“Don’t look for others to change, start by changing yourself. Ask yourself, “What can I do, because change begins with me’” (Jules Dervaes)
These words stuck with me for a while after attending a viewing of Homegrown Revolution. I was so inspired by this 15-minute film about a family doing something that most of us have never dreamed of doing…they transformed every inch of their modest sized yard (including the entire front yard!) into an urban homestead. The Dervaes’ are self sufficient, living “off the grid”, growing tons (literally tons!) of organic food on their tiny one-tenth acre property. They cook in a solar oven, use biodiesel to run their machinery and utilize all hand-crank gadgets to process their food. They keep bees for honey and chickens for eggs. For pantry staples they don't grow themselves, they barter with others in their area.
Viewing this film really made me think...what more can I do?
While I remain in awe of the Dervaes accomplishments and commitment to living so simply, I celebrate every small triumph in my humble “Suburban Homestead”.
I tend to my very modest garden plot that I water with collected rainwater and fertilize with composted material from our kitchen scraps.
And with every blossom turned vegetable I think to myself “Hey, I grew that!”
So although I do not cook in a solar or earthen oven, and I do not keep bees or chickens (yet), I will continue to live vicariously through the Dervaes and the many others that are taking a stand and choosing to live more simply and lightly…and I will continue to ponder what I can do, because change begins with me.
Question: What steps have you taken to live lightly?
Roasted Eggplant, Bell Pepper and Sungold Tomato Pizza
- 1 small eggplant, peeled and cut into thin slices
- 2 small bell peppers, halved (any color pepper would work)
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- Yellow cornmeal, for dusting
- 1 store bought whole-wheat pizza dough (I like to use Trader Joe's)
- 3/4 cup prepared marinara sauce (Marina's, Seymore, MO)
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
- 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced (Elixer Farm, Brixey, MO)
- freshly shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- Peel and cut eggplant into 1/2-inch thick rounds. Sprinkle with salt and let sit for about 10 minutes to allow eggplant to "sweat". Dry off slices with paper towel.
- Roast eggplant and peppers at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes, turning once. Remove from oven, let cool slightly, then thinly slice into strips.
- Meanwhile, sprinkle cornmeal onto a pizza baking sheet. Roll out dough and transfer to prepared baking sheet; Bake crust about 8 minutes until crust begins to brown.
- Spread marinara sauce on crust, leaving a 1-inch border. Top with roasted eggplant and peppers, tomatoes, basil and garlic. Lay the Parmigiano-Reggiano shavings on top.
- Bake at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes until cheese is browned and bubbly.