Fortune Found in Fly-Over States

Though you may not have seen much coverage of it on the local or national news, a natural disaster took place last week in the heart of America. Wildfires ravaged through the plains and prairies of Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas, destroying human life, an estimated 5,000 head of cattle and 1 million acres, as well as homesteads and ranches.

The Wider Image: Deadly U.S. wildfires leave ranches in ruins

This hasn’t been a popular news story because it didn’t affect the masses living within urban areas, it wasn’t politically fueled and there was no rioting to spark controversy. It hasn’t been on the news because it affected a group of people that – rather than march, protest, loot or cause any disturbance at all – tend to  keep their head down, get their work done because they have a responsibility not taken lightly and typically mind their own business.

Since the devastation set in last week, thousands of individuals in hundreds of rural communities nestled in dozens of fly-over states have rallied together to gather supplies  to assist those farmers and ranchers who lost the very basic tools they need to function as a working operation: feed, fences, horses, veterinary care and more.

Livingston Machinery convoy of hay Wednesday morning leaving Fairview, OK and heading to the area impacted by the blazes. 

You see, there is fortune to be found in these fly-over states.

These no-mans-land

middle of nowhere

fly-over states.

The fortune found is rural Americans.
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Where there are rural Americans, you’ll never go hungry

Do you have a new baby? Rural Americans will stop by with casserole and pie.

A death in the family?  Rural Americans will stop by with casserole and pie.

Did your youngest finally get engaged?  Rural Americans will stop by with casserole and pie.

Did your basement flood with the spring rains?  Rural Americans will stop by with casserole and pie.

Is the t-ball season finally over?  Rural Americans will stop by with casserole and pie.

pie

Where there are rural Americans, you’ll never need a high-tech home security system

Rural Americans have made a reputation of keeping a watchful (nosey?) eye on the community. They’re the first to call you when they see a suspicious vehicle parked over by the shop, sure to ask why the vet truck was at the barn for three hours last Monday and the first to call when they don’t see your daughter’s minivan at the house over Christmas.

vet

Where there are rural Americans, you’ll never “not know”

As long as there are sale barns, kitchen tables, high school athletic games, church bulletins and farm auctions, word will get around. Folks in urban America may have high speed internet and Snapchat but they’ll never have the ability to push a message out  to an entire community faster than the rural American main street diner.

The Wider Image: Deadly U.S. wildfires leave ranches in ruins

Where there are rural Americans, you’ll never go without

Rural Americans supply the help when needed, sometimes in the form of a truck load of hay, sometimes in the form of a 14-year-old able-bodied son who is willing to work, sometimes in the form of a quarter cup of sugar. Rural Americans give when they can, where they can, and however they can.  

 

producers

There is fortune to be found in our beloved fly-over states, and it is each other. What an advantage we have to live in a world where we don’t have to hire moving trucks because we have friends with trucks and trailers. We don’t have to send Honey Baked Hams from some warehouse 2,000 miles away because we have a freezer full of farm fresh pork and a recipe card from Mary Jane’s Kitchen, 1976. We don’t have to fight life’s toughest moments alone, because we have Rural American neighbors, friends and strangers across the country bowing their heads when prayer is needed most.

We don’t have to search for good in the world,
because we live amongst it. 

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Learn how you can help wildfire victims in Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas

A Recipe Fresh off the Farm

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That’s a wrap!

Harvest season is over and now farm families begin to focus on a few other activities: Christmas, football and basketball seasons. All three new points of focus offer great opportunity for one thing: trying out a new recipe.

This week Harvest Land farmer-member Heather Hill partnered with the Indianapolis Colts Best Tailgate on Fox 59 WXIN Indianapolis and Registered Dietitian Kim Galeaz to introduce a tailgate (or Sunday afternoon couch session, or holiday party) recipe that uses a staple product from right off the farm: farm fresh pork.

While serving as an AGvocate and telling her  story on the news, Heather made a great point that farmers are the original tailgaters, since we eat so many meals on the tailgate of the truck during the spring and fall seasons. We couldn’t agree more! We also couldnt be more proud to have one of our members on television discussing how products grown right in here in our trade territory make it to the general consumers’ supper table.

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See the segment here.

Poblano Pork Chili

  • 1 ½ tablespoons corn or vegetable (soybean) oil
  • 2 pounds boneless pork loin chops, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 4 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
  • 1 ¾ cups finely chopped onion
  • 4 large garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 jar (16 oz.) salsa verde (green chili salsa)
  • 2 large poblano peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 2 cans (4.5 oz.) chopped green chilies, undrained
  • 2 cans (15.5 oz.) white or golden hominy, rinsed and drained
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 can (15-16 oz.) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro

Garnishes/toppings: Crushed corn tortilla chips, cilantro, sour cream, angel hair coleslaw, sliced radishes, lime wedges.

Heat oil in a large 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add pork cubes and cook, browning on all sides and stirring frequently, about 10 minutes.

Place pork in 5-quart slow cooker pot along with broth, onions, garlic, poblanos, green chilies, hominy, cumin, oregano, cloves, black and red pepper. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours. At the 7 ½ hour mark, remove ½ cup chili liquid in glass bowl and add flour; stir to make a paste.

Add this paste back to chili and stir well. Add beans and stir. Cook another 30 minutes or until chili is thickened slightly. Stir in cilantro. Serve with desired garnishes and toppings, and corn tortillas, too. Makes about 14-15 cups (7-8 servings).pork-poblano-chili

Recipe by culinary dietitian and nutritionist Kim Galeaz, RDN CD

We should note that even though this has affiliation with the Indianapolis Colts, we invite  Bengals fans to enjoy this recipe, too.

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