Super Side Dishes to Top Off Your Thanksgiving Table
When the fall season makes you nostalgic for picturesque country living, stop at Abma’s Farm in Wyckoff. One of the only remaining working farms in Bergen County, Abma’s has been part of the fabric of our community since 1929, and the Abma family is now raising its fifth generation of farmers.
Managing the administrative office as well as many of the day-to-day operations is Pam Abma. She’s married to third-generation Jim Abma Sr., who runs the greenhouse and farm market. Fourth-generation sons Jim Jr. and Joshua along with their wives, Anna and Valerie, have also dedicated their careers to life on the family farm.
Located on a scenic tract of land on Lawlins Avenue, the farm is graced by its original farmhouse and country store, which is a 200-year-old Dutch barn. Both were built circa 1790.
“The barn was originally a three-story chicken coop that was converted into our farm market,” Pam says.
The farm-to-table movement has been alive and well for generations, as far as the Abma family is concerned. They grow and sell more than 95 varieties of produce throughout the year and plant small amounts each week in order to continually pick each crop on a daily basis. This ensures the freshest, most nutrient-filled produce locally available.
In addition to produce, Abma’s offers eggs from approximately 2,000 White Leghorn and Rhode Island Red hens on the property. They also offer honey from on-site hives; freshly baked cakes, breads and treats made on the premises in their bakery; and their greenhouses are filled with beautiful and seasonal annuals and perennials for your home and garden.
As a homegrown attraction, Abma’s Farm also features children’s birthday parties, school break camps, educational programs, floral and cooking workshops and unique events for the whole family. Bring the kids to visit their barnyard petting zoo during your shopping trip; it’s located right behind the market.
In preparation for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, Abma’s head chef, Tiziana—or “T” as she is better known—has graciously whipped up some turkey-friendly side dish recipes for your Thanksgiving table.
700 Lawlins Road, Wyckoff
1 pound whole cranberries
1 cup orange juice
1 cup sugar
In a heavy-bottomed pot, bring first 3 ingredients to a simmer. Simmer approximately 30–40 minutes. Chill and add orange zest.
16 ounces bread cubes
1/2 cup butter
1 cup onion
1 cup celery
3 cups turkey stock
2 teaspoons fresh sage
2 teaspoons fresh thyme
2 teaspoons rosemary
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons parsley
Cube and dry bread. Saute onion and celery in butter, add all ingredients and mix. Place in baking dish and bake 20–30 minutes.
Butternut Squash Soup
2 large butternut squash, about 6 pounds
3 cups water or more for desired consistency
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 onion, sautéed
1 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon nutmeg
Preheat oven to 425 F. Line a rimmed baking sheet. Slice squash in half and turn it face down. Add a little water, and roast until it is tender and completely cooked through, about 45–50 minutes. Set the squash aside until it’s cool enough to handle, about 10 minutes. Use a large spoon to scoop the butternut squash flesh into a bowl and discard the tough skin.
Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, saute onion in butter. Add squash, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Bring to a boil. Carefully use an immersion blender to blend the soup completely. Add a bit more water if you wish to thin out the soup. Stir in heavy cream. Taste and stir in salt and pepper.
Garnish with pumpkin seeds.