Monday, August 26, 2013

Abundance and Transformation

You can feel it here.
Summer's grip slipping, like a setting sun.

In response, the abundance the earth is offering
is incredible

I have been crazily trying to transform 
all this beautiful abundance into lasting memories

This from Old Ackley Farm

 into this:

Corn ice cream with blueberry sauce

These beauties from Blue Zee

into something I can jar for winter

And these 

turned into an incredible supper one night,
over polenta with lentils and red onion

A friend and gardener asked me
 if I wanted some basil

On Friday I headed to the freezer with 10 pints of pesto

She threw in a few quarts of sun golds
because I don't have any this year

and I slow roasted them to produce
little candy like jewels 

Which I served with local goat cheese on bread
and it was like a cream cheese and jelly sandwich on steroids

The best part of all of this bounty is sharing

 I am so grateful for all the lovely people in my life
 who choose to share it with me

Thank you everyone for your abundant desire to
 participate in my summer of
 and giving me the chance to share all the wonders
of this magical place and time.

 May there be more to come

I hope you are all eating well and happy


Friday, August 16, 2013

Pulled Chicken Sandwiches

These sandwiches were a hit yesterday and I thought I'd share what I did
to the chicken because it was DELICIOUS!!

I served the pulled chicken yesterday on a homemade bun toasted with herb butter
with melted raw cheddar cheese and caramelized onions.

First of all, I am privy to Old Ackley Farm chicken -
which is the best in the world and if you are anywhere
near here you should run, not walk, to a farmer's market
where they are
 to get yourself some!

Proof that there is no reason to be afraid of a whole chicken:

Put the sweet thing into a pot that is just a tiny bit
bigger than the chicken

Sprinkle it liberally with Ancho Chili Pepper, dried thyme 
 and Kosher Salt

Pour equal parts of white wine and apple cider/juice into the 
pot to create an inch of liquid in the bottom
(don't pour it over the chicken or you will lose your spices)

Slice the top off a whole head of garlic and throw that in as well

Cover the whole wonderous thing with parchment paper and then
a lid of some sort - none of my pots have lids that fit so I use foil-

Place it in a 325 degree oven and let it melt into perfection 
This might take up to 4 hours - I like it so the legs are almost falling off-
Remove from oven and let rest a good hour, with the lid on

When cool enough to handle easily, but still warm,
take the chicken from the pot and squeeze the now softened garlic
 into the broth in the bottom.

 Pull all the meat from the chicken - don't forget about the wings
and those two little nuggets under the breast bone connecting the thighs
and add it into the broth 


This will also freeze well and you can pull it out some other time
for chicken tacos or a topping for polenta or.....



Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Here I am!

While visiting with a friend a few weeks back she described
a recent meal in a local restaurant as 
The word filled me with sadness for some reason and
I've been thinking about it ever since

My goal has always been 'Extraordinary!'
Even my failures have been spectacular

It means editing the adequate out
and rejoicing in things that make your heart sing

There have been so many of those moments this summer
both at Lily's and in my personal life;

The Oyster Fest! topping it all


The success of my Farmhouse Lunches

My extraordinary crew!

The private parties 

Betsy's Sunflower Shop wanting to sell my aprons after the craft show

Having time to experiment with technique
(After reading a Bon Appetite article I roasted my eggplant
directly on the coals - it produced an outrageously delicious
smoky flesh that I paired with greek yogurt and sumac over pasta)

My garden

Scoring these chairs at TJ Maxx

 Having time to nurture friendships

And the extraordinary passing of DOMA, giving me the
 right to legalize my partnership with
Renee, someone I have spent the last 17 years with,
creating all these spectacular successes and failures

Extraordinary doesn't have to be complicated
It is as simple as a smile, if your whole heart is in it.