Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Melissa Doesn't Post Here Anymore

I've haven't checked out, just moved on. If you like what you've read here come over to Little Locavores where I explore family foods fresh from the farmers' market.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Local Lobster

Okay, maybe not. But with the exception of some lemon juice, all the ingredients that surrounded our East Coast crustacean were produced right here in the Midwest.

Needing to pick up some gift certificates for Purple Asparagus’ Corks & Crayons from Dirk of Dirk’s Fish, I knew that Sunday was going to be a fish night. Not until I saw the beautiful tangerine-colored chanterelles from River Valley, did I decide that my Piscean delight would come with claws and a tail.

Having grilled some delicious Black Earth bratwurst for lunch (paired with slaw made from Green Acres red cabbage and pickled Learning Shed’s green tomatoes), we used the last of the fire to give a smoky flavor to our chanterelles and 2 ears of Smit’s corn. We later steamed one lobster and browned the remaining chunk of my unlabeled Blue Marble Butter. While Mike pried apart our lobster, I sautéed a small shallot and 1 tablespoon of finely chopped green onion in a pan. As he sucked on the lobster legs, I chopped the meat and added it to the pan with the kernels of our smoky corn with about ¼ cup of the browned butter, the juice of one lemon and 1 tablespoon parsley.

So how was it? A revelation. Not because of the lobster, which was richly sweet and perfectly cooked. Nor because of the chanterelles, smoky and flavored with summer earth. But the corn. Oh the corn. The corn we wait a year for. This corn is a bare relation to the genetically engineered corn grown far and wide over the Midwest. The corn that reminds you why corn-fed is actually a compliment here in our Midwestern states. Paired with a rich, unoaked Russian River Valley chardonnay, it was the perfect way to end a weekend in mid August.

Photo Courtesy of Public Domains Pictures.net

The Local Beet Farm Dinner

I'm excited to be cooking at the first The Local Beet farm dinner, a multi-course, family-style dinner featuring locally-produced, seasonal ingredients. The event will be at Genesis Growers, a farm run by Vicki Westerhoff just 70 miles outside of Chicago. Vicki is intently focused on growing high quality produce and eggs without the use of pesticides, herbicides or synthetic fertilizers. Read more about Vicki and Genesis Growers here.

Currently, the menu is in the planning stages and will be determined based on what we expect to be available. Tickets to the dinner do not include alcohol, but the event is BYOB.

Click here to purchase a ticket.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Happy Birthday Edible Chicago

Thanks goes to Edible Chicago and Uncommon Ground for a wonderful evening. Many in the local foods communities came out to celebrate the first anniversary of Edible Chicago. All our wishes for many more (though I also wish to bite into that translucent looking raspberry).

Growing Home, Growing Community

Over at the The Local Beet, I describe the wonderful tour that I took of Growing Home's Wood Street Farm.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Micro Brew & Food Review to Support Seven Generations Ahead

Oak Park Microbrew Review

Event Date: Saturday, August 22, 2009
Time: 3-8 PM (note it's an hour longer this year) V.I.P. pre-event from 2-3 PM Event Location: Marion Street between South Blvd. and Lake St. / Downtown Oak Park

Seven Generations Ahead and the Illinois Craft Brewers Guild in collaboration with the Downtown Oak Park Association present the 2nd Annual Oak Park Microbrew Review. The event features tastings of 50 craft beers from 20 microbreweries from across Illinois.

Sample beer from the most skilled craft brewmasters; purchase food from the finest local restaurateurs; groove to the sounds of cutting- edge local bands; see sustainable best practices modeled through the event's zero waste component.

Admission is $35 in advance or $40 at the event. A V.I.P. pre-event celebration will be held at the new "green" Marion Street Cheese Market, 100 S. Marion St., Oak Park; tickets are $100 and limited to 50 people. V.I.P. tickets include admission to both the pre-event and Oak Park Microbrew Review, a deluxe limited edition tasting glass, and an event t-shirt.

All proceeds of the Oak Park Microbrew Review benefit Seven Generations Ahead, a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization whose mission is to promote the development of healthy, environmentally sustainable communities in the Midwest.

To buy tickets, visit Brown Paper Tickets

Friday, July 31, 2009

Healthy Home Tips from EWG

Lots of great things enter my inbox from people I don't know personally. New blog posts, funny articles, calls to action. The following tip sheet from the Environmental Working Group is too good not to share: Healthy Home Tips.

Enjoy and keep healthy!