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We’ve been negligent with our blogging lately, as we’ve been very busy, but we have several posts in mind for the next couple of days. To help get us back into the blogging routine, here are several photos of what’s happening in our yard currently.

Pomegranate

A ripe pomegranate on our tree.

Globemallow

A blooming globemallow (Sphaeralcea sp.). This beautiful native plant is common within urban Tucson, and blooms in both spring and fall. We have several globemallows scattered throughout our yard.

Hansel, lime and graywater

Hansel, our kitten, watching the graywater go from our washing machine to our small lime tree.

Tamarind tree

A small tamarind (Tamarindus indica) tree we started from seed earlier this year. Tamarind is a subtropical species which produces delicious edible pods, used worldwide to flavor a wide range of dishes. Our winters may be too cold for them to survive here, but we’re going to try to grow this tree anyway! This winter we will bring it inside the house on frosty nights, and in the spring we plan to put it in the ground in the last remaining spot in our yard suitable for a large tree.

Tomatillo

A tomatillo (Physalis philadelphica) in our garden. I love tomatillos, and we attempted to grow a lot of them in our garden this year. Unfortunately, the plants had a really rough time: they were overshaded and then got hammered by both chrysomelid beetles and Manduca hornworms. Still, a couple of the plants are finally starting to produce a small crop of small fruits.

Tepary bean

A green tepary bean (Phaselous acutifolius). This is one of the few crops that we consistently have success with. These beans are native to northern Mexico and southern Arizona and were grown by the ancient Hohokam people, as well as by their descendents, the modern-day Tohono O’odham. The dried beans are delicious, though they take a long time to cook. The plants do amazingly well in very harsh conditions, requiring very little water. We have a number of them scattered throughout our gardens and growing up the chicken wire fence of our chicken coop. Next year we will try to grow a lot more of them, since they are so productive. The plant pictured here is growing up a native amaranth plant (Amaranthus palmeri).

Melon

We’re not yet sure what this cucurbit is, since we planted both lemon cucumbers and melons in this part of the garden. We’ll find out soon!

Devil’s claw

The devil’s claws (Proboscidea sp.) we planted are still going strong. We’ve been pleasantly surprised by how productive they’ve been. This is another plant we will grow a lot more of next summer.

Okra

We had less success with the okra we planted. We’ve managed to keep one plant alive through the harsh summer and fall we’ve had, and amazingly it seems to be about to bloom!

Sorghum

We had some success with sorghum, although birds have already gotten to most of the grain.

Garden

The fall and winter garden we planted is growing very slowly. It’s been a hot and dry fall – our high temperatures are still in the upper 80′s and lower 90′s, which is almost 10 degrees above the climatological average, and it’s been very dry. Still, the plants are hanging on, and we can just about start to harvest a little bit of onions and greens.

One of our favorite discoveries during our initial local eating experiment was amaranth grain. We’d eaten it before, but hadn’t fully appreciated how delicious it was. It quickly became one of our favorite snacks at night. We’d mix the popped grain (purchased from Native Seeds/SEARCH, who grow it in Patagonia, Arizona) with some local olive oil (from Queen Creek Olive Mill in Phoenix), salt (from Sonora, Mexico), and guajillo chile powder (also grown by Native Seeds/SEARCH). It makes a great popcorn substitute (I think it’s better than popcorn, personally).

We later learned of another way to use amaranth grain. We attended the Native Seeds Sustainable Gardening Tour in September, and part of this tour was a demonstration by Diana Peel, the Community Relations Coordinator for Native Seeds/SEARCH, of how to cook with amaranth grain. We loved her recipe for amaranth patties, and have adapted it somewhat.

Basically, to make amaranth grain patties we first combine the following ingredients (we haven’t paid attention to exact proportions – the following are just approximations):

  • 2 cups popped or unpopped amaranth grain (or some of both)
  • One large egg
  • One tablespoon of whole wheat flour (to help it hold together)
  • Half of a small yellow onion
  • One clove of garlic
  • Half of a green bell pepper
  • Half of a red Anaheim chile
  • A tablespoon of chopped fresh basil leaves
  • A teaspoon of crushed coriander
  • Half of a teaspoon of salt
  • One cup of water

We sometimes use other ingredients as well (such as tomatoes or crushed chiltepines). The recipe is very forgiving and flexible – basically you can use whatever you have on hand that would be good in an omelette. You can make it wetter or drier by adding more or less wheat flour or amaranth. It should ideally be about the consistency of thick oatmeal.

