New Classes, New Commitments
I took a break. This summer, I didn't climb onto any airplanes, I didn't scrape any bones, and I didn't sharpen any knives. I've been fermenting, contemplating, working quietly, loving family, climbing mountains, watching nature. As summer draws out, I'm booking events again, and I have new passions I'm excited to share. In addition to charcuterie intensives from October-April (email me if you want to host in your corner of the world), I'm rolling out new classes for the next season, and I'm also committing to share something EVERY WEEK that cannot be bought or sold. Because in my world, the commodification of self, of ideas, of scenes, of experiences, is starting to grate at my soul.
Below is a list of what I'm wanting to share and discuss with you in the coming months. The ideas keep on coming, so this list will likely grow. I'm still excited about the technical skills of cooking and butchery, and I'm also deeply devoting myself to social and spiritual exploration of the beautiful PEOPLE that keep the food movement moving. If you want to collaborate on any of these, holler!
The Plight of the Modern Farmer: Farming is pursued as a freeing and meaningful lifestyle, one in which a person can have direct possession over all the activities of his or her labor. In the context of agriculture’s commodification, we look at the plight of the modern farmer- socially, economically, spiritually- and discuss entry points for free and meaningful living in our age of rapidly evolving food culture.
- The Mindful Foodie: Eating as activism includes action steps that are clear and tangible, as well as those that are fuzzy and overwhelming. Integrating the latest nutrition science with economic considerations and changing environmental conditions can become overwhelming. Join this discussion to explore mindfulness of self and circumstances as you navigate the frontlines of food activism and healthy living.
- Sausage Making for Feminists: The older I get, the more feminist I become. I'm trying to do it without bitterness for the world, so I figured making recipes and "bitching" together is better than just navigating this whole woman in a mans world by myself.
- LGBTQ Sausage Making: Making special space for this feels like the right thing right now. If there's interest.
- Kids Cooking and Sausage Making: Homeschool groups or in-school visits, plus stand-alone events imparting self-sufficiency, confidence, health awareness, and understanding of ratios and proportions. Ages 10-13 are ideal.
- Understanding Rumen Function as a Key to Management: In the grass-fed community, we constantly say, and hear others say, that grass-based diets are superior for ruminant animals to those including human-consumable grains. But do we really know why? This session breaks down the fascinating world of the rumen, how it works, how animals absorb nutrients, and the implications of this on animal and human nutrition, herd performance, and carcass quality.
- Koji in Every Kitchen: Koji is a beneficial mold, traditionally used in producing miso, sake, and shoyu (soy sauce), however its uses are far broader, including pickling, curing meat, and maybe even composting. In this session, learn about the positive power of koji, and how to grow your own culture.
-Everyday Cured Meats: You don’t have to be a charcuterie nerd making obscure salamis to benefit from a little cured meat. Interested in making your own deli ham to send in the kid’s lunchbox? Curing your own bacon so you can feel good about its ingredients? How about making the best barbeque or grilled chicken at the next block party? Attend this session to learn the most basic tenets of curing, brining, and smoking to bring your cooking and self-sufficiency to the next level.
The Art of Cooking Meat: No cut of meat is superior to another, provided you know how to cook them all. This session is designed to break down muscle science, to help farmers market their cuts, and consumers make the best use of the meat they buy. We will also discuss flavor science, seasoning, storage, and specific recipes.
- Addressing Food Fundamentalism with Integrity: In our search for new ground addressing environmental, economic, animal welfare, and social issues, real food advocates face challenges from absolutism as a growing concern. Join the discussion concerning a united effort to rise above food fundamentalism and remain connected and inspired in our work.
- In Praise of Meat Suspensions: Join the crusade to bring back meat suspensions such as pates, mousses, mortadella, and bologna. Celebrate the role of these preparations, and learn to incorporate them into your repertoire, as solutions for hurried mealtimes, showstopping apertifs for entertaining guests, or protein and mineral-rich, flavorful additions to your diet.