Archive for March 2012
Omnivorous flexitarian that I am, I still find myself in an off-again, on-again, feast or famine relationship with pork. It’s not the Jewish background: my Friedberg grandparents had their kosher friends over for ham. I’ve learned that meats as unctuous as pork–and all meats really–are best experienced as a condiment (with a nod to Thomas Jefferson and Chinese cuisine), used to compliment and flavor the fresh vegetables and whole grains that make up a bulk of one’s plates. Meat is a precious and rare resource, a great source of protein and sustenance that creates environmental challenges we can’t ignore. We should pay more for animals raised in a humane and Earth-friendly way, and eat less of that meat, with more reverence. With that spirit, this spring I signed up for our first (three-month) meat C.S.A.
At first, $80 a month (a $240 check) seemed a lot for three months of meat. But GTF charcuterie wiz Brad Burnheimer promised 10 lbs. of fresh cuts, sausages and bacon, from free-roaming heritage pigs. I picked my first box at Gathering Together Farm on March 2. Enclosed was the note:
Why don’t I cook with buckwheat more? I love soba noodles and (yes, mostly gluten-free, but that’s besides the point) buckwheat crepes. My sister, Elaine, and I once even did an ice-skating routine to the tune of “Buckwheat Cakes, Buckwheat Cakes, Along with Crispy Bacon.” I’ve had a lovely bag of buckwheat flour from Open Oak Farm in Sweet Home nagging at me all winter. So today I took the plunge, inspired by a buckwheat crepe recipe in Mark Bittman’s “How to Cook Everything Vegetarian.”
But first, we fried up some bacon (actually Italian bacon–tesa—cured with fennel, red wine and garlic) received this week our first installment of the scrumptious Burnheimer Meat Co. fresh cuts and cured meat CSA (more on that in a later post!). Then I griddled the crepes in the leftover bacon grease. We topped them with maple syrup and tangy balsamic plum sauce made by my KLCC colleague Jes Burns. Not bad for a simple Sunday breakfast.