January 30, 2010


I was really happy yesterday to find pears in the local apple shop. Wager's Cider Mill has a huge assortment of local apples, cider and happy to say there are still pears! The cider is great with no preservatives added. Beware though the entire store smells like the donuts they make and sell!! :)

Wager's Cider Mill, 256 East Main St., Penn Yan, NY

January 28, 2010


John has started a yearly tradition on Thanksgiving Day, making sauerkraut. We both love it and he was inspired to make more after our large purchase of six heads of cabbage earlier this month! Last night he finally declared it ready and we had some with pork, mashed potatoes and carrots. The sauerkraut was fantastic! This time he used a small amount of onion, a little less salt and added caraway seeds. It had a really nice flavor and I am thrilled there is so much more of it in the freezer!

There are many added benefits to eating sauerkraut, one of the largest being lactic acid which promotes healthy flora throughout the intestine. Check out the article in the 'Edible Finger Lakes' magazine. A beautiful head of cabbage is on the cover! http://www.ediblecommunities.com/fingerlakes/

January 26, 2010

January 26, 2010

When I first started local eating for 60 days I had been inspired after reading how messed up processed foods had become, even organic processed foods. I wanted to get away from them completely. The huge surprise I have experienced is how much better I feel. It is really clear to me that the 'fake' food I was eating before affected me daily. With each meal I consume I feel more committed to eating real. I cannot believe it took me this long to figure it out!!! Now if I could only call my Grandmother Jensen, boy would we have a lot to talk about! :)

January 25, 2010


I have never been a big fresh fruit eater. I know I should work harder at this, and I do buy fruit. There are always bananas, apples, tangerines, grapefruit and other fruit when in season in our house. I just don't eat it, unless it is in a pie!! Yesterday I noticed the local NY apples were starting to get a little soft, so decided to make applesauce. I just cut the apples up after peeling and coring, added 2 tablespoons of honey and some cinnamon. Simmered for a while until pretty soft and then used my hand held mixer to smash them up. Very easy and I really like applesauce. Ate a bowl yesterday and today!

January 23, 2010


I definitely have missed having a beer these first three weeks of local eating. While in Wegman's (Canandaigua) last week I searched in their large beer section, (they actually have a New York section) for local beer. I found Custom Brewcrafters 'Canandaigua Lake Ale', produced and bottled in Honeoye Falls NY. I had no idea what to expect and finally popped one open last night. I was pleasantly surprised how highly drinkable it was!! The ale was a light amber color and had a really good flavor. It is priced about $1.50 higher than a six pack of Corona, so affordable as long as you are not a beer guzzler :) I am really interested in going to visit their business and trying some of their other beers. The six pack has a great photo of their microbrewery, directions and hours of business, and another great touch on the box is the date the beer was bottled. Mine read, JAN 06 2010. So apparently there are other beer drinkers buying this product at Wegman's as well! Check them out at www.custombrewcrafters.com

January 20, 2010

Butternut Squash Seed Oil

I found this local oil recently at the New York Wine and Culinary Center's gift shop. It is a 100% cold-pressed oil from Geneva NY. No chemical alterations like many vegetable oils on the market. The flavor is outstanding! I used it to coat potatoes before roasting in the oven. They recommend it on salads and as a dipping oil for bread. It is rather costly, but worth the investment if using once or twice a week. Stony Brook offers it online at ... http://www.wholeheartedfoods.com/

January 19, 2010

Dinner Last Night

Cooking meals using all local food has been very rewarding. I am planning meals much better now as I can no longer just throw something together. In the past if I was running late I would rely on pasta and work around that. Last night we ate Lamb (given to us from John's Dad, marinated with local mustard, garlic and honey), Broccoli (from the garden frozen, topped with NY cheddar), and Potatoes Gratin (made with creme fraiche and John's demi glace). I am really thankful we have such an assortment of meats in our freezer. We raise beef and chickens here and John's Dad has given us his pork and lamb. Friends have given us lake trout and venison also! A really fantastic site to find grass feed meat is www.eatwild.com The site has a state by state directory to help you find local farmers near you.

