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Simple Serendipidy

Everyday I’m inspired by my surroundings. Whether it be the company of the people or the nature that surrounds me I often find myself feeling truly grateful to have so many positive influences.

County terroir, what is it you might ask? Well to me it’s the couple that tastes and leaves with a bottle of PinotX2 only to come back 10 minutes later for two more bottles because they simply could not part with just one. It’s the couple visiting from Coburg who come to East and Main for a mocktail and nice meal only to return the next night because they enjoyed themselves so much and that virgin daqiuri was the best they’d ever had! Their stories are endless and they’ve all come to share in the experience of the County and depart with a little piece of their own County terrior. Whether it be in a bottle of wine, the memory of an unforgettable meal or a lovely piece of local art everything’s better when it’s made with care by people who care and that is something the County can be proud to do well.

Lately I’ve been helping myself to the all you can eat salad bar that my garden been providing. The taste of a fresh picked garden salad is almost indescribable. The kale is so crisp it’s hard not to eat it as you pick it from the garden and the beauty and peppery spice of a pumpkin orange nasturtium flower makes any salad as beautiful to the eye as it is to the tongue. My radishes look like ripe apples right now and I have trouble keeping up with them as they ripen. I wish I could think of something more creative than simply dicing them and throwing them into salads but perhaps I’ll think of something creative for next years crop.

In celestial news, if you didn’t notice the silvery blanket that was cast over your path last night look up tonight to gaze upon the supermoon. It is a supermoon because this is the closest the moon will be to the Earth this year so gaze away and enjoy the celestial wonder!

Sat Nam

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A Blank Canvas Painted Anew

 

As I stand in the sunshine if a sincere and earnest optimism, my imagination paints yet more glorious triumphs on the cloud-curtain of the future. – Helen Keller

Every morning is like a blank canvas yet to be painted. First the bullfrogs and song birds paint the air with their music then the sun peaks over the horizon spreading it’s light as the back drop for the performance that is about to unfold. Lately turtles have been the stars of each days performance in the County as they search for the perfect spot to lay their eggs.

 

My first encounter was last week when a snapping turtle turned up both my vegetable gardens before deciding they did not make good nests and moved on to a more suitable location. I also helped a red eared slider across the road on my way to the vineyard Thursday. Yesterday however a snapping turtle decided our graveled front walk was the perfect spot for it’s nest. I watched it dig the hole with it’s hind feet, lay it’s eggs, and then bury them so that if you hadn’t seen it you would never know what was hiding underneath that patch of gravely soil. We’ve put a marker over top and I really hope they survive. Turtle eggs make unfortunately great snacks for raccoon and other animals that have great sense of smell and seem to be able to find even the most hidden nest but I’m hopeful for these little turtles.

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The red eared slider I helped across the road. Remember always take them in the direction they are pointed!

But back to my poor unfortunate garden. Here is a picture of the turtle and the aftermath from it’s excursion through my garden:

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Needless to say I was a little defeated but I decided to take it in stride and see it as a chance to start again with a modified blank canvas. I salvaged what I could of the plants removed the weeds and headed to the nursery to pick up a few hardy seedlings and voila my blank garden canvas was once again full!

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My nasturtiums that I started from seed survived the garden overhaul.

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My gardens re-tilled and ready for a second planting

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Habanero pepper seedlings

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Tomatillo, celery, and leek seedlings

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Brussel sprouts and tomatoes

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Radishes starting to sprout!

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Lemon balm, red rose, lavendar, parsley, green and purple basil, and rhubarb

 

So here’s to the wonder that each new opportunity brings whether it be a new moon, a new day, or a new garden.

Cheers!

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A cercopia moth hatched out of it’s cocoon last week. Such a beautiful creature it only lives for a few days in this stage. Just long enough to find a mate and lay it’s eggs.

