Monday, November 2, 2009

Chickens on Your Roof, In Your Back Yard? Just How Locavore Are You Willing to Go?

Funny that I should get this now, I have been struggling to make raisins out of organic Marquis grapes I bought at the Union Square green market, it's slow going in my oven at 150 with the convection fan on. So far it's been more than 24 hours and although moving towards raisin they are still not quite there. Then I ponder how much the two and a half pounds of grapes cost me and realize not only is this going to take 36 hours but and yield me maybe 2 cups of very expensive grapes they aren't going to be sweet and most and leathery like the ones you get in a package from California, because, well our seedless grapes aren't as sweet. It was worth the try. I think raisin brioche is in our future.

All of this to say experiments like these make me wonder just how local is a locavore? What, if any exceptions do you make? Sure if I had a grape arbour it would give me cheap grapes and a dehydrator would make the drying process easier, but that's a lot of ifs and a lot of work just to get raisins.

This contraption pictured above is a Eglu Cube for those intrepid people who decide to have there own chickens. Another crazy thing I'd like to do, but am not ready yet to give up my guest room to livestock. Besides I think it would be mean to the chickens, they need grass, grubs and worms and some room to pluck about in.

Funny in the old days (read the '80's) our friend Ansell lived on Forsythe Street on the Lower East Side, back when it look like a set from one of those apocalypse movies and every tenement had there own heroin dealer. We'd be walking down the street and suddenly momma hen with her 7 chicks would come walking out the ruins and down the street with great purpose. I love it.

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