The final step is simply to fry the mix in a pan with a little bit of olive oil over medium heat. Let it cook for a minute and then flip it over and cook the other side for another minute. The patties are delicious served with fresh salsa.

Marci made some of these amaranth patties for dinner tonight, and we topped them with a salsa she made from tomatoes, roasted Anaheim chiles, red onion, white wine vinegar (non-local), and salt. She also made delicious mashed potatoes with butter (non-local), guajillo chile powder, turmeric (non-local), and salt. Finally, she prepared a salad using arugula, basil, mizuna, mibuna, Portulaca, radishes, tomatoes, and pomegranate, with a dressing of olive oil and balsamic vinegar (non-local).

It was a delicious meal. For dessert we’ll probably finish off the bag of chocolate chips we had from before our local experiment. We’ve come to really appreciate chocolate – of all the foods we can’t get locally, chocolate is probably the one we prize the most!

Dinner 10-24-2007

Amaranth patties, mashed potatoes, and salad

There were more great articles last week than I could keep up with! Here are some of the best:

  • Your Food Doesn’t Come From the Store: A journey into the heart of industrial agriculture (Grist) – Grist had a great week-long series of articles on food and farming. In addition to the article linked above, I’d recommend the following:

  • Lazy-Ass Nation (Vanity Fair) – This is a funny and saddening look at our overriding quest for convenience. I found the following section to be particularly disturbing:
    “Hunting and the Internet nearly made the best combination since peanut butter and chocolate: Texas entrepreneur John Lockwood came up with a way for people sitting in front of home computers to shoot animals on his canned-hunting ranch. Lockwood had it rigged so that a customer, with a mere click of the mouse, could activate a .22-caliber rifle on his property. He managed to realize at least one instance of online hunting, when a friend of his logged on and shot a wild hog in the neck from his desktop, before state and federal lawmakers outlawed the practice. For now it looks as if Lockwood will have to be content to go down as some sort of lazy-ass pioneer.”

  • Climbing Down The Ladder (The Archdruid Report) – Yet another great article by John Michael Greer on succession and civilization.
    “In the middle term, societies that combine sustainable subsistence strategies and economies with an effective use of the industrial age’s legacy technologies will likely do much better than the lingering fossil fuel-dependent societies they replace, or the ecotechnic societies that will replace them in turn. Only when fossil fuel production has dropped to the point that coal and oil are rare geological curiosities, and the remaining legacies of the industrial age no longer play a significant economic role, will ecotechnic societies come into their own… Instead of trying to make the leap to an ecologically balanced, fully sustainable society all at once, it may turn out to be necessary to climb down the ladder a step at a time, adapting to changes as they happen, and trying to anticipate each step in succession in time to prepare for it, while working out the subsistence strategies and social networks of the future on a variety of smaller scales.”

  • Diet for Small Planet May Be Most Efficient if It Includes Dairy and a Little Meat, Cornell Researchers Report (Cornell University) – This was a very interesting study which found that a purely vegetarian food production system in New York state would feed fewer people than if it also integrated small-scale animal production. This makes intuitive sense, but it’s nice to see the numbers worked out. Sharon Astyk (author of Casaubon’s Book) has published a nice take on this study as well.
    “‘Surprisingly, however, a vegetarian diet is not necessarily the most efficient in terms of land use,’ said Peters. The reason is that fruits, vegetables and grains must be grown on high-quality cropland, he explained. Meat and dairy products from ruminant animals are supported by lower quality, but more widely available, land that can support pasture and hay. A large pool of such land is available in New York state because for sustainable use, most farmland requires a crop rotation with such perennial crops as pasture and hay. Thus, although vegetarian diets in New York state may require less land per person, they use more high-valued land.”

