Friday, July 30, 2010

Carole's Concoctions

One of our favorite Boulderwood luncheon concoctions is the frittata especially since we have farm fresh eggs and our bountiful CSA harvest.  For this anything-goes-omelet concoction I sauteed our garden grown onions with zucchini and summer squash in olive oil until they are golden and slightly caramelized. When putting oil into the pan to heat up be sure to swirl it all around so all sides are covered.  The frittata will come out so much easier for you.

While those cooked I whipped 6-8 eggs (depends on your frying pan size).
Once the veggies were caramelized I added fresh herbs (tarragon, basil, parsely combo) and chopped garlic.
Here's a great garlic tip! Mash a 1/4 teaspoon of salt  into your chopped garlic then add to the saute mix until it gets aromatic and then add eggs. This will prevent burnt garlic syndrome.

Keep the stove top on low for 3-5 minutes until it cooks all the way through (don't let it get too brown!)  If you are a cheese lover like us now would be the time to sprinkle some cheese on top and broil it in the oven for 2 minutes.

Once you take it out of the oven it should slip right out of the pan for you.

Set the table, bring out some fruit, get everyone seated and enjoy!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Farm Girl Farm Thursday

While farmer Val is making her way back down to Florida for the remainder of the summer and then to Sweden we are happy to introduce the newsletter from one of our favorite Berkshire CSAs, Farm Girl Farm, that is written by our next favorite farmer gal, Laura Meister.  We hope you enjoy Laura's insights and delightful recipes that of course include in season ingredients!

Hello Farm Girl Farmers.

I may have mentioned before that I often read last year’s corresponding week’s newsletter before writing the current ones, and when I looked back at the one I wrote a year ago, it was all about the loss of our dear tomatoes.  Thank the harvest gods that it has been a very different year.  But the pathogens that cause Late Blight are around in small numbers this season, and we have been warned to take precautions.  We are spraying an organically approved fungicidal copper on our tomato plants—we started yesterday and will work our way through all 40 beds throughout the week.  Its not much fun—the stuff is supposed to be non-toxic in such small doses but still, it feels kind of yucky to work with, and it is incredibly time consuming—I estimate it will take 20 person hours to spray all of our plants.  And if it should rain or if the warnings continue, we’ll have to do it AGAIN in another week.  Hard to conceive of how we’ll find the time.  But given the spectre of another total crop loss, I’m spraying.  You should know that we will wait the recommended 24 hours before harvesting any tomato that has been sprayed but I do recommend that you rinse your tomatoes when you get them home, just to be extra safe.

For more information about Late Blight and the copper funcigide (we’re using Nu Cop), please see and click on Late Blight Alert.  This is a very informative website with links to other relevant sources. 

In other news from the field, I’m excited to begin to welcome the real summer veggies into our lives—we’ve got peppers beginning, as you see in your share, and eggplant trickling in, and we have seen one or two ripe tomatoes out there as we’ve been making our rounds. .  Its such an exciting and colorful time of the season! All of these crops are grown in our field across Pumpkin Hollow Road, which you can see from Rt. 71 if you’re heading west and remember to look down and to the right.  Meanwhile, we’re turning over the “home field,” the one you see when you pick-up your veggies.  We’re pulling all of the garlic, we’ll cure it in the greenhouse, sort the best and the brightest out for seed, and store and distribute the remainder for the rest of the season. We’re mowing down the crops that are finished for now, and we’ll rent a burly rototiller for a day or so and turn over all the vegetable residue and prepare the beds for the fall plantings.  We’ll do more beets, carrots, turnips, radishes, bok choy.  And we’ll also try a few things we didn’t do in the spring—broccoli raab did well last fall so we’re going to do more of it this fall.  We’re trying again with the broccoli, too—this spring it got so hot so fast we lost a lot of it to the heat (it bolted) and the weeds.

Speaking of weeds, we are definitely in need of helping hands—we have some beds of kale which are rather engulfed but which are otherwise healthy and harvestable throughout the season.  We’d like to keep these crops going and haven’t been able to keep up with all of it ourselves—give us a call if you’ve got a few hours and would like to get your hands dirty!

Enjoy the veggies this week.

