Saturday, November 29, 2014

Eating Omily: There's Always More to be Thankful For!

Thanksgiving happened already!!! Did you get to feast on your favorites? Do you go uber traditional? Give those beloved dishes a twist? Or throw the turkey and cranberries out the window in favor of more exotic fair?

Either way, the Farmers' Market can stock your Thanksgiving table from cocktail hour, to second piece of pie!

Speaking of which, I just bought a bottle of vodka at the Farmers' Market! How's that for a win?? Distilled from sugar beets, this booze retains a hint of that earthy veg, making it delicate and delicious all by itself over ice. Even if you wrinkle your nose at the smell of vodka, trust me: try this one! I've never enjoyed vodka! It's my least favorite spirit even in a mixed drink, but this stuff is good! Orange Country Distillery also has a white un-aged whiskey, and a bourbon is on its way! It'll be ready in time for the holidays, and you'd better believe a bottle will be under my Christmas tree! Mmmm...bourbon...every ingredient is grown on their own farm, and every step of the distillation process is done by hand for a truly crafted, and love-infused product.

The weather in NYC has taken a turn: it's been raining and sleeting all day! If you're worried about staying warm on your way to your holiday
destinations, you can look no further than...you guessed it!! Alpaca wool mittens, gloves, hats, headbands, tote bags, and insoles to keep your tootsies toasty, are all available at Union Square Farmers' Market!

If you don't think you can make yourself shop out in the open once Winter weather descends, don't forget you can always warm up mid-shop with a hot apple cider, or if you prefer, a creamy hot chocolate, made with grass-fed local milk! Yum!!

You can also add some nutrition to your table, and wow your family and friends with a veggie they've probably never seen before: kale sprouts! You buy these on a big stalk, just like Brussels sprouts, but they're little purple kales instead of cabbages! Amazing!! I couldn't resist picking up a bunch for myself. Don't forget: cole crops get sweeter and crisper after a frost! Pull on your new alpaca hat and get your hands on some super-food goodness!

So how about that dessert I promised you? Well, if you're in a hurry, you can grab a ready-made pie at Bread Alone, or brownies, tarts, cookies, and other treats at a variety of Farmers' Market vendors. If you're feeling more ambitious, and want to prove your pie skills, you'll definitely want to swing by Flying Pigs Farm. What are you doing at a pork stand looking for pie? Well, I heard it straight from Alton Brown himself: lard makes the best pie crust! Theirs is a blend of lard and butter of course, since butter gives such perfect pie flavor. With their ready-made pie crust in hand, you don't even have to be ambitious to make your own pie!

Ok, so it's too late to deck your Thanksgiving table with all this Farmers' Market goodness, but those leftovers can't last forever, and the cold weather is here to stay! It's easier than ever to buy local and support farmers working hard to hang on to a job that is so much more than a paycheck: it's a passion and a vocation, and it's up to all of us to keep this vocation alive on our land.

This Thanksgiving, I'm thankful for people who are actually interested in reading what I write...and I'm even more thankful for the people who take those small steps in the right direction, slowly aligning their lifestyle with their principles...or maybe just slowly learning and reprograming your principles! What YOU do, even if it's just buying an apple from a farmer on your way home, even if it's just thinking about this stuff, reading about it in other sources, talking to your friends about it, makes a difference! Put that energy out in the universe, and keep going!

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