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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

Kinfolk "The Art of Camp Cooking", Nashville, homemade s'mores fixins with Olive & Sinclair Chocolate

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

Toward what end should gathering tend? We all know: to eat well, to dissolve & howl in aching fits of laughter, and to feel less alien, to find some silken strand that extends through the ether from our belly to the belly of another. We’re reflected more accurately in the eyes of friends; we find grace for ourselves in their company. That’s the virtue of a good supper: to create an experience that gives grace, one that nourishes and restores your guests both physically & mentally, and it was towards this end that the Kinfolk camp cooking workshop Rebekka, Hannah, and I hosted in Nashville happily tended.

Two pretty girls sat out back shucking corn in gingham & lace, braids and a straw hat. Hot coals smoldered. Golden marrow pooled beside thick center cut bones on a screamingly hot tray over gray coals. The sunset flesh of peaches & figs caramelized on the grill, and we all surrendered our busy & took an evening to celebrate nothing but evenings, good food, fire, and each other.

We shared in all that late summer in Tennessee lavishes from heirloom purple okra to silver queen corn to green zebra tomatoes, cooked over an open fire, and ended up not only connected to each other but to generations of people who’ve done what we were doing before: telling our stories—our nonsense, secrets, heartache, and epiphanies—around the embers, being woven into the same tapestry under the aimless ashes and frightfully distant stars.

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

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©Hannah Messinger

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

tennessee heirloom tomatoes

The Art of Camp Cooking from Rebekka Seale on Vimeo.

This is what I remind myself of when I start to strain, when I fret, when I want things to be perfect. Because who is that for? Is it because I want to serve or because it serves me? It is, unfortunately, the latter. A good host lays down her ego, let’s wrinkles and crumbs go, and puts her guest’s delight over her own desire for anything to be just so. Kindness is the great conductor. A gathering in its name will be symphonic. That’s the beautiful magic of the way the world is stitched, and even something as simple as the anatomy of a great dinner party is written into the-way-things-are. So long as your end is to delight, nourish, and connect, you & yours will sit together long after the table has been cleared, one sated belly connected to another.

Over the course of that simple evening, I kept my place in the kitchen and over the grill while everyone around me filled in the blanks. Our valiant menfolk (Patrick can be observed serving chicken livers he wouldn’t dare eat!) & dear friend Sarah pitched in doing a great deal of the serving, and a million thanks to Abraham & Susan Rowe and Hannah for both letting me use so much of their gorgeous photography since I was too busy shredding meat with my bare hands, serving, & burning the ever-loving bejesus out of myself to take photos during the day.

We shared supper around picnic tables rambling with wildflowers and herbs foraged & arranged by Ruthie Lindsey Design with the help of Makers Workshop, and the place settings were simple & classic: white organic dinnerware c/o West Elm along with some of their chambray napkins & a beautiful menu designed by Rebekka.

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

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©Hannah Messinger

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

a Kinfolk gathering: the art of camp cooking, nashville

a Kinfolk gathering: the art of camp cooking, nashville

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

The evening began with everyone making herbal fire starters out of dried lavender & garden herbs, and afterwards, everyone gathered around the firepit while Rebekka demonstrated how to bake an apple pie in a cast iron pot with nothing but hot embers. It was gorgeous: after dinner the lid was pulled off to reveal the perfect flaky piecrust with hot, gooey spiced apples beneath it. Who knew! Next time I go camping, pie is on the menu. Yes.

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

After the demonstration we started the meal with sticky grilled peaches & figs doused with local sourwood honey, a beautiful cheese plate from The Bloomy Rind (a smart little cheese shop inside of Porter Road Butchers in East Nashville with an impeccable selection, knowledgeable mongers, and plenty of local selection—the best); homemade spicy pickled fennel, Himalayan cucumbers, & wax beans (I use this pickling spice recipe + white vinegar & honey); and a platter of grilled bone marrow with sea smoke salt from the Old Salt Merchants.

