My neighbour down the road opened a little tienda this week. In her shop, she is focusing on providing fresh, organic and locally grown produce and other items. Her goal is to help the locals understand how they can eat healthier by expanding their repertoire of recipes and creating things that are delicious from the items that are cheap and plentiful in the area.
On Thursday, she did a ‘soft launch’ of a food basket service with a group of about eight people who both she and I found. For $20.00 the customer got a bag of about 12 curated, seasonal items grown in the district. When I went to get my bag
When I went to get my bag, I recognized many of the items. There were others whose names I knew, but I had never used, and still others that I had never seen before. Before I left the shop, I asked my friend, who is an excellent and imaginative cook, how to use some of the unfamiliar items. Armed with my new-found knowledge I was determined that all the food would be put to use.
One of the things that I didn’t know how to use was some little green plums. My friend told me that they were good to put into beans, lentils or to use with meat as they were quite acidic. Friday morning I got busy trying to figure out what to do with them.
I had left them out on the counter overnight, and some of them had begun to soften and sweeten. I set to work making a sauce using the plums, the Miel de Cañas (molasses) and some of the other food.
And this was our Friday dinner, served with a big salad made from many of the other products in the bag.
It was my first time cooking yucca at home. One of my friends warned me that it should be boiled very well as it is tough. I found out it is, and it took quite a while to soften it. Once it was parboiled, we seasoned it with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder and a little parmesan. Then, we baked it on the barbeque. It turned out delicious.
I’ve learned to do many things over the last four years that I never considered, like using what I have on hand and creating dishes from scratch and trying not to waste food. It was always so convenient to hop over to the grocery store for a needed item. Now, I open the fridge, see what we have and just go with the flow at dinnertime…in the campo.
To see other interpretations of this week’s WordPress photo challenge ‘Dinnertime’ go here.