The Rambling Epicure’s 2010 Manifesto: Mindful Eating and more
The Rambling Epicure on Facebook and Twitter
I’ve started two Facebook groups: The Rambling Epicure, for our worldwide followers, and Swiss Foodies, for those who are more focused on what goes on in the Swiss food world. These groups include the GenevaLunch posts, as well as reading suggestions for food- and restaurant-related articles from news sites and blogs, with a short introduction by The Rambling Epicure.
The addition of the Facebook and Twitter feeds lets you follow “breaking news” in the food world. I will from time to time gather the highlights of these one-line inroductions into a Foodie News letter, like the one last week, so you can get an overview of what’s going on the food and restaurant world in Switzerland and abroad.
I am American and I do read Michael Pollan, but I’ve been on this ecological, healthy eating, organic food kick since I was a child. I was raised on homegrown food and Wendell Berry, so all the things we’re reading these days just seem like common sense to me. I’m just a hillbilly in a red silk dress, after all.
This being said, I want to encourage the movement toward buying local products, cooking homemade food and general awareness of what and how we eat. The rising rate of obesity in children in the Western world makes me think it’s time we all take a look at exactly what we eat and how we teach our children to eat.
A lot of this information comes from studies and literature in the U.S., so it may seem overly American at times, but just be aware that this is because Switzerland is a small country with numerous languages so we just don’t have the means of having the wealth of literature they have in the U.S.
Buying local, buying Swiss
Since I live in Switzerland, local means Swiss, so you might feel I’m pushing Swiss products down your throat. I’m not.
Buying local is not only healthier; it also creates a local economy. I encourage everyone, wherever they live, to do the same. We’ll not only eat healthier, but we’ll also support our local businesses and provide jobs.
It is also more ecological to buy products that were produced just down the road from your house: less pollution, less fuel consumption.
It means being mindful of what you buy and what you put in the your body. It means being mindful of the effect it has on the environment and on your health.
2009 was my first year of doing this blog, and I had a lot of ground to cover. This year I will devote more time to searching for restaurants for all budgets, restaurants that are in line with my Mindful Eating Manifesto (to be published soon here on GenevaLunch), and just interesting places to eat.
Every meal doesn’t have to be a gourmet meal. If your products are good quality, you don’t even have to do a lot to whip up a tasty meal. So restaurants that use good ingredients will have a place right alongside gourmet restaurants.
Great info on everything to do with cooking: Cooking Up A Story
Tips on cooking up fresh pumpkin and how to choose just the right pumpkin. As Americans and Canadians probably already know from experience, the water content of European pumpkins is often quite different from that of the North American varieties, which becomes a real problem when you’re using North American recipes for Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Fortunately, farmers markets in the Lake Geneva region offer a wide variety of pumpkins, so you should be able to find the right variety so you can still make your family recipes. But I do forewarn you: pumpkin pie can be tricky, so it’s best to do a trial run before the Big Day.
And don’t forget to save the seeds. Larita’s pumpkin seed recipe is a bit too American, in that we tend to use more natural ingredients in Switzerland, but one could perhaps use Migros or Coop “Country Potatoes” seasoning and simply skip her American smoke flavouring. In this case, it would be best to leave out the other spices, since this seasoning is in fact a mixture of some of the same spices.
To launch the chasse or hunting season: Wild River Review – Wild Table
Warren Bobrow’s new blog is full of old-fashioned and traditional recipes with a modern edge, as well as tips on how to live the gentleman’s life in general. Try his pumpkin-filled pasta recipe.
For manifestos on the importance of buying local food, as well as traditional recipes and food ideas: The Slow Cook
Ed Bruske is really just a foodie who engages in the concerns of a hungry planet, so you will find a variety of food-related topics, as well as recipes. I particularly like his “I’m an Elitest” post, in which he addresses the “ravings of James McWilliams, the writer who argues that there’s something sinister about the local food movement,” because it gives you both sides of the story: Michael Pollan and Wendell Berry vs. James McWilliams.
For a homely English slant: Yummy Homely Food
Laure Moyle took a 3-month holiday, but has finally returned just in time for chocolate week. She creates original, yet somewhat traditional recipes, using traditional British ingredients. Since she grew up in France, they often have a touch of the French, and use the local ingredients she finds near her home in Sussex. Sometimes it’s nice to have simple, unpretentious, yet good quality, comfort food.
She puts a particular emphasis on getting Kids in the Kitchen.