Food Feature Friday: Gyro

Gyro- a meat sandwich consisting of tomatoes, onion, tzatziki sauce-all wrapped in pita bread. 

Gyros are a greek dish, served in restaurants and kitchens worldwide. Until a few weeks ago, this farm girl had never heard of such a thing.

For lunch one day, I ventured to Anthoninos, an Italian restaurant located on the Hill in St. Louis. My lunch companions quickly ordered Gyro sandwiches and hummus. I am a little embarrassed to admit I am a pretty picky eater. So the Gyro sandwich and hummus were out of my list of choices. I wasn’t in the mood for the typical pizza or pasta (my favorites-and Anthonios has AWESOME pizza), but who said I couldn’t eat just the Gyro meat? So, I tried a salad with Gyro meat. Slightly different from the sandwich contents, basic Gyro meat is beef, pork and lamb. Of those options, I chose lamb for my salad.

The texture of the meat and sweet taste blew my mind. Growing up on my farm, we ate a lot of beef, pork and chicken. Lamb was a foreign concept. Luckily it is no longer. I couldn’t get enough of my salad. It might have been the best leafy goodness I have consumed in a long time. In minutes, I had eaten all on my plate.

That’s why I had to share this word. Mind you, I haven’t actually ate the sandwich. But the meat is where it’s at as far as I am concerned. Definitely Agri-Word worthy. Will I be brave enough to try the Gyro next?

I will have to think about that one. Happy Friday everyone!

Food Feature Saturday

Since I didn’t have anything exciting to really post about Friday, I didn’t post anything.

Sorry loyal followers.

However, I did fight to visit the famous farmer’s market in Soulard on Saturday. It is one huge place!

They had EVERYTHING from fresh cherries and garden-grown broccoli, to home-grown beef and home-made pastas (St. Louis has a really great Italian area).

It all looked so good, I might have purchased some yummy sweetcorn and a watermelon…

What’s the word? You might have guessed. It’s Farmer’s Market.

Since there really is no definition of a farmer’s market on Webster, we will combine the two with a basic mathematical theory.

Farmer + Market = Farmer’s Market. 

Farmer- person who cultivates land or crops or raises animals.

Market- A public place where a market is held; especially : a place where provisions are sold at wholesale or a retail establishment usually of a specified kind.

Going to the farmer’s market is tradition. Growing up, our small North Missouri town had folks who would set up stands by the courthouse on the square and sell sweet corn, melons and sometimes jams and jellies. However, the Soulard market was much bigger than the one at home. Much, much bigger.

It is a three-day market which begins on Wednesday and runs through Saturday. I caught the tail-end of the market and there were still several vendors. I bought my corn and watermelon both for $5, which is a great deal. Grocery stores in Mo usually charge $5 for the watermelon alone.

Needless to say, I will be going back. Next time for some peaches and broccoli.

However, the Soulard market isn’t the only one in St. Louis. There are several in the area. I went to the Kirkwood market a few weeks ago and found the biggest blackberries I have seen in awhile. Blackberries taste really yummy in the summer too, you know.

Aside from the great selection of produce, a farmer’s market is a great place to meet the folks who raised the food. They can answer questions about how it is grown, where they bought the seeds and how long it took to harvest the sweet corn on the shelf.

Agri-Word wants to know if you like going to the farmer’s market and why? Share and your responses could be featured in next week’s Food Feature Friday.

Food Feature Friday

On behalf of 4th of July week and family traditions, Watermelon is the food word of the day.

Watermelon- The large melonlike fruit of a plant of the gourd family, with smooth green skin, red pulp, and watery juice.

Watermelon

Watermelons are one of my favorite summer foods (maybe of all time). I enjoyed this watermelon on the 4th of July.

Watermelon makes me think of my grandparents. They are the reason I am so crazy about the fruit. We always eat it when I visit in the summer. They know how to pick good ones, too.

At 9 a.m. my grandpa will say, “let’s go eat watermelon.” We will go out to the fridge in the garage and grandma will cut up the watermelon into fourths. We will sit outside in chairs and eat as much as we want. Buck, the old yellow lab used to eat the leftover rinds. Those were the best times.

Nonetheless, it’s a tradition in that same family to eat watermelon and fried catfish on the 4th of July, and sadly, I didn’t make it home to indulge. However, my grandparents sent me back with a nice one before I left the farm on Sunday (above).

