Foodshed Celebration

"What's the occassion?" the cute guy asked. I'd prepared four different foods for the same meal and used the big plates reserved for company.

The night before there had been five different foods but he hadn't noticed as one of the foods was salsa which required I layer everything in a bowl to properly enjoy.

It was two days of unplanned celebration. In September I was confident that I would not be able to sustain local food meals through the winter. And stomp-my-foot sure that the summer foods I'd put up in the freezer would be gone by the end of the year. I pictured us withering away cold and hungry.

But I was happily wrong. The year round farmers' markets augmented with my freezer stash have completely kept me from the grocery store with the exception of one item stops for such necessities as baking powder, dish soap. Local Straus milk.

So I cooked. The big plate dinner was an egg and Santa Rosa cheese omelet. It paired beautifully with Marin Root Farm's mixed greens braised with leeks, along side roasted tiny potatoes (nearly too cute to eat). We had flat and ugly home baked bread with homemade butter that would make even a cereal box taste good.

The next night the salsa dinner started with a Sonoma County tortilla topped with leftover butternut squash, fried hamburger (it's been fifteen years since I could say that!) from a cow pastured on Grandma's old chicken farm.

The salsa was from my tomato and pepper freezer stash. And the final topping was inspired by another Dark Days Eat Local Challenge blogger, Green Bean. I mixed cilantro, shallots, ginger, olive oil and sea salt in the food processer. After inital pinched tastes we piled it on in great spoonfuls. Read - No Leftovers!

As much as I celebrate my foodshed I become ever more aware of the challenges facing our national and global food systems in terms of accessability, fair trade, enviromental sustainability, labor rights and our own national food security.

But change starts at home; Right?


Green Bean said...

Sounds delicious. We are so lucky to live in the Bay Area where we can eat like this in the dead of winter. I remember my husband asking, rather anxiously, how can we eat local all winter back in November. It's been a breeze and I've barely even tapped the reserves in the freezer - though I did finally use up about 4 cups of winter squash! Wahooo!

BTW, hope the cilantro chutney-type thing worked out for you. I'm become more adventurous with my cooking as I become more seasonal. These days, I feel like I can substitute anything!

Donna said...

Kale for Sale and Green Bean...just a quick note to let you know winter is not is thriving here in Mt. Shasta. I love reading both of your blogs to know that somewhere very close by beautiful things are growing. Purple anemones...year round Farmers! The only things growing here right now are the icicles from my eves and the snow berm in front of my house. The snow plow just rumbled by to remind me of that. Right now my dogwood tree looks like it growing cotton balls and the pine tree is wearing a white fleece jacket. So keep those photos and blogs coming. And I do know winter will fade into spring....someday.
Love, Olivia

Kale for Sale said...

green bean - Eating through the freezer is the next challenge at our house! Substituting has become a grand art. I call it creativity and then elegantly flip my hair over my shoulder.

Olivia - I love thinking of you at home in the quiet snow. Next year though, I'll have to make sure you have winter squash to sustain your longer winter. Really. It won't be a problem.

Donna said...

Thank you...and I will graciously accept your gift. Also, I meant to ask, the photo...are those yellow beets? I've never heard of yellow beets. Do they taste like red beets?

Kale for Sale said...

Olivia - They are yellow beets. Gorgeous with perfect greens that I'll use in soup. They're a little sweeter than red beets to me.

Anonymous said...

Kudos to you Katrina for continuing to buy local and be creative about meals at home. You are an inspiration to me. And healthy teachings from Michael Pollan have been enlightening and inspiring as well.

My success - I haven't bought a banana since September. I don't long for them any more.