When my sister, mom, and I get together, look out! Let the adventure begin. We planned a treasure hunt and weiner roast for my nephews (7 and 4) and a Hundred Mile Dinner party. Tuesday night we’ll be talking about the book the female portion of this zany group read called The Storied Life of AJ Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin! Later still we’ll be trying our hand at making stepping stones. And last night we watched Woman in Gold with Helen Mirren. Despite the torrential rainstorm the night they arrived, the weather has been lovely; not too hot, not too cold, but just right.
But I really wanted to share the scoop on our Hundred Mile Dinner party, which was a success. Not that we didn’t learn a thing or two for next time, which is good because my sister-in-law has proclaimed it is now tradition. And not that we didn’t cheat, just the tiniest little bit. Particulary when it came to the booze.
We did some planning of what we wanted to eat (and what people would eat). We had an age range of four to seventy-seven and we wanted everyone to enjoy the experience. There is no use going to all the effort if no one is going to eat it!
The idea of a Hundred Mile Dinner is to use only ingredients produced or grown within a 100 mile radius. These means no salt, pepper, or sugar, and only locally ground flour. No vinegar. No to a lot of other things as well. But now that I have a better idea of what we can buy locally I’ve got some excellent ideas for the next one.
First off, a trip downtown to the Regina’s Farmers Market on Saturday morning with my Mom, my sister, and the Adorables. Defnitely within a hundred mile radius.
We already had potatoes, two types of lettuce, basil, dill, carrots, and nastrusms from my mom’s garden! So, it was stops for beets, more carrots, tarragon, more dill, and feta cheese. Wine, of course! Tomatoes, cucumbers, and honey. I managed to get a few other things that weren’t on the list. Then it was off to Butcher Boy Meats for the fresh fryer chickens.
We bought four 3+ pound fryers (from one of the Hutterite colonies found around Regina) but only roasted three. The product that saved us was the Three Farmers Camelina Oil. It is bottled in Saskatoon, which is a little further a field than 100 miles, but still Saskatchewan. After a sprinkling of tarragon, the chickens turned out great.
Next the veggies!
We roasted the beets with some camelina oil and then drizzled them with honey and sprinkled on a bit of feta cheese.
The salad consisted on two types of lettuce, tomatoes, basil leaves, feta cheese and tossed with camelina oil.
We boiled the carrots and potatoes. We splashed the potatoes with some cream and dill. We added a dish of cucumbers and a side of feta cheese. That was one of our cheats as I’m sure the cheese people didn’t find the salt in their backyard.
Dining al fresco! Wine from Living Sky Winery. Another area we cheated a bit, okay a lot, was the drinks. We thoroughly enjoyed the bottle of Apple wine from Living Sky Winery but at $25 a bottle it was a risk to buy three or four bottles of a wine we’d never tried before. Turns out it was delicious, especially if you don’t like super dry wine, which I don’t. But we served beer and other wine, plus ice tea for the kids. And all of those drinks, whether produced in Saskatchewan or not, contained ingredients not found in Saskatchewan.
Even the center piece contained nastrusms, carrot leaves, and dill from my mom’s garden! We used folding tables and hauled out all the dining chairs from inside the house. Spread out some tablecloths and with a mishmash of plates and glasses we dined out under a twilight sky that turned into a night illuminated by a blue moon.
I think it was right up there in my top favourite meals. A beautiful evening, comfort food, family, and conversation. What is one of your favourite food experiences?