A COLLABORATION WITH EMILY BEGGS OF KIN + KITCHEN FOR EDIBLE MONTEREY BAY
Time spent at Windmill Farms and the beautiful mountain home of Ronald Donkervoort for a recent article published in Edible Monterey Bay. We have been collaborating with the talented Emily of Kin + Kitchen on a series of farmer profiles and recipes. Read more below and be sure to visit the full article on Edible Monterey Bay’s website.
From the article: AN ADVENTUROUS LIFE written by Emily Beggs
The circuitous journey that led a Dutchman to a life of contentment and a farm in Moss Landing
At age 68, Windmill Farm owner Ronald Donkervoort has the same mischievous twinkle in his eye that once mirrored sunlight reflecting off the iconic greenhouses on the outskirts of The Hague. If you’ve visited him at the farmers’ markets, it’s easy to picture a teenage Donkervoort speeding away from his earliest employment in his homeland’s glassed-in growing operations, skin stained green with tomato sap, hand on the throttle of a scooter purchased with freshly earned cash.
On 10 acres in Moss Landing, Donkervoort grows albion strawberries, heirloom cabbage, coveted winter squash, plump crisp carrots, German butterball potatoes freshly dug for each market, beets, greens, spring onions, leeks, zucchini, cucumbers and cilantro, “not for the money, but because I’m totally addicted to it.”
Aside from his own passion for the pungent and nutrient rich herb, “you guys dictate what I grow,” he says, referring to the direct community feedback he receives at farmers’ markets. Donkervoort is one of the few farmers who still personally sells his produce, and he stands out not only for his wealth of organic farming knowledge, but also for the blend of cordiality, humility and playfulness he bestows upon market goers.
“It’s very rich to be in my role in the community,” he says. “I see people being born, I see people die. There’s a certain trust you get when you grow people’s food.”