Archive for October, 2009

Today’s Garden of Eden

Not Quite, but close! But that’s the title of my paper on The Edible Schoolyard, (yes, the famous garden and kitchen non-profit founded by Alice Waters of Chez Panisse) and I think it’s clever enough to not part with it, as of now.

Once a week, I come to Martin Luther King Jr Middle School and volunteer at the Edible Schoolyard. This experience has been the highlight of my semester, and I’ve never enjoyed more working with kids.

Because I know nothing about harvesting and planting, I chose to work in the Kitchen, which has been an incredible experience. The kitchen classroom is my ideal kitchen. They use top-notch kitchen gadgets, fresh ingredients fill the countertops, the brightly-painted walls are adorned with unique garlands of garlic and herbs, and hand-written recipes and books line the walls. Each one hour period, we prepare the ingredients, cook the food, set the table, eat together, wash the dishes, and have time to learn the importance of seasonal foods and organic cooking. (Although there’s always one kid who raises his hand and yells, “hells nah! organic makes me puke!” I hope he learns something here…) They often use fresh vegetables and fruit straight from the garden! I tried freshly pressed apple cider, honey, and ricotta cheese. I also ate their eggs from their hens—-really, it tastes wonderfully different. No wonder there’s so much hype about this place! I work with 8th graders, so they’ve been doing this for 3 years, which means they know how to do things a lot better than me. All I do is just make sure they don’t talk to much. Life is so good!

Yesterday, I came early so I took a stroll in the garden. I think it’s about an acre big. Anyways, welcome!

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Kiwi!

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Rainbow chard. We made autumn harvest soup with these. So delish! Come over and I’ll make some for you.

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Weird fungi that exploded. It looks like a dead animal carcass. Flies were all over that thing.

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A wood fire pizza oven that a volunteer donated a while back. They actually use it!

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A solar powered coy pond. In theory, it should work.

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Dinosaur kale. Scary looking, no?

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Tool shed in the back. These kids are so lucky!

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Real free range hens! Look at those plump feathers. I was too scared to stand too close…

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What composting should look like. Watch out chicken!

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They always have fresh cut flowers in a vase on the eating table. More often than not, there’s a huge bug crawling around the petals, and subsequently, there’s always a huge commotion about it.

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I never knew artichoke grew on the ground! I also never knew how many different spellings artichoke could have. The kids write “ardichok” “artychoc”…

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ancient corn fields. I forget the name of the beautiful red stalk plant…

Let me know if you ever want to come see this for yourself. Really, you can’t live in the bay area without having seen this.

 

 

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joe love

Nothing beats a wonderful weekend spent with my family! Here’s how the Joe’s roll.

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JK. Although my dad really wanted to ride one.

We stood in line for Mama’s and I got a lot of shots of Big Mama.

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Yea! You know your food is good when big boy is cookin it!

With our tummy’s full, we schaloomped over to the Noe Valley street fair. It was a perfect day for smelling flowers, getting free samples of organic foods, and stalking cute dogs!

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I think fall is my favorite season.

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Maggie Mudd’s vegan pumpkin ice cream. No one but me liked it. I never felt so good about saving baby cows! (It tasted a lot better than it looks)

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Hello cutie patootie fairy princess!! It’s a handmade costume. Doesn’t she look so happy?

Since this was the first time in a while that we were all together, we had to take touristy pictures.

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My mom was so scared.

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6 painted ladies! 3 happy ladies, 1 grumpy papa : )

This picture came out so cute; I had to put it up!

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My pretty sister and her old-man bf. jk, He’s tight.

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the sartorialist and i…

and she and him and her and he.

4.5 hours waiting for Scott Schuman, aka The Sartorialist. Denise and I arrived fashionably early to Paul Smith on Geary only to be confronted by this:

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Hello from Chinatown! We stood in front of a really grungy Chinese storefront for most of the time. It’s just really odd to see such a high end boutique next to ghetto not-so-fab-ness.

Paul Smith is such a gorgeous boutique. Everything did have too many zeros attached to the price, like the ridiculous (but stunning) gold-plated camera below. At least pictures come free.

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Does that say $3000? Hellllloo.

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Oh, if life was solely about (pretty) soles and (good-looking) souls…

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Yes dear, a sock for Christmas please.

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What I envision a wall in my home to look like.

