The Saucerer and Amber Phoenix
The wife and I moved to Colorado from Nampa, ID in September of 2015. I was working in Life and Occupational Safety at the time, and Colorado was in my coverage territory. When I brought my wife out to see the Colorado Springs area and the edge of the Great Plains, that was it for both of us.
The kids are grown and off doing their things, so now was the perfect time to start taking on our own projects. With two cats, two dogs, four chickens (soon to be more) and an urge to semi-retire from city life and the corporate world, here was the place and the time to take up our dream goals.
My Uncle had a smokehouse and cafe for a long time. I’ve seen people come from a hundred or more miles to order his smoked shoulders, ribs and turkeys. For the longest time I wouldn’t eat anyone else’s ribs. And the sauce!!…. I really loved that! It was a vinegar base similar to a Carolina blend. Just enough spice to get your tongue moving, but not hot. He’d been making that sauce for 30 years, I’ll bet. He was taught by a man who had been making it for 30 years before that. I finally convinced him to teach me how to make his sauce in 2009.
As much as I love my Uncle’s sauce, in 2014 I decided it needed an update. I started experimenting with the structure of the recipe to make it a bit more modern. No GMOs, No soy, No MSG and No Gluten. Since I’m allergic to MSG and I had some requests for a gluten free product, it seemed like the right thing to do. Soy products just add complications and GMOs….well… no good can come from that, in my opinion.
We have a belief that good food should be as natural and local as possible. Our sauces are built around that idea.
The Ultimate Goal
We began learning of so called “food deserts” shortly after moving to Colorado in 2015. Food Deserts are areas where there is no source of fresh food in the community. People living in food deserts may have to travel 20 miles or more for food of any quality. This may not seem like a huge deal, however, according to the USDA many of these people and families to not have access to transportation on a regular basis. At that point, quality food may as well be in Brazil. Additionally, water resources are extremely limited in most states. The ability to grow fresh, quality food of any quantity is thereby limited as well. Since we live 45 miles outside Colorado Springs in an area that does not receive a lot of annual rainfall…… well, we were interested in options.
After quite a bit of research and some seminars, we discovered aquaponic greenhouses. These systems use a cyclical relationship between fish tanks and growing beds to produce large amounts of fresh food in small spaces with limited water resources. So, the ultimate goal at Silent-H Ranch is to use our sauces to facilitate the building of sustainable greenhouses so we can put quality food within reach of our community.