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    Lunchbox Blahs? Go Global with Vegan Lunchbox Around the World

    “Mom, I’m tired of the same thing every day.” My kid is in pre-school. Clearly I have hit a rut with lunch box creativity when the single-least adventurous eating demographic is griping. Must be time for some inspiration. Or just more time. Packing lunches is tough, to get specifically “lunch” items, it means adding a […] More

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    Organic Marin

    The September issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition will publish a widely distributed study that contradicts previous research pointing to health benefits of organic over conventional. The release of the study findings made headlines across major news sources such as CNN and UK news outlets like The Independent and Daily Mail. So, is […] More

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    Top Chef Season Six Interview: Chef Preeti Mistry

    The next season of Top Chef may just be a little greener when it premieres on August 19 as Chef Preeti Mistry brings a sustainable approach along with her knives Chef Preeti Mistry runs Charlie’s Café at Google in her job as an Executive Chef for Bon Appétit Management Company. An average day on her […] More

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    Getting Greener with America’s Best BBQ

    I come from a “barbecue town.” Correction, I come from, arguably, The Barbecue Capital of the Free World. This is, of course, Kansas City. Now, all of you in Memphis can protest along with the Brisket Brigade from Texas. But, there it is. I’ve thrown down the grill mitt. Because of my location, I can […] More

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    Mid-Week Food Fun

    Are you are a blues fan, dig eclectic jazz, or have your iPod memory maxed out? Like food? Ever notice how many songs have food metaphors in them? Ready to play on a Wednesday? This quick little quiz will see if you can name the song and band for each of these lyrics that include […] More

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    Cooking Green: How to Reduce Your “Cookprint”

    Move over, Eat Local. Kate Heyhoe challenges us to reduce our other food-related carbon footprint — our “cookprint.” Heyhoe’s latest book, Cooking Green, is based on the idea that how we cook can make as much an environmental difference as what we cook. The book covers many of the current issues like food choices, food […] More

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    Local Food Movement: Are We There Yet?

    Sitting across the breakfast table, and the world’s biggest pancakes ever, from Jeff at Sustainablog, we both nod our heads in an observation — green is only going to work if it goes mainstream, becomes normal. An every day thing. Does that mean my tenure is done as a local food activist and writer? Well, […] More

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    Vegan Soul Kitchen

    Just to be transparent here, I am not a vegan. This doesn’t stop me from exploring Bryant Terry’s latest book, Vegan Soul Kitchen. I like the earthy blend of soul food traditions that Terry creates so well for this book. The twist, of course, is that the collard green recipe doesn’t call for bacon — […] More

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    Act Now to Make School Lunches Better

    No. You don’t have to don a hair net and slop “taco pie” onto plates yourself. But you can take some steps to replace that taco pie with a salad bar of local veggies and grassfed meat. But you have to act fast. The current stimulus plan allows funding for reform of the Child Nutrition […] More

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    Food Safety: Ask the Expert Dr. Marion Nestle

    In the wake of the peanut butter recalls, and well, years of food safety issues, the Senate and House are reviewing bills that will strengthen our food safety laws. Opinions on the bills vary from the positive to fears of what the bills mean for small farmers. While I plan on reading the actual legislation […] More

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    Change and Your Food System

    Updates on Obama, Stimulus and Food Policy in Washington Stimulating an Appetite for More Just over three percent of the massive stimulus price tag is allocated to food programs including food stamps, meals for elderly, after-school food programs and WIC — the Special Nutrition Supplement Program for Women, Infants and Children. Advocates for food programs […] More

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    Maryland May Ban Controversial Food Dyes

    While national policies have left a lot to be desired regarding food safety, states have taken a lot of steps forward to combat food issues. Consider the state and city bans on transfats, New York’s mandate for calorie labeling on fast food menus. Even as the FDA and USDA fail, for many reasons, to step […] More

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    Chocolate with Love and a Conscience

    Valentine’s Day and chocolate, it’s an ethical eater’s dilemma for certain. All that worry about carbon footprint, fair trade, ogranic. “But, Honey, it wasn’t eco-friendly!” may not help your cause on Feb. 14th with a real chocolate-loving sweetheart. Here’s a relationship that won’t require any compromises: Askinosie. Ask what? Rare, Single Bean Origins, Even Rarer […] More

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    High Fructose Corn Syrup Often Contains Mercury

    There has been a lot of criticism heaved onto China, rightly so, over the use of melamine in foods. Perhaps we should save more of that outrage for closer to home. Three days ago, the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy published their findings in association with the Environmental Health Journal study: Mercury was found […] More

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    Heirloom: Notes from an Accidental Tomato Farmer

    Even as a bitter cold front is keeping the temperature in the single digits, I am thinking about warmer days. You see, this is the time of year that seed catalogs arrive and I spend winter nights huddled under a comforter, gazing at jewel-toned heirloom vegetables, ordering seeds, and counting the days until the last […] More

