Throughout this Dark Days challenge, I never go into each week thinking: Tonight’s dinner is IT! Time to post! Nope; it’s more like, what’s photogenic? I have, quite honestly, tried very hard not to show off for this challenge. No real food pyrotechnics or frankly anything terribly difficult for someone with less-than-average kitchen skillz; what’s the point? There’s enough to do just growing all this stuff, people! AND: that’s what I am trying to get you all to do: get out and GROW IT!
Tonight’s fare is, again, very simple. This morning, I started the bread on a fast no-knead schedule (normally, 12-18 hours, I went with 6: just up the yeast!) so I could take advantage of the sprouting spelt berries I had growing on the counter. Thinking, “what goes well with bread,” I retrieved a can of “bean starter” from my stash of canned goods and started some soup.
I’m always so happy when I can my dried beans for quick meals: there are jars of black bean/carrot/onion, black bean/tomatoes/peppers, lentil*/kale/carrot/onion, and white bean/kale/onion, as well as just plain jars of beans downstairs. I canned them in my pressure canner: I would make the bases when I was making some other bean-y dish; I would chop a whole bunch of stuff and then, in a couple wine-besotted evenings with a friend, canned them all. All I need to do now, then, is harvest something to augment one of those jars, or…open more of my own cans to create soup, chili or whatever.
Makes dinner really a no-brainer on those days I have no brain.
- No-knead loaf: half winter red, half winter white wheat ground up in my brand-new mill (!!) with sprouted spelt berries
- Stew-y soup: Black bean/carrot/onion starter, canned from our produce last October; one Mokum Red carrot, one Chantenay carrot, Red Russian kale, Lacinato kale, Par-Cel cutting celery and one Bleu de Solaize leek, all from the greenhouses; garlic from storage; homemade red wine vinegar to finish, with butter.
- Salad: Lots of reds in this salad, mostly lettuce. Vinaigrette made with our vinegar, herbs, shallot; nonlocal olive oil (duh!) and mustard. Nonlocal but home-sprouted alfalfa.
*Lentils are the only thing not home-grown. With only 2 beans per pod, good golly who has that kind of time to shell them!