Sunday, September 30, 2007

Fall Food

Jessica Weiss of Oregon, WI created the winning recipe for the Food for Thought recipe contest. We made it last night--yummy! You really need to watch the time and check them often, our next batch we will use a spicy salt. Try 'em yourself!

Kale Crisps

Kale (any kind)
Olive Oil
Cayenne (optional)

Take thick stem out of kale, tear into bite-sized pieces. Arrange in one layer on baking sheet, drizzle with oil and seasonings, mix with hands to throughly coat. 425 degree oven for 15-20 minutes until thin and crispy. Eat quickly and check your teeth for specks before going out!

There may be a run on kale next Saturday!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Local Night Out

If you are in the Madison area go out to eat today at one of the following restaurants. Ask your server "what's local?" And make sure to tell them that you are there because of their commitment to local food. Enjoy!

The Weary Traveler
The Greenbush Bar
The Old Fashioned
Fork and Spoon Cafe
The Dardanelles
Captain Bill’s
Ian’s Pizza
The Edgewater
Manna Cafe
Osteria Papavero
Washington Hotel Coffee Room

For more details click here!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Lettuce Confess

I have been in a sour mood lately--I have been wanting salad. I could have grown my own (I did in the spring) but September is not know for being lettuce season. So, I have been eating brassicas. But, I REALLY wanted salad. So, last night we went to an ordinary grocery store and I bought lettuce--from Delaware (they grow lettuce in Delaware?) Why am I confessing this non-local transgression? Because I want people to remember that there are always choices. Maybe I didn't make a responsible one (think how many gallons of gas that lettuce has consumed), but I did choose. Eating locally, using alternative power, recycling--none of it need be an "all or nothing" undertaking. During August we heard "Oh I could never do that!" about a million times. Well, you don't have to make a strict 100 mile limit to your food, you can simply make a choice to eat as locally as works for you. Every little bit helps, in all things that will change the world. As the old saying goes, "Just because you cantaloupe doesn't mean you shouldn't get married!"

Sunday, September 23, 2007

If you have trouble sleeping . . .make applesauce!

I made 31 more quarts of applesauce Saturday using Paula Reds from Eplegaarden. That brings our grand total to 48 (plus one in the fridge that I didn't process because we were going to eat it). I think I am done for the year (with applesauce). I used 12 dish towels and wiped the floor approximately 1,624,312 times yesterday. I also slept better than I have in weeks--making applesauce is good therpay for whatever ails you and is a heck of a workout!

September Bounty

We can't get enough Romanesco. I have been sauteeing it in butter and then cooking (covered) until tender, but not mushy, in garlic, chicken broth and salt--heavenly! From the looks of these pictures we are hungry for dairy this week! Blue Marble Micro Dairy had a sale on chocolate milk that was close to expiration date--$1! It will never even reach that date!

Amanda Cooks Martha

We received a lovely email today from Amanda who was inspired, in part by our blog, to eat more locally. She also plans to teach herself to cook with the help of the The Martha Stewart Living Cookbook. It sounds like an ambitious, fun and worthwhile project, we wish her the best and urge you all to check our her blog! (Just click on her name.)

Friday, September 21, 2007

Marco. . . .Polo!

If you've been reading a while, you'll recognize Marco Polo rules as eating local foods with "imported" seasonings. Here is what a recent meal looked like:

So what we have here is Willow Creek Farm pork chops with a really tasty glaze—maple/ketchup/soy/ginger and a semi-local ingredient, Gin from Death's Door Spirits (made from many Wisconsin ingredients, but greater than 100 miles), green beans from somebody local (don't remember who) and corn bread made with the corn ground by all the kids (and a few of the adults) who came to chat with us at the food for thought festival. We did use commercial flour, but instead of buttermilk we made it with clabbered milk (local milk soured with our homemade vinegar), bartered eggs, and everybody's favorite, bacon fat. If you are still not convinced of the merits of adding bacon fat to your diet, stop punishing yourself. You're a good person, you deserve it.

This is now a pretty typical meal for us. The overwhelming bulk of it was purchased in person from the person who grew it, and a few extras (all of which would fit into a coffee mug, I suspect) were added to give it some character. And after the way we operated in August, it almost feels as convenient as a TV dinner!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Applesauce Season

I made my first 17 quarts of applesauce this morning, all Paula Reds. The kitchen is warm and sticky and the house smells like hard cider. Autumn is truly upon us now and I feel the pull to put up more and more food!

Local Night Out

On Thursday, September 17th make sure you plan to eat out! The following is the press release from REAP regarding the 3rd annual Local Night Out--an evening when local restaurants showcase local food producers:

From pizza with the kids to an exquisite meal celebrating a special
occasion, treat yourself to a night of local foods at restaurants across
Dane County during REAP's third annual Local Night Out.

This year's Local Night Out launches the next phase of Buy Fresh Buy Local
Southern Wisconsin. Buy Fresh Buy Local Partners are a diverse group of
restaurants and cafes from casual to ethnic to upscale, each committed to
expanding their local purchasing from area farmers.

"We'll have great burgers made with beef from Fountain Prairie Farm for
Local Night Out," said Chef Bill Horzuesky of Bluephies. "We are excited to
introduce customers to Fountain Prairie and our other farmer partners."
Long-time supporters of the local food concept, L'Etoile is keeping things
fresh with a prix fixe tasting menu for $35 on Local Night Out. "We wanted
to do something special for Local Night Out and encourage diners to give us
a try" says Chef Tory Miller of L'Etoile.

