Look what I dug out of the home garden today!
I transplanted the smallest of the leeks to the home garden last season, when I moved the rest of the crop into a better bed. There’s maybe a dozen and a half or so, and they’ve only recently been visible now that the snow cover is receding.
Because they were planted so close to the foundation, I was able to sink a shovel in and retrieve some for tonight’s dinner, though at that point I didn’t know what dinner was going to be.
It only came to me late this afternoon, after a full day of errands and meetings and in between the afternoon dog park jaunt and another meeting. I’d put a cup of so of dried borlotto beans up to soak this morning, and because they were freshly dried, it only took a few hours to plump them up.
I pulled out my Dutch oven and tossed in a dollop of chicken fat I’d saved from a meal of one of Nate’s chickens last week, then coarsely chopped the leeks and threw them in, too. Out of the freezer came a small package of Dakota Harvest lamb sausage links for the pot.
Along with the leeks and sausages simmering in the chicken fat, I added a couple of crushed cloves of Patti Bancroft’s organic garlic. I also threw in a little crushed thyme leaf, some red pepper flakes, and a couple dollops of my homemade bouillon.
Then the beans went in, along with a quart jar of chicken stock (also from the aforementioned chicken dinner), plus another quart of water. I brought the whole thing up to a simmer and then put the lid on and tucked it in the oven at 300 degrees while I headed off to my meeting.
When I got back about an hour later, the beans were tender and the whole darn thing had come together brilliantly. I threw in about half a cup of red wine, simmered it on the stovetop just a few minutes longer, and served with crusty bread.
Local ingredients: chicken fat, chicken stock, lamb sausage, leeks, garlic, dried beans, red pepper, homemade bouillon.