Beth Rodden is a connoisseur of fine food, fine times and sweet lines to climb. And below is a bit of insight into one of Beth's recent adventures where the topic of food seems more serious than the days spent bouldering and sending lines in the final days of the summer sun. No surprise really, because without the food, there would be no adventure... or at least the energy to motivate one. Enjoy a look into the line of food thought that Beth brings to the table on her trips.
I think everyone must have a favorite food. Mine are strawberries. Especially in the California summers, you can regularly find me eating basket after basket of fresh strawberries from the Farmers Markets. At times I’ve wondered if I have a problem, buying nine baskets of strawberries one day and needing more a day or two afterwards. But somehow I rationalize my consumption with their health benefits, supporting the local organic farmers, etc.
On a recent trip to Norway, I started questioning my boyfriends consumption of peanuts. Peanut butter is by far and away his favorite food. I’ve made peanut butter layer cakes for his birthday, homemade peanut butter cups, peanut butter cookies, peanut butter cupcakes, peanut butter ice cream, the list goes on and on. There must be something in the family blood because his sister shares his passion for peanut butter, just a slightly different form the peanut butter: creamy instead of crunchy.
Everything in Norway is expensive, and nuts are no exception to the rule.
We brought some of our own food; beef jerkey and a decent stock of a variety of Clif products. My Clif products were pretty balanced with Bloks, different flavor Clif Bars, etc. However, he had found almost every product with the option of a peanut flavor and packed it. Peanut Butter Builders, Honey Roasted Peanut Mojo, Peanut Butter Pretzel Mojo, and Peanut Butter Crunch.
To add to this, we also bought a total of 6 jars of peanut butter while we were over there. This was actually a conservation measure due to our budget, and I am sure had it been reasonably priced, we would have bought more.
With great climbing, great friends, and at least four forms of peanuts every day, our trip was one of the happiest I’ve seen him in some time. On an occasion or two I asked him if he maybe wanted to take a break from peanut butter one day and have a turkey sandwich or some eggs. My question was met with perplexity and the peanut consumption continued throughout our trip.
Returning home to the Bay area, one can argue that the best food in the world is available. With an abundance of locally grown organic produce and any variety of restaurant to choose from, we immediately delved in to spoiling ourselves with amazing food. Unfortunately for our palettes, I soon got the climbing/road tripping itch, and our time at home got cut short.
We quickly hit the road again, to the Sierras and then on to Colorado. Pretty soon I started smelling the familiar smell of roasted peanuts when lunch was being made. Peanut Butter Clif products were again staples in our crag packs.
Finally on a trip to visit his sister I noticed him recycling our peanut butter jar less than one week into our trip. “Seriously?” I thought. “Five days and the jar is empty?” As I was just about to say something, his sister smiled, pulled down a jar from a huge stash on the shelf and opened it for him.
I suppose if someone questioned my consumption of strawberries, I would look at them like they were deranged and crazy. I have a few more days in Colorado, and I know that my first stop on my way home is going to be at the farmers market to buy a basket, or ten, of strawberries.
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- Bryan Cole