Grit Blogs > One Foot in the City

My Meat and Potatoes Legacy

When it came to food, my father was a pain in the butt.  A Kansas farmer of German descent, he was a big man, did big work, and burned a ton of calories.  At our farm house, we ate meat, potatoes and a vegetable topped off by a good desert – usually a cobbler.  Variety, however, was not his thing.

lettuce We did not eat salads as most know them – strike any image you have of salad.  We had fresh green leaf lettuce doused with a special home dressing or lambs quarters doused with oil and vinegar.  I didn’t see head lettuce until I was in high school.  I was probably in college before I found fresh spinach.  We ate it from a can. In the summer, we simply ate fresh tomatoes, peeled and sliced into great thick slabs. 

My squashI think I carry on his prejudices.  Although I have learned to love zucchini and yellow squash, my squash of choice is “patty pan.”  When I was told this year that we weren’t going to get them at the farmers market, I was gravely disappointed. 

“What are these little yellow and green things?” I asked of the imitations of patty pans.  

Reluctantly, I took them home and found them disgustingly – well, delicious.

Most of my garden was a bust, but I did salvage the beets.  Tonight I had a bowl that somehow became “diced” beets.  What!!! Not in my family.  We only slice them.  Funny, they were delicious.

I think I may get adventurous at the farmer’s market tomorrow morning.  A good friend asked me yesterday if I knew what those funny knobby green things that looked like a big white radish were.  Yep, I think they are kohlrabi.  Haven’t had one for a while and this may be a good week.

When you have a great market, you have good eats.  I hope you’re enjoying the same.