Tag Archives: Got to be NC

Carolina Poutine with Pulled Pork

Did you say poutine? Yes, yes! This is your all local poutine inspired by the abundance that North Carolina offers. I am receiving compensation from the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to raise awareness about purchasing pork at NC farmer’s markets. All opinions and content are my own.

IMG_7515Every once in a while a great opportunity comes along and you get a little more bang for your buck when it comes to being a cheerleader for all things local–you get a whole TEAM of cheerleaders. I’ve partnered with the NC Department of Agriculture’s Got to be NC program along with bloggers across the state, to highlight some of our local farmers. Bloggers like me, who love local goodness (I’ll call them my SQUAD), are shopping at their local NC farmer’s market, buying the ingredients for a meal and sharing the recipe with folks like you. We’ve got chicken and pork coming at you. I’ll share links to those at the end of this post.

My farm is Mill River Farm in Mount Airy. I’m actually familiar with farmers, Kim and Steve, as I subscribed to a CSA with them a few years back. Such quality meat and produce!  I looked forward to what would be in my box every Saturday when I picked it up from the Winston-Salem Fairgrounds Farmer’s Market.  market - booth2

Kim and Steve have an abundant farm and they sell pork products such as bacon, pork belly, pork butt and loin, chicken, grass-fed beef, eggs, produce of all varieties like lettuce, kale, peas, beets, sweet potatoes, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage and I could go on and on. You can visit them at the farm (details here) or at the Fairgrounds Farmer’s Market, where you can speak to them directly and find out more about how they raise their animals and grow produce that you can feel so great about.  They’re both super knowledgeable and enjoy sharing what they do. Kim even has a cookbook called Cook Like a Farmer .  It’s full of great recipes. The thing that we don’t want you to forget is: When you visit your North Carolina farmer’s market, don’t forget the meat!

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When I saw Kim and Steve, they weren’t in their traditional digs inside the farmer’s market since the fair was in town. But they had enough yumminess on hand for me to purchase the main ingredients for my #GotToBeNCPork Carolina Poutine.  Poutine? Yeah, baby! Poutine is typically french fries and cheese curds with a rich brown gravy.  If you’ve had it, you know it’s like the guiltiest pleasure ever. Mine is a riff on that.

Let’s take a look at my truly local…

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Carolina Poutine with GotToBeNCPork
Serves 2-4

2-4 Sweet Potatoes (count on about one per person), preferably #gottobeNC
Pulled pork (from a 2-3 pound #GotToBeNCPork butt or shoulder)
Ashe County Cheese Curds
BBQ Sauce of your choice (I used a blend of chipotle sauce with some Eastern NC sauce I had on hand)

To prepare the pork: Give the pork a good liberal rub of your choice of seasoning plus plenty of salt and pepper. If you’re able, grill the pork on all sides. I don’t have a smoker, so I let my grill and my slow cooker do the work for me. Get it good and browned on all sides, then place in the slow cooker with about 1 1/2 cups of water or broth (beer or a mixture of bbq sauce and water is fine too–you just want a flavorful liquid). Allow to cook on low for 4-6 hours.  Once tender and falling apart, remove from cooker and shred it, baby.

Cut your NC Sweet Taters into fry-sized sticks. Coat with oil (I used avocado oil, but you can use whatever you have on hand) and sprinkle with smoked paprika (optional), salt and pepper. Bake at 400-degrees until lightly browned and crispy, about 30 minutes.

Just before you remove the fries from the oven, heat up the sauce. I simply used my favorite Sam Jones Eastern NC style sauce and added some smoky chipotles to it.  You will want that sauce to be PIPING hot so that it can melt the cheese curds as it hits them.

On a platter or pan, place the crispy sweet potato fries in heaping pile. Top with shredded pork, cheese curds and drizzle the sauce over the top. The sauce should be hot enough to start melting the cheese curds. If not, it’s okay to blast it under the broiler until they appear to be just melting.

Garnish with chopped green onions and enjoy!

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I want you to know that this delicious and fun recipe is simply a guide. If you can slow cook your meat on a smoker, so much the better. As I said before, I don’t have a smoker but I do have the grill and a slow cooker. I get a really good crust by grilling on high, though I keep an eye on it as the fat and any sugar on the outside can cause it to light up. You can also bypass the slow cooker and modify by cooking on a low heat in the oven for 2 1/2-3 hours. The sauce is also up to you. A mole would be amazing with those sweet potatoes. Play around with your flavors and have fun!

So… what makes it poutine? To a purist, is it still poutine if it doesn’t have real gravy but rather a sauce?

I’m not here to debate that. I just do know this poutine delicious party, nosh, use-up-leftovers kind of fare that tastes great with a NC craft beer. Support your local farmers at your local market. I’ve got links below to plenty of convenient locations and some of the best pork in North Carolina.

PS: You are going to have plenty of pork leftover for another poutine, tacos, breakfast…or a good ol’ BBQ plate.

