Archive for the ‘eating’ Category

no hunger

July 13, 2009

As someone who eats on a very regular basis, never in want of food, I cannot fathom what it is like to wonder where my next meal is coming from. When I am hungry, I go to the cupboard or refrigerator, where there is always food stocked from the farmers market or grocery store. I am fortunate to be able to rely on produce that comes from local farms, and have the luxury to buy fresh food that comes from other places in this country, like California.

I recently read a post on elephant journal of a woman who, after returning to the US from a long sojourn in India, visited a supermarket. She literally wept at the bounty around her. We should all be so fortunate to realize the abundance we have.

For millions of children around the world, there is no bounty. There is no corner store, no fruit stand, no supermarket. There is only hunger.

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) recently reported that there are now over 1 billion people worldwide going hungry. Acute malnutrition affects 55 million children globally, resulting in 5 million childhood deaths every year (one child every six seconds). This is a predictable and preventable condition.

No Hunger is an international initiative, started by Action Against Hunger, asking Al Gore to make his next film about global hunger. The website features a trailer for No Hunger, and a petition addressed to the former Vice President that will be presented to him this December at the COP15 Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen.

The hope is that, as An Inconvenient Truth did for climate change, No Hunger will help shift public perceptions of hunger, and attract the support needed to reach every acutely malnourished child.

The treatment for severe acute malnutrition is not expensive—it costs about $50 per child and doesn’t require prescription drugs. Instead, it relies on nutrient dense, ready-to-use food products. These products can take a child from the brink of death and restore him to health in as little as six weeks.

In response to a desperate situation, ready-to-use plumpy’nut provides emergency nutrition to starving children.

follow this man: will allen

July 6, 2009

If you didn’t catch this weekend’s New York Times Magazine, you missed out on an article about one of the best role models for young Americans, and heck, old ones too. Will Allen — urban farmer, master composter, down-to-earth guy — is creating a community of people who care more about the food they put in their bodies, especially city dwellers who don’t have access to healthful food.

An excerpt:

Like others in the so-called good-food movement, Allen, who is 60, asserts that our industrial food system is depleting soil, poisoning water, gobbling fossil fuels and stuffing us with bad calories. Like others, he advocates eating locally grown food. But to Allen, local doesn’t mean a rolling pasture or even a suburban garden: it means 14 greenhouses crammed onto two acres in a working-class neighborhood on Milwaukee’s northwest side, less than half a mile from the city’s largest public-housing project.

And this is why Allen is so fond of his worms. When you’re producing a quarter of a million dollars’ worth of food in such a small space, soil fertility is everything. Without microbe- and nutrient-rich worm castings (poop, that is), Allen’s Growing Power farm couldn’t provide healthful food to 10,000 urbanites — through his on-farm retail store, in schools and restaurants, at farmers’ markets and in low-cost market baskets delivered to neighborhood pickup points. He couldn’t employ scores of people, some from the nearby housing project; continually train farmers in intensive polyculture; or convert millions of pounds of food waste into a version of black gold.

Read the rest

my l.o.v.e. – day 2 morning/afternoon

April 7, 2009

It’s day 2 of the, woohoo!

Related posts:

8:00 am – Start the day with fresh squeezed lemon and water. No adverse effects of note. Slept better last night, but still not great.

8:30 am – On the 2 train and feeling sleepy. Looking forward to dropping off the bottles from the day before and picking up my sustenance for the day. Another 7 meals waiting to be consumed.

Two things I appreciate about this journey. One: everything is prepared for me. Two: The vessels carrying the liquid and food for this week are either reusable (there’s a $2 deposit on every bottle) or compostable (the plastic containers for food items say “compostable” on the bottom) – plus they’re doled out in a reusable bag. I consider taking the plastic containers to a community garden for compost to see how long they take to break down. In a landfill, it would probably take years, but I guess it’s a little better than regular plastic.

Breakfast is served.

9:36 am – After downing my energy elixir (and forgetting to photograph it) I start course #2, orange/grapefruit juice. I’m a little nervous about it because when I drink citrus before eating in the morning I usually get heartburn.

10:20 am – No heartburn and no hunger, I’m a little tired, but feeling good.

10:51 am – A little pang of hunger that’s quelled by water.

11:20 am – Not really hungry. Not supposed to have #3 ’til after noon.

11:42 am – Getting hungry. Head hangs heavy as I read about insomnia for a copywriting assignment. Definitely not helping.

11:59 am – Sssoo huunngryy. Time for Veggie Vibrance!

Liquid lunch (sans booze, though this would make
a great Bloody Mary)

12:04 pm – Sip, sip. Mmm Mmm good.

12:17 pm – Burps taste like this morning’s energy elixir, which tastes like matcha green tea.

12:28 pm – I just got a craving for cheezy poofs. Fantasizing about Barbara’s Bakery baked cheese puffs.

