What We Eat – August III

I get a lot of questions from curious people who hear our self-definition as a homestead farm about what eating locally and seasonally actually looks like. They can’t envision not going to the grocery store every week with a premade list and getting whatever they want for whatever recipe they’ve found interesting that week. Rather than post pages and pages of philosophy, I think the best way to demonstrate our approach is through example. After several prods from friends and readers, I’m initiating a new series of posts tracking just what we eat year-round.

We’ve been keeping daily diaries of our food consumption and its sources since last December, partially inspired by the fascinating photo-journalism book Hungry Planet, which documents what a week of food looks like in communities and cultures around the world. The contrasts, while generally predictable, are stunning and thought-provoking when laid out before your eyes. Anyone who’s reading a food blog will value this book.

Anyway, the goal of my new series is to give a real-life example of seasonal menus, but also to provide a forum for posting more recipes and cooking ideas on this blog. So far I’ve done a poor job of addressing the “food” side of this “food and farming” forum, and I want to use this to correct that. What I’ll do each week is post a list of our meals, and highlight a specific recipe or dish that was especially interesting or worthwhile. While I don’t believe in reproducing cookbook recipes online for copyright reasons, I’ll give an approximation and a reference. Often we don’t use cookbooks but just make it up ourselves, and those of course will be described in full. On to the food, for which I’ll do the past two weeks to kick us off:

August, second week:

Saturday: Homemade pizzas (dough from scratch, topped with various combinations of potatoes, onions, tomatoes, cheese, peppers, and basil). All produce ours, cheese home-made.

Sunday: Ricotta-tomato tart, with sides of cucumber salad and green bean salad. All produce ours, cheese home-made.

Monday: Chicken vegetable soup, including okra, tomato, garlic, squash, beans, onions. Chicken ours, butchered on Sunday, all produce ours.

Tuesday: Chicken gumbo, including okra, tomatoes, and peppers. Chicken ours, produce ours.

Wednesday: Leftover soup, with side of Greek salad (chunk-cut tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, red onion, home-made feta cheese, balsamic-oregano-garlic dressing). All produce ours.

Thursday: Leftover gumbo, Greek salad.

Friday: Penne with chopped tomatoes, basil, and home-made mozzarella. Pasta bought in bulk, produce & cheese ours.

August, third week:

Saturday: Sandwiches (market bread, home-made cheese & veggies) and fresh Greek salad.

Sunday: Gazpacho (fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, herbs, onions, blended into chilled soup). All produce ours.

Monday: Penne with fresh basil pesto and Greek salad (we like Greek salad).

Tuesday: Tomato vegetable soup – sauteed onions, garlic, & paprika covered with chopped tomatoes, okra, and potatoes – the tomato juice becomes flavorful broth for soup.

Wednesday: My take on penne arrabiata (spiced tomato sauce on pasta) using tomatoes, hot peppers, garlic, basil.

Thursday: Green beans, squash, and peppers in a coconut curry sauce over rice. Coconut and curry not ours; rice grown by an independant Missouri farm.

Friday (tonight): Fresh salsa over black beans & rice. Recipe to follow in next post.

3 thoughts on “What We Eat – August III

  1. Thanks for that rice farm link, we’re looking for not-too-distant sources for bulk food purchases. We’re joining a co-op here and probably going to buy a share of local produce next year, but some things are going to be harder to find!

  2. Is flour something you can source locally or do you have to go to the grocery store for it? We’ve got a good source of organic flour up here, which we have been using exclusively, but nothing local. I’ve been buying black beans from a local organic farm, though, and they’re fantastic.

  3. Right now we can’t, but I’m working on that. Several local bakeries grind their own flour (though the wheat isn’t local), and I’m working on them to see if they’d consider selling some flour on the side. I’d like to generate a market for it. Our dried beans are purchased in bulk organic right now. Last year we grew some of our own dried beans, and this year planted a lot more but had a near-total crop failure due to an interrelated combination of weather and neglect. ALso something we’re working in. We do have fresh edamame coming in (look for a post on that soon).