Cascadian Farm Organic Goodness



What is your best organic tip?

Don't fear bugs! Soil needs critters to stay rich and healthy. Welcome worms and other critters into your yard (they're still not welcome in our home)!

What is your favorite book on organics?

Michael Pollan's "In Defense of food" makes a great case for buying organic whenever possible, as does Barbara Kingsolver's "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle." Next on my reading list is "It's a Long Road to a Tomato: Tales of an Organic Farmer Who Quit the Big City for the (Not So) Simple Life," by Keith Stewart.

What is your favorite CD?

Can I pick a few? Lou Reed's "New York," Bob Dylan's, "Blood on the Tracks," the Beatles "Revolver," and Dexter Gordon's "Go." These days I'm listening to lots of Lyle Lovett and Wilco.

Who is your hero or idol?

These days, it's Will Allen, the man who started Growing Power. Allen and his organization acknowledge that the issue of food is one of class and social justice, and he spends his days teaching urban kids to connect with good food by farming in the middle of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Completely amazing.

If you had to decide, what would you be: animal, plant, or mineral?

Animal, for sure. I need to roam!

Here’s something I absolutely love to do: go to a restaurant, read the menu, and ask the server what’s fresh, local, and organic. Sure, it surprises some servers. Sometimes they explain that - while they don’t know - they’re sure that the ingredients are the best, most sustainable ones around. Some servers get flustered and say things like, “I’ll have to ask the chef.” The last time I ate out, the server asked, “do I have to bother the chef?” The answer, my friends, is always “yes.”

I’ve seen my share of reality TV, and I know that chefs can be scary people. That’s okay, don’t back down. A chef’s responsibility is to know not only what he or she is serving, but also where it comes from. And this will only happen if more diners start asking questions....

These days, it seems that everyone's got a bone to pick with corn. Whether it be discussions about ethanol and the amount of energy used to produce it, the fact that so much of the corn we grow in the Midwest is inedible for humans (thanks to the movie "King Corn" helping to bring that point home in a big way), the fact that it's fed to animals who should be eating grass, or the fact that corn is transformed into corn syrup and guzzled down by the 6-pack, it can be hard for us to remember how incredibly delicious sweet corn really is. We're in the midst of corn growing season right now, and I'm pretty sure I'm eating the tastiest stuff ever - no butter required. We're grilling it by the bushel these days, and consuming it in as many ways as we can. Jalapeno corn bread? Check! Polenta? Check! Corn ice cream with honey? Check!