Spring is Transformation Time on the Farm

Stocking our restaurants with year-round farm food demands strategies — we do live in Colorado, after all. If something is capable of undergoing preservation in such a way that flavor is maintained (if not transformed in an excellent way), then we preserve.  So...

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The Farm Team Reunites for the Season Ahead

We could do without the wind — the physics that turns air tactile is not our farm friend. And we all could use more moisture, especially in the mountains. The snowier those peaks, the more reliable and abundant our summer and fall irrigation. But we will take the...

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Flowering Hon Tsai Tai and Arugula in Winter

You might think after a winter of cleaning pig stalls and taking care of piglets and lambs, of moving fences and corraling sows, of sweeping snow from row cover and cleaning arugula in 20-something weather and slipping across alternately ice-crusted and mud-soggy...

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Winter On The Farm Leads to Seed — And Geese

Planting from seed? Not yet. Massive harvests? Soon, but for now the vegetable bounty is minimal. Plowing fields, dealing with irrigation, wrestling with pests? Nope, negative, not one bit. The plant part of our farm equation now rests, for the most part. But not for...

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Lambs and Ewes, Sows and Piglets on Black Cat Farm

They have been arriving nearly every day since December, the tiny lambs. Their moms, the ewes, have been heavy with offspring, in many cases twins, for months; the gestation for lambs is 152 days, give or take. Now lambs totter around the fields on those unsteady,...

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Stop By Tonight at Bramble for Austin’s Last Night

Today marks two years to the day since Austin Elsborg started roasting beets, wizarding ambrosial barbecue sauce for pork and turning out some of the finest tavern food in Colorado at Bramble & Hare. All from a kitchen the size of a food truck. The anniversary is...

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Black Cat is Devil Proof — And Cheery With Krug, Too

The new bottles of California Malbec thrill the Black Cat family not just because the wine is superb. We cherish and champion the Sonoma County elixir, too, because winemaker Jesse Katz grew up in Boulder, and originals of his father Andy Katz’s spectacular...

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Head To The Final Market of 2017

It arrives on a Friday every year, and the profound sense of bittersweet returns the next day, too. It is the Friday and Saturday immediately prior to Thanksgiving, which always marks our last harvest for the farmers’ market in downtown Boulder as well as the...

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Spinach Returns, Plenty of Veggies Still Harvested

The bulk of the harvesting for 2018 is wrapping-up. We spent a good bit of time this week in the field that holds our polenta corn, which has been drying on the stalks since August. Now, we harvest the cobs and deliver them to a barn, where they will dry some more. At...

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Farm to Table Pumpkins for Pigs

Sometimes we almost feel like those Japanese ranchers who spend so much time and effort fussing over their Wagyu herds, the kind of cattle that produce kobe beef. We don’t massage our heritage Mulefoot pigs, but we have crowned them kings and queens of the farm....

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Farm-to-Table Happens in the Snow

Harvesting crops is never a breezy affair — even on a 72-degree June afternoon with the sky the color of an Adriatic lagoon it presents challenges. It is physically demanding, requiring that we bend over and pull or dig. We fill bins with arugula and Belgian endive,...

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Pigs Key to the Life of Biodynamic Farm

It’s been quite the week — especially for our pigs. We raise more than 100 of them, mostly heritage Mulefoots, on one of our properties. They are one of the foundations of Black Cat Farm, which is the only certified biodynamic farm-to-table operation in the United...

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Frost and Snow and Sturdy Vegetables

Our first frost in Boulder normally happens somewhere during the first 10 days of October, and sure enough, that's what happened this year. As anticipated, the hard frost whacked the tomatoes, peppers, basil and eggplant for the year, as well as select greens that...

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The Balm Before the Storm

Winter is coming. On Monday. If you planned on making tomato sauce to put up or freeze; pickling peppers; cooking big batches of baba ganoush from local organic eggplants, calabacitas with summer squash and corn, or salsa with jalapenos and cherry tomatoes — well, you...

