Sunday, October 24, 2010

Project Food Blog #6 - Fresh From the Farm Picnic

Sweet, sweet Georgia.

This challenge came at the perfect time. I'm actually away this weekend on my town's annual organic farm tour. The 34 farms that supply my co-op, New Leaf in Tallahassee, FL, are open to allow customers to tour their farms and understand the source of the delicious variety offered in town. It brings in people from all over North Florida and South Georgia with tours all day on Saturday and Sunday, since these farms not only provide product to New Leaf, but to local farmer's market, CSAs, and even Whole Foods.

Cows that supply the raw milk we enjoy.

On Saturday, I spent the whole day touring the farms in Georgia, and I'm actually posting this from the road while in the middle of my Florida farm tour on Sunday.

Getting the arugula for the BLTs.

Being out in the wilderness, breathing fresh air, and literally seeing the source of my foods provides inspiration for a cook like no other. The inspiration for this road trip meal was local, sustainable, organic Georgia produce, supplied directly from the source. I have included the recipes now, and will be speaking in depth about each farm that contributed to this meal over the coming days.

Where our bacon for the BLT comes from.

Today, my friend Sara is with me and was able to share this picnic of Georgia Roasted Peanuts, Fried Green Tomato BLTs with Orange Blossom Honey, Pickled Okra Popsicles, and Georgia Peach Trifles. We stopped to enjoy our picnic at Florida's only organic winery in Monticello. The meal was just as perfect as today. Although the meal is simple, the taste is quite lavish for outdoors. The smoked bacon and Tupelo honey stood out the most in the BLT, while the pickled okra disappeared quickly - it reminds me of my favorite dill pickles. Plus the trifle was divine, with a kick of bourbon at the very end.

A trick I learned from Martha Stewart's magazine is how to pack a picnic meal well. I tie together the drinks and sandwiches in an oversized tea towel, which I actually cut myself from an old tablecloth. The sandwich is wrapped in plastic, then laid end to end with the drink, rolled up diagonally in the tea towel, and finally a loop is tied together with the ends to serve as a handle to carry with you. Plus Sara had the cute idea to put a stick through the loop that serves as a handle for the drink and sandwich; it definitely makes it look like we've been on the road.

And the picnic basket is stuffed full of the Georgia roasted peanuts to prevent any of the glasses from knocking together - and it serves as the appetizer.

I would love to share my picnic with my readers in person, so maybe I'll see some of you on the tour and share some of the leftovers...if we have any.

Fried Green Tomato BLT with Orange Blossom Mayonnaise
Fried Green Tomatoes

2 cups peanut oil
1 green tomato
1/2 cup raw milk or buttermilk
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp black pepper

In a small, tall pot, add the peanut oil over medium-high heat. Slice the green tomato thinly, about 1/8" thick.

Dip the tomato slices into the milk, then into the flour. Add the tomatoes two at a time to the oil and fry for 2 min until golden brown.

Remove from the oil with tongs and lay on a plate lined with a paper towel to dry until use.

Orange Blossom Mayonnaise

2 eggs yolks
3 tbsp orange juice, freshly squeezed
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1 cup very light extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup Tupelo honey

In a large glass bowl, add the egg yolks, orange juice, and salt, stirring well. Using a whisk, add the olive oil very slowly, just a few drops at a time, whisking swiftly and only adding more oil when completely incorporated. Once half the oil has been added, the oil can be added more quickly, but not all at once. Lastly, pour in the honey and whisk together. Taste before using to adjust seasonings to your palate preference.


2 whole wheat rolls
4 tbsp orange blossom mayonnaise
8 pieces of arugula
6 fried green tomato slices
4 pieces bacon

Slice the rolls in half and add 1 tbsp mayonnaise to each side. From the bottom up, add per roll 4 pieces of arugula, 3 fried green tomatoes, and 2 pieces bacon. Serve warm if possible.

~Recipe adapted from Fanny's Garden Café.

Pickled Okra Popsicles
1 lb okra
2 cups filtered water
1 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 cup kosher salt
4 tsp red pepper flakes
4 whole garlic cloves
4 tsp yellow mustard seeds
4 tsp whole black peppercorns
8 fresh dill sprigs
4 8oz mason jars

Clean the okra thoroughly and trim most of the stems off. Lay on a towel to dry. 

In a very large, tall pot, boil the four glass mason jars, four silver rings, and the tongs used to move the pieces for 10 min. Use the tongs to move the jars to a towel and add the spices of red peper flakes through black peppercorns. 

Next, bundle together approximately seven pieces of okra and two dill springs per jar. Make sure your hands are clean and press down the okra to ensure a tight fit.

In a small pot over high heat, boil the water, white wine vinegar, and kosher salt. Then pour immediately into each mason jar, leaving at least 1/4" at the top for an air pocket. Use the tongs to dip the mason jar sealing lids into the large pot of boiling water for 30 - 60 seconds, then place on top of each jar, remove a ring from the boiling pot of water and transfer to each jar and screw on tight. Add a towel to the bottom of the boiling water pot, then add the four jars of pickled okra. 

Boil for 5 min, then remove and allow to cool on a towel before transferring to a pantry to cure for at least 2 weeks.

~Adapted from Alton Brown.

