A friend alerted me to the publication of this new book, apparently written just for people like me.
Make the Bread, Buy the Butter breaks down the world of food into two categories: stuff that it’s worthwhile to make/grow/cure/slaughter yourself at home, and stuff you’re better off picking up at the Food Lion. (Or wherever.)
For the D.I.Y.-inclined, this is kind of like sanity in book form. I’m all too familiar with the mania that can overtake someone blessed with a backyard, an inability to relax and a perverse desire to tally the number of home-raised versus store-bought ingredients in any given dinner.
For me, the mania mostly has to do with canning. I can too much, and I know that because I don’t actually eat everything I can. Even after giving away as much as possible, I still have jars in the basement that’ll never see the light of day. One of my resolutions for 2012 is to can less. (Except tomatoes. No such thing as "too many.")
For others, the mania could manifest in animal husbandry (picture somebody with a full-time job raising bees, chickens, ducks, goats, a small cow, tilapia, etc.) or in artisan-type food projects (making cheese, curing meats, brewing beer). Whatever the flavor, it might get you some serious foodie cred, but the mania can also wreck your leisure time in a hurry.
So I’m glad somebody’s talking some sense about this. Anybody read the book? Anybody cutting back (or ramping up) your food-producing hobbies?