We took a picture with Scott, which I will post soon. He’s a very particular guy; has a crisp and witty character…you can say that for just about anything, including his suit, hair, and even looks. He’s also very flattering…(I wonder if he really means it!) After tonight, I’ve decided that Berkeley/SF needs a makeover–just a slight one.

After tonight, I have a closer affinity to all my clothes. I’m going to start dressing up for school. So like my buddy Ryan (who had a girl come up to him and take his picture for her blog!..nope not me…) I too will flash my geeky smile and too cute oxford heels.

Sorry for the lack of pictures; I wish I had caught all the beautifully dressed people that showed up (including us!) but it was a frantic night.

[update]

here we are!

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I’m lacking…

In a good way. Because that means I want more! But not in a greedy way. I’ve been having trouble concentrating on the patterns of my seemingly drab life, but I think it’s my inner soul trying to break loose from what Emerson would call the “mere consistency of life.” I just want to open up The Known World, which I picked up from the corner of Telegraph and Dwight for a quarter from the nice gentleman, and watch magic flitter away.

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I’m going to go on a series of irrelevant tangents (is that repetitive?)…perfectly reflective of my mind right now…

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I tried the “New!” rosemary foccacia bread at Berkeley Bowl. Yea, definitely good SHEET…

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What went down in downtown at Pearl’s Burger.

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Bad photo, thrilling sounds. I think I would rather be blind than deaf. But then I wouldn’t be able to update my blog. Or see Daniel Nigro’s chest hair. Life is full of sacrifices…

via Rebecca Miller

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autumn beats

Rain, midterms, homesickness, spurts of melancholy; squash, pumpkins, figs, new tv shows…Epitome of a love/hate relationship.

I officially declare Wednesday tv night. Modern Family, Cougar Town (so trendy!), and Eastwick. No, I am not a Glee fan no matter how much you’ll assume I’ll like it; I already gave it a chance. But I am not embarrassed to profess my like for any of these shows. Lindsay Price is so gorgeous. When did I start watching tv for pretty elderly people?

Come join me next week! We’ll eat it with a bowl of ricotta pasta, as long as you don’t look at me while I eat.

Real Simple‘s really simple ricotta, herbs, lemon pasta recipe:

  • 1 1-pound box penne
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 cup fresh ricotta
  • 1/3 cup roughly chopped mixed fresh herbs (such as chervil, tarragon, and flat-leaf parsley)
  • zest of 1 lemon, grated
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  1. Cook the pasta according to the package directions. Reserving 1/3 cup of the water, drain the pasta, then return it to the pot.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the butter, ricotta, and pasta water until a rich, creamy sauce forms.
  3. Pour the sauce over the hot pasta. Add the herbs, zest, salt, and pepper and toss.

On a side note, I’m really craving a cupcake. But it has to look like this:

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via zalita

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dance dance dance

As tall as lions tomorrow night at the Fillmore!

I can’t wait to

feelmusic

via Erin Hanson

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yum and yum

My sister came up this weekend. You know what that means.

We started off at El Farolito in the Mission and got their super fatty quesadilla.

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(We got a burrito too).

Immediately after,

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Hooray for Humphry! I had to settle with the fudgsicle sorbet. I really wanted the secret breakfast (bourbon and cornflakes), but I thought I was going to get buzzed.

Later that night, Fenton’s with the senior class! Yay for blueish gray! Like my shirt? Elizabeth and James : )

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Brian and Ryan always give me pep talks when I’ve had a couple. Fine, one. The only time I’ll appreciate it.

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Oh god. I need to come back and write a limmerick for this one.

silky yolk oozing around,
I am eternally bound
to the magic of the butler
did I ever think it would occur
to me that I have found true love?
I am soaring high above.

Maybe I should start letting the picture speak for itself.

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Curried potato cheeseboard beautifully modeled. Thank you Denise, well done.

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And to finish it off, Kingdom Cakes.

I wonder if this is healthy for me. Though I call Berkeley (and SF) my new home, every time I go out, everything feels so surreal. The charm and spunk of these cities are so endless and unpredictable. Everyone’s so happy in their organic clothes and hemp shoes; I’ve never heard a child cry, I’ve never seen so many recycling/compost bins, and the dogs are all so healthy, fit, and cute. Where else in America is this possible? I’m sad I no longer have my car up here…maybe it’s time for me to buy a bike! It looks like the Bay Bridge is going to have an adjacent foot/bike bridge, but I’m just speculating.

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