Monday, September 22, 2014

Not Just Frugality, but Sustainability: Almost Free Meal and Enough for Leftovers

Okay, please don't get discouraged. Not all of my food blogs will be on foraged, hunted and gardened food, but this one is. One thing I have noticed is that in being frugal, you very often end up helping the environment, without even really trying. Now, you may not be much of an environmentalist and that's okay by me. I'm more frugal than I am environmental. However, even though I started with frugality, I ended up patting myself on the back for being a good citizen and practicing sustainability.

Now, you may not see any importance in sustainability. Many people don't. I didn't either until I read a few books on the subject. Did you know that some say we spend about 10 calories in fossil fuels for every calorie produced? That's an incredible number. And completely non-sustainable. Sometimes when people use the word sustainability, you may envision some tree-huggers living in the woods and having ragged clothes and living in a commune, but we need to all care about this, we all need to care about sustainability. Spending 10 calories in energy for every calorie we consume is ridiculous; just think if you did that personally. You would die in short order. We use fossil fuels like there is no tomorrow. If you have never read on the subject, here is an article that goes over some of it:

Our food is amazingly connected to oil. We plow our fields with tractors which use oil, we transport food with trucks and boats and cars which use oil. Oil is a finite resource. It seems ridiculous that we are trying to squeeze oil now out of shale. Anyway, I said all that to say this: the food in the above picture did use a little oil. My husband tilled the ground with gasoline and I tilled in between rows with a tiller and that took gas. I used no fertilizers or anything like that. I did cook it on an electric stove. So, I don't know how many energy calories this took to grow and cook per calorie produced, but I'd venture to guess it is much better than the 10:1 ratio of the food in the stores. Let's add to that that most of it was fresh picked and cooked this very day, so it is packed with nutrients.

We have clockwise from top left:
1. Garden green beans.
2. Garden mashed potatoes.
3. Vegetable medley from the garden of okra, squash and tomatoes.
4. Venison hunted and processed by my husband and I and Hen of the Woods mushrooms foraged by me.

So, not only was this meal almost free for us (aside from freezer storage for the venison and mushrooms and electricity to cook it and gasoline to till it and butter and spices to cook it in) but it is very sustainable. It is also very nutritious. There are also enough leftovers for lunch for one for the meat and veggies and leftovers for 4 on the potatoes (which I will cook up with something tomorrow night).

So, almost free for us and much, much less costly for the world at large. :)

1 comment:

  1. Isn't it an amazing feeling to put a dinner on the table that you and your family together grew and prepared! You share some wonderful tips, and ideas for living as close to the land as we can in a gasoline-powered world!