Two and a half acres of land can produce about 250 pounds of beef that is full of heart attack inducing saturated fats and pumped full of antibiotics and growth hormone. Beef production, also, releases more heat trapping green house gases than any other food. Also, factory farms are hideously inhumane. If we are going to mass produce animals for food then perhaps we should be mass producing animals that are lower on the food chain, not mammals that feel joy and suffer very much in the same way humans do.
Two and a half acres of land can produce about 2000 pounds of insects. Insects contain about the same amount of protein as a steak and much less saturated fats. And, unlike mammals and many types of our most popular farmed fish, they are ideal for factory farming because they are resilient and can thrive piled one upon the other. If we all ate insects instead of mammals, there would be a measurable impact on Climate Change. Climate Change will result in more floods, droughts, wars, terrorism and starvation than we have ever experienced in human history. It has become clear that our life choices are effecting everything and everyone on the planet.
Eating insects is, to me, mostly about changing the way we look things. Individual changes in perception can lead to individual changes in behavior which, in turn, can lead to vast cultural transformations. If you, as an individual, can change the way you look at things, you can have a huge impact on the world. We certainly don’t have to start eating insects, to make the world a better place, but we can make an effort to eat in a way that is much more open and aware.
That said, you really gotta try my cicadas. I promise you, they will be scrumptious.
The other day, I was in the dollar store and I bumped into two obese women loading up on foods that were marketed as low calorie. I tried to explain to them that eating an apple or any whole, unprocessed foods is the best way to lose weight. Their situation reminded me of how difficult it is, for the average American, to learn how to eat well because they are constantly being mislead and misinformed by food companies. Here’s a brand called Nature’s Promise (Stop and Shop) hawking a product that is in every way not natural. It should be illegal to have margarine labeled natural or organic because it leads people into believing that its healthy and environmentally friendly, when it’s anything but. Margarine is made from a variety of monocrop derived vegetable oils that are high in omega 6 fatty acids that are implicated for heart disease. This oil is extracted using free radical releasing pressure and heat. Then, the oil is treated with sodium hydroxide to stabilize it. Finally, it is hydrogenated to give it that buttery texture; which converts the oil to a trans fat, which in turn increases your cholesterol, more than any other type of fat. The food companies have literally altered the culture of eating in America. They are, largely, responsible for the epidemic of obesity and heart disease. What can each of us do to restore, revitalize, and reinvent ourselves and our communities to a culture of heathy eating?
Yesterday, I found a gentle natured grey tree frog. The frogs’ populations have been diminishing for three quarters of a century, because many of marshes that they inhabit have been either developed or converted. It didn’t seem to be afraid of me and it’s skin’s delicateness reminded me of how my grandmother’s hands felt, with skin so soft it was as if it floated on her flesh.
Frogs are being threatened because of Climate Change. The ponds that they lay their eggs are drying up. Here are a few ways that you can help save frogs by combating Climate Change: 1)Eat less meat 2)turn lights off in the rooms you are not using 3)Drive smaller cars 4)Take shorter showers 5)Don’t drink bottled water
Here’s a closeup of the horse tail hair and straw bird’s nest that Ami found in my barn. Animals and insects were great architects and designers way before humans ever built anything as modestly sophisticated as a thatch roof. And, the first humans likely learned to sing by emulating song birds. The mysterious intelligence of animals should remind us not to take the killing of them, for any reason at all, lightly, without a thought. Free the bee that is stuck in your house, rather than swatting it. If you are going to eat meat, choose to eat animals that are raised in a humane way. In food animals, we continue the heinous abuses we inflicted on humans through slavery. The ultimate measure of our own humanity, is in how we treat the gentle and defenseless.
The woods that surround our farm is full of wild ramps. I’m so excited to harvest them to make next year’s herb vinegar for our very popular salad.
I spent the last couple of days making a hundred and twenty bottles of wild ramp and chive vinegar. We use the vinegar for our super popular house salad which also features wild edible greens such as mustard garlic.
During the summer and fall we will add herbs basil, sage and grasileria seaweed. Then, we will use the vinegars in our salads during the next year. Oh life is love!
No two salad are likely to be alike at Miya’s because each bottle of salad vinegar is unique.
How does one choose seafood, while the oceans are being overfished? This is an article in Food and Wine Magazine by Paul Greenberg that I found while I was reading his articles to educate myself. Coincidentally, I was mentioned in the article, but that’s not the reason I think you should read it: http://www.foodandwine.com/articles/sustainable-seafood-the-good-news
The above photo is of the sushi that I made with bycatch from the Gulf. Jim Gossen, the owner of Louisiana Seafood Company, jumped through flaming hoops to get the bycatch for me to cook up. The irony is that there’s way too much bycatch but it’s super hard to get.
By the time we are done, we will have 9200 seedlings to plant and protect from deer, rabbits, ground hogs, moles, bugs, and other critters who also like to eat vegetables. All of our farmers are staffers at Miya’s who are passionate food artists and educators. I feel fortunate that I get to work with young people who constantly energize and revitalize this old sushi restaurant of ours.
Pictured above is one of the most popular types of sushi from the year 2028. In the future, people will be eating in a way that is not only healthier for their bodies, but for our whole planet too. They will be eating fewer animals since they will have learned that a plant based diet is the healthiest way to eat; and they will hunt and farm animals in a way that is less cruel. In the future, sushi restaurants will serve mostly vegetarian fare based on super foods such as organic broccoli. The broccoli is rolled in a medley of the most nutrient and fiber dense whole grains and seeds; brown rice, quinoa, oats, and ground flax seeds are included. Quinoa provides a complete protein, flax provides heart healthy Omega 3s, and oats contain more fiber than any other grains. The broccoli is seasoned with a dashi made of kelp which gives it an umami that is delicately reminiscent of seafood. The future is here now, at Miya’s. Thanks for helping us help create a beautiful tomorrow, one sushi roll at a time.