As the weather warms (at least when we stand in direct sunlight out of the wind), fantasies of grilled food begins to appear in my mind. Fortunately we just purchased a new countertop grill, so there’s no need to wait until July. Now we can have grilled food at any time, so I decided to try a locavore hamburger.
Hamburger buns present a challenge to Whatcom locavores, though. The nearest commercially produced grain is grown in Skagit County, and they don’t produce very much. So what can we do? See my article on Food Purchasing Priorities.
In this case, I decided to make my own hamburger buns using all local ingredients, except for the flour, which was made by a local mill, the Fairhaven Organic Flour Mill (Bellingham). The Fairhaven Mill uses organic grains from around the west, including eastern Washington, and mills them fresh weekly. They encourage local grain production.
For this week’s hamburger buns, I used their Hard Red Spring Wheat bread flour, purchased from the bulk bins at Terra Organica (Bellingham). I was able to use nearly a cup less than when I’ve made the same recipe with other flours. The Mill says this is because this flour has a higher protein content.
Fairhaven Mill makes a wide variety of flours from many kinds of grains. I’m looking forward to experimenting with their pasta flour soon, and next week I plan to use some of their blue cornmeal.
The newest local produce at the market this week was napa cabbage (sometimes called Chinese cabbage) grown by Broadleaf Farms (Everson). It was wonderfully crisp and delicious!
Here’s this week’s menu:
Countertop grilling may never match the smoky flavor of food cooked over hickory charcoal, but it’s the next best thing when the weather isn’t cooperative!