Detour & Kumquat Pleasure Pack
Probably you’ve seen something about it, or maybe you’ve already ordered yours! I want to talk about this, but first, a nonsensical story…
I had not gotten Swiss cheese in awhile. It was a cheese I disliked, and then ate a lot of in France when I lived there. The nonsensical story is this: my then-boyfriend and I would buy and eat a lot of cheese. It was usually Comté (we met in Franche-Comté), but it was also often Swiss (Emmental) or whatever was on sale at Lidl (I have a particular memory of him coming back with a big coffee-can-sized tin of marinated Greek cheese he was really excited about that I think reminded him of a cheese back home in Algeria, and I still think of that big tin fondly).
And that’s the whole story. Buying and eating cheese, eating great chunks rolled up in bread as a sandwich (scorching Dijon mustard, mayo, and lettuce + cheese sandwiches on real bread are actually what I live for…), eating as a pick-me-up, eating watching the nightly Grand Journal on my tiny netbook. New things, old things, but there was always the big rubbery chunk of Swiss to fall back on.
And so yes, I hadn’t gotten it in awhile. Back here for years and I’ve slipped into mainly getting aged cheddar. But lately, just lately, I’ve been grabbing the Swiss again, and eating it just the same - ripped off in chunks in times of need, just when you need to fill your “petit creux.” Thinking directly back to these times.
Look I’ve been thinking of things, and a million other things. But always it’s the same - the joy and necessity of food. I’ve also been thinking of the difference between food made with care and personality and food made in industrial warehouses. I’ve been thinking about how I know the difference, because I’ve had the privilege to know the difference, I have had to whole range from Doritos as a food group and canned green beans as a child to a twenty-year aged vin jaune & hand-cracked walnuts offered on a lucky day by my host lady’s friend in Franche-Comté, to the mouth-watering fire-hot pickled chili pikliz in Haiti and one of their 200 varieties of fresh mangos for breakfast. I was able to share North African and Indian delicacies with my ex and friends in France and Iranian delights with my friend here in Lincoln. And yet what I know is something that I know so truly from my mom stubbornly and tirelessly making golumbki for every holiday (and some birthdays) - that food is a story you create for others, with others. My friends throughout the years have shared their stories with me, there is no joy I know better than one of them thinking back to a dish they remembered from home and recreating it, and sharing it. It is why my mom makes the golumpki. It’s about keeping these treasures of taste and love alive.
And so, without further ado, I must say that this is why I am creating these boxes. I’ve realized how urgent it is for me to learn about and praise the fruits we have on this earth. I know how beautiful their pleasure can be, and I know how important it is to share. They are here in their harvests just as we are, each year another story, another way to measure up, to keep creating. I’ve been thinking of my sadness at the potential loss of their diversity and particularity from climate change and other factors. But mainly, it is my sadness at the loss of our ability to share their pleasure together. I’ve also been thinking of how it’s unfair that not everyone will have access to this primal beauty. I’ve been thinking about the overworked and underpaid people who bring them to us, the difference between “happy cows” and exploited ones, and how much needs to change in order to make the system more sustainable, healthy, fair. Because I want everyone to be able to taste a real, fresh fruit, as if for the first time, as if for a miracle. I remember and admire every day the farmers in Haiti who knew that their organic way of life was the best way, who refused to give it up, the real food they maintained while having relatively little, and yet through their food and celebration of it having more than many of us will ever know. Real food, the kind you dream about, the kind made right next door by artisans who know their craft by heart, is a human right, and really, I think, what we owe to the earth. And it will take change. But I know in my deepest heart that it is the change that will bring true happiness.
So here I will copy and paste the Kumquat Pleasure Pack details - we still have several left available for order (and I really can’t wait until you try the kumquat caramel).
Pleased to announce - pre-order for our Kumquat Pleasure Pack! We will have these available for shipping or pick up at Cultiva Labs on March 11th. We have one version with a milk chocolate selection (with the milk chocolate kumquat caramels) and a vegan version without!
Very limited quantities for this first monthly confection box, all based on the organic kumquats sourced through Open Harvest ✌️