I am glad it tastes pretty good. I am also thankful there will be more to come. Hopefully my watermelon tapping skills aren’t too rusty.

Do you have a favorite, traditional summer food? Agri-Word would like to hear from you and you might just be featured in an upcoming “Food Feature Friday.”

May is Beef Month

Burgers, Brats and even a nice steak would be a great addition to any meal this May, because May is National Beef Month.This is a time when Beef producers take an extra minute to talk to folks about the healthy benefits of eating beef.

Now, when it comes to eating meat, I really love pork and chicken. However, days like today, when it is really warm outside and grilling is underway, I crave a burger or steak.

Naturally, I took advantage of the Missouri Legacy Beef booth on MU’s campus for a grilled burger. It hit the spot! It also gave me energy to be productive with my school work.

I looked it up online today, and cattlemen say beef provides ZIP to fuel our bodies.

Zinc

Iron

Protein

No wonder why I was so energized! There are a lot of vitamins in a serving of beef. Now if it could only energize me through another week of school…

Gardening

Due to the warm weather, defining garden seems necessary. Webster has three ways to define the word. 

Garden plot of ground where herbs, fruits, flowers, or vegetables are cultivated: A rich well-cultivated region, and a container planted with usually a variety of small plants.

I was in North Missouri this week and I played around the farm. The farm is doing so well for an early spring. In fact, it’s been so nice that my mother took time Saturday to work in her garden. This is no ordinary, small garden. When my mother gardens, she goes to town.

Here is what she starts with every year. Do you see all of the weeds growing?

After she plants what she wants in the garden, she waits for it to grow. By mid-summer the garden is filled with wildflowers and some produce. There is some thyme, lavender and mint herbs, too.

Having a garden like this takes a lot of work. While I was growing up, my mother strived worked in her garden (my sibling and I too) all summer pulling weeds, watering flowers and cleaning out the garden pond.

Despite all of the work, this garden is my mother’s love and passion. She laid the brick patio from bricks she found in an old farm house up the road. We gathered at least 100 stones from the side of the road for the pathway you see, and she re-painted an old farm outhouse for her potting shed.

To be honest, I was never a fan of working in the garden, but as I get older I really appreciate all of the hard work that goes into having that area to grow food and flowers.

Have you noticed how gardens are becoming more popular these days? Folks garden for many reasons. Some do it to learn how their food is grown and some people garden just because it’s relaxing. People like to talk about their gardens, too. One Montana farm gal shares her experiences gardening in a blog.

There are also many different kinds of gardens. There are big gardens and little gardens (I even consider crop farming a form of large scale gardening). Gardens for food or just wildflowers. Gardens that use natural fertilizer or store-bought. Round-up or non. The possibilities are endless.

Do you garden? If so, what do you grow? Agri-Word would like you to share pictures of your garden or field during planting time and a little story.

A Farm Girl’s Passion

Agriculture. That’s the heart and soul behind what sparked my interest in creating the Agri-Word blog site.

I have wanted to create a site like this for some time and I am tickled to have an opportunity to do so as part of a senior capstone project.

Let me begin by saying…

I am fascinated with agriculture.Growing up on a smaller farm in North Missouri, I am very passionate about what I do as a journalist and I hope I can use this blog as a way to better understand your feelings about agriculture as we embrace new technology and a growing world population in the years to come. Agriculture is an industry so diverse and large that it can create an interesting conversation about global food, fiber and fuel production. This is part one of this blog. These posts will reflect ag in the news-both local, national and worldwide. I will observe fellow agriculture journalists and non-agriculture journalists in the stories they produce.

The other part of this blog will define agriculture words.

Agriculture also has a lot of lingo. The industry has a language that is sometimes confusing to the everyday non-agriculturalist. Even farm kids like myself have a difficulty understanding a word or two. So, it is my goal to dissect one agriculture word every week to hopefully gain a stronger understanding of how people define agriculture large and small scale.

Word examples include anything from organic to no-till farming. We can look at easy ways to get agriculture news as well.

What I plan to do…

I want to get a feel for the future of agriculture through your eyes. Tell me what you think, how you define a word and where you would like to see change in agriculture reporting or industry.

So that, my blogging friends-in a nutshell-is this new blog. I look forward to having some great conversations going into this year.