Over the past years I’ve been influenced how we as individuals and cultures interact with food by writers such as Michael Pollan and Mark Schatzker. I also have had an obsession with watching cooking shows beginning with Yan Can Cook when I was in elementary school. I could and probably should also write an entire other post on diets and the body positive movement (since I like to procrastinate you should at least read Lindy West’s memoir and Kelsey Miller’s Anti-Diet Project).
These influences have led me to my current project to buy the Most Basic Ingredients(MBI) possible. Often I document for myself these types of goals, but why not share this experiment with the world? Why do I call it MBI? Well I work in tech and there is an obsession with building Minimum Viable Products(MVP) in some circles. A MVP is the most basic thing you can build as a product and put out into the market place, my MBI is intended as a counterpoint to that. The most basic piece you can purchase to make food. In a world of heavily processed food as an individual I’m simply trying to get back to the basics. What is at the root of what I am eating? Not the fastest way, not even the easiest way, the most basic way.
It bears mentioning that I come from a place of a lot of privilege. I have a good job, I work remotely and I don’t have any dependents. I can afford to do some experimentation, I have the time to do it and by working from home I can do multi-step processes that require you to check-in over the course of the day.
So to start here is what I bought tonight at the local grocery.
- Dozen eggs
- 3 tomatoes
- 2 avocados
- 1 bottle of kombucha
- Cane sugar
- Half & Half
- Gallon glass jar
- Box of black tea (not pictured, since I forgot and had to run back)
Cost: $41.23 (the jar was $15.00 so that was a big of a splurge)
I think I’ve done pretty well on the raw ingredients. In this case I consider the sugar raw (despite some refining) and classify the half & half about the same. My least raw item under my unscientific classification is the kombucha. Though the goal with some of these ingredients is to start making my own. I hope to continue sharing what I do with these sorts of purchases as I document my path to MBI. At the very least I hope to be drinking some MBI kombucha in the next month or so.