 

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Spiders, dirt, seeds and the miracle of life

“…the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere being.” – Carl Jung

And so it goes another moon cycle is at it’s height. With any luck you will have a good view of this months full moon. There’s just something so beautiful and grounding about a full moon. Although I am not being bathed by the glow of the full moon this evening I’m listening to the rain fall outside my window and marveling at the light show brought on by lightening in the clouds.

I love the rain especially when there’s lightening. It just seems so cleansing as though all the negativity is dispersing through it’s charges of lightening. revealing a lighter brighter world when it subsides.

It means good things for my garden as well. Which this year is two lovely strips of earth that cultivates rhubarb, sage, thyme, french tarragon, oregano, purple and regular basil, nasturtiums, chives, lavender, zucchini, eggplant, oka melons, lettuce, three varieties of carrots, poppies, green and yellow beans, four varieties of tomatoes, kale, brussel sprouts, and a rose bush because I love roses. It’s a mix of seeds and seedlings and it’s yet to be determined how prosperous it will be but I like to imagine it will be little my favorite Group of Seven painting, The Tangled Garden, wild overgrown and full of life.
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One new method I tried this year was to start my seeds in empty toilet paper rolls instead of plastic containers. It seems to have worked well. The only thing left to see is whether or not the rolls will degrade now that the seedlings are tucked in the garden.
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I’m also tending another “garden” or rather vineyard. I love watching the grapes grow. From unearthing the vines in early spring awakening them from their slumber, to the first bud break and the sigh of the relief that all our hard work burying them last fall was not for naught. I’m happy to report they are now all tired up and growing at an astonishing rate!
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It is so awe inspiring to watch something grow. Like an every day miracle that we have the privilege of witnessing. From a tiny seed into organisms that provide us nourishment transferring the energy they’ve collected from the sun to us so that we can live. So beautifully intricate and complex but simple at the same time.
The final complex being I’ve observed this spring with a similar curiosity and admiration is the spider. There are lots of spiders in the vines and in my garden and I can’t help but watch them as they go about their spidery business.
In honour of the spiders that have been my company this spring I have a poem by one of my favorite childhood poets, Shel Silverstein. I like to think this is what it’s like inside my head:
A spider lives inside my head
Who weaves a strange and wondrous web
Of silken threads and silver strings
To catch all sorts of flying things
Like crumbs of thought and bits of smiles
And specks of dried-up tears
And dust of dreams that catch and cling
For years and years and years…
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Red Moon Eclipse – A Journey Come Full Circle

Let us look for beauty and grace, for love and friendship, for that which is creative and birth-giving and soul-stretching. Let us dare to laugh at ourselves, healthy, affirmative laughter. Only when we take ourselves lightly can we take ourselves seriously, so that we are given the courage to say, :”Yes! I dare disturb the universe.” – Madeleine L’Engle

It has been 368 days and 12 moon phases since I started this journey with a resolve to nourish my body, mind and soul. By eating locally I discovered the interconnected web one can weave in their own community but nothing could have prepared me for the journey I have taken. I am so grateful for the perspective I have gained through this journey and the support of all those around me especially from my mom, dad, brother and sister (in-law). They were gracious enough to support me, listen to my laments and be my taste testing guinea pigs – for all of this I cannot thank them enough.

This journey has opened my eyes to more about the food system then I have been able to give justice to in this blog. I have a better understanding of the everyday privilege I have to live in a country where I have the ability to choose what and how much I want to eat let alone “eat locally.”

In this final post I want to mull over the influence of perception in our food choices and the potential absurdity of my choice to be a “locavore”. Specifically I want to think about the idea of being a “locavore” or “eating locally” across both time and within society.

Before the industrial revolution and the development of the current international food system everyone was a “locavore”. It was not trendy or a choice – it was a reality. Even today there are communities that still depend on their environment to provide them with all the necessities to survive while other communities could not possibly supply the community with all the nourishment they require. We forget that or at least I do. This journey helped me to better understand how important our environment really is to our survival.