Dinner consisted of simple passed dishes: thick sliced heirloom tomatoes with herbed salt; skewers of grilled chicken livers with a sorghum “yakitori” glaze & pickled Vidalia onions; a massive turnip green salad with roasted okra, grilled corn, spicy buttermilk cornbread croutons, and a thick buttermilk herb dressing (recipe for the dressing below & you can find the recipe for the salad on Hannah’s blog, Nothing But Delicious); and a big platter of BBQ pork shoulder from Creekridge Farms & local sausages from Porter Road Butcher all in my muscadine BBQ sauce.

 

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©Hannah Messinger

buttermilk cornbread + heirloom tomatoes

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Buttermilk Herb Dressing, recipe below

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

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©Abraham & Susan Rowe

After dinner we revisted childhood with the best s’mores I have ever had consisting of sorghum buttermilk graham crackers made from scratch by Hannah, locally made bean to bar chocolate c/o Olive & Sinclair, and homemade oak & earl gray marshmallows from yours truly, and we sent everyone home with their very own s’mores kits. My kind of swag.

So thank you all—helpers, partners, fellow hosts, Kinfolk, and especially our wonderful guests, some of whom you can find here: Maker’s Workshop, Sarah Jule, Pennyweight, Blue Bird Vintage, Ruthie Lindsey Design, Abraham and Susan Rowe, Home and Hill Magazine, Sleeveless, Holler Design, and Porter Flea. Thanks for an evening I’ll never forgot, one that will surely be the catalyst for many more to come—including another Kinfolk workshop on making culinary infusions we’ll be hosting in November right here in Chattanooga, TN. Sad you missed this one? Keep an eye out for tickets!

Olive & Sinclair bean to bar chocolate from Nashville,TN

bean to bar chocolate made in Nashville by Olive & Sinclair

Kinfolk "The Art of Camp Cooking", Nashville, homemade s'mores fixins with Olive & Sinclair Chocolate

a Kinfolk gathering: the art of camp cooking, nashville

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

Kinfolk Camp Cooking Workshop Nashville

 

Without further ado, here’s a recipe for the buttermilk herb dressing! And you can find these recipes here: the sorghum graham crackers, the turnip green & spicy cornbread saladthe pulled pork, muscadine sauce, oak marshmallows, and Earl Gray marshmallows! Interested in chocolate? You can get it here.

 

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Buttermilk Herb Dressing

Total Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 2 cups of dressing

The secret to this buttermilk dressing is a wonderful cacophony of herbs & using homemade aioli instead of mayonnaise. To make it otherworldly use Cruze Farm's buttermilk if you can find it in your area. This dressing was made for that turnip green, okra, corn, and cornbread salad.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 minced chives
  • 1/4 cup minced basil
  • 1/4 cup minced mint
  • 1 tsp minced thyme
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced & mashed into a paste with a pinch of salt
  • 2 egg yolks
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 1/2 cup good olive oil
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tsp salt, plust more to taste
  • 1 tsp fresh cracked pepper

Instructions

  1. Mince all herbs, put in a small bowl, and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl set on a damp towel (to keep it from moving around), whisk the garlic salt paste with the egg yolks. Fill a small bowl or cup with water and keep it close at hand.
  3. Whisking constantly, begin adding the oil one drop at a time (I use a spoon to do this at first). As it starts to emulsify you can add the oil in a little bit faster in a very thin stream whisking constantly. When it starts to look very thick, when about 1/4 of the oil has been added, add the lemon juice.
  4. After the lemon juice has been added continue to whisk in the oil adding a few drops of water as needed if you notice it getting too thick. To do this I just dip my fingers in the water and shake a few drops into the bowl to thin it as needed until all of the oil has been added and you have an aioli.
  5. In a medium bowl combine the aioli, yogurt, buttermilk, herbs, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine.
  6. Store in the fridge in an airtight jar.

Notes

adapted from The Barefoot Contessa

http://localmilkblog.com/2013/09/a-kinfolk-workshop-the-art-of-camp-cooking-nashville.html

xoxo

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39 Responses to A Kinfolk Workshop: The Art of Camp Cooking, Nashville

  1. What a pleasure to see these photos. Kinfolk is a fantastic read!

  2. Kezia says:

    Such beauty in your words and photos today. I want to dive into my computer screen and by there right with you all!

  3. Rebekka says:

    Oh, Beth…this is beyond beautiful.

