Friday, February 17, 2017

Paper Trout

Although I'm not a vegetarian anymore,
I still don't eat beef, pork or poultry.
It was always a struggle for my mom 
to get me to eat meat when I was a kid.
The last time I remember eating steak (not ordered by me),
I covered it in ketchup
and my mom finally decided to give up on the idea of me being a carnivore.
It has just never felt right for me
so I embraced a meat-free diet for a good, long time.
For the last 15 years or so, I have eaten fish regularly,
and feel fortunate to be able to find a good selection at our local grocery store.

As we are trying to eat as locally as possible,
this North Carolina trout seemed to fit the bill.
I bought the whole fish so that I could keep the bones
to make my homemade bone broth.
(I'll tell you about this magical elixur soon.)

Cooking the whole fish is not something I've done before,
but I remembered a trick my mom had used.
Parchment paper is the secret ingredient.

The technique is known as "en papillote"
or "in paper", 
and it's one of the easiest ways to cook fish.
The bonus is that clean up is a breeze!

The fish was rinsed, dried and seasoned with salt, pepper and a little olive oil.
Any choice of your favorite seasonings would work.
They were wrapped in the parchment and the ends were twisted tight.
This helps the fish to steam and keeps all of the juices inside.

They were placed on the same baking sheet as some veggies 
I was cooking for a soup base.
After about 20 minutes in a 375 degree oven, 
they were done.

Open the package carefully, as it is extremely hot!
The fish comes out moist, tender and delicious.
The bones are easily removed 
and can be added to my stockpile in the freezer.

The same technique can be used with chicken, turkey 
or cooked beans for a vegetarian option.
I haven't tried it, 
but I imagine this would work on the grill too.

Each package is like a small gift for each diner to open.
Who wouldn't enjoy a tasty token? 

Gluten Free Fridays Sharing glutenfree recipes for all

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Farm School Visit

This past weekend, we took a trip back down south.
Big K had a ham radio event in Orlando,
and we had a few things to pick up that were left behind when we moved.

We had time to stop by and visit with Faye and Lynn.
It was bittersweet, as I miss these two generous souls,
but it is always good to spend time with them.

Of course, I got a tour of the farm.
Things are hoppin' and it was good to see
how well they are faring.

The mustards were exploding out of the containers.
Folks in this part of the south love their greens.

The eggplant was abundant.
Lynn said it is the best crop he's had in years, maybe ever!
(On Friday, I'll show you what I did with these beauties.)

The banana peppers numbered more than I could count.
The secret's in the sauce 
(turkey poop).

Tomato town was overflowing with gorgeous globes.
These plants look like the best crop I've seen since I've known Lynn.

Unfortunately for me,
they weren't ready for the pickin',
but it was good to see how vibrant and healthy they were.

This is the first time that Lynn is growing juicing carrots.
They were a request from one of his steady customers.
We were gifted with a couple to try them out.

There are plenty more where those came from!
Every pot was just bursting at the seams with juicy goodness.

Hootie the Owl supervised our tour.
It did my heart good to spend time with Faye and Lynn.
It's always a "hoot" 
and we enjoy talking about all things gardening.

They gifted us with a truckload of produce,
which, somehow, 
we managed to fit into the car for the ride back.
Oh, how I've missed Farm School.
But it remains forever in my heart.

Happy Valentine's Day!
Hope you get to spend it with someone special.

Simple Homestead Hop

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Birthday Wishes

Happy Birthday Sister!
May this new year take you where you want to be!

We are SO glad you were born.
daisy & crew