Friday, August 6, 2010

The Eat Local Challenge

OK, I'm doin' it. I'm going to eat only local foods for 1 week. It's the Eat Local Challenge and it's designed to encourage and educate people about the benefits of eating foods that aren't shipped in from miles away, generating tons of CO2 and harming the planet. But the planet is not really why I'm doing it. While I would definitely call myself a "treehugger", and very proud of it, my decision to eat local is based on something much more selfish: pure pleasure.

It started with a trip to the St. Paul Farmer's Market, which I LOVE!! It's one of the things I get excited about each Spring, and mourn the loss of every Winter. (Yes, they're open all Winter, but let's face it--it's not the same!) So, the Big B and I went to the market last weekend and filled our bags with more produce than a family of 3 could possibly eat. We always do that. Can't help it. So that evening, while we were preparing dinner, a huge smile crossed my face as I thought of the farmer right here in Minnesota who grew all this amazing food. Beautiful, fresh-picked just that morning...food like it was meant to be. I thought about how nice it would be to eat this way all the time. And that's when my stomach said, "Take the Eat Local challenge!" To which I said, "I can't; it's too hard!" To which Stomach said, "Stop your whining or I'll give you heartburn for a week!" I shut up at that point because I realized I was talking to my stomach. I also realized that it's August, there is bounty to be had at the markets and my co-op, and it really wouldn't be that hard. Would it?

I haven't started yet, but I'm planning to start tomorrow, after I make my morning trip to the Farmer's Market. I shopped the co-op today to get a few things like local cheeses; I'll probably just stick to produce and chicken from the market. I'm going to blog about the whole sordid affair so that you, dear reader, can learn from my fumblings and hopefully do something like this yourself! The planet, and more importantly, your stomach, will thank you!

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