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2015

Permaculture: Taking the Long View

Written by Bonnie North | November 16, 2014

Devin Smith

In 1974, Bill Mollison and David Holmgren published Permaculture One: A Perennial Agriculture for Human Settlements. The charismatic Mollison then threw himself into traveling and teaching Permaculture Design Certificate courses, known in the lingo as “The PDC,” while Holmgren and his partner, Su Dennett, dedicated decades of their lives to restoring the blackberry-covered wasteland on a one-hectare property in central Australia.

Frankly Speaking

How to make a local hot dog at home…or maybe not

Written by Claire Fitts Georges | August 24, 2015

hotdog links

Hot dogs are the epitome of mass-produced, questionably sourced food product. They are the emulsified bits and scraps of mechanically separated cartilage, tendons, and other meat undesirables that don’t belong anywhere else.

Forest to Flask

Caledonia Spirits seeks to age whiskey in barrels made of Vermont oak.

Written by Jen Rose Smith | May 26, 2015

Caledonia Spirits Rye Barrel

Do you know a cooper? It’s a query likely to produce confusion, as Caledonia Spirits’ founder Todd Hardie learned by putting the question to just about everyone. “For most of a year, each time I met someone, I’d say ‘Hello, do you know a cooper?’ And they would say, ‘What’s a cooper?’”

The Taste of Grass

How farmers are improving the flavor of grass-fed beef, with fat

Written by Helen Labun Jordan | February 13, 2015

Cattle grazing on grass

Fat tastes good. Whatever your other feelings about fat and health, good fats and bad fats, let’s agree that fat improves a food’s flavor. Our salivary glands respond to fat’s aromas during cooking (think frying bacon or browning butter) and its presence changes the way food feels on our tongue, adding a satisfyingly rich texture.

The State of the Bees

Written by Nancy Hayden | November 17, 2014

Nancy Hayden with honey frame

Winter is a great time to cozy up next to the wood stove with a mug of honey tea and read about bees. My own honeybees are snug in their beehives, but they’re probably not reading. They’ve formed a tight, buzzing cluster that keeps the colony remarkably warm even during the coldest winter nights.

Royally Local

The Chelsea Royal serves Vermont food worthy of a diner

Written by Alex Brown | August 25, 2015

Chelsea Royal Diner

The Chelsea Royal Diner’s 1939 dining car has been in its present location on Route 9 just outside Brattleboro since 1987, but today it’s home to a successful demonstration of the modern resurgence in serving locally grown food. Todd Darrah, enjoying his 25th year owning and operating the diner, has found a way to combine low diner prices with the high principles of the local food movement.

Fire Eaters

Kids in Dummerston learn how to cook food over a flame.

Written by Abigail Mnookin | May 26, 2015

Students from Oyase Community School with campfire

Although cooking over a fire generally brings fond memories of roasting marshmallows for s’mores, it also offers a tremendous opportunity to become more connected with the places we live and the food we eat.

Dorchester’s Daily Table

A Gleaning Oasis in the Urban Food Desert

Written by Glenn Scherer | February 13, 2015

Ismail Samad

Chef Ismail Samad first made his name in New England when he and business partners Alice James and Liz Ehrenberg opened the Gleanery Restaurant—a Putney eatery that serves first-rate fare made from farm-gleaned “seconds.”

Farming and Parenting

What happens when children enter the farming life?

Written by Abigail Healey | November 17, 2014

Spencer Blackwell of Elmer Farm in East Middlebury with his children Ida and Angus.

Farming isn’t a job—it’s a lifestyle. While most people have a job that is away from their home and family, farmers often don’t. Their farm is their home (ideally), and if they have kids, those kids are part of their work (often). One could argue that the busiest people in the world are farmers and parents. For those who are both, how do they manage?

Sheep Dairies

Why aren’t there more in Vermont?

Written by Katie Sullivan | August 25, 2015

David Major’s flock at Vermont Shepherd

Vermont is famous for cow dairies, but as the market for artisanal cheese has boomed, goat and sheep milk cheeses have entered the mix. Over the past 20 years, a number of farmers have launched goat dairies for farmstead cheese and for fluid milk sales. Some are former cow operations that switched business models when cow milk prices plummeted. Others began with dairy goats from the start.

Campfire Cooking

Using a Wood Fire to Prepare Locally Sourced Summer Dishes

Written by Sarah Galbraith | May 26, 2015

Chicken cooked over the campfire

Camping is one of the most sensory pleasures of summer. There are the natural sights, such as towering trees, wildlife, sunsets, and stars, and the sounds, such as those of birds that start their trilling morning songs and lakes that lap at shores in the distance.

Our Meat, Made Visible

The new Vermont Packinghouse allows visitors to observe how animals become food

| February 13, 2015

Arion Thiboumery

Ironically, given that it’s the only slaughterhouse in Vermont with public viewing windows, the new Vermont Packinghouse doesn’t have a single window on the outside, save on the front door of the main office.

Ode on a Glass Jar

Written by Taylor Mardis Katz | November 17, 2014

Canning jars

As a farmer, I’ve become a collector of vegetables. But as we all know, vegetables cannot last forever. That is, unless you put them in a jar with some salt, a sprinkling of peppercorns, and a few cloves of garlic. Pickling is an essential way for us to eat from our gardens while the plants sleep beneath snow. But for me, pickling’s greatest joy is this: It gives me an excuse to use my jars.

Market Trends

How are Vermont’s farmers’ markets doing?

Written by Caroline Abels | August 25, 2015

Bellows Falls Farmers' Market

Over the past 10 years farmers’ markets in Vermont have burst forth like a backyard garden in July. Currently there are 63 markets in the Vermont Farmers’ Market Association, and a dozen or so that aren’t members. But every now and then you hear people wonder whether farmers’ markets have peaked in popularity, or strayed from their original purpose by offering more crafts and prepared foods.

Breeds Apart

Why some Vermont farmers love the Cornish Cross—and others don’t.

Written by Katie Sullivan | May 27, 2015

Freedom Ranger chickens

Many people greet the arrival of spring by poring over seed catalogs and scanning for new varieties of vegetables, but I have a slightly different tradition. When March rolls around, I plan my broiler chickens for the year.

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A quarterly magazine devoted to covering local food, sustainable farming, and the many people building the Vermont food system.

Vermont's Local Banquet Magazine illuminates the connections between local food and Vermont communities. Our stories, interviews, and essays reveal how Vermont residents are building their local food systems, how farmers are faring in a time of great opportunity and challenge, and how Vermont’s agricultural landscape is changing as the localvore movement shapes what is grown and raised here.

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