Friday, July 11, 2008
Twice the Farming Fun: Drumlin Farm and Verrill Farm
We are very lucky to live 10 minutes from one of the gem's of Natick: the Natick Organic Farm. It is not only a community owned farm, but it is actually free to visit. They have pigs, cows, goats, sheep and chickens. You can go and pet the animals, buy freshly laid eggs and organic vegetables and walk through their beautiful "toddler" garden.
As lovely as it is, there are times that I prefer to take the boys to one of my favorites as a child: Drumlin Farm. It is a bit bigger than the Organic Farm, and also has horses, owls, a fox and a badger. Although it takes a few more minutes to drive there, my son loves it and it is has a great area for a toddler to run.
But now, one of my secrets: I am always eager to take the boys because it is 5 minutes down the road from Verrill Farm-one of my favorites farmstands. Verrill isn't really a hidden gem. It is well known for its produce and speciality foods (for example free range chickens and organic beef). They also have an in house kitchen that produces salads, decent roast chicken and sandwiches as well as prepared dinners. However, for me Verrill is as much about the gorgeous carrots as their ethereal scones. These scones are light, full of flavor and incredibly moist; quite unlike the leaden hockey pucks that I usually find. They range in flavors from mocha chip to mixed berry to banana plum. Simply put, they are worth every calorie. Amazingly, you can keep them for a few days in a paper bag and simply heat them up to near perfection by placing them in an oven at 350 for about 10 minutes.
Finally, it is worth checking out their website for the festivals. Our favorite is the tomato and corn festival. After paying about $10.00/person, you enter an all-you-can-eat paradise. They have samples of about 10 different prepared dishes. Our favorite part, though, was the opportunity to sample about 40 (seriously!) types of tomatoes and about 6 different varieties of corn! R. loved the traveling petting zoo that showed up with tot size animals. This weekend is their Blueberry Pancake Festival. The cashier told me that it is popular among dads who bring the kids while mom sleeps in. I love the idea, but R.'s egg allergy prevents that from from happening...yet!