Little Farm Cooking

We here at the little farm strive to eat sustainable. We grow our own produce on our little lot. We buy local from the source or at farmer's markets. We make our food from scratch including breads and crackers. These pages will be a record of our journey. I hope you will visit often and take away what information you need. Happy Cooking!

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Sharing The Food Forward


My son and his wife just had a little one and with three other little ones, I thought it would be a good thing to take them dinner once a week.  So many people helped me in this area when I was a single mom with no money and two little boys to feed.  Figured it was about time for me to pay it forward.  The reason I take it over there rather than have them come here...packing all the stuff for the baby and loading three little ones in car seats takes a while to get done so it is easier on them if I just take everything to them.  I plan on doing some frozen meals for them also when I get a spare weekend.

                                                          Brownies
The desert was brownies with a chocolate glaze on top with pecans.  These brownies are made from a mix  that I make a large batch of for a quick brownie.  So much better than a boxed mix that has things in it that no one really knows what they are unless you are a scientist.  The mix came from this book
Just add eggs, oil, vanilla and nuts to it.  If you do large batches of the mix you will always have something on hand to make up something sweet.  I put chocolate chips on the top put in the still warm oven to melt a little, then spread out the chocolate and sprinkle chopped nuts on top.
I have a very small kitchen but I do prefer to have all the ingredients ready to go and put them away as I use them


And there we have easy peezy dessert. 


                                                           Chicken Pot Pie                                    
I love chicken pot pie!  It is just one of those comfort foods that makes you feel good.  You could actually make up a larger batch of the filling and freeze and all you would have to do is make your dough or if you are not up to making dough use a commercial dough.

If you want to start with a fresh  chicken just combine the chicken with a few carrots, some celery and simmer for about 45 minutes.  Reserve the broth.  Then strip a way the meat and set aside.  We already had smoked turkey in the freezer so I used that along with home made chicken broth.  By the way save the bones to make more broth! 

At this point if you are making a refrigerator dough, you should prepare it now so it will be ready.

Dice one large onion and thinly slice 3 carrots and 3 celery stalks on the diagonal.     Preheat your oven to 400.  In a large skillet add 1 stick of butter (remember this is a comfort food :-) .  Melt the butter and add the onions, carrots, and celery.  Add 1/2 cup flour to the veggies and cook stirring one minutes. 
                                                        

Whisk in 2 1/2 cups broth and then whisk in 1 1/2 cups milk and simmer for 10 minutes stirring often.  Hint: The longer you stir it the thicker it will get.  Next stir in what ever other veggies you like, about 3/4 - 1 cup.  I like peas and corn in mine and what ever other veggie is lurking around that looks like it would be good in the pie.
                                                           

 Season with whatever you like..parsley always give it a bright taste.  You could stir in a little sherry for a little different taste and I like it but did not have any on hand.  Place the filling in a casserole or individual ramekins.  Roll out your dough and place on top of casserole and use the tines of the fork to press the dough against the edge of the casserole and put a couple of slits in the dough.  Brush with egg wash and bake for about 25 minutes.
                              
And there you have it! 
                                                 Next week slow cooker Cajun black beans and crab Rangoon. 

Sunday, January 25, 2015

USING WHAT WE HAVE IN THE FREEZER AND PANTRY WEEK

So here I go with a new cooking blog.  I hope you will stick with me as I develop this blog.  Much design still needs to be done and skill at blogging needs to be attained .  I have never done a cooking blog before but I decided to just jump in feet first. So here goes.

Right now in the little farm kitchen, I am trying to just use what we have with some supplements from the farmer's market.  This week was focused on using up the food in the freezer as I have a new plan for it.  More of that in a future blog.

We were away part of this week so there are only three recipes to post.  The first day I pulled out a little package of shrimp left over from a previous dish.  We picked the shrimp up fresh in Half Moon Bay and I froze what we didn't use.   The last three things I pulled out were some leftover cooked salmon, also from Half Moon Bay, frozen mustard greens also from our garden, and udon noodles.  And the recipe I came up with was this

                                               Udon Noodle Soup With Salmon, Shrimp and Greens
I started out my soaking some dried mushrooms we had in the pantry.I used 4 cups of dashi broth (Made from seaweed.  Very easy to make)  and 4 cups homemade chicken broth.  Then stirred in some miso paste, from the Asian supermarket, about 2 tablespoons. Just add to taste.  I let that cook for about 5 minutes then slowly poured in 3 tablespoons soy sauce and about 2 tablespoons of  mirin.  I let that simmer for a while.  Meanwhile I brought another pot of water to a boil to cook the udon (cook about 3-5 minutes after the water boils).  After the broth had simmered for a while, I added the salmon, the shrimp and simmered a little longer.  Next I added the greens and mushrooms plus some tofu cubes and simmered about 5 more minutes.  When all is done just put some noodles in bowls and ladle the soup over them.  There you have it!

            Sausage and Brown Rice with Garden Frozen Peppers and Farmer's Market Onions

I never seem to grow enough onions so toward the end, before the new crop comes in, I have to supplement with farmer's market onions.  This was a simple dish.  Just cook up the rice.  I happened to love my rice cooker but use what ever method you like.  Slice the sausage into rounds, chop the onions and the peppers and saut√© together.  Put some of the cooked rice in bowls and spoon the saut√© over it.  Top with hot sauce or whatever you like.

                                                                     Stir Fry
The last meal was just using left overs.  Had some rice and tofu leftover so just did a stir fry with whatever veggies I had in the fridge.

There you have it.   I promise to take picture for the next weeks menu.  Things were a little hectic this week.    The only thing I know for sure I will be making is turkey pot pie to take to my son's house on Wednesday.  Have not done the menu for next week this evening yet.  I hope one or all of these recipes will give you some jumping off points for your own kitchen.  Happy cooking!