Friday, March 26, 2010

Monterey Fish Market's Paul Johnson weighs in on Salmon politics

The Salmon fishery in California has been closed for two years now & no one has really heard about it. That is about to change on April 1st with a summit on salmon @ Fort Mason.

To find out more read this blog post by Paul Johnson, founder and president of one of the nation's most sustainable local fish markets, Monterey Fish Market.

(disclaimer, on the water front is my 9 to 5 blog, I'm so excited that we got this special blog post I had to share)

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Pushing the bounds = home cooked Indian food

My next food adventure = Indian food. I love it - the flavors, the textures, the naan, the endless vegetarian options. My friends of the delicious homebrew are telling me I can actually cook it. I'm not sure I believe them. But I am excited about shopping for new spices at the bulk section at Rainbow and actually using the coffee grinder that has been especially set aside for the grinding of things like these beautiful coriander seeds.

Erin and Larry's lessons learned from years of experimenting in the kitchen are as follows:
  • garlic & ginger paste form the foundation for all good sauces - grind garlic and ginger in a food processor with a tiny bit of water to make a paste
  • whole black peppercorns are profound
  • must have whole cumin and cardamom at the ready - don't be shy - and don't forget the tumeric
  • 5 spice recipe (toast with oil in a pan and add to any dish for a taste of India): black mustard seed, whole cumin, whole fenugreek, fennel and nigella seeds

I'll keep you posted on my attempts in the kitchen! Please send me your recipes and advice :)

SF embraces urban agriculture...

There's a good reason to applaud Newsom today -- the Mayor announced new plans to open up city land to urban agriculture! That's right, SF will soon be growing food at our libraries, our parks and even our police departments. Read more here.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Get Inspired: the Greenhorns

Lately, I've been delving into research on urban agriculture in a lot of ways and searching for inspiration in many others. In my searches, I revisited a project that has grown through it's many tendrils from a documentary featuring young agriculturalists to a young farmer/activist resource for all.

A beautiful film. An celebration of the movement. Get inspired by their blog the irresistible fleet of bicycles and their flickr page. lose yourself cause it's is the first day of Spring!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Spring time is seed time

Spring is on it's way! It's time to buy those seeds and get a new spring garden going. This is my favorite time--looking at all the different seed packets so full of potential. Going back to the seeds that were tried and true--trying something new. Finding your seeds is the beginning of an adventure, a setting of the stage.

I love to find heirloom varieties and local seed companies. Heirlooms will blow you away with their endless unique tastes and shapes and colors -- and they increase diversity in the garden.

Here are some resources to get you going...

Get your seeds close to home:
Local seeds are popping up everywhere! If you find a seed company nearby they will do better in your climate, not to mention helping your favorite local businesses. There's a new store on my street, Succulence, and they sell these beautiful baker creek heirloom seeds. One of Baker Creek's stoers is in an old bank. I love that. Sloat, Three Bees Nursery, Flowercraft, and even Cole Hardware are great resources for heirloom organic seeds in SF.
Starts - give your garden a jump start: A great way to get some momentum going in the garden is plant some starts. Farmers markets are great spots to look for healthy, unique veggie starts. In SF, try Alemany Farmers' Market and the Ferry Building Farmers' Market on Saturdays.

Other resource to find heirloom and organic seeds:
seed savers exchange
hudson valley seeds
native seed search
local seed swaps - look for your local ecology center or garden gathering spaces

Finally, learn how to save your own seeds for next year! There's a free class this Sunday at the new Hayes Valley Farm (see 'get out')

Dream big this spring--get inspired. If you've never done it before just try and plant one thing, one of your favorite veggies (you're officially warned, tomatoes are really hard in foggy climates like SF!). Because eating something you've grown from seed, something you planted and cared for and killed snails for, will begin to change the way you think about food, it will change the way you think about the afternoon sunlight, it will change the way you relate to your favorite farmer at your local market, it will change the way you look at your neighbors lawn. It will change everything. Here's to breaking ground!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

march in the garden...

Spent my Saturday with my hands in the dirt @ Garden for the Environment. Here's what March is looking like in the garden...

transplanting leeks

a bouquet for the weekly CSA box

a little spring cleaning