This season's new partners will have their first opportunity to introduce
diners to the program as they serve up the freshest meals in town, all in
celebration of Wisconsin farmers. In the pilot phase, Buy Fresh Buy Local
worked with select Madison restaurants and retailers this summer to develop
their commitment to buying locally and telling stories of the farms they
work with to their customers. Developing networking tools, events and
marketing resources, the Buy Fresh Buy Local program will continue to foster
strong farmer-chef relationships this fall as the program opens up to a
broader range of establishments.

Local Night Out is an evening for Buy Fresh Buy Local Partner restaurants to
shine-really showing off what they can do with fresh local ingredients.

And it's our night to say loud and clear with our dining dollars, that we
appreciate their efforts to support local farms!

Participating Local Night Out restaurants this year are:

The Weary Traveler
The Greenbush Bar
The Old Fashioned
Fork and Spoon Cafe
The Dardanelles
Captain Bill's
Ian's Pizza
Cafe Montmartre
The Edgewater
Manna Cafe
Osteria Papavero
Washington Hotel Coffee Room

Click here for delicious details of
what each restaurant is planning.

Afterwards, send us an email and let us know where you went and how it was.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Changing Seasons

Wow! What an incredible day it was at the Food for Thought Festival yesterday. Scott and Evie and I were blown away by how many people came over to talk, ask questions and share their own stories. I don't think we stopped talking for 5 1/2 hours! Most people wanted to know what surprises we encountered, how we are eating now and our plans for the winter.

We said that the time it took to process food was the biggest things we noticed, along with the lack of cooking oil (not difficult, just noticeable) and the lovely surprise of peanuts. Our August diet was not much different from the way we normally eat. I have my coffee back and we are all enjoying chocolate again. Scott is using flour from North Dakota. Other than that, our eating is much the same as in August. September is such a month of bounty that we are eating well! As for winter, I am trying to preserve more than ever this year, I will be curious to see how local we will be eating in February!

Also at the Festival, Scott was interviewed for a documentary commissioned by the Animal Welfare Institute and I was interviewed by a journalism student from NYU. Evie got her face painted and ground A LOT of corn!

Our haul from market this week illustrated the changing seasons. Instead of green being the predominate color, the oranges and reds were making themselves known. Red peppers are in their full glory and the winter squashes are starting to make themselves know. We will make our first apple pies of the season this week--can't wait for that!

At the end of the day yesterday we sat down to eat as a family (at my parents' house). Family is definitely the best part of Eating In Place!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Food For Thought Festival

Join us at the Food for Thought Festival today down off the capitol square. It is a staggering confluence of amazing people and ideas.

Also, check out this article from the Capital Times newspaper--great info about where to get local food!

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Saturday Fun!

We spent the morning at the Westside Community Farmers' Market serving free trade coffee from Barriques Market and Crossroads Coffeehouse, thanks to Cam Ramsey from Madison Sourdough Bread Company for schlepping it to the market! It was wonderful to speak to so many people who had seen our story in the various papers. Of course our friends knew all about our 100 mile month, but to know that our story struck a chord with people we DON'T know was fabulous! If you are one of those people please leave a comment with your thoughts and stories!

We purchased our groceries at market yesterday, as usual. More apple varieties are in and the corn is dwindling. Red peppers are in full force and winter squash are beginning to make their appearance.

Saturday night we had a rollicking party to thank those who got themselves thoroughly muddy to help us build our mud oven. We made six pizzas in rapid succession and enjoyed the local cheese, meats and produce that made them so delicious.

We have added coffee and chocolate and "distant" wheat back into our diets, we even bought some crackers the other day. Really though, not much has changed since August--it is a yummy and busy time of year!

Thursday, September 6, 2007


Tomorrow morning (Friday 9/7) between 6 and 8 am on AM 620 WTMJ you can hear Scott in an interview he taped today talking about our month of 100 mile eating. I will post a direct link when it is up. The program is called Wisconsin's Morning News. This station is out of Milwaukee! We are happy that our story is hitting the airwaves! Tune in!

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Upcoming Events

We will be at the Westside Community Farmers' Market this Saturday (9/8) from 9:00-10:00 serving coffee at the info booth. Stop by and tell us your local eating adventures or surprise us with one of your discoveries.

Plan to attend the ninth annual Food for Thought Festival. There is so much going on, please follow the link and see for yourself! We will be at booth #43 talking about our local eating adventure and we will be right next to the folks from the Wisconsin Eat Local Challenge. Come on down to hear great speakers, learn about what is available here and meet folks who are as interesting as you are!

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Saturday, September 1: What is different?

We went to our two markets this morning as usual. The bright sun lit up the vegetables and we had several wonderful conversations with people who have been following our story. What was different about this Saturday? Well, I had already had a pot of coffee by the time we arrived at 7:30 am! We also stopped in at Cafe Soleil for croissants (oh how we've missed you!) Other than that is was business as usual. We bought a quart of chocolate milk today and some prepared pasta from Peter Pasta himself. We also bought cheese and yogurt and milk and apples and pork and bok choi and carrots and jicama and much more. The bounty continues . . .