Hello fellow food lovers. I’m Carol… originally from Massachusetts, lived in Chicago the last 8 years, and am now residing in the great (tiny) state of Rhode Island with my husband, Ric (yes, with no “k”). We love food and we love to cook.
Up until the summer of 2012, we were vegetarians. My introduction back into the delicious world of meat-eating? Bacon. Duh. And when we had the incredible opportunity to work on a farm in the summer of 2013, we began eating a lottttt more meat. Like, a lot. (The farmer’s mother-in-law was a fabulous cook from Nicaragua and made us delicious meals every day with meat from the farm). While we still love to cook and eat vegetarian, meat has become a part of our daily life. We prefer to use meat that comes from local farms that raise animals humanely, with natural diets, no antibiotics, and no added hormones. (See this post for some details on why I won’t buy or eat just any meat).
After going back to meat-eating, the blog needed a makeover. I changed the name from “the Not Quite Vegan” to “Farm to Table” because I want to write primarily about recipes using ingredients that you might find at a farmers market or from your local farmer, or even that you grow yourself. Even if you live in a little apartment in the city, you can still grow things! It might just be a little basil plant, but it’s something. That’s where the tagline “give love to the work of your hands” comes in. I found this in Wendell Berry’s book Bringing it to the Table. This is a great book about farming and food that I highly recommend (actually, I recommend anything ever written by Berry. I’m obsessed). Berry quotes author Eric Gill: “Every man is called to give love to the work of his hands. Every man is called to be an artist.” While I wish Gill was a little bit more gender inclusive (come on, what about the ladies?!), I love the idea. Berry applies this concept to the family farm, where men and women, boys and girls, can “answer that call to be an artist, to learn to give love to the work of their hands.”
I think we can all answer that call, whether we have a farm of our own or just a little planter on our balcony. We can give love to the work of our hands by planting the seed, watching it grow, tending to the plant, and finally, harvesting. We can give love to the work of our hands by mixing ingredients, kneading the bread dough, crafting recipes from scratch from fresh, healthy, whole ingredients. Combining just the right ingredients and flavors for drool-worthy smells wafting from your kitchen while it cooks. Savoring every bite of what you’ve created, around the table with friends or family. We can all be artists.
I hope that my blog is helpful for those of you who are looking to incorporate more whole foods into your diet, to try new things, to know where your food comes from, and to love what you eat! As the fabulous Julia Child always said, bon appétit!