Friday, March 29, 2013

Good "Food" Friday & Food Pioneers

While today marks one of the Christian world’s highest holy days, Good Friday, today is also somewhat curiously marked by two important food conferences: Just Food “Eat * Work * Grow the Movement” and the “Healing Nature Forum: Planting the Seeds of Health and Sustainability” from The Horticultural Society of New York.
No Food
Confused about what not to eat?
According to the Catholic Bishops guidelines for public penance:
Adults between the ages of 18 and 59 are obliged to fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. In addition those 14 years old and older must abstain from meat on Ash Wednesday, Good Friday and all the Fridays of Lent.

Fasting as explained by the U.S. bishops means partaking of only one full meal. Some food (not equaling another full meal) is permitted at breakfast and around midday or in the evening—depending on when a person chooses to eat the main or full meal.

Abstinence forbids the use of meat, but not of eggs, milk products or condiments made of animal fat.

Sounds, just healthy!

Just Foods  

Speaking of reasonable and just, today kicks off the two day Just Food Conference’s Eat * Work * Grow the Movement.
Just Food convenes over 2,000 local food lovers and advocates, CSA members, community gardeners, urban and rural farmers, food professionals and entrepreneurs to participate in two days of hands-on workshops, discussions, skills-building sessions, and good food.
Just Food Conference 2013: Eat • Work • Grow the Movement will be held at the Food and Finance High School in Hell’s Kitchen and will provide attendees with opportunities to learn about national farm and food issues, CSA trends, cooking and food preservation techniques, along with ways to mobilize communities to increase access to farm-fresh, locally grown food.
This year’s conference will include:
            *  Over 100 workshops on wide-ranging topics including food education, food policy, community organizing, and entrepreneurship
           *  The Food Talks, a series of presentations by food movement leaders that will entertain, educate and empower attendees. Tamar Adler, Jane Hodge, Zaid Kurdieh, Bob Lewis, and Karen Washington are confirmed to speak. (Friday)
Just Food Conference Highlights
* The Keynote address is by celebrated activist and filmmaker Byron Hurt. Best known for his acclaimed film Hip Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes, Hurt’s latest work is Soul Food Junkies, named 2012 Best Documentary by the American Black Film Festival. (Saturday)

* Policy Matters: Food, Farms and Your Government panel, in which policymakers and practitioners share their successes and challenges. Confirmed speakers are Sabrina Baronberg, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Bob Lewis, NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets, Edie Stone, GreenThumb, and Alissa Weiss, Senior Policy  
I love and respect KarenWashington - a true force of nature
* Analyst for City Council Speaker Christine Quinn’s Office/FoodWorks. (Friday)
* Breaking Ground: Advice From Beginning Farmers panel, in which four farmers will share how they got started and lessons learned along the way. Farmers Rafael Aponte, Cara Fraver, Gudelio Garcia, and Ben Shute are confirmed to speak. (Saturday)
* The Good Food Jobs Get Together, a unique networking and skill-building event co- sponsored by Just Food and Good Food Jobs. (Friday)
* EXPO featuring exemplary food artisans, organizations, and sustainable businesses (Saturday)
When: Friday, March 29 (8:00am – 7:30pm), and Saturday, March 30 (8am – 6:30pm) Where: Food & Finance High School, 525 West 50th Street, New York, NY 10019 (between 10th and 11th Avenues)
Cost: Tickets are $45 per day. Tickets for the Good Food Jobs Get Together are sold separately. For conference attendees, the ticket price is $5 each and for non-conference attendees, the ticket price is $20 each.
Registration and Ticket Info: General conference info: Jessica Gaffney at 212-645-9880 x232 or;
Sponsored by: Great Performances, Whole Foods Market, Edible Brooklyn and Edible Manhattan, Good Food Jobs, Heritage Radio Network.
About Just Food
Just Food is a non-profit organization that connects communities and local farms with the resources and support they need to make fresh, locally grown food accessible to all New Yorkers. Just Food provides regional farmers and food producers, CSA organizers and everyday eaters with the resources and support they need to establish and experience healthy food systems—in every neighborhood.
About Good Food Jobs
Good Food Jobs is a gastro-job search tool, designed to link people looking for meaningful food work with the businesses that need their energy, enthusiasm, and intellect. Good Food Jobs posts opportunities with farmers and food artisans, policy makers and purveyors, retailers and restaurateurs, economists, ecologists, and more. On their blog, the gastrognomes, they profile the most interesting and unlikely food professionals that they find, and publish their stories to inspire you.
Good Food Jobs was created by friends, partners and ice cream lovers, Taylor Cocalis and Dorothy Neagle.
For more information about Good Food Jobs, visit