A couple weeks ago I was asked to participate in a challenge to survive on $1.75 a day for 5 days to raise awareness for extreme poverty. So for my next challenge I will consume no more than a $1.75 worth of food a day for five days. I’d like to say I will simply turn to the bounty of my garden but with winter deciding to extend it’s stay here in Canada I imagine I will be eating quite a bit of stone soup that week… If you would like to support me and help raise awareness for extreme poverty you can do so by making a donation here.

The dynamism of the world we live in astounds me but it also encourages me. We are all guilty of our own bias. I don’t believe there is ever only one solution to a problem. But I do believe that there are right and wrong solutions depending on the situation. For example I believe in the merits of eating food sourced close to where you live but if where you lived had toxic soil I would change my opinion.

We can take comfort in the knowledge that the only constant we will ever know is change. Sometimes we can control the change other times we can’t. If we can adapt and grow with the change we are better for it, more flexible. As we learn and experience new things we lose our naivety for a fuller view of the whole picture. We choose whether to be guided by ideology and ignorance or curiosity and evidence. It’s not always easy to change and often times it is scary but, to me, the thought of spending eternity without change is petrifying.

And so that’s it, my final reflection on a year of local eating. Might I suggest mulling over this post with a nice Italian wine, aged Swiss mountain cheese and a french baguette in celebration of good food – local or not!

Adieu

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Love of Cooking

With February’s full moon falling on Saint Valentines day I thought it only proper to dedicate this post to the love of cooking. That said, I’ve never been more in love with a cookbook than first time I picked up Pellegrino Artusi’s “Exciting Food For Southern Types.” Written in 1891 it is, in my opinion, one of the most elegantly written cookbooks of all time.

A love of gastronomy and the beauty of a good meal permeates from every page in this century old book. Artusi describes cooking as an art that is continually renewed and improved upon never reaching a  point of absolute perfection. The dishes are elegantly simple and the instructions have an effortless flow to them.

Along with the recipes Artusi provides the reader with his meditations on food, cooking and society. He points out, “Many people eat more with their imagination than their palate.”  Accordingly, he cautions to withhold revealing the ingredients in a dish until after the meal has been enjoyed and digested. He remarks, “foods are considered inferior for the sole reason that they are inexpensive or because they evoke associations that some people might find distasteful. Yet these very foods when used well and handled correctly, make for good, tasty dishes.” A remark that holds equal weight today (although with the high incidence of allergies and intolerance’s in today’s society I cannot recommend following this advice for all ingredients).

In a note at the start of the book Artusi tells the reader, “I should not like my interest in gastronomy to give me the reputation of a gourmand or glutton. I object to any such dishonourable imputation, for I am neither. I love the good and the beautiful whenever I find them and hate to see anyone squander, as they say, God’s bounty. Amen.” As you read through the pages of this book you feel you are cooking with a wise old friend. One whom you can trust to never steer you wrong when following their lead.

If you are looking to renew your love of food and cooking I urge you cook with Artusi, a timeless read that is sure to remind you of the pleasure and wonderment food brings to life.

The following are a few lines of verse written about Artusi by a poet:

This little manual is about health and well being,
a true apotheosis of the taste buds,
Thanks to which a man can live a hundred years
Sipping life to the fullest drop by drop
The only joy people have (the rest are a mockery)
God entrusted to the talent of cooks;
So that you only have yourself to blame
If you do not have Artusi on your shelves
And you should call yourself an ass ten times over
If you have not learnt his precepts by heart
– An Admirer

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Thursday Thoughts – A New Moon Perspective

‘Greater public confusion about diet and health – is not insignificant and should concern all of us.’ – Marion Nestle

 

I recently finished reading Food Politics. In short Food Politics is just that, the politics of food. A quote from Dr. Joan Gussow that especially caught my attention, “.. if we view foods simply as containers of nutrients or curative substances, we encourage manufactures to think of more ways to invent more new products to meet some perceived health need.” She argues that foods should be appreciated for their richness and complexity of their taste and cultural context, as well as for nutritional aspects,“eating healthfully is neither complicated, nor time-consuming, nor punishing. And we don’t need any more new products to do it.”

This brings me to the Slow Food movement. A movement aimed at quality food often expressed in terms of its easiest avenue: local producers. Now this is not to be taken as an ideological or anti-globalization movement but rather a reminder of the pleasure of food and the enjoyment we receive by experiencing it through our senses. It’s a reconnection between our values and actions when it comes to food. It’s about looking past the advertisements and listening to our bodies when deciding for ourselves what we enjoy eating.

Look at it from this perspective: 72 hours without nourishment (food and water) and you’re dead. Politics and clever advertisements might be able to influence a lot of things but they can’t change that.

So local or not-local, eat what you love and love what you eat. Savor it, enjoy it and be grateful for it because without it you cease to exist – literally.

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Warmth During the Descending Moon Deep Freeze

The meaning of life is not to be discovered only after death in some hidden, mysterious realm; on the contrary, it can be found by eating the succulent fruit of the Tree of Life and by living in the here and now as fully and creatively as we can.—Paul Kurtz

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Ice built up on a branch after the ice storm that hit southern Ontario this past December

As we experience yet another deep freeze here in Ottawa we turn to the comfort of the wholesome and hearty bounty of the harvest. For me this is the absolutely satisfying experience and decadent combination of soft set jam of a thick slice of homemade bread. The perfect accompaniment to tea on a day such as this. Jam that pops in your mouth with the perfect balance between sweet and tart. The markings of fruit that was picked at the peak of perfection in summer and preserved for enjoyment throughout the winter.

December 23rd in Prince Edward County looking out into the icy winter wonderland left behind by the ice storm.

When making jam there are a few essentials that you should keep in mind:

The fruit should be dry, fresh, and at their peak ripeness or a little bit under. You do not want to use over ripe fruit to make jam. It is lower in pectin (i.e the jam wont set) and acid which are two important factors in jam making.

The amount of pectin in a fruit determines whether a jam will set or not. For example, strawberries, raspberries, peaches, and nectarines are low in pectin while black currants, cooking plums and apples are high in pectin. If you use a fruit that’s low in pectin you need to add a fruit that’s high in pectin or a liquid or powdered pectin to get the jam to set.

Fruit also contains acid which helps release the pectin but also helps to balance the flavour.

Sugar preserves fruit and allows jam to keep. It also helps the pectin to gel and stops it from breaking down while the jam is boiling. But it also inhibits the initial release of pectin so it should not be added until after the first cooking when the fruit is soft.

Traditionally, equal amounts of sugar to fruit would be used but if you prefer a jam that’s less sweet you can make a soft set jam and refrigerate it after opening. The later is my prefered type of jam and the recipe I’m going to share with you today.

 

Now a few preserving tips for making preserves:

It is important to keep everything CLEAN. All utensils and jars need to be sterilized. This can be most easily done by putting them through a dishwasher cycle and using them soon after or washing in hot soapy water and placing them in the oven at 340F.

You want to put the jam in the jars while they are still hot so it is important to time this part right just right. This helps to create an inhospitable environment for bacteria that could get in and wreck your preserves. It is also important to store your preserves in a cool dry place. This will help to protect them against UV degradation and allow the maximum taste and nutrient content to be maintained. Once you’ve opened the jar you’re exposing it to the threat of bacteria and need to store it in the refrigerator to keep them from making a home in your jam and ruining it for you.

 

Here is my recipe for strawberry rhubarb jam. This is a soft set jam that has a delicious balance between the sweetness of the strawberries and honey contrasted with the tart rhubarb. You will have to refrigerate this jam once it’s cooled to extend it’s life because it does not have the level of sugar to allow it to keep for a long period of time.

