Monday, June 21, 2010

Last Day of Spring Feast

June 20

Craig and I have been craving lamb, perhaps an ancient craving, in our dna, since lamb has been a part of nearly every Spring Feast food tradition the world over, through the ages. Northland Sheep Dairy in nearby Marathon, NY has beautiful lamb. Actually they have beautiful products from all parts of the lamb to sheep life cycle: sumptuous sheepskins; earthy, soft yarn; aromatic, finely textured cheese; and meat in sensible, refined cuts. One hundred percent grass fed and sustainable farm practices. It seems that nothing is wasted and the animals are fully appreciated.

And, like every food writer before and after me will proclaim, you can taste the difference! Maybe that is why the food movement and what it could mean for environmental evolution holds such promise: the rewards are physically pleasing and immediately obvious. Simply put, this lamb tastes like an animal that lived a life of movement, fresh air and seasons, and ate what it should.

On the last day of spring, June 20, we got to our spring feast. The day was warm, everything green and bursting with life, with a cool breeze coming off the lake. We grilled lamb chops over a hardwood fire. Craig made flageolet beans from David Tanis's "a platter of figs and other recipes." A green salad of Romaine and Oak Leaf lettuces. Bowls of radishes and tiny, new carrots. The fire was going so nicely we rummaged around for more to grill: a single andouille sausage from the Piggery, and a stack of sliced peasant bread. Il Buco olive oil and salt over the grilled, smokey bread.

For the kids, a cold pitcher of water infused with fresh, crushed cherries, thyme, mint and lavender, and for us, a bright, soft red wine. We raised our glasses to Father's Day, to this glorious spring of flowers, baby birds and fruit, to each other, and to our family and friends, always in our hearts. Happy Summer Solstice.

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