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The Curious Gardener Article #1

Category: Presenting "The Curious Gardener"

In this issue:

  • Host A Farm-To-Table Thanksgiving
  • Discover the Legacy of the first World Trade Center

Host A Farm-To-Table Thanksgiving– We’ve all witnessed the growth in farmers markets, but the latest trend is indoor, year round farmers markets. When I heard this I decided to host my first farm-to-table Thanksgiving.  I located a website that tells me where the closest market is to me at this time of year.  Our Pawling Farmers Market is a summer-only open air market , but there is one two towns away that stays open through Thanksgiving.  Click here to go to the website I visited.

Blue Hill at Stone Barns, NY

Keep It Simple: Start A Tradition– If you’re buying your sweet potatoes, parsnip and orchard fruits at a farmers market, or harvesting them from your own garden, you don’t need fancy recipes to bring out their flavor. One chef I talked to said that Thanksgiving is not the time to go crazy with new recipes.  Just roast all your vegetables together in a little olive oil and sea salt and you have a very tasty seasonal dish.  I like the idea of creating one special dish using fresh ingredients that could become part of our Thanksgiving tradition for years to come.

Procuring the Turkey— Find a source for locally raised turkey through word of mouth or by researching on the internet. Then, the key is to find out how that turkey was raised. Here are the questions you want to ask: were the turkeys raised in confinement or outdoors in a pasture?  How much time do they spend outdoors? (some are let outside 10 minutes a day. That’s not enough). What do they eat and are they given antibiotics? Growth enhancers?  If necessary, speak with the farmer directly.

Leftovers— Blue Hill’s chef de cuisine, Trevor Kunk (shown right), makes tasty leftovers at home: “Turkey sandwiches with pickled red onions, roasted broccoli rabe, goat cheese, chopped capers, cornichons, herbs, lemon, poached breast and roasted thigh on focaccia”, he told an interviewer from Williams Sonoma last month.  Reading this, I almost want to skip the main meal and go right to the leftovers (To learn how to pickle, stay tuned to “The Curious Gardener”)

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