As a chef I aspire to provide wholesome meals. Homespun has become one of my outlets to do so...from the food that we source, to the preparation and techniques used. I try to bring the meal to life, while ensuring each guests leaves full and nourished.
For our Ode to Autumn dinner held in late September I had challenged myself to follow the Whole30 program while preparing the meal. I enjoyed having set parameters, and allowing the season’s availability to direct my focus. I found that in these guidelines my creativity was stretched in new ways. The menu was as follows:
BEET + ARUGULA SALAD Moonglow Pears, Golden Pickled Beets, Toasted Pecans with Onion-Pear Vinaigrette
PEPPERCORN CRUSTED PORK LOIN Sweet Potato Puree, Roasted Onions + Kale
BRAISED CABBAGE, AFRICAN BUTTERNUT SQUASH + GALA APPLES with Fresh Basil
FARM-FRESH BRAISED GREENS with Pickled Swiss Chard + Roasted Garlic
ROASTED CARROTS, GREEN BEANS, QUEEN SCARLET TURNIPS + SHIITAKE
The menu was full of healthy goodness sourced from our local markets. Also I had the privilege to cook for one the farmers from whom I sourced shiitake mushrooms. Jonathan and his family run Abundant Harvest, and provide delectable produce at several markets around metro Atlanta. He is also one of my go-to farmers we use for our meals.
One of the benefits of cooking straightforward with local produce is the flavor. Using fresh, locally grown food gives me the peace of mind and confidence while preparing meals for the guest around the table. For one, I know how fresh it is. Second of all, I know where and whom I am getting it from. The meal was organic, gluten-free, dairy-free, and delicious. Yes, you heard me correctly...even the guest assured me that everything tasted great.
Cooking and eating clean may take a bit more effort. After experiencing it, we quickly grow to appreciate going back to its humble beginnings.
LOCALLY SOURCED Morningside Market: Woodland Gardens, Crystal Organic Farm, D+ A Farm, Cimino Farm Peachtree Road Farmers Market: Abundant Harvest Niman Ranch