What does a grass farmer eat when left to his own devices?
Monday and Tuesday evenings I provide my own dinner at the farm. Usually this challenge is amply supplied by the tail-end of Susan's sumptuous meals, prepared the weekend before, but on occasion I have to create from scratch. So, here is a recent bachelor's meal, skimmed from the top of the larder: a pound of broiled lamb-ribs, as the first course; a pound of sauteed beef liver, with lemon wedges, as the second; and a rich, thick, homemade chocolate chip cookie, for dessert; all washed down with generous glasses of well-water. Totally satisfying and delicious! Given the fruit accompanying the liver, it could even be considered an out-of-balance, balanced meal. What's more, no conversation was expected during the meal, and clean-up occurred at leisure, many hours, if not days, later. This was a completely successful culinary experience, from one perspective.
This leads to reflecting on marriages in which there is time apart, producing "bachelor fare". Often one half of the union feels the two spouses are too much apart, while the other half often feels they are hardly apart at all. This peculiar phenomenon is further illustrated in one of Woody Allen's infamous movies, in which an earnest psychiatrist interviews an uncertain young couple, and asks how often they make love. She responds, "All the time" and he responds "Hardly at all!"
And so it is, that differences of perspective create vibrant marriages, the intensity of which can, thankfully, almost always be leavened by a good meal!
This picture, from a month or so ago, is of one of our eight Berkshires reaching for a mouthful of grass on the edge of their new woodlot. These eight are thriving, and so far we have witnessed no management issues with them.
We are pleased with the quality of pork from our first harvest. The thick bacon is well cured and is addictive to eat. Shoulder roasts are delicious, upon 10 hours of slow-cooking. Pork chops are tender and juicy, with a smooth clean taste. They are 1 1/4 inches thick, and require searing for two minutes on each side, in a hot cast-iron skillet, followed by 10 minutes in a 400 degree oven. We also offer bulk sausage, sausage links, and an Italian sausage - all mild. The consistency of overall product is impressive. None of this meat leaves one with a heavy lump in the stomach. If you like clean, tender, flavorful pork, these woodlot hogs offer a rewarding experience for both cooking and eating.
Pork chops, above left, uncooked, then being seared in the frying pan (to the right), out-of-the-oven (bottom left), and on-the-plate, with steamed apples, baked sweet potatoes, and Caesar salad. Remarkably good food, all from the Winter's Farmer's Market in Hyde Park - Mancino sweet potatoes, Becky's Romaine lettuce, Nathan's apples, and Grassroots pork.
We look forward to seeing you this Sunday, February 7, at Clark Montessori (3010 Erie Ave.), from 10- 1.
On-line ordering for delivery to East Hyde Park, Wednesday, Feb. 17, is available at: http://grassrootsfoods.biz/on-line-purchasing.
Drausin & Susan