Friday, May 14, 2010

100 Mile Challenge, Mission BC

When I caught the "100 Mile Challenge: Mission BC" on the Food Network I was constantly surprised at how (I don't want to use the word stupid... or uneducated... maybe this one...) BLIND they were to the bounty they have near the coast!

One family didn't know that citrus fruit grew within their 100miles... really.
Only one or 2 families of the 6 bothered to research and create a sour for making bread. Some of the others tried and failed...
If you're craving tea so badly, why don't you go harvest some wild mint and dew berries, dry them and then steep them?? A wonderful mint berry tea! Right there! In Alberta, I would use mint and rose hips :)
None of them realized that there's TONS of old French pastry techniques when it comes to making cakes WITHOUT chemical leaveners! Whipped Egg Whites!! The simplest solution is often the best. And I'm not talking about just Angel Food. No no... ANY cake! One mother used local carbonated soda water to try and leaven a cake... I can't say it was anything I wanted to try...
They have direct access to the ocean, which gave them an abundance of fresh seafoods and salt. AND ocean plant life! Some of the most nutrient rich plants come from the ocean, and not one of them asked a single question about it...

Local eating is not some new and crazy phenomenon... How do you think people lived before the spice trade route?? Or the "discovery" of strange cultures and their native fruits, vegetables, and cooking methods??

Anyways, I can tell you right now that if I had been able to do that challenge, it would have been a mighty different experience.
Of course, I've been a foodie for many years now and working in the baking industry has definitely given me a foot up when it comes to "alternative" cooking methods... but nothing that a quick Google search or library book couldn't have provided them.

Of course there are things I would miss... the BIG ones being Dark Chocolate and Spices. More so spices than anything...
I LOVE spices!!! I love everything about them... the taste, the smells, the comforting feeling you get from a hot cup of Chai Tea, the bite of a spiced cookie... that would be my downfall.
I suppose I would be relearning how to use herbs and perhaps create some new local spices...

Hmmmmmmmmmm, local spices... Boreal Forest, what secrets do you hold?? ;)

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