Meet Farmgirl extraordinaire, Jill Winger, creator of the award-winning blog The Prairie Homestead, and author of The Prairie Homestead Cookbook: Simple Recipes for Heritage Cooking in Any Kitchen.
What is the name of your Farm, Ranch, or Homestead?
The Prairie Homestead
Where are you located?
How and/or when did life as a farmer, rancher or homesteader begin for you?
We purchased our property in 2008. We simply wanted a place where we could keep our horses, but quickly caught the homesteading bug as we realized we could make our new land productive by growing food.
What do you grow and/or raise?
Beef cattle, dairy cattle, laying hens, meat birds, a large vegetable garden, and occasionally pigs.
What traditional methods do you use on your farm to grow your crops and/or raise your animals?
We prefer our beef cattle be completely grass fed. In the garden, we keep it organic and avoid all commercial fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides.
What is at least one farm tradition you uphold?
We’re very passionate about allowing our kids to have an old-fashioned childhood, complete with minimal technology, lots of free time outside, and farm chores. It’s one of my favorite parts of living this homestead life.
6) What is one of your favorite farm-infused recipes you wish to share?
Creamed Chard and Eggs Skillet
- Cook Time: 10 mins
- Total Time: 10 mins
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- Category: Country Breakfast
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 small onion or leek, finely diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 bunch (approximately 6 stalks) chard, or greens of your choice (spinach, kale, etc)
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese, divided
- 5–6 large eggs
- Ground black pepper
- Crusty bread or toast
- Preheat your oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- De-stem the chard and coarsely chop the leaves. Dice the stems and set aside.
- Melt the butter in a 10-inch oven-safe skillet (I like to use cast iron). Add the onion and chard stems to the skillet, and saute until softened. Add the garlic and chopped chard leaves, cooking until they are wilted (2 to 3 minutes)
- Add the lemon juice, mustard, cream, and ¼ cup Parmesan.
- Simmer for an additional 2 to 3 minutes, or until the cream has thickened slightly.
- Make shallow wells in the top of the chard mixture using the back of a spoon, then crack the eggs directly on top.
- Sprinkle with black pepper and the remaining ¼ cup of Parmesan.
- Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the whites are set and the yolks are cooked to your liking. (I like mine a bit runny.)
- Serve with a bit of toast or crusty bread to sop up the creamy goodness.
What inspires you to continue a farm lifestyle?
This lifestyle is what keeps me grounded—even in the midst of our very full, often busy lives, being outside working in the soil or with the animals brings us so much peace and fulfillment. That’s absolutely my favorite part.
What words of inspiration or uplifting wisdom do you hope to impart on the future generation of farmers, ranchers, beekeepers, and homesteaders?
It’s worth it. It’s not always easy, and sometimes it’s tempting to throw in the towel and take the easy route, but don’t quit—the payoffs are absolutely worth the blood, sweat, and tears.
Where can people find you/your products online? (Ex.link to your website, blog, and/or social networking websites you wish to share.)