This evening's Dinner was just simply yummy. This was one of the 1st meals of the season to feature produce straight from the Garden. As the Spring had went on, we found ourselves eating more from the grocery store. Yes, we try to eat "Organic". But the produce just didn't taste as good as that which we have raised on our little Farm.
Tonight's meal was very special. Everything on the plate was local (within a 50 mile radius). We had Beef Short Ribs on the Grill with Barbecue Relish. The Short Ribs came from a Steer that Rolf had raised. Melanie found the recipe for "Relish" in Barbara Kingsolver's book Animal Vegetable Miracle. The Relish is the 1st recipe in a special "3 in one" which Melanie made last year at the height of canning season.
We purchased the Sweet Corn from an Amish family in the northern part of the County last year. It was one of our last stashes in the Freezer, as we make space for the Goodies of this Year.
We had one of our all time favorites: New Peas and Potatoes (with New Onions too). When we lived in North Dakota, we would visit Richard's Mother in Northern Missouri during the early part of the Summer. She went to great lengths to serve up some favorites from her Garden; they meant that we were "home". New Peas and Potatoes in a White Sauce was among those at the top of the list. I can just see her smile as she would place that steaming bowl on the table. She cut no corners when it came to serving up the best of Farm Food.
Tonight, the New Peas, Potatoes and Onions were from our Little Farm. The Raw Milk for the White Sauce was from Brad and Jane's Cows over in the Linneus area. The Earth Balance (a buttery spread; ours was Organic) and the 1/4 cup of White Flour presumably came from more than 50 miles.
Melanie and I made a Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp. I was back-up. I prepared the Rhubarb and the Strawberries, while Melanie made the Crisp. The Rhubarb came from my Mother's patch, which actually was Dad's pride and joy. The Strawberries are among the last of the Season and they are from our Patch. They are small and delightfully mishapen, as if the Fairies tossed in some magic to give them free form shapes. Who said Strawberries have to be uniform shape? Those Berries carry that extra special "End of the Strawberry Season " taste. "Good-bye until next year" (if we are so blessed).
The Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp recipe also came from Barbara Kingsolver's book. I think she surely must have been on the welcoming committee as we settled into this Little Farm; of course, she didn't know anything about us or our move, but her book (Animal Vegetable Miracle) has been a steady presence and comforting Friend.
As per usual, Melanie made some alterations: she decreased both Sweeteners by half because we usually do that; the Flour was Whole Wheat; she used 4 cups of Strawberries and 2 cups Rhubarb because that is what we had. The Old Timers were always modifying based upon what they had. For a lot of years, I just made an extra trip to the store to buy more. That season has passed. Melanie tells me that she will top it off with Whipped Cream (again from Brad and Jane's Cows). I can hear those Beaters now.
I repeat: Yummy. This meal seems to be an opener for eating Local and eating Foods from right here on the Farm. "Let the Games begin."