The Ethical Omnivore is a user-friendly recipe and handbook that will open your eyes to a better way to buy, cook and eat.
We wrote this book to answer the questions we're asked every day in our butchery and it's an unapologetic paean of praise for regenerative agriculture and the importance of community.
"Wise, informed and occasionally funny, this is the cookbook for anybody who truly cares about the meat they eat. Part anecdote, part searingly intellectual, and always heartfelt and wonderfully written, it’s the kind of book only the butchers who think we should eat less meat could write. What Laura and Grant espouse is food that is better for the animals, better for the planet, better for our communities, and ultimately better for you."
We live in an affluent era marked by an increasingly fraught relationship to food, and meat is arguably the most controversial ingredient. There is a communal ache for authenticity, for a way forward with good conscience.
Our book explores the solution: living with a conscience; asking the right questions of whomever sells you meat or of the labels you read; and learning how to respect the animal so much that you're willing to cook something other than chicken breast. We hope that it shows all of us how to live with less impact on the animals and environment that support us.
"This book – an earthy, warmly intelligent guide to the moral and environmental implications of what and how we eat - has come at exactly the right moment. Without shying from the hard truths, and without a speck of sanctimony, the authors set out a practical, meaningful and thoroughly inspiring path to a more hopeful food future.
From their passion for soil microbes to an honest description of abattoir practices to eye-opening truths about the horrifying destruction caused by interventionist agriculture (including intensive vegetable farming), Dalrymple and Hilliard show us how to mend our disconnection from nature, in the process honouring those imaginative, determined farmers already quietly regenerating and healing our land.
I can’t recommend this book highly enough – science-focused but with a contagiously energetic optimism, it’s the antidote to despair we so desperately need. Read it, give it to your friends, then cook for them with whole, natural food. We can start repairing our land and nourishing our souls by dinner time."
We're very grateful Matthew and Charlotte for their kind words. In fact, we're grateful to them both for lots of reasons including their friendship and enthusiastic support for Feather and Bone over the years (way before we decided to add yet another cookbook to your towering pile). Also, both of them contributed recipes to the book, which should be enough to get you all scurrying to add it to your collection!
But Matthew and Charlotte are only two of the many who built this book, because for us, this is a book about the power of community and the inspiring transformations that occur when vibrant communities flourish at every level - from microbial activity in the soil through to suburban human networks.
The first half of the book, 'Let's Talk' is an attempt to answer all the questions we're asked every day in the butchery and to explain why we do what we do, the way we do it. This is where we apply the lessons learned over 14 years working with visionary farmers, curious customers and our co-workers, some of whom are profiled in these pages.
The second half, 'Let's Eat', features recipes for eating the whole animal from all the wonderful members of our community - customers, farmers, chefs.
We're grateful to each and every one of these people, because without them, Feather and Bone wouldn't exist. We are what we are because of all these relationships.
The Ethical Omnivore will be in all good book shops including our excellent local independent, Better Read Than Dead from 4th August.