Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Chickenless Chick: Volunteer Farmer

The non-wussiest place that I get food is Green Flamingo Organics. In order to grow this parsley and many of my fridge's other contents, two chickenless ladies named Liz and Mary toil daily in the Florida sun, surrounded by Florida bugs, sacrificing Florida indoor plumbing, to achieve their dream of a sustainable farm life. As of a few weeks ago, so do I, as a volunteer; and I encourage every cook to seek out a similar experience. I could extoll the benefits of supporting local agriculture, but my husband talks many of your ears off about this on a daily basis. So here's a motive that has more to do with the theme of this blog: You'll develop a new appreciation for weird food. Allow me to demonstrate.

Do you know what this is?

It's Malabar spinach. That's right, spinach. I had no idea spinach grew on a vine like that. Now, when I got it home, I learned that this particular type releases a gelatin-textured substance into your mouth when you chew it. A few weeks ago, I would have been grossed out. But because I worked on this spinach myself, crushing the berries in my hands and scattering the seeds on the ground, I wanted to like it. I pictured how idyllic it was out there on the farm, how the landscape would have missed it if it were gone. So yesterday I brought home more. And if I don't like what I do with it this week, I'm going to bring home more still.

Palette-expanding, no? I'm rather proud.

I believe that creamed spinach or another more gelatin-textured dish may be in order. If you have any ideas, feel free to let me know. And be sure to visit Doveland Farm for more pics of Green Flamingo.

Beat the eggs. Whip the cream. Show no mercy.

No comments: