Next Slow Food Seattle Book Club Meeting: Oct 17 – “THE GOOD FOOD REVOLUTION” by Will Allen

Will AllenWe are still finalizing location details, but wanted to give you all an early heads-up to give you plenty of time to read this great next selection for our Slow Food Seattle Book Club.

Will Allen’s autobiography, THE GOOD FOOD REVOLUTION, was just published in paperback. He’s coming to Seattle to speak at the Seattle Public Library Microsoft Auditorium on 11/20 and then as the key speaker at the Snohomish County Focus on Farming conference on 11/21. So it seems like a perfect time to read his book!

We will meet from 6:30-8pm. The book club is always free to attend and is open to members and non-members. It’s a fun, casual, welcoming group of folks who love good food and good books. We’d love to see you there!

We’ll either be meeting in Capitol Hill or the Roosevelt area, and we’ll have more details on this ASAP.

You can RSVP on our Facebook page. If you’re not on Facebook, feel free to email Leslie Seaton with your RSVP or any questions.

Here’s the blurb on the book:

A pioneering urban farmer and MacArthur Genius Award-Winner points the way to building a new food system that can feed- and heal- communities.

The son of a sharecropper, Will Allen had no intention of ever becoming a farmer himself. But after years in professional basketball and as an executive for Kentucky Fried Chicken and Procter & Gamble, he cashed in his retirement fund for a two-acre plot just outside Milwaukee’s largest public housing project. The area was a food desert with only convenience stores and fast-food restaurants to serve the needs of locals.

Despite financial challenges and daunting odds, Allen built the country’s preeminent urban farm-a food and educational center that now produces enough produce and fish year-round to feed thousands. Employing young people from the neighboring housing project and community, Growing Power shows how local food systems can help troubled youths, dismantle racism, create jobs, bring urban and rural communities closer together, and improve public health. Today, Allen’s organization helps develop community food systems across the country.

An eco-classic in the making, The Good Food Revolution is the story of Will’s personal journey, the lives he has touched, and a grassroots movement that is changing the way our nation eats.

Yes on 522 – events and ways to get involved!

logo-trans-smallSlow Food Seattle has endorsed I-522, the campaign to label genetically modified foods.  Here is some additional background on the campaign from the “Yes on 522″ website:

A “yes” vote on 522 would give Washington shoppers more information about what’s in their food and control over their shopping decisions. Under this initiative, genetically engineered foods to be labeled could include chips, cold cereals, soft drinks, candy, corn and soy. Our food is already labeled with abundant nutritional information including sugar, sodium, whether flavors are natural or artificial and if salmon is wild or farm-raised. Additionally, American companies are already required to label genetically engineered food in 64 other countries. They should provide the same information to American shoppers.

If you would like to learn more about, volunteer for or generally support this campaign, here are a few ways to do so!

  1. Learn more at upcoming panel discussions, including one tomorrow, Saturday, September 7 at the Seattle Tilth Harvest Fair at 1pm. Slow Food Seattle’s own Philip Lee will moderate a panel with Delana Jones (I-522 Campaign Manager), Matt McDermott (Seattle Tilth Farm Works), Sander Kallshian (Seatte Seed Company), Maria Hines, (Maria Hines Restaurants), Ariana Taylor-Stanley (Tilth Producers of Washington), Dr. Lucy Jarosz (UW School of Geography). Find more panel discussions in the calendar below.
  2. Volunteer to help the phonebank.
  3. Hold a “Kitchen Conversation” with friends to discuss the issue and and raise funds.
  4. Attend a 522 fundraising event (see the calendar below and the Yes on 522 site for upcoming events).

SFS Books: May 10th – Poisoned: The True Story of the Deadly E. Coli Outbreak That Changed the Way Americans Eat

 

Poisoned: The True Story of the Deadly E. Coli Outbreak That Changed the Way Americans Eat Our May book club selection is Poisoned: The True Story of the Deadly E. Coli Outbreak That Changed the Way Americans Eat by Jeff Benedict

This will be an active, open conversation and all are welcome – please come even if you haven’t had a chance to finish the book! We’ll be meeting from 6-7:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 10th. Roy Street Coffee and Tea is located at 700 Broadway East. Limited free parking is available in the lot below.

Interested in food safety? Curious about how the common, yet sometimes deadly E. coli bacteria shows up not only in ground meat, but also strawberries, spinach and sprouts?

