Monday, April 23, 2012

Occupy your kitchen.

Well, once again I had a great idea for a slogan and I decided to not do anything about it and someone beat me to the chase.

Right now there are huge May first Occupy rallies planned across the country.  So much of the Occupy movement has directed anger and blame at the banks, particularly the big ones that were bailed out by the government.  But it still seems like only a very small minority of these protests are directed at what I view to be an equally evil villain, the food coroporations, in particular the folks at Monsanto.  I had the phrase "occupy your kitchen" running through my head for some time as a means of expressing this and it looks like someone from the Huffington post had already done an article about it here.

In fact it seems like the most radical thing we can do is cook our own food with locally sourced ingredients. . . but cooking is the problem.  Many people want to buy local but when you start to live this way you realize the world is not made of boneless skinless chicken breasts and Campbell's soup.  There is an art to cooking each part of an animal.  A shank is different from a shoulder.  All this knowledge has become a sort of unattainable alchemy to the modern individual and it does require a totally different approach to food, community, and convenience.  I laugh that one of the cheapest, easiest parts of my food routine that I call my "fast food" is the thing that takes the longest to make.  My bread is 24 hours start to finish, but once made it is truly fast food.  But to cook this way one has to constantly be thinking of the future and planning.

I think we would be amazed at what a school of virtue is found in the kitchen.  Patience, planning, reverence, attention to detail.  All these are waiting for you in a pot of stock.

So what we really need right now are skill sharing seminars,  cooking classes,  maybe even real food tastings on the street to get people's interest.   I hope we see these things blossom out of a movement toward less government subsidized eating.

On a total sidetrack however, my friend Jamie recently made a point about how so many people find the Eucharist to be such a crazy Catholic teaching but that if we can get people to wax poetic, gush and become ecstatic over real bread (not wonderbread)  than maybe, just maybe, it will seem less crazy that yes, I truly worship something that looks, smells, feels, and tastes just like bread.


Mrs. H. said...

Not long ago, I was with a group of young and not so young women, and the subject of food came up. It came up because one of the women mentioned that I bake my own bread. Not one of those women knew how to cut up a chicken, nor did they care to know. They thought the whole idea was "gross". A couple of them said: "If it doesn't come wrapped in plastic and go into the microwave, I don't eat it!" I chose not to argue with would be a waste of time....but I couldn't help thinking that they probably wouldn't like real food even if they had it. Like one of Sarah's old boyfriends who had never had anything but box brownies....the first time he had them at our house he thought they had too much flour. Guess he missed that chemical taste.

Anonymous said...

Wow - you hit the nail on the head, and I think there are a lot of concerned leaning this way. My hope is that Farmer's Markets will start to provide this on a grass roots level and that it will grow.

Laura said...

Food hubs.

Anonymous said...

I am occupying my kitchen (I like your phrase) and I am commenting to ask about your sourdough bread. I began my sd experience using nourishing traditions and my loaves were bricking. Then I started making it using the bread bible's method and I find that too intensive with my busy brood for what we actually eat at the end. Anyways, would you be willing to share your method in a post or email me? I use a liquid starter re: sandor katz's wild fermentation. I have been making a regular yeast hearth bread in my mixer for our daily bread and I have never been very successful in kneading w/ out over flour-ing the dough. Thanks for considering. Peace, Sarah

Kristin said...

Just stumbled on your blog - love it and your garden :)