Where it comes from
Five or six years ago my wife decided to do our best to know what we were putting in our bodies. While we don't always hit a homerun with this, it was important that we not only cooked at home more, but that we understood where it came from. This meant sourcing from farms and butcher shops so that we bought as little (or no) meat from a chain grocery store and instead purchased from local sources that we could look at and see how the animals are handled.
It was amazing how quickly you could tell the difference between the meat that came from a farm or a local butcher or the easier option of a chain store. We have even started to do that with vegetables as much as we can. This gets much tougher as it is still vital to get fruits and veggies into the diet of little ones so that we turn a blind eye to the fact that avocado is not a winter vegetable and instead opt for our kids to eat seemingly healthy food they dig.
This morning I am going to take it a step further, I am going on my first hunt. I had a friend turn 40 this week and he has always wanted to do a bird hunt, so we are hunting pheasant this morning, which is something I have never done but am excited to do. It might not be your thing but I want to understand how food ends up on a plate and to go through the process of hunting to cooking from start to finish. It is an important moment in my love and respect for food.
I have always loved the idea of nose to tail eating, meaning you eat the entire animal so that the life you take is used to the fullest potential. Need an example? My favorite tacos in town are of the "lengua" variety and if your Spanish is rusty that is beef tongue. Maybe that isn't for you, I get it but the process of food getting to your plate needs a bit of context. Or maybe just I do.
I have talked about going hunting for a number of years but it just hasn't worked out, today as become the day. What will happen? I have no idea but by the end of it I will understand where that bird came from before it ends up on a plate somewhere.