Most of the food we eat as a school is grown right here on campus. Under the care of our farm manager, with the help of our students, the farm produces around thirty-five thousand pounds of vegetables and fruit, as well as and all of the meat, eggs, and maple syrup that we eat each year. Many of our graduates say that eating what they have grown themselves sparked in them a life-long awareness of where their food comes from and an appreciation for the value of their own labor. The spring semester gets to harvest our first few crops—salad greens, maple syrup and asparagus —but the fall semester students are responsible for harvesting most of the food that they eat and that the following spring semester will eat. Before the food can be eaten of course, the fall semester students need to process it in the harvest kitchen and store it in the freezers and root cellars.
In this large kitchen beneath the dining hall, students turn tomatoes into sauce using a gigantic steam kettle; they blanch corn and wash potatoes; they cut carrots and press apples; dehydrate herbs for tea blends and do all of the other work necessary to process food safely. While they will prepare much of the food for storage, they usually wash and chop some food to bring straight up to the chef for that night's supper. It could be broccoli, beans, corn, melons, squash or potatoes -- food that moves straight from the garden onto the plate.
We store our root vegetables below ground on cedar shelving to preserve them through the late fall, winter, and spring. On a visit into the root cellar you will find carrots, beets, parsnips, rutabagas, cabbages, and bin upon bin of potatoes.
This space provides a climate-controlled environment for storage of many varieties of winter squash, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, onions, and garlic. A good place to be for those who love the smell of fresh garlic.
Walk-in cold storage
We have a large refrigerator and an enormous freezer for storage of broccoli, cauliflower, beans, tomato sauce, corn, Brussels sprouts, apple sauce and cider, peas, berries, peppers, and homemade tomatillo salsa. We also store our beef, pork, lamb, and poultry in our freezers. On cold winter days, we pipe outside air into our walk-in refrigerator to reduce our energy footprint.