Dark Days recap for the South Region: Week 12

We are now 3 months into the Dark Days Challenge. As I read different blog posts from different participants across the country I am starting to see more and more entries of participants that are finally feeling more and more challenged. Some people are running out of stored fall vegetables like squash and potatoes, while others don’t have farmer’s markets open in their area at all. Many of us have year round farmer’s markets and that really makes things easy in terms of finding local foods. It also helps to keep with a seasonal eating theme.

Susan (VA) from Backyard Grocery presented a beautiful stuffed duck breast for this weeks challenge. This beauty was stuffed with onion, mushroom, garlic and cream cheese. She served it along with broccoli rabe and mashed turnips.  Everyone, including their dinner guests, gave the entire meal a big thumbs up.  Visit her blog to learn about her nice local resources and see her wonderful step-by-step layout for her recipe.

Annie (MD) from AnnieRie Unplugged made a nice local omelet for this weeks challenge. She is concentrating on local ingredients, and also supporting local businesses for some of her things. With the help of a CSA that deliveries all winter long and a few markets that are open all year, she is finding great resources. Eggs, bacon, collard greens, baby swiss, mushrooms, milk and butter – all local. Served on the side was some fresh bread from a local bakery. Stop by her blog to read about her wonderful CSA and learn more.

Victoria (MD) from The Soffritto prepared an appetizing boeuf cabernet with mashed potatoes. She used a chuck roast, homemade onion soup, garlic, carrots and thyme and sage and let this roast slow cook in the oven. On the side she made some beautiful light and fluffy mashed potatoes. Head over to her blog and you will see how tender and juicy her meal looks and also check out her local resources.

Jessica (SC) from Eat.Drink.Nourish. didn’t feel winter had properly visited their area yet this season. Well, be careful what you wish for, because a cold front went through and “cooled” things down. With the weather change and just an overall feeling of being just slightly off balance, she made a great DDC meal to get herself feeling back on track. Garlic gnocchi with butter, bacon and blue cheese crumble, topped with arugula sprouts hit the spot. Visit her blog to read more and see her local resources.

Rebecca (VA) from Eating Floyd has been saving a venison backstrap for a special meal. Valentine’s Day was the perfect time to bring it out. She stuffed the backstrap with blue cheese and seared it before putting it in the oven to finished cooking. She also heated up some homegrown, home-canned green beans and prepared some carrots for the meal too. Visit her blog to see her whole meal and read more.

Finding and cooking local foods has not been the challenge for Jackie (NC) from Southern Fried Goodness, although this challenge is making her think more about local foods all around and be more aware of them. The challenge for Jackie is finding time to blog about it.  I am glad she had time to tell us about her local chicken and dumplings with kohlrabi and baby carrots. Kohlrabi is fast becoming a new favorite for Jackie. Head over to her blog to see her recipe and learn more about her local resources.

Jes (VA) from Eating Appalachia was having a hard time slowing down and her meal this week gave her a much needed opportunity to take a deep breath and enjoy the meditative aspects of just chopping vegetables. She prepared a nice dish with roasted vegetables served over mashed potatoes. The slowed down pace of just chopping the veg, the comfort of mashed potatoes, and the flavors of the roasted butternut squash, kale, and tofu put her back on track. Stop by her blog for information on her local resources and more.

Monika (NC) from Windy City Vegan made a beautiful broccoli and roasted corn chowder for her meal this week. My first reaction was to the deep color this soup takes on and then after reading her recipe I can see this soup is also packed full of flavors. Broccoli, roasted corn, potatoes and herbs de Provence make up the body of this soup, and then she has topped it off with tofu croutons. Beautiful. Visit her blog to see her recipe with variations and see her local resources too.

If you have some time, travel around the individual blogs and see what what they are all up to. You will find recipes and links to local resources.

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