Craft, stitchin' and sustainable living

Friday, September 9, 2011


As time goes on (dare I say, as I become more of an adult?) I've noticed myself becoming increasingly foodie.  I'm not only interested in good food and cooking, but also where my food comes from, how it was produced and what the effects the process had on animals and the environment.

As a child, my family ate pretty healthy meals.  There was a lot of brown rice and veggies involved, and not so much meat.  When I left home, I had a five year period of being a vegetarian, then as my body developed different nutritional needs (in all honesty, I was a bad vegetarian and ate lots of carbs, not enough protein), and as my pay packet grew with my career, meals became more and more centred on meat.
My grandma's recipe Tomato Relish
Then, probably in my mid 20s, I started eating less meat again, for both ethical and health reasons.  I became very aware of ethical and sustainable farming practices, and started choosing free range and organic options over your conventional supermarket varieties of meat and other products.

Now, into my early 30s, I am more aware of my food choices than ever.  We still eat meat, but probably only every third night, and we buy it from a sustainable, free-range meat supplier who has a direct link with the farmers who produce it (Sydney-siders, check out Urban Food Market).  As you might have seen in an earlier post, we joined a veggie co-op, and we get a fantastic delivery of farmer's market fruit and veg every week.  We also try to waste less food, coming up with new recipes to use up whatever in our fridge really needs using up.  We make preserves from gluttons of fruit and stock from roast chicken carcasses.  It's not just less-wasteful, it's also thrifty and yummy!

Inspirational reading for sustainable foodies
With pretty much every food item now, I start to wonder... could I make this? (just like us stitchy people think when we walk into a clothes store).  This has been encouraged by some of my favourite books on the topic of sustainable eating and living, such as Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver and Frugavore by Arabella Forge.  Likewise, we've become addicted to tv shows like River Cottage and Gourmet Farmer, both about city folk who move to the country to grow and rear their own food.

I'm not about to pack up and move to the country; I like my inner-city lifestyle too much.  But I would like to continue to learn about more sustainable ways of living, whether it be by making my own cleaning products or eating more peasant style foods (which are often more nutritious and economical as the same time as being more tasty).  I'll continue sharing my learnings here.


  1. Frugavore sounds like a great book!

  2. ...strange...reading your post was just like reading about 'me' & my food history...
    Am off to read more of your posts!