Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The End

This July world famous Spanish (Catalonian, actually) chef Ferran Adria is going to close El Bulli --  considered by some to be the best restaurant in the world.  If he can do that,  then I can stop blogging on Cook Out of the Box.  Which is what I am going to do. After today.

Sometimes creative people just need to set off in a new direction.  I can't help it.  I'm a Gemini.

Now now.  No whining.  It's not so bad.  I know there are a few of you out there who will go into a little withdrawal, and I love you for that.  But you will get over this.  You will find comfort in the arms of one of the zillion other food bloggers and cookbook authors who preach the gospel of cooking from scratch with fresh, organic and local foods.  Also, I know there will be several people from the farm, including Jack's wife Jenni, who will be writing several times a week on the farm website with new ideas and a fresh perspective on the food in your box. Here is the link:
I am not going to totally disappear.  You will still be able to e mail me at with your food questions or comments.  Think of me as Featherstone Farm's own Ann Landers, except I won't be advising you on how to deal with annoying neighbors,  rude in-laws or errant spouses.  I'll just be providing information, advice and encouragement concerning food and cooking to people who take the time to e mail me.   And who knows?  Cooking may help you solve other problems.  I like to think that many human troubles would go away or at least be more bearable in the presence of regular home cooked, nutritious and tasty meals.

I also will continue to show up at Featherstone events at the farm to do the occasional food demonstration.  I will be at the Fall Harvest party August 27 and hope to see you there.    My husband Frank, rhubarb farmer and gardener extraordinaire, will be joining me and I promise an entertaining and educational session.  Maybe I can talk him into showing off his famous knife sharpening skills as an added bonus.

Finally, I will be commenting occasionally on the farm's Facebook page and I hope you do, too.  I would love to see some pictures of the meals you make at home.  They do not need to be perfect or fancy.  Just real.  I would also love to see some pictures of happy children eating vegetables.  We have a lot of work to do to stamp out vegetable prejudice in this country.  (I call it vegotry - for vegetable bigotry.   Here is my post on that, titled "Broccoli is not a punishment" )  Let's give Michelle Obama a hand, okay?  She can't solve the horrible epidemic of childhood obesity all by herself, you know. 

And don't forget - every single blog post that I have written since Jan 17, 2010 is archived at  There are 180 out there in the cloud, counting this one.  These posts are not going anywhere.  Virtually all of them are just as relevant and useful now as they were when I wrote them.  Bok Choy, for example,  has not changed since last year.  My instructions on how to make homemade yogurt or hollandaise sauce are still pretty darn good.   You can even bookmark it as a favorite and read it every so often on a rainy day.  

I would like to thank Jack Hedin,  farmer in chief at Featherstone Farm, for giving me the opportunity to write about food - in particular about making meals from scratch at home using organic vegetables from the Featherstone Farm CSA box.  He and I agree that good farmers need good cooks.  Featherstone Farm grows some of the most beautiful vegetables anywhere -- but the farm would have no business plan without people who care how food is produced and who are willing to wash and dry their own lettuce, peel and chop their garlic and onions, stir fry some broccoli or carrots and roast a chicken or make a pot of soup once in a while.

I also would like to thank Margaret Marshall, the CSA manager, for her patience, support and good humor.  And all the farm staff who work so hard to plant, tend, harvest, pack and transport good food. 

Finally, I would like to thank you - CSA members and home cooks everywhere.  You are saving the world one meal at a time.  God bless you in your labors.  I have one parting request -  please keep cooking and share your knowledge, enthusiasm and experience with a child or two or three.  If our nation's children grow up knowing little or nothing about how to properly feed themselves, we haven't done our job now have we?


  1. We'll miss you on these pages. I know I'll keep coming back to the archives for those "Inspiration" posts! And I hope I can help out everyone a little by continuing to blog my own Featherstone box adventures at the Messy Apron.

  2. will miss your weekly! thanks for the practical wisdom and the LAUGHS!

  3. I'm going to miss you Peggy. I said it on the facebook page, but you helped me learn to love to cook. Your practical advice calms me and encourages me and to try new things in the kitchen. My husband will definitely agree. A common question in our kitchen is, "What would Peggy suggest?" I've grown from following your weekly recipes to a T, to being able to assemble a weekly plan in my head as I open my CSA box and see all the yummy veggies. I regularly go back into your blog to find recipe's or posts on how to wash/store my veggies. Mise-en-place has practically saved my sanity. I'm not afraid to blanch anymore. We eat less meat and more veggies. The list could go on. I will do my best to pay it forward by bringing healthy home-cooked food with plenty of veggies to my family and especially all the little ones in my life. Thanks so much, Peggy. Let's keep in touch!

  4. While I didn't catch all the blogs, I've enjoy checking out various postings and appreciated all the info, advice, commentary as I've learned a bit more about some of the 'lesser' known veggies (spoken by someone who, like many, grew up with frozen/canned corn, peas, carrots, green beans and that was it!) which I've grown to enjoy and appreciate.

    Happy trails!

  5. Thank you and good luck!

  6. aw, it was fun while it lasted. i love your posts (stories alongside the recipes), and had fun meeting you last fall. at least we have the archives. thanks a lot for doing this, Peggy!

  7. Thank you for taking the time to share your kitchen with us. I never had the time to keep up with all of your prior posts, but will still be back often looking for ideas.


  8. Oh, Peggy. I remember sitting in your kitchen and listening to you hatch "Cook Out Of The Box." Thank you for all your hard work and good humor, and for being a passionate, in-the-dirt guide to so many of us. I will continue to lean on you for cooking advice. And I will think of you tomorrow when I broil my brussel sprouts for lunch.
    Toasting you from KC,

  9. Peggy,

    I just printed your recipe for small batch pickled beets and came to this site with the address posted. Was sorry to see that you stopped posting but am happy your site with all of its info is still here. I'm sorry I didn't happen on it until today. I'm trying the recipe tonight. Thankyou.


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