1:24 pm – GGggrrrrr goes the stomach and the brain. This too, shall pass (I was told to repeat this to myself throughout the day by the folks at Organic Avenue).

1:31 pm – Whoa woozy! I think it’s time to eat.

Sunflower falafel. They taste better than they look in this shot.

1:47 pm – I want to pop these little falafel in my mouth and swallow them whole! They’re dry, crunchy, and crumbly – and I don’t want to waste one crumb. Tasty! Just like falafel. Though the initial touch to the tongue is reminiscent of coffee. This is what’s in ’em: sunflower seeds, almonds, garlic, sea salt, scallions, yellow onion, tahini, parsley, lemon olive oil, coriander, cumin, paprika, cayenne, shallot, black pepper, water, nama shoyu, scallions, parsley, red & green cabbage, red bell pepper. I think that might include the dipping sauce, which I’m tempted to eat on its own.

2:00 pm – After two falafels, the craziness is subsiding. I’m amazed at my reactions to hunger, and try to be really mindful of them.

So far today, I’ve had a hard time focusing. And the irritability thing has popped up, too. I put my greatest intention into not lashing out on people like a rabid dog. I find it less of a challenge to separate my hunger emotions from my response to others when I observe my feelings and let them pass.

2:30 pm – It’s that time of the day when I’m craving something sweet. I know my friend has a boxful of chocolate in her office that she brought back from Paris, but I must resist, even if it is calling to me in French.

3:04 pm – Having some hot water to curb the cravings.

3:14 pm – Getting sleeeeppyyy… zzzzzZZZZZ

3:46 pm – One of my biggest pet peeves is when people where too much cologne (or perfume or scented lotion). Makes me sick! Especially now.
4:01 pm – Someone sitting near me is talking about food – all animal products. Chicken, potato salad, turkey meatloaf, cheese, salami, crab cakes. It’s maddening! I imagine myself sitting at a big banquet table, like Audrey in National Lampoon’s European Vacation, stuffing my face until I blow up like a balloon. I guess that’s not very appealing.

4:22 pm – I’m letting my edamame salad warm to room temperature. I can think of nothing else but eating it.

4:31 pm – Mmmm… tastes like potato salad.

5:03 pm – Heading out for a Street Tree Bed Gardening workshop at Brooklyn Botanic Garden. More of the lovefast later!

new york times covers proposition 2:

October 26, 2008

support for humane farm animal treatment

[Wayne Pacelle, president of the Humane Society of the United States.
Image: Michael Kelley for The New York Times]

In the Barnyard Strategist, Maggie Jones for the New York Times details all sides of the story on Proposition 2 — the measure that will provide farm animals with an incremental improvement in their living conditions.

Proposition 2, co-sponsored by the Humane Society and Farm Sanctuary, the biggest farm-animal-rights group in the United States, focuses on what are considered the worst animal-confinement systems in factory farms. The ballot initiative, which voters will decide on Nov. 4, requires that by 2015 farm animals be able to stand up, lie down, turn around and fully extend their limbs. In effect that translates into a ban on the two-foot-wide crates that tightly confine pregnant pigs and calves raised for veal — a space so small that they can’t turn around. And it would eliminate so-called battery cages where four or more hens share a space about the size of a file drawer.

Read the rest.

The election is almost 1 week away!

But you still have time to help.

All I’m asking is that you help me reach my goal of having 20 friends donate $20 each to help 20 million animals. So far, 4 friends have showed their support.

Please click on the graphic below to donate to my $20/20 Campaign.

appetizing arts

October 20, 2008

Also at the Red Hook Harvest Festival were Elizabeth Johnson and Ludie Minaya of Conscious Cravers.

At the Harvest, Elizabeth and Ludie were selling some adorable and provocative t-shirts, with messages focused on healthy eating and farm practices.

What is Conscious Cravers all about?

[Conscious Cravers] are performance art food educators who use interactive skits, role plays and visuals to empower people to be conscious about their cravings and gain the skills they need to take responsibility for their health. We travel throughout the New York tri-state area (and beyond) with knives, cutting boards and portable burners in tow bringing the message of sound food for a sound mind and a sound body to anyone who is willing to listen to us.

Check out their workshop offerings.

The Appetizing Arts Exhibit

Be sure to catch this “exploration of food as fuel for artistic expression” on display at The Rising Arts Gallery in Brooklyn. The exhibit will feature photography, painting, and mixed media works by artists who use food as inspiration. Full details below:

Appetizing Arts

The Rising Arts Gallery
35 Claver Place #1
(btwn Fulton and Jefferson)
Brooklyn, NY 11238

Opening reception
Thursday, November 13th, 2008

On view until December 12th, 2008.

Read more about Appetizing Arts here.

red hook harvest

October 20, 2008

This past Saturday my friend Anne and I hopped on our bikes (after the helpful guys at Bicycle Station put Anne’s bike chain back on) and headed down to the Red Hook Harvest Festival hosted by Added Value and Herban Solutions at Red Hook Community Farm.

