Border Crossing (Ely Farm and Rouget)

Ely's cheeseI ran off to Pennsylvania for the day late last week.  My friend Carolyn and I started the day at Washington Crossing Historic Park, where we watched the Revolutionary War movie about the Christmas day crossing (with re-enactors, of course) and gazed at their copy of Emanuel Leutze’s painting, George Washington Crossing the Delaware.  The Park’s website has a great commentary on the painting, which is a highly romanticized version of what it must have really been like.

Then we found our way to the Ely Farm Store near Newtown.  I’d always heard they have great pork products (and other meats, too), so I bought breakfast sausage, pork belly (thanks for the tip Dave!), and St. Louis style ribs. And I can never resist farm eggs. 

I have yet to cook any of that (except for eggs), but also bought one of the three raw cow’s milk cheeses they make, pictured here.  This is called Washington Crossing, and it hints of Parmesan, they say, although I also notice a whiff of Swiss in the flavor, and you’ll notice it does have small holes.  (The photo is out of focus, but I like the painterly saturated colors.)  Their other two cheeses, Aldan’s Blessing and Makefield,  sampled in the store, were also good. 

The fruit you see here is from (surprise!) ShopRite in Montgomery – good Concord grapes (seeds and all) and cape gooseberries, which I’d always wanted to try.  The latter come wraped in a husk and have a sticky coating, just like tomatillos.  Sweet and slightly puckery.

Then we went into Newtown for lunch, trying the country French restaurant, Rouget, reviewed last December by my colleague, Antoinette Buckley, who gave it a “very good” (missing from the review.)  Our lunches were actually downright excellent!  Velvety cream of cauliflower soup with truffle oil, super-fresh salad, an amazing French-style crabcake (held together by what seemed to be soufflé or custard), beef a la mode which sent Carolyn, the knowledgeable Francophile, straight to heaven, and for desserts, a cute pistachio cupcake with buttercream frosting piped on, and my own warm white chocolate bread pudding, light as air, with Amaretto sauce.  Lunch was a three course prix fixe, $19.95, and don’t waste a minute, just get yourself over there!

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