 

2 ½ cups strawberries

1 cup rhubarb

¼ cup honey

 

  1. Place strawberries, rhubarb and honey in a saucepan and heat on medium stirring from time to time.
  2. Coarsely mash the fruit with a fork so that you end up with a mixture that is part puree and part chunks. There should be a lot of syrup at this point. It should take about 20-25 minutes to mke but be careful not to let the pan burn.
  3. Pour mixture directly into jars and seal. This jam won’t set but is a lovely chunky, fresh – tasting puree

 

I often enjoy this jam with toast but it also pairs delectably well with yogurt or soft fresh goats cheese. Bon Appetite!

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“salt, sugar, smoke” by Diana Henry

*For more information of preserving check out Diana Henry’s book “salt, sugar, smoke” it’s a new favorite addition to my cookbook repertoire!

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A sampling of thoughts – Short stories from the harvest

“Accept what life offers you and try to drink from every cup. All wines should be tasted; some should only be sipped, but with others, drink the whole bottle.”  – Paulo Coelho

So where am I at in this local journey? Well I am 25 weeks and 5 days in, so almost exactly half way. Since we last met upon this interface I have undergone 35 days of extreme writers block, 4 vineyard visits, 1 farm day and the discovery of local oil – All very exciting things. It really was most unfortunate not to be able to communicate it all with you as it happened; But never the less I am here now and I will supply you with the Coles notes version as I sit here waiting for soup to stew and my squash to roast.

Where to start, well I suppose I will start with my quest to be involved in the grape harvest this season. I reached out to many wineries offering my help with the harvest in an attempt to immerse myself in the production of my favorite beverage, wine. I figured how could I go wrong combining my three favorite things: wine, chemistry and nature.

To make good wine is a science, but there are many variables. You need the perfect balance of climate and grape varietal to give you the proper acid to sugar ratio upon harvest and that’s just the beginning. 20130929_094459

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Harvested Pinot Meunier for making sparkling wine

When you break it all down wine making is chemistry. Vintners have scales, beakers, hydrometers and many of gadgets similar to a chemistry lab – It’s a dream job for anyone who loves chemistry and wine. I was lucky enough to get in touch with Tim and Michelin, the owners of Broken Stone vineyard who were gracious enough to have me out on their vineyard to help with the harvest. I had the pleasure of getting to know them in the vines as they told me their story and how they ended up with a vineyard in Prince Edward County. Why Broken Stone you might ask? Well within seconds of harvesting grapes in the vineyard you’d know. The rows are littered with broken stones which can be attributed to the limestone bedrock from which the county wine gets its unique Terroir, which is a whole topic in itself.20131005_125853

Needless to say, the harvest and first hand knowledge I gained from spending time in the vines was immeasurable compared to anything I’ve read in a textbook. I’m lucky enough to have the chance to gain more firsthand knowledge as I will head back out later this month and help with some of the winterizing including the tying down of the vines and hopefully get my hands into some of the fermentation process. You can bet you’re going to hear more about wine and wineries in future posts!

 

I was also fortunate enough to make it out the Ferme Tournesol with Dan Brisebois, COG’s past president. It was so exciting to finally make it out onto his cooperative farm. It really is such a neat model in that it allows the farmers to lead a more balanced life since the duties of the farm that would usually fall on one farmer can be spread amoung the group. It also allows them to do more. Their farm has a CSA, a farmers market stand and also a seed saving business.

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A walk through one of the greenhouses on our farm tour

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Stopping of the Arugula to separate the seeds from the plant

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Using various sizes of grates to separate the arugula seed from other debris

We got a seed saving 101 course as we saved cayenne seeds and arugula seeds. We also helped prep onions for market. The highlight of the visit though? The discovery of local sunflower seed oil from Le Moulin des Cedres! It turns out Ferme Tournesol’s landlord runs an organic grain and sunflower farm and they produce organic sunflower oil. After a summer of dressing-less salads this was a prize find.

