Save the planet & eat your cake too

In today's modern industrialised society, it's a long long way from paddock to plate. The journey is always bad for the environment, and more often than not, bad news for the consumer too. The humble tomato serves as a good example of how food miles can leave a bad taste in our collective mouths. The average supermarket tomato is grown thousands of kilometres from where it ends up on the shelf. The dilemma? It can't be picked at it's peak (long after it's turned red and there's plenty of sugar in the fruit, sweet and delicious) AND land on the supermarket shelf looking perfectly round and rosey red.

Testament to that, most tomatoes sold in supermarkets today are gassed. They can be picked well before they have ripened, when they are still green and crunchy, gassed with ethylene until red and transported to our local supermarket. What we get as a consumer are perfectly round, rosey red tomatoes that are crunchy and tasteless. That's the price we pay for having tomatoes at our fingertips twelve months of the year.

While the 'slow food' revolution is growing, and an increasing number of savvy, progressive 30-somethings are thinking more about where the food on their plate comes from, we've still got a long way to go.

My philosophy on food is simple. Eat real food that is unprocessed, as close to its original form as possible, sourced from local farmers and producers that care about the land they live on and the animals that feed off it; unprocessed, local, ethical.

One of the easiest ways to do this is to shop at local farmers' markets. Farmers' markets allow you to buy fresh, seasonal produce grown locally and often using organic or biodynamic farming methods. Basically, it's where you can buy tomoatoes that taste like tomatoes.

Wherever you are in Australia, find a farmers' market near you by visiting the Australian Farmers' Markets Association.

Watch this space for delicious seasonal recipes. Coming soon!

Fresh seasonal, organic vegies direct from farmer to you.

Small-scale farmers who sell their meat at farmers' markets have an ethical approach to farming, and ensure their livestock are well looked after. Afterall, a happy cow means tastier meat.

A selection of delectable home-made jams just part of the wide range of produce available at farmers' markets.

It's hard to go back to pushing a trolley up a narrow congested supermarket isle after shopping amongst the trees.

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