“When you have the best and tastiest ingredients, you can cook very simply and the food will be extraordinary because it tastes like what it is. . . . Food tastes naturally delicious when it has been grown with care, harvested at the right moment, and brought to us immediately, direct from the producer.” — Alice Waters, The Art of Simple Food (2007)
Alice Waters argues that good eating has less to do with cooking techniques, elaborate recipes and expensive kitchen equipment than with the best ingredients. What better ingredients than those cultivated and produced especially for you in your own backyard by The Kitchen Gardener?
It is deeply satisfying to eat good food, food that tastes, looks and smells delicious. Food grown hyperlocal tastes best because it’s picked at its perfect ripeness, when its maturity makes it the most tasty and healthy. Also food begins to decay and lose its freshness, nutrients and flavors as soon as it’s picked. The conventional produce we purchase in the supermarket has lost its wonderful flavors, nutrients and freshness. Usually it’s been picked immature so it ripens in a box — if at all — and not on the stalk, and it may travel thousands of miles before it reaches the store; these practices damage and destroy the value inherent in fresh food. Soon after I began gardening, I noticed that growing and harvesting my own produce was transforming my cooking and introducing new pleasures in preparing and eating food — exactly what Alice Waters purports. So picking hyperlocal out of your yard gives you hyperfresh ingredients for the finest pleasures of cooking and eating.
There are lots of ways you can enjoy the freshest and tastiest vegetables and herbs from your own backyard. If you live in Chicago, The Kitchen Gardener will plant and grow heirloom, organic and specialty vegetables and herbs so you can eat simply delicious food direct from your own kitchen garden. Obviously you can do it yourself with garden catalogs and planning tool kits. Whatever route you take, you’ll find pleasure in eating what you grow in your own backyard.