The Goodness Of Wholeness - Phillard's kitchen Blog at - 330471

Phillard's kitchen

The Goodness of Wholeness 
Jul. 22, 2014 4:21 pm 
Updated: Sep. 29, 2014 10:06 pm
Or wholesomeness... When I buy fruits and vegetables locally from a farmers market or a local grower, I feel much better. I am not entirely sure why, but I do. The food tastes better to my tastebuds, as well, while filling me with a deeper satisfaction than I could get were I to cook with vegetables with unknown origins from my local supermarkets.

It's possible it's all a placebo effect - kind of like when we go camping and prepare an evening meal. We were out all day having fun, had simple sandwiches and crisps for lunch with a can of soda or a bottle of lemonade or tea, and we come back to the site and cook up a hot and delicious meal. I made a pot of clam chowder during one of last year's camping trips from local ingredients we had purchased, and clams we dug up ourselves from the sandy surf of an Oregon beach. I can't tell you how delicious that soup was! But a couple of months later, long after we had returned from camping, I made the same soup in my home on my stove with the same kind of ingredients, and the soup was only "Okay." Well, it was delicious, but it lacked the luster of that first vat and certainly didn't satisfy my soul the way it did on that camping trip.

Anyway, before I go into a tangent, I have recently discovered that the only ingestibles (food) more satisfying than that which comes from my own garden is food that came from my proverbial neighbor's garden. When something comes from a local grower, ranging from heirloom tomatoes all the way to squashes and everything in between, I get a sort of tingling sensation in my soul, for lack of a better explanation. This tingling is the surge of satisfaction I get from knowing the "dirt of my land," as well as the efforts of my loosely-nearby neighbors, went into growing, nurturing and harvesting these local commodities.

All of these things culminate to give my palette a more enjoyable experience. Things taste better, and I do not have this constant, uneducated worry about the much talked-about GMO fears or chemical spraying or pesticides and etc.

I write this today because, in my own humble option, there is indeed a "Wholeness" in this form of eating. I am not the most educated man on the planet, or even in my local circles. But I like to think I have some grasp, however tentative, on the basics of our common economy. Knowing that my money, when I purchase local goods from a local vendor, goes into the pockets of said local vendor, that vendor's wealth is increased. Much of that money may be used to pay other local vendors that helped to supply him/her with their ability to provide me with the goods that I required, and from there a cascade effect is created. My local currency is distributed outward in an ever-reaching ripple effect, where the most prominently affected person is the original vendor who, hopefully, put their heart and soul into the goods and/or services I required of them that they provided to me. That currency they get to keep for their own needs/wants perhaps goes into the pockets of other local vendors so that they, as people like you and I, can gain what they need. From this endless cycle of exchange, a strong, local circle is crafted, and from this first circle, other circles are created, and we can see these circles come together to form links and bonds that bring us together as a society through the common bond of need, desire and community. In this is created, ideally, a wholesome "Wholeness" we get to experience.