  • Shipping Pollution ‘Far More Damaging Than Flying’ (The Independent) – A new study finds that emissions from shipping exceed that from aviation. While I think it’s important to draw attention to the immense pollution arising from the shipping industry, and to do something to reduce it, I think this article is a bit unfair in that it doesn’t compare the numbers of most importance: the pollution generated from transporting X tons of goods by ship versus transporting X tons of goods by jet. I suspect that the latter would be orders of magnitude higher.
    “Recent studies in the US and the Netherlands showed pollutants from ships contribute half of the smog-related sulphur dioxide in Los Angeles. In Rotterdam, North Sea shipping lanes run within 25 miles of the shore, spewing pollution that can travel up to 1,000 miles. ‘If you want to improve air quality on land, you will have a larger effect from spending one euro at sea than you will have spending one euro on land,’ said Pieter Hammingh, from the Dutch environment agency.”

  • As the World Burns: Powerdown Revisited (Richard Heinberg) – An interesting discussion of the possible societal and governmental responses to post-peak economic decline, plus a depressing summary of recent events from a Peak Oil perspective. This article is a nice complement to the one I linked to above by John Michael Greer, as they both hit on some similar themes.
    “Where shall we focus our efforts? As I suggested in Powerdown, there is important work to be done at all levels of social organization. Individuals and families should take to heart the advice given prior to every commercial airline flight: ‘Secure your oxygen mask before helping others.’ In other words, see to your own survival prospects first. This is not necessarily selfish behavior: communities and nations in which individual members are prepared and relatively self-sufficient will fare much better than those in which everyone is dependent and unequipped. If no one is prepared, who can teach others what to do? Learn the life-skills of the pre-fossil-fuel era; know how to use and repair hand tools; know where your water comes from and how to compost wastes; grow food. Communities must begin now to redevelop their local support infrastructure – especially local food systems… In any case, two things are absolutely clear: business as usual is not one of the options; and the more we do now to prepare at every level, the better off we all will be.”

  • A Carbon-Negative Fuel (WorldChanging) – A great article about gasification and biochar (aka terra preta), which have a ton of potential to provide both a fuel source and an agricultural fertilizer, while sequestering carbon out of the atmosphere. In my opinion this is one of the few energy technologies we should really be putting our resources into developing.
    “We’ve mentioned terra preta before: it’s a human-made soil or fertilizer. ‘Three times richer in nitrogen and phosphorous, and twenty times the carbon of normal soils, terra preta is the legacy of ancient Amazonians who predate Western civilization’… These simpler molecules are more easily broken down by microbes and plants as food, and bond more easily with key nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus. This is what makes terra preta such good fertilizer. Because terra preta locks so much carbon in the soil, it’s also a form of carbon sequestration that doesn’t involve bizarre heroics like pumping CO2 down old mine shafts. What’s more, it may reduce other greenhouse gases as well as water pollution… As it happens, the process of burning/pyrolisizing agricultural char is also a way to produce energy.”

  • Prairie Chicken: Why environmental groups have been slow to fight the border wall (Grist) – This is an interesting article about the insane wall being built along the U.S.-Mexico border, and the political reasons that environmental groups have shied away from fighting it more vigorously.
    “However, a 2006 NBC poll found that a significant majority of people said they would be more likely to vote for a candidate who favored building a fence along the border. And that may explain some of the momentum. Precisely because of the wall’s ineffectiveness in stanching the flow of people across the border, it’s the perfect solution for the many members of Congress who want to show their constituents they’re doing something about illegal immigration — without actually cutting off the supply of cheap labor demanded by Big Ag and the service industry.”

The University of Arizona is hosting a week-long series of events about sustainability, starting this Wednesday, October 24, and going through next Wednesday, October 31. This is in conjunction with the Educating for Sustainability Conference, which is happening on the U of A campus from October 25-27. It should be an interesting week! I’m especially excited to hear Jonathan Overpeck (who is a member of the IPCC, which shared the Nobel Peace Prize with Al Gore) speak on Thursday night, and to hear Gary Nabhan speak on Friday night. Both of their lectures are free and open to the public. I’m going to try to make it to as many of the other events as I can, and will report back on anything interesting I see or hear.

Update: Well, we didn’t end up making it to many of the events during the UA Sustainability Week, but we did catch Gary Nabhan’s talk on Friday night. He gave a great presentation on “sustainability”, a concept he said he prefers to think of as a verb (rather than a noun) to indicate its nature as an ongoing process, rather than a hypothetical endpoint. I think this is a great point, and worth keeping in mind. We thoroughly enjoyed his talk and thought it was very inspiring.