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A Bounty Despite the Rain

Will the rain — although really, it's been more like an unrelenting mist — ever stop? Water is usually welcome in sunny Colorado, and course it is vital for farming. But it also complicates things like planting and harvesting, especially when it just comes at us day...

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Here Comes Fall — Make it a Tomato Sauce Weekend

We all have sensed it in the mornings the past few weeks — fall’s arrival. We think she finally knocks on the door tomorrow morning, looking dramatic in a scarf and sweater and grinning madly. “Are you ready for me?” “We are not. But come on in, Fall. Nice to see you...

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Farm Treasures at the Market and Restaurants

One of our experiments this year, in addition to sweet potatoes and Belgian endive, was peanuts. It looks like we scored a hat trick this year. The sweet potatoes and endive were triumphs, and despite research that cautioned us against trying peanuts — the legumes...

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Sweet Potatoes at the Market

Finally! We will be selling our own organic Boulder County sweet potatoes on Saturday at the Market. Yes! As we have chronicled in detail on the blog, growing sweet potatoes was a surprise triumph for us this year. They are not supposed to really grow in Colorado —...

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Fruits of Labor

With enough pepper, eggplant and tomato plants to supply the island of Corsica with produce for a year, we are awfully busy in the fields plucking fruit, tossing it into baskets, and hauling it on our shoulders up to the trucks. Among other things, we are turning...

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Sweet Potatoes and their Greens are Spectacular

We believe you have not tried the following two things: Fingerling sweet potatoes grown in Boulder County Sweet potato greens What are you waiting for? We wrote about our sweet potato adventure here, in our last blog entry. Now that we have had a chance to bring the...

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Food Laboratory Victories

Our food laboratory — the farm — persuades us to try new things every year. It is a laboratory, after all. Figuring out how to coax artichoke plants to produce globes took about five years (the photo above is an artichoke flower. It looks like it belongs in a coral...

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The Mighty Harvest

Did you hear that? It was the fields (well, most of them) slurping down all of that much-needed water this week. We irrigate our fields, so water falling from the sky is not always vital. But of course it is usually welcome. The downside? The weeds sure do love water...

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Harvest Entering the Sweet Spot

Tomatoes? Check. Peppers? Yep. Eggplant? You betcha'. Tomatillos? Indeed. Our harvests lately have been downright cornucopian — and wouldn't it rock if we had a goat's horn to display the things we are pulling from the fields? But alas, no horn. Not yet, at least....

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Retreat of Temperatures + Rain = Good

It's been nice, hasn't it? Summer had been plodding along, climatically, as a parade of hot, dry days. We began to look west for signs of smoke. But then the temperatures dropped, some rain fell, and the haze that seemed to occupy the sky for weeks evaporated,...

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Pepper & Squash Palooza

The first chunk of every farmers' market season gets dominated by leafy things and rooty things — lettuces, kale, spinach, turnips, spring onions, radishes.   And then the fruiting vegetables begin appearing — peas are early fruiters, but the rest of the summer...

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A Farm Dinner and the Market — Thank You Open Space

We spend a lot of time in fields — preparing soil, planting, weeding, harvesting, tending to animals, irrigating and as of this week hosting a farm dinner as well, our first-ever at Black Cat Farm. None of it would be possible without our partnerships with Open Space...

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Time For Basil and Shishitos

We  finally are harvesting some fruiting vegetables: summer squash, Anaheim peppers and ... shishito peppers! We are so very pleased to raise the little flavor bombs known as shishitos this year. They have many preparations, but the easiest is probably tossed in a hot...

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Ripening Into Summer

Longer days, warm nights, the strong sun arcing over the fields day after day, plenty of irrigation (thank you mountain snow!) — all of the above makes Black Cat Farm's plants exceedingly happy. Growing up in such healthy soil, under conditions like these, leads to...

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Carrots, Peas and So Much More

And now comes the heat. The mixture of quick afternoon thunderstorms combined with daytime temperatures in the 70s and low 80s has been ideal. The farm looks plugged in — like it somehow is being lit from within. The colors can be incandescent. The 10-day forecast,...

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