It was a beautiful mild autumn day when 29 PFC volunteers and neighbours headed to Proulx Farm in Cumberland. We made a quick pit stop to pick up hot chocolate for everyone from Bridgehead and to pick up some friends at the Bronson Centre, and then we were on our way. Giselle Proulx greeted us as we arrived at the farm. She told us how the farm is 200 acres and it`s the fourth generation of the family who`s taking over the operation of the farm. She provided us with some tips about choosing and cooking pumpkins (the smaller sugar pumpkins are sweeter, fleshier and less watery—perfect for cooking pies, muffins, soups and cakes) and also talked about crop rotation and how it is good for the soil. We took a tour of the barn to look at the farm animals, a hayride through the maple trees where they tap sap for maple syrup in the spring, and a walk through one of the corn mazes. After a delicious lunch of sandwiches and muffins prepared by PFC volunteers, fresh apples from a local orchard (thanks Ross!), and hot chocolate from Bridgehead, we got down to work picking the perfect pumpkins for cooking. Everyone picked 2 or 3 pumpkins to take home to cook and we`ll use the rest of the pumpkins for roasting the seeds and in recipes in our cooking workshop next Thursday, October 23, with Jo-Ann Laverty (co-owner of the Red Apron). We are looking forward to hearing what our neighbours made with their pumpkins, to share recipes and tips, and to sample some tasty pumpkin treats!
Thanks to the Trillium Foundation for making this possible, to Bridgehead for the hot chocolate donation, to all of our neighbours who braved the weather to come out and pick pumpkins (as it was, it didn`t start raining until we were on our way home), and to Proulx Farm for the opportunity to see how pumpkins are grown and harvested.