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    Choice Cuts: Get a Guide to Sustainable Meat Buying

    Few other foods are as fraught with environmental issues as meat. From the treatment of animals, to the environmental impacts of factory farms, to the recalls and health questions, it’s all become a rather meaty issue, pardon the pun. As consumers demand better choices, those items appear at the market, often with confusing labels and […] More

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    Low Carbon New Year’s Dinner Party

    If your waistband permits, here is one more seasonal, sustainable menu for the last of the holiday parties ahead. This is an elegant, yet healthy sit-down dinner for New Year’s, just right after a season of perhaps too many cookies! It’s also one to bookmark for next year’s Thanksgiving menu. Join in the feast for […] More

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    The Low Carbon Holiday Menu Part 1: Midwest

    Giving Mother Earth a Gift This Holiday Season by Cooking Green. Can a winter’s holiday feast be local and sustainable? It doesn’t seem such an easy task, even for a locavore like myself as I contemplate turnips, a few remaining pumpkins and sweet potatoes. Even so, with some resourcefulness and help from regional chefs of […] More

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    Who Should Be the Next White House Chef? Bryant Terry

    Another chef on my personal short list for the White House (Kitchen) Cabinet would be Bryant Terry. He cooks some amazing food as you can tell from his “Eco-Soul Kitchen” posts at TheRoot.com and the pages of his cookbooks, Grub and the forthcoming Vegan Soul Kitchen, but it is Terry’s work in the realm of […] More

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    Food for Thought: We Are What We Eat

    The Journal of the American Dietetic Association just published a study that answered my question, “Why Eat at Fast-Food Restaurants: Reported Reasons among Frequent Consumers.” According to the study, the main reasons people eat fast food: It’s Fast: 92 percent Easy to Find/Get: 80 percent. Tastes Good: 69 percent Cheap: 63 percent. Fast, easy, cheap. […] More

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    Who Wants to Be the Next White House Chef?

    On my short list for job candidates who should be Obama’s White House Chef: Kurt Micheal Friese. As our President-Elect takes office and struggles to wrest the Farm Bill from the deathgrip of one of our nation’s largest lobbyist groups, I think Chef Friese would be ideal to serve up some good advice along with […] More

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    How Local Will Your Thanksgiving Be?

    The phone rang on Friday. It was our CSA farmer, “Farmer Dan.” We then went through the list of everything he had from the greenhouse and field and how much I needed. Arrangements were made for a special drop at one of the restaurants he sells to. Ten minutes later, part of my menu for […] More

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    Who Wants to be Obama’s Chef?

    Forget President-Elect Obama’s cabinet, what’s on his table? There’s lots of talk about Obama’s pick for White House Chef. Here’s an overview of who’s on the short list, plus who should be on the list. Think you’re the one? Find out how to let us know. So, who’s might be cooking? You can scratch Rick […] More

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    Even Chickens Have a Reason to Celebrate Today

    As the world celebrates a historic Presidential election in the U.S., as democrats take more seats in Congress, and, as many of us nurse our post-victory party hangovers, even chickens have a reason to celebrate. Or, at least the chickens in California. You see, Prop 2 passed in our nation’s largest agricultural state. This law […] More

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    Top Five Scariest Vegetables

    © Bernd Juergens | Dreamstime.com Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Beet Leery of the leek? Afraid of asparagus? Broccoli your personal Boggart? It seems witches are not the only green thing that scares us. You are not alone. According to a 2007 study published in the American Journal of Medicine, […] More

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    Melamine-Tainted Candy Recall

    The store shelved are flooded with “fun size” treats in orange and black bags. It’s Halloween season, and candy is certainly on the minds of every kid I know this time of year. It’s on my mind for different reasons. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has issued a voluntary recall notice for the Sherwood Brands […] More

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    EDB Attack of the Vegetables Week

    The closest I have come to my own Iron Chef experience would be my ongoing Battle of Orange Food. This is a strange phenomenon at our house in which, one day, our child who LOVED everything orange in baby foods decided she no longer liked orange vegetables. For no reason. The challenge was on. I […] More

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    National Sushi Party, You’re Invited

    Sushi. It’s the last topic you’d expect to see on a sustainable food site. But Monterrey Bay Aquarium is inviting you to go out and eat sushi between October 22 and 28 as part of a nationwide sustainable seafood awareness campaign. If you join the National Sushi Party, be sure to take along the new […] More

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    Attack of the Vegetables!

