Yummy Grub

An October Rose broiler.

“Is that all you get to eat now?” a colleague asked me the other day as I munched on my customary jar salad lunch in the break room. I don’t volunteer updates about our 10-mile challenge outside this blog on account of people’s circumspect reaction, like they’re afraid I might share an un-flattering opinion about their food choices or worry I’m on the cusp of selling them Amway. But as my own eating habits have changed conspicuously and food is something people are oddly inclined to notice and inquire about, word has gotten out. “I couldn’t do it,” she added. “Bland food just isn’t my thing.”

Bland food isn’t my thing, either.  I think the biggest shortcoming in the buy-local-and-fresh movement is that its evangelists often fail to give flavor equal billing with the health and economic benefits, especially when flavor — more than any other value — will ultimately win over the masses. Me, I ignore these overplayed topics. Nobody likes being told what to eat or where to shop so I focus instead on what truly matters: yummy grub. Simply put, eating local and in-season is very delicious.
Byrne Angus beef plus green bean 
salad and cornmeal squash croquettes.  
But there are hazards.
Take last Saturday for example. I arrived late to the Skaneateles Farmers Market to discover all that was left were summer squash, green beans and radishes. That’s it. In season, sure, except I’ve hated summer squash and green beans since childhood and I don’t even know what radishes are good for except to be carved into little veggie tray roses that everyone thinks are cute and nobody actually eats. But the market is where I acquire most of my food so in desperation I bought all one vendor’s remaining summer squash and a quart of green beans from another; I passed on the radishes because a girl’s got to draw the line somewhere.
Meadowood Farms lamb kobobs
As I drove home it dawned on me that maybe this eat local idea was crap and dinner was definitely going to suck.
I should have anticipated The Husband’s unflinching acceptance of my paltry offering. He pulled a couple Byrne Angus steaks out of the freezer, consulted the Internet, and whipped up a summer green bean salad and a batch of cornmeal squash croquettes. Delicious. Saving the day. Reminding me not to judge food by past mutilations.
The Husband’s lamb, spinach and
homemade pasta dish made with
Meadowood Farms lamb sausage.
So yeah, my colleague was right: my family is eating lots of salad this summer. Lots. But tons of other stuff, too. Turns out this experiment has nothing to do with depravation or returning to some romantic time of old. It’s about luxury – making fresh, delicious food in good company; working together in a space that now serves a greater purpose than propping up the night’s pizza box.
I’m convinced no girl in the history of humankind has ever had food so good.

Evenings in the kitchen with The Girl have been plain awful.
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  • Reply Teri July 5, 2012 at 12:46 am

    You can roast radishes if you get tired of eating them raw. Same procedure as with other roots: splash with olive oil, salt, pepper; spread on a baking sheet and pop into a 400-degree oven. Stir every 10 minutes or so. Take them out when they’re done to your liking (probably no longer than 30 minutes). I like to eat them at room temperature, added to just about any salad of any kind.

    • Reply binkley July 5, 2012 at 12:16 pm

      We’ll pick some up tonight (if they’re still available) and try it. Thanks Teri!

      –The Husband. 😉

  • Reply kareydk July 5, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    Sean was supposed to bring you in a whole bunch o’ radishes from our garden. Are you 10 miles from us? We did the roasting thing with them last night and it was delish! We roasted them in foil on the grill, same as above but add an ice cube and some minced garlic. 10 minutes and then flip and cook 10 more minutes. I served them over wilted spinach. That harsh taste they have raw was completely gone. Even T approved! He asked for more!

  • Reply Megan July 7, 2012 at 3:17 am

    I love everything about this post…. the writing, the food, the people, and most of all, the evolution of this experiment into a profoundly beautiful experience shared with those whom you love most!

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