Localvore for a Month

Following my last post where I set the guidelines for the month… (Eat food that we have grown here on the farm, Swap and barter with neighbours, Ride my bike and my horse only for transport, Cook only using wood (grown on the farm),Use only hot water from the wood stove or compost shower)

kale chips ready to go in the oven

kale chips ready to go in the oven

canna roots

canna roots or arrowroot

Well here I am into my 3rd day of “Live off the Land July”, I have to say that the first couple of days weren’t much to talk about as I was grumpy and exhausted, lost(then found) my old dog, had a sick cow and would have killed for a coffee. I ate tangelos from the tree, pumpkin soup, a couple of eggs, a delicious garden salad and a strange green garden soup which just tasted a bit too green.

It’s amazing how “local” we think we eat until we make an absolute point of it. I keep opening up the cupboard and seeing things that just don’t pass; the delicious “locally made muesli” full of ingredients that I know aren’t grown anywhere near here, the beautiful “locally baked organic bread”  with flour from a few hundred kilometers away, the spices I love to put in my food, the tamari I love to put on everything, nothing passes the test!

Enough for complaining! thank goodness for our freshly pressed olive oil and thank you Kylie for bringing locally collected salt to our last swap day, it is precious and important stuff and I’m already thinking about a bike or horse ride to the beach on a salt collecting mission. But what to pack for lunch ……

My carbohydrate intake has definitely diminished hugely and nothing quite satisfies a hungry tum like a good carb meal, with no easy carbs available (bread, pasta, rice, porridge) I am constantly looking at foods and assessing how much of a carbohydrate hit I’m likely  to get from them. pumpkin is good, canna is surprisingly good and I wish we had planted our spuds earlier, I’m interested in what the local indigenous people ate for carbs at this time of the year , something to research.

So what is our favorite dish so far? I think it’s the amazing kale chips. With an abundance of brassicas in the garden, a wood stove going constantly and plenty of olive oil and salt, kale chips are the perfect snack. I have a beef and (dried) broad bean stew on the go with some tomato sauce frozen from summer to be eaten with …you guessed it …..roasted canna roots!

This journey has two important aspects to me, firstly it is to slow down my life enough so that I am truly doing what I believe in and living with the rhythm of the land, this is for my self and for my health. The other is the bigger picture, the question of what we are growing in our local community that would truly sustain us if we needed to rely on it. More thoughts to come…



  1. Jasmine Sgroi 11 years ago

    Fascinating Jodie, thanks for sharing such valuable info, and suffering various food group withdrawals in the process… A couple of queries if you don’t mind. I collected some salt off a rock in Augusta last summer but after using it a couple of times chucked it out, being unsure of its safety. I’d love to know if it is actually safe to consume straight of the rocks, or if there is an easy harvesting method. Also, are common canna root and arrowroot really one and the same? Best of luck with your journey, looking forward to the next instalment.
    Warm regards, Jasmine

    • Jodie 11 years ago

      HI Jasmine……….great to know there’s people interested in the idea. Yes Sea Salt is fabulous……no problems there and as for canna, I did some reading about them and it does seem as though they are all edible, I would say that “canna edulis” has been grown for its roots rather than its flowers. There is a great website I found called Plants for the Future, they have a number of canna species there if you want to check yours. Also there are other plants commonly called arrowroot that are used for the same purpose. I’ll be experimenting making flour soon.

      cheers Jodie

      • Jasmine Sgroi 11 years ago

        Wow what a gem of a website! Thanks for that. We just bought an old house in town, and the backyard was decimated (levelled) by an excavator today. I thought I’d saved everything of value, not knowing about cannas. I’ll pop ’round there in the morning to see if I can salvage any. I remember Mum making ‘glue’ with arrowroot for us kids to eat if we had an upset tummy. Best of luck with the flour, look forward to hearing the results.

        Thanks again, Jasmine

  2. Heather 11 years ago

    I have to agree those chips were delicious.

  3. Margot Edwards 11 years ago

    Big challenge Jode…I’ll try pop round with something yum and locally grown to share. I’m thinking the Wardandi ate Borana …bush potatoes aka bush yams for carbohydrate, amongst other things. Hence the name Boranup, place of water where the Borana grow xoxo

  4. Donna 11 years ago

    have you read much about paleo eating? or sarah wilson or david gillespie? interesting ideas about carbs and their affect on our health…

    • Jodie 11 years ago

      Thanks Donna, just been having a look……interesting stuff and I think more than a grain of truth in it

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