--Laura Meister, Farm Girl Farm Farmer



Original recipe by Judith Janowski

2 cups shredded zucchini (8oz.)
3 eggs
2 cups granular sugar
1 cup cooking oil
2 tsp vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 cup chocolate chips
1 recipe Peanut Butter Frosting

  1. Preheat oven to 325 F. Line muffin cups with paper bake cups or lightly coat with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl stir together zucchini, eggs, granulated sugar, oil, and vanilla. Add flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, baking powder, and chocolate chips; stir until combined. Spoon batter into prepared cups, filling about half full. Bake about 25 minutes (about 15 minutes for mini-cupcakes) or until a wooden toothpick inserted near centers comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks for 5 minutes. Remove from cups. Cool completely. Frost with Peanut Butter Frosting.

Peanut Butter Frosting:
Beat 1 cup peanut butter, 1/3 cup softened butter, 1 tablespoon milk, and 1teaspoon vanilla with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Gradually add 1 ½ cups powdered sugar, beating until combined. If necessary, stir in 1 to 2 teaspoons additional milk until desired consistency.


Dill-icious(!) cucumber salad-

From the kitchen of Ruth Ballenzweig, Farm Girl Farm Girl emeritus

2-3 cucumbers
juice of 1/4-1/2 of a lemon
approx. 1 cup plain yogurt
small bunch of dill
salt and pepper to taste

Rinse and peel 2-3 cucumbers (I like to leave on some of the skin)
Thinly slice cucumbers into a bowl
Remove thick stems and loosely chop dill
Add yogurt, lemon, juice, and salt and pepper to taste
Stir and enjoy!

This a light, cooling summer salad. Double or triple quantities for a great potluck dish!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

We are LIVE! Wednesdays at Heirloom Meals Radio

Today Heirloom Meals Radio hosted the Fab 3, also known as the Aronson women. Leni and her two daughters, Steffi Karp and Lisa Newmann joined Carole for a hour long celebration of their family's Jewish-American food heritage complete with noodleful secrets and U.F.F.O. (Unidentified Flying Food Objects aka "hovering" food) tales. Today's show was an excellent reminder of the power of sharing meals together as a family and how our relationships with food and each other can continue to impact lives positively and deliciously. Leni imparted some wisdom that, "A guest is a gift from God!" so keep your ears, mouths and hearts open as you listen in on this fabulous Heirloom Meals chat.

Carole Murko 20100728 1300.mp3

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Hoofs, Claws and Paws

and Wings!

The Japanese Beetles have arrived and are congregating among Boulderwood's flowerbeds and lawn!  It is too bad that they are such pests because their colors are quite extraordinary and fun to look at.  Obviously native to Japan, these insects have no natural predators in the States so they can run amuck on plants like rose bushes, hops, grape vines and more by eating away the leafy parts.  According to some online sources, garlic, chives, catnip or soapy-water spray are some homemade deterrents for the Japanese beetle if you aren't into chemically insecticides like us and want to get rid of them.  Here, we actually don't mind insects so much.  The only spray we use on the farm is copper sulfate to prevent blight on our precious tomatoes.   With that said, enjoy your stay in the Berkshires beetles and bug buddies!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Ms Murky Mondays

The Three "F's"
I am reflecting on the weekend gone by and trust me the beach and the environs were lovely but the memories I carry with me are of food, family and friendship.

Food was and is a central theme to any gathering at my parents house and not surprisingly, I enjoyed a weekend with my Mom, Dad, sister and best friend, Anne Marie DeFreest  - making and eating amazing seafood. Friday night - fresh scrod baked with a garlic scape pesto, Saturday night - lobsters with homemade cole slaw and Sunday night - fettucine with a tomato pesto cream sauce with leftover lobster chunks.  Yep - all concocted, all delicious but all eaten and shared at a loving table.

And now I put out into the universe...please take care of Anne Marie - send prayers and love - she's having surgery tomorrow and I want her to know I love her and am sending every positive vibe I can muster up!! I am counting on you for our "old age" home!!!
Anne Marie :-)

Friday, July 23, 2010

Carole's Concoctions

Taking a road trip to the beach is the ideal concoction for this weekend.  On the menu will be shopping with mom, Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, fresh seafood and toes in the sand.  We suggest whipping up a similar delight. It's summer, enjoy it!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Farmer Val Thursdays

I'm moving on from interning at a CSA/restaraunt farm to concentrate on Boulderwood- the three cute couples: Jim and Carole, SO and I, and Burt and Uni; the horses, and the beautiful land. From now on I will be posting about my adventures with those guys and our exploration of the Berkshires and any farm-related things that I do, along with thoughts I have about agriculture, sustainability, and life.

