"United we bargain, divided we beg."

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Local Food Trade Network Success Story!

All year long, I've been trying to source as much food as possible from within the county. I go to farmer's markets, and search for "locally grown" labels on produce at the supermarket, and of course our farm produces all the eggs and milk products we need. More, in fact. So much more that I instituted the trade system! Since about May, I've been trading our excess eggs for organic produce from local gardeners, and occasionally for such treats as homemade marshmallows (Thanks, Phil!).  I think this has been a good deal for everyone involved, even if there was occasionally more kale in the fridge than any one family could reasonably eat. 

But not until yesterday did the trade system really score a big bonanza. A friend who pressed cider with us last year called to say she had 13 pounds of fresh chantrelles, which she picked herself just the day before. Well much as I love mushrooms, and I do, 13 pounds is a bit much. But we got one brown paper bag full to the top, maybe three pounds, in exchange for a pound of chevre, a dozen eggs, and a package of bacon from our hog. As you can see, they are beautiful! Just setting them on the counter perfumes the whole kitchen with a lovely light, spicy, woodsy scent. I couldn't wait, and had a mushroom breakfast this morning.

Chantrelle Breakfast Burrito:

Heat up a large cast iron skillet with just a tiny smear of olive oil, almost dry. Roughly chop a big handful of fresh, clean chantrelles and dry-fry over pretty high heat. They will give off a lot of moisture. Just keep turning them while this moisture boils off. When they are starting to look a little dryer, maybe ten minutes, add a tablespoon or so of finely minced onion, salt and pepper. In a separate pan, melt a tablespoon of butter over medium low heat. Add two lightly beaten eggs. If you have some you gathered the same morning, so much the better. When eggs begin to set around the edges, add mushrooms and a tablespoon or so of grated asiago or pecorino romano cheese and some finely chopped parsley. There is a high mushroom to egg ratio here; the eggs and cheese are sort of a binder to hold a bunch of chantrelles together.Do not overcook! Eggs should be soft. Right on the burner or in a dry skillet, heat a flour tortilla until browned in spots, about 15 seconds each side. Put tortilla on plate and eggs on tortilla!