Monday, May 3, 2010

Farm Fresh

Friday was sewing group at my house.  Unfortunately for the dresses that were our project du jour, sewing group was attended by ladies who love old junk as much as I do, and we spent the ENTIRE two hours going through my house while I named off which thift store every single item came from.  Then we went out to see the garden and...well, you know how it goes.  I did show them (real quick) how to apply bias tape. There are a lot of ways to do it, but  I love this tutorial if you don't know how already. 
My friend Lacey is an Urban Homesteader (and fellow lover(and seller) of all things old).  She lives on a half-acre of land not too far from me, and inside the city limits.  She grows her own food.  She keeps her own bees.  And she has a big ol' flock of Urban Chickens.  (Side note: are Urban Chickens big where you live?  They are HUGE here.  I bet I know a dozen people just off the top of my head who keep them.  When we no longer have dogs and my kids are more self-sufficient, maybe I, too, will keep Urban Chickens.)

Before Lacey came over, Adam and I were talking about her chickens.

Me: Man, I wonder if Lacey has any extra eggs.  I really want some really fresh eggs.
Adam: Why don't you call her and see.
Me: If I don't get some really fresh eggs from her, then I have to go to the co-op with the kids, and you know I'm really embarassed to go there since Grady peed all over the floor next to the cash register...
Adam: Why don't you call her?
Me:.. two times.  It happened two times.  So I can't go to the co-op and get eggs.  And the eggs at the store just aren't fresh enough.  You know what Julia Child says...
Me: you should always use the freshest possible ingredients.  I know.  I read about it in My Life in France.  Here, see, right here on page 37.  And did I tell you I found a video on Youtube that shows her teaching you how to flip an omelet?  And she says you're supposed to practice it using dry beans in a skillet.  She was teaching somebody to do it on Good Morning America. 
Adam: (exasperated sound, followed by the sound of the back door slamming.)
Me: Charles Kuralt.  Right?  No, Charlie Gibson. Yeah.  And he wasn't very good at it.  So if Lacey brings me some eggs then I can practice and we can have omelets just like Julia Child.  Does that sound OK honey?  Honey? Honey?

At which point I realize I am alone in the kitchen.  I watch the Youtube video again, and practice my dry bean shuffling while waiting for sewing group to start.

Luckily Lacey brought me some eggs, even though I was too busy jerking beans around a skillet to call her.

Which is to say that a) I am married to a saintly, saintly man, b) I might have a teeny, tiny obsessive compulsive disorder and c) I am on a Quest for the Holy Grail.  Of Breakfast.

image via flickr

When I become interested in something, I become interested in it. Some past examples:  I became interested in growing flowers.  Suddenly I found myself the posessor of a rotary tiller, 1,200 pounds of composted cow manure and 150 species of plants. 
I became interested in sewing pants for my children.  Suddenly I found myself the designer of a line of children's clothing producing 4 collections a year.

Of late, I have become interested in eggs. 
You can see where this is going.

About a month ago, some friends had us over for brunch.  They mentioned that they were reading My Life in France for book club, and they wanted to scramble some eggs as described in the book.  Had they not pointed out this half-page description to me, I probably would have glossed right over it when I took the book home to read.  And, subsequently, I would not have become interested in eggs, and, subsequent to that, my family would not have consumed so many eggs that I suspect that if I were to check closely behind their ears I would find that they are growing pinfeathers. 

I like to know when I do something that I am Doing It Right.  And after the revelation brought about by this 150 word blip in a book, I realized that when I scrambled our Saturday morning eggs, I was not Doing It Right.  At all.  This has caused much consternation, gnashing of teeth and crushing of egg shells. 

I have come to know a few things.  First-- scrambled eggs should take much, much longer than you would think they should to cook.  Also, scrambling eggs is some of the hardest cooking (to do properly) that I've ever done.  Even if you have a God-given talent for making egg-based things like custards, which I do. (And I don't think it's bragging for me to say that.  And neither would you if I had you over for Creme Brulee.) 
And finally, making The Perfect Scrambled Egg for your three year old only to have him request that it be doused in Heinz Ketsup hurts.  It really does.

And yet, I manage to carry on.  All dozen of those eggs Lacey brought-- scrambled.  Perfectly, I might add.  They were delicious.


Gremlina said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gremlina said...

this is an adorable post. I'm thrilled to have read your mind, avoided a co-op catastrophy & contributed to a delightful experiment!

Karin (the Mrs.) said...

Great post. And I recognize your tendency to DO something when you want to do something *grin* Those scrambled eggs sound delicious. I love those, but somehow never really got into learning how to make them the perfect way. I might now though. You inspired me :-)

Joy said...

I have to say that I love that last photo. I'm also curious to read the book now since we are big farm fresh egg eaters as well. (We usually buy from Petersen at the Sandy Ridge Market.)

Anonymous said...

Oh, that is so funny. I love the convo with Adam. I can totally hear it, with your voice too!

David makes some fantastic scrambled eggs. I wonder if he's doing it Right. Hmmm. I just toast the English Muffins. :)

Oh, and make the cheesecake. I can make a mean cheesecake.

Anonymous said...

OK! Now, I want to learn how to make perfect scambled eggs! And pillow cases dresses (one day)!
PS. You are too funny Melissa! And thanks for the tour of the house. I loved it!