I started the Homegrown Year and, obviously, started posting photos of the meals I was eating. They’re pretty and delicious, but I’m eating almost the same combination of ingredients at every meal. Why?
On day two I posted an egg, cheese, and tomato bowl for breakfast, and *you guessed it * an egg, cheese, zucchini, and tomato bowl for dinner. As soon as I posted photos of both, one of my best friends, Bethany, immediately noted: “Didn’t you just have that for breakfast?” Yes. I did.
But WHY? Why would my meals mostly look the same right now? Haven’t I been planning and bartering for things I can’t get (like lemons) so that I can get a little variety? Yep. However, I need to eat fresh for as long as I can, because every time I use a preserved food, that’s one more fresh thing I need to preserve. There’s not enough bandwidth to deplete my supplies during the times I need to be building them.
I’ve spent the last several months contemplating the sheer volume of food I will eat in a year. It’s staggering. Many days I will google things like “How many chickens does a person eat in a year?” Or text my friends and ask “How much celery do you actually EAT every month?”
I break it down by days, weeks, calories, and the calendar. Nights are spent thinking about what I’m going to do in January, February, March, and April. I keep repeating the parable of the grasshopper and ant. My current mantra is, “be an ant.”
Minimizing the work it will take to feed myself for a full year means that I’m eating quick and fresh now. Everything I grab from the garden and munch on is one less jar I need to pull from the shelf.
That said, if you have any combination of egg, cheese, zucchini, cucumbers, and tomatoes that’s quick and easy, let me know. I’ll be panic-preserving in the meantime.