Sunday, May 24, 2009

The 100 mile diet… or our own variation : Part 2

Good morning to all of you.

So as I mentioned a few days back, my husband and I have decided to go for a summer attempt at the 100 mile diet challenge. Well the challenge date has been set : July 1st! On that date, we will start a 2 months 100 mile challenge in the hopes of living a simpler life this summer, finding ways to lower our carbon footprint and getting to know the place we live in and the local growers and businesses that make it work!

Why July 1st? Well first, we will be moving into our new home that day so what better time to start on a new challenge. Second, we will already be playing the “empty out the fridge and cupboards” game to try and not have too much to move so we will need to restock anyway. And third, everything will be in full swing here for the Quebec growing season so all the farmer’s markets and food stands will be out and ready for us.

Why 2 months? Because as I have mentioned before, I’m really worried about the fact that I don’t eat meat and my husband eats very little. Quebec is not exactly the grain and legumes growing capital of the world. What does this mean? So far, our only protein sources would be eggs and dairy. We can’t exactly start eating a pound of cheese a day so we may have to get awfully creative.


We decided to start making a list in the next few weeks of staples, foods we would want to KNOW where to get before the diet starts. What prompted this is that we were walking around the farmer’s market (although it’s more a flower market right now) and came upon a stand for a local winery that was having a tasting of all their other wine and fruit derived products.

Vignoble Le Petit Pré is only 20 minutes east of downtown and not only has award winning wines, but a selection of preserves, non-pasteurized multi-flower honey and a line of traditionally crafted vinegars. See, vinegars like balsamic, red wine and white wine are things I use almost everyday in my kitchen and I never even thought of “where” I would get them once the challenge started! We also bought a jar of their honey and were floored. Such an amazing product and only a few miles away since their stand will be open, only a few minutes walk from our place, for the whole summer.

So it is a start!

As I am discovering hidden places in my area for little 100-mile-treasures, I will share them with you. Hoping to inspire you to go out and discover the little local delicacies your corner of the world has to offer!

Do you have favourite local spots?


Craig Baird said...

It is amazing what you can find just within 100 miles of your home. Wine, berries, bison meat (at least here in Alberta), honey, everything! It is really great.

The other great thing about buying local is that you begin to know the people you are buying from and you help to create relationships so you know where your food comes from and what comes into it.

My wife and I will take a locally made food product over something from a huge corporation any day of the week.

Brady said...

I totally agree with Craig! Have you looked for any farmer's markets in your area? That would be a great source for fresh veggies of all types.

Also, beans are very easy to grow. You may consider doing some container gardens while you transition to your new house. It would be a great way to bring some food with you and you just can't get any more local than your own garden.

You can always expand the garden to outside once you've gotten a chance to get settled, though being in Canada you might miss most of the growing season this year. I guess that's what makes container gardening such a good option!

Yanic said...

Craig : We have a bison farm near our house too. Just have to make sure what they eat is local as well! I plan on exploring a few small local farms for my husband to have some local meats. I don't eat them at all. But that is okay! Between the dairy and the eggs, I should be fine for protein.

I've been doing lots of research on what is around. Been in contact with a few grain grower associations for the area. Looking forward to find those that will sell on the individual scale!

Brady : Welcome!

Yes, we practically live at the farmer's markets during the summer. We barely ever go to the grocery store while the growing season is under way! We also have another whole other plot where beans and peas, lettuces, brussel sprouts, collard greens, tomatoes and cucumbers are being planted. We plan on having balcony herb gardens to transfer to our new place! We are also huge into home preserves so we are looking forward to that!

Small Footprints said...

What a great idea. I feel so lucky because we have all kinds of farms, roadside stands and even tailgate markets so we are, quite easily, able to eat local. There is no comparison in taste ... and I think there must be a huge nutritional benefit as well. Together with my little patio "farm", we should be in produce heaven.

BTW ... a couple of your comments have been featured on my blog today.

Have a great weekend!

Small Footprints

Yanic said...

Hello Small Footprints!

I wish we could do it for longer, but with our growing season being so short, it would become quite a challenge come november, and not in the good way!

But I have a feeling that we will have a lot of fun and find some great local products that we will continue to use past our challenge date!