There’s a food movement going on in America and to substantiate this claim I direct your attention to the edible offerings sold on Etsy. As an Etsian (and merry cook and eater), a recent browse through our site left me aglow. People from all over are sharing their passion for jerky, marmalade, bread and pickles. There’s an honest cultural exchange going on with cooks offering gourmet samples of regional and personal specialties. Shopping for food on Etsy means an East coaster can sample stone ground wheat crackers from Breadfarm in Edison, Washington, a Southerner can sample a dizzying array of lollies from Sweet Lollipop Shop in Londonberry, New Hampshire, and a Midwesterner can taste Brooklyn’s very own Whimsy and Spice’s crazy delicious marshmallows.
What’s inspiring about all this is that buyers and producers interact directly — an all together too rare occurrence, if you ask me. The product in turn becomes personalized, adding immeasurable value to the exchange. Knowing that Little Snow Flakes’ shop was started bya stay-at-home mom who channeled her love of baking into a business makes her treats all the more delicious.
Browsing for holiday gifts over the weekend confirmed what I already knew. From the South, to the Midwest, the North and over to the West coast, people are making caramels, honeys, jams, and beef jerky. In October I was at the Good Food Awards (as a taste judge and representative of Etsy) and sampled 60-plus jams. The submissions reflected the diversity I’m speaking of, guided by the vast array of Etsy sellers. Handmade food, along with pop-up restaurants, CSAs, kitchen incubators, and an ever growing number of farmer’s markets, are making sure homemade, good food has a growing place in the market place.
This post comes on the heels of a recent shopping trip through Etsy’s plants and edibles section. Who knew shopping for stocking stuffers could be so inspiring? Red, green and silver Hershey kisses will have no place on our mantle this holiday season. Instead, I’m hoping for a charmed scene where I sip hot cocoa (dotted with Whimsy and Spice’s marshmallows) while my niece and nephews unwrap Have It Confections’ Cherry Walnut nougat and peppermint bark from Nicole’s Handmade Treat, while my grandmother opens Lemon Bird’s pretty preserves from Los Angeles, California. This vision is completed with a sweet story where I tell my family about the makers of these treats. The last part is what I look forward to most.