Sunday, November 15, 2009

One local dinner (week 1)

The 3rd Annual Dark Days Challenge begins today, and I celebrated by cooking an almost an entirely local dinner without even planning it! For those unfamiliar with the challenge, the goal is to eat one meal/week which is made up of only foods found locally. Easy in summer, tougher in winter. Many people preserve summer produce and then use their stored food to create their local meals. I am trying the challenge with the added twist that since we are about to move, I have already used up as much of my pantry and freezer stash as possible. There's still some local food in there, but not much, so I'll be sourcing my ingredients weekly. For my purposes, local means the state of Oregon. We'll see how it goes!

Since we are moving in two weeks, I’ll count my blessings and write up this evening’s dinner for my first post. If I don’t post next week, it’s because the contents of my kitchen are packed and we’re eating take-out. (Shhh! Don’t tell Laura!)

Anyway, I think I’ve posted this recipe before, but it’s become an old standby and it’s sure great on a night we need a quick dinner. I call my recipe “Egg Scramble,“ since I can’t stand Scrambled Eggs. Pretty funny, but this dish contains so much good stuff that I hardly notice the eggs.

I purchased everything but the cheese, salt & pepper at a local farmers’ market. The eggs were huge -- the egg lady said her hens lay really large eggs this time of year, when they aren’t on strike. I lucked out and the chickens were working. I used only three eggs for two adults and a preschooler, but if they had been normal size I would have used four. Here’s my recipe, which I created based on a meal at a local restaurant. I never make it the same way twice. Sorry, I forgot to take pictures.

Egg Scramble

1 medium potato, skin on, sliced very thin (any variety will work, but red is prettier)
1/2 large leek, both white & green parts, diced (you can substitute an onion, but I think the leek tastes better and besides, the green adds color)
1 bell pepper, diced (red or orange is pretty)
1 large clove garlic, minced or diced
2-3 strips bacon, diced (we used up the bacon from our pig long ago so I also bought this at the farmers‘ market)
3-4 eggs
1 cup grated cheddar cheese (I use local Tillamook)
Salt & pepper to taste

In a large frying pan, fry bacon. Remove & drain. In the same pan, fry potato slices in olive oil. When potato starts to soften, add leek. Add bell pepper. Add garlic. Add fried bacon. Crack eggs into a bowl and beat slightly. Add eggs to frypan and stir until they are cooked. Turn heat to low, top with grated cheese, and cover pan until cheese is melted. Salt & pepper to taste. Serves 2. Tastes best with a hot homemade blueberry muffin on the side.

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