  4. Liz M-B. says:

    This evening looks heartbreakingly beautiful. I love the (highly elevated) smores! Perhaps I’ll try to pick up some Olive & Sinclair chocolate when I’m in Nashville in a few weeks. Any other local recommendations?

  5. you have the most beautiful blog – thanks for sharing the lovely pictures

  6. sarah says:

    Swoon. What a gorgeous evening! Let’s please have a party together some day. xo

  7. […] From Beth’s Kinfolk post on her beautiful blog, Local […]

  8. Sherry Ann says:

    Oh what a delicious dinner and your message in this post, beautiful. Well done!

  9. Daniella says:

    What an amazing looking night! And those smores! Oh my…. totally jealous. Such a beautiful photo of you ladies at the end there too.

  10. Wow, just wow.

    That’s really the only word I can come up with after feasting on that visual and verbal banquet above. XO.

  11. Beautiful, simply beautiful! Those s’mores look delightful and I love the parting gift, just perfection!

  12. the bone marrow is making my heart go pitter-patter, in a good way. sigh.

  13. Unbelievable. I cannot get over how gorgeous these photos are! And I love Earl Grey marshmallows, I can only imagine how tasty those would be on a s’more.

  14. One word: stunning. I love these photos so much. Your shooting style is gorgeous! And Kinfolk… I look forward every season to them coming out. The issues are actually part of my decor…nobody touches them but me! :)

  15. Emily Brock says:

    Hey gal,
    It all looks amazing! Makes me super sad we didn’t MOVE TO NASHVILLE a few months sooner. We’re moving Oct. 1, and we must meet up next time you can make it to town. Also, we’ll be making a trip down to Atlanta soon after arriving, and naturally heading through your town.

    This is just fantastic, though. :)

    e

  16. Good golly! I am speechless. What a beautiful, warm, and perfectly southern evening. Lovingly this interpretation of camp cooking. If you host an event in Chatty I would love love love to get to attend! Xo :)

  17. Joy says:

    Everything looks magical. Wish I was there!

  18. Patty says:

    It is all too beautiful.
    I’m interested in the pedestal the marshmallows are on. Where would I find one of these?
    I’m definitely going to try the marshmallows too.
    Thanks

  19. Samantha says:

    What a lovely event. Such stunning photos!

  20. Stunning! Some of the best food pictures I’ve ever seen! I’m book marking this post for future inspiration!

  21. […] a good read. Food 52 columns by Phyllis, Yossy, Alice, Emiko, Beth, Molly and more! Amazing. This Kinfolk workshop  is swoon-worthy. I love these bread stencils. This blog is a very pretty space. My friends at […]

  22. All so beautiful! What a wonderful day. I’m totally inspired x

  23. […] I’ve been living vicariously through the dreamy recaps of this Kinfolk workshop… […]

  24. Absolutely beautiful Beth!!!! really love this so much.

  25. Sarah B. says:

    So inspired by your photos lately Beth. True talent, all the best to you! x

  26. Jessica says:

    Beautiful, beautiful photos! So inspiring. Thank you for sharing!

  27. […] For more inspiration and photos, head over to Local Milk. […]

  28. […] green salad with roasted okra, grilled corn, spicy buttermilk cornbread croutons, and a thick buttermilk herb dressing by Beth (you can find the recipe for the salad on Hannah’s blog, Nothing But Delicious); and a big […]

  29. justine says:

    elegant – my favorite shots are the s’mores!

  30. We stumbled over here different website and thought
    I should check things out. I like what I see so now i’m following you.
    Look forward to looking over your web page yet again.

  31. Camping Gear says:

    Very good post. I absolutely love this website.

    Continue the good work!

  32. Allie says:

    I love these photos & your blog! Can’t wait to start reading all of your posts.

    :)

  33. […] of a bow. I mean, how gorgeous are the gifts wrapped with flowers up top from Studio DIY and Local Milk?  I’m kind of speechless. Of course you can always add a candy cane or an ornament but this […]

  34. […] credits: Beth Kirby // Makers Workshop // Rebekka Seale // Hannah Messinger // Abraham & Susan […]

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