Wednesday, September 2, 2009
Members to Enjoy Harvest Meal at Chert Hollow Farm
Slow Food Katy Trail invites you to explore a diversified Missouri organic farm through a special tour and dinner. Participants will tour the farm with the owners, learning about its integrated organic methods, then enjoy a light meal inspired by Southern cuisine and prepared primarily from ingredients grown and produced on-farm.
Eric and Joanna Reuter founded Chert Hollow Farm in 2006 as a diversified homestead farm raising fresh produce for market while feeding its owners year-round. The farm earned Organic Certification for produce in 2009. Eric and Joanna strive to live by the principles they market: a dedication to local foods through self-sufficiency and avoidance of processed foods. They are working to integrate vegetables, fruit, grains, livestock, poultry, dairy, and more into a self-sufficient farm that respects the traditions of their ancestors while making use of appropriate innovations. Maintenance of diversity is one of their basic principles of farming, as evidenced by their focus on heirloom vegetables and heritage breeds, including a number of Slow Food Ark of Taste varieties. They intend to earn a decent living while feeding themselves and visitors with the freshest and best food possible, sourced on-farm as most farms once did.
The proposed menu reflects a time when farms still supported themselves, and visitors could be assured that any food offered was sourced from the farm with pride. All but a few basic ingredients such as oil, vinegar, and spices will be harvested and/or produced on-farm for this meal, which will be prepared by Eric & Joanna. They chose a Southern theme this year to reflect Missouri’s heritage and as an American cuisine traditionally rooted in fresh ingredients and local flavors. Food will be served in a tasting format, one item at a time as it is prepared, to ensure that each is enjoyed fresh. This meal will be vegetarian-friendly, as meat on Chert Hollow Farm is seasonally available and butchering does not happen until later in the fall.
THE PROPOSED MENU
(Menu items subject to change based on availability.)
Our take on a classic bean dish prepared with heirloom cowpeas, onions, garlic, hot peppers, tomatoes, mixed greens, and more; topped with fresh cheese from the farm’s goats.
A simple tasting of heirloom dried beans, allowing their excellent flavor to be enjoyed.
Nothin’ but cornbread
Southern-style cornbread, using only fresh-ground farm-grown cornmeal, leaveners, farm-made yogurt, farm-fresh eggs, and salt. Served with Missouri honey, sorghum, or farm-made jams. Baked in cast-iron.
Mess of greens
Mix of collards, mustard, kale, beet, and more, sautéed with garlic and vinegar.
Fried green tomatoes and okra
Fresh heirloom green tomatoes and okra breaded with freshly ground farm-grown cornmeal and lightly pan-fried in a cast-iron skillet.
Mint iced tea
Freshly brewed iced tea made with three varieties of mint.
To be determined.
This event is a trial of a new initiative by Slow Food Katy Trail to help support membership for farmers who uphold the principles of Slow Food. The suggested $15 donation will pay for an annual membership for Chert Hollow Farm, and additional funds will go toward SFKT’s other work. 16 slots are available; contact Bernadette Dryden to reserve yours at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This event will be held Wednesday evening, September 16. The tour will start at 6 p.m., with the first food becoming available at 7 p.m. Please RSVP by Tuesday, September 8 . Beverages other than water and fresh tea will be on a BYOB basis. Chert Hollow Farm is located 12 miles/20 minutes north of Columbia, and carpooling is encouraged. Directions will be provided to confirmed attendees.