FROM THIS EPISODE
We kick off this week’s watery show with the tale of The Codfather. Reporter Ben Goldfarb covered the rise and fall of Carlos Rafael for the Food & Environment Reporting Network (FERN) and Mother Jones magazine. His piece is a fascinating look at how a Portuguese fisherman amassed a flotilla of 40 boats, while managing to skirt commercial fishing regulations for years. Learn how his arrest upended New England’s fishing industry.
“Trust the Gorton’s fisherman,” or so the slogan goes. But truth be told, if you were to eat a McDonald’s Filet-O-Fish sandwich in Alaska, the fish inside the breading will have crossed the continental United States twice on its journey to Gloucester, Massachusetts, to be sliced and batter-coated in breadcrumbs before returning west to the Golden Arches. Journalist Lee van der Voo takes a deep dive into the commercial fishing industry in her new book, “The Fish Market.” In it, she exposes the monopolies, privatization and exclusionary practices that are just as rampant on the seas as they are in America’s agricultural industry.
Lee van der Voo
This week at the Santa Monica Farmers Market, Ricardo Zarate, the chef-owner of Rosaliné in West Hollywood, is shopping for ají amarillo, huacatay and Japanese Momotaro tomatoes. He uses them in a branzino dish called pescado parrillero, which he learned to cook from an ex-girlfriend’s mom. Then, farmer Cuco Arambula explains to Laura Avery how he grows Momotaro tomatoes at Beylik Family Farms in Fillmore, California.
When it comes to oysters, Rowan Jacobsen does not mince words: “A good oyster smells like the sea breeze skipping over the shore. A bad oyster smells like a murder victim.” That pearl of wisdom is one of many you’ll find in Jacobsen’s impressive new compendium about the bivalve: “The Essential Oyster: A Salty Appreciation of Taste and Temptation.” In it, he also shares a roadmap to the best oysters in the United States.
Bren Smith is the executive director of GreenWave. The longtime commercial fisherman recently discovered restorative 3-D ocean farming of shellfish and seaweed. We reached out to him at Thimble Island Ocean Farm in Connecticut to learn how his underwater farming model is reviving ecosystems, reversing the effects of climate change and creating new jobs.
More From Good Food
The Silk Road show We devote the bulk of this week’s show to food eaten on the ancient Silk Road. Caroline Eden starts us off in Samarkand, then Naomi Duguid and Yasmin Khan take us to Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kurdistan and Iran. Back on our side of the pond, Harvest Public Media’s Kristofor Husted reports on the herbicide dicamba, Jonathan Gold eats at Delicious Food Corner and we shop for fresh kale at the market.
Food and race, the Bäco book and a farewell to summer herbs Jonathan Gold heads to Culver City to review the futuristic restaurant Vespertine. Josef Centeno talks about the hustle leading up to his first cookbook, “Bäco.” Chef and activist Tunde Wey gives us his take on whiteness in the restaurant industry. Plus: Laura Avery gets the secret ingredients behind Royce Burke’s Secret Lasagna at the farmers market.
Making music with vegetables, and mastering Indian cooking technique Listen to the sweet sounds of the Long Island Vegetable Orchestra. Then find out how to cook Indian food with time-trusted techniques. Visit Vermont to hear about efforts to tackle pollution caused by ag runoff. Plus: Great broths and stocks, scarlet runner beans at the market and Jonathan Gold reviews Felix.
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How to make ‘Caesar’ Brussels sprouts like Josef Centeno This recipe comes from the just-published first cookbook Centeno wrote with Betty Hallock, “Bäco: Vivid Recipes from the Heart of Los Angeles.” Read More
How a Tarentaise cheese swept the show Americans love cheese. We eat roughly 37 pounds of it every year. At this year’s American Cheese Society conference in Denver, judges assessed a record 2,024 products to determine which one rose to the top. Our contributor Simran Sethi shares her report on the big cheese. Read More