Food.Farmer.Earth Newsletter: Grains and Crackers

The Old Grist Mill Today

It’s a national landmark, and the only working hydro-powered grist mill in Washington State. Built in 1876, The Cedar Creek Grist Mill, located in southwestern Washington, just outside the town of Woodland is situated above the banks of the Cedar Creek. The mill offers visitors a unique view into a by-gone era of community grist mills that once formed a foundation for local farm communities throughout the country.

How to Homemade Crackers and Spread

Cookbook author and cooking instructor Ivy Manning demonstrates how easy it is to make tasty crackers, and spread from fresh, seasonal ingredients. “DIY crackers are a great way to save-the average box of ‘gourmet’ crackers costs $6, a batch of homemade crackers or crisps costs pennies,” she said. For those looking for more cracker and dip recipe ideas, Ivy Manning’s latest book, Crackers & Dips: 60 Handmade Snacks, is due out Spring, 2013.

How Modern Flour Made Local Grist Mills Disappear

Tom Henrich, volunteer miller at the historic Cedar Creek Grist Mill museum, a working hydro-powered mill near Woodland, Washington talks about what led to the demise of these mills around the turn of the early 20th century.

Coming Next: Wine

  • Tuesday
    It’s late Autumn, and Kevin Chambers of Resonance Vineyard in Carleton, Oregon is harvesting the last of his 2012 wine grapes, the Gewürztraminers, along with his oldest vines of Pinot Noir grapes that he produces on his farm. The warm sunny weather, still lingering over from the summer, was expected to rapidly change. A storm was predicted for the next day, and so his crew was determined to finish the harvest today, or risk losing the grapes that remained. We talk with this veteran grower about his grapes, and what he tries to achieve with them.
  • Wednesday
    Kevin Chambers just wants to keep growing the best grapes he can. And as he shares some of his insights as a grower that spans over two decades, we learn how his farming practices, and environmental philosophy have evolved over time. A deeply thoughtful, and knowledgeable grower, some of his ideas he tells us are not so enthusiastically shared by growers on either the organic or the conventional side.
  • Thursday
    Proprietor Bruce Bauer from Vino, a Portland, Oregon wine shop, shares his recommendations on some of his favorite moderate-to-low cost wines from the Northwest and beyond that would make excellent choices for the holiday season.

The Weekly Roundup

  • Lessons from the front line: Building a local grain economy (Civil Eats)
  • How to make croissants (Vincent Talleu)
    Youtube Video shows how they do it in a bakery.
  • Coffee is not dead, but it is losing its wild side (Guardian Science)
    The loss of Ethiopia’s wild arabica beans will not spell the end of lattes, but exceptional flavours may disappear forever.
  • The loss of Norma, The Best Cow Ever (Dairy Carrie)
    A dairy farmer who is not usually sentimental about animals talks about the death of her favorite cow.
  • Five unfinished food and ag issues that Obama needs to address in his second term (Mother Jones)
  • Amazing close-ups of seeds (Smithsonian)
    Gorgeous photos of seeds from the Millennium Seed Bank at Kew Gardens.
  • Wild turkeys gobble their way to a comeback (NPR)
    How the population has gone from 30,000 to 7 million in a hundred years.
  • Rooftop garden with a skyline view (City Farmer)
  • Boosting the economy in rural Nebraska (National Sustainable Ag Coalition)
    How a small program that’s included in the Farm Bill is helping a Nebraska family expand their business of selling sustainable produce, grains and soups.
  • No lawn, just food (Organic Gardening)
    Why grow a crop (grass) you don’t need?
  • The struggles of an elderly urban farmer in Detroit (Deadline Detroit)
    Granddaughter writes about her grandmother’s garden, which has fed the neighborhood for decades, even as other infrastructure has crumbled around them.
  • Firsthand report: What we learned going back to the land (Mother Earth News)
  • The Bean and Grain Project (Beans and Grains)
    YouTube video: A group of Northwest farmers working together to strengthen local food systems.
  • Prop 37 defeat reveals a food movement that is still half-baked (Earth Island Institute)

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