Sunday, December 6, 2009
Sunday, November 22, 2009
I bought fabulous huge Jewel Yams, young kale, mustard, and turnip greens from Charles and Bobbie Carpenter Clark at their produce market where they sell the vegetables they raise on their farm east of town.
At the middle school I served baked yams, greens cooked with onion and smoked turkey, and corn pone made on my cast iron griddle. We drizzled the pone with local made sorghum syrup and Ribbon Cane Syrup. Yummy was the general consensus!
I bought a smoked turkey wing and used it for the rich taste it adds to the greens. It adds little fat and can easily replace the traditional smoked pork hock.
The next leg of the journey took me even further south followed by a hugh leap northward!
Saturday, November 21, 2009
Monday, November 9, 2009
Sunday, November 1, 2009
Today I'm off to Pine Bluff, Arkansas; through the Delta at Clarksdale, cross the Mississippi River at Helena. Today my driving sound track will be Bessie Smith, especially her Backwater Blues, and Robert Johnson. I might even stop for a lunch of crayfish or maybe fried oysters!
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Friday, October 23, 2009
Thanks for your email. I agree. I
publications, but we don
that part what not up to us. Not that I am giving you an excuse, but we
Sounds like you have some interesting thoughts and passions. I hope you
are involved or will get involved with the inner-city food communities
wherever you are. People need inspiration to continue the work they do.
They need neighbors and words of encouragement and positivity. If we spend
time nit picking terms people use, we are spending energy that could be
well spent making construction impact to people
statements about the article, but nonetheless, it
publication that is being read by many people-far and wide in this
region-from all walks of life. If articles like this even spur a tiny new
thought of recognition to our cities less advantaged people, to changing
our industrialized food systems so they can be more equal and enable access
for all and support our small farms, then they are worthwhile. We can find
wrong in everything. And we can find right in most of those things as
well. We are feeding people who don
are teaching kids how tomatoes grow and teaching adults how to cook with
chard. We are facilitating communication between kids and adults who share
stories and pass on culture. Whether we are a "food dessert or not, the
nearest grocery store is almost a half mile away. And the closest and most
convenient place for food is a corner store, without produce for sale. We
have a long way to go to continue to improve the work we do and influence
it, but nonetheless, I believe we are making at least a tiny difference.
And that to me, is inspirational and worth waking up for. The child who
planted a tree yesterday came back today to make sure it was alive and had
water. Yesterday, she didn
Warm regards for a brighter and healthier future for all,
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
In response to FLAVOR MAGAZINE, June/July 2009 article titled Not Quite What I Was Looking For under the page header 'in the food desert."
Paul Ryan's description of his personal journey from home gardener to community gardener was timely. It was good to follow one man's path to urban farming.
It is the header "in the food desert" I find problematical. Food justice is among the most troublesome in the modern repetory of social issues. The communities of which Ryan speaks are not 'deserts.' They are neighborhoods full of people, with desires, ambitions, energy, and, yes, poverty. But they are not the empty wasteland implied by the word 'desert.' They are deserts only in the lack of enough grocery stores, too many fast food joints, and disgusting school food furnished via putatively 'free lunch systems." It is only a desert in that folks outside the community tend not to see the residents within; and having made their pronouncements can then feel generous, or not, as the mood strikes them, while ignoring the grassroots efforts of the inhabitants of that 'desert.' It is a desert because Food Lion or Giant, or Kroger can't be persuaded or shamed to build there even though there are often small Mom and Pop establishments carrying the full weight of the whole community's needs. It is a desert because the zoning restrictions often put insurmountable barriers to alternative uses of empty lots or other abandoned spaces perfect for gardens or community gathering places. In these 'deserts' most of the residents are working poor and lower middle class people of color.
Nothing about Ryan's article describes finding a desert; his first search for a community garden finds one quickly but it is one with a long waiting list - evidence of interest, I'd say. He didn't invent the 7th Street Garden; there they were, waiting for him to join them. Poor inner-city folks aren't sitting waiting for the foodies to come save them. They are already organizing to take back their city spaces and use them for the good of their elders, their youth, and their families. Not a desert at all. Ryan's experience with an activist community garden could be replicated all over the country; in Charlottesville, Virginia with the Quality Community Council or with Chicago's Graffetti and Grits urban food cooperative/garden initiative, just to name two.
So I would suggest we seek to find a more humane vocabulary; perhaps the header could have been "seeking food justice" or "finding an inner-city food community."
Monday, October 12, 2009
collards; broad flat deep green collards. Let's hear it for the QCC
(Charlottesville's Quality Community Council)!!
Today I prepared the collards for the freezer; 15 min cutting out the
stems, 5 minutes cutting the leaves in julliene strips; 5 minutes
sauteeing the onion in olive oil and 45 minutes cooking the collards
Yes, I could have used bacon or smoked pork hock but I may want to
serve these collards to my vegetarian daughter-in-law.
Yum! Four quart freezer bags of luscious greens.
And our lovely flock of hens will love the stems for a treat tomorrow.