An upstate entrepreneur is turning would-be compost into liquid gold: squash seed oil.
Recent Posts by Jessie Cacciola
A former vineyard goes farm to flask.
We were pleased years ago when Whole Foods launched sustainably-minded color-coding at the fish counter, as per the Blue Ocean Institute. Starting April 22 the grocer is phasing out the red-flagged fish altogether.
Earlier this week we got a whiff of chocolate, but it wasn’t from a heart-shaped box. Rather, it was from a flask—one of those little glass flasks with the typewriter-written labels from Kings County Distillery in Brooklyn. In time for the biggest chocolate buying day of the year the city distillery released a chocolate-flavored whiskey, available in Manhattan at the Park Avenue Liquor Shop. (We’d get on getting one stat, if we were you, since we hear Park Ave is already going through their second case.)
In the 1930s, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt saw that American farmers were producing too much; they weren’t earning off their extra work or surplus. In came the New Deal with the first-ever Farm Bill, set to end overproduction by paying farmers to grow less. In the ’70s, a man named Earl Butz, Secretary of Agriculture at the time, thought that idea was nuts, and so he paid farmers instead to “get big or get out”–referring of course to farming by the thousands of acres and those devoted to just a few crops. It was a perfectly good idea at the time for a country still discovering the value of its land and thenew global marketplace, which seemed to have no problem taking on the surplus. We couldn’t know then what has happened, which has also included farmers growing more crops for secondary, inedible products like corn syrup and cow feed rather than feeding us.
I sat down to a friend’s dinner table last week with a hunk of acorn squash roasted in brown butter, a mixed greens salad with a yogurt vinaigrette, root vegetable fritters, various jars of home-pickled and home-jammed produce, bread with goat cheese and red wine (a nice spicy one, for under 20 bucks)–all grown or produced within 30 miles. The meal was made by a 20-something farm intern in upstate New York, who’d love to hear good news next week. That’s when The Farm Bill, renewed every five years (most recently in 2008), might reach the legislature more than a year before it should.
By 10 a.m. on Monday, the team at Gramercy Tavern had already started clearing furniture and setting tables with red and orange flowers and cards for the 18th Annual Autumn Harvest Dinner, the annual multi-chef benefit dinner and silent auction…
Earlier this month 30,000 home cooks proved that a value meal didn’t have to require a drive-thru. Coming together with the values of true slow food—good, clean and fair for eaters and farmers—each made a meal for $5 or less a diner for a national “potluck” on September 17th. Out of this came hearty seasonal soups like corn chowder, meats (broken into parts, sliced for sandwiches and stewed into stock) and nights spent swapping preserving and season-stretching tips.