Only sort of about Food … well, indirectly exactly about food

A few weeks back I wrote about how much we were enjoying the show 100-Mile Challenge. It ended after 6 weeks. It appeared that either interest or funding collapsed and the show condensed in to repetitions of what we’d already seen for the last two weeks. Suffice to say, we felt a bit cheated, and it didn’t help that our other standby shows have been just awful … think crime show featuring grizzly bears in the everglades, and yes, it was that bad. But, one great thing that came out of the 100-Mile Challenge was a recipe I have yet to try for Honey Caramel, but I will because it looks OH SO GOOD!

I also just finished reading their book entitled The 100-Mile Diet: a Year of Local Eating or Plenty: Eating Locally on the 100-Mile Diet. The first is the version I read from our Library, but theoretically it’s the Canadian/Australian version, and the second is the American version. I have no idea the differences in the American version, but maybe they are a little kinder towards the American way of eating, but I doubt it.

We’ve also made the difficult decision to not continue with our community garden next year. There are various factors including travel, time required, other priorities including getting our own house with our own yard, and the bit of drama the community garden is currently experiencing with it’s “reorganization”. Not to mention the fact that they tilled up our carrots, beets and kale that were happily growing into their winter sweetness.

After all this, my heart has been aching to find ways to support local farms and dairies and to be a little more self-sufficient. I don’t just want to grow my own food, but I want to take care of our planet in so doing. We have a lead on a wonderful CSA, but their prices just went up 50% this week and I’m not sure that’s going to fly with us. So, I’ve planted garlic and horseradish in our front yard, we have a few upsidedown hanging pots for tomatoes for next year, and the herbs should be happy now that I’ve removed the GIANT lemon balm and pineapple sage. We have also decided to buy local dairy products at the Winder Country Store in West Valley. It’s a bit of a drive, but we can buy 4 gallons of milk, cream, cottage cheese, and sour cream (and Egg Nog this time of year) and it will keep for a good while (it’s super fresh when we buy it) for not much more than we normally spend at Costco. The milk is tastier too, somehow creamier, and it should make good yogurt as well. I can’t wait to try making cheese with it.

But, this wasn’t enough. So, we are now the proud owners of a fully installed window shelf and growlight Matt found online. The growlight can go up and down easily having been installed onto a $1 shade we bought several years ago – love the repurposing! I plan on transplanting my rosemary from outside and bringing it in for the winter, and maybe I’ll grow some lettuce, green onions, basil and chives to bring life to our otherwise dreary kitchen in the winter. I love that my husband is handy enough to figure stuff like this out. and the whole light contraption is hidden by sliding it up behind by the cute shade made by Matt’s mom.

I know I need to find more to fill my local fix, but it will take time, and I will very likely never give up a lot of things like oats and sugar and bread, but I’ll try new things if I must. Now, if we could only get started on actual construction in the basement … speaking of other projects.

By demand

Matt’s aunt El was asking about a cabbage thing I made to go with our locally made kielbasa the other night. We didn’t have any kraut, so we had to improvise. So I sauted some red and green cabbage with onion – one onion or so to a half a head of cabbage – in a little butter and some olive oil on medium heat. I let the onions sweeten up, added a little salt and pepper to taste, and right at the end I added some apple cider vinegar, just a splash to deepen the flavor. It was pretty good, but I can’t even give quantities because I don’t really know them. It was excellent with the sausage and potatoes, and a great winter meal.

Local food

This is a reminder to me that I want to post about all of the local food we’re enjoying, including raw milk from my grandfather-in-law’s dairy farm (and the cream on top!) Yum.