Q. What's the quickest way to Shellac's heart? A. Starting a fire in a wood burning stove. That may not be true but that was the first place they went to upon entering the house at Wealth Underground Farm, Bob volunteering to stoke the fire and crank the heat emanating from the stove. And why not? It was a cool, overcast day in Oregon when Shellac and Helen Money pulled in to our driveway after the drive up from Eugene and disembarked from their Bandago sprinter van; next to the fire was the obvious place to be. After meeting Ram, our cat, and fighting the chill by the ire for a few minutes, we were ready to dig in to the food, which was set out on the kitchen counter.
We sat down at the table after serving ourselves the pickled green tomatoes, risotto a la milanese, steamed kale, and baked delicata squash. The risotto, adapted from the River Cottage Meat Book, was incredibly rich so I served the rest of the vegetables plain. That said, the squash was incredibly sweet and had the best reception from everybody sitting around the table.
During the conversation we discovered that bad pizza exists and is being proliferated in Southern Oregon, the joys of a wood burning stove are immense, rabbit hunger is a problem we should be aware of, and that Shellac are masters of French cooking terminology.
The crew was running short on time so we had a quick tour through the garden before they loaded up and headed to the Holocene. There are only a few weeks left of the CSA and the beds of vegetables are starting to become thin but we found a variety of foods to taste. The star, as always, was the husk cherry. The dominating thought was that the taste of the berry most closely resembled cheddar cheese. You'll have to try one at some point to see if you agree. We snapped a few pictures and then Shellac and Helen Money were off in order to set up and run sound check for a sold out show in Portland.