Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Great Pumpkin Preview

Are you fed-up with waiting patiently in a local field, year after year, for the Great Pumpkin to arrive? Look no further because we have all of the greatest pumpkins for you to choose from. Farmer John and Farmer Tom have harvested some of the prettiest, weirdest and spookiest pumpkins of the season! Here’s a rundown of the specialty pumpkins at Springridge:

Peanut - The newest addition to our pumpkin family! This pumpkin looks like a raw peanut on the surface. While its appearance is creepy, it tastes good in soup or eating as a squash.

Cinderella - This magical pumpkin looks just as pretty as Cinderella's carriage. It's also delicious in soup and good for eating.

Tomato - This pumpkin has a bright red skin. It makes a hearty soup too...squash soup...not tomato!

Ghost - The perfect pumpkin for haunting season! This all white pumpkin is for decoration only. How does the pumpkin turn ghostly white?'s just a special seed!

Knucklehead - The spookiest pumpkin of our crop is all bumpy and warty. This decorator pumpkin is sure to scare your trick-or-treaters!

Prize Winner - A large orange pumpkin in the 150lb range! Surely the best in show!

Swan Gourds - These gourds look like birds. They dry out well and you can keep them forever.

Come join us in celebration of this year’s pumpkin crop at our annual Harvest Festival! The event is every weekend in October, including Thanksgiving Monday. There’s fun for the whole family – wagon rides to a 5 acre corn trail, face painting, “The Great Pumpkin Mix-Up” professional puppet show, new and improved Boo Barn and entrance into the Fun Farm Yard. Visit our website for all the details.

We’re continuing our love of pumpkins in the bakery with home-made pumpkin pies, tarts and our famous pumpkin face cookies. Our gift shop is also brimming with d├ęcor items to enhance your seasonal displays at home.

In other news:

Springridge is honored to be hosting an Evening with Elizabeth Baird on November 10. Space for this event is now full. If you are unable to attend the event, we are accepting pre-orders for signed copies of the Slow Cooker Collection, the Complete Christmas Book and the Complete Canadian Living Baking Book. Please call our Gift Loft at (905) 878-4908 to place an order. Orders will be available for pick-up after Nov. 11.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The Way the Cookie Crumbles...

At Springridge, we strive to support local partnerships that help make our farm shoppe a unique boutique. This year, we are excited to have formed a new relationship with the local cookie connoisseurs at Mary Macleod's Shortbread. In our bakery, we are featuring Mary's mouthwatering Chocolate Crunch Shortbreads and they’ve already become a favourite treat to indulge in amongst our customers!

Mary was the first entrepreneur in Canada to open a business devoted solely to handmade shortbread. She is currently located on Queen Street East in the Riverdale neighbourhood of Toronto. Mary’s Scottish roots have helped her master and reinvent the traditional shortbread cookie.

In fact, Mary developed the Chocolate Crunch Shortbread as her signature cookie in 1981 and her daughter-in-law, Sharon Macleod, says it’s still their most popular! “She was the first in Canada to mix chocolate into shortbread,” explains Sharon. “The unique ingredient formulation and gentle mixing technique we follow give the cookie a ‘crunch’ from the Belgian chocolate. This is difficult to duplicate with a machine-made cookie and believe me, there have been many who have tried.”

Their shortbreads are made using pure creamery butter and premium ingredients with no additives or preservatives. Sharon says, “We believe that making shortbread is an art, not a science. You have to be happy and relaxed when making the dough.”

Keeping their product fresh is a key component in keeping customer’s buying local. While Sharon believes the trend toward buying local means different things to different customers, there is no doubt Mary built her business with the support of her local community.

“Being a part of our community makes our business enjoyable for our family, our staff and our customers,” says Sharon. Mary Macleod’s Shortbreads have a significant following of long-time customers, often consisting of several generations of the same family.

Sharon encourages Springridge customers to just give them a taste and judge for themselves. Her family devotes their time to making top quality, pure ingredient shortbread that is as delicious as when Mary first began her business. Sharon thinks, “If customers like a melt-in-your-mouth shortbread cookie, they’ll love our cookies!”

In other news: We have 2 new attractions in our Fun Farm Yard. Come by and enjoy the straw bale tractor and tube slide! And don’t forget to mark your calendars… Harvest Festival starts Saturday, September 25!