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by Christopher Riley



since you’re here, i imagine you want to know more about me, and this site.


tigress: that’s me. i live with M and two burmese cats named mahfouz and thor – we’ve been together for approximately forever. by day, and night, we (M & i, not the cats) produce electronic music events. for one half of the year we live 7 stories above the industrial bog of long island city, new york (just across the bridge from manhattan and just upwind of brookyn). and for the better half of the year we live in a little white farmhouse with a big garden in the southern berkshires of massachusetts (just east of the hudson valley, and just this side of new england).

i am a locavore. it was a long and windy road to that one, but i’m settled here. cooking with fresh, organic ingredients grown as close to home as possible, eating seasonally, and supporting local farmers who care about the environment, their workers and their livestock form the basis of my food choices. my diet is not 100% local, it’s more like an ever-fluctuating 80%, and things like tea, spices and olive oil will most likely always be in my larder.

choosing to eat this way was borne out of my frustration and sadness surrounding the abuse of factory-farmed animals, and concern for my own health and the health of the planet on which we live. growing what you eat – or knowing who does – is a political act no doubt, but…

eventually my whole world exploded:

6 years ago i couldn’t green a thumb to save my life. discovering the sensual pleasures of the earth, both in the dirt and in the kitchen, feeling rooted within a sense of time and place, and a connection with those who make up my local foodshed have become joyous by-products of a well-consumed life.

whether you grow your own or frequent your local farmers’ market, eating locally and seasonally isn’t difficult when things are shooting from the trees or falling off the ground. but it takes effort and skillz to stretch the seasons. luckily, this feeds my obsessive tendencies quite nicely.  basically what i’m saying is…

i’m about to get all pilgrim on your ass.

i eat real food. i drink raw milk. bread is my savior. and although i haven’t eaten meat or poultry in 15 years, i respect those who make conscious choices regarding the animals they eat. what works for me is a plant based diet with occasional well-sourced seafood. i’m inspired by historic foodways, and the art and crafts of home preserving and fermentation.  the mediterranean traditions flavor my kitchen quite often, as do the great eastern cuisines of the world that feature vegetables at the center of the plate.

i’m not your average crunchy veggie; i think farm fresh eggs might just be the perfect food, and i love me my dairy fat!

…i’m a preservationist.

tigress in a jam: jams, jellies, marmalades, syrups and other sweet preserves, and preserving ways are featured here. i’ll also jam on toasty things fit to be slathered, and other not-so-toasty ways to enjoy sweet preserves and the fruits of the earth.

tigress in a pickle: go here for a savor-toothed tigress. the focus is on quick, canned, and fermented pickles and other non-sweet preserves, including dairy. chutneys and salsas too, and the all important shizzles with picklz, i.e., the best (imo) pickle-pairings.

in addition to all things preserving, i reserve the right to roar on in season non-preserving cooking and eating, gardening and things-that-grow, traveling, things-around-my-lair, and other possibly completely random roars.

as i bound through this locavore life, learning how to stretch the seasons safely and deliciously has become a source of great joy, amazing tastes and endless creative expression in my kitchen. this blog has become a documentation of that journey. and best of all, a connection to an even wider community of others with the same desire to eat great food, consciously.

i’m glad you’re listening.

update nov 2013: i am no longer actively blogging but do intend to keep this site up so that you can continue to refer to the wealth of information here.

i haven’t gone completely cold turkey from the interwebs, you can hear me roar from time to time on twitterinstagram and pinterest.  i’ve also got a little thing (or 2) going with tumblr; a love poem, and some more-or-less personal kitchen notes organizing my ever growing cookbook collection.