The Occidental Arts and Ecology Center (formerly the Farallones Institute, and then the Center for Seven Generations) has been pioneering the American organic agriculture movement since the early 1970s. Set on eighty acres in California’s Sonoma County, it includes one of the first certified organic farms in the state and first agricultural easements in the country. When they are not farming or making art, OAEC members are teaching kids and adults about environmental issues or are engaged in eco-activism—the preservation of heritage seeds, for example, or advocacy against genetically modified crops.
These guys also know how to feast! The vegetarian recipes naturally showcase the enormous variety of vegetables, herbs, grains, and fruit which are grown in their gardens, including many unfamiliar plants like yacons, mangels, lovage, mitsuba, and a slew of wild edibles. There’s a recipe list preceding each of the four seasonal chapters and each has ingredients sized both for families and a crowd of thirty to forty persons.
Studded with gorgeous still-life food photos worthy of a Dutch Master, as well as many shots of OAEC members out in the gardens, this is a cookbook as delicious to peruse as it is to use.
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