Mar 11, 2011

8 Keeping the tradition & Incorporating the new.

Waste, so much waste, unintentional or not 9 out of 10 times the green onions, onions, celery, thyme, rosemary, oregano get soggy and slimy and you have to throw it out because either you got too busy and didn’t cook enough times to use them all up or you bought too much because it was on sale and you told yourself you will use it all. This was never an issue for me growing up, throwing out greens was unheard of until I decided to abandon some of my traditional ways I learnt as a child, like how to preserve food and by extension save money all because all of a sudden I am “too busy”. That in a nut shell is the crux of the problem, too much adaptation and assimilation for my own good that it had me throwing out good old common sense and cost effect strategies learnt growing up in the Island of Trinidad of living and eating well. All that assimilating resulted in the cultivating disposable habits. Disposability i.e. waste, waste and more waste. Though I didn’t completely undo everything because frankly I think it’s too deeply embedded into my psyche. I finally said enough of the unproductive ways that amounted to unnecessary waste that amount to throwing money down the drain. Luckily for me, "old habits die hard" and I have regained my sense of equilibrium and reinstated my authentic knowledge’s reapplying them liberally into every aspect of my life, from baking my own breads, jams, cakes to green seasoning.

Today I made Green Seasoning. Yep, green seasoning in Trinidad that is what it is called. No fancy smancy word to difficult to pronounce or spell, just what it is, green seasoning. It is a combination of different green seasonings (I don't know if its designated as vegetable, but that's another debate best save for another day) such as regular thyme, Spanish thyme, rosemary, celery, green onions as well as onions and garlic for flavor blended with vinegar, water and a wee bit of salt. It is then bottled and stored in the refrigerator and used when needed to season your meats, poultry, fish, rice, potatoes or any other food you choose. The process of making it was quick and easy, less than 30 minutes from wash to cut to grind. Not bad for something that will last me at least six to eight weeks or more depending on how much cooking I do. I laugh at myself because I at times allow myself to be lulled into thinking doing it would take too much time, ah you know excuses, excuses, excuses. If i had a dollar for every time I use an excuse I'd rival Donald Trump. hmmmmm....and have more money than dirt.

I was flicking through the television channels (channel surfing) when I caught a show on Food & Budget. The title gave me pause. I don't recall if that was the title of the show or if it was the topic, though I had a good laugh at the “experts” advising people on how to eat well on a budget or how to get their fruits and vegetables to last longer and I think to myself, ‘they are underestimating people and over estimating their selves.’ Perhaps am wrong, after all they had to go to university to learn that right? Riiiiiiightttttttt.…..

Hmmmmmmmmm…..You see how easy it is to take for granted something you have known all your life? Don’t do it I tell yah, don’t dismiss the skills and knowledges you grew up with convincing yourself that something else is better. Hey don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with learning something new; heck, that's what life is all about learning and growing, just don’t dismiss what you already know to be tried and true. Simply put, keep the tradition and incorporate the new. Marry the right combinations and you can’t lose. You feel me? The truth is, it isn’t always about “better” sometimes it’s just about BALANCE.

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