Seriously, I married a hippy

Some of you have been following along at home with the adventures in food around the farm. I’ve always been allergic to onions (didn’t realize that the symptoms were allergy and not intolerance until just recently) and then developed an allergy to mushrooms about ten years ago.

Fabulous Publisher Babe(tm) is allergic to anything derived from a grass: soy, wheat, oats, barley, corn, rice. In addition, nightshades (tomatoes and peppers) are bad except in small amounts. And eggs make her break out in hives.

So we tend to not eat anything with an ingredient list, especially something marked “natural flavors,” whatever that means.

Dead critter. Fresh veggies.

On top of that, I make a trough of stew every week and cut out a bowl for breakfast any morning except Sundays, when I go down to Krain. (If you’re in the mood for good food, join me sometime. 8am)

And then there is the anti-stodgy campaign, where we try to do something new every month. Music, food, places to shop, whatever. New for the sake of new.

So she and a friend took a cooking class on kombucha  and kvass last week. She has a jar of each on the counter across from me as I write this morning, slowly brewing. Or whatever they do.

The other night, we made offal sausage. It goes into the flavor packs that I use as a base for my stew. (Chicken thigh, duck confitt, pork skin, frozen shrimp in the most recent 4 I made).

But she’s decided to try making her own stews now, so we made a bunch of offal. And she doesn’t like hers with as much vinegar or tomato as I do, so they’ll be different flavor profiles and ingredient lists. We still start with offal sausage. Or whatever you want to call it.

I have a kitchen aid stand mixer that belonged to my first wife, Donna. Added a meat grinder years ago. Make sausage regularly around here, including Thanksgiving.

Most Americans do not eat enough offal (heart, liver, tongue, gizzard, etc.). They get meat (shoulder, belly, butt), but not the innards they need to be healthy, which is one of the reasons we’re so much less healthy than our great-grandparents were. (At least the rest of you.)

So we hit the store and loaded up. Ended up with about 6 pounds of stuff. Beef liver. Pork liver. Chicken livers. Chicken hearts. Pork heart. Chicken gizzards. Bacon ends from a pig we got last year.

All that got chopped up and put through the grinder, with a teaspoon of cayenne just on general principles. I grind everything twice through the smaller facing, with the spice being mixed in after the first pass so that we get a smooth flavor and texture.

Broke it into nine individual packs and froze them, so that I can just grab four with my ingredients next time I need to make breakfasts.

She kept back a pound overnight so she could make herself what she calls porcine crack. Liver pate, with one pound of the offal instead of just straight liver, and then another pound of the really fatty Beeler’s bacon, plus fresh herbs from the garden that she walked out and snipped. Instead of onions and butter, the fat from the bacon gets supplemented with coconut oil.

It ends up this lovely, yummy loaf of goodness when you pour it over parchment paper resting in a small bread pan. Cool until it firms. Chop into four chunks, three of which get tossed into the freezer and marked “crack” (she thought I was kidding until she went and looked.) The last one is in the fridge, where she only allows herself a spoonful at a time.

But damn, that’s good stuff.