I know this blog does not do this past month’s adventures justice but with any luck I will be able to provide more consistent updates with the change of seasons and the winter months.

So until next time Adieu

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Food for Thought

Do not use power to suppress opinions you think pernicious, for if you do the opinions will suppress you.  – Bertrand Russell20130831_213220

It’s important to listen and think critically about opinions of others. It is easy to become defensive or dismissive when presented with opposition or an opinion on a topic that is different from your own. But if you can listen to an alternate opinion and think critically about it you have the opportunity to see another perspective. In exposing yourself to different opinions and thinking critically about them before accepting them as truth or tossing them as trash you can have two outcomes: it can provide evidence to strengthen your point of view or open you to reconsidering your point of view in light of new evidence. Either way, opening yourself to differing views is positive. In fact it is probably the easiest and yet the hardest way to learn. Easy, because people are all too often eager to give an opinion. Hard, in that you have allow yourself to be open to a differing perspective and the potential that your perspective if flawed. This is ironic when you think about it because inevitably all our views are flawed by our inherent human bias. It is also encouraging, it means we will always have the opportunity to learn and grow. I dedicate this post Gurvir, Corina and France for sharing with me their ideas and perspectives, helping me to further develop my own.

Most people would agree that they want to be balanced as a person and respectful stewards of the land, yet our consumer culture is very unbalanced and destructive to the environment and ourselves. Most often this disconnection exists because we fail to make the connection between our individual actions and global issues. This is often the case when it comes to what we eat. When asked, many people agree that our culture of processed foods, hormone-injected meats and pesticide-packed produce do more harm than good to our bodies and the environment, but they continue to buy these products every day without giving it a second thought. Why? Because food and eating is an intimate experience and one of our most practiced habits. Habits as we all know are hard to change. Even the most practiced habits can be changed though and that change is easier if the information about why we should change our habits is made available to us.

The most common barriers people identify as keeping them from making the switch to organic are money, time and convenience. All pretty big barriers so you might ask, “how do I convince them that organic is the right choice?” To this I say the answer is simple. You don’t. In trying to “convince” someone you insert a bias that you are right and they are wrong which creates a negative dynamic. Since we are dealing with very personal and very ingrained habits they will more often than not feel threatened and become defensive no matter how great you think your argument is. This automatically sabotages your good intentions and places you at an even bigger disadvantage than you started with.

That being said, enabling others to see the benefits of choosing organic can be a very empowering experience. Transparency is a key principle to organic production which is something that is lacking in the mainstream food industry. Expose your friend to this by watching a documentary like Food Inc and sharing articles like Marion Nestle’s, “Food Politics.” This will allow them to reevaluate their opinion of the food industry and start making connections about the implication of their food choices on their own. With this new view our current food system you can open the discussion of how yours and your friends own consumer choices contribute to the problem and the solution. It is important to make them aware that in buying food from unsustainable sources, we perpetuate the cycle of animal abuse and slaughter, farmer exploitation, land and water depletion, and much more. It is even more important however, to contrast these with the positive solutions that can be achieved by switching to organic like supporting a sustainable cycle ensuring a healthier future for their families, their local farmers, the economy, and their own personal health.

In taking this approach you expose your friends to the hard hitting facts that are important to know but instead of creating a discouraging situation, you create an encouraging one. You have provided them with the information needed to justify adopting new habits and the support that is crucial to making sure these new habits persist

Now why not discuss the merits of our food system over a delicious local and organic pizza?

