Monday, July 21, 2008

Sunday dinner with my parents, especially my Dad

My story is about my Dad, and his love of summer food.

My father visited me at the farmer's market this Saturday on his way back from the dump. He was sweaty and tired, so we got him a lemonade at the Cakes for Cause booth where I was volunteering. He stayed and chatted a few minutes, and we decided that we would have Sunday dinner at my parents' house. I gave him the 4-pound sirloin that I had just purchased from Rohrer's meats, and he asked me to buy some zucchini and squash. After dad left, I picked up the veggies from Jubilee Organic Farm, and also got apricots and peaches from Scenic View.

Dinner yesterday was a feast. I took pictures, which I'll add to my post when I get them. First, there were kebabs. Dad had marinated the meat overnight in Soy Vay Teriyaki, which is hands down my favorite teriyaki. The veggies were marinated in oil and vinegar. Dad had also gotten ahold of some peppers and onions. We had corn on the cob, and a waldorf cole slaw that I made from a recipe on a bag of cabbage. Then there was multigrain bread. And fresh peaches that I blanched (to remove the skins) and sliced.

After all of the grilled food was on the table, Dad piled a bunch of it on his plate, and then just stood and looked at it and said. "Oh my God." I looked over from my station in the kitchen where I was still prepping food, a little worried, and he said "Dinner looks so good. You know I've been starving myself all day for this." My mom replied, "except for the pancakes and sausage and eggs you had for breakfast." I should note that my Dad is not a heavy man. He grew up on a dairy farm in Frederick and has kept himself active all of these years by doing things like managing the forest on my parents' "gentleman's farm" and taking his recycling to the dump. Dad LOVES summer food, made simple and fresh, with lots of veggies. Where my mother would grow flowers, Dad would grow food, buckets and buckets of it every summer. We always had fresh veggies in the summer, and always too much of them, and that's what summer is for me. Too much of a good thing. And then you can it to make it go away and it keeps coming back long after you're sick of it. But in July, the food is just starting to pour in, and that is the best time.

Dad sat down at the table and started eating as I was still cutting peaches in the kitchen and mom was broiling toast. "I blessed the food already," he said. "Yeah, I can tell," I told him.

Can I just say that was the tenderest sirloin I have ever eaten? And the veggies the height of freshness? I asked Dad, "want me to tell Danny Rohrer how good the meat was?" And he said, "no, don't tell him. It will go to his head."

At one point Dad said, "I'm sorry Shannon, but I just can't do justice to this cole slaw," and he put his back in the serving bowl. There were too many extra helpings of veggies standing in its way and just kept getting pushed back in the queue. It was a good slaw though-make a regular cole slaw and add apples, craisins, walnuts, and celery. Awesome.

The peaches were sweet and tart and very "peachy". Dad teased me, "did you spray these with peachiness?" In fact, everything was sprayed with peachiness.


No comments: