Breakfast on the patio yesterday, unexpectedly al fresco, in temperatures that beat anything we have experienced all year, judging by the melting butter . . .
And what fine butter it was too! In frustration at waiting for our pet dairyman (and supplier of wondrous raw Jersey milk and cream) to get into butter making, we decided our nutritional triumvirate is incomplete without raw butter, so we made enquiries. Our first stop was the French deli in Ledbury, this being within an acceptable radius. The answer was, “Yes, we can get you raw butter, but not until the end of October.” Very encouraging, but by then we had moved into instant gratification mode. We wanted raw butter, and we wanted it now!
A trawl through the interweb reeled in a possibility in the form of a cheese wholesaler from Middlesex. This time, the answer was ‘yes, we can supply – how much would you like?’ O frabjous day! The only issue was the carriage charge, so we made it worth our while by ordering a box of the stuff (having checked out its provenance, of course), and it arrived in time for Sunday breakfast.
Despite the heat, it still feels very autumnal out there, with most things in the garden looking suitably sleepy and winding down for the winter, so there was no way we were going to miss what might be the last chance to dine outdoors. So the table on the patio was laid, the breakfast was cooked, the coffee was made and out we went, rounding off the whole experience with some slices of sourdough bread and our newly delivered raw butter. Breakfast ascended to a new level of pleasure . . .
I might add that the bread was from one of our local artisan bakers – yes indeed, one of them. Way back in 2002, there were none. Now we have four to choose from, not counting Wigmore’s Bakery in Monmouth, a newly revamped bakery as described by me in my second book, How To Eat. Wigmore’s is a great place, but as far as I know they don’t yet do sourdough (feel free to update me, all you Monmouth residents).
There are a couple of important considerations here. Firstly, it illustrates the principle of ‘if you don’t ask, you don’t get.’ Sally and I understand the superb nutritional value of raw milk, raw cream and raw butter (don’t believe all the disinformation about these essential foods – it is all designed to get you to buy the industry’s inferior alternatives), so we ask for them and, by asking, we discover who is supplying them. The second consideration is the principle of supply and demand. One of the basic principles of economics is the relationship between demand and supply, and states that if a demand exists supply is created to meet that demand. This simple rule is of course subject to other factors, such as price, but the principle stands, and is clearly demonstrated in the changes in the supply of real bread in Herefordshire, a supply which has increased in response to an increase in demand.
Thus, if we want to eat the kind of real foods that sustain our health and wellbeing, both physically and spiritually, as well as elevating eating to a higher level, then we must seek out these foods and create demand. Only then will we be able to influence the ‘market’ to supply us with what we really need rather than what the market needs to satisfy its lust for profit at the expense of quality and vitality.