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Quote of the Day: Robyn Griggs Lawrence

December 9th, 2012

Preparing food is an ideal way to hone your creative flair and bring sense of beauty into your home. You have to do it every day, anyway – and if you stop to recognize the simple majesty of the objects you bring home in grocery bags, making dinner will be a lot more fun.

Next time you unload the groceries, particularly the produce, do so mindfully. Notice the fine white hairs protecting the carrot’s flesh, the squeaky wax binding the cheese wedge, the chunky shapes or fine straight bands of different pastas. How can you make the most of crisp spring greens, plump August tomatoes, golden fall pumpkins? You can toss them, mash them, and spice them up for consumption, of course, and you can also use them to add seasonal grace to the dining room table.

Robyn Griggs Lawrence (The Wabi-Sabi House: The Japanese Art of Imperfect Beauty)

There’s nothing I love more than heading to the farmers market each week to see what each vendor will have. Fresh sheep’s milk yogurt, honey, cheese, carrots, kale, cabbage, apples and a few other goodies made it into my bags on Friday. To me, it’s all about relishing the fact that time moves forward, seasons change, the sun rises and sets, and food changes as this happens.

Meals shouldn’t be just about eating, they should be about appreciating the distinct flavors of the seasons. The more food I grow in my garden and the more wild foods I learn to gather, the more I appreciate each thing at the height of it’s flavor. The longer I eat seasonally the less I want to eat things that aren’t fresh and at the peak of ripeness. Asparagus picked a few minutes before eating is so much better than some I’ve pulled from the freezer in late November. Not only is the flavor not as good, but it seems wrong to eat it when the skies are gray and the earth is settling in for it’s long winter’s nap. This time of year apples fit the bill better than asparagus.

This doesn’t mean we have to learn to cook new things each season, often we can learn to make one dish and adapt it for different flavors. Crepes are one of those versatile dishes that everyone should learn to make. They’re quick and easy to make and you can stuff them with anything sweet or savory. In June you’ll find them on our plate stuffed with strawberries, in late winter, with kale, eggs, bacon and cheese. You can even use different types of grains to make them even more flavorful!

Yesterday morning we enjoyed homemade crepes of freshly ground wheat flour, eggs from our chickens, milk from a local farm and local butter. Instead of adding water to the recipe I used apple cider since it was in season and my crepes were going to be stuffed with cooked apples. For the filling, I combined apples, more cider, butter, molasses, cinnamon, ginger and allspice. Each crepe was smeared with some sheep’s milk yogurt then stuffed with the apple filling, and chopped crispy walnuts. A little drizzle of maple syrup and a sprinkling of cinnamon topped it off perfectly. The perfect brunch on a saturday in December!

What would you choose as your favorite crepe filling combo?

19 Comments to “Quote of the Day: Robyn Griggs Lawrence”
  1. angie h on December 9, 2012 at 9:33 am

    Sounds delicious! I think you need to post the recipe on eotb! I’ve never eaten or made crepes!

    Reply to angie h's comment

    • Carrie on December 9, 2012 at 8:14 pm

      I second this motion!

      Are you making your crepes on the wood stove? I’m so jealous! My future farmhouse has a wood stove in its future for sure!

      Reply to Carrie's comment

      • Susy on December 9, 2012 at 11:03 pm

        Yep, making the crepes on the wood stove on my flat cast iron skillet, they take a little longer than on my stove. Our woodstove has better head distribution than the little stove that came with the house. There’s no way I could make crepes on the stove that is here currently. Thankfully my real stove is here and waiting to be installed!

        to Susy's comment

  2. kristin @ going country on December 9, 2012 at 9:34 am

    The MiL once made crepes with chickpea flour and cumin for a curried ground lamb filling I made. Topped with yogurt, they were GOOOOD.

    Haven’t made them since, though, since we’ve been butchering our lambs ourselves lately and haven’t had any ground lamb.

    Reply to kristin @ going country's comment

    • Susy on December 9, 2012 at 8:12 pm

      Sounds like a wonderful combo I’m going to have to try sometime!

      Reply to Susy's comment

  3. Nebraska Dave on December 9, 2012 at 9:50 am

    Susy, I have eaten crepes but just like pancakes with maple syrup on them. If I was to stuff a crepe, I would probably think about scrambled eggs, green peppers, onions, and salsa.

    Seasonal eating, to me, was always better in so many more ways than just taste but that alone would be enough reason to do it. It takes away that special anticipation of biting into the first slice of watermelon when it can be bought year round or tasting that first tomato from the vine when several different kinds are waiting for your purchase in the store. Personally, I don’t buy out of season things unless they can’t be grown here in Nebraska. Coffee is one of those things. I’m definitely a “wake up with Folger’s in my cup” kind of guy.

    Have a great food observation day.

    Reply to Nebraska Dave's comment

  4. Joan on December 9, 2012 at 10:19 am

    Dieter makes crepes most Sunday mornings (not today though!). My favorite is slivers of fresh sweet onions (or hot onions if the sweets are gone), a hearty grating of asiago or parmesan, and some freshly grated pepper. Delicious!

