Top | Newsletter 2013

Culinate Newsletter March 13

(mailing, James Berry)

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 h1. Dear readers,

 Many of the interviews on Culinate in the last few years have been conducted by a writer named Ellen Kanner. Back in 2010, Ellen wrote one of the more friendly queries we've ever received (without, I might add, using a single exclamation point). Happily, the buoyancy I saw in that first note has characterized all of my long-distance exchanges with her. Ellen lives in Miami, and as you probably know, we're in Portland, Oregon; unfortunately, our paths have yet to cross.

 But after a few years of back and forth, and after reading much of Ellen's generous, gentle, and radically soulful new book, Feeding the Hungry Ghost, I feel as if I know her just a little bit. If I were a betting gal, I'd say the optimism and, yes, love she sends out to the world are the real thing, folks. Her book is full of sentences like this: "The simplest meal is in truth a deliciously collaborative effort, a mystery both divine and earthly." What's not inspiring about that?

 That's the thing about Ellen's book: It's a 200-page reminder that food "opens our hearts. It gives us faith. It gives us energy to go forward." A Buddhist (no surprise there), Ellen adds a prayer: "May we accept this food for the realization of the way of love and understanding."

 Finally, there's the element of gratitude: "I have faith enough to be grateful for now, to know, as Wordsworth did, 'That in this moment there is life and food / For future years. And so I dare to hope.'"

 I am feeling my own measure of gratitude today … to Ellen indeed, but also the rest of you food-focused readers and writers out there. Thanks for the "deliciously collaborative effort."

 Kim Carlson
 Editorial Director

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story1id: 417936
story1text: "In France, Meredith Escudier and her husband enjoy cooking all-black food for dinner — but it takes some know-how."
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story2text: "Megan Scott argues that cooking and eating together as a household is valuable on many levels."

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recipe1text: "Darina Allen's version of the classic will appeal to St. Patrick's Day enthusiasts — and others who just love beef."
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recipe2text: "This simple, soft classic is good for everyday — but it dresses up well for special occasions, too." 

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