Do you have a passion for making things entirely by hand or appreciate it in other people? In my teens and twenties, I got a thrill out of being my own mechanic on my old '75 Mustang. Yep, I've changed a few water pumps and brake pads. I have sewn every stitch of handmade rag dolls with a needle and thread (no machine stitching), and I prefer to cook from scratch. Isn't it much more rewarding to gather family and friends to put in fence posts, and raise barns? So naturally for me, prepping the fleece, learning to spin, and then making things from the alpacas' luscious fiber is my idea of happiness! -Kaylen

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Pasta Fagioli

After a cold day on the farm, this does the trick!

  (photo by Christine)


  • 1 cup ditalini, uncooked
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onions, finely chopped
  • 1 carrots, finely chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 small can diced tomatoes with basil, garlic, and oregano
  • ½ small box of frozen spinach, thawed (or fresh spinach)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper                                
  • 4 cups water                                                                                               
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley


  1. Cook pasta in boiling salted water.
  2. While pasta is cooking, heat oil in a large pot over medium heat.
  3. Add onion, carrot and celery and cook until tender (approx 15 minutes), stirring occasionally.
  4. Add garlic and cook for one minute (be careful not to burn the garlic).
  5. Add beans, tomatoes, spinach, salt, pepper, and water and bring to a boil.
  6. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 20 minutes.
  7. Stir in drained pasta, cheese, and parsley, and heat through.