January 18, 2010


Kale is one of the few vegetables you can harvest from your garden in January. John actually did this week! I cleaned,chopped and boiled the kale last night for dinner. I added butter when done and John jazzed it up with some vinegar. What a really great green treat! Kale actually tastes sweeter and more flavorful after a frost. In the garden Kale rarely suffers from pests or diseases. While other cabbage family plants are attacked by aphids, the kale gets almost none. Kale is loaded with vitamins and pretty rich in calcium too. I am going to try and grow more than one variety this year. Russian Red looks good.....

January 17, 2010

Local Whole Wheat Bread

I picked up the assorted loaves of bread yesterday that I had ordered from a local co-op. The baker used freshly ground whole wheat to make a general whole wheat bread and she also sprouted the wheat and made a loaf with the sprouted grain. This morning we all had our first piece. John made Ben and I a nice breakfast of eggs and potatoes and buttered toast on the side. The bread was very dense. You could actually see pieces of grain as you sliced it. It was surprisingly very good. I would compare it with eating a cookie. I say surprisingly good because it did not look like normal store white bread in the least. I had another piece with honey and have to say I really liked it. The bread came without an ingredients list though and I am very curious to know if any honey was in the dough as the bread seemed a little sweet. It also looked like there was zero yeast used. I am going to start looking into recipes using ground whole wheat and I think my next move will be to buy some freshly ground flour and experiment with baking some loaves myself. I will try to plan ahead and pick up the flour the morning I bake as I have read within 24 hours up to 40% of the nutrients have oxidized. In three days up to 80% of nutrients have oxidized. So when they say freshly ground, they mean it!! We did not try the sprouted wheat loaf yet...but in the picture attached it is the loaf that is taller and lighter in color. I'll be sure to comment on the taste after we give it a try !!

January 14, 2010

Whole Grain

In the quest to stay local, I have started to read about the evils of white flour and the benefits of using whole grain. Processed white flour is missing two very healthy parts of the grain, the germ and bran. These are removed so the flour won't go rancid. I found a local co-op that freshly grinds their wheat and bakes bread to order. I ordered a few loaves and will see how they taste. Sprouting wheat and soaking the grain can be nutritionally beneficial as well. For me, one step at a time. I am anxious to see how fresh ground local wheat bread looks and tastes. :)

I actually haven't missed bread in my diet. John and Ben on the other hand cannot go without it.


I have been eating eggs for breakfast every morning since I started this local adventure. I used to skip breakfast, but now I really look forward to it. We raise our own chickens and sell eggs, so we always have a surplus. In the summer the chickens run outside in the sunshine eating grass and bugs. They eat such a large amount that their grain ration goes way down! This makes their eggs high in Omega 3’s and other nutrients. In the winter months we give the chickens the chaff from the clover hay, so they still are getting some green in their diet along with their grain. Pastured hens eggs actually have 34% less cholesterol than factory farm hens. Just one of many reasons they taste 100% better.

January 12, 2010

Salty Snack

I really miss a salty snack at night after dinner. John showed me in December, I could take the squash seeds, clean them, salt and lay out on aluminum foil and bake on low heat until crisp. I knew you could do that with pumpkin, but they are actually really enjoyable from squash as well. I made some tonight from the acorn squash I baked for dinner. Looking forward to a little crunch later! :)

January 11, 2010


"Eaters must understand that eating takes place inescapably in the world, that it is inescapably an agricultural act, and that how we eat determines, to a considerable extent, how the world is used." (The Pleasures of Eating, Wendell Berry)

January 10, 2010


My daily diet has consisted of mainly eggs, vegetables, meat and potatoes. Sometimes I find myself in the middle of the day feeling like I need a little sugar. It is hard to explain, it's not like I am dying for a cookie, more like my brain needs a push. Our neighbors gave us two jars of unpasteurized honey over the holidays. One tablespoon does the trick! We actually have a small bucket of local unpasteurized honey in our kitchen too. John loves honey and now it is my only sugar. I am still working on local grains, so no baked goods yet. In the meantime I will sneak spoonfuls of honey. :) Unpasteurized honey provides maximum health benefits. No enzymes or other naturally occurring substances are destroyed. Unpasteurized honey is loaded with amylases, enzymes that digest carbohydrates.

