Saturday, May 26, 2012

Recipe: Rhubarb Jonnycake

Photo: Mary Nelen©
johnnycake at the ready

2 cups sliced rhubarb, trimmed and cut in 1" pieces
1 cup strawberries, stem removed and halved
3 tablespoons honey dissolved in 1/2 C water
1 cup corn ground fine
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick of unsalted butter 
2 local eggs  
2 tablespoons whole milk yogurt
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. and butter the inside of a small to medium cake pan.
Toss the sliced rhubarb and strawberries with honey. Set aside. In another bowl, whisk together the corn flour, baking powder, and salt.  

In a separate bowl, beat in the eggs and yogurt until mixed.
Add the dry to the wet mixture and stir just enough to combine. Add fruit and blend. Pour the batter into the cake pan. Sprinkle the top with pieces of butter.
Bake for 45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Slice and serve. Goes great with heavy cream, yogurt or ice cream.


  • Rhubarb - Homesteader in Hatfield
  • Corn Flour – Pioneer Valley Heritage Grain CSA
  • Butter – Cabot
  • Eggs – Woman from Chicopee
  • Yogurt - Sidehill in Ashfield
  • Honey - Pine Hill Orchard, Colrain

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Wade's Tomatoes.....

Monday, May 14, 2012

RECIPE: Hadley Grass Fritatta

Photo: Mary Nelen©
Asparagus Frittata Locavore

1 T butter
6 local eggs
1/2 C whole milk 
1/4 C cream
1/2 bunch local asparagus, blunt ends trimmed
1/2 C crusty whole wheat bread cut into small cubes
Slice aged goat cheese and 3 asparagus spears for garnish

Preheat oven to 375. Line the inside of an oven proof, 1 quart baking dish with butter. Bring large pot of salted water to boil. Put in asparagus and cook about 5 minutes until bright green and still firm. Place in bowl of ice to cook and stop cooking. Put three stalks aside for garnish. Cut asparagus spears in 1/2 inch pieces leaving tips in tact.  In large bowl, beat eggs with whisk and add milk and cream. Pour into baking dish. Add salt and pepper. Blend in asparagus pieces and bread. Cook for 25 minutes or until the  center is firm. When frittata is out of the oven, garnish with a generous slice of goat cheese. Place three asparagus spears placed in the center. Serve warm with a grassy white wine.

RECIPE: Hadley Grass, Farro & Bacon

Art: Mary Nelen©
Recipe in the New York Times for a Farro Pasta with Nettles and Sausage recipe made me wonder and then begin to substitute. First of all, nettles, are very hard to find, even if you are a locavore. Pasta is diablo (process white flour - no fiber, few nutrients) and whole grain Jesus. This recipe below substitutes nettles with asparagus (Hadley Grass), farro for farro grain for farro pasta and bacon for sausage. (I didn't have sausage. Both sausage and bacon are local.) There was no refined flour in the fertile crescent. Camels, mirages and miracles but no white flour. Instead there was farro, an ancient grain that is on the list of offerings on my grain share.This version of the dish uses farro grain rather than pasta meaning that the white flour is left out.

Farro, Bacon and Asparagus Salad 

6 strips bacon (local from Chestnut Farm or Wells Tavern)
1C farro (local from the Pioneer Valley Grain people)
1/2 C celery, chopped fine
1 C onion, sliced fine
1T red pepper flakes 
10 spears asparagus, tips intact, cut into 1” pieces (see map)
rhubarb jucice (from stewed rhubarb sweetened with honey)
peppercorn juice (peppercorns in jar with vinegar)

Brown farro for 3 minutes, add 1-3/4 water and pinch salt
Cook for 20 to 30 minutes on simmer and remove from heat to cool.
Fry bacon slowly, remove grease, when cooked, transfer to drain on paper bag.
Sautee red pepper flakes in bacon fat for one to two minutes then add asparagus, celery and onion.
Cook vegetables for 15 minutes on low.
When farro is finished, drain and return to pan. When it has cooled, add the vegetable mixture and bacon. By now the onions should be nicely carmelized

Top with grated cheese, if desired and serve in large warm bowls.