100-mile Thanksgiving Dinner

There does not seem to be anything that is more in the thanksgiving spirit than having a locally sourced feast. For the second year in a row, McMaster’s Outdoor Club held the 100 Mile Thanksgiving Dinner at the Red Door Church. Hannah Webb and other members of the Outdoor Club put together a massive meal that consisted of: five locally raised turkeys, home made gravy and stuffing, potatoes, beets, carrots, green beans, cranberry sauce all finished with some delicious apple crumble. While Plan B Organic Farms helped source some delicious vegetables, the seasonings were surprisingly subdued. However, even with no pepper, citrus or vinegar, the dinner was delicious and creative.

Based so close to the university campus, most of the hungry participants were McMaster students and faculty, which led to some new friendships and interesting discussion about all areas around food. Before the dinner started a short guest presentation helped set the mood while everyone sat around with rumbling stomachs. Once the food came out, there was a horde surrounding the table trying to quickly grab as much food as possible. As the time progressed, people would continue to return for seconds, thirds and even fourths. There was so much food that everyone was waddling home, looking fully satisfied and a little sleepy.

The "100 mile" concept describes a lifestyle of eating and purchasing food that has only been raised, grown and processed within 100 miles. The term "100-Mile Diet" started with a couple, who were journalists in Vancouver. They decided to spend a year eating only food that was grown, harvested and processed within 100 miles of where they live. They were fed up with the idea that most food travels between 1500-2500 miles, and as such the book, The 100-Mile Diet: A Year of Local Eating was created. During the year they wrote about the experience, interactions with friends and their own state of mind. It has become a cult novel in Canada and among international foodies, with a big following and people hosting events like this 100 Mile Thanksgiving Dinner.

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