Friday, December 24, 2010

Cooking Floyd: Merry Christmas Everyone!

It's the day before Christmas and I'm contemplating our Christmas Feast menu.  A relish tray, green salad with vinaigrette, mashed parsnips, buttered green beans, baked sweet potatoes, scalloped corn, cranberry relish, turkey and stuffing, pears poached with white wine and spices, cherries in port, and vanilla pudding.

From our pantry will come the relish tray of Dilly Beans, Bread & Butter Pickles, Sweet & Spicy Zavory and Mini-Bell Peppers stuffed with Smoked Trout Spread (the smoked trout came from Big Pine Trout Farm), Pickled Beets, and Roasted Herbed Principe Borghese Tomatoes, all preserves put up last summer.  We still have some greens out in the garden under plastic for the salad.  I'll pull green beans, herbed butter, corn (given to us by a farmer after a restaurant refused the delivery as "too ripe".  Trust me, it was at the peak of perfection.) and sage pesto (for rubbing on the turkey) from the freezer.  Japanese sweet potatoes, onions, celeriac, carrots, shallots, and parsnips from the "root cellar".  Dried cranberries and Clementine segments will come off the pantry shelf to be tossed with maple syrup from Rexrode Maple Sugar Orchard, pecans from my son James' yard and a splash of Horton Vineyards' Cranberry Wine.  I have two loaves of whole wheat No-Knead bread cubed and drying out on the counter.  The flour was milled locally but I'm not sure where they source their wheat from.  That will be mixed for stuffing with our herbs, celeriac, onions, pecans, and cherries purchased from the Good Food-Good People stand at the Floyd Farmers Market and dried.  The pears are Seckels, put up last winter with Sweet Mountain Laurel wine from Chateau Morrisette and the vanilla pudding will be made with milk and cream from Homestead Creamery in Wirtz, VA.  The cherries in the port were part of the above cherry purchase.

The ingredients in our dinner not grown ourselves or sourced locally seem to be white sugar, salt and pepper, some of the tropical spices, yeast (I'm terrible at sourdoughs), oil, oranges and cranberries and, of course, the turkey.  Local heritage turkeys are available but I just couldn't afford to splurge on one.  Perhaps we'll grow our own next year.  Oh, and the port.  It's a berry and maple syrup port that was made at a family vineyard near Quebec City and purchased while we were vacationing there.  They didn't speak a word of English and we speak no French but we had a great time tasting and communicating by other means.  I will miss that port when it's only a memory.

Not too bad!

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