January 9, 2010

Cauliflower with Corn Soup

Last night I discovered a really good combination I had not had before. I started with chicken stock (from our hens), and chopped white onion (John grew this summer), boiled until the onion was starting to soften. Then I added two bags of frozen garden Cauliflower and simmered until the Cauliflower was tender. I then added some white pepper and curry powder and using a hand held blender, pureed. Right before serving I added two tablespoons of creme fraiche and heavy cream. Bowled the soup and topped with our own sweet corn! John added a red pepper for a garnish, which went great with the soup! We had the soup last night for dinner with roasted rooster (mixed some local white wine with the drippngs), mashed potatoes, and kale. Pretty good.... :)

January 8, 2010


One of the best things I've discovered this first week of eating local is raw milk. I purchased the milk twice from Galens Homestead Acres in Clifton Springs NY. http://www.localharvest.org/farms/M11777
It has a great taste and I have skimmed the cream off the top and made homemade butter and creme fraiche! First let me tell you about the butter. Wow! It was unlike any I have ever had, even better than Elmview Dairy! (That is hard to beat!) Besides the unique flavor, it was super easy to make. I watched a few people make it on youtube first! The creme fraiche is new to me. I had if for the first time while at my husband's sisters in PA. She used it with my husband's demi glace, and with thyme butter. This was a sauce for homemade mushroom perogies. Blew us all away! Creme Fraiche is used in place of sour cream.
You can read all about raw milk's benefits and where you can find it at these two websites: http://www.raw-milk-facts.com/index.html

January 7, 2010

Great Website......

I have found a great website called Local Harvest -real food. real farmers. real community.
Check this site out for great produce, meat, grains, raw milk and just so much more. Type in your zip code and see what people are raising and selling near you!

January 6, 2010

January 6- Fresh Lettuce!

It has been 6 days without a salad. This doesn't sound like an extremely long time, but when deprived, and with the thought of 60 saladless days, it really felt longer. Ellie and I had some errands to run today which included our local Wegmans. We did a little more hunting to try and find local NY food. We found a great surprise in the lettuce section, beautiful lettuce from Ithaca, grown by a company called Finger Lakes Fresh. www.fingerlakesfresh.com I purchased a huge head of Boston lettuce and also Romaine. These lettuces are grown in a hydroponics greenhouse with no pesticides. I really had no idea what I would use for dressing, as the only local oil I have found is a first cold pressed Butternut seed oil. It has just too strong of a squash taste for lettuce. I also have no local vinegar at this time. I decided on red onion that John grew from the garden, cut up local apples, bacon bits left over from breakfast, and shredded local cheddar cheese. Even though I missed the dressing it did taste very nice and completely satisfying!

January 5, 2010


"The local heritage-based food movement represents everything that is good and noble about farming and food culture. It is about decentralized farms. Pastoral livestock systems. Symbiotic multi-speciation. Companion planting. Earthworms. It is about a community-appropriate techniques and scale. Aesthetically and aromatically sensual romantic farming. Re-embedding the butcher, baker, and candlestick maker in the village. And ultimately about health-giving food grown more productively on less land than industrial models." (Joel Salatin introduction to The Raw Milk Revolution by David Gumpert).

