Saturday, December 20, 2008

Good Choices

I've been reading a book this week that I want to send to everyone in this country. I especially recommend it to all of you bread-baking, tomato sauce-canning, home brewers. It is Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver. I tried to read The Poisonwood Bible once but I just couldn't get into it. This is way better. She and her family moved to Appalachia and lived for one year (and beyond) on local food, mostly what they grew themselves. The one caveat I have is DO NOT read this on an empty stomach or with an empty larder. It may also induce a desire to run out and buy canning equipment and get thoughts about where one could build a bread oven.
It is also part of an interesting synergy I've experienced in the past two weeks.
It began with the sauerkraut. Shortly after I started my batch I decided that it would be great to join a CSA (community supported agriculture). There is one in my neighborhood but the shares are large, much too large for one person. Also, the pick-up is on a weekday between 4 and 7. I could not be certain of getting there on time every week. But the internet was there for me and I found a CSA directory. Turns out there are more than a dozen CSA's in New York City. There is one right by my work. It has smaller shares and is also organic. I found out about it just in time to take advantage of the early bird price. Now I began to think that what I needed was some other fermentation recipes. This led me to a book called Wild Fermentation by Sandor Katz. He lives on a commune in Tennessee. The book has not only pickling but recipes for miso, tempeh, cheese, wine, cider, beer, and lots of other things. All the wonderful stuff made by happy microbes. This in turn led me to another book, this one on home cheese making by Ricki Carroll. Some cheeses require extra equipment like a press but soft cheeses like mozzarella and mascarpone just need some extra ingredients. While I was happily imagining home made mozzarella and mead I got an email from the CSA. It was a notice of a workshop on fermentation given by - of course- Sandor Katz. And the very next day I reached a chapter in the Kingsolver book on her cheese making which she learned from Ricki Carroll's book. I have taken all of this to be a sign that I am headed in the right direction, at least food-wise. It would be nice to have a garden too but I must proceed one step at time.


LMP said...

Isn't it amazing how this stuff can just overtake you? Some days I dread leaving my kitchen for my office., for example...

趙又廷Kirk said...
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