Dough:
1 cup of warm water
1 tsp sugar
1 tbsp yeast
2 tbsp oil
1 tsp salt
2 cups flour

Pour 1 cup of warm water into a bowl add sugar and yeast and let sit until foamy (approx.. 5 min)
Add remaining ingredients and mix until combined
Cover with a clean dish towel and let sit for 30 min (preferably in a warm dry place)

Tomato Sauce:
6 tomatoes diced
½ cup red wine
artichokes chopped
2 cloves of garlic diced
Fresh basil to taste

Saute garlic in a pan with oil over medium heat.
Add tomatoes, wine and artichokes
Let simmer for at least 30min.
Add basil and remove from heat.

Toppings – Choose your favorites! I used the following:
2 cups of grilled eggplant sliced
1 Jalapeno sliced

Shredded Cheese – Again use what you like, I chose this triage of cheeses because that was all I had. Mozzarella would have worked just as well!
Stilton
Appenzeller
Oka

Flatten out pizza dough on greased baking/pizza sheet or baking stone.
Add tomato sauce
Add eggplant and jalapeno
Sprinkle on cheese.

Bake in preheated oven at 425 F for 15-20 min

Remove from oven and let sit for 5 min to avoid the inevitable burnt mouth that will ensue from an over-zealous attempt to enjoy it too early!

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Full Blue Moon Reflection

Often we forgot to be patient but the garden reminds us that some things you cannot rush and the best things are always worth waiting for. I can vouch for that as I just pulled my first eggplant from the garden this morning. It was such an exciting surprise to find a nice ripe eggplant hiding under the big leaves in my garden. It’s hard to believe that four months ago France and I planted our humble veggie patch. We were both a little skeptical as to whether it would work but the tangled garden that has flourished is proof of our success.20130821_074204

Balance between trusting intuition and using knowledge is important in gardening. You can’t expect to have a perfect garden the first year you plant and frankly it is probably better if you don’t. When things go wrong you have the opportunity to learn from the problem and understand why it happened. This is very important because it gives you practice. You will be better at recognizing problems in the future and know how to fix them quickly.

I could ramble on about this all night but in lieu of that I thought I would keep it short and share my recipe for local three cheese mushroom artichoke quiche.

Preheat oven to 350 F

Crust

1 ¼ cup butter
3 ½ cups flour
2 eggs lightly beaten
1 tbsp cold water

Cut the butter into the flour with a pastry cutter. Make a well in the middle and pour in eggs and water. Mix until combined. Be careful not to overwork the dough or it with not be flaky.

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This makes two pie shells. You have the option to make two quiches or put the other half of the dough in the freezer and store it for up to 4 months.

Roll out one half of the dough into a circle and place in the pie plate. Remove any excess dough that hangs over the edge of the plate with a knife. You can use your fingers of a fork to imprint the edge of the crust into your desired design.

Filling

3 artichokes
2 onions
3 cloves of garlic
1 portabello mushroom
½ cup white wine
1 tbsp butter
Fresh Oregano – as mush as your taste desires

Dice onions and garlic and slice the artichokes and mushroom. Melt butter in a frying pan. Add onions and garlic and cook over medium heat until caramelized. Add white wine, artichokes, mushroom, and oregano. Cook until wine is reduced and artichokes and mushroom are tender. Set aside.

4 eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup cream
2 tbsp flour

In a large mixing bowl combine eggs milk and cream. Whisk in flour gradually to avoid clumps.

8oz cheese (I used grubec, cheddar, and old mountain cheese)

Alternated layering the caramelized vegetable mixture and cheese in the pie shell and pour the egg mixture over top.

Bake for 45-55 minutes

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Now you have quiche to enjoy and here is a quote to ponder while you reflect on this full moon.

To attain something desired is to discover how vain it is; and…though we live all our lives in expectation of better things, we often at the same time long regretfully for what is past. The present, on the other hand, is regarded as something quite temporary and serving only as the road to our goal. That is why most men discover when they look back on their life that they have the whole time been living ad interim, and are surprised to see that which they let go by so unregarded and unenjoyed was precisely their life, was precisely in expectation of which they lived. – Arthur Schopenhauer