Do you have a 'Forever Meal' or a 'Food Ritual'? How about a 'Food Hero'? You don't really need one, but it's a fun feature of this (turns out to be) wonderful book by Jeff Krasno.
To be honest, when I picked it up Find Your True Fork, I expected it to be a good "cookbook" to help all us plant growers make use of the produce that comes along with loving plants. The author, Jeff Krasno, has a higher mission in life (see my key takeaways below) that is partially based around honoring food and growing our own. If not growing your own, then respecting the person for whom the food you eat is their passion and livelihood.
You, like I, probably know how that feels: when you put your time, love and life's energy into getting your fig to fruit or you have rhubarb that grew (yay) but now what do you do with all that fruit you're blessed with? I sometimes feel this way about persimmons, which I love to grow but then...cookies and sweat breads later, it was nice to discover a persimmon cocktail recipe in this book (p.78) and a flakey Fig Hand Pie recipe (p.185).
The book is plant-focused in terms of recipes but in no way restricted to a vegetarian menu. There is something for everyone: Grilled Lamb Chops with Anchovy-Walnut Chimichurri (p.28), Pork Tenderloin with Sautéed Apples (p.174), Red Snapper with Tomatillo Sauce (p.96), Ham Hocks southern style with Collards (p.176) to call out just a few.
One-page infographics provide just the right amount of background for unusual concepts like Benefits of Fermented Foods. The Evolution of the Human Diet. What's in Season When? What exactly IS Organic? How do you define a Raw diet? Understanding Paleo, Preserving, Closed-Loop Farming. What is Ayurveda? Because one of these single subjects might not be of enough interest to you for you to read much...it's nice that you have an easy-to-understand infographic or just a paragraph or two that fills in the mind's database.
Each of 10 chapters in the book is written by a chef, outstanding in their field, each with a different food specialty, many of whom you will recognize. It is super insightful to discover the essence of their love for food. For example, probably three chefs said their 'Forever Meal' includes Avocados (whose doesnt, right?!) Pantry Staples from the pros included good olive oil and salt from many, whilst butter, matcha, hemp & chia seeds and salted anchovies also show up.
Advice that shows up over and over in the book is to cook more, forgot the fads, just eat and cook with real ingredients when they are in season. This will be easy for gardeners. Eat what you grow, share with your neighbors and you will have a well-rounded seasonal menu at home. Realize that the way you eat as an individual is powerful and impacts the planet and humanity.
When you don't grow enough of your own goodies, follow the chefs and make the Wednesday Farmer's Market your food ritual!
Happy Reading (and cooking!). Siri Kay Jostad
You will take away SO much from every page in this book. I was surprised. Much of the takeaways this month are more like 'life lessons' worth knowing and sharing. To be honest...I can hardly wait to finish this review so I can start cooking from it this weekend!
Eat more plants and eat fewer things with labels
Know where your food comes from
Eat and cook seasonally
Listen to your body and eat what makes you feel good
Food can be flavorful, healthful and sustainable all at once
Treat food as a celebration rather than a chore
Eat the food you love. Love the food you eat
Over 70 mouth-watering recipes
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jeff Krasno is the cofounder of Wanderlust, a series of large-scale events combining yoga and wellness with the arts. Wanderlust has become a global wellness platform with 65 events in 16 countries, multiple retail centers and a media business. He is the author of Wanderlust and is a contributor to the Huffington Post and Fast Company.
Jeff believes that optimizing your relationship with food will enhance your life, and, in some cases, heal. He believes that food can be healthful, flavorful and sustainable. That it is in the sum of little conscious choices, like adding a basil plant to your windowsill, that we will create a healthier, more verdurous planet.
In 2016, he was selected by Oprah to be one of the SuperSoul100 as one of the nation's leading entrepreneurs.
He presently lives in Los Angeles, California with his wife, Schuyler Grant and their daughters Phoebe, Lolli and Micah.
Other work by Jeff Krasno
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