Love happy hours? Really into beer making? Think your homemade sausages are the bomb? Eat out every night?
Maybe it’s time to give NOLA Locavore’s “Eat Local Challenge” a second glance. On June 1, the 30-day challenge to eat all — or at least more locally grown foods – begins. Local food and drink are defined as that which is made from ingredients picked, raised or caught within a 200-mile radius of New Orleans.
The annual challenge aims to turn more of us into “locavores” — folks who subsist on local food and drink. The effort has serious goals. Organizers want to ensure all citizens have access to fresh fruits and vegetables, reduce our carbon footprint and food waste as well as to encourage foods grown in natural, sustainable ways.
The NOLA Locavore’s 30-day Eat Local Challenge can serve as a nutritional reboot to focus more on eating clean, local, and wholesome foods.
Still, even if you’re far from fanatical about where your bell pepper was plucked, this month-long challenge and its series of events offer social and culinary delights.
And, who knows, you might learn something along the way.
The challenge itself aims to wrap its arms around everyone from the sandal-wearing locavore to the guy who guesses he could at least think about locally sourced food and drink.
Here is how the categories are defined:
- Ultra Strict, or Tchoupitoulas: This is 100 percent locally sourced food and drink, with no exceptions. Think no coffee and only locally made spirits distilled from Louisiana sugarcane or rice.
- Strict, or Bienville: This allows three nonlocal foods daily and the option for three weekly meals that aren’t locally sourced. Can’t live without that morning coffee? Try this one.
- Lenient: Six meals per week that are not locally sourced. Sounds lenient but think about three meals a day, seven days a week, that’s still 15 meals that are.
- Ultra Lenient, or the Ignatius J. Reilly level: Commit to two days of eating locally sourced food per week.
NOLA Locavore provides shopping guides to locally sourced foods and recipes to those who register.