I just finished listening to the audio book, The Omnivore's Dilemma. I must say, it was slightly more than I bargained for, but I have had another epiphany about making choices. Being part of a society or culture can be a means of simplifying our options and decision-making processes. As it happens, however, many of the best possible options have been removed from our collective schema (removal in this case powered by the food industry and certain farm subsidies). One of my self-proclaimed missions in life is to take back my options so that I can make well-informed choices. While not everyone need be a vegetarian, I think it's worth taking time to evaluate what we put in our bodies and where it comes from in order to understand its impact and take back our choices from the predominating food culture.
Our decision to quit eating CAFO meat has been baffling to some. Well, I guess the reasoning is based on the idea that where much is given, much is required. I have been given much. In the last two years, I have learned a ton about food cultures, nutrition, farming systems, sustainability, and the food industry. I have a garden behind my house, a farmer's market within walking distance, and some means by which to obtain local, vitamin-rich foods that are sustainably-grown. Because I have all of these assets, I feel I should use them well.
On the less philosophical side of things, I have enjoyed being forced to be creative with my cooking. I have learned to bake delicious fish, make pesto from home-grown ingredients, create my own dressings and sauces, produce two kinds of cheese, and rock my bread machine. I have never enjoyed preparing and eating food so much. Next, I will conquer yeast breads minus the machinery.
So, if your in the mood for a culinary concoction, drop on by and have a bite of fresh-tomato and arugula pasta or some warm bread with homemade strawberry jam (minus the high-fructose corn syrup, of course :-).