Here’s a list of the pork and chicken from my squad:

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Got To Be NC Pork at Your Local NC Farmers Market

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Watch Heidi’s video!

Got to Be NC Chicken at your NC Farmers Market

 

We’re on the Rock & a new Chef’s Table

Foodies!

We have moved.

We have followed our hearts and our dream of living in the absolutely stunning North Carolina mountains. Specifically right up near Banner Elk. And man oh man, is it beee-uuuu-teeee-ful!

And seriously, I’ll explain it all later but the most important thing right now is to let you know that we have jumped right in and we’re kicking off this new journey in life with another Chef’s Table...this one with Chef Sam Ratchford of Vidalia Restaurant and Wine Bar. 

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I met Chef Sam a few years ago when he walked away with the coveted Red Chef’s Jacket at Competition Dining in Winston-Salem. I’ve eaten at his restaurant too, which is why it’s so obvious that we’d want to inaugural Rockfoodies Chef’s Table to be at Vidalia, where Sam and his wife, Alyce, do classic southern dishes with a twist. And their dedication to local farms is impressive.

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Here’s where you can get your tickets! Seating is limited and we look forward to seeing you there!

PS: I promise a blog  post about the move and why we did it and the house that was supposed to be THE house and our kitchen update (which is about to happen, along with getting a pantry) is coming soon!

XOXO

 

Get Your Taste & See NC Box with Coupon Code!

Hey, foodies!

You know fun it is to go to local markets, boutiques and shops and see all the yummy, local provisions? If only there was a way to see AND taste or taste and see. Well, there’s a new company, based right here in North Carolina that is giving us all a chance to bring home a box of North Carolina goodness. You pick your city and it’s delivered right to your door.

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My friend, Shayla, launched Taste and See NC earlier this year as a way to highlight local makers with a gift box of artisan food products from our fair cities. There’s a Winston-Salem box, a Durham Box, Raleigh, Charlotte, Asheville. You get the idea. Shayna reached out to the foodies and asked us if we wanted a box (uh…yes, Shayla, yes!) and let us choose our city. I was familiar with some of Asheville and all of Winston-Salem’s box. I haven’t had the benefit of enjoying a whole lot of Durham goodies, even though it’s one of the top Southern food towns. So Shayna sent me a Durham box and I just had to show you how cute and fun it is. Of course, I’ve tried all of these items and will be sharing them with you here.

Look! It was a like a little present from Tiffany. Only better. Yeah I said that (No thanks to the post office for getting it all dirty).

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Inside that Carolina Blue box was a selection from some of the finest makers in the Bull City:

Big Spoon Roasters: Apricot and Pepita Bar
Chocked full of real ingredients. I started noshing on this little bar so quickly that I forgot to snap a pic. Oops! But I did remember later to photograph this bar as a topping to my smoothie bowl. It was chewy and lightly sweet and satisfying. On a side note, you can find Big Spoon in the Triad (including Whole Foods) and all over the region as they are super popular with their nut butters. It was fun to see they’ve gotten into food bars for a quick, healthy snack. Big Spoon is known for their sustainable practices including supporting our NC Peanut Farmers. IMG_8466

Sangha Tea: Ginger Peach Black Tea
As I write this, I’m fearing I’m catching the microfoodies’ colds. So this tea is very warm and soothing. This tea is smells and tastes exactly as its name. It’s gingery. It’s peachy and wonderful.

Ello Raw: Cinnamon Sugar Donut Bites
Another healthy grab and go option, these little grain-free bites are made with raw, organic superfood ingredients.

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Durham Toffee: 
Man, oh man. This toffee though. Fortunately it made it to me without getting all melted in the summer heat. This toffee is melt in your mouth, chewy, buttery deliciousness topped with the crunch of almonds. I’m going to miss it when it’s gone. It won’t be long now either.

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Double M Bakeshop:
Shhhh…don’t tell mr. foodie that there’s another nut butter in the domicile. He already shakes his head in disbelief. I have an entire pantry shelf devoted to nut butters (cashew, almond, flax and chia, peanut x 4, mixed nut)  and they are even stacked one on top of another. It’s almost embarrassing. Proudly, Double M now sits among its lower class peers. The peanut butter is all natural, with a little coconut oil and an ever so light lacing of honey for some sweetness. It’s a great blend of a little sweet, a little salty and the little girl who only eats peanut butter when she has to is Double M’s newest fan. On a bagel or with some crackers? Yes, please. Drizzled on a smoothie bowl? Done and done.

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So if you’re in, near or from one of these hometowns, they make a fun gift for yourself and especially for friends and family, to give them a taste of the local flavor. All City Boxes are $40. Find out more here.  City Boxes will get updated as well.

