Local just tastes better!

Last week I challenged my family to a new grocery challenge. We took our entire food budget for the week to market and bought what we could (and did some bartering as well, my favorite perk of being a vendor!). We've supplemented most meals since Saturday with items from market but tonight's dinner was completely made with local food.

But before I get into the meal I'd like to share a bit about market. If you are a beginner the most important thing I can tell you about any market is to get there early. At Franklin we cannot sell until the 8am bell has been rung. So get to market a few minutes prior and browse the tables to check quantity, quality and pricing. Then when selling begins hit those tables quickly as prized produce (such as strawberries, heirloom tomatoes, etc.) go fast! One important fact about the Franklin Market is that everything you see there has been grown by or made by the vendor selling it to you! We all take pride in what we do and love questions! While you are online check out the brand new Franklin Farmer's Market website HERE

Here is what we were able to get last Saturday. Most items were purchased but some were bartered:
Boursin Cheese Spread ~ Maria's to Go
Eggs ~ Noble Springs Dairy
Salted Butter ~ West Wind Farm
Beef ~ Triple L Ranch
Pomegranate Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing ~ Lucy's Kitchen
Agave Chocolate Cake Muffins ~ Lucy's Kitchen
Mixed Salad Greens ~ Norton Family Farm
Flaxseed Bread ~ Heartland Bakery
Heirloom Tomatoes ~ Vanderzon Family
Broccoli, Carrots, Red Potatoes, Cucumbers, Radishes ~ several other farmers

This evening I prepared a cut of meat that the sweet lady at the Triple L Ranch booth suggested. I was on a budget and she definitely gave me some great advice! Unfortunately I do not remember the cut of meat but it resembled a cube steak type cut but WAY BETTER than the cube steak you see in a grocery store. She told me to lightly flour it, brown it and how she made her gravy. When she said gravy I knew right away my husband would be happy. So here is what I made tonight, our first ALL LOCAL meal!

Rinsed and patted dry the cuts of meat. I lightly breaded them with whole wheat flour and browned both sides on med heat in coconut oil (unflavored/steamed kind, we use virgin oil for everything else). Once browned I added a 1/4 cup of water, covered the pan and let it simmer for about 15 minutes. Removed the meat and made the gravy by adding organic milk, sea salt, black pepper and onion powder.
After it had thickened I added back the meat and warmed it through. What I didn't mention above is that during the time the meat was simmering I washed my veggies and put the redskins on to boil.

While everything was working away on the stove top I prepped the veggies for the salad. Everyone pitched in with setting the table and getting food plated. Everything in this meal was from market, including the amazing salad dressing. "Country Fried Steak" with gravy, sliced Heirloom tomatoes, smashed Redskins topped with Boursin Cheese and chives from our own herb garden, mixed greens with veggies topped with the Vinaigrette. I skipped the bread but some had bread with the fabulous West Wind butter.

This weekend get up a little early and take the morning to yourself or bring the whole family to your local Farmer's Market. Eat healthy while supporting your local farmers, bakers and community!

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