Let's Chow

Let’s Chow

Locally Sourced Food and Why it Matters @ILFarmFamilies

Buying locally sourced food isn’t just a hip and trendy idea, but rather, it’s a smart and healthy way to give back to your community while also reducing your carbon footprint. By buying produce, meats and more from area farmers you are getting the freshest food possible using the smallest carbon footprint possible while also supporting local farmers who are the backbone of our food economy.

In Illinois, we are blessed to have a large farming community, which makes it possible to enjoy locally sourced food everyday. Last week, I had the opportunity to watch Chef Michael R. Maddox celebrate this fact with a LIVE cooking demonstration. Chef Michael (who incidentally was voted “One of the top 50 Chefs in Chicago” by the Zagat Guide of 2012) is a strong advocate for locally sourced food. Having grown up on a farm, in Princeville, IL, he is accustomed to growing his own vegetables as well as smoking, curing and butchering his own meats. I didn’t grow up on a farm but I’ve been known to butcher the English language and don’t even get me started on my spelling! But, I am one to admire and enjoy great food, which is what brings me to this post.Chef Michael was kind enough to share his delicious food and recipes with me.  Each dish highlights one or more locally sourced ingredients from Illinois.

Bresola scented hangar steak with red onion marmalade

Bresola scented hangar steak with red onion marmalade

Fresh pork

Seared pork tenderloin atop mesclun field greens with cranberries and walnuts

As the holiday season approaches, you might want to consider making one (or more) of these dishes for family, friends or even just yourself! Be sure to stay tuned for next month’s post where I will talk about ways to create thoughtful and delicious gifts using locally gown ingredients. Let’s band together this year to eat healthier and support our local farmers! Find recipes here: Chef_Micheal_Maddox_recipes

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