    We also like a sprinkling of sugar with a squeeze of lemon, or a creamed spinach, or an apple and blueberry filling. Cinnamon and sugar, maple syrup… Anything is good!

    Reply to Joan's comment

    • Susy on December 9, 2012 at 7:56 pm

      MMM, savory are my favorite as I don’t really have a sweet tooth. Mr Chiots loves apples & cinnamon, so these were for him. Onions & cheese sounds so amazing in a crepe!

      Reply to Susy's comment

  5. Denimflyz on December 9, 2012 at 11:02 am

    Like N Dave, I have fixed crepes with a Tex-Mex flair, with eggs, hash browns, onion, homemade salsa, and ham or bacon. In our area, its hard to find fruit in season, so we have to use what we can get our hands on. I eat with the seasons, again, its hard here, as we do not have farmer’s markets which go all year long. But with planning, you can put up and savor throughout the winter with just a little planning.

    Reply to Denimflyz's comment

  6. whit on December 9, 2012 at 11:42 am

    Your entry today is exactly the type of thing i hope you all will cover in your webisodes! It is a challenge for me still to cook seasonally, although i will never touch a tomato in winter (unless it is canned). :) I’ve been trying to collect recipes that start with a solid foundation, like crepes or egg dishes, that you can switch up with what’s fresh. Crepes is a new one to me. Thanks for the tip.

    We are s-l-o-w-l-y learning to live off our land, and my patience is being put through a huge test with that. To subsized what we produce, we’ve joined an organic, seasonal produce deliverly that focuses on things grown on the West Coast. We have found a raw diary less than a mile down the street for things like diary, honey, and meat.

    Reply to whit's comment

    • Susy on December 9, 2012 at 7:59 pm

      I was thinking that when I made this, I’ll have to try to cover a good recipe that can be adapted seasonally in each episode.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  7. daisy on December 9, 2012 at 12:27 pm

    You are making me drool! Those look so dee-lish! My mom is French, so we grew up eating crepes. So glad you have so many wonderful local ingredients to choose from! I’m discovering more myself everyday.

    Reply to daisy's comment

    • Susy on December 9, 2012 at 8:10 pm

      It’s amazing how many wonderful local things you can find when you start looking!

      Reply to Susy's comment

  8. amber jackson on December 9, 2012 at 12:37 pm

    I like eating local, through my garden, a csa, and the farmers markets. This year we have storage vegetables and some apples and I preserved a bunch of different things. About this time of year I start missing fresh fruit so I will buy oranges etc from the grocery, organic of course. I would like to order a case of different citrus but have not gotten there yet. Maybe next year. They have a farmers market during the winter in Maine?! That’s really nice.

    Reply to amber jackson's comment

    • Susy on December 9, 2012 at 7:59 pm

      There are some winter markets here in Maine, mostly they seem to contain cabbages, cheese, etc.

      I order citrus all winter when it’s at it’s peak. Actually I should be getting a case of delicious grapefruit next week and hopefully some lemons and hopefully some blood oranges.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  9. KimH on December 9, 2012 at 4:08 pm

    Yum.. I sure wish M’honey would appreciate eating like you do.. I personally used to eat very much similar, but the men in my life just seem to steer far from it.

    I grew up eating Crepe Suzette which is is a French dessert consisting of a crêpe with beurre Suzette, a sauce of caramelized sugar and butter, tangerine or orange juice, zest, and Grand Marnier or orange Curaçao liqueur on top, served flambé.
    My mom always made them & they were heavenly.. I’ve not made them in a long long time.. probably 25 years..

    Im sure I’d love a crepe filled with anything.. I never did really like pancakes because I grew up with crepes instead.. though there is a recipe for Swedish Pancakes in my ancient Better Homes & Garden New Cook Book (red checked) that is closer to a crepe than a traditional American pancake that I loved.

    Reply to KimH's comment

    • Susy on December 9, 2012 at 8:11 pm

      That’s funny, Mr Chiots doesn’t have a choice. He’d have to go hungry or fend for himself if he didn’t eat what I made. At first he was skeptical, but now he’s fully on board.

      Reply to Susy's comment

      • KimH on December 10, 2012 at 12:11 pm

        I should say the same thing but I dont.. M’honey is a very spoiled old German American.. and did I mention he’s spoiled? ;)
        It goes both ways though in other ways… at least he does eat all the local organic veggies & grass fed beef i buy.. there, he has no choice. ;) Maybe in another 10 years or so I’ll have him eating further outside the box. Every year I push a little more. ;)

        to KimH's comment

  10. EL on December 13, 2012 at 7:47 pm

    We had sourdough from some friends that we got when I was little. So we grew up eating sourdough bread and having crepes made from the starter at least once a week. It was an easy way to keep the starter going. I think that my father still has the starter, so I should get it and make crepes with it again. The problem is living alone and that it doesn’t take much to feed me.

    Anyway I’ll eat about anything in a crepe, but a lot of times I simply have a good cheddar along with some chives and black pepper. The most awesome crepe-like meal that I have had was at an Ethiopian restaurant where they gave us a bunch of toppings that we ate in sourdough (at least fermented) crepes. Very good!!

    Reply to EL's comment


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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