Georgia Peach Trifle
Pound Cake

3 large eggs
3 tbsp raw milk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups King Arthur Flour cake flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp kosher salt
3/4 cup finely ground turbinado sugar
13 tbsp butter

Preheat the oven to 350*F. Butter a loaf pan, add a layer of parchment paper at the bottom and butter as well.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, and vanilla. In a mixing bowl, add the cake flour, baking powder, salt, and turbinado - all sifted well.

Mix for 30 seconds at low speed, then add half the egg mixture on medium speed for 1 min. Add the rest of the egg mixture in two batches, mixing each for 30 seconds. Spoon the batter into the loaf pan and spread evenly. Bake for 55 min. 

Allow it to cool before serving.

~Recipe by Joy of Baking.

Organic Vanilla Pudding

3 1/2 cups raw milk
1/3 cup + 3 tbsp finely ground turbinado
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/8 tsp kosher salt
2 eggs + 1 egg yolk
2 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp butter

In a large steel bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup raw milk, 1/3 cup turbinado, cornstarch, salt, and eggs.

In a large sauce pan over medium-high heat, add 3 cups raw milk and 3 tbsp turbinado, stirring constantly. Stir for 5 min and remove once small bubbles begin to appear. The milk should be thicker. Pour the milk into the steel bowl very slowly while whisking; the mixture can be added more swiftly towards the end. Add the vanilla and butter, stir well. 

Pour the pudding through a fine mesh strainer into a clean bowl. Cover with plastic wrap touching the pudding and chill for 2 hrs in the refrigerator before serving.

~Recipe by Joy of Baking.


2 pound cake slices
2 tsp bourbon
4 slices Georgia peaches
1/2 cup organic vanilla pudding
whip cream
2 tsp pecan pieces

In 2 clean mason jars, Add a 1" square piece of pound cake at the bottom of each. Top the cake pieces with 1 tsp bourbon. Next add 2 peach slices per jar, then pour in 1/4 cup organic vanilla pudding in each jar. Then top with another slice of pound cake. Finally, top with whip cream to fill the jar and pecan pieces. Serve slightly chilled.

~Original by Brie.


  1. Beautiful post and lovely recipes. I love how you packed everything. Voting for you!

  2. what a perfect trip for a delicious picnic! I love how you used jars to pack the trifle.

  3. Brie, this is lovely! I love the tips on packing. I'm definitely going to do that in the future. All around beautiful!

  4. yum, yum, yum! i love fried green tomatoes and pickled okra, reminds me of childhood! great job!
    Leila @ My Barbarian Table

  5. wow! Sounds amazing. That sandwich? Seriously inspired.

  6. I'll pass on the okra pops, but fried green tomato BLT?! YES! Perfect place for your picnic, too. Good luck Brie!

  7. Looks Yummy! You got a vote from me!

  8. such a perfectly southern menu. We were both in Georgia for a moment! (I live in Atlanta). Wonderful farm tour.

  9. Raw milk!! I am sooo envious!! lovely fresh picnic Brie!

  10. What a wonderful picnic...and such a great menu :)

  11. I spent some time in this part of the world so it's so easy for me to imagine everything you describe. I love the emphasis on raw milk too. I have been researching and tasting raw milk. I even went to dairy farms in WI. I have an academic question. Your recipe says raw milk, but then it get's heated which turns it into pasteurized milk. So my question is could you mean homogenized milk. Because that's where things get hazy for me. GREG

  12. Greg, I remember your post about going to WI; it's nice you got a taste of what us country folk do with our spare time. ;-) I only purchase raw milk. I do NOT want to encourage anyone to buy homogenized or pasteurized milk. The pudding recipe called for heating the milk to make it firm up; the point of heating was NOT to make it pasteurized or homogenized - just firm pudding. I do not have any recipes that can make pudding with cold, raw milk without any additives. If you've got one, I'd love to have it!

  13. I don't got one... I'm still learning and your generosity of knowledge is sooo appreciated. GREG

  14. What a wonderful post! Looks amazing
    Good luck and all the best :)

  15. OMG. This is the first post I'm saving because I want to make it in its entirety! YUMYUMYUMYUM Your fried green tomatoes look so light and delicious...and that mayo? WOW.

  16. Brie, everything looks delicious! I love the BLT so yummy. I'm on my way to vote. I also have an award for you. If you like to accept it please stop by :)

  17. Congratulation for making to challenge #6!!! You've got my vote again this round! Congrats & Best wishes to making to next round :)

    Have a great week
    jen @

  18. Thank you for sharing! I almost felt like I was at the picnic with you---I would have LOVED to go on the farm tour; reminds me I need to look up the same such thing here in Seattle. Another food lover: Will go and cast my vote for you; best of luck and good job! I know it takes a lot of planning and your picnic looks just great.

  19. Beautiful! That BLT looks fantastic. I think you've inspired me to make my own green tomato BLT.

  20. Catching up on my foodie reading after being in France where I had quite a lot of Brie ;) eautiful post in every way! Glad you're going on to the next round.

  21. Hi Brie, I live in Monticello and can't believe I discovered you through FoodBuzz! Good luck on future rounds, I'll be following your progress! :)


  22. Hi,
    Thanks for sharing this lovely post....
    looks really very tasty and delicious!!!
    Raw Honey

  23. I always like to eat fresh.. Thank god, its amazing. I wish to bookmark your post. Keep on updating like this ever wonder post with us.

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