Inspiring is the one word that comes to mind when I think about this week’s show. Both of my guests inspire me, and I believe you, the listener, will feel the same way after tuning in. It’s very easy to become cynical looking at the devastation of our natural resources, and the plundering of the environment that goes on in a world dominated by industrial agriculture in the guise of feeding the ever-growing population of human beings. I think a little cynicism may have just snuck through in the previous sentence. BUT…..Deborah Madison and Fred Kirschenmann, through their words and actions, can pull us out of that dark spot where it’s too easy to become enmeshed in futility, and turn our attention to the immense change that is the reality of the present and future cultivation of our planet.
It’s an honor to welcome Deborah back to the show. We’re planning to talk seasonally so she can offer insights into what fresh foods play well with the weather. Though we have a variety of micro climates in the lower 48 states there are plenty of foods that are either grown locally or easy to find at the market or store that represent the changing seasons on our plate. For decades Deborah has championed the use of local/regional produce, and showcased that world in numerous award-winning cookbooks like Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone, and Vegetable Literacy. In this visit, we’ll focus our discussion on the abundance of delights still available in the autumn, and provide some assistance for home cooks to not only expand their repertoire, but revel in the experience.
During our “Iowa Cooks” segment, Fred Kirschenmann, Distinguished Fellow at the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture at Iowa State University, and President of Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture in New York, provides a vision of how significant positive change is not only already in motion in the cultivation and production of our food, but why it is inevitable.
Popping vitamins has never been my thing, but I have plenty of friends who load up every single day and have followed that regime for years. In talking with them about their supplement intake I’ve never been convinced they really notice tangible results, but, instead, rely on the simple rationalization that “more is better” when it comes to filling the body with “super foods.” OK, maybe I could buy that, but in the form of a pill?
Click on READ MORE below.
Deborah Madison’s cookbooks have occupied treasured spots on my bookshelves since 1987 when she wrote The Greens Cook Book along with Edward Espe Brown. Fast forward 27 years, three James Beard Awards plus many other accolades, and Madison, though not a vegetarian, continues her love affair with vegetables.
The New Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone came out this past spring, an update to her classic Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone published in 1997. Last year’s Vegetable Literacy went far beyond a recipe book as Madison drew on her insights over several decades of cooking, including stints in professional kitchens, and as a gardener, enlightening readers with the interconnected web of relationships within the same botanical family.
Click on "Read More" for recipes from Vegetable Literacy.
“Each spice has a special day to it. For turmeric it is Sunday, when light drips fat and butter-colored into the bins to be soaked up glowing, when you pray to the nine planets for love and luck.”
― Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, The Mistress of Spices
Claire Cheney shares her love of spices with GREAT TASTE listeners in the first part of this week's show. Claire recently returned from another journey to Asia where she engaged in numerous intimate exchanges of information with sustainable spice growers. Our visit with Claire will spice up your cooking adding new layers of flavor to favorites like guacamole and enhance your knowledge of cinnammon, saffron, star anise, and other exotic spices.
Her blog, Aromatum, is beautifully written, enchanting and transporting the reader to exotic locales perfumed with the essence of each particular spot.
It's outdoor Farmers' Market season and the Fairfield version is open from 3:00 pm-6:00 pm Wednesdays, and 8:00 am-1:00 pm on Saturdays at the corner of Court and Grimes in Howard Park. Distinctive personalities and an amazing variety of food products abound there. I chatted with a few folks, including 90 years young Ernie Hinkle, but there are plenty more farmers and artisans for you to enjoy.
Sustainable Farms' Dean Goodale told me, "All the growers here are really excited to see so many spring items springing out of the soil. I really encourage everyone who shops at the market to get to know all their farmers, ask questions, and tell us how you are using the different types of produce or other items."
For the Farmer's Market near you check out the Local Harvest site.
"It is, I feel, our apparent reluctance to recognize the interrelated nature of the problems and therefore the solutions, that lies at the heart of our predicament and certainly on our ability to determine the future of food."
— HRH Prince Charles, The Prince of Wales
The highlight address at "The Future of Food" conference on May 4, 2011 at Georgetown University was given by HRH the Prince of Wales. Among food activists Prince Charles is a well-known organic farmer who has advocated sustainable practices for many years. His address, which challenged the belief that industrial agriculture and large agribusiness are necessary to feed the world's ever-growing population, was published last week by Rodale Press. The Prince's Speech: On the Future of Food is a rallying call to not only advocates of sustainability, but also presents a vision that recognizes "the wider and important social and economic parameters-how we can feed a global population approaching 9 billion people and still safeguard public health, keep jobs, and protect our environment."
Our guest, Robert P. Martin, Senior Policy Advisor-Center for a Livable Future, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, was one of the "Future of Food" event organizers. He has been a key player in getting The Prince's Speech published so its ideas can be shared with the general public. Please join us on Great Taste for a discussion of the critical food issues that effect every single one of us now and future generations. You can view some excerpts from the Georgetown conference here.
Kathy and I are back in the studio this week with a "live" show. I've been on the road enjoying meals in Las Vegas, Chicago, and Philadelphia. One thing I finally realized is that I would make a very poor food critic. A food critic does visit a restaurant several times (or should) before putting into print what, in some markets, determines a spot's success or eventual boarding up. After and between those visits there are numerous other establishments that have to be subjected to the scribe's palate. It's a never-ending story of moving on and not going back until it's time to do another review.
What are the main challenges facing food-related small businesses that would like to or already integrate the principles of sustainability/organic/bio-dynamic into their models? We'll talk with individuals who operate a broad spectrum of business types-a subscription run greenhouse and wholesale produce operation-Dean Goodale, internet based sales and education-Eric Rusch, a retail artisan baker-Tim Freeberg-Renwick, and local culinary school director-Chef Gordon Rader.
Come by the studio and join in the discussion as we explore how to grow (bad pun) a local food economy. Of course, we'll have some food because what's Great Taste without any great tastes?
Wednesday, 7-8 PM, rebroadcast on Friday 7-8 AM. Follow us on Twitter where we tweet the Daily Dish daily
Wow! It's summer, it's hot, and who wants to cook? So let us help you with some easy ideas to make the kitchen a really cool place to hang out. Kathy will turn the studios into our normal GREAT TASTE festival of food.
Also, Marissa Markowitz will tell us how to throw a "sustainable" party using local foods, "green" plates, sporks, & more.
Plus some kitchen tips you won't want to miss. Have your pencil and paper ready or your digital memo recorder.
We're serving up some GREAT TASTES from 7-8 PM on Wednesday and Friday's rebro beginning at 7 AM.