Saturday, August 28, 2010

New Cheese at the Goose: Kaskaskia

New at the Goose is Kaskaskia, a raw sheep's milk from Illinois' Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery.

Prairie Fruits is the first farmstead cheesery in Illinois. Since 2004, Wes Jarrell and Leslie Cooperband have been milking their own Nubian goats and making fresh and aged cheeses right on the farm.

Not long ago, the couple partnered with a neighboring Amish sheep farm. Eldin Plank and his family raise East Friesian-Lacon sheep sustainably, naturally, and on pasture almost every day of the year.

Kaskaskia--a name with lots of Illinois roots: college, town, river--is one of the raw sheep's milk cheeses possible because of their partnership. Aged, firm, and slightly crystallized--like true Parmigiano Reggiano--the nutty, sharp cheese adds a kick to any dish its grated over. We like taking home a wedge and breaking off pieces, Parm-style, to munch on between sips from a new bottle in the Goose's cellar. Xiloca Garnacha is spicy with a fresh juicy finish, cutting through the salty, savory cheese but leaving us hankering for another bite.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

B is for burger: Chris B dotes over this patty

In our continuing series on blue apron endorsements, Goose staff members are taking turns dishing on some of their favorite foodstuffs at the shop.

For Chris B., there's no better meal between a bun than the Goose's own Goose Burgers. We hand cut beef shoulder from Dave Fischer's black angus, raised all-naturally on open pasture in Jasper, Indiana. The cuts are coarse ground with onion, the smokey ends of the Goose's own bacon, and jalapenos grown just down the road at Big City Farms. "It's everything you'd want on your burger already in your burger," Chris B. says. "I had one last night!"

There's a little nostalgia in Chris B.'s pick this week. "They kinda remind me of the burgers my mom used to make in the summers. Man, those were good," he remembers. But we won't tell you which burger Chris B. prefers today.

Since Goose Burgers are already pattied up, you can make dinner in one easy step: light the grill. The optional step two is getting something to drink to go with them. Chris B. had that part covered. "My roommate had some beer and I brought the Goose Burgers," he says. Aww, sharing...his mom is so proud of her little boy.

The case is stocked with Goose Burgers now, so the lucky folks who come in quick can put them on their menu.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon: from the water to the Goose to you

Captain Tony is no landlubber. A Midwesterner who grew up in the woods, he found home in Alaska on the water. At first guiding Alaskan visitors on hunting, fishing, and flying trips, today Tony runs his own small, hands-on fishing company. His sockeye are delicious because of those three words...own, small, and hands-on.

With a crew of 2, Tony makes day trips into Bristol Bay and deliveries salmon for his customers every day. That's fresh...and a world of difference from the big companies that spend 4 or 5 days on the water, delivering fish that's been on ice for almost a week before it even hits the shore.

Captain Tony is the only captain. He overseas every aspect of getting fresh, tasty sockeye to the Goose. Tony is on the boat, making sure he fishes sustainably and without harm to other species or wildlife. Tony and his processor Mike are the only two guys who prepare the salmon. They're cut and cleaned individually and by hand. Tony also coordinates each delivery, so he knows exactly which fish are coming to Indy and how and when they'll get here.

And we can hardly wait until they arrive on Wednesday (tomorrow!). Chris loves the flavor of these fresh, never frozen sockeye. "They're delicious. It's amazing how the flavors and texture of Tony's salmon can be so rich and wild but delicate and elegant at the same time."

Tony is the owner-fisherman and Chris is the owner-butcher, so these fish are overseen by just two experts. That means the quality is high and the price void of middlemen. Folks who'd like a whole fish can have Chris butcher it any way you'd like for $12/pound. (Headless and cleaned, expect whole fish to weigh around 6-7 pounds. Tell us what you'd like...portioned into 8 oz cuts, one side whole, half ready for the grill and the rest ready for freezing, you name it. Contact us to reserve your fish!) Of course, you don't have to take home a whole fish. Individual steaks or sides are also available so partial cuts are $14.50/pound.

Captain Tony is making a special deliveries to the Goose for a couple weeks, so these sockeye aren't part of the Goose's regular pre-order fish. These beauties will be arriving starting Wednesday and will be available first to folks who place orders. Some cuts may available in the case on a first come, first served basis, too.

Get in line (fishing joke) or email us on the net (fishing joke) to get your fresh catch (no joke).