The Ravenous Book Club met last week to talk about Plenty, Eating Locally on the 100 Mile Diet by Alisa Smith & J.B. MacKinnon. The discussion was good and centered around what local eating would look like for Tacomans. Would a person want to define the area geographically, as in west of the mountains and east of the Sound? Or would a 100 mile diet be appropriate, which would include, just barely, Yakima and all of the goodness of the arid central WA climate? Or would a statewide limit work? That would allow us to get flour from Bluebird Farms in NE Washington.
As much as I'm beginning to believe in the merits of local eating, I think I'd have trouble excluding Tillamook on the Central Oregon coast. Mmmm, butter, cheddar cheese, yogurt, and sour cream. But who am I kidding? I'm just starting to get used to the concepts of eating local and am definitely not ready to commit to restrictions. One of the ladies at the book club meeting asked if anyone was going to commit to a local diet for a few months or a year and if we'd like to start a support group. I was honest, at least, when I said, maybe next year. I'm doing the best that I can to change my ways, but it is a gradual process.
But for now, here is a glimpse of a breakfast of which I refuse to be ashamed!
Leftover homemade cornbread (sure the cornmeal, flour, and sugar are from mystery locations distributed by mega-corporations, and don't even get me started on the baking soda and salt! But the egg is from our CSA!) The jam is homemade, made from local raspberries last summer by my dear friend, Whitney. Yum!
My daily coffee is another compromise. The coffee is Tully's fair trade french roast. Tully's is/was a Seattle based company and is now (partially?) owned by a socially responsible company, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, and I like the coffee (especially for the sale price at the local grocery). But the creamer*, oh dear, I don't even want to know it's ingredients! Let's not talk about it right now. Actually, I kind of wish I hadn't looked at the labels on all of my baking ingredients. I can't believe we have cornmeal in the cupboard distributed by Nestle. I guess the best we can do is use what we have and then pay more attention to future purchases. I know I can at least do better with the cornmeal and flour! Even if the products at Bob's Red Mill aren't grown locally, at least I'm not supporting an evil mega-corporation.
*The actual (delicious!!!) creamer may not be healthy (water, sugar, palm oil, corn syrup are the top four ingredients), but a little research on the corporation is making me feel a little better. International Delight is owned by White Wave Foods, which actually has won at least one award for multiple years from the EPA for their efforts to use green power.