Thursday, October 1, 2009

Local Eats Make Birthday Treats

Yesterday was Elusive Onions' first anniversary. To celebrate, I made my first 100-mile meal. I know, for someone who writes about local food it seems strange that this meal was a first. I've made several almost-100-mile meals, but there's often a cheat. My usual temptations are flour, olive oil, lemon, salt and pepper. With yesterday's dinner I managed to resist temptation, and the results were still delicious.

I had originally wanted to make an elaborate meal to celebrate, but time didn't allow for that. I stuck with simple, familiar recipes and adapted them to suit what was available. Salad, frittata and baked apples were the menu for the evening.

The salad and the frittata were the easiest to adapt to local ingredients. The only thing I missed was salt in the frittata. I felt it was a little flat, but I know to compensate with more herbs and aromatics in the future.

The salad dressing presented a bit of a challenge, but once I decided to use sweet rather than savoury ingredients in the salad I figured honey and yogurt would work for a dressing. That same dressing was then used to drizzle over the baked apples.

The baked apples required the most brain-work. It took me a while to banish thoughts of brown sugar and cinnamon. The brown sugar became honey, but the cinnamon required some creative thinking. I finally wandered out to my garden to see what herbs could work. I eventually settled on lavender. It was really the only herb that seemed suitable for a dessert. I think it worked, and there were no complaints from hubby, so I'm calling it a success.

Salad - Veggies and nuts from local farmers. Apple from a friend's tree. Thanks G!

Frittata - Eggs from a friend's chickens, veggies from local farmers, herbs from my garden, cheese and milk from Vancouver Island and Lower Mainland dairies.

Salad dressing - yogurt from Lower Mainland dairy, honey from the Farmers' Market.

Baked apples- fresh apples, honey, hazelnuts from local farms, lavender from my garden, dried apples from Sleeping Cougar Acres, (L provided the apples, I dried them.) yogurt from Lower Mainland dairy.

The dairy items traveled the furthest for this meal. The mainland dairies were right on the border of my 100 mile radius. I could have used items from Vancouver Island, but I prefer to use organic milk products where I can. So far I haven't found Island producers of organic milk and yogurt. Maybe I'll have to get my own cow. Or give up dairy. Those things aren't likely to happen, though I have given some thought to making my own yogurt. Someday. Far, far in the future. I sense a story in that!


  1. Thanks Daniel, and welcome. They were pretty good, if I do say so myelf.


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