Sugar Substitutes; The Methane Digester; The History of Tea
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Our resident omnivore, Jon Gold, takes curries to new heights with his Indian restaurant pick. Neuroscience historian Will Clower shares his insights on the safety of sugar substitutes. Albert Straus takes us to his family's creamery, where they're turning cow manure into electricity. Australian winemaker Chris Hatcher makes a case for screw tops on wine bottles. Author Beatrice Hohenegger sheds light on the surprisingly controversial history of tea. Linda Buettner improves the quality of life for those with dementia by bringing them into the kitchen, and Tony Nester teaches teaches us how to survive off-grid.
Market Report; Crop Losses ()
The recent stretch of cold weather has impacted Southern California farmers – affecting acres of crops that are accustomed to more temperate conditions. Laura Avery spoke to Troy Regier about his family's losses from the record freeze, explaining that an 80% crop loss is the same as a 100% loss, since it's too expensive to root through each piece of fruit to find the undamaged produce.
Troy Regier's challenges are a reminder of the hard work and risks taken by our local farmers. Losses that result from catastrophic situations, like weather conditions, can cause farmers to go bankrupt. After a loss, farmers often have to obtain a line of credit against their house or take out a personal loan just to make ends meet, adding to the pressure of a successful growing season the following year.
Support your local farmers market!
Music Break: Tito - Groove Collective
Jonathan Gold - Vegetarian Bliss ()
Our resident restaurant critic and food writer for the LA Weekly, Jonathan Gold, takes a food journey to the Indian state of Gujarat... in the unlikely locale of Artesia. His restaurant pick this week is Rajdhani, a vegetarian’s delight featuring the complex, rich cuisine of western India. Their specialty is the sumptuous, thali, a multiple-course platter, with never-ending refills of each item, including delicately fried flour puffs called puri, rich purees of yogurt, legumes and pulses, spicy stews, and curried vegetables.
18525 Pioneer Blvd.
Music Break: Action Power - Anthony Mawer
Sugar Substitutes ()
Dr. Will Clower is the author of The Fat Fallacy: The French Diet Secrets to Permanent Weight Loss. He is an award-winning neurophysiologist who spent two years as a research fellow at the Institute of Cognitive Sciences in Lyon, France. He is founder and president of Mediterranean Wellness, Inc., which administers The PATH Healthy Eating and Weight-Loss Curriculum adopted by corporate clients across the United States. He has been featured in print publications such as Marie Claire, Woman’s World, and Fitness. Dr. Clower lives in Pittsburgh.
Music Break: Mambo Parisienne - Henry Mancini
Cow Power ()
Agricultural sources of methane gas are responsible for approximately 3% of greenhouse gas emissions. Wouldn’t it be great if this readily available resource could be turned into energy? While it sounds like the wave of the future, it’s actually here now -- right in California’s own backyard.
At the Straus Family Creamery in Northern California, methane is being converted into electricity through their Methane Digester – a technological marvel that produces up to 600,000 kilowatt hours per year. The electricity generated by the Methane Digester runs 95% of the farm, all the way down to charging the Straus’ electric car every night.
Albert Straus -- the president and owner of Straus Family Creamery -- is the innovator behind the Methane Digester, which had humble beginnings as a tank cover for the manure pond back in 1980 (an additional environmental benefit because capturing methane gas prevents it from being released into the atmosphere). He shares with us the process of converting manure into electricity and how he’s made his electric meter run backwards.
Music Break: Gullible's Travles - Holly Golightly
Chris Hatcher - Australian Wines ()
Chris Hatcher is the Chief Winemaker for Wolf Blass Wines, located in Southern Australia's wine region known as the Barossa Valley. He is considered one of Australia's premium white wine makers and one of the country's most respected wine show judges, having made 39 trophy winning wines and 218 gold medalists. According to Wally's Wines (and KCRW’s very own Nic Harcourt -- who lived in Australia for many years), Wolf Blass is one of the premium wines out of Australia.
Chris is the pioneer and creator of an unconventional screw top for wine, which prevents wines from being “tainted” by their corks. He also reveals what makes the wine region of Australia unique and how they compare to our own California wines.
Music Break: Pink Panther - The Hollywood Studio Orchestra
The History of Tea ()
In her book, Liquid Jade, Beatrice Hohenegger covers 5,000 years of the politics and culture of tea – from it’s early medicinal and spiritual uses in the East, to the trade wars with the West and it’s eventual introduction to English society, where it was used to sober-up an increasingly drunken Great Britain.
Now considered the world’s most-consumed beverage, Beatrice discusses why tea has remained so popular throughout the centuries; the current political environment of the tea trade; and even answers the age-old question about what to pour first: milk or tea?
Beatrice Hohenegger is an author and guest curator of a traveling museum exhibition on the history and culture of tea, which is slated to open in 2009 at the Fowler Museum of Cultural History at UCLA. She is fluent in English, French, Italian, and German, and holds a M.A. from the department of history and philosophy at La Sapienza University of Rome. She lives with her family in Los Angeles.
Music Break: Momi Lei - The Polynesians
Cooking as Therapy ()
Linda Buettner is a gerontologist and recreational therapist, specializing in the care of people with dementia. She's the director of the Center for Positive Aging in Port Charlotte, Florida, where she has implemented a cooking class for the center’s clients.
Isolation is one of the key problems that people with dementia face -- their condition can prevent them from social, cognitive and physical activities, which often results in physical decline and depression. By bringing her students into the kitchen, Linda gives them a means of connecting to their past, of sharing their history with one another and improving their emotional well-being. Linda talks about the difficulties of working with the memory-challenged, why cooking is such an effective tool, and how the class is making a positive impact on her students.
Music Break: Piece of Mind - Baker Brothers
Wilderness Survival Skills ()
In the chaotic storm of stress that defines urban living, many long for a simpler, more self-sufficient way of life. For those who want to nurture their inner cave dweller, Tony Nester can teach them all the skills they need to survive -- sans espresso machines, microwaveable entrees and 500-thread count cotton sheets.
Tony’s company, Ancient Pathways, is a wilderness skills company headquartered in Flagstaff, Arizona -- Tony has more than 16 years of experience teaching wilderness survival and guiding outdoor treks, and is the head instructor of the Southwest Semester Program.
He has taught programs for the Sierra Club, National Park Service, USDA, the Ojibwa Indian Tribe, and served as a consultant for the Discovery Channel. He is adjunct faculty at Northern Arizona University where he teaches survival and primitive technology courses. Tony has a BA in anthropology and is nationally certified as a Wilderness First Responder through the Wilderness Medicine Institute of NOLS. He is also the author of two books on outdoor survival -- Practical Survival Tips, Tricks, & Skills and Desert Survival Tips, Tricks, & Skills -- and is also a well published writer in numerous magazines.
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GOOD FOOD THANKS ITS UNDERWRITERS:
Du Vin Wine & Spirits: In business for more than two decades at San Vicente in West Hollywood, Du Vin offers more than 10,000 bottles of hand-picked wine, with staff specialists in the wines of France, Italy, Latin America and California.
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