The “Farmstead Kitchen” Series


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“What’s for Dinner?”

Sometimes it’s just hard to think of something to eat for dinner, even if all kinds of ingredients are staring at you from the cupboard, freezer, or fridge! I’ve been enjoying Pinterest lately, searching for recipes and gazing at mouth-watering photos. The only problem with some of these beautiful recipes is that most call for out-of-season and other store-bought ingredients. I try to use what is at hand in my farmstead kitchen, and that precludes following most of these recipes.

Eating for me is all about flavor AND sustainability. Eating is an agricultural act, as Wendell Barry has said. You literally vote with your fork each and every day for the kind of world you want to see in the future.

Being a farmer on a budget who happens to grow actual food (many farmers these days only grow animal-feed or ethanol crops like field corn and soybeans), I have a variety of fresh and preserved ingredients to choose from for meals. I raise pastured animals for meat and have a very diverse garden that feeds customers and ourselves, and I almost always have duck eggs (although only frozen eggs while the ducks enjoy their winter vacation). I can, ferment, cure, dry, freeze, and root cellar our products all spring, summer, and fall. Nevertheless, we all still get into cooking ruts and need some inspiration. I decided to begin the “Farmstead Kitchen” series as a way to broaden my own cooking horizons, while sharing what it is like to eat from a diverse farmstead throughout the year. Even if you don’t have a farmstead, we can all learn to focus on what is available in season from local farms and learn how to preserve food for out-of-season use.

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