It is tough to keep it local and fresh in the Winter. The best advice I can offer is to make yourself local to some great fresh food! Here's to holidays in hot places. Yes, this method for keeping the diet local may rip your ecological footprint to shreds but it is a delicious endeavor none-the-less.
Once I bid my farewells to the lovely Nourish Your Soul ladies, I had some time to do a little more exploring around the Balenbouche Estate grounds and also made myself useful in the kitchen. After a tough afternoon of reading in a hammock, Tanja and I set off for the farm, located on the property and we did a little harvesting.
The joy! The bliss! Eating fresh, greens and tomatoes straight from the earth in January!
So what was the result of this little harvest adventure? Tons of tomatoes, a great big bag of mixed greens, some yellow chard, a bundle of cilantro, some unrecognizable wild but safe to eat plants, a squash and some purple basil. As I picked the soil off my flip flops, I noticed all this glimmering glass-like stuff going on. I asked Tanja about it and apparently the soil of this part of St. Lucia is filled with quartz crystals. Some Rastas (and other believers, myself included) believe that these crystals carry a lot of energy in them and that contributes to the good vibes of St. Lucia. I'll drink to that (refer to dessert below).
The challenge, once we had collected all these goodies, was what was I going to do with all them. See most often when I go to the store or market, I have my shopping list in hand and know what I need to find and get. That is how it goes when you live in a city. This was my friends. was an experience in going to the earth to see what she was up for sharing with me and then having to figure out what to do with her offerings. Check this bounty!
- A tomato,basil salad with balsamic vinegar and chopped almonds and hazelnuts
- Cilantro Pesto
- Sprouted Quinoa Bread
- A mixed greens salad
- And of course, the Caribbean version of The Soup That Eats Like A Meal.
And for dessert? Rum of course. We were in St. Lucia!
All in all it was a fantastic lesson in eating based on what is available, nature provided the shopping list. This was a true exercise in improvisation and creativity - now if only I could go out to my backyard (or if only I had a backyard) that offered me up a feast worth of food in the middle of January. One day... soon.