Today, for example, SO and I will be scraping paint from shutters in the company of the adorable Burt and Uni. Then we will walk around Great Barrington, finally becoming acquainted with the city near which we live. Yesterday, we saw Kripalu and ate some of the best healthiest food I have ever seen together in one room. You should know where you live.

thou mayest...timshel

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

We are LIVE! Wednesday

Nothing beats a Montini sister's story, period. That conclusion we came to long before today's radio show which featured the local tales and memories of Donna Kresiak and Dale DeVarrenes, who also happen to be two of Carole's good friends. Growing up in what has been deemed the Little Italy neighborhood of of Lee, Massachusetts, Donna and Dale grew up making food a family affair- the likes of which Heirloom Meals as yet to hear of. If you look up 'homemade' in the dictionary you are likely to find a picture of the Montini family who boasted their own grappa, wine, vinegar, sausage, preserves, salami; the list goes on and on. It should go without saying that an hour with these two women was not enough to share with our listeners the amount of knowledge, laughs and history that they miraculously have between the two of them - but what a wonderful show it was! Press play and enjoy!

Carole Murko 20100721 1300.mp3

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Hoofs, Claws and Paws

This past weekend was the Brimfield Antique and Flea Market Show which is where we found these treasures in years past to add to our collection of beasts on Bouderwood.  Who knew that elk and lobsters could be found on the same farm and require so little maintenance and clean-up?!

The next Brimfield show starts on September 7th and ends on the 12th so be sure to mark your calendars!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Ms Murky Made for Television Monday!

A Picnic for a Hot Summer’s Day

A picnic is the perfect way to celebrate summer!  Here are a few tips for packing a moveable feast easily and safely.

Pack the Essentials
Make sure you're fully equipped for your adventure. Here's a list of essentials for your outdoor excursion:

   1. Picnic basket or cooler
   2. Bottled water (freeze overnight and use as an ice pack and drinks during day   as it thaws.  Pour a little water out before freezing to give it room to expand.)
   3. Outdoor dinnerware / paper goods
   4. Flatware or plastic silverware
   5. Napkins
   6. Glassware
   7. Corkscrew and/or bottle opener
   8. Tablecloth, blanket
9. Decorative centerpiece (hurricane candles, a cup of freshly plucked wildflowers, a beautiful dessert)
  10. Sunscreen
  11. Bug spray or citronella candles
  12. Trash bag and wipes

Pack food in airtight containers or sealed bags to keep freshness in .

Place ice packs on the bottoms of the basket or cooler when you pack your picnic lunch. Arrange perishable items closer to the ice.

If possible -  pack drinks separately.  It saves space and lightens the load of the picnic basket.  Chances are people will be reaching for more drinks than food – so having them in a sep. cooler keeps your food safer, as people won’t be going into the same one over and over – letting the cold out of the food container.

Pack lightweight items and anything that might get smashed last.

Put fragile things like fruit or desserts in hard plastic containers.

Cheers to summer! 


Cold Beet and Watermelon Soup
Herbed Brie Sandwiches (Brie Breads)
Oatmeal Raisin Cookies or any cookie of your choice
Arnold Palmers (1/2 iced tea/ 1/2 lemonade)

Brie Breads

A true Carole concoction with a grandmother-style non-recipe recipe!!  Well it's actually a Carole and Jo (my Mom) concoction that we made up years ago for my famous Murko Open Tennis Party.

Mince a ton of garlic and a mix of herbs - thyme, rosemary, dill - whatever....
Cut open your baguettes and sprinkle with olive oil, garlic and herbs, salt and pepper and add slices of brie (1/4 inch thick should do).  Wrap tightly in plastic and put in fridge overnight.  When ready to bake them - bake at 350 - remove from plastic and wrap in tin foil for 10-15 minutes until toasted and brie is melted but not runny.  Slice into 1-2 inch pieces and enjoy!!  For your picnic, place pieces in a plastic storage container and enjoy at room temperature.

Cold Watermelon and Beet Soup

Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE gazpacho and anything with tomatoes but I wanted to work with some of the other amazing items available at the markets during the summer.  And the combination of beets and watermelon are a match made in heaven for a cold soup on a warm day! Sweet, refreshing and full of nutrients.

