Heaven & earth never agreed better to frame a place for man’s habitation; were it fully manured and inhabited by industrious people.
Captain John Smith barely exaggerated. So good are the fish and flesh, fruit and vegetables of Chesapeake Country that they need no adornment. Or very little. Salt and pepper, oil and vinegar are complements enough. Add some fire, and you’ve got all you need.
On the other hand, a good recipe sparks the imagination, urging fuller communion with the bounty of the season, land and water. Which is what Maryland Buy Local Week — continuing through July 27 — is all about.
Again this year, Gov. Martin and First Lady Katie O’Malley host a Buy Local Cookout at Government House to showcase inspiring recipes created by Maryland chefs in collaboration with Maryland farmers, watermen and aquaculturists.
Anne Arundel and Calvert County farms, restaurants and chefs are well represented.
Again this year, we tempt you with our favorite recipes, suited to the season, to keep you cool in cooking and in eating. Find the full cookbook at http://mda.maryland.gov/Documents/
Chilled Gooseberry Soup
Created by Chef Justin Moore of Vin 909 Winecafe in Annapolis, who paired with Groundworks Farm of Wicomico County
The soup is cool and cooling, but you’ll have to turn on the oven, briefly, to roast the gooseberries. Harder may be locating the berries.
2 quarts local gooseberries, shucked
1 teaspoon sugar or to taste
1 cup crème fraîche
1 teaspoon salt or to taste
Mint for garnish
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Roast fresh gooseberries until lightly caramelized, about 10 minutes. Combine with salt, sugar and crème fraîche and blend in a blender. Pass through a conical sieve. Chill mixture. Adjust consistency with water and check for seasoning.
Maryland Avenue House-Cured, Irish-Style, Pork-Wrapped Cantaloupe on Baby Sorrel with Blackberry Vinaigrette
Created by Chef Kevin Duffy of Galway Bay in Annapolis, with produce from Enticement Farms, Schillinger Farm (aka Papa John’s) and Plants Microgreens
From a name like that, you wouldn’t expect cool. Yet only one ingredient, bacon, is cooked and that very briefly. The big surprise: the pork loin is pickled rather than cooked.
4 pounds of pork loin
1 quart water
1⁄4 cup kosher salt
1⁄4 cup white sugar
2 tablespoons pink curing salt
Mix water, salts and sugar. Pour over pork loin and submerge completely in the brine for 5 days in the refrigerator to create Irish-style bacon. Remove and slice thin.
1 ounce baby sorrel
3 ounces cantaloupe
3 ounces Irish style bacon (sliced thin and cooked)
Slice melon into wedges. Slice bacon as needed. Cook bacon on griddle or frying pan, then wrap around cantaloupe and arrange on top of a bed of sorrel. Drizzle with the Blackberry Vinaigrette.
1 pint blackberries
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon honey
1⁄4 cup red wine vinegar
1 pinch salt
1 pinch white pepper
1⁄2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Combine first 6 ingredients and puree. Slowly whisk in olive oil. Strain to remove seeds.
Orecchiette Pasta with Fresh Corn Pesto
Created by Michael Archibald, chef at Herrington on the Bay in Rose Haven, with corn from Swann Farms in Calvert County
4 bacon slices, diced
4 cups white corn
1 clove garlic, minced
11⁄4 teaspoons kosher salt or coarse salt
3⁄4 teaspoon pepper
2 1⁄2 ounces extra virgin olive oil
1⁄2 cup Parmesan cheese
1⁄2 cup pine nuts, toasted
Cook bacon in large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp and brown, stirring often. Using slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon drippings from skillet. Add corn, garlic, 11⁄4 teaspoons coarse salt and 3⁄4 teaspoon pepper to drippings in skillet. Sauté over medium-high heat until corn is just tender but not brown, about 4 minutes.
Transfer 11⁄2 cups corn kernels to small bowl and reserve. Scrape remaining corn mixture into food processor. Add Parmesan cheese and pine nuts. With machine running, add olive oil through feed tube and blend until pesto is almost smooth. Set pesto aside.
8 ounces orecchiette pasta
3⁄4 cup fresh basil
4 ounces tomatoes, diced
Cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain, reserving 11⁄2 cups pasta cooking liquid. Return pasta to pot. Add corn pesto, reserved corn kernels and 1⁄2 cup basil leaves. Toss pasta mixture over medium heat until warmed through, adding reserved pasta cooking liquid by 1⁄4 cupfuls to thin to desired consistency, 2 to 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Transfer pasta to large shallow bowl. Sprinkle with remaining 1⁄4 cup basil leaves, diced tomato and reserved bacon. Serve pasta, passing additional grated Parmesan alongside.
Peach Habañero Sticky Ribs
Created by Chef Aaron Bessick of Union Hospital in Cecil County, a hospital that has committed to working with local farmers and ranchers to provide healthy meals for patients, visitors and staff. Ribs come from Liberty Delight Farms of Reisterstown.
Keep the heat outdoors with ribs barbecued on the grill. The sauce cooks while you’re preparing the ribs and the grill. Peach peels slip off after covering the fruit with boiling water for a few moments then plunging in ice water.
12 ripe peaches
1⁄2 habañero pepper
1 cup brown sugar
1⁄2 cup honey
1⁄2 cup apple cider vinegar
1⁄3 cup Worcestershire sauce
11⁄3 cup water
1 rack pork ribs
Peel and pit peaches, rough chop and place in food processor. Combine all remaining ingredients. Blend until puréed. Place purée into a 5-quart saucepan and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Simmer for 30 minutes.
On an outdoor grill, brush peach mixture onto ribs during cooking. Roast approximately one hour, or until meat starts falling off the bone.