Monday, December 24, 2012

Farm to Table in Belize

Yes. In Belize people are concerned about eating locally.  Part of that may be the price of food and how much imported food costs. 

While bicycling a couple of days ago, we came upon a lovely garden. A huge, lovely garden.  Too curious, we hopped off our bikes and trespassed, asking a gardener when we saw him if we could look.

Turns out this is a chef’s garden, nestled up right next to the Turtle Inn.  Haven’t heard of it? You’ve undoubtedly heard of the owner. Francis Ford Coppola.

The garden that supplies this resort and restauarant includes herbs, greens, vegetables, and yes, even the chaya plant that we had been wanting to see in real life.

And, from talking to local chefs, part of being a locavore is just pragmatic. 

The chef next door to us, who is opening a new restaurant in Belize called the Sea Glass, is planning an opening on New Year’s Day.  One of his menu items in pepper garlic seared tuna canapés.

“I’m not sure I’m going to be able to get any from local fishermen. I may have to go out fishing myself.”

Another chef, Sol from Hidden Falls Café, has a farm about an hour and a half away from Placencia.  He grows food for his restaurant and supplies others around.

“Do you grow chaya?” we asked him.

Yep. In fact, he supplies Martha’s Restaurant in San Ignacio, where we first were introduced to chaya.

And today, he went out with a spear gun and nabbed a few red snapper. Guess we know what’s on the menu tonight at his restaurant.  And how fresh it will be!


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