Matt and Lentil Purbrick started their journey selling produce from their farm in Tahbilk, Victoria to chefs, and then locals, launching their Grown & Gathered blog along the way. Their first book is full of nourishing recipes and advice for growing your
Living the slow life with Melbourne bloggers Grown & Gathered.
What is a ‘natural’ diet? It is about produce that has been grown, gathered and nurtured with the seasons. It is about nutrient-rich foods that are great for your body and for nature, bringing the two into balance. A natural diet is one that works with what nature gives you. It means that you grow and eat a diverse mix of plants, because for the soil to be balanced you must grow a range of crops, including vegetables, trees, flowers, pulses and grains. It will be mainly plants, because plants produce more food per acre than animals, but for the soil to be balanced also requires a mix of animals, because their manures, the farm tasks they help with, and the specific behaviours they express – grazing, rooting, scratching – all enliven soil activity and stimulate natural growth. A natural eater, utilising what is around them, will assimilate these animal foods into their diet too. Finally, when we place ourselves in nature, we observe seasonal abundances, which, like the rest of nature, we respond to. So we hunt game and gather wild greens, fruits and fungi until balance is restored. This becomes our diet, a diet that is seasonal and full of wholefood ingredients, mainly plants. It is incidentally balanced, full of variety, sustainable and local.
Our regional diet consists of food made for sharing and celebrating every day: year-round staples combined with fresh ingredients from around us; preserves from seasons past; something a little bit special we have sought or traded with a great person; a jar of something fermenting on the bench; or a homemade stock ready to go. It’s the diet of our ancestors and this is what food is all about.”
This is an edited extract from Grown
& Gathered by Matt and Lentil Pubrick (Plum, RRP $45). Available in stores nationally from September 27, 2016. @grownandgathered @grownngathered
Download our enhanced App for Cook Mode