Hi! I’m Beth McKeon, intrepid cook and writer behind The Food Advocate. I’m so glad you’ve stopped by!
You’ve probably stumbled upon a few good food blogs in your traipsing around the interwebs. This is not your average food blog. For one thing, I only rarely post recipes. Many people, websites, cookbooks, and TV shows do a fantastic job of showcasing great recipes – I’ll let them take care of that piece. Instead, The Food Advocate serves as a venue to discuss issues of food politics, local food events, and the practical steps to simplifying cooking. It’s also a scrapbook of my ridiculous high-jinx (hello, making butter!), surprises (it’s so easy!), and small victories with the grand Escape from the Western Diet.
The genesis of this site began when I received a beautiful red enameled cast iron dutch oven for Christmas and then read In Defense of Food, by Michael Pollan. Bolstered by a nearby Trader Joe’s, I first tried cutting out high fructose corn syrup and crazy weird additives in my foods. However, my diet was still highly processed. In starting The Food Advocate, I began an intentional journey to learn to cook from scratch in a way that met my other food-related needs: variety, ease, and adventure.
At the same time, I committed to a couple of food-buying parameters as well: buy mostly local animal products (or at least hormone-free or humanely-raised) and buy organic-like fruits and vegetables if they fall on the Dirty Dozen list. Over a year later, I consistently buy local eggs, beef, buffalo, and pork products. I buy hormone-free chicken and dairy products. I pick my own veggies at local farms, shop at the Saturday farmer’s market, and support my local food co-op as much as possible.
These are my choices.
While you’ll probably read about my food choices from time to time on this blog, what you won’t find here are any judgments about your choices or buying habits. There are plenty of reasons for why we eat what we eat. I know from firsthand experience the challenges of junk food addiction, lack of quality food choices, and feeling overwhelmed by my lack of technology, technique, and equipment. Even now, I don’t eat a perfect diet of “from scratch” food and definitely go through junk food periods. It is definitely a process.
You also won’t find any mention of calorie-counting, apologies for the use of butter, or ways to make cooking more diet-friendly. Food is too vital to me – for connection with others, for sensuality, for celebration, and for life itself – to be policed by cultural expectations of what and how much I should eat.
So just as I gently navigate my way through the process of developing cooking and eating habits that will sustain me and match my values, I hope that this site feels like a safe place to learn with curiosity about the delights and fun of cooking – without the pressure.
Want to know more about me?
Sure! I’m a maven and completely understand that curiosity to know more.
I’m an educator in Lawrence, Kansas interested in reading and language development, improving educational services in under-privileged communities, and brain plasticity. I’m a former nomad and prodigious explorer. I knit and speak French fluently. I support my local public library.
Last year, I served on the Board of Directors of my food co-op The Community Mercantile. I feel so fortunate to live in a community that actively seeks ways to improve our local food system and love being a part of the conversation.
And also, I want to thank Alupa Creative for my gorgeous blog header design.