With a love for the land and all it provides, foodie and sustainable living enthusiast Kitty Edwards takes us on a culinary tour of her island home.
WBM: Who is Kitty Edwards?
KITTY: I am just a St. Thomian who loves her home very much and wants to share that with anyone who will listen to my occasionally random ramblings.
WBM: You’ve recently started your website My Island, My Home. What inspired you?
KITTY: It really is my love for my island. I have always cared very deeply for my home, and in every job, project, anything, my main motivation has been to better the island for my fellow islanders and visitors alike. The final push to create the website came from a very random conversation at a random bar on a random afternoon. And from there it’s just been growing and evolving and telling me what wants to happen.
WBM: What kind of topics do you cover on the site?
KITTY: So far it’s been about local produce, cooking, recycling, local community events, and the perpetual search for ways to live healthy, happy, sustainable lives. The big picture is sustainable living on St. Thomas, but I want to create a message that will inspire anyone, anywhere, to live better lives and to help each other and the environment–and eat delicious food. Everyone should eat local, fresh, delicious food.
WBM: If you had to recommend three local food gems, what would they be and why?
KITTY: That is an impossible question because I love food and I want to eat all of it, but… number one has got to be a farmers’ market. I know this doesn’t seem like the expected answer, but there is no better place to get local delicious food! You can go out to Bordeaux–or Food Fair–and eat some amazing Ital food, and sample dishes, and produce from so many farmers! Number two, Nagee’s (Nagee Vegetarian and Ital Catering) in the country is delicious. Another Ital place, I swear I am not vegetarian, but it is just too good to pass up. And number three, hands down no questions asked, is your own kitchen! Go out and buy produce from farmers, start a garden, join a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), and cook delicious fresh food with your family and friends in the comfort of your own home.
WBM: What are five local foods or dishes that every local and visitor should try at least once?
KITTY: I think everyone should eat some fresh fish that was caught that day. It can be at a fish fry on the side of the road–Petra at Coki Beach is always a sure thing when she’s cooking!–fresh catch of the day at a restaurant, or go fishing and cook it yourself. I’m all about being sustainable and that includes learning a little bit of self-sufficiency. Next, go find some callaloo. This will most likely have a ton of fresh greens and other local delicacies and is delicious to boot! [As for] other local faves, local pumpkin lends itself to a variety of local dishes–check the MIMH website for a great soup recipe–goat water is my favorite soup ever, and I guess I’ll finish off my five with a simple salad made entirely of locally grown produce. You’ll probably want to do that last one at home, but I like to combine produce I’ve purchased from a local farmer with tomatoes and herbs from my garden to make an unforgettable dinner. Random enough for ya?
WBM: What advice would you give to someone looking to live a sustainable lifestyle?
KITTY: Talk to people, ask questions wherever you go, explore new places. I’ve met so many people who are convinced that there’s nothing you can do to live a sustainable life on St. Thomas. Well, I can tell you that 99% of my grocery shopping is local, there are farmers looking for composting material, and there are always new people looking for new ways to help the environment so get out there and make it happen! You can also get on the My Island, My Home Facebook page and let me know what it is you can’t find!
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