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Not only am I an eclectic person, my food sources tend to be eclectic!  Some weeks I am in line at the food bank.  Some months, I manage to share expense or barter for a CSA box from a local, organic farm.  Every once in a while, I am spoiled by random opportunities such as my recent visit to Taos, New Mexico.  Regardless of my food source, I try to eat healthy, creative, efficient and elegant meals.

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Jess, Asumi and I at the Santa Fe Airport.

My friends Jessica, Asumi and I stayed at a beautiful property called Casa Gallina. Thankfully, Casa Gallina is operated under many of my own values.  Richard Spera was our gracious host who visited each day with fresh eggs from the backyard chickens and baked goods.  Upon our arrival, Richard greeted us with an incredible spread including nuts, olives, goat cheese literally made on a friend’s goat farm down the road, roasted red peppers, and wine (I’m probably forgetting something, there was so many items to choose from).

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This egg was still warm because it was literally laid minutes before Richard brought it to us.

We were also invited to harvest fresh, organic vegetables from the side yard garden.  Let me tell you, we were in heaven!  Never on earth had I imagined such a decadent bed and breakfast experience.

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Asumi delighted in harvesting spinach, mizuna, arugula, garlic scapes, dill, and broccoli from the side yard garden.

The kitchen was so beautiful that I was tempted to film an Iron Shawna video while we were there.  My concern was that we weren’t necessarily cooking by the Iron Shawna method: cooking well using only ingredients on hand.

Jess reminded me that the chicken eggs and side yard vegetables were definitely ingredients on hand.  We also made good use of grocery supplies and restaurant leftovers throughout the week.  On our last day, we wrapped up the majority of our leftovers to snack on during our flights home: Jess’ banana bread (not pictured in this post: it was so good that we ate it before getting photos!), hard boiled eggs, carrots, snap peas, sautéed veggies from breakfast, cheese and yogurt.  We were quite proud of ourselves for efficiently using nearly every ingredient offered and purchased during our week at Casa Gallina.

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Jess made us caprese salad with a Casa Gallina twist by using leafy greens from the side yard garden.

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Asumi scrambled eggs and sautéed broccoli with garlic scapes from the side yard garden. Fresh arugula and dill served as added color and flavor. These vegetables were so fresh we really didn’t need much seasoning!

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Asumi made us sunny side up eggs with sautéed veggies from the side yard garden. We also had bread and butter from the natural, organic, gourmet, and local grocery store in Taos County. We were also spoiled every morning with locally brewed coffee grounds (I believe they were organic, fair trade, and possibly shade grown…though I cannot find any evidence online to support this belief).

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I got inspired by the egg cups in the kitchen, and made us all soft boiled eggs. We used leftover mozzarella and sautéed arugula, spinach with leftover dill. The sausages came from the natural, organic, gourmet, and
local grocer in Taos County.

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Our last breakfast included yellow squash, carrots, snap peas and cheese from the natural, organic, gourmet, and local grocer in Taos County. We also mixed in a few black beans leftover from a previous restaurant meal. We were so grateful that Richard’s chickens provided eggs every day during our week at Casa Gallina.

I highly recommend Casa Gallina to anyone wishing to visit Taos, NM.  Even if you just want to get away in a peaceful space, this is where you want to be: rain or shine, snow or otherwise.

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