Truer words were never written

We arrived just in time to get a tutorial from Classie Parker on canning for the leaner months. She showed us how to “put some love into” pickled onions and dilly beans and we sampled some of her delicious canned peaches. Spectators were able to participate by canning their own veggies.

Classie’s puttin’ her love into it

Classie shows them how to can-can

There were all kinds of activities for kids: pumpkin picking and a carving contest, bite the apple on the string, and Halloween costume making from fabric scraps. Families had the opportunity to pet the farm’s chickens (whom, I’d like to add, were extraordinarily handsome).

Pickin’ pumpkins at the pumpkin patch

Here chickie-chickies

That’s one handsome chicken!

Swaying and bobbing for apples

Local restaurants including Applewood, The Good Fork, iCi, and Rice were serving up delicious soups and savories. I was happy to see that Rice sends their compost to the farm in these buckets.

Rice’s compost buckets

Companies like Tri-State Biodiesel, orgs like Brooklyn Greenway Initiative (we rode on part of the new bike path on the way to the fest), and nonprofits like Heifer International were on hand to answer questions and provide information to the public.

Local musicians provided entertainment, local students offered up African dance lessons, and the local farm stand was set up to sell fresh produce and meats.

Some of the entertainment

It was a beautiful, sunny day that brought together an urban community in an agrarian way.

Learn more about canning farm fresh food

banksy dolittle

October 17, 2008

Instead of talking to the animals, he talks for them. Today, I took a look at British street artist Banksy’s latest statement at The Village Pet Store and Charcoal Grill (7th Ave South btwn West 4th and Bleecker). Animal testing, commodity meat, fur, and general animal exploitation all demonstrated in a fun animatronic medium. Now through October 31st.

Baby McNuggets

Cat? No coat.

Fishy sticks

Thirsty dog

Monkey pawrn

Bunny beauty
(I found it interesting that he chose Orly nail polish, which is NOT tested on animals. Though there is also a Revlon polish on that bunny’s bureau.)

apple day, this sunday

October 17, 2008

Eat some apples in the big apple while learning simple ways to go green, this Sunday on the Lower East Side. It’s New York City Apple Day!

Sunday, October 19
11am to 4:30pm
Orchard St btwn Broome and Grand

  • Apple Tastings – Apple Pie to Chicken Apple Sausage to Chocolate Apple Truffles and Apples and Honey for Sukkot

  • Face painting and Family Activities for kids

  • Free giveaways! Toys, 500 Energy Efficient Light Bulbs, T-Shirts

  • Live Entertainment

  • Learn the best way to recycle

  • Learn how to save energy and money

  • Learn the simplest things to do in your home to Go Green

It’s true what they say, “an apple a day…”

I just read this fitting little tidbit from Yoga Journal editor Andrea Kowalski:

According to Ayurvedic medicine, apples help draw out of the body the heat that accumulates over the summer—heat that can dry out and cause digestive distress in the winter season. The pectin in apples also helps to clean and heal digestive mucosa, according to Ayurvedic doctor John Douillard.

Love apples? Share your favorite apple recipes here.

Honeycrisp, one of my favorites

an open letter to the new president

October 17, 2008

[Image source: 7×7]

Michael Pollan challenges the future president to take a serious look at revolutionizing the current state of the food industry in a recent NY Times article. An excerpt:

After cars, the food system uses more fossil fuel than any other sector of the economy — 19 percent. And while the experts disagree about the exact amount, the way we feed ourselves contributes more greenhouse gases to the atmosphere than anything else we do — as much as 37 percent, according to one study. Whenever farmers clear land for crops and till the soil, large quantities of carbon are released into the air. But the 20th-century industrialization of agriculture has increased the amount of greenhouse gases emitted by the food system by an order of magnitude; chemical fertilizers (made from natural gas), pesticides (made from petroleum), farm machinery, modern food processing and packaging and transportation have together transformed a system that in 1940 produced 2.3 calories of food energy for every calorie of fossil-fuel energy it used into one that now takes 10 calories of fossil-fuel energy to produce a single calorie of modern supermarket food. Put another way, when we eat from the industrial-food system, we are eating oil and spewing greenhouse gases. This state of affairs appears all the more absurd when you recall that every calorie we eat is ultimately the product of photosynthesis — a process based on making food energy from sunshine. There is hope and possibility in that simple fact.

Read the rest. [NY Times]

more about our emptied oceans

September 30, 2008

It seems like a challenging task to demonstrate how vast our negative impact on the oceans is. Most obviously because, when we look out at an open sea, we can’t see below the surface.

Randy Olson, documentarian and one-time marine biologist, shows us how depleted the oceans have become in a one minute video. He simply compares the observations of two ocean voyages 50 years apart. Pretty compelling stuff.

Read the NYT blog about it here.

Related post
fin, finito, bye bye fishies