Tuesday, February 8, 2011

2/5-2/6/2011 - Days 21-22 - Farmers' Market Day, eating out & making CHEESE!

This weekend went way too quickly, dear readers! How is it already Monday? Here's an overview of where our time went :)

Saturday - Because of Superbowl festivities on Sunday, we were forced to switch-up our regular Sunday Farmers' Market ritual. This week we headed to a different market held on Saturday & picked up lots of goodies for the week! A whole chicken, a couple steaks, honey, 2 lbs of frozen cherries (mmm, pie!), & some other odds & ends to help us round out our CSA delivery for this week. We had originally planned on picking up breakfast at the market, but this unfamiliar market did not have the ready-to-eat selection we are used to from our regular market so we left looking for more immediate food.

We headed over to our neighborhood greasy spoon for some standard diner fare. Eggs over easy, toast & hash browns for me. Some sort of scramble/omelet dish for DBF. Yeah, I have no idea whether or not anything in our breakfast was organic or local, but we were still supporting local business, right? The spirit of this project is to eat as sustainably as possible, not to get caught-up in rules.

After breakfast, I dropped DBF at home & headed to the Beer/Wine/Cheese-making supply near our house. I've been thinking about trying to make my own cheese for a while & recipes I've found online sound fairly straightforward. We eat a LOT of cheese in this household & the local organic stuff is just SO expensive. By making cheese myself I can get a beautiful local product for a fraction of the cost! I picked up the basic supplies I needed & then finished-off my shopping trip by stopping at our local organic grocery for supplies.
Everything you need to make cheese: Big pot, milk, thermometer (that goes down to at least 50 degrees), liquid rennet, powdered culture, & a sterilized pillowcase (not pictured)

I followed this straightforward recipe: http://www.thefamilyhomestead.com/makecreamcheese.htm

It was SUPER easy! Just warm the milk, add the rennet & culture, let set undisturbed for 16-18 hours, strain the curds using a sterile pillowcase for 8 hours, DONE! The hardest part is getting the stuff back out of the sack.
I hope to have more pics for you in the future :)

Saturday night DBF & I went out to eat to one of our favorite regular spots, Pies & Pints (mmm...comfort food! + plenty of leftovers!) Then went over to a friend's house to hang out & watch movies. It was a good day :)

Sunday - I honestly spent the first half of the day playing Lego Harry Potter on xbox which I am completely addicted to :) I did make a batch of homemade butter first, though. Then DBF & I went to a big Superbowl party at our friend's house to watch the game. We pigged out on pizza & junk food, but hey, what's life for if not the occasional indulgence? :) After the game we came home & I made a big batch of granola for breakfast for the next couple of weeks.

To summarize the weekend, we indulged in some non-local non-organic food (though there definitely were some organic Cheetos on Sunday!) but I worked hard to make my own "value added" local organic food (butter, cheese, granola) for consumption this week. As with all things, moderation is important. If 95% of all of the food I eat is local organic, that really does go a long ways towards having a smaller carbon footprint & contributing towards my health & the health of the earth. But that 5% wiggle room to enjoy eating out & snacking on game day makes this whole project truly workable & practical. :)

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