Make your own harvest box feast

Those weekly or bi-weekly deliveries of veggies, meat and fruit can often feel limited. That's why six farmers from the Ottawa-Gatineau area have decided to team up.

New collective of local farmers hopes to shake up community-supported agriculture

Grazing Days provides the meats in the Farmhouse Food harvest box, including the pork shoulder in this pulled pork and sauerkraut slider. (Farmhouse Food)

The popularity of community supported agriculture and farm shares has steadily grown over the years.

But that weekly or bi-weekly delivery of veggies, meat and fruit often comes from one farm, sometimes with limited variety.

Six Ottawa-Gatineau farmers have now joined forces to expand their offerings — and they hope it will help them grow their customer base, as well.

Farmhouse Food is made up of Juniper Farm, Grazing Days, BeetBox Farm, Bluegrass Farm, Milkhouse Farm & Dairy, and Rooted Oak Farm. Their first offering is a harvest box which will feature items from each producer, including meat, cheese, produce and fermented food.

"I know that people buying our salad greens are also looking for local cheeses, value-added items, vegetables and meats," said Leela Ramachandran of Bluegrass Farm. 

"I'm happy to connect our customers with other dedicated local producers, and to offer direct access to a unique combination of local foods."

While the culinary landscape is peppered with food boxes these days, David Mazur-Goulet of BeetBox Farm says the six local growers are offering something different.

"The farmers growing your food also run the collective, manage production and sales, and bring the food to you in person," he said.

"Everything in the box is grown within 100 kilometres of Ottawa-Gatineau, adheres to rigorous ecological and ethical standards, and is source-identified for transparency."

Last week on CBC Radio's All In A Day, Ramachandran joined Juniper Turgeon of Juniper Farm in Wakefield, Que., to show just how far their first harvest box can go.

Here are two of their recipes: a pulled pork slider with golden sauerkraut, and a rainbow beet salad with quinoa, carrots and mixed greens.

Rainbow beet and quinoa salad


  • One large or two medium-sized beets
  • ½ cup quinoa
  • One carrot, grated
  • One red onion, halved and thinly sliced 
  • ½ cup chopped nuts
  • 2 cups assorted greens, washed
  • 3 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. maple syrup or honey
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 clove garlic
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Drizzle the beets with olive oil, wrap in foil and roast at 425 F for an hour or until tender.
  2. While beets are roasting, rinse the quinoa and cook.
  3. Once the beets are done, let them cool then peel and dice.
  4. For the dressing, whisk together the apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil, maple syrup or honey, mustard, garlic, salt and pepper.
  5. Combine the beets with the quinoa, carrot, red onion, chopped nuts and greens.
  6. Drizzle with dressing.

Pulled pork slider with golden sauerkraut


  • One pork shoulder
  • Vegetable broth
  • Apple juice
  • ⅓ cup Dijon mustard
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • maple syrup or honey (optional)
  • buns, toasted
  • sauerkraut


  1. Braise the pork shoulder in the vegetable broth and apple juice, low and slow, for 10 hours.
  2. Using some of the remaining liquid, create a barbecue sauce by adding the mustard, apple cider vinegar and ketchup.
  3. Shred the pork and mix with the barbecue sauce.
  4. Pile high on a toasted bun and top with Juniper Farm golden sauerkraut.