Tag Archives: Mollie Katzen

Mollie Katzen: Making vegetables the rock stars

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Mollie Katzen changed the way a generation cooked with the publication of Moosewood Cookbook in the 1970s. Hailed by the New York Times as “one of the best-selling cookbook authors of all time,” Katzen is widely credited with having brought vegetarian cuisine into the mainstream. An award-winning illustrator and designer, she has been inducted into the James Beard Hall of Fame and named by Health magazine as “one of five women who changed the way we eat.”

Berkeleyside caught up with Katzen, who lives in Kensington, to talk, among other things, about her Twitter habit and her new cookbook, The Heart of the Plate: Vegetarian Recipes for a New Generation, which exemplifies the way Katzen cooks today. (Don’t miss Katzen’s recipe for Vegetarian Tan Tan Noodles at the end of the interview.)

Katzen will be in conversation with author Elizabeth Fishel on Saturday Oct. 26 at Uncharted: The Berkeley Festival of Ideas. Visit BerkeleyIdeas.com for details and to buy your ticket.

[Win a copy of Katzen’s new book, The Heart of the Plate! Simply “Like” Uncharted Ideas on Facebook to be entered to win. Drawing happens Friday, Oct. 18.]

You’re a big tweeter. Why do you like Twitter?
Twitter is my unofficial focus group. It gives me a great sense of community with readers and other food writers. I don’t use it for small talk, but, rather, for outreach. When you’re writing all the time you can get very subjective and isolated. Sometimes I’ll tweet something to take the pulse of an idea. Something that may seem obvious to me turns out to be of great interest to followers. It lets me know when I need more objectivity. I also like use Twitter to promote the work of others who, I feel, deserve greater exposure. … Continue reading »

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Doctor’s orders: Eat your greens says Preston Maring

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Here’s a notion that hardly seems radical: longtime Berkeley resident Dr. Preston Maring thinks physicians should prescribe healthy eating along with dispensing drugs to their patients.

Maring, Associate Physician-in-Chief at the Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Oakland, believes doctors should also walk the walk about the preventive health benefits of sound nutrition.

He’s so committed to the good food cause he’s willing to show other medical professionals how to mince garlic and whip up vinaigrette from scratch for … Continue reading »

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Berkeley Bites: Kyle Cornforth

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Each Friday in this space food writer Sarah Henry asks a well-known, up-and-coming, or under-the-radar food aficionado about their favorite tastes in town, preferred food purveyors and other local culinary gems worth sharing.

Kyle Cornforth packed up her family last summer and headed to the outskirts of Chiang Mai to spend a year as the director of The Prem Organic Cooking Academy and Farm, which teaches traditional Thai cooking and farming techniques to kids from international schools around the globe, as well as adult travelers.

She wanted to share what she learned about local, sustainable, organic cooking working as the program coordinator for the Edible Schoolyard at Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School. (Kyle, 30, will return to that position this summer. She met her husband Jay Cohen, a teacher at the school, in the Edible garden. Cue a chorus of awws now.)

She has spent the past year documenting her cross-cultural experiences in often amusing entries that can be found on her blog Cornhens in Thailand. The family, including daughter Zorah, will return to their South Berkeley home in a few months. (Full disclosure: I met Kyle at Edible while lending a hand as a kitchen volunteer.)

1. Can you name some favorite family-friendly eateries in town?

For breakfast we regularly go to The Homemade Cafe. We have been taking Zorah there on the weekends since she was an infant. It isn’t so much that the space is set up for kids, but the staff there has always made us feel welcome and been especially warm to Zorah.

Right around the corner there is a wonderful place for dinner, Digs Bistro, that has a parents night out the first Monday of every month. They have supervised activities for kids two and over — art, dinner, ice cream and a movie — and you can sit in the next room and have a delicious meal in a romantic environment.

2. Do you have a local food hero?

Amy Murray of Venus Restaurant is doing good work with quiet passion. I worked for Amy at Venus for five years. A lot of what I know about food and cooking I learned from her. She has been deeply committed to local food for a long time. I also run into her at the farmers’ market all the time, and I think it is important to see chefs out selecting the produce and ingredients themselves.

I often crave her food; anyone who comes up with the veggie nest is a hero in my book! It’s on the breakfast/brunch menu: Two poached eggs atop a salad of arugula, frisee, wild mushrooms, goat cheese, tomato, and bacon. It’s served with tapenade toast but I always substitute the biscuit. It’s the perfect way to start a weekend day. … Continue reading »

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5 Berkeley restaurants make Top 100

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Only five of the Chronicle’s Top 100 restaurants in the Bay Area are in Berkeley, the birthplace of the locavore movement and the home of the doyenne of slow food in the United States, Alice Waters.

Of the five chosen ones — revealed in the paper’s annual league table yesterday, one is relatively new. The other four count as veterans in the fast-moving world of restaurants.

The five are: Chez Panisse — naturally, Corso Trattoria,  Continue reading »

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Berkeley Bites: Mollie Katzen

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Each Friday in this space food writer Sarah Henry will ask a well-known, up-and-coming, or under-the-radar food aficionado about their favorite tastes in town, preferred food purveyors and other local culinary gems worth sharing with visitors and residents.

Bestselling cookbook author Mollie Katzen kick-starts this new column.

Mollie Katzen is perhaps best known for her whimsically illustrated, hand-lettered vegetarian classics Moosewood Cookbook and The Enchanted Broccoli Forest.

The author of a trio of popular children’s cookbooks, … Continue reading »

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