Home-, hand- and manmade

The past year I’ve come across so many emergent, and promising food movements, that I decided to publish a series.  This first post explains you how doing-it-yourself  (DIY) is slowly pushing away our call for convenience in the kitchen, cellar, garage, or wherever you brew your beer, stir your ricotta or store your chutneys.

The DIY movement started in Brooklyn, among people in their 20s and 30s who “have a sense of community and an appreciation for traditional methods and flavors”. We all want to know what’s in our food, but most of all it’s exciting to make food the artisan way. And get it right. Exactly right.  

By adopting traditional preservation and conservation methods,  food processors and supermarkets  are side-stepped.  Many amateur, and professional chefs prefer to do the bread-baking, the meat-curing and the cucumber-pickling themselves. Preferably at home. By hand.

The book shown here is a perfect starting point for any DIY foodie. It’s made by cook and culinary illustrator Yvette van Boven. I call her book a cross-over between a cookbook, and Instructables.

Once you’ve finished your batch of chili-jam or get fed up with your home-brewn punch, start a bottom-up initiative, where community is built through the sharing and swapping of homemade food. An overseas example is the (again Brooklyn-based) food swap where homemade goods are exchanged for other edibles as a means to combat the lingering economy. Your shelf will be happy.

A Dutch example of swapping amazingly tasty rhubarb wodka, seaweed lasagne and eggnog icecream is the Underground Farmer’s Market (Underground Boerenmarkt), where Amsterdam-based food trendwatcher Marjan Ippel brings together all types of avid home-cooks to share their produce with other cooks, and a limited (paying) public.

If you’d sell your homemades there, what would you like to make perfectly?

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