Healing Nature Forum: Planting the Seeds of Health and Sustainability
9:00 – 9:45

Meet & Greet Breakfast
10:00 – 11:00

Introductions & Keynote Speaker

George Pisegna, Director of Horticulture and Public Programs, The Horticultural Society of New York
Gwenn Fried, Manager Horticultural Therapy Services, NYULMC, Rusk Rehab

Keynote Speaker: Keith G. Tidball, Ph.D., Senior Extension Associate, Department of Natural Resources, Cornell University.

11:00 – 12:30

Panel Discussion: Starting Horticultural Programs
in Human Service Organizations

Kate George, Horticultural Therapist, NYULMC at Lenox Hill
Lori Bloomberg, Horticultural Therapy Intern NYULMC at Holy Cross
Maureen Regan, IG Garden and Food Pantry Coordinator, Queens Botanical Garden, Horticultural Therapist and Food Advocate, Green Earth Urban Gardens Inc.

12:30 – 1:00

1:15 - 2:45

Panel Discussion: Funding Horticultural Programs
in Human Services Organizations

Laura Hansen, Director of City Life Program, J.M. Kaplan Fund

Carole Gordon, LCSW Director of Housing Development, The Bridge
Sara Hobel, Executive Director, The Horticultural Society of New York
Matt Wichrowski, Senior Horticultural Therapist, NYULMC

2:45 – 3:00

Closing Remarks
According to The Horticultural Society of New York (HSNY), “The connection to nature is essential to human health and well-being. Interacting with nature promotes physical, psychological, and community benefits. This year’s forum will focus on information that integrates programming, policy-making and fundraising with non-profits, social services, healthcare industry, and community groups. Therapeutic horticulture can improve the body, mind and spirit through passive or active involvement. Join us as we discuss the importance of horticulture as therapy.”

The HSNY Healing Nature Forum takes place at:
Farkus Auditorium at NYU Langone Medical Center
550 1st Avenue
New York, NY

Admission: $25
Online registration has closed, but you can register in person the day of the Healing Nature Forum.
For more information email,  212-757-0915

Take a Spring Break and attend one or more of the weekend’s food forums.  There is a wealth of talent on display.

It is indeed a Good Friday.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

No Two ways about it: Goodreads & The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook Reprise Successful Promotion

Today is the First Day of Spring! Yesterday was National Agriculture Day – so how perfect a moment to announce a second, follow-up Goodreads Giveaway promotion for The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook?!

At its heart, The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook celebrates the growers and gardeners and artisanal food makers who most inspire the Island’s Homegrown chefs.

In the course of interviewing the culinary artists and writing the manuscript, I asked every chef to share who inspires them most. 

In the book, one can read of the chefs’ inspirational picks and the profiles of the Island’s native, homegrown edible pedigree – from honey and oyster and tomato farmers to duck, wine, and mushroom growers to dairy men and cheese makers. 

It is an enduring, edible food exploration.
And a celebration of the limitless food culture of Long Island.

I’m thrilled that The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown publisher, Quayside Voyageur Press is reprising a most successful Goodreads Giveaway. 

The first, recent Goodreads Giveaway promotion was an overwhelming success, according to the publisher; prompting a follow up outreach to foodies and culinary book enthusiasts.

They say love is better the second time around…

Like two peas in a pod, the prize is the gift certificate to the North Fork Table and Inn restaurant, tucked into a copy of the Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook.

The theme of two resonates throughout the promotion: the North Fork Table and Inn is owned and managed by two couples:
James Beard winners chefs Claudia Fleming and husband, Gerry. 
Chef Fleming is also the best-selling author of her cookbook, “The Last Course, The Desserts of Gramercy Tavern.”

In addition, the managing couple is Mike Mraz and his wife, Mary.

Don’t wait a second longer! 
Log into The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook and North Fork Table & Inn Gift Certificate.

The Giveaway runs for one month – through April 20.

Good luck!

To order The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook:
at B&N, Amazon & local Independent Book Stores: