Thursday, May 21, 2015
An Edible History of Humanity
There were so many fascinating tidbits in here. Food cultivation has played such a big part in shaping civilization...everything to where we can live to how we wage wars. We were especially intrigued by how hunter-gatherers enforced food sharing, and used humiliation techniques to keep equality and the group first. And how some groups were so wary of obligation, that giving lavish gifts was frowned upon, but in other cultures this was expected and built upon.
Also of particular interest, was the history of the potato in France, and how royalty tried to encourage its popularity by wearing its flowers, serving it at feasts, and "guarding" the fields to make it look more desirable.
Another section that was really interesting is when the author challenged the concept of localvore diets superiority. Food miles are not always a good indicator of carbon load. We were really suprised to learn that lamb grown in New Zealand has lower carbon load even if shipped across the world, due to grass fed, unlike local lambs that are fed processed feed. Potato carbon footprint varies more depending if you cover the pan more than how far it travels!
One phrase that really resonates to day is "competition for resources tends to encourage over-exploitation." We really seem to be taking this to extremes, and it is only slightly reassuring that the author thinks world population will cap out in the next 100 year.
One last thing we talked about was the Buy Nothing Project, which is made up of Facebook groups all over the place, that people can join and share things they don't need...everything from furniture to leftover cookies! You can find a group near you here!
As always, we had a wonderful meal:
lemon rhubarb cake
Barbara – rice pudding
Laura - banana nut bread
Dawn – Asian style green salad
Katie W. – Headed to Boston for graduation!
Extra copies are available at the Mountlake Terrace Library.
See you soon,