This is mainly a food blog. That said, I think it’s important to have a little heart to heart about my philosophies around food. You won’t see too many cute cupcakes or tailgate party recipes on this blog. My focus is on healthy-ish food that comes from my farm, local farmers markets, and the farmers in my community.
About the Farm
Tipsy Toad Grove is a small mixed farm. We keep a herd of Miniature Nubian dairy goats, a handful of sheep, poultry for meat and eggs, and every spring we get a few piggies who become freezer campers in the fall. All our animals are raised on pasture using as little commercial feed supplement as necessary. We like to do things the natural way, which means letting our animals eat what nature intended and letting them grow at the speed they were meant to grow. No force-feeding, lots of access to the great outdoors, and the freedom to go inside if they feel like it.
We grow a market garden. Our produce is spray free and we use the garden to feed ourselves. We sell at a handful of markets in the Annapolis Valley. I like to grow heirloom varieties, and I’m always on the lookout for something that’s a bit different – unusual colours, extra flavour, and unexpected textures rock my world.
How I Cook
I treat cooking as an art much more than a science. I rarely follow recipes, and I’m best at taking whatever happens to be on hand and turning it into a meal. While most people will pick out a recipe and then get the ingredients, I like to come up with recipes inspired by the things that need to be eaten.
Except in the case of baking, curing or pickling I don’t believe in accurate measurements… I cook organically adding a sprinkle of this, a handful of that. The spoon is my favourite cooking implement because everything gets tasted and adjusted 100 times before it makes it to the plate. I should also mention that I’m a huge proponent of local breweries and wineries. Nova Scotia has an incredible assortment of fantastic craft brewers, cider makers, wineries, and more recently, distilleries. We have a small orchard on our property and this fall we’ll be starting some cider production of our own.
So now you know where I’m coming from. The recipes in this blog are meant to be inspirations… don’t follow them verbatim… play with the seasonings, substitute things you love for things you hate. Creating delicious food is more about intuition than precision, so please, take my suggestions and run!