It all started with a little video of Alice Waters on YouTube. It was a horrible home video, but she was making vinaigrette. She was pounding the garlic into a paste wth a mortar and pestle. Something clicked, my brain went, 'o, this is what that tool is for'. Watching that video, all of the sudden all the dressings on the shelf at the grocery store started to taste bad. If Alice can do it, so can I. And so my experiment began.
As I meandered through the book section in the thrift store, I found a copy of French Women for All Seasons. I decided it was some sort of sign, and I bought the book. The book has weekly menus and other wonderful things, and I started to get inspired to write my own menus. Every Friday night, I sit down after the babies have gone off to dreamland, and I write my menu for the week. Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner. After finishing the menu, I put together a list of items that I need, from each location I will get them. So, all meats and cheeses? The butchers. Fresh produce? The farmers market and so on. I buy bulk ingredients from the grocery store. I bake all the bread I need during the week. What I didn't realize before I started this experiment, was that I wasting so much money on sub par food and ingredients. Bread is so easy to make, and yet I was paying $5.00 and up a loaf. I was trading convenience for quality. So I bought a 25 lb. bag of flour. This will make at least 50 loaves of good bread. The bag of flour costed me about $7.00. This adds up to about $0.14 a loaf. See? Why are we paying so much money for something that is so easy to make? We've lost the romance of making our own food. We've traded true love for an industry product that boasts itself as more convienent. Food should be slow. Thought out and imperfectly assembled. It's a glass of wine, enjoyed while the meat roasts. It's playing with your children while the bread rises. And it's making love while the mousse sets in the fridge. It most certainly should not be slap some meat(which you don't know where it is from) in a pan, toast a bun that never grows old, and spread some sugar with a bit of tomato in it. I do not want to eat that, do you?
This is the first in a series about food and meal planning that I will be doing on this blog. I plan to share recipes and the menus I have been creating weekly with you so you might have a little spring board to begin your own meal planning.
Be creative. Try new things. And don't be afraid to get burned.