1 bunch of farm fresh beets, greens removed, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 vidalia onion, peeled and chopped
1 Tbsp olive oil +/-
4 cups vegetable broth
1 tsp salt
2-3 cups watermelon, seeded and chopped.  What you want is equal parts beets to watermelon.
Fresh mint (some chopped and soem not, for garnish and flavor)  In may opiion, this makes the soup!!

Heat oven to 400 degrees.  Toss onions and beets with oil and place on baking sheet.  Roast until beets are soft - 30 minutes.  While they are roasting, cut up watermelon.  Put beets and vegetable broth in a stockpot and cook for another 10-15 minutes.  Strain solids and put solids in food processor (keep the liquid to add back in) Add watermelon to food processor and puree until smooth.  Mix the puree and reserved liquid.  Refrigerate for several hours. Serve cold, garnished with mint and Enjoy!!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Carole's Concoctions

Casual Summer Evening Supper for 4-6

What's on the Menu:
Vodka and Limonata
Cheese, Fig and Salami Board
Cold Beet and Watermelon Soup
Yummy Marinated Steak Tips
Roasted Fingerling Potatoes
Indian Line Farm Salad Greens Tossed with olive oil and balsamic vinegar
Homemade Blueberry Sorbet

The Recipes:

Cold Watermelon and Beet Soup
Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE gazpacho and anything with tomatoes but I wanted to work with some of the other amazing items available at the markets during the summer.  And the combination of beets and watermelon are a match made in heaven for a cold soup on a warm day! Sweet, refreshing and full of nutrients.

1 bunch of farm fresh beets, greens removed, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 vidalia onion, peeled and chopped
1 Tbsp olive oil +/-
4 cups vegetable broth
1 tsp salt
2-3 cups watermelon, seeded and chopped.  What you want is equal parts beets to watermelon.
Fresh mint (some chopped and soem not, for garnish and flavor)  In may opiion, this makes the soup!!

Heat oven to 400 degrees.  Toss onions and beets with oil and place on baking sheet.  Roast until beets are soft - 30 minutes.  While they are roasting, cut up watermelon.  Put beets and vegetable broth in a stockpot and cook for another 10-15 minutes.  Strain solids and put solids in food processor (keep the liquid to add back in) Add watermelon to food processor and puree until smooth.  Mix the puree and reserved liquid.  Refrigerate for several hours. Serve cold, garnished with mint and Enjoy!!

Yummy Steak Tips

Many moons ago when I lived in Boston I was friendly with a wonderful couple from Cambridge, Susan and Mac Rogers.  Although we are not in touch, their memory lives on every time I make this recipe as it was one that I had at their home.  Thank you Susan Rogers for your yummy steak tip marinade!!

Enough sirloin tips or hangar steak for 4-6 people.  Ask your butcher, they’ll hook you up with the right amount!!

1 large bottle of kikoman soy sauce.  I have replaced this with a large bottle of organic gluten-free, low sodium soy suace.
1 1/2 cups water
1 cup sugar (I use about 2/3rds)
2 cups diced scallopns
2 cups toasted sesame seeds
1/2 cup sesame oil

Toast sesame seeds in skillet over low heat until golden, stirring frequently. Combine all ingredients. Marinate  for 8 hours or overnight. For a little extra spice add some minced ginger.

Grill meat on a gas or charcoal grill to desired doneness.

The Party Favorite Fingerlings....

Blueberry Sorbet

Quart of blueberries, washed
Juice of 1 lime
Simple syrup - 1/2 cup water and 2/3 cup sugar

Make your syrup by combining sugar and water in saucepan over low heat until sugar is dissolved.  Cool. Put syrup and blueberries in food processor and blend until smooth.  Put mixture into ice cream maker and follow instructions of your machine. Mine processes for about 30 minutes and then it is ready to set up in the freezer for a couple of hours.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Farmer Val Thursday

How to start a CSA from scratch:

Have land you know you can farm for as long as you're planning on being in business: you have more of an incentive to take care of it. Begin by taking the results of your soil test(s) to heart and start cover cropping and improving your soil with organic amendments for at least a season. Understand the challenges and limitations of your soil before you start growing crops on it. In Florida, we have so low organic matter, that getting nutrients to stay in the soil is the biggest soil-related struggle, with nematodes(1) close behind. In Massachusetts, however, soil particle size is small and organic matter is high so pretty much everything that goes on, stays on; but you here in Mass have lots and lots of rocks that are difficult to till and otherwise bothersome to farmers.

