FOOD AT KROKA
Food is life. We give thanks to the gracious bounty of the earth. The work of tending, as our ancestors have done, the health of the soil, plants and animals, provides profound nourishment to human communities. Working the land through the seasons connects us with each other and the earth and directly impacts our health. If we are attentive and respectful of our food, that respect increases our sense of belonging to something greater. Here at Kroka, we strive to live, work and eat with reverence for the earth.
But the heart of matter,
The flesh and blood of rock and water, earth and sun.
Food is not a commodity
Which price can capture,
But exacting effort,
The life work of countless beings.
With this cooking I enter
The heart of matter.
I enter the intimate activity
Which makes dreams materialize.
-Edward Espe Brown
Communal cooking of delicious wholesome meals over a wood fire is an important part of a Kroka experience. Students take turns gathering ingredients from the farm, garden and the forest, cooking, cleaning and tending the fire. Most meals are vegetarian, and we work to eat meat we have a relationship with: fish that we catch, chickens from our farm, or meat that is raised at local farms. While many ingredients are grown at camp and on local family farms, we also purchase local and/or organically grown products as they are available. We emphasize three nourishing meals per day and provide snacks in between as needed.
Accommodating Special Diets
There are limitations to food and cooking in a wilderness setting, including refrigeration, weight, and cooking equipment — and some needs are greater than we can provide for. We reserve the right to refuse students with exceptionally severe food allergies and/or dietary restrictions. If you or your child requires a special diet while at Kroka, please click here for more information about what we can or cannot accommodate.
We seek to grow as much of our own food as possible for every facet of our community. from our semester school to summer programs to school group journeys. We delight in the early spring greens and the late summer raspberries. We enjoy delicious rich raw milk from our dairy cow, eggs from our hens and meat from both, as well as fish we might catch as we travel. The food we cannot provide enough of, we source locally and organically. We count our food producers as our friends. The wood-fired oven of Noah Elbers at Orchard Hill Breadworks makes us all the bread we need. Harlow Farm helps us meet our produce needs. Walpole Creamery provides us with world-class ice cream.
“My son has said many times that Kroka had the most delicious food. He was raving to me the other night while we drank some peppermint tea how I just can’t understand how good hemlock tea is when you are in the woods and collected the hemlock yourself.” – Kroka Parent
Living and eating at Kroka is integral to our intention of expanding and deepening our community. From the morning chores of milking, weeding and wood-splitting, all are involved in the creation of a delicious wholesome meal. Students take turns gathering ingredients from the farm, garden, and forest; cooking, cleaning and tending the fire. Cooking at Kroka is a unique experience. You may find yourself constructing a spunhungen from which to hang your cook pots, building a fire high about the snow on a fire-screen, or roasting your bread the traditional way, on a stick.
For children away from home, the comfort and familial-time provided by a community meal are critical. We emphasize three nourishing meals per day and provide snacks in between as needed. While the food at Kroka may be different from what some students eat at home, we ask them to keep an open mind and try a small portion. We often eat a first course of a meal with a conversation about this food’s story, and gratitude for all the beings that helped this food arrive in our bowls. This helps to heighten students’ awareness and not waste any food. We love to help students discover new foods to enjoy.
Wild, Unprocessed, and Unpasteurized Foods
Please note that students may be offered or served a variety of wild, raw, and unprocessed foods. Examples of this include wild blueberries, fish caught in lakes and rivers, raw milk from our dairy farm, fresh pressed cider and herbs and vegetables from our garden. If you have any concerns about this, we would be happy to talk with you.
Longer expeditions require food that has greater endurance and packability. We take pride in a diverse and delicious menu, but it is important to realize there are limitations to the types of food we can carry and store on expeditions.