That Unique Serendipity Farmhouse Flavor

Saturday, we had our first springtime dinner on the deck. We seasoned our dinner with that unique Serendipity Farmhouse flavor. And just what might that unique farmhouse flavor be? Well, let’s find out.

Serendipity Farmhouse Springtime Opera

Don’t be fooled by the word Opera. For us, it has nothing to do with singing. Rather, it has to do with numerous labors and works. Often, these opera combine in a way that give us a taste of that Serendipity Farmhouse Flavor.

It’s Spring! There’s so much to do here on our vast 1.203-acre estate. This is not a time to sit back and rest. We’re in the midst of planting vegetables in our three gardens. The grass is growing, and the lawns must be mowed. The deck needs to be stained. The outdoor chores are multiplying and consume our day.

Meanwhile, the highly trained staff of the soon-to-be-world-famous SFH Test Kitchen is working overtime. They are laboring feverishly to complete a huge list of important recipe test-and-evaluations. Our new stove “Mr. Clyde” hasn’t had a moment’s rest.

Farmhouse Hospitality

Just about the time we had thrown up our hands and said we can’t handle one more thing, a new email appeared on my screen. The title says it all. – “So hungry” –

Yikes! In less than two days, an important guest will arrive at SFH and share dinner with us. – I quickly, but carefully (surprises of this sort are not always welcomed) informed my beautiful Spouse Blondie of this sudden change in plans. Together, we consulted our usually, highly comprehensive menu to see what we had planned for Saturday.

Oops! We soon found that our usually, highly comprehensive menu entry was not as comprehensive as it should have been. – We have found two important truths in menu making:

  • 1st: When in doubt, adding TBD (to be determined) to a blank meal space is an easy way to cop out when you entirely lack any culinary inspiration.
  • 2nd: TBD doesn’t taste very good, and you shouldn’t serve it to special guests. This is a most serious breach of farmhouse hospitality.

Benedictine Hospitality

I immediately rounded up the entire SFH Test Kitchen staff. We all gathered together and listened as Chef Blondie explained the reason for this emergency session. As is usual in a situation like this, we opened up the absolute best reference manual ever written to restore peace and purpose to our Test Kitchen.

As you may or may not remember, we are Benedictine Oblates. (See: Dedication to Our Patrons – St. Scholastica & St. Benedict.) Consequently, the Rule of St. Benedict is our standard reference manual and guide. So, when we have a Test Kitchen or hospitality crisis, we immediately refer to Chapter 53: The Reception of Guests.

We zeroed in on two points from Chapter 53 that would solve the problem at hand.

  • 1 – All guests who present themselves are to be welcomed as Christ, for he himself will say: I was a stranger and you welcomed me (Matt 25:35). 
  • 18 – Additional help should be available when needed, so that they can perform this service without grumbling.

That was it! We had a plan! We would welcome the guest with the best of whatever we could offer. Blondie, Pierre LeChat, Mr. Monte, and I assumed our battle stations. We did this without grumbling. This was a task of Benedictine Pax (peace) and joy.

Menu with That Unique Serendipity Farmhouse Flavor

Under Chef Blondie’s watchful eye, the Test Kitchen staff planned the venue and menu for the evening of Saturday, April 29th. It reflects the spirit of Chapter 53 and the Benedictine spirit of hospitality.


We would hold our dinner outdoors on the deck. It would be informal.

Serendipity Farmhouse Flavor

I stained the Serendipity Farmhouse deck on Wednesday. Blondie cleaned and positioned the deck furniture in the most elegant and attractive manner. Then, she prepared the porch to be the main serving center. We tirelessly cleaned and re-cleaned the entire area several times. There was not a single stray maple seed to be seen. – It was ready!


We decided to prepare dinner primarily from ingredients we had on hand. Most importantly, we elected to serve items we had made from scratch or obtained locally.

Appetizer: Small Charcuterie Board

  • Gruyère Cheese, Extra-Sharp White Cheddar Cheese, SFH Homemade Chèvre
  • Mozzarella wrapped in Prosciutto.
  • Marcona Almonds
  • Assorted Crackers

Salad: Simple tossed salad, highlighted with Red and Green Romaine picked from SFH Vegetable Garden #1

Entrée: Lasagna with Meat Sauce – We used locally raised, grass-fed grass-finished beef from Reality Farm. The Parsley was picked from SFH Herb Garden #1.

Bread: Freshly baked SFH Sourdough Artisan Bread. Although the SFH Test Kitchen is still testing this recipe, the Staff felt confident that we were ready for our most recent recipe to make its debut. We would serve the bread with our special homemade butter.

Beverages: Assorted – The featured wine was a 2020 Vin de Miason from our favorite local Quièvremont Vineyard & Winery.

Dessert: Chocolate and Walnut Covered Brownies

Serendipity Farmhouse Flavor is for Every Day

And there you have it. Farmhouse living the Serendipity way has its own unique farmhouse flavor. The Serendipity way prompts us to grow our own food. It guides us in how we prepare our food. We season that farmhouse flavor with locally grown meat and dairy items. And when there is need for a toast, we make that toast with an excellent local wine.

But the most important ingredient we add to that unique Serendipity Farmhouse flavor is our Benedictine Farmhouse Hospitality. That is the secret ingredient we share with every guest who visits Serendipity Farmhouse.

2 thoughts on “That Unique Serendipity Farmhouse Flavor”

    1. And so…who was the guest? And was the evening and meal a success. It sounded delicious!

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