Home Grown

Something that I have come to recognize about myself is that maybe I am somewhat of a Hippie. No, I don’t eat granola, nor do I Hula-Hoop. However, I do enjoy farm-fresh meats and produce. I like my beef grass-fed (Unless it’s steak-then bring on the corn-fed beef!) I like all kinds of fruits and vegetables, except stewed okra, and the fresher, the better!

So, one thing I am trying to do on our RV adventures is to shop local! Currently, we are staying in Indiana. When I cannot go to a farmers’ market or find a roadside stand, I have found that IGA Supermarkets are the next best thing.

They do not have IGA markets in the big city where I call home! My first encounter with an IGA was in Saratoga, Wyoming. When I was trying to find locally sourced beef, someone told me to try the IGA. I did, and I was not disappointed! Then, on our current adventure to Indiana, we are camped outside of the small town of Remington. Well, Remington has one grocery store, an IGA. So, when we need food, and we are at camp, we go to the IGA.

At the IGA, I have noticed that I have seen signs on some fruits and veggies that say “Homegrown.” The first couple of times, I did not think much about it. But, as I shop at the IGA, I have continued to see locally sourced produce.

Last night after returning from IGA, I did a little research. The cool scoop on the IGA: IGA stands for Independent Grocers Alliance, founded in 1926. Because the stores are Independent Hometown Grocers, they can support the local farmers by selling their goods. And thus, the consumer gets fresh-picked ripe produce and homegrown meat!

Yesterday I bought two fresh ears of corn, a cucumber, and a pound of ground beef. Coupled with what I already had on hand; I created a delicious easy dinner for two or three people. I made a simple macaroni, ground beef, and marinara dish for our main course. (My mom used to call it goulash, even though it wasn’t!) I call it Chili-mac. (But it’s not chili either.) Perhaps I could call it macaroni, ground beef, and tomato sauce?? Or better- Simple Pasta with Marinara and Ground Beef. No matter the name, it is easy and delicious! 

I paired my pasta dish with corn on the cob and sliced cucumber. The cucumber was tasty, and my pasta dish was good. But the corn on the cob stole the show! Sweet and tender-crisp, hot buttered, and on the cob. It was the best ear of corn that I have had in a long time. And this is as it should be. The reason is that everywhere you look in Rural Indiana, you see a cornfield. There is even a cornfield in the middle of Lafayette city. I kid you not!

One might wonder how to cook corn on the cob in an RV. My sister taught me how to microwave corn on the cob. So, that is how I do it. First, I shuck off the outer layers of the husk, leaving only one layer of husk on the ear. Then pop the corn into the Microwave and use the potato setting. Once cooked, shuck off the remaining husks and corn silk, butter, and season with salt and pepper. Super simple and mouth-watering good. Just be sure to have a lot of napkins on hand!

I chopped a medium onion for my Pasta dish and pan-fried it with one-half pound of ground beef, cooking until the meat is brown and the onions are translucent. I then added one 14 oz can of tomato sauce, one teaspoon of garlic, and one teaspoon of dried basil leaves. Meanwhile, on my other burner, I boiled some salted water. Then cook 2 cups of macaroni per the package instructions. When tender, drain the macaroni and combine it with the sauce mixture. Top with Parmesan, and voila, delicious! Bon appetite!

Simple Pasta with Marinara

and Ground Beef

Serves 3-478 Calories Per Serving

Ingredients:

½ Pound Ground Beef

1 medium Onion diced

1-14 oz can of Tomato Sauce

1 Teaspoon Garlic

1 Teaspoon Dried Basil

2 Cups Dry Macaroni, Rotini, or Penne Pasta

1/3 cup Shredded Parmesan Cheese

  1. Scramble ground beef with onion. When meat is brown, and onions are translucent, add tomato sauce, garlic, and basil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, Cook Pasta in salted boiling water according to package directions. Drain when tender.
  3. After the meat mixture has simmered, add the pasta to the meat mixture. Taste test to decide if added salt is needed. Top with Parmesan Cheese. Serve hot.

Microwave Corn on the Cob

Ingredients:

Corn

Butter

Salt and Pepper

  1. Shuck outer husks of the corn Cobs, leaving only the inner layer of husks on each ear.
  2. Microwave corn on Potato Setting in Microwave Oven.
  3. Carefully remove hot ears from the Microwave. Shuck corn, removing all husks corn silk.
  4. Butter corn. Salt and pepper to taste.

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