A couple weekends ago, I spent a day out at Gathering Springs Farm, which is co-owned by my friend and fellow dietitian Sarah Waybright.
I was there for a dietitian-specific workshop they hosted, which felt like a total win/win as I got continuing education credits, plus I finally got to see Sarah’s farm!
Read on for a recap of the day’s adventures.
I’ve been all about dietitian farm trips recently – if you missed it, check out my recap from the multiple day RD Farm Camp I attended in August! Allison, who led that event, was actually in attendance at this one so it was fun to see her again, too.
Anyway! The first part of the day we got to take a tour around Gathering Springs Farm, which is a small scale, sustainability-focused diversified produce farm (if you’re in the area, check out their CSA!).
It was a pleasure to get to see Gathering Springs Farm in person, and to be reminded of how sustainable farming creates nutrient-rich soil AND nutrient-rich produce, too.
We also lucked out with a beautiful day to be wandering among vegetables and learning about farming practices.
Anytime I visit a farm I’m reminded of the phenomenal amount of work it takes to run one – so much respect to all farmers!
While we walked, we got to sample some of the end of summer produce – hello, tomatoes!
Plus some yummy peppers in the process of turning from green to red (it always blows my mind that peppers change color as they ripen instead of the different colors being different varieties).
Even though this pepper was shaped like a hot pepper, it wasn’t hot, Sarah assured us. 🙂
Sarah and I have been friends for many years; we originally met way back in 2013 when she hosted a dinner party/food demo night for some DC bloggers (including me), and have been in contact ever since.
It was great to see each other in person again for the first time since the pandemic started. The last time I saw her was when she came over in January 2020 to help me start my compost bin at home!
(Read all about it here: How to Start Composting at Home. And in case you’re wondering, we are still going strong with it now, and a super fun random thing is we used some of our rich compost soil in our garden beds this year and one of them randomly grew a cantaloupe! Riese was SO excited by the fun surprise!)
Sarah in her natural habitat:
After touring the farm, it was time for a food demo!
A dietitian and chef named Emily Frizell gave a presentation and a food demo all about using farm-fresh ingredients and culinary skills to create a successful cooking demonstration. This was the bulk of the day’s event – giving the dietitians in attendance tips for how to plan and lead a cooking experience/food demo.
I’ve done a lot of food demos in the past, but it has been quite awhile since I hosted one, so this was interesting and a nice way to refresh my skills! I found it relevant not just for in-person events but also for virtual or social media specific food demos, too.
As part of the food demo/presentation, Emily made us lunch! We helped a little as practice, too. 🙂
Lunch included a lot of ingredients that we picked while walking around the farm – peppers, lettuce, some herbs, etc.
We had stuffed peppers (I love stuffed peppers – here are some of my favorite recipes: Mediterranean Stuffed Peppers with Chicken and Vegetarian Mexican Stuffed Peppers), which were filled with quinoa and lots of sautéed vegetables.
Plus some homemade (by Sarah) bread, and a make your own salad bar with fun toppings. Yum!
It reminded of my fall-themed Harvest Bowls with Sweet Potato recipe – similar vibe! Topping options included: chickpeas, chopped dates, quinoa, roasted squash, sliced pear, nuts, and a yummy vinaigrette.
Here’s my jam packed plate – I was hungry and really excited about everything!
After lunch, we took a food demo break to tour a little more of the farm, which included visiting the chickens and gathering some fresh eggs for our afternoon food demo. Doesn’t get fresher than this!
The afternoon food demo was a veggie-packed frittata, as you may already have guessed. 🙂 It was delicious!
We ended our afternoon at the farm with some apple cider vinegar mocktails (they tasted a lot like kombucha, which I love, so I was all about it – although my fall sangria would also have been delicious, just sayin’) and visiting some of the animals at the farm.
We also visited some adorable pigs that I forgot to get a photo of. 🙂
It was really fun to get to spend some time out in the country on such a beautiful day – and to sharpen my food demo skills while I was at it. Until next time, Gathering Springs Farm… thanks for having us!