In December, Taste and See NC will begin offering a quarterly themed subscription box which will feature seven to ten NC food items. It might be a pantry theme or a chocolate theme, but you can bet it will be delicious. You can still order the City Boxes to sample the program or to give as a gift. Sign up for your quarterly subscription here. Get $5 OFF with the coupon code TRIADFOODIE

I also wanted to point out something about Taste and See…and Shayla didn’t ask me to tell you this, but it’s so worth knowing. Approximately 160,000 of North Carolina’s citizens receive emergency food assistance in any given week. One in four children live in food insecure households. You can help with your quarterly subscription.  A percentage from the sales of all quarterly subscriptions will support a NC-based charity specifically focused on feeding children in food insecure areas.  These NC makers are already doing their part by creating healthy, real food from our own state and supporting the farmers here. Now you can help Taste and See bring it full circle by enjoying your quarterly box or gifting them or a City Box to friends.

Enjoy these makers, foodies and don’t forget your coupon code!

 

 

foodie b’eat: Competition Dining Battle of Champions Tickets!

bef7ffe7809952e01eb20dec_1220x1220Foodies, you know I ain’t shy about how much I love Got To Be NC Competition Dining. The Battle of The Champions takes place in mid-November and tickets are on sale now! It’s a foodie lovers dream..five nights of the state’s best, battling it out for the ultimate prize of Best in the State.

For information and tickets, click here. You can choose the dinner you want, if tickets are still available that is…

Representing us locally is Chef James Patterson and team Culinary Crushers from Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro. They take on Team Egg Heads from Another Broken Egg Cafe in Durham.

Their prelim battle is November 11. You can get tickets for that round here. 

Here’s the rest of the lineup….

Competing in the second preliminary round of the 2016 Battle of Champions series   Saturday, November 12, 2016

Team Ceviche’s  Wilmington Series Champs vs Team Vidalia Boom Winston-Salem Series Champs

Competing in the first semi-final round of the 2016 Battle of Champions series  Sunday, November 13, 2016

Team Radical Range Riders  Charlotte Champs vs Team Mirepoix   Raleigh Champs

The Second Semi-Final Round for the 2016 GotToBeNc Competition Dining Battle of Champions will take place on  Friday Nov 18

The winners of the November 11 Battle and the winners of the November 12 Battle vye for the remaining spot in the Battle of Champions Finale. 

The 2016 GotToBeNC Competition DIning Battle of Champions Finale takes place   Sunday, November 20, 2016 

It all happens on the campus of NC State at the Dorothy & Roy Park Alumni Center. Tickets prelim and semi-final events are $119 plus tax/service fee and the Championship is $139 plus tax/service fee. Ticket price does not include beverages.

Grab a loved one and your friends to pull for your favorite. You’ll walk away completely full and impressed and loving what these chefs do with local, seasonal ingredients. It’s a blast. It’s a locavore’s dream and the fellowship over food…it’s kind of indescribable.  We hope we see you!

 

 

Cackalacky Giveaway!

If you live in Nor’ Cackalacky, you’ve probably heard of Cackalacky. Heck even if you live farther away, you might have heard of this amazing NC-based company with its delicious sauces and peanuts. They do just a few things. But that’s what makes them so stupendous. This Siler City-based company does those things and they do them very well.

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What could be under here?? Revealing the prize package! 

The Cackalacky Sweet Cheerwine BBQ Sauce is a legend unto itself.  It  was a “favorite thing” a few years ago…you can read about it here. Add that to another zingy sauce made from Sweet Potatoes. They even have their own eponymously named beer, brewed by Full Steam Brewery. It’s a wonderful ginger-spiced pale ale that’s great with all things grilled and party. There’s also Cackalacky Spiced Peanuts made similarly to the Spicy sauce (they are QUITE spicy-mmmmm) and now….the Beer-B-Q Peanuts…Jumbo-sized peanuts with a hint of beer and BBQ. I’ve been waiting several weeks for these little legumes to make their appearance at my local Lowes Foods. Getting a little impatient with my store, I reached out to the folks at Cackalacky and they sent me a prize pack for a lucky winner (and a taste for me)! Thanks, friends!

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A glimpse of the prize pack with one of those nuts being for “research purposes by me.” 

By the way, the Beer-B-Q nuts are utterly fantastic. They are sweet and savory with a bit of a kick and hint of beer. They are so good just for snacking but I bet they’d be great in a salad too.

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In the prize pack, a couple of the new Beer-B-Q nuts, a large bottle of the Cackalacky Cheerwine Sweet Sauce, and some swaggy items you’ll love, like a souvenir glass, frisbee, bumper stickers to proclaim your fandom and some coozies. Fun!

Comment below follow us on Facebook and reply on your favorite way to enjoy anything Cackalacky. Tag a friend and share the post too. At the end of next week, we’ll draw a winner. And then we’ll arrange a way to get your winnings to you. 🙂

And stay tuned for the holidays. I have a feeling these nuts and maybe another Cackalacky item might make it on the 2016 triadfoodies Holiday Gift Guide. And you’ll want to see how to get your hands on that!

You can find Cackalacky in many local grocery stores. If you’re in NC, just check out the “local” section.

Cheers!