January 2

Big surprise today :) After chores John and I decided to go food shopping! We still had bones left at our local butcher that needed picked up. They were from our two steers we last took in. More demi glace on the horizon...
After picking up the bones we stopped at a local farmers and bought 2 bushels of potatoes, a bushel of squash, and 6 cabbage. He had a huge walk in cold cellar where they were stored. Good timing as he said he was about to dump it all in the field. He just doesn't sell much after January 1. Last we went to the farm with the raw milk for sale. Big coincidence they were selling milk the same day. They sell twice a week. You bring your own containers. We brought one huge gallon jar and two half gallon canning jars. The milk house with the bulk tank was spotless. The gentlemen selling the milk was great. He explained how he used to have more cows and had less time and less profit. You could tell he really enjoyed what he was doing now. I believe he milks 20 cows a day and in his words has time for his life and family now. OK...so the big question is how does it taste. It looked beautiful in the jars and John stated it was the right color and shine. We immediately drank a glass when we got home. It was really fantastic! We were both pretty happy.

Ben helped me take all the produce to the basement and Ellie helped me move it into crates to turn our stairwell into a cold cellar. The temperature is about 36 degrees in the stairwell so it should work pretty well.

Ate leftovers for dinner and had peppers from the garden with Cuba NY Cheddar cheese for a snack.

January 1

The first day I woke up pretty foggy from too much New Year's Eve! Took one cup of coffee to remember it was day one :) I had milk for my coffee from a local New York Dairy that purchases milk from 250 New York state farmers. They have their own butter, cream, buttermilk and a few other dairy products. This would really be my only option if it wasn't for the fact that in New York state it is legal to sell raw milk. I am pretty anxious to try raw milk after hearing all about if from my husband. He drank it the first 18 years of his life and proudly proclaims it is the reason for his great health and vigor!! I highly recommend reading about the benefits of raw milk and also the book 'Raw Milk Revolution' by David Gumpert. Also visit the website www.realmilk.com/

Having our own eggs, meat and vegtables, I wasn't too worried about not preparing yet. Eggs and bacon for breakfast, prepared by my sister-in-law, which was a treat, eggs again for lunch and butternut squash, beets, corn and pheasant for dinner.

January 3, 2010


Before submitting daily posts, I think the inspiration for this adventure should be shared. It happened really accidentally. My husband and I have always been food lovers, and have tried to eat healthy since the beginning. He was very lucky and grew up in a household where they raised 99% of all they ate. He and his sisters had years of great nutrition, not to mention great food! I have always had a deep love for food and the memory of certain meals are some of my best recollections.

When the movie Julie and Julie was about to be released I bought a copy of the book and while at the book store bought 'My Life in France' by Julia Child. I had recently been reacquainted with Julia Child when my husband became very interested in French cooking. I bought him a copy of both books by Julia, Mastering the Art of French Cooking and MTAOFC II. He made Demi Glace for three days and was rewarded with a jar of beef heaven :) While in the bookstore I noticed a book I had wanted to buy about 6 months earlier and just didn't. It was 'The Omnivore's Dilemma' by Michael Pollen. So that went into the shopping bag as well.

To make a long story short, reading Julie and Julia lead me to My Life in France which lead me to The Omnivore's Dilemma. I liked the first few chapters so much I told my husband about them and he took the book over. I of course finished the book as soon as he was done. All I can say is if you have not read the book, go buy it now. Since then we have read several food related and food industry related books. We have watched several food industry related movies and still are reading more!

The last book I read was Barbara Kingsolver's, 'Animal, Vegetable and Miracle' and at the same time started watching the 100 Mile Challenge on TV. So that is how I got here, 60 Days eating local Finger Lakes Region NY food.

I have a slight starting advantage. We do raise chickens, eggs, beef, and turkeys! Plus I did freeze quite a few vegetables out of our garden over the summer. Big Bonus, we always make some homemade wine each fall too!

So enough of this post....let's get started :)

Eating Local for 60 Days-Starting Date January 1, 2010

On January 1, 2010 I decided to go on a 60 day learning adventure, to see if I could eat local foods in most likely the worst time of year to try. I am not going to be quite as religious as some locavores, but will do my best. I am letting myself have coffee, salt, pepper, and certain spices. I might add to the list, but for now just those four.