    Starting Monday night, Fine Living Network will be showing Iron Chef “Attack of the Vegetables” week. All vegetable. All week. It’s even the Japanese Iron Chef version. I’m guilty of liking Iron Chef — even the American version. It’s the only TV I watch once in a while. My favorite episodes are always the ones […] More

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    Food for Thought

    Dear Farmer-in-Chief Michael Pollan writes a letter to the future president to explain why the health care crisis, energy independence, and climate change cannot be solved without addressing our  Some compelling facts from the essay include; “After cars, the food system uses more fossil fuel than any other sector of the economy — 19 percent […] More

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    Food for Thought

    Food Crisis Quote of the Week “The essential purpose of food, which is to nourish people, has been subordinated to the economic aims of a handful of multinational corporations that monopolize all aspects of food production, from seeds to major distribution chains, and they have been the prime beneficiaries of the world crisis,” H. E. […] More

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    Grow It, Cook It

    It’s late in the year; harvest season is upon us. If this year in local food has had a “theme” it would be the victory garden. Growing your own has a new appeal. If you haven’t started your garden yet, maybe it’s a bit late, but it’s not too early to think about sharing the […] More

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    Amazing, Intriguing Health Benefits of Turmeric

    I have a great fondness for curry dishes. There’s something about the warm, earthy spice combinations that makes me crave all the variations from Indian to Thai, Vietnamese to even my own attempts at home. A few recent studies of turmeric, one of the main curry ingredients, have given me new reasons to love curry […] More

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    Our Kids as Lab Mice: Pondering Junk Food, Schools and Behavior

    © Emilia Stasiak | Dreamstime.com A while back, I pondered the mystery of why mice won’t eat the outer shell of a peanut M&M. Perhaps mice know something we don’t? You may agree after reading about an elementary school experiment with mice and junk food. Each year, Sister Luigi Frigo’s second grade class in Cudahy, […] More

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    Farmers Market Fare

    It’s fall. The telltale signs have been arriving for a couple weeks now — pumpkins among the watermelons at the farmers market; the winter squashes alongside the zucchini; dwindling tomatoes; arrival of cole crops for a brief second season of greens, mostly kale and chard and heartier greens. Summer’s berries are gone, peaches are fading […] More

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    The Great Chili Friday Controversy

    A barrage of emails flooded my work inbox. Usually this indicates some kind of burning deadline or project gone awry. The topic of such frenzied communication in this case? Chili Fridays. Given the, uh, heat of the chili debate, I decided a bit of research was in order. It is time to settle the Chili […] More

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    Food for Thought

    Stevia Sweetener Safe or Not? Just as soft drink companies are poised to introduce new products sweetened with Stevia-derivative rebiana, a new 26-page report by toxicologists at the University of California, Los Angeles showed in several laboratory tests that the sweetener causes mutations and DNA damage, which raises the prospect that it causes cancer. Based […] More

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    Farmers Market Fare

    As I walked through the farmers market this weekend I saw the first pumpkins showing up alongside the still abundant tomatoes and even corn and peppers. I love this time of year where it feels like everything is in season all at once especially zucchini. Except, perhaps, the fresh berries that I will miss. As […] More

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    Farmers Market Fare

    As August turns to September, the seasons’ bounty becomes a mixed blessing of both summer and fall. The last of the sweet corn is sold alongside the first few small butternut squash. It’s time to relish the last of the beautiful heirloom tomatoes. The final week of berries, a longer lasting crop this year by […] More

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    Mooove away from the rBGH, Monsanto

    Monsanto announced on August 6 it will sell off its controversial genetically engineered animal drug, recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone (rBGH). Organic Consumers Association helped organize an email campaign against the drug for the last several years, generating over a quarter of a million emails and petition signatures against the use ofr rBGH. Historically, Monsanto also […] More

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    Farmers Market Fare 15

    It’s still August, and thus, still tomato season. Around our house, we are eating about 15 lbs. per week. It’s a lot of tomatoes. Yet, tomatoes are so versatile, so easy to cook in so many ways. Come December, they will be the first on the list of fresh produce that I miss most. If […] More

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    Food for Thought

    I am currently stuck at the car shop, having been towed here this morning. Over my shoulder, the TV is blaring day time game show, Price is Right in between ads for term life policies, diabetes mail order drugs, hemorrhoid medication, and Ex Lax. Clearly, I am the wrong demographic. But I remember why I […] More

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    Farmers Market Fare 14

    Farmers Market Fare is back this week for the seriously hot days of summer. Despite the heat, I’ve been out and about doing farm tours. Last weekend was Tomato Fest, with a celebration of heirloom tomatoes, chef demonstrations, barbecue, music. If you have a chance to get out to a farm tour event like this, […] More

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    No Farms, No Food

    We went on a field trip yesterday, us and another family. The trek took us pretty far out of our every day and all the way up to a sheep farm north of our city. The farm was celebrating the launch of its cheese production with a tasting and food and wine. The two women […] More

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    Farmers Market Fare 13

    I was thinking, last hot July Saturday, as we were stuck like sardines in the farmers market, that maybe this whole local food thing is catching on. Maybe, I thought, I don’t need to promote it so much. Well, maybe. The demand has to grow if the supply is going to. Next season, the farmers […] More

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