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A Real Food Challenge: October Unprocessed

| 9/30/2011 11:45:36 AM

Kids Making PizzaOctober is being promoted by many food bloggers and food activists as October Unprocessed, meaning participants pledge to avoid eating processed foods for the entire month. I decided, why not? We’ve written many articles on how creating your own foods saves money and is beneficial to your health, and this seems like a great opportunity to really test them out. 

The rules of what qualifies as a processed food are actually quite lenient. You can still buy and eat food in a package as long as all the ingredients pass the “kitchen test,” meaning you could reasonably have the ability to create the ingredients and the final product in your kitchen. A few exceptions can be established, which for me will include baking powder, baking soda, yeast, spices, and a handful of other basic cooking ingredients.

This test leaves many staple items available to participants, but if I know MOTHER EARTH NEWS readers like I think I do, this isn't really that much of a challenge for a group of DIY, self-sufficient-minded folks. I'm looking forward to using this month as a way to try new ways to implement homemade version of products I use without thinking much about it. Ever made your own condiments like ketchup, mayo or mustard? How long have you been considering being bread self-reliant, or contemplating homemade mozzarella? What a great opportunity to improve — and share with others — cheese-, pasta-, bread- and any other foodstuff-making skills. Especially with Halloween at the end of the month, coming up with homemade versions of common sugary, store-bought concoctions should prove exciting and, undoubtedly, tasty.

The full month kicks off tomorrow, so in the hopes that others out there (you!) will join in, here’s a few recipes from the MOTHER EARTH NEWS archives to help you get started on your month of tasty, homemade eats. 

Homemade Bread: Truly Easy and Delicious  

How to Make Butter and Buttermilk  

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