American Farmland Trust

Meet the Chicken Whisperer, 5 Ways to Save Farms and Farmland, Vote for Your Favorite Photo and More

American Farmland Trust


Welcome to the February edition of Farm Fresh News. In this issue, meet a real chicken whisperer, help us find a picture worth a thousand words, discover five fun ways to save farms and food and more! Click here to view this content on the web.

Know Any Chicken Whisperers?

The Chicken WhispererFive year old Sammie is so passionate about chickens that she dances with them and stretches out on the couch with them to watch cartoons on TV. Watch the video to see why she's called the 'chicken whisperer.' More children like Sammie may be drawn to farming through farm education programs and Food Corps, which is recruiting young adults to teach children about growing their own food by planting school gardens.


Help Us Pick the Photo Worth a Thousand Words

2009 Annual ReportWe're trying to pick the best cover for our next annual report, and we need your help! Vote now for your favorite photograph by Oregon eco-photographer Shawn Linehan, who specializes in documenting farms committed to sustainable farming practices.The winning photo—as decided by you—will end up on the cover of our report, which highlights ways we’ve taken action to save the land and support a sustainable future for farms.

 Five Fun Ways to Support Farms and Farmland

Saving farms and farmland is more than a once a year consideration for our supporters! American Farmland Trust fans are creatively engaging others to save the land that sustains us by bringing the No Farms No Food® message to their friends and sharing their commitment to America’s farms.


Farm Fresh Recipe

Northern ComfortNorthern Comfort: Recipes from Adirondack Life is a collection of recipes that have appeared in fall and winter issues of Adirondack Life magazine, which covers New York’s six-million-acre Adirondack Park wilderness area. With recipes for traditional classics like French-Canadian meat pie as well as contemporary dishes using local produce—from apples and squash to maple syrup and honey—the book reflects the culinary landscape of a place known for its stunning natural beauty. Cookbook editor Annette Nielsen of Salem, New York, is a noted food writer and supporter of regional agriculture.  

Vidalia Onion and Apple Casserole
Hannah Hanford, Peru, New York

This dish is delicious with any pork recipe or steak on the grill. You can also add two to three large sliced portobello mushrooms to the sauté mixture and create a vegetarian entrée.

½ cup butter
4 medium Vidalia onions, sliced thin
3 medium McIntosh apples, peeled, sliced ¼-inch thick
15-20 saltine crackers, crushed
1 can cream of mushroom soup, stirred
2 eggs, lightly beaten
½ cup milk
1½ cups Gruyère cheese, shredded
½ cup Parmesan cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter in skillet and sauté onions over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Add sliced apples (plus optional mushrooms) and sauté until onions caramelize, 5 to 10 minutes more. Reserve 3 tablespoons of cracker crumbs for topping, and place the remaining crumbs over the bottom of a lightly greased 2-quart casserole dish.

Layer half of the soup, cheeses (save ¼ cup Gruyère for topping) and onion/apple mixture, then repeat. Combine eggs and milk and pour over onion mixture. Top with ¼ cup Gruyère and the remaining cracker crumbs.

Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, until bubbly and golden brown.
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