This weekend, Farmer Nash and his friend Norm Nelson (at left, below) made old-fashioned liverwurst with a hand-cranked sausage press that Nash’s grandfather bought early in the last century. There are two dates molded into the cast-iron—July 11, 1876, and “Patented April 10, 1888.” When Nash’s dad passed away a couple of years ago, Nash had it sent to Sequim from Illinois where he grew up, and where both sets of grandparents farmed. His extended family used to do communal hog slaughters early in the fall and his grandmothers would use this same equipment to make sausages for the entire family.
It was hard for Nash to conceal his joy at using that old sausage press again. The last time he remembered seeing it in use was back in the early 1950s. His family used all parts of the pig, including the skin, head, fat, hooves and internal organs. Nothing went to waste. The fat was turned into soap, including laundry detergent. The skin was fried and salted for cracklins. They made bacon, hams, head cheese and lots of sausages. It took several days, but in the end they all had plenty of high quality protein for the entire year.
Farewell and thank you to Dr. John Navazio
The green kale in your box was developed through years of work by Nash and his team. While they have lots of farming experience, effective plant selection sometimes requires someone with training in classical seed breeding. For us, that person was Dr. John Navazio, former senior scientist with Organic Seed Alliance (OSA). John is leaving the Northwest to take a position with Johnny’s Selected Seeds in Maine. We will miss his vast knowledge, and his great rock ‘n roll guitar playing! Above, John receives an artist’s rendition of his Abundant Bloomsdale spinach from Micaela Colley, director of OSA (www.seedalliance.org) as a farewell present.