Monday, February 22, 2010

Eating In

Following my two years of participating in local foods challenges (One Local Summer, Dark Days of Winter, etc), I haven't talked much about our eating habits. Occasionally, I'll talk about our foraging local foods (maple syrup!) and our gardening, what we're canning, our trips to the Farmer's Market ... or our all local Thanksgiving dinner.

But mostly, I don't do food challenges anymore, because ... well, been there, done that, got the 25 lb bag of local(ly milled) flour ;).

When I saw the Eat-In for a Week Challenge, I thought, "I can do that." In fact, I think this one will be much easier than the local foods challenges, because I'm not limited in the ingredients I choose for the meals. I can cook whatever I have available in the kitchen without having to report the local and non-local ingredients.

Cooking our food from ingredients in my kitchen is pretty much how we do it every day, anyway. Afterall, with the local food challenge, I was kind of forced to cook from scratch using whole ingredients, because, first, there aren't a lot of places, locally, that process food-stuff, and, second, I could never be sure that all of the ingredients in the locally processed foods were locally sourced. So, even if the bread is made locally, if the ingredients are from China, is it local bread? I mean, *I* can make a really tasty smoothie in my kitchen using mangoes from Brazil, pineapple from Paraguay, and bananas from Costa Rica ... add a little of our own maple syrup and some milk from our local dairy farm and call it "local", but it's not really local, is it?

Hopefully, I won't bore everyone with a week's worth of posting our daily menu and the crappy pictures I take of the food we eat (I think I need to get some prettier plates ... or something).

But I did want to second the assertion that even in a small kitchen, great things can happen. My kitchen is 96 sq feet total. The floor space is about 36 sq feet, and my one counter is, roughly, 2'x3'. Still, I manage to cook two meals per day (breakfast is whatever they scrounge ... some days it's ice cream ;) for my family, including most of the loaf bread we eat, can, ferment, and sprout all sorts of goodies ... and Deus Ex Machina is even able to brew beer.

I've even managed to prepare an all local dinner for eight kids and seven adults in my tiny kitchen (with the pi├Ęce de r├ęsistance being the in-season boiled shrimp ;).

When it comes to kitchens, I have to say that size really doesn't matter. It's what you do with what you got that counts. Like Teddy Roosevelt said, "Do what you can with what you have where you are.".

This week, we'll be doing just that!


  1. I guess I feel the way you feel about the Eat Local challenges about this challenge. I mean restaurants? What are those? I can count the number of times we have fast food in one year on one hand.

  2. Agreed! Whether the ingredients are local or not, homemade is best.