I also heard Jonathan Overpeck speak on Monday about global warming (this was separate from his talk on Thursday). He gave an interesting and informative talk about recent data on climate change, with a partial emphasis on drought in the western U.S. I was already somewhat familiar with most of what he talked about, but it was great to hear it from someone actually involved in much of the research (if it can be “great” to hear such scary and depressing information). Apparently the current prediction for the Southwest is a 10% drop in average winter precipitation by the end of the century (if I’m remembering the timeframe correctly), though it’s completely unclear what will happen to our monsoon rainfall. In terms of temperature, one of his graphs seemed to suggest the possibility of a roughly 10° F increase in average temperature for southern Arizona by 2100. It’s going to get interesting around here…

It’s the time of year when Desert Harvesters has their annual mesquite millings. Desert Harvesters is dedicated to promoting the use of mesquite and other native wild foods in the Sonoran Desert. I helped staff the first milling event this weekend at Colossal Cave, but there are several more in the coming weeks. Bring your mesquite pods to one of the events and have them ground into flour!

Mesquite pods are an abundant, nutritious and delicious food source which sadly is barely utilized. We must make mesquite flour one of our staple foods, as it once was for the native peoples of the region, if we are to have any hope of developing a sustainable local food economy in the Tucson area.

There is a full list of milling events, and instructions for how to prepare your pods, at the Desert Harvesters website. I also added the events to our own Events page.

Last week was slow in terms of good articles to link to, so I decided to combine it with this week. I’m still going to keep the list short, however, because I haven’t caught up on all my reading for this week.

  • Visions of a Biofuel Future (Jeff Vail) – On the humanitarian crises starting to stem from biofuel production.
    “Indentured servitude, a workforce confined to the borders of the plantation by armed guards, being ‘paid’ by being allowed to live in unlit huts and drink water from the pig trough. Violations punished by summary execution and burial in an unmarked pit. This sounds like a historical account of life on a colonial plantation of the 18th century, but is actually the description of the sugar industry, today, in the Dominican Republic… Of course, the larger issue here is that biofuel production is dependent on exactly this industry… It may be quite some time before Americans are enslaved in the production of fuel for other Americans’ cars, but are we so racist/nationalist/blind to accept the enslavement of others to these ends?”

  • Toward An Ecotechnic Society (The Archdruid Report) – More on the ecological succession model of human civilizations.
    “As it exists today, the industrial economy can best be described in ecological terms as a scheme for turning resources into pollution at the highest possible rate. Thus resource exhaustion and pollution problems aren’t accidental outcomes of industrialism, they’re hardwired into the industrial system: the faster resources turn into pollution, the more the industrial economy prospers, and vice versa. That forms the heart of our predicament. Peak oil is simply one symptom of a wider crisis – the radical unsustainability of a system that has evolved to maximize resource consumption on a finite planet – and trying to respond to it without dealing with the larger picture simply guarantees that other symptoms will surface elsewhere and take its place.”

  • October 6 – When One Planet Was No Longer Enough (iNSnet.org) – This is an interesting idea – the Global Footprint Network calculated how many Earths we would need to support our current levels of consumption (the answer right now is 1.3). Based on that, they determined the day of the year on which we began living off “ecological debt”. That day is getting earlier and earlier each year.
    “‘Humanity is living off its ecological credit card,’ said Dr. Mathis Wackernagel, Executive Director of Global Footprint Network, ‘Just as spending more money than you have in the bank leads to financial debt, ecological overshoot, or using more resources than the planet can renew in a year, accumulates an ecological debt. This can go on for a short time, but ultimately it leads to a build up of waste and the depletion of the very resources on which the human economy depends.’”

  • Of Doomers, Realists, Powerdowners and Fantasists (Energy Bulletin) – This is a good article discussing Peak Oil “doomers” (i.e. people who believe we are in for a hard crash) and “powerdowners” (people who believe we are in for a gradual, soft landing). Which side is being most realistic?
    ‘Doomers’ in the article are also used in an analogy with religious fundamentalists, people normally charged with being (as Sinclair Lewis put it) superbly trained in reconciling contradictions. But in my opinion, anyone who maintains that biofuels will save the day, that voluntary simplicity is a feasible solution to Peak Oil, or that energy can decrease and population stay the same, is hard at work at contradiction reconciling.

