 80 miles or so further East, heavy rain, gusty winds, and half-inch hail was battering Lucerne Valley.  As of this writing, I haven’t had a chance to check things out first hand. The roads leading to our farm are terribly muddied up and I don’t have a four wheel drive vehicle.  We’re keeping our fingers crossed that our melons and our winter squash are okay.

Well, I guess I gotta go now.  I’m heading over to the local slaughterhouse to get me some lamb’s blood.  Can’t be too cautious.


Whole Foods Event

On Aug. 10 we had the pleasure of hosting our friends from the Southern California Whole Foods Markets at our farm in Tehachapi.  A caravan of white vans arrived around 10am where upon they were able to observe us hard at work in the fields, specifically weeding a field of Parsnips that were just planted and picking Persian Mulberries for the Santa Monica Farmers Market.

 What a beautiful summer day it was!  The temperature was around 85 degrees with the cool mountain breeze.  We walked around showing the freshly plowed fields that had just been planted for our Fall season coming up.  In just 60 days or so and these fields will all be green with a rainbow of colored carrots, romanesco cauliflower, parsnips, brussel sprouts, crosnes, and onions.

 After the tour of the main farm, we jumped into our vehicles and drove a few miles to our potato fields in Cummings Valley that are getting close to harvest . Volunteers from  the Whole Foods group were selected to dig up some Red Thumb Fingerlings and Purple Peruvians so we could check on their progress.  I must say they’re looking pretty good. It would appear like we’ll need just a few weeks of growth at which point the crop will be set.  Looks like we’ll have a nice crop in the ground!


After enjoying the views and breathing in some fresh air, we capped off the tour with a short drive to Brites Lake.  There, Chef Claud Beltran from Noir Restaurant in Pasadena made us a marvelous barbecue featuring Weiser Family Farms vegetables.  Featured were Claud’s fantastic heirloom potato and carrot salads, and a mixed melon dish with curry leaves and vanilla.  But that’s not all! Fresh roasted Padron Peppers, roasted Bermuda Onions and Fingerling Potato chips that were also a huge hit.  For the carnivores among us, barbecued Tri-Tip and the Chicken, smoked with apple wood, was prepared. It was fantastic!

Thanks to Whole Foods and all theTeam members  and Martin Anenberg of Freshpoint for coming out to visit and for having such enthusiasm for the crops we grow and the supporting local sustainable farms.  Finally, a special thank you also goes out to Daniel Beaman Photography for taking great photos.

Want to see more photos from the event? Check out this album on Daniel Beaman's Flickr site