It promised to be a gorgeous day .. the skies were blue and the sun was shining .. we had an early start so after a light snack of fruit,cookies& juice I gave everyone a canvas tote bag and we piled into the shiny white van ready to start our culinary adventure of Southern Chester County .
With Clint as our driver the ride to Chester County was a smooth one .. I gave a little bit of information to everyone about where we would be going and who we would meet.
Our first stop was a Mushroom farm. This is the largest grower of specialty mushrooms in the US it is run by the 3rd generation family and has been in operation since 1927.. We toured the mushroom houses and our guide gave us fascinating information on how each type of mushroom is grown .. we even got to taste a mushroom straight from the soil ..
At the end of the tour we were able to buy mushrooms of all kinds & everyone took advantage of this great opportunity .. mushroom boxes filled the back of the truck that was following us with ice in coolers to keep our purchases cold !
Next was a visit to a local farm where Jack Hill makes his wonderful concoctions of jams & jellies from fruit grown on his property.. we watched as he and his Amish helper cooked small batches of jam with real sugar to make his award winning jams & jellies .. this retired man whips up the most delicious jellies you will ever taste.. we sampled some and bought lots !
On to a nearby farm where Tom & Barbara run a Sheep Dairy with pasture- raised lamb. They also manage 25 colonies of honeybees & along with fabulous lamb sausage we sampled their wonderful honey and old world cheeses. Tom answered some questions and gave us insight on what it takes to run a small family farm .
Our next stop was a wonderful Boutique winery ... where we sampled some astonishing blends and sampled local artisan cheese & chocolates. This small 7 acre winery is set in Avonadale and run by the same family for 5 generations. All the grapes are harvested by hand to produce some of the areas best wines .
Needing a little nourishment we headed to lunch . We dined in a local restaurant owned by a young couple who uses local produce for some great American dishes .We ate in a private dining room savoring our meal and sharing our enthusiasm for this culinary adventure .
On our last stop of the day we headed into Lancaster County where we were privileged enough to visit a local Amish Dairy farm close to milking time ! We toured the barn and watched as the cows came in from pasture ~ we bought raw milk and brown eggs along with vegetables put up by his wife .. we were followed around by 3 beautiful blue eyed children with bonnets.. it was a real experience.
Join me on my next culinary tour of Southern Chester County .. it will be an experience you will not forget !
I am an optimistic and happy person.. I would rather see life as exciting and challenging and enjoy every minute than dwell on the negative .. I love to cook and have my family around .. big family dinners and celebrations are always held in my home.. I have a huge table 10 feet long ..filled with food and family.. I have learned many of my mom's old recipes and try to recreate many of the dishes I grew up with .. I am teaching my grandsons to cook .. they love it! I have a wonderful,happy, loving relationship with my husband. He supports me in everything I do and is my biggest fan and taste tester.. he loves all things Italian too!
I love to cook, write, eat and laugh .. I wrote a cookbook in 2004.. the title? LIVE,LAUGH,COOK! what else!