From one perspective, you could say I set out to be sustainable in Tasmania. I volunteered in fact. Prior to heading to Hobart, I contacted the organization Sustainable Living Tasmania (SLT) and said ‘I’m be moving down. How can I get involved?’
But on the other hand, I don’t think Carlos nor I specifically planned to make one of our ‘Year in Tassie’ goals: live more sustainably. We wanted to eat well and ride bikes. We have been doing lots of both and turns out that by living the dream we are in fact living very sustainably. What does that buzz word even mean? Well for one it means eating local foods. Here’s a snapshot of our home-cooked menu this past week:
Sunday: scones with local flour, butter and cream; local greens baked in a bechamel with local milk; poached local eggs.
Monday: beans, homemade tortillas and local green beans.
Tuesday: potluck out with mountain bike friends
Wednesday: falafel and salad with local greens (Carlos also had a sketchy schnitzel. It was only $1.50 at the food store but I’m not going to vouch for its sustainability.)
Thursday: homemade pizza with homemade ricotta and olives; onion soup.
Friday: local lamb sausage and homemade yogurt + mint dip; homemade flatbread with local flour.
Saturday: local veal and pork burgers with local veggies
Basically any seasonal veg we want, we get from a Tassie farm. That’s true of dairy (butter, cheese, yogurt), flour, meat and seafood. And we have been making our own yogurt, crackers, cheese, mustard, salsas…. It’s all so delicious!
This weekend the answer to my original email to SLT was realized. The annual festival needed a Cooking Coordinator and I happily agreed to do it. I coordinated the cooking demonstrations at the Food for Thought themed festival. Fourteen Aussie chefs, many of them well known down here, gave one hour demos both Saturday and Sunday and I helped make sure the program ran along smoothly. I sourced their ingredients from local purveyors prior to the event and served as the MC for the weekend.
It was heaps of fun to meet all the chefs and watch them in action. The best part for me was the common sensibility of both the chefs and the Hobart attendees. Everyone was so mellow! Of course there were some snafoos– not enough mint, the wrong kind of flour… but everyone just rolled with it. There is a common Aussie saying that resonates really well with Carlos and I: No dramas. Meaning, Relax. It’s not a big deal. While on a working-holiday, that is exactly the mentality I hold want to hold onto. Eat well. Ride hard. No dramas.