Every society has a food culture of some sort. Countries are known for their cuisine; the particular ingredients and cooking methods they employ, the rhythms and routines around meal preparation, the colour and bustle of marketplaces around the world. Early trade was centred around foods, and what was commonplace for some cultures was exotic and sought after to others. Nomadic communities based their movement around the availability of particular seasonal foods.
I believe that, by and large, Western society has lost its food culture. And we miss it, by god, do we miss it. We spend millions annually on the business of food; fine dining restaurants, specialty food stores, cooking schools, food festivals. I believe that, as we have evolved, this disconnection from food and its production that we have created has left our society feeling somewhat... hollow. We make up for it by spending more millions traveling to other cultures to experience their food culture... and when we try to recreate it with our Western tastes, we adulterate and compromise the essence of the food. Food culture is, and should be, entrenched in the soils it was raised up from.
Anyway, I was determined to write a lighter post than the last two, so I wanted to share with you some of ways we try to recreate a connection with the earth and its edible gifts in our space. These are photos from this weekend, a lovely, productive two days of pottering around the house and garden, feeding our bellies and feeding our souls.
|Breakfast: fruit and honey damper with the last of my apricot sauce|
|Our harvest on Saturday|
|More bottled tomatoes - a pantry staple|
|Our little garden gnome, Eden|
|The bed we planted this weekend - tomatoes and rhubarb|
|Orange and date chutney simmering away - a sweet, spicy smell|
|Finished product - three more jars for the pantry|
|The beginnings of beer bottling|
|A clean, mucked out chook pen - and our reward!|