Friday, September 28, 2007

Have food, will travel

The food business is really exciting and ever full of surprises. Usually these are not pretty surprises, such as refrigerators "going down" or ovens not working, but in the case of catering, you are guaranteed surprises.

We had such a surprise last Sunday when delivering a "picnic" for a surprise birthday party. I knew that it was out a remote road, but didn't fully comprehend WHERE until we arrived. This was not a fully staffed event, rather one in which we dropped off hot food along with serving platters. Someone else had arranged for plates and silverware, thankfully!

We arrived out the remote road, twisting and turning until we arrived at a huge gate. We made the call to the person "inside" and then met her at the pond. I thought, lovely place for a picnic. NOOOOOOOO...that was just where the folks would first arrive for wine. Hm...I heard her saying something about the ATV...didn't pay much attention until she said that the last truck that tried to go up this road couldn't make it. That should have been a big clue.

Up the hill we climbed in our trusty 1964 Ford pickup...until it would climb no more. Farmer/Chef Jeff had to carry the food up the hill to the tree house. Did I mention that this was all to be delivered to a tree house??? As my honey put the truck in park, and put on the emergency brake, we realized that the old truck's brakes were not up to the task. I got to sit in the truck with my foot jammed on the brake while the food was unloaded and I PRAYED!!!

All the while I was sitting with my foot jammed on the brake, I tried to relax (but not too much!) and take in the view. It really was quite beautiful, but GOOD LORD!!! I took a few pictures, one of which was my foot on the brake...

It really was a beautiful setting, but I was not really able to fully enjoy it. Farmer/Chef Jeff took the camera to the top of the hill and snapped some shots of the view so I could see what was up there.

I didn't mention that while riding in the vintage Ford truck, the inside door handles fell off. Farmer Jeff has been after me to buy a truck for catering and I kept telling him no, up until I had to lean on the brake for dear life. When he got back into the truck and relieved me of my braking duties, I asked him if we could go look at trucks. My faithful little '97 Nissan Maxima has been traded in for a Chevy truck! Now we have a truck that we can rely upon. I can hardly wait to take the dogs for a ride in it!

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Cooking with Fire!

My sweet honey, Farmer Jeff, just loves fire. Not just any fire, but fire that can be harnessed to cook food. He built a great and impressive wood burning oven a couple of years ago. For the first year of its existence he cooked just about every meal, including breakfast, with a mighty fire in the oven.

During the summer friends of our were on vacation in Tennessee and called early one Sunday morning. They had made a great discovery of treasure. They had found a big, black iron cooking cauldron! They wanted to know if Farmer/Chef Jeff wanted it. Yes, of course, he did want it but how in the world would they get it here on the plane??? Turns out that family members were driving to CA and would bring it with them. YEAH!!! It has become an instant hit with him. So far he has done a test run and then an actual catering with it, cooking a magnificent Jambalaya with duck, house-made andouille sausage and gulf shrimp! YUM!!!

While Farmer Jeff was playing with his new toy, I was taking pictures of pears. I ended up picking them right after taking this picture. They are creamy bartlett pears. We have been so blessed with an abundance of tasty produce.

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Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Formerly Known as Hens

We are not having a lot of luck with buying baby chicks. For Mother's Day, Farmer Jeff bought 5 Ameraucana hens for me. They are the ones that lay the fabulous pale green eggs and are descendants of the Peruvian chickens, Araucanas.

Just a couple of days ago I was out in the pen when I heard an adolescent crowing. I looked at each and every chicken for the early signs of roosterhood when I caught both Duchess and Sophia belting out little, puny cockadoodle-doos.


We are probably going to end up selling the fellows and buying some more hens. Sigh...they are sure handsome but they just don't deliver those gorgeous green eggs!

You have to know with our love of pork...that we HAVE to have green eggs and ham! (sorry...just couldn't help it!)