Now that’s a starter.
- red shishito peppers, an heirloom non-hybrid variety of peppers from Alewife Farm, which, at least in this very first experience of them, we both found even more delicious than the familiar, less mature, green ones (they were chewier, in a good way, and while each boasted a little heat, the hottest of this batch was still not as hot as the hottest green shishito we might regularly experience), washed, drained, dried, then sautéed over medium high heat in a seasoned 13.5″ cast iron pan for a few minutes, stirring, seasoned with Maldon salt, arranged on the plates, more of the salt added, to taste
- slices from a She Wolf Bakery miche
- the wine was an Italian (Abruzzo) rosé, Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo, Sirio 2017, from Astor Wines
The main course was just as delicious as the appetizer, although without the frisson of anticipating a surprise level of scoville units; also it was a little more complicated to prepare.
- four tiny loin goat chops, each averaging less than 3 ounces, from Lynnhaven Dairy Goat Farm, marinated for about 45 minutes in a mix of a couple tablespoons of olive oil, 2 small sliced cloves of fresh garlic from from Alex’s Tomato Farm, freshly-ground black pepper, 8 slightly-crushed juniper berries, some roughly-chopped rosemary from Phillips Farms, one medium crushed bay leaf from Westside Market, and a little zest from an organic Whole Foods Market lemon, then pan-grilled for a few minutes, turning 3 times, seasoned with sea salt and freshly-ground pepper after the first time, finished with a bit juice from an organic Whole Foods Market lemon and a drizzle of olive oil, garnished with micro red basil from Two Guys from Woodbridge
- eight tiny golden zucchini or yellow summer squash from Berried Treasures Farm, the last on the farm’s Greenmarket table that afternoon(one of those in the picture didn’t survive the journey), washed, dried, halved lengthwise, tossed with a little olive oil, sea salt, and freshly-ground black pepper, pan grilled until softened and slightly charred, turning once, arranged on the plates, scattered with cut parsley and torn spearmint leaves, both herbs from Phillips Farms, a bit of one finely chopped medium spicy ahi rico pepper from Alewife Farm, also 8 or so halved pitted kalamata olives from Whole Foods Market, drizzled with a little olive oil and served at room temperature
- some peppery red watercress from Dave Harris’s Max Creek Hatchery
- the wine was a Spanish/Catalonia/Priorat red, Sao del Coster, Priorat 2015, from Flatiron Wines
- the music throughout the meal was the beautiful symphonies Joseph Martin Kraus composed in the 1770’s and 1780’s, Werner Ehrhardt conducting Concerto Köln
[the image of Kraus as a student in Erfurt is a portrait attributed to Jakob Samuel Beck, and it appears on the composer’s Wikipedia page]