Twice a month we feature local restaurants, farms and farmers markets featured on episodes of UNC-TV’s Flavor, NC. This week, we review episode one of the first season in which hostess Lisa Prince highlights Coon Rock Farm in Hillsborough and Zely & Ritz restaurant in Raleigh.
There are more than 600 family farms in Orange County. Coon Rock Farm, located in Hillsborough, is a sustainable farm bordering the Eno River. Owners Richard Holcomb and Jamie Dement grow several garden crops and provide pasture-raised chickens, eggs, pigs, lambs and goats.
The same year Holcomb and Dement bought Coon Rock Farm, they opened Zely and Ritz in Raleigh. More than half of the ingredients used at the restaurant are fresh from Coon Rock Farm. This includes more than 50 varieties of heirloom tomatoes, including Mr. Stripey and Cherokee purple. Be sure to watch the whole episode to get Lisa’s tips for choosing and storing tomatoes.
Below is the recipe for Bacon Basil Tomato Sauce, which uses many of the ingredients found at Coon Rock Farms. Serve over pasta for a quick and easy lunch or dinner.
1 pound bacon
2 pounds peeled, chopped tomatoes
2 cloves minced garlic
1/2 chopped fresh basil
Salt and pepper to taste
Slice bacon into 1/4-inch chunks. Fry in skillet until almost done. Add minced garlic. When garlic starts to look clear, add tomatoes and simmer on low heat for 10 minutes. Add basil and simmer for an additional 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve over pasta and garnish with fresh grated cheese.