  • Barack Obama’s Plan to Make America a Global Energy Leader (via Gristmill) – I’m not posting this in order to advocate voting for him (he’s not even my preferred candidate), but I was pleasantly surprised by his new energy plan. It seems to be quite good in most respects, from what I can make of it. I’m not impressed by his advocacy of biofuels, coal, and nuclear energy, but he does say that these energy sources should only be utilized if the numerous issues surrounding them can be resolved. Whether he’ll stick by that statement down the road when we’re desperate for energy is another matter… I do really like that his plan includes a restructuring of our communities to support a more sustainable transportation infrastructure, as well as an emphasis on higher efficiency.

Congratulations to Al Gore and the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change for winning the Nobel Peace Prize. This honor is completely and deeply deserved. Climate change and Peak Oil are in my opinion the two greatest threats to peace in the coming decades, and nobody has done more to alert the world to the dangers of climate change than Al Gore. Since the solutions to both issues are largely the same, he has indirectly done a lot to address Peak Oil as well. It is wonderful that he is getting the recognition he deserves.

Update: A couple of good articles from Grist about this -

Tonight we realized that this is a great time to be eating locally here. Most of our staple foods from last month are still in season (potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash, chiles, tomatoes, okra, etc.), but there are also some tasty new foods coming into season.

For starters, greens are finally in season. During the month of September we managed to find very few greens: we had arugula once and verdolagas (Portulaca) a couple of times. In the last week or two, though, a diversity of greens have become available: we’ve gotten arugula, lettuce, swiss chard, tatsoi, pac choi, mizuna, and mustards. In fact, we’ve gotten more greens from our CSA than we know what to do with! We need to come up with some creative ways to preserve them (maybe some kind of pesto-like sauce that we can freeze?).

Marci got a nice diversity of foods at tonight’s Santa Cruz River Farmer’s Market. She came home with apples, apple cider, a watermelon, a large pumpkin, an onion, potatoes, sweet potatoes, garlic, Anaheim chiles, eggs, okra, wheat flour, and tomatoes. The overlap of watermelons and pumpkins is a good indication of the transition in seasons we’re currently in. We’re trying to appreciate the diversity of local foods available right now, because it may not last for much longer! While our climate allows for year-round growing, we can’t expect to have the same variety of foods from December through February.

At our CSA on Tuesday we bought a pack of beef liver, as an experiment. I’ve never cooked liver in my life, and I don’t have the faintest clue what to do with it. Marci wants to cook it with bacon, but then again she wants to cook everything with bacon.

Hot on the heels of our mesquite flour tortillas experiment last week comes another creation: carob mesquite flour tortillas. I used basically the same recipe as before, but with some very slight differences.

For one thing, we used whole wheat flour which we had ground ourselves. Our friend Chi gave us (on permanent loan) a hand grinder she had gotten (also on permanent loan) from a mutual friend of ours. It was a cinch to set up in our kitchen, and Marci set to work grinding some wheatberries we had stored up from our CSA. She ground them twice, yielding flour which was fairly fine but still coarser than the flour we’d been buying from the San Xavier Co-op. To this flour we added both carob and mesquite flour. Since we were almost out of olive oil and happened to have some bacon grease saved in the refrigerator, we used equal parts olive oil and bacon grease (rather than just olive oil).

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour (hand-ground wheatberries from the Tucson CSA)
  • 1/4 cup mesquite flour (from our tree)
  • 1/4 cup carob flour (donated by our friends Chi and Rodd; from trees in Tucson)
  • 10 dried chiltepines, crushed by hand (from Native Seeds/SEARCH)
  • 1 teaspoon salt (from Sonora, Mexico)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil (from Queen Creek Olive Mill in Phoenix)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons bacon grease (the bacon was from a ranch in Cochise)
  • 3/4 cup water

Just as before, I first mixed the dry ingredients (wheat flour, mesquite flour, carob flour, salt, and chiltepines) in a bowl, then added the olive oil and bacon grease and mixed well with a fork. I gradually mixed in the water, and then kneaded the dough for about three minutes. I let the dough sit for fifteen minutes, covered, in the bowl. I next divided the dough into eight separate balls, and again let these sit for fifteen minutes, covered, in the bowl. Because the flour I used was coarser than before, I ended up having to knead the dough a few extra minutes at this point in order to work the gluten sufficiently (otherwise the dough wouldn’t stick together). I heated a metal comal over our gas stove on medium heat, and rolled a dough ball out onto a floured cutting board until the dough was about an eighth of an inch thick. Finally, I placed the tortilla on the hot comal, let it cook for about 10 seconds, flipped it and cooked it for 10 more seconds, flipped it again and cooked it on the original side for 10 more seconds, and then flipped it one more time and cooked it for 10 more seconds. I repeated this for the other seven balls. Don’t let the tortilla sit on the comal for very long, as mesquite flour burns very easily!

