During the month of September a handful of us at KTVA are challenging ourselves to eat food only grown and harvested in Alaska.

Each of us are setting individual and different guidelines to follow during the next few weeks, some are stricter than others. Full disclosure: my rules are on the more lenient side of the spectrum! However, I wanted the challenge to be feasible for me and my lifestyle.

Here are my guidelines: 

  • The main ingredients of my meals must be Alaska grown (protein, starches, vegetables and fruits).
  • Locally roasted coffee and locally brewed beer is OK.
  • OK to use seasonings, oil, vinegar and dressings not locally made.
  • Weekends are cheat days.

The list does give me some outs, but it's already been a challenge. I've learned you need to plan ahead. I stocked up on some essentials from the South Anchorage Farmers Market over the weekend, and spent just under $100 for the items seen on my counter below. I spent more money than I normally have would on these items at the grocery store, but I can taste the quality! The vegetables are fresh and flavorful. 

The Fireweed honey has also proved to be a staple for me in the mornings. I'm a grab-and-go type of person because I work so early, using the honey on a slice of Fire Island bread has made breakfast easy. I did not however, remember to pick up coffee which was a shock to the system! So far, I've gone cold turkey this week, but I do plan to swing by the store and pick some up eventually.

Lastly, eating local doesn't mean depriving yourself! We're lucky to live in a state with plenty of big game and seafood. I went to the Lindsey Stirling concert at the Alaska State Fair yesterday and picked up some crab legs from the Fish On food vendor. It was delicious, local and I didn't feel like left out of the fair food crowd. This week, my plan is to try different recipes using the freezer full of fish I caught this summer. I'll keep you posted!

If you have recipes you'd like to share, please email them to me at mmazurek@ktva.com.

I'm hosting KTVA's Instagram this week; check it out here.

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