Well, the Farm tour was fun, although the weather was miserable and the sheep were utterly uncooperative. They had gotten through a gate left open onto an adjacent farm and were as far as they could get from the house. The cattle, meanwhile, had rummaged through the barn spreading runny spring grass cow poo everywhere and knocking things about- posts, mineral feeders, gates. And there was a miserable drizzle falling the whole time.
Yet we had a good time. The pit roasted lamb was a true treat, the man scored a new cheese from Liquor Barn- a sheep's milk cheese rolled in rosemary, made by the SOAD cooperative in Spain- Jay Denham of Park Place and Browning's in Louisville brought some lambcetta and some lamb prosciutto he had cured.
Turns out, Matt doesn't wear a ring, but he is spoken for. They have set a date for September. Congratulations!
I heard back about the cooking class- it's a go, and the date can be adjusted back to November. So I'll post the specific dates as soon as they are set.
Still haven't thought of what else it was I wanted to share, and I will be consumed from now til Tuesday morning with the Farm Tour we're having Monday afternoon. I'll tell you all about it Tuesday...
Well, I am really tired but it has been a great couple of days. Wednesday I made all my regular lamb deliveries then headed over to Berries on Bryan, the CSA I am getting a garden basket. A CSA is where you pay a guy (who's actually good at gardening and has neither large dogs nor small children) upfront then show up once a week to collect a basket of whatever's ripe. Erik Wallese, who runs it along with his wife and two sons, thought some of the other members might be interested in getting lamb from me so I made a dish and went over for basket pickup.
Most people seemed to like what I made (Mediterranean Braised Lamb, the recipe's on my website) and were interested to hear about the sheep. I had almost forgotten that I originally got into this because I enjoyed eating, and cooking, and talking to other people about eating and cooking! So I didn't get in until late, then I had to make the two dishes I handed out for people to sample at the Good Foods Coop today.
I made the Mediterranean Lamb again, and I made Sam's Magic Meatballs (also on my website). I started out at 10:30 AM with 180 meatballs and had five left when I packed it in about 6:30. Granted, some people took more than one, but still...Whew! It was nice though, I met a lot of people who had never tried lamb before- and they all liked it. I had one astounded parent witness her toddler unhesitatingly down three meatballs in a row, then reach for the Mediterranean Lamb; apparently it was the first time the little girl had ever accepted anything that had meat in it. I have found kids really like lamb, even the picky ones. Like Grant, Erik's son, who will very deliberately tell you that turkey, one other thing I can't remember and 'that meat you have' are the only meats he likes.
Three people who had previously had lamb and not liked it, tried mine and were pleasantly surprised! The difference may have been that what they had before was either grain-fed, or a wool breed, or both. Genetics and feeding both influence the ratios of the different fatty acids a ruminant produces, which can have a profound effect on the flavor of the meat. And the lamb flew out of the meat case! Every time I looked around the lamb section was all shuffled through and bare looking.
Drug myself to the computer to check email. Looks like I maybe teaching a class in lamb cookery at Temple Adath Israel Mini-U this fall. Kudos to Ken Slepyan for wrangling it! This is I think the second year where the Temple has facilitated members of the community coming in to teach short courses, one or two hours, one night a week for a month, on whatever they know: flower arranging, healthcare ethics, lamb coookery.
I have found, like today, once people try it they really like lamb and incorporate it into their regular diet. Since this makes them, as well as my bottom line, healthier I thought the Mini-U was a great opportunity to get a few more people familiar with lamb. I'll keep you posted on that. I'm afraid it may be normally held in September and Ocotber- which is when I'm lambing this fall so it would be out of the question!
So I am very tired tonight, too tired to remember something unhappy I was going to tell you all about. Nobody died, nothing like that. Maybe I'll think of it and fire off a quick missive in the morning...