I am so excited to feature this next farmer! Kylie has incredible tenacity and passion to pursue a dream of farming all while being a mom to (soon-to-be) three boys! Through hard work and a little faith, Kylie established Gray Girl Farms where she currently farms potatoes and forage crops, but hopes to expand as the years go on. I decided to share a classic potato recipe, but it is also one Kylie can appreciate. My mother-in-law raised three boys as well. And I know nourished them with potatoes regularly as they are also grown here in North Dakota. My mother-in-law’s creamy potato salad is a staple in our family. And it is still a dish my now mid 30’s husband still looks forward to on the supper table.
POTATOES: KYLIE OF GRAY GIRL FARMS
I started farming 2-3 years ago after I had become a single mom. I was really young and had figured on going into the nursing field. Once I realized that wasn’t an option, I went back to the drawing board and realized maybe Ag was something I should stick with. I started pursuing leases with farmers in the area. After a lot of dead ends, I found a guy that took a chance on me and have never looked back.
The hardest part of farming is that I own no ground. The Columbia Basin is competitive and there are a lot of successful farmers here. It is a constant job to keep seeking out ground, to work on getting long term leases for. I am sure that never changes but when you are young and don’t have a lot of money and experience behind you, you really have to find the right people to work with.
The most satisfying part of farming is everything I have learned, and watching a crop grow that I planned out. My business brand is based on “Raising Crops and Kids”. I wish consumers had a chance to know how similar the two are. I beam with pride and my greatest accomplishment is raising our boys. But I feel those same feelings when I know I have raised a good crop that meets the standards to be used in homes of families across the country. Those are two things for me, that just can’t be beat.
I think the most useful advance in farming for me personally is FieldNet. Gps water monitoring systems that are programmed with each circle that we farm. I am raising kids, and farming. Balancing the two have proved to be really tricky. This program allows me to know exactly how much water is being applied, and when. I can turn a circle off, and on without leaving my house. I am expecting my third boy in March and anything that saves me having to load them in the car, is a life savor to me!
We love twice baked potatoes at our house. You can find them on the menu near once a week when we are getting them fresh from fields. The topping ideas are endless, and my oldest son is old enough he just picks them up and eats it with his hands.
In true Germans from Russia fashion, this is a large recipe and makes enough for several meals or a large group. Feel free to make and enjoy for several days or for your special event! This salad can also be adapted by including or omitting the vegetables.
- 3 - 4 pounds potatoes, peeled and cubed (I used red potatoes)
- 12 hard boiled eggs, sliced
- 2 stalks celery, finely diced
- 1/2 onion, finely diced
- 1/2 green bell pepper, finely diced (optional)
- 2 cups heavy cream (or half and half)
- 2 cups Miracle Whip
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 3 tablespoons yellow mustard
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- Boil potatoes in salted water until tender, about 12 - 15 minutes. Drain well, but don't rinse.
- While potatoes are boiling, prepare dressing. Mix all ingredients in a medium bowl. Whisk to combine.
- Once potatoes are tender, rinsed, and cool enough to handle. Pour into large bowl. Pour about 1/3 of the dressing into the bowl. Stir to combine.
- Once potatoes are fully cooled, add eggs, celery, onion, and green pepper (if using). Stir to combine. Add rest of dressing and a little extra cream if necessary. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve.
- Salad is best made at least a few hours in advance. Enjoy!
This post is part of my Thirty Days of Food series where I am writing about food and farming for the entire month of November, to find out more about it all or how to follow along, visit my Thirty Days of Food page to find more great recipes with farmer features!