And from all of this knowledge, when I make a pot of stewed tomatoes and zucchini with fresh locally harvested veggies and herbs, my soul is satisfied by this "Wholeness." Perhaps I don't often ponder where my 10 dollars went to and how it's helping people live their lives in our community, but the general feelings of goodness are there within me, and it feels good to focus on the positive for a change.
Jul. 22, 2014 4:33 pm
I see your town has a garlic festival soon. Is it worth an hour or two drive?
Jul. 22, 2014 5:23 pm
very nice blog phillip. I agree, nothing beats growing something and then cooking it. it tastes better. . I can guarantee nothing tastes better then fresh caught bass on a cast-iron pan over a sandy beach fire. I also like to collect wild greens for a salad to use as well. we have very large mussels here btw.
Jul. 22, 2014 10:25 pm
Garlic Festival emphasizes "Elephant Garlic," which is a fun and quirky little festival. If you like local things, this is fun to visit. There are quite a few activities, including the grounds for the festival itself. One side is local vendors coming from all over the local area, the other side is local food vendors and food carts making garlic themes food, as well as garlic/food novelties and kitchen supplies and accessories. Some quirks are the garlic flavored ice cream stands and the garlic beer... For more info on it, there is a website dedicated to the festival and all of the three days activities are listed.
Jul. 22, 2014 10:31 pm
I love the sound of that cast iron cooking right out of the ocean! And those wild greens sound amazing...! One oft most favorite commodities has to be the chanterelles found up in the local forests all around my area. I found a little place outside of town that opens a chanterelle season every year, inviting the mushroom hunters to sell their product to them so they can sell it to the public. It's a perfect example of the type of "full circle" economy I was talking about. Plus chanterelles, to me, are the perfect mushroom to use in the delightful Hungarian Mushroom Soup...! Perfect for taste, texture and color if you want a real golden soup! Speaking of mussels, I just harvesting a couple hundred last year over the course of a week and cooked them every way I could fathom. My favorite was the steaming in white wine and garlic and serving with a delightful roasted red pepper and pine nut aioli. Simple and delicious, the flavors combined perfectly to really accent the flavor of the sea, which also helped to accent the tang of the wine, the savory of the garlic, the sweet of the pepper and the earthiness of the pine nuts...
Jul. 23, 2014 10:27 am
Thank you, Phillip, for responding and the additional information on the festival.
Jul. 23, 2014 3:19 pm
Nice blog, Philip! My husband and I also like to shop at local Farmer's Markets. In fact, when we travel he has them scouted out before we leave Indiana. We've been to some great ones in San Francisco, Nappa Valley, Silverthorne CO, Tennessee, and Virginia to name a few. We go to our local markets several times a month. Like you, we like that our money spent stays local.
Jul. 25, 2014 9:57 am
Philip, It's a joy and a treat to read this blog. I share the same feelings of earthy delight when I get homegrown, non GMO, non sprayed veggies. Not only are we eating better/fresher food but we're spending locally as well. This cuts out the big corporations that are trying to manipulate us into buying GMO, pesticide tainted produce. Great blog....
Jul. 29, 2014 4:55 pm
Thank you Molly! That's an awesome idea I'll remember myself, now - scout out the local farmer's markets so I can always eat local - and it would be the absolute BEST way to get a real taste of the destination - getting local food right from the source, and keeping money in the pockets of the people providing the goods :)
Jul. 29, 2014 4:56 pm
Thank you Lace! Down with Monsanto! Up with backyard gardens and sustainable, local farming!
Sep. 29, 2014 10:06 pm
I am trying to grow my own any one have raw peanut seed where I can buy my own so I can plant my own. email me the info and name and phone so I can order some What about the cashews and other nuts to make the nut butters. I sure want to grow some peanuts so I can make some boiled and roasted and also my own peanut butter.
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About Me
I have been cooking and baking since I can remember, being taught by various sources, like parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, friends and on-the-go professionals. I still love it!
My favorite things to cook
Home-cooked meals are the way to go, but still presentable in a way that doesn't make the food look like slop. I like cooking with meats, now especially grilling in smoker BBQ's. I love thick and creamy stews and soups, especially in the winter season. Delicious delectables are always on my mind, too!
My favorite family cooking traditions
Traditions? Probably Thanksgiving and Christmas. I love both of those holidays. They allow people to shine in their newly acquired cooking abilities. Family from all over gets to add a hand at the stove and ovens, and you'll be surprised at how much you can teach...and learn!
My cooking triumphs
I recently succeeded in making several perfect sheets of toffee. The consistency was perfect, not too hard, no burnt-flavor. Topping it off with just the right kind of chocolate was easy enough, but many loved it, and I have made it many times since.
My cooking tragedies
Oh, the same with Toffee - I did not cook it long enough the first time, I'm afraid. So much butter and sugar, and 30 dollars worth of chocolate wasted. I can admit it was a humbling experience...I say, keep it simple with the ingredient, especially while making something that is consumed so greedily by others :)
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