Mike Curtin from DC Central Kitchen - 05.21.15

May 21st, 2015

I will be interviewing Mike Curtin, the CEO of DC Central Kitchen, a non profit, social enterprise, that runs a Culinary Training Program, and distributes food to MikeCurtain_headshotlocal shelters. Mike has expanded DC Central Kitchen’s revenue generating, social enterprise catering, to include locally sourced, cooking from scratch meals, at ten DC schools and Healthy Corners, which delivers fruits and vegetables to corner stores in DC’s food deserts. They employ over 150 people, with 40% from their own Culinary Training Program. Please join me on Thursday, and learn more about DC Central Kitchen and the great work that Mike is doing there. 

Dandelion Nori Rolls

Makes 8 Rolls

Ingredients

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1 package of pre-toasted Nori (seaweed sheets)

8 cups of cooked organic, short grain brown rice

2 onions, cut in half, and sliced into thin slivers

5 carrots, grated

8 cups chopped dandelion greens, washed

1 Tbsp minced garlic

1 Tbsp of fresh grated ginger

2 Tbsp organic Tamari (Gluten Free)

2 Tbsp mirin (sweet rice wine)

1 Tbsp dark sesame oil

Tahini and toasted sesame seeds- optional

Tofu strips- optional

Pickled Ginger as garnish

Procedure

Sauté onion in olive oil, for 5 minutes. Add carrots, garlic and grated ginger. Sauté for 5 minutes longer. Add dandelion greens and sauté until wilted. Add tamari and aji mirin. Simmer till soft. Add dark sesame oil. Spread 1 cup of cooked rice out evenly over 3/4ths of the sheet of Nori. Be sure to spread the rice all the way out to the edges of the nori. Add ½ cup of the sautéed dandelion green mixture in the center of the rice, and spread across rice in a 1 ½ “ wide strip. Add a thin strip of tofu across the middle of the dandelion greens, if using. Sprinkle sesame seed on top, if desired. Begin to roll from front edge. Use water or tamari, or tahini to seal nori. Cut into eight even pieces.

To make Dip

Combine equal parts of water and tamari in small dipping bowl. Add a drop of Aji Mirin to sweeten. Serve with pickled ginger.

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Ellen Gustafson - Nourishing the Planet at the Green Space - 05.14.15

May 14th, 2015

Ellen Gustafson is a sustainable food system activist, author, innovator and social entrepreneur. Her first book, “We the Eaters: If We Change Dinner, We Can Change the World” was published by Rodale Press in May 2014. She is the Co-Founder of Food Tank: the Food Think Tank, which is run by President Danielle Nierenberg. She is also founder of a small sustainable home goods company called the Apron Project. Before the launch of Food Tank, Ellen founded the 30 Project, a campaign that has helped to change the conversation about the global food system by connecting hunger and obesity. She is also the creator of the ChangeDinner campaign and HealthClass2.0, which are helping individuals change the food system at dinner tables and in schools.

           Preserved Lemon Tapenade over Fish or Tofu

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, small dice
  • 1tbsp garlic, minced
  • 2 carrots, small dice
  • 1 Japanese eggplant, chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, sliced and halved
  • ½ tsp saffron
  • 2 tbsp boiling water
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 2 preserved lemons, diced
  • 1 tbsp parsley, chopped
  • ¼ c capers, drained
  • ½ c olives, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
For fish or tofu marinade:
  • 1 preserved lemon, diced
  • 1 tbsp chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 c flour (gluten-free flour can be substituted)
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 lb of fish (such as flounder or red snapper) or 1 block of tofu

Preparation

For marinade: puree first 4 ingredients for marinade in mini food processor. Spread over fish filets or sliced tofu (1/4 inch thick slices) and let sit for 30 minutes.

Heat the olive oil under medium heat and add the onion. Sauté the onions until translucent for 5 minutes, then add garlic and sauté 2 minutes.

Add the carrots and eggplant and sauté until tender, add more oil if necessary. Add the pepper and sauté another 3 minutes.

In a small bowl, pour 2 tbsp boiling water over saffron and let sit for 5 minutes.

Add the diced tomatoes, preserved lemon, capers, parsley and olives and sauté another 3 minutes.

Turn off heat and add salt and pepper to taste.

Using two pie plates, one for the beaten eggs and one for the flour, dip the fish or tofu into flour, then the egg, then flour again. Saute in olive oil until golden brown on both sides. Remove from heat, cover with tapenade, and serve immediately.

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Margaret Gray, Author of “Labor and the Locavore: The Making of a Comprehensive Food Ethic” - 05.07.15

May 7th, 2015

9780520276697-199x300This week, my guest on the Progressive Radio Network is Margaret Gray, an Associate Professor at Adelphi University in Political Science, and author of; Labor and the Locavore: The Making of a Comprehensive Food Ethic. Margaret, or Maggie, as her friends call her, took a long look at the local food movement, to see whether the unfair labor practices, that exploit immigrants and are rampant in factory farms and industrial agriculture operations, are also prevalent in small family farms in our local Hudson Valley food movement. I was very surprised and disappointed to find out that many of the same exploitative practices,  where undocumented workers from Mexico and Central America endure horrible living conditions, and live in fear of getting fired or deported if they so much as ask for a raise. And these local farms are the farms supplying our CSA’s, farmers markets and sustainable restaurants. Please join me on Thursday to learn more about how we can all help to make the Good Food Movement a movement that incorporates fair labor practices into the concept of a Sustainable Food Movement. By the way, fair labor practices is built into the tag line of the Slow Food Movement: Good Clean and Fair!  Just another reason why I love the Slow Food Movement!

Roasted Butternut Squash Coconut Cream Soup

2 Butternut Squash, cut in
half, seeds removed
1 Tbs minced garlic
3 Tbs minced ginger
2 t. salt
2 t. cardamon
3 t. cumin
2 t. curry powder
½ t. cinnamon
1 t. tumeric
Juice of 2 limes
1 Onion, chopped
4 carrots, chopped
2 potatoes, cut into chunks
1 can coconut milk
¼ cup maple syrup (optional)
12 cups water
Parsley or cilantro (optional)

Lay out the Butternut Squash, cut side down, on an oiled roasting pan. Bake at 375 for 1 hour, until squash is soft. Meanwhile, in large stock pot, sauté the onion, carrots ginger and garlic in a little olive oil. Add the spices and lightly toast for 2 minutes. When the butternut squash is ready, scrape out the pulp, leaving behind the skin, and add pulp to the stock pot. Add enough water to cover the squash by 3” inches, and bring to a boil. Add the potatoes and let simmer for 30 minutes. Remove from heat, and with an immersion stick, puree the soup until smooth. Return to stove, and add the coconut milk and lime juice. If the soup is too thick, add some more water. Add the maple syrup, if desired. Adjust spices and salt to taste. Garnish with parsley or cilantro.

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