Sunday, June 27, 2010

Eat your dirt.

Just two weeks ago my life was changed by the addition of our first child - a beautiful girl. This, plus recently beginning the book Animal Vegetable Miracle, has got me on a course to try to eat as close to the source as possible. Now there are many important reasons to eat locally produced food & your choices effect not only the local economy, but the environment and the flavor and quality of your food. By choosing local produce you help keep your money in your community and avoid all of the fossil fuel consumption it takes food to travel across the country. Most importantly though, food consumed as close to the time and place the food was uprooted or raised means that your food is fresher and tastier.

Now I don't know that I can commit to only eat local, but I can do my best to know where my food came from and understand how it was produced (hopefully by dirt, water and sun instead of some patented process). Anyway, its really just a point of trying to change my thinking about the choices I make regarding what my family & I eat.

I decided a good start would be a trip to the Dill Pickle - a recently opened co-op grocery store in my 'hood, to figure out dinner. While at the store I picked up some nice fresh goat cheese from Wisconsin (didn't note the producer), as well as locally grown basil and a baguette from Cook Au Vin - this joined some tomatoes (californian - still good though) for a tasty lunch of bruschetta. I also procured from the Pickle some locally grown carrots & thyme destined for a stew of sustainably grown beef, from Cedar Vally Farms. Lastly, for dinner I found a nice fillet of Trout, brought to the Pickle by Jake's Country Meats out of Cassopolis, MI.

So the actual dinner was pretty simple: The trout, pan seared over high heat with some butter, salt and pepper for about five minutes per side was paired with some basmati rice (also californian) and a salad of tomatoes and arugula (grown organically on my back porch) with a lemon-mustard vinaigrette.
(vinaigrette = 3 parts olive oil, 1 part lemon juice, 1 part Dijon mustard, salt and pepper)