You can’t beet local eating (Day 345)…

February 8, 2008

aggie

OK folks, next up in the “You’ve Gotta Be Kidding Me” series is local eating. And I mean really local — not just restricted to North America, as I’ve previously pledged, and not just from within Canada; all my meals will be limited to what’s being grown in Ontario.

What does this mean? I’ll tell you what it means: Apples, rhubarb, onions, leeks, cabbage, carrots, cucumber, mushrooms, potatoes, sprouts, butternut squash and beets (apparently “without tops”, though I’m not quite sure what that means). Oh, and seeing as I’m a total mycophobe, there won’t actually be any mushrooms on my plate.

This is what Foodland Ontario says is in season during the month of February, so that’s pretty much what I’ll be buying (exceptions will have to be made for protein, as well as tea and coffee — sorry, but if I don’t have caffeine, I get destructively cranky). The online guide is actually pretty handy, and if you click on the menu items to the left of the screen, you can learn more about all the seasonal produce — there’s even a colouring book section, featuring what appears to be the Foodland Ontario mascot, named Aggie (short for… agriculture, maybe?).

Anyway, I’m going to do my best with this one, but I’m also pretty naive and forgetful when it comes to food, so if I end up eating someone’s homemade bread but it actually had some baking soda from… well, wherever baking soda is from… then I’m not going to lose sleep over it.

Still, I think I’ll have to find some innovative ways to prepare cabbage, and if anyone has any breakfast recipes for beets, feel free to pass those on!


An organic cotton nut sack (Day 316)…

January 10, 2008

produce bags

All right, now that I’ve gotten all box-related issues out of my system, it’s time to get into bags. No, not tote bags — I already wrote about those ages ago. I’m talking about these reusable organic cotton produce sacks.

In my various pledges not to use any new plastic and to buy as much in bulk as possible, I’ve run into a problem: Transporting things like nuts, seeds, dried fruit, beans and so on requires a ridiculous amount of preparation if I’m going to avoid using the disposable plastic bags. I don’t have any of my own and I hate reusing the flimsy ones from the store because they get all dusty and gross. I’ve tried bringing my own containers too, but they’re so bulky and often require weighing beforehand.

I really, really needed a better alternative. My friend Meghan told me a while ago she was going to make her own cloth produce bags, but it wasn’t easy finding material that hadn’t already been bleached up the wazoo, so I’m not sure what she’s doing now (Meg? Comment?).

Either way, when I found these cute little sacks online, I decided it was worth the splurge. And I can even write the code numbers for the produce on the bags themselves so I can avoid having to use those fussy twist-ties.

So the real question is: Who double-dog-dares me to ask the next cashier I meet if he can hold my nut sack for a second?

Image from ReusableBags.com