Beyond the Crock: On Lacto-Fermenting

I was very proud this fall when I finally got to use my Nani’s heavy, lacquered earthenware crock – the same one that she used to make the cherry brandy that my cousins and I would lick pooled from the … Continue reading

Locavore on the Road: Artisanal Cheese & the Marin County Cheese Trail

I’ve spent what would likely add to up to countless hours contemplating the purchase of various cheeses at locations ranging from Whole Foods to Stinky Bklyn to a “serve yourself” fridge on a country roadside in Western Massachusetts. I clearly remember … Continue reading

The Changing Meaning of Locavorism

The term locavore was coined in 2005 by Jessica Prentice, who, along with Sage Van Wing and Dede Sampson, made a commitment to eat only food sourced within a one-hundred-mile radius of their homes in Northern California. This effort was … Continue reading

“Coopetition” and the Spirit of Artisanal Food

I shouldn’t have been surprised in the least when Michaela Hayes, owner of Crock and Jar, a Brooklyn-based company that specializes in making pickles and the teaching the art of pickling and canning, said that a main tenet of her … Continue reading

On “Artisanal” and “Sustainable”

As I’m researching and writing my book Small Batch: The Fall and Rise of Artisanal Cheese, Chocolate, Pickles, and Alcoholic Spirits, I purposely chose the term “artisanal” in part because it seemed to be the best to represent that handmade, … Continue reading

An Everlasting Meal of Chicken Soup

Inspired by the poetic and lovely book An Everlasting Meal by Tamar Adler, I filled a pot with water and plunked in a salted, whole chicken. This might have seemed like blasphemy a week earlier. Boiled chicken had a very … Continue reading

What Vermont Blueberries Helped Me Remember

Maybe a dozen miles as the crow flies, it took us nearly forty minutes to get there. We went up a dirt road and crested a mountain, down the other side until deep ruts turned to asphalt. And then we … Continue reading

Locavore on the Road: Learning to Slow Down on Rhode Island’s Coast

On day eight of a twelve-day stay, I realized why they called the house “Treetops”. We had switched rooms – swapping the extra-large master bedroom with the other couple with whom we were sharing the house for a smaller one … Continue reading