Why I fell in love with Eric, seriously. Herb dressing recipe included.

This week at the market, Eric will have rhubarb, arugula, mixed greens, 3 types of radishes, 3 types of head lettuce, chicken feet, chicken and eggs! Ralston Creekside Speakeasy will be up and running. We will be changing the set up of our stall. If you want to bring a chair and sit with us under the ramp, feel free!

I’ve recently had a few people ask me if I’m being serious about something I’ve said, or something I’ve posted on Facebook. To both of these, I have to answer yes. I’m not that good at sarcasm and my sister, Bene`, long ago instilled a “no complaining or criticizing” on Facebook policy. Thus, the title of the post is, in all honesty, serious.

Eric and I have had mutual friends for over 20 year. I’m not sure how 20 years have gone by so fast, but yes, 20 years. We’ve known each other socially for about 18 years. In all honesty, I was not the biggest Eric Menzel fan. When our friends tried to sneakingly set us  up in 2007, I was not interested. I told them, “I remember Menzel. I think I’ll pass.” Well, after many attempts, they finally got us at the same table. As we talked, Eric was using language I did not remember him using years ago. He talked about how he envisioned community and how he wanted to surround himself with a supportive community of active participants who knowingly left more than they took. That may look different at different times, and he recognized that he would likely never be wealthy in money, but there were so many other things he would be rich in.

This type of conversation was something I had not heard from anyone in a long time. I often heard the church talk of community, but seeing it in action was another thing. In visiting Eric over the next few weeks and months into early 2008, it was impressive to see this mind set in action. Thus an unexpected love affair began.

In continuing with the idea of community, Eric often has people ask him how he made something, for a recipe, or how to butcher a bird. We often hear others say, “why do you want people to know how you make things? Aren’t you afraid they will think they won’t need you anymore?” To which he replies, “Why wouldn’t I want them to be successful, provide for themselves and see us as a reliable part of their community?”

This leads us into this weeks recipe. Our regular customers, Ron and Dana Robinson (click on both their names-they both provide pretty awesome services in this area), asked how Eric makes the herb dressing that the Ralston Creekside Speakeasy serves up each week. In the spirit of community and helping one another grow, here you go:

In a blender put

1 1/2 c herbs (we have been using oregano and lemon balm)

1 Tablespoon dijon mustard

2 eggs

Salt and pepper to taste

1 teaspoon sugar (optional, but recommended)

1/4 c. red vinegar

1 + c of veggie oil to taste (sunflower oil is what we use-its also the most healthy, not hydrogenated, all-purpose oil –it’s from flower seeds not cereal grains)

Now, here’s a trick. If the dressing seems stiff, like a mayonnaise before it has the right taste (i.e., too acidic) drizzle in cold water. This will loosen the dressing. You can then proceed adding the necessary amount of oil to cut the acidity just right.

I hope you all venture out and try to make some dressing. We look forward to seeing you all tomorrow!

Hopeful possibilities for next week: Choi and spinach!


About saltforkfarms

A small organic farm in Iowa that raises Standard Breed laying hens and hybrid broiler chickens suited for a pasture-based system, as well as varieties of vegetables and fruit suitable to our Eastern Iowa climate. We grow food, we eat food, we sell food!
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