4 Days into the Challenge

I’ve completed four days of local-only food. I’ve been getting berries and veggies from Tuttle’s (they have quite a bit of their home-grown veggies on the shelves now), Barker’s Farm (on Route 33), picked up some milk and cream from Philbrick’s (they carry the Harris glass bottle dairy) and snipped some mint from my front yard. I ordered a 5lb bag of the Wood Prairie whole wheat flour (and made a leaden loaf of 100% whole wheat bread…I actually do know better than to do that, it was just an experiment). I have some local butter, cheese, honey, and maple syrup. I’m picking up fish tomorrow. Oh, and I harvested my own sea salt.

I only have myself to feed, but it’s amazing how much forethought it’s been taking. Right now, at 7:30 at night, I need to consider tomorrow’s breakfast. Defrost some berries? Boil potatoes? Start another round of bread? If I’m not at home for lunch, I’ll need to bring something along. Unfortunately, it feels like a bit of a chore, but I know it will get easier as I grow accustomed to my new rhythm.

On the delicious side of local food, I made a great ratatouille last night with gorgeous tomatoes, eggplant, onion, zucchini, and summer squash (substituting local butter for the olive oil) , a pretty salad with shell beans, and berries with maple-sweetened whipped cream. I’m making vichyssoise later this week.

I’m going to try to go as long as possible with 100% local food. I think next week I’ll consider what exceptions I may make (tea, cinnamon, white flour, and chocolate come to mind). I also need to gauge how reasonable it is to do drive all about to gather this awesome food, as it’s the environmental aspect of this challenge that I love. I’ve already learned a lot, I only wish my schedule would allow me to get to any of the farmer’s markets.

Hope everyone else in the Challenge is feeling nourished and proud.

Happy eating!

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One Comment

  1. Posted September 5, 2007 at 10:21 am | Permalink

    You’re so right – the farmers’ market shopping definitely helps keep the number of trips down because so much is in one place at one time. And I find myself buying slightly larger quantities than I normally would, or re-stocking before I run out if I happen to be in the neighborhood. For example, I was driving by Kellie Brook Farm (rte 33 in Greenland) and stopped to get two dozen eggs, even though I wasn’t in immediate need, to hopefully save myself from a special trip another time.

    I also have pie-in-the-sky ideas about the sourcing – I hope that by proving demand, we can encourage our local retailers to do a bit better job doing some local sourcing.

    I hear you about the sometimes feeling like a chore – Brendan and I have been doing a *lot* of canning, and of course all our own baking, for the Challenge, and he has been joking that it’s like “1940’s House”, a la the PBS specials Frontier House and Colonial House. In more ways than one he’s onto something – when food is not as easy to come by, you value it more appropriately.

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