Join the Slow Food Seattle Book Club for a discussion of Jeff Benedict’s Poisoned: The True Story of the Deadly E. Coli Outbreak That Changed the Way Americans Eat. Benedict tells the story of the 1993 E. coli break-out in Jack in the Box hamburger meat through main characters nine-year old Brianne, who came close to dying and still lives with the impact of the episode, and Bainbridge Island-based lawyer, Bill Marler, who took on her case as a young lawyer.

“Over a period of a few weeks, more than 700 cases scattered across four Western states; four children died gruesomely, with bleeding intestines and kidney failure. But Mr. Benedict, a lawyer turned journalist, pays relatively little attention to the story’s medical complexities; his focus is the gruesome and complicated legal tangle that ensued. Nowadays we are all too familiar with the practices of giant processing plants, but back in those innocent times it was all new and appalling — the poorly regulated slaughterhouses, the batching of meat for grinding, the wide distribution of product, which maximized the spread of any contaminant.” — Abigail Zuger, M.D., New York Times, June 27, 2011

Jeff Benedict and Bill Marler

Author, Jeff Benedict (left) and attorney, Bill Marler (right). Photo: WSU Photo Services

Poisoned is as relevant today as it is to the 1993 story it tells. Just months after the book’s 2011 publication, another E. coli outbreak, this time in Germany, was traced back to salad vegetables.

“Although much more is known about food safety now than in 1993, the book speaks to our times. Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced that six more strains of E. coli will be banned from ground beef. That move follows pressure from Marler and represents a step forward in the fight for safe food, which is what “Poisoned” is all about.” — Lynne Terry, The Oregonian, September 24, 2011

Please join us! If you haven’t had a chance to read the book, find an excerpt here: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/28/health/28excerpt.html?_r=1&ref=views#

RSVP to books@slowfoodseattle.org and/or on the Facebook event page

About Jeff Benedict
Jeff Benedict is a contributor for Sports Illustrated and a writer for SI.com.  In 2011 he launched Inspire Books, his own book publishing imprint.  He published Poisoned: The True Story of the Deadly E. coli Outbreak that Changed the way Americans Eat under the new imprint.  Poisoned is Benedict’s tenth book and critics consider it his best.  The New York Times called it “the full literary experience of a medico-legal thriller in a work of nonfiction.”

Benedict was born in 1966 in New London, Connecticut. He has a Bachelor’s in History from Eastern Connecticut State University, a Master’s in Political Science from Northeastern University, and a J.D. from the New England School of Law. He previously practiced law in Connecticut, where he has spent most of his life. Today he lives in Virginia where he teaches Writing and Mass Media at Southern Virginia University and lives on a Civil War-era farm with his wife and best friend Lydia Benedict and their four children. http://www.jeffbenedict.com

The Makah Ozette Potato Presidium – Spring 2012

Photo by Yunhee Kim for Sunset Magazine

Makah Ozette potatoes with bacon cream. (Photo by Yunhee Kim for Sunset Magazine)

In the 1980’s an unknown fingerling potato was recognized to be a staple in the diet of Pacific Coast Native Americans of the Makah Nation. The Makah occupy the region around Neah Bay, Washington, that is the most northwesterly point in the United States. Tribal lore reported that this potato had been used by these people for about 200 years. The Makah had named this potato the Ozette after one of their five villages located around Neah Bay.  More about the Ozette and how it became part of the Ark of Taste can be found here. The presidium is focused on increasing seed production to bring more seed to market. Here is where those efforts stand currently:

  • After flooding annihilated the seed crop of 2010, our partner Pure Potato had to start again with the three year process of producing an abundant crop of certified seed potato. A project they had just completed. We are grateful they are willing to do it again.
  • The Certified Generation program starts with PreNuclear minitubers. These are first grown in “test tube” then planted in the green house.  The resulting crop of mini tubers is planted the next year for reproduction in the field and then classified as Nuclear.  The following years they are classified as Generation 1, 2, etc. as long as they remain within the disease parameters specified by the Department of Agriculture.
  • This Spring Pure Potato will plant 32 pounds of PreNuclear Makah Ozette minitubers in the field. This should yield approximately 30 one hundred pound sacks of Nuclear seed potato. In the spring of 2013 they will plant 16 sacks per acre that will yield 200 sacks per acre.
Makah Ozette Potato

Makah Ozette Potato

The question for Pure Potato is; how much to plant and how much to sell in 2013? We need potential growers to tell us of their intentions and to get on the list for notification of availability by emailing marlys@purepotato.com.