You should start only with the land you can take care of with the equipment and hands you have. Know how you're going to sell your produce and to whom. Know what they want and how to grow it and how to get it to them the way they want it. Then start.

There's no use in overextending yourself or your staff in trying to do otherwise for any reason.

Also, your farm needs to have a draw: you should have available both the 'bread and butter' (maybe kale, potatoes, and green beans) and the impulse buy (honey, nuts, and sugar snap peas). Grow what sells and market it in the way that it will sell. Farming is definitely about quantity (low margins, yes) but if you have lax quality standards then it doesn't matter how much you have.

(1) related to flatworms and heartworms that afflict your domestic animals, also love to destroy the roots of plants in sandy soil

thou mayest...timshel

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

We are LIVE! Wednesdays at Heirloom Meals Radio

Today on Heirloom Meals Radio, 97.7 FM WBCR-LP Great Barrington, Carole reminisced with the author of Born Round, Frank Bruni, about the virtues and vices of growing up in an Italo-American household during the 70's. Describing food as the greatest currency, Frank shared with our listeners a wealth of memories that highlighted the immigrant ideologies that kept him well-fed, well-mannered and well-rounded, at times, to a fault. We encourage you to both listen in and turn the page to Frank's delightful and genuine experience as a boy with a ferocious appetite and a family who wouldn't take "No" for an answer.

Carole Murko 20100714 1300.mp3

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Hoofs, Claws and Paws

Here on Boulderwood Farm we have animals in barns, cages, coops, houses and pastures but there are other creatures that lurk in the neighboring woods that don't inspire as much affection as the aforementioned.    The other day at lunch Jim was telling us about the local and elusive fisher cat who's haunting child-like cry is virtually the only indicator of its presence. Its build is a strange one as it looks like a bear and weasel's love child.  Several years ago some of our neighbor's dogs had cornered one up a tree and we all went over to see what they were all making a fuss about.  After a while the cat surprisingly started making its way down the tree despite the pack of eager dogs circling at the bottom.   However, the dogs must have also been aware of the cat's aggressive and nasty reputation because we were shocked to watch as the animal was allowed save passage back into the tree line without any interruption.

Here is a video from Youtube out of Andover, MA where a woman's dog also had a fisher cat up a tree. Not so sure we agree with how she calls it baby, though.  These animals supposedly eat porcupines....

Monday, July 12, 2010

Ms Murky Mondays

Heirloom Meals is going on a road trip!  
At the end of last week we were invited by Country Living Magazine  to join them in Columbus, Ohio in September for their annual Country Living Fair (2010 Country Living Fair Ohio).  

Heirloom Meals will be performing 2 cooking demos there but with all that we are involved with this summer we have yet to decide what we will be sharing with our audience. Do you think you have a cherished family recipe/menu that could wow our fall crowd? As you know, we are always keeping our ears, eyes and mouths open to your dishes and stories so let us know!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Carole's Concoctions

What makes everything taste better but makes some things smell worse?


No matter who has been a guest on Heirloom Meals Radio we are always being handed recipes that use garlic.  Lucky for us, we happen to have garlic in all its forms around Boulderwood Farm and enjoy its delights in our meals at least once a day!  We pulled up one garlic bulb today and it appears as though my crop needs at least two more weeks until they can be harvested.

Although garlic bulbs get most of the press, garlic scapes, which used to be considered compost - not an ingredient, are the staple of our homemade garlic scape pesto.  You can also use them as a kind of exotic, sculptural floral arrangement! 

To make garlic scape pesto you have to muster all of your concocting genius. As a start, put 15-20 garlic scapes (cut into pieces) into a Cuisinart and add olive oil until you have a desirable consistency.  I like to add a handful or two of walnuts and grated parmesan cheese to taste.  If you have fresh basil or some other herbs/nuts/spices etc. you want to experiment with - throw them in!  Pesto is great on sandwiches, pasta, crackers, chips, cheese and a whole lot more so have no fear; whatever you come up with is bound to be good on something! Also, make lots of extras as this concoction freezes brilliantly.
One last thing about garlic...
If you would like to plant some garlic of your own stay away from supermarket bulbs since most of them have been genetically modified to the point of no return. Visit you local farm or farmstead and pick up the healthiest looking bulbs there and plant them in deep, rich, full sun soil around Columbus Day.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Farmer Val Thursday

Does farming have to be overwhelming? This question has plagued me since I started interning in Massachusetts. Are you always just catching up with everything that needs to be done? Are projects never finished? There must be a way to be both busy and on top of things. I think that you could stay at a farm four twenty four hours a day and still find things to do that are fairly important. But you should be able to complete the important things. I think that the measure of success of a farm should not only be whether the farm is financially viable but whether those important things get accomplished when they need to.

A measure of a farmworker's value is not how many beets or potatoes they can coax from the neglected beds, but what they contribute to the organization and stability (monetary or otherwise) of said farm, beyond the simple day to day. If you haven't ever been on a farm or don't feel involved in your CSA or haven't experienced a farm in awhile, it would do you well to take a tour if you are interested in understand what goes on behind your veggies. These weekly blog posts only let you see a little behind the camera.
thou mayest...timshel

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

We are Live! Wednesdays at Heirloom Meals Radio

Today we had Ruth Reichl join us for an amazing interview.  Watch, listen and learn about Ruth's both humorous and unconventional beginnings as a food eater and critic along with her insights to where food is going today and what this generation has to offer.  This video is number 1 in a 6 part series that you can watch on Youtube of Ruth's radio interview.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Hoofs, Claws and Paws

Just when we thought we were going to see a repeat of last summer, which brought us nothing but clouds and rain, we get hit with this tropical heat!  Will the Berkshires ever get the clement climate it deserves?  The animals at Boulderwood are just as curious but are certainly adept at finding cool solutions. 
The chickens trade the sun-struck grass for dusty barn floors...
The cows commune under the shade of trees and marvel at how the horses....
just don't seem to care....

Monday, July 5, 2010

Ms Murky Mondays

Weekend Reflections

Waitsfield, VT, The Inn at the Round Barn, Anne Marie DeFreest,Tim Piper, Jack and Doreen Simko, Paul Finnerty, and of course, my love, Jim Finnerty.  Time spent in a favorite place and with my favorite people.
Sunset Rock, the Long Trail,
East Warren Rd, Warren 4th of July Parade,
Thunder Road Stock Car Races,
dairy cows, starlit nights, great food.
Route 100, covered bridge, Mad River, No bugs.

A place I know so well and miss dearly.
A soul refreshed. A dream reborn.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Carole's Concoctions

As we meander into the 4th of July weekend I first wanted to reflect on what it is to be an American - and it just isn't all about the apple pie! We have the freedoms here in the USA to be and think freely; to embrace diversity and celebrate our independence through our diversity.

Ok, so what's cookin' in my kitchen this weekend?  Right now I have some vegetable soup on the stove - a great way to use some of the greens I have amassed in my fridge from the CSA. And because it's been quite chilly it will be a welcome item on the menu!!

My thoughts on food right now are to keep things simple like a spice rubbed flank steak, leafy green salad, beet salad, broccoli and fresh blueberries.
Here's my favorite spice rub recipe:
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Mix together, then rub into flank steak.  Place flank steak in a gallon freezer bag with any extra rub and place in fridge for at least 8 hours for maximum flavor.  Grill on stove top or outdoor grill - your choice! Slice it thinly against the grain and serve over salad or with potatoes (salad or roasted new) and any other farm fresh veggies.
Celebrate your independence!!  I plan on doing the same :-)

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Farmer Val Thursdays

Have you ever dug potatoes? You exert so much effort for the reward of smooth, dirty, lumpy, delicious new potatoes ready to be popped in the oven, covered in butter and rosemary, and savored. 
Another crop that requires more work than it would seem are tomatoes. Planting is enough of a chore: hours on one's knees, bent over, shuffling every two feet to spade more rocky soil, but that is only where the work begins. Tomatoes must be staked (have you ever pounded stakes?), trellised, and pruned. 

Time and sleep are precious commodities to those who work on farms. At least food is never a problem... Farmers always seem to know somebody who knows somebody who has what you would like to eat. Get to know a farmer.
thou mayest...timshel