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At Blackaby Hill Farm: better, happier chicken farming

2014-08-03 - East Adair Co., KY - Photo by Tim Blackaby.
Jason Blackaby opens up the mobile chicken house for the chickens to get another free range day in the pasture. Blackaby family members Tim & Lisa, and Jason, their son, take turns selling Adair County grown meats at area farmers' markets. There is a definite taste and texture difference, well worth, we think, the slight premium to get a taste some can still remember from when their mothers served fried chicken which just a short time before had been running around the back yard. We didn't eat as much meat then, but what we did eat had taste and texture. The quality difference with fresh farm raised vegetables is now a widely known and accepted; the locally produced meats are still something of a well kept secret, but not for long, we suspect. We've had chicken and eggs from the Blackaby's, and lamb from Knifley twice from Mike Meyer twice. Last night, a very few ounces of filet mignon was used in a stir fry. Amazing stuff. The lamb chops had a very mild flavor, the filet mignon was perfect as almost a condiment, and both were almost tender enough to cut with a fork. The real cost? In the end, for us, somewhat less for the farmers markets meats. We eat less than half the meat, it's that satisfying. And we think it's healthier. - Ed Waggener

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