Image credit: The Perennial Plate
I am a committed lazivore, and a strong believer in the lost eco-art of cutting yourself some slack. So I've always been somewhat skeptical of hardcore green living experiments, like strict 100-mile diets or growing your own grains in your backyard. Besides running the risk of burn out and green fatigue, I've often found that many folks will go to extraordinary lengths to reach their chosen "objective", and often they'll inadvertently increase their environmental footprint as they do so. The latest episode of The Perennial Plate is a classic case in point, as David and Mirra travel great distances to forage for a giant clam, harvest sea beans and other greens, and even make their own sea salt. Yet despite all the exertion and inefficiency, there's something to this DIY approach after all.
Given the travel, and the energy involved in boiling down water to make salt, I have little doubt that the carbon footprint of the meal shown above is considerably higher than many store-bought feasts. Yet much like my friend who crushed his own canola seeds to get oil to deep fry a turkey, there is still much value in doing things for yourself.
I doubt anyone at Perennial Plate would advocate that we all go foraging for all of our daily meals, or spend hours boiling down water to make our own sea salt. What they would say is that foraging a little food from the wild, or learning what goes in to making the products we take for granted, can be a great way to recalibrate how we look at both the natural world, and the products that end up on our plate. (Which, in the end, are always one and the same thing.)
I argued before that DIY is about ownership and knowledge. This episode is a prime illustration of that fact.
More from the Perennial Plate
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