Heirloom Meals: Savoring Yesterday's Traditions Today

Friday August 27, 2010

Carole’s Concoctions:
Berkshire Grown/Country Living Dinner

Boy have I been concocting!!  The summer bounty brings out all my culinary creativity!!  But, rather than go there right now,  I wanted to spend some more time sharing the preparation, recipes and photos of the Berkshire Grown/Country Living event that was hosted at my home last Sunday, August 22nd.

The mini cooper stuffed to capacity with flowers, tomatoes
and goodies I collected around the county for the event.

What a delightful ride I had down to Salisbury CT where I picked up the short ribs from Whippoorwill Farm, my next stop was Great Barrington to pick up the generously donated Berkshire Blue Cheese for the dip and the cheese course - what a treat to see the facility where the award-winning cheese is made!!

Next, I had to get into high gear to make the caramelized onions, boil our beautiful blue bantam eggs for the deviled eggs (No salmonella fear here!!).
On Saturday morning, I had a beautiful drive down to Wild and Cultivated Farm and met the lovely Anna Mack in Egremont to pick up fresh cut flowers that Donna, Dale and I made up into great arrangements - an old mason jar with yellow and chocolate sunflowers finished with flowering basil - perfection in its simplicity!! Then onto Farm Girl Farm, Guido's, Taft Farm and even, yes the Price Chopper!!
The event was magical.  It was conceived as an outdoor farm to table feast but as fate would have it we had a wild, windy and wet storm that forced us to move the event inside.  We created a dreamy, safe place to drink, dine and exchange great conversation with sensational gusts of wind swirling through the room to remind all of the storm from which we were all safely protected!
And if the food, people and environment were not enough, the icing on the evening's cake was the emotionally moving performance of  Emily Mure, a beautiful and talented singer-song writer who filled the room with her melodic voice and melancholy tunes that had half the room dabbing tears from their eyes.
Emil Mure

Oh and did I promise you recipes??....OK...here's the chicken recipe that is show-stopping delicious from, believe it or not, my Dad's side of the family:

Cousin Ruthie’s Divine Chicken Breasts served with heirloom tomato napoleans
Most of the time my Dad’s side of the family gets the culinary shaft but as I was trying to find an alternative chicken recipe that I could pull off for 30+ people, I remembered this recipe.  We had it at a big family dinner and my Mom and I got the recipe and have served it with great success for many large parties.
2 cups sour cream
1/4 cup lemon juice
4 tsp worcestershire sauce
4 tsp celery salt
2 tsp paprika
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
6 hole boneless, skinless chicken breast (halved)
1 3/4 cups bread crumbs
1 cup butter, melted
Combine in a large bowl, add breast to sour cream mixture, cover bowl and marinate in refrigerator overnight.  
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Roll breast in bread crumbs, arrange in single layer in a shallow baking dish.  Spoon half of butter over breast.  Bake for 45 minute, then add rest of butter and bake for another 15 minutes until golden.