Happy Father's Day
Recently we visited the Lee Turkey Farm in East Windsor, New Jersey. The 54 acre farm started in 1868 and is now operated by the 7th generation of the Lee family. This most beautifully kept property is an easy 45 miles from NYC; so, come on down. Pick-Your-Own... fruits and vegetables. Group visits can be arranged. Teachers, please note. CLICK for website.
This was our first visit, searching for the elusive sour cherry. There is only a few week window of availability for these little tart darlings, the indispensible ingredient for "Mom's Cherry Pie". Lattice crust? Is there any other kind? And, there's gonna be some lard in the crust (home rendered, mind you) so you know that crust will be crispy and flakey.
In late June Lee Turkey Farms also has the albino white type of sweet cherries. They are the very same variety used to make your favorite Manhattan Cocktail garnish, the Maraschino Cherry. As a former marketing maven, we wonder what adding a cocktail hour at the farm would look like. First round is on Cooky Cat!
It isn't verified (so assume it is a big fib), but the rumor is that the trees planted there are related to the very one… the very one!, what got George Washington all that press for not telling a lie when he chopped it down. Not saying whether it is true or not. But you know that the Father of Our Country spent some time traipsing around the Garden State. And, after sampling a few cherries, when we got home after the drive back from the farm, there was this catnap dream we had... something about crossing the Delaware in the dark of winter. Unusual... or, historic time travel. You decide.
Seriously, we chose to go to Lee Turkey Farm because of the positive testimony of a satisfied customer. The operative word was "Mom and Pop." Just as stated. Pop was the first to greet us. He was stationed there just in from the entrance, seated comfortably in a lawn chair underneath a sunshade umbrella. (Our city slicker wariness shot up briefly. This dude is going to hit us up for some parking money!) No. He cheerfully directed us to a nice shady spot to park the car, directly in front of the original 1802 homestead. Mom got us all squared away for picking the cherries and later closed the deal on the money side. Son Ronny Lee was also on hand too. He's doing the heavy lifting these days. Mom said it was his doing to introduce the pick-your-own vegetables on the farm. Green Gold! May Lee Turkey Farm prosper into countless generations.
So we will certainly be back. Next time, in mid-July, we have a tip that the quintessential apple sauce apple, the Yellow Transparent, will be available for picking. Then, late in the season, peaches. In between lots of the very best. Refer to the website at http://www.leeturkeyfarm.com/ for the schedule and what’s on now.
Here is Mr. Dick Lee in front of the Lee family digs.
Happy Father’s Day, Mr. Lee. And, all the other Mr. Lee’s (and Mrs. Lee's) whose spirits invest the place with such grace and life.