The 9 course meal we ate on Saturday night was completely sourced from a 100 mile radius of the restaurant. Given its location just east of Seattle, it was no surprise that salmon, geoduck, mussels, and oysters were on the menu. We also ate local lamb and pork. All the veggies like turnips, carrots, greens, cabbage, potatoes, beets, and cucumber came from the restaurant farm, as did all the herbs and flowers used in the dishes. (Day lilies, Marigolds, and Bachelor Buttons are surprisingly tasty.) There were lovely local mushrooms. All the wines had been commissioned from local vintners by the restaurant owners last year for the meal. Cooking fat was either butter, grape seed oil, or hazelnut oil. They grow quinoa locally, and we had that, too.
The restaurant owners went to the extreme, though, to make sure that everything we ate was from within 100 miles. That meant that they churned their own butter from milk from local cows, and planted a couple of acres of rye and wheat to mill their own flour for the bread. They collected clean local sea water to make their own salt. We had no pepper, but there were so many farm herbs in the food that we didn’t miss it at all. Lemon verbena provided all the citrus we needed. The biggest dilemma was what to use for locally sourced leavening for the hazelnut cakes we had for dessert.
They started out last year collecting mule deer antlers from within a 100 mile radius of the farm and grinding them to a powder. Horn is apparently a good leavening agent and made some pretty good cakes. It takes a lot of laborious, time consuming grinding, though, and they found an even better leavening agent in wood ash from the fire place. Who knew?
Plan a meal completely sourced from a 100 mile radius of your house. What would you serve?