Next year, 2013, depending on the yield, there may be a limited supply of Nuclear Generation Makah Ozette seed potatoes for sale at $2.00 per pound. The plan is to keep reproducing this variety and increase the volume to meet the needs of all those interested in growing it.

This spring there is some seed available from Potato Garden (800.314.1955, cdrockey@potatogarden.com).

Gerry Warren
Presidium Coordinator
cgw@speakeasy.net, 206.818.5366

Resources:

For the history and back story of this potato go to the Makah Ozette Presidia page at Slow Food USA or here for more.

Makah Ozette Potato brochure [PDF]

Pure Potato
marlys@purepotato.com
360.354.6555
9020 Jackman Rd
Lynden, WA 98264

Potato Garden
cdrockey@potatogarden.com
800.314.1955
12101 2135 Rd
Austin, CO 81410

My fish has issues; it’s complicated – Sustainable Seafood in a Multimedia World

By Amy Grondin

My Fish has Issues; it's complicated - Sustainable Seafood in a Multimedia WorldJoin Slow Food Seattle for My fish has issues; it’s complicated – Sustainable Seafood in a Multimedia World, a conversation with Chefs Barton Seaver and Becky Selengut at the Broadway Performance Hall on Monday October 17th from 6:30pm to 8pm. A cookbook signing and reception featuring Snoqualmie Vineyards, The Pike Brewing Company, and an oyster bar from Taylor Shellfish will follow from 8pm to 8:45pm. Tickets available now through Brown Paper Tickets, $12/pp.

It’s time to cut through the fog of confusion that surrounds choosing and eating seafood. Sustainable seafood can be enjoyed in such a way that our personal health and the health of the oceans are of equal consideration. There are lots of sustainable seafood options to be had but how do we identify them?

Becky Selengut and Barton Seaver

Becky Selengut and Barton Seaver

East coast meets West coast for this fun and informative sustainable seafood presentation with Becky Selengut, our own local fish whisperer, and Barton Seaver, who’s visiting from D.C. While cooking is a hands on activity that engages all your senses, these two chefs have also engaged their minds and ethics in the process without finger pointing at those of us who are still learning about sustainable seafood. We can benefit from their research and hours in the kitchen by reading the sustainable seafood cookbooks each chef released in Spring of 2011

The evening’s conversation will appeal to folks who receive their information in many different ways, from slow as the printed word to speedy as devices can deliver. As part of the presentation our chefs, led by edibleSEATTLE editor Jill Lightner, will talk about how technology allows them to engage with eaters who may be new to seafood and not necessarily cookbook readers who specifically sought out a sustainable seafood book. Love your smartphone? Smart and sassy blog and Facebook posts, Tweets, websites and YouTube videos by Becky and Barton are just a click away.

Or perhaps you would rather meander printed pages that are glossy with images of seafood briny and sweet from the ocean? A person can pick up either chefs’ cookbook and get the full story – recipes with a dash of science sprinkled in as seasoning. Pick up your copy of For Cod & Country, Barton’s cookbook or Good Fish, Becky’s cookbook after the presentation.

Good Fish   For Cod & Country

What might you learn from our chefs? Both Becky and Barton encourage us to eat a variety of fish besides the perennial favorites of shrimp, salmon and tuna.

Eating a variety of seafood protects the health of humans and fish populations. Creating a marketplace demand for many types of fish eases the pressure on the whole ocean food web by spreading harvest efforts over many species and not over fishing a one popular fish.

An example? Small silver fish – once popular, then over fished due to market demand but on the rise again – just might make it back to everyone’s dinner plate as Barton and Becky’s followers learn from reading a computer screen or a cookbook page about recipes that balance the fishes intense flavor so the rich, nutritional qualities of these environmentally friendly fish are enjoyed.

And in or out of a tin, we need to get over our national suspicion of small silver fish; they are delicious, not scary! Join us on Monday October 17th and we’ll talk about it.

Speakers:

Thanks to our event sponsor, Seafood Producers Cooperative for their generous support and also to our presenting partners: Readers to EatersSnoqualmie Vineyards, Pike Brewing Company, Taylor Shellfish, and edibleSeattle.

Seafood Producers Cooperative   Readers to EatersEdible Seattle

Snoqualmie Winery    Pike Place Brewery  Taylor Shellfish