Food of the Hive-Mind

Hive-Mind, Gabrielle Myers, organic farm, memoir, Tip Top Farm, Laura Trent

To Purchase Hive-Mind click on cover

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excerpt from Hive-Mind
by Gabrielle Myers

“When I go into the kitchen, the sun’s started to angle itself at Mount Vaca. The golden light casts a reddish filter on my knife work as I thinly slice the halibut filet, fish so fresh the white flesh looks slightly blue and feels sturdy under my knife. After I cut the halibut into tiny cubes, I place it in a stainless steel bowl on top of an ice bag, grate a pinch of lemon zest, sprinkle sea salt and mix in a good amount of olive oil. All the time I maneuver around the kitchen’s gravel floor and awkward cutting boards that jut over the table at weird angles….

Baker walks across the herb circle to the kitchen; her leg brushes a tarragon plant the size of a small citrus tree.

We each do our bit of tidying, and set the table. Gina arrives smiling, flush and tan from her day in our fields. I begin to disk the okra with my sharpest knife. I gently mix the tartare and arrange a thin circular layer on each plate. I distribute five disks of okra on each circle, drizzle extra virgin olive oil over the whole plate and sprinkle wild fennel pollen that I harvested near Lake Berryessa last weekend over the tartare.

Tartare: beef, lamb, tuna, halibut; all I have to do is cut, put sea salt on, pair it with a good olive oil and garnish. The tender fragile quality of the meat or fish plays against the texture present in each bite. Tartare was my favorite dish to serve at Oliveto. We’d fry capers until they were stiff star-like flowers, or take nasturtium petals and dot them over eye of round, ground and moist with oil so the dish looked like a Monet painting…

To purchase Hive-Mind, click on the title.

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