Eating well on a hungry planet

21 May

It’s Saturday morning, and I’ve just returned from my weekly excursion to the farmer’s market.  It’s a favorite weekly ritual.  I get up early enough to beat the crowds and crave the coffee and bakery treats at my favorite booths.  I have favorite goofy old farmers in overalls.  I tend to shop by color and end up with a wonderful variety that’s a little different every week.  This year I can tell the climate is odd because we’re weeks behind – just getting into asparagus and I’ve yet to see a garlic scape!

Colorful produce of the Madison farmers' market.

As I loaded my greenery into the fridge I recalled recently seeing an exhibit showcasing the photo art from Peter Menzel’s and Faith D’Aluisio’s book “Hungry Planet: What The World Eats”.  The photos were beautiful – and thought provoking.  The simple picture of a family’s pile of groceries says so much about culture – how we spend time with family, what we enjoy, what we value.  I passed along the wall of photos:

These images shamelessly lifted from "Hungry Planet". Please check out the authors at http://www.menzelphoto.com/books/hp.php

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I came to Japan and thought “wow, they eat some crazy fish parts!”

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I came to Chad and wondered “how on earth does a pile of millet nourish a family ?!”

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I came to America and did a double take “where’s the food??”

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The picture was full of boxes.  Stacks and piles of processed food containers – mass produced to be eaten on the go, without prep, without thought, without time in the kitchen or at the table.

After seeing this it struck me – no wonder so many dinner guests chuckle at the oddity when they open my fridge.  My roommate is into this crazy frugivorous life style and I just get consumed by the delicious rainbow of fresh local produce.  Between the two of us, there’s scarcely a package to be found.  There’s a lot of washing and chopping and prepping – there’s a lot of compost and sticky fruit juice on most surfaces – there’s also a lot of great conversation across the kitchen counter – and there’s a lot of real food in our fridge.

Eat this – hungry planet!

Inside my fridge. What's inside yours?


What’s in your fridge?  Challenge yourself / your family this summer – while the fresh veggies are pouring in see how many fresh foods you can fit in your fridge without the boxes!  Post a comment – share how it goes.  Share new food discoveries!

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