By Chef Shane Cheshire, Taste Catering
Taste Catering is known for great food. Farm-to-table is often the preferred choice to source and fill its catering menu needs.
Anyone can help make food great again! As one of the chefs of Taste Catering and a local farmer of Barn Yard Farms, I find it an easy choice to live healthier — not to mention supporting our local ranchers and small farms, such as Barn Yard Farms.
When food tastes good and is nutritious, we are more likely to choose wisely when faced with the decision of what’s for dinner. That is why we see a lot of significance in the farm-to-table vision as a fantastic opportunity to unite the best in restaurant fare, family meals and our community.
A good plan for healthy eating makes it easy to source most of your family’s meals. All you have to do is visit any of your local farmer’s markets or directly reach out to your local farmers, and now there’s such a thing as virtual farmer’s markets where you place an order, and it is delivered to your front door with a weekly subscription.
Participating in your local community farms and markets will bring you a tremendous sense of community and satisfaction.
So what exactly is farm-to-table?
Farm-to-table is not a new vision; it has been around for decades. Farmer’s markets have long been an essential part of the farm-to-table vision. Farm-to-table means harnessing the produce, livestock and seafood of local farmers, ranchers and fisheries. To put it plainly, it is buying local and supporting your local community.
Did you know most produce loses its nutrients within 24 hours of harvesting? Yeah, that’s right! So, get out to your local markets and get the freshly harvested things you need to give your family the best quality they can have.
Why is it so important?
For one thing, it promotes healthier eating and living. By sourcing locally, chefs, caterers and families can get their ingredients quicker while at peak freshness and full of nutrients. Consumers get it. Food tastes exceptionally better and contains natural vitamins and nutrients that promote better health and healing when fresh off the farm.
The advantages of farm-to-table go far above a great meal.
Farm-to-table benefits the chefs and consumers and has excellent value to the community. The local economy is strengthened by buying from local farmers, ranchers, farms and fisheries. Farming in the U.S. has been steadily declining over the last 90 years due to cheaper imports of produce, seafood and meats from other countries.
Imported produce, seafood and meats require freezing or additives for preservation. In addition, international sources are hard to track regarding growing and livestock raising health and food safety practices. When we buy internationally, it costs more, the food is not as fresh, and there are real concerns about food safety.
The farm-to-table concept is changing how we value what we eat. By encouraging more local sourcing, we are seeing sustainable farming again on the rise. The support is growing, not just with consumers but in every aspect, from local economies to community life.
Let’s support healthy living and make food great again! Support your local small farmers and live well. From Taste Catering and Barn Yard Farms to your table, I wish you all well, and God bless!
Pecan-crusted sea scallops and more
Chopped candied pecans, 1/2 cup
Sea scallops, 3 10-20 scallops
Chef’s blend microgreens, 3 oz
Yellow oyster mushrooms, 3 oz
1 large fresh local lemon juiced and zested
Butter, half stick
Olive oil, 1/2 cup divided
Salt and pepper to your liking
1) Get your mise en place together.
2) Set scallops out to dry and remove the beard. Pat dry and set aside.
3) Chop candied pecans reserving three halves for garnish
4) Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Toss the yellow mushrooms in olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place in a shallow roasting pan and roast for 20 minutes; pull out and set aside.
Lightly toss the chef’s blend microgreens with olive oil and salt and set aside.
Heat nonstick pan over low heat and add 1/4 cup olive oil.
Pat dry scallops and press the tops of the scallops into the chopped candied pecans; when all the scallops are coated, turn up the heat to medium and begin to sear the scallops when crispy on the tops; turn over with tongs and sear the bottoms. Make sure not to overcook. It will only take a few minutes on each side. Remove scallops from the pan and reduce heat to low; add lemon juice, let reduce for one minute and then add the butter. Swirl it around as the butter begins to brown, and continue to cook for one more minute, constantly swirling. Remove from heat.
Plate your dish and spoon the lemon brown butter onto the plate or over the entire dish. Garnish with pecan halves and lemon zest.