Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Easy like Sunday morning...

So Saturday was pleasant and sunny and warm, the first non-rainy day for 20 days straight in Portland...

...so of course, as we lay in bed Sunday morning, we woke up to the heavy beat of rain on the skylights. Everything was soaked again. It's a good thing we got in our yard work and beach time when we did on Saturday.

Sunday morning we slogged out into the rain and mud for the first day of the Lents International Farmers' Market. The turnout wasn't great, but we made some purchases (mustard greens, a bundle of baby leeks, some radishes, asparagus for a high school wrestling team). Soaked and muddy, we changed back into our pajamas as soon as we got home, and lingered over the crossword together as we had breakfast.

We spent most of the day taking it easy, with the windows open so we could hear the rain, and I made raw ice cream, which was amazing. Raw milk, raw cream, our backyard eggs, real vanilla, those little fresh bananas, and the strawberries we'd picked on Sauvie Island the day before... it's a bit less creamy than I'd like, so next time I'll use less milk and more cream, but otherwise it was perfect. Tons of fruit flavor, not a lot of sugar, that sweet raw dairy, and all the good fats and nutrition intact! THAT is "guiltless ice cream," not that tasteless chemical crap they sell at the store. It's nice to indulge in a lovely dessert and not feel the least bit of worry over the consequences. Here's the recipe:


2 pints strawberries, washed, hulled, & halved
4 small bananas, mashed
3/4 cup sugar, divided
2 pastured eggs
2 c raw milk*
2 c raw cream
1 Tbsp vanilla

* In retrospect I would reduce this to 1 cup milk.

Mash the strawberries in a big mixing bowl, then stir in 1/4 cup sugar. Set aside and let it macerate for 30 minutes to an hour, so that the sugar dissolves and pulls all the juice out of the crushed berries. Stir in the bananas and mash it all up some more together. Set aside.

Beat the eggs in a separate bowl with a mixer, going on medium-low speed until the eggs foam up. Beat in the remaining 1/2 cup sugar, a little at a time, until it all thickens up. Mix in the remaining ingredients, then stir in the fruit and transfer it all to your ice cream freezer to let 'er rip. This makes about 2 quarts.

Anyway, Sunday night dinner was awesome too - did you know that you can stuff steak? I had a lovely flank steak, which I marinated in soy sauce and olive oil with a bit of molasses and garlic, and I cut a deep pocket into it while it marinated. I stuffed it with some barley that I cooked with sage and some other spices, as well as carrot and green onion, and then slow-roasted the whole shebang. It was perfect! We will definitely be doing barley-stuffed steak again. I served it with the asparagus we'd gotten at the farmers' market, steamed up with some lemon, and a nice red wine. Perfect for a rainy Sunday:

Yesterday was much less peaceful, got the house clean finally (the one thing I miss about apartment living is getting all the cleaning done in two hours) and got caught up on bills and all the mundane welcome-back-to-life stuff. And now, we're officially caught up and back home. We took a nice walk to His Bakery this morning and read the paper over breakfast (a lemon-ginger scone for him, a pecan cinnamon roll for me). Keith's been doing yard work, since it's mercifully not raining yet, though it looks like it wants to. I'm about to go munch on some leftover blackeyed peas and cornbread (which we had with mustard greens for dinner last night) and get some writing in. It's all so mundane but I love that it's all getting back to normal.

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