We thought these tortillas were truly delicious, and even better than the mesquite tortillas! The carob added a subtle but noticeable chocolate-like undertone.

We made tacos using:

  • Eggs (from our chickens) fried in olive oil
  • Squash blossoms
  • Grilled onions and Anaheim chile
  • Tomatoes
  • Fresh greens (lettuce, arugula and tatsoi)
  • From our pre-local stockpile: Guacamaya hot sauce from Mexico (on my tacos) or ranch dressing (on Marci’s)

We also had potatoes and sweet potatoes baked with olive oil and salt. Yum!

For the past week we have been taking a mini-break from our strict regimen as we decide how to move forward for the long term. We ate bread, chocolate (fair trade organic dark chocolate) and sushi (more on that later) and each indulged in non-local treats almost daily. Chris ate out twice for lunch and once for dinner (he had pizza, which he had really been missing), and I had coffee three times. I also ate some Skittles at work where people seem to be incessantly stocking every corner with forbidden treats. But even with all of these deviations we are still eating a mostly local diet. And we are extremely happy to continue with our experiment, especially since our “treats” were mostly disappointing and expensive.

We fully expected to be reluctant to return to our local diet after reminding our taste buds how the other half lives. I was looking forward to eating Asian food as much as Chris was looking forward to pizza, but both meals were unsatisfying. I don’t know the details of the pizza fiasco, but I do know why Sushi Ten disappointed me: The iceburg lettuce salad was sadly devoid of color, nutrients, and flavor; the miso soup tasted old and drab; and the soba noodles basically tasted like undercooked pasta with overcooked vegetables drowned in soy sauce. The squid salad tasted fresh and yummy, and Chris’ salmon roll was satisfying. But overall it was not the party our taste buds were anticipating. We have been far more impressed with our own cooking than with Sushi Ten’s offerings that night. And it’s not that we’re spectacular cooks (although I’d argue that Chris is a spectacular cook); it’s just that our food is fresh and actually tastes like food. The flavors in our home-cooked meals are diverse, distinct, and rich, unlike the conglomerate of meek tastes and textures dictated by restaurant foods that are either harvested too early so they can weather the 2,000 mile journey to Tucson, or are produced en-masse days, or weeks, before being served.

I’m not saying that all processed, non-local foods are unappealing to us. We fully enjoyed the chocolate bar, for example. We don’t intend to deny ourselves every luxury in the long run, and as we determine how we will redefine the rules of our experiment we are allowing for regular special treats. The following is a description of our modified rules for the experiment for the near future.

We will be allowing ourselves balsamic vinegar (eventually we hope to start making our own), yeast (until we have both a steady source of flour and a working sourdough starter), and spices (in moderation) on a regular basis. We feel that these items will greatly enhance our enjoyment of our food without compromising the spirit of our experiment. We will allow ourselves to eat the food that we still have in our fridge and freezer from before we started the experiment. Also, if someone visits us, bearing gifts of food local to their point of origin, we will gladly accept- and eat- the food. For example, my parents gave Chris a lot of organic honey from near their home in L.A. We will be devouring that honey! In addition, we will allow ourselves one treat each (i.e. a chocolate bar, a cup of coffee, a danish) every week. And we will occasionally eat a non-local meal if we are invited to a friend’s house or feel the deep desire for a night away from the stove. It should still be easy to eat at least 95% local foods, which is our long-term goal.

Now that we know we can thrive on a 99.9% local diet we don’t see any reason, save convenience, for eating any other way. Of course, sometimes convenience speaks louder than good health or flavor. But generally speaking we are proud to have successfully shifted the focus of our eating habits away from international corporations and toward the people in our community. We are excited to seek new food items from our region, and we look forward to experimenting with making our own vinegar, ice cream, dried fruit, yogurt, and sourdough starter. We’ll be continuing to blog as we make new discoveries.

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