Creamy cucumber salad

Need a cucumber recipe to use up a surplus of cucumbers? Or how about a salad recipe that can be whipped up quickly for a group gathering? I grew up with my mom cooking from scratch for every meal and I loved her cucumber salads but as I grew older i discovered I just can’t eat a lot sugar anymore so I took her basic recipe and modified to suite my taste.

I am not a fan of the traditional waxed cucumbers unless I remove all the seeds and by that point a great deal of the cucumber is gone. So I always prefer the english ones. Fourth of july is coming up so make a batch and watch it disappear.

Alarita Cider Turkey Breast

We haven’t made too big of a deal about it yet, but we will now. Brittany Ridge Farms now has Turkey Breast. This means the NCF Store now has Turkey Breast. SWMBO & I have had some fun filling our families bellies with these wonders. Now I have to share. Even if I don’t want to share.

The one thing I try to keep out of my house is processed lunch meat. I try to make a bit extra at dinner for a light lunch for us for the next day. Somehow there are rarely leftovers on meat though no matter how hard I try.  This means that once or twice a week I make an extra roast. Or if I make a Turkey Breast then my family has plenty of meat left over for a few sandwiches. And as much as my family loves the Herb Butter Recipe from Thanksgiving I prefer something a bit different from time to time.

The one thing we still need to do with Turkey though is Brine. Turkey is just too low in fat through the muscle to make it a moist meat without Brining.  I recommend that you simply make the Brince the night before drop your Turkey Breast in it. Then cook it the next day the perfect brine time is somewhere between 12-23 hours. Some folks I know do a 36 hour brine, I only recommend this if you are using a bird that hasn’t had time to properly rest after being harvested. Brine is a simple recipe 4 tablespoons of Kosher Salt to 4 cups of water.

Turkey Breast is sold in the NCF store for $10 per lb. The breasts weigh between 2.5-3 lbs. I usually get a dinner and 2 days of sandwiches for my family of 3. I then use the carcass to make soup. Waste not Want not.

Alarita Dry Rub is now a constant in my kitchen. I’ve gone through 2 bottles in the past year. I use it for roast vegetables and meats alike. It is a solid product at $8 a bottle.  It take a ho hum green bean or eggplant to “ooooo green bean & eggplant”. The tiny bit of brown sugar in it balances the flavor for herby flavor.

 

Cube Steak Alarita Style

Have we all recovered from the “This is Us” crockpot episode? I may never! Rutabaga’s need to use my oven on the daily basis to bake desserts has me using my new trusty crockpot to all of my friends & family’s glee.  After my 2 decades of disdain for crockpot they are all getting a great laugh that I’m using one.  I’ll sit here and eat my humble pie. I’m still not happy with relying on the darn thing. My tween  baker though needs to experiment and bake tasty desserts much to my waistlines demise.

The crazy weather we have been having is wrecking my weekly menu. Today and tomorrow will be in the 60’s the rest of the week will be 40’s. The nice thing though is that it is sunnier here in Raleigh than it was in Nashville during February. I remember one February back in the early 2000’s that we had 0 days of sunshine in Nashville. Good sunshine goes a long ways on cold days.

The folks at Alarita are always full of sunshine though. It is a great family business where I have yet to see one of them smiling. It is pretty contagious when you’re around them. Their happiness for life translates into their products giving you bright happy flavors. Their dry rub has a great herb mixture for my tomatoes with just enough sweetness to dampen the acidity.  The dry rub also works well on roasted veggies. The first time I met Jeanette I took her roasted eggplant with Alarita on it. She was an instant fan & is the one behind my home canned tomatoes I’ll be using today.

Cube steak is a machine tenderized coming from the round. Typically top round. It is one that needs a slow cooking process to help make it tender. Hello Crockpot.  In each package  of NCF Cube steak there are 3-4 steak(mostly 4)  priced at $9 per lb. Perfectly portioned for a hearty meal when the sun goes down and it turns cold out.  Alarita Seasoning runs $8 a bottle, buy it this will not be the only recipe you use it for.  This is one spice I use frequently in my cooking. Finally I’m going to top this meal at the end with Redneck Romano as tomatoes slow cooked beg for cheese. Redneck Romano is sold for 9.45 per lb and is sold in 8 oz wedges in our store.

Now to  throw everything into the pot set it and forget it till dinner. Try not to think of Jack too much.


Alarita Parmesan Squash

Squash Season is upon us once again.  Sadly this year there will be no squash  here at Ninja Cow Farm other than what folks bring us or the State Farmer’s Market provide. Last year we got blight in the gardening beds and until I can wrap them in black plastic for a month in September there shall be no squash.

My husband however is thrilled he  absolutely detests squash. He will eat Zucchini bread though if you don’t tell him what it is.  Finally though I found a method to get him to eat his Squash. Hopefully I will one day get him to eat Okra & Eggplant as well.

The folks at Alarita have been wonderful. This last weekend they came out to the farm for a tasting day. The brothers always have a warm smile with quick wit. Their Dry Rub Seasoning Blend has also quickly come to be my go to seasoning for meat and veggies. For an $8 rub it may seem pricey however it is a locally family made item that is incredibly versatile. Remember the Citrus Pork Recipe, well that was Alarita Dry Rub doing its magic there too.  I keep saying I’m going to try it on eggs but so far I haven’t had a chance.

Try this dish out and see if your picky squash eater enjoys it too. With quick broiling it stays firm for those with texture issues.

Enjoy

Alarita Citrus Pork Roast

Dan has been writing on the blog about all the taste testing on the farm, we’ve all put on a few extra pounds with it.  Now the products that we are going to carry have been handed off to me to make yummy lunches and dinners with.  Luckily I have a husband  & daughter who are adventurous eaters for the most part.

Today I’m aiming  for a savory sweet pork roast. One that livens up the dinner plate yet is balanced enough to not overwhelm the rest of the dinner. This is where Alarita comes in. Yesterday the sons of Miss La Rita came in with their salsa’s. We got to talking and we were throwing idea’s off of each other like the finals at Wimbledon.

With a pork roast you want to roast it at a low temperature giving the fat time to cook down and spread through the meat. Roughly an hour and fifteen minutes per pound. My favorite temperature to roast pork is at 280 degrees. Today with the citrus involved we are going a bit higher to 300 to get the sugar to play nice.

The Pork Butt & Picnic Roast both come in at $7.50 lb. The roast you see here weigh 2.66. And provide 1 meal for 4 and lunch for me. I had our neighbors Erin & Mark taste test the roast as well. All around everyone loved it. For lunch I used it to make lettuce wraps, and it was definitely just as great the 2nd time around.