Local Treats

Many people, including Matt and I, were thrilled to have an artisan bread vendor at market again. Patti Duffy of Bad River Bread graced market with some great breads this weekend. We picked up a peasant loaf. (We also came home with some Two Plus Three Acres grass-fed steaks, Springerridge green onions, Sweet Peas fudge bars, and Venner Farm fruit crisp.)

Sunday morning we treated ourselves to a nice breakfast before heading to the farm to continue transplanting seedings. Yes, still transplanting.

We toasted slices of Patti’s peasant bread. Fried a couple farm-fresh eggs. Then, topped it all with some torn B&G spicy mix lettuce. Sorry, no photo. Our plates were both emtpy before I even thought about a photo. Yummy!

Last night, we invited our friends, Joey and Christy, over for a mostly local meal. Honestly, I don’t know where to start with this meal. It was so good and I was looking forward to everything we ate last night.

Must start somewhere….so, garlic scapes. I keep calling them the little green snakes.

Garlic scapes are the flowering tops of garlic. We cut them off to let the plant focus on the bulb and they also indicate that the garlic is nearing maturity.

Cooking these was a first for Matt. We’d found a number of recipes, most of which were for garlic scape pesto. One of the shoppers at market bought some yesterday and said she loved them simply fried in butter. Of course! Why hadn’t we thought of that. Isn’t everything better when it’s fried in butter? So, that was the plan for our scapes. Fry them in butter. We did that (for about 5 minutes), but then Matt added the kickers…some heavy cream and Parmesan. They were like garlicky alfredo green beans, but tastier. They’re even good cold. (I made myself hungry typing about them, so I just went and had a small snack of leftover scapes.)

Next, the green onions we bought from Terry of Springerridge. They were really nice, thick, green onions. Matt drizzled them with olive oil, sprinkled with salt and pepper, and broiled them until they started to brown. We squeezed lemon juice over them and ate the entire thing….green, light green, and white. Oh my goodness. They were so good! (They aren’t pictured below because they weren’t quite done broiling when I took the photo.)

Now onto the fish. Local walleye caught by our friend Joey. Matt made a beer batter and homemade tarter sauce, including some homemade pickles. The batter was perfect. Crispy, yet light. The fish was flaky and mild. Excellent.

Finally, my favorite part of the meal…potatoes colcannon. Basically, this is mashed potatoes (Make them with real butter and cream. If you’re going to do it, do it right.) with cabbage.  After making the mashed potatoes, saute, steam, or blanch some cabbage. We used our napa cabbage, but you can use regular cabbage. I think the napa cabbage adds a nice texture. Anyway, before stirring in the cabbage, be sure to drain out as much of the liquid as possible. Stir together and you will have some of the best mashed potatoes around, and you’ll also get some greens at the same time. I cannot express to you how much I love this dish. The only thing that would have made it better would have been potatoes from the garden, but they are still about 2 weeks out.

All of us were very full and very happy at the end of our meal.

Local ingredients: peasant artisan bread, eggs, spicy lettuce mix, walleye, homemade pickles, garlic scapes, green onions, and napa cabbage.

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