FROM THIS EPISODE
Artist and community activist Ron Finley says it’s easier to find liquor and fried chicken in South LA than nutritious meals made from fresh, local ingredients: “The drive-thrus are killing more people than the drive-bys.” Finley is determined to change this, one neighborhood garden at a time. After you listen to Evan’s conversation with the “gangsta gardener,” watch Finley’s TED Talk from 2013 and tune into his interview with Frances Anderton on KCRW’s “Design and Architecture,” about the fight to save his garden.
More than 40 years ago, chef Jeremiah Tower began his journey at Chez Panisse to change the context of American food. After a split with Alice Waters, Tower went on to open his own restaurant, Stars, where he mentored an entire generation of chefs. There, he helped to define the ingredients and flavors of what came to be known as California cuisine. Tower is the subject of a new documentary produced by Anthony Bourdain, called “Jeremiah Tower: The Last Magnificent.”
This week, Laura Avery is filling up her massive “Good Food” tote bag with green garlic. She talks to chef Charles Namba about how he uses the fresh stalks to make a green garlic dashi that he serves with clams steamed in Japanese sake at Tsubaki in Echo Park. Then Skyler Prophet tells us how the folks at Milliken Family Farms grow garlic in the Coachella Valley.
In 2014, Wylie Dufresne closed WD-50, the Lower East Side restaurant known for its high-concept modernist cuisine. Now, the chef has a new donut shop in the William Vale hotel in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Du’s Donuts is a tip of the hat to DuFresne’s great-grandfather, who made donuts at a diner in Rhode Island for decades. On a recent trip to New York, Evan invited Dan Pashman to taste Du’s artfully crafted cake rings alongside longtime players in the New York City donut scene: Peter Pan Donut and Pastry Shop, The Donut Pub and Doughnut Plant. Pashman is the host of a super-engaging podcast about all things food called The Sporkful.
More From Good Food
The 'Fuerte Four,’ nixtamalization, and eggplants Gustavo’s Great Tortilla Tournament is this Sunday and our judges are faced with the ultimate decision: corn or flour? Bill Esparza talks tortilla makers in the LA area. And did you know that inside your tortilla is an ancient process, perfected over centuries? Also, L.A. Taco’s Daniel Hernandez recalls a Guadalajara taco crawl with Jonathan Gold. Plus: some tips on cooking eggplant, now in season.
Plastic straws, Persian cuisine, and Meathead Goldwyn What does the history of plastic straws tell us about U.S. capitalism? Growing up in Tehran, Naz Deravian watched her parents entertain with classic Persian dishes; now she’s carrying on the tradition in LA. Stressed about cooking brisket this Rosh Hashanah? Help is here. Plus, Zach Brooks stops by to discuss Jonathan Gold’s review of Vespertine.
Jell-O and feminism, ‘Losing Earth,’ vertical farming A new book examines the intersection of American feminism and Jell-O. This Labor Day, throw some desserts on the grill. Nathaniel Rich dives into the consequences of ignoring climate change warnings. Does vertical farming yield the same nutrient content as open air agriculture? Also: Tien Nguyen remembers Jonathan Gold’s impassioned defense of San Gabriel noodle shops, including Nha Trang.
Thai food, from Bangkok to SoCal Thai food is having a renaissance. We revisit conversations with James Syhabout of Hawker Fare and Pok Pok’s Andy Ricker, who are showing U.S. diners the wider canon of Thai food. We also hear about Bangkok’s unique food culture. How does the history of Thai food in LA tell the story of Thai assimilation? Plus: hear Jonathan Gold’s original review of Jitlada, the beloved Thai restaurant in Hollywood.
LATEST BLOG POSTS
Gustavo’s Great Tortilla Tournament, Grand Finale: And SoCal’s Best Tortilla Is… Wow, what a great time yesterday at KCRW’s Inaugural Great Tortilla Tournament! Throngs of people lined up to taste samples from our Fuerte Four Finalists: Kernel of Truth and Taco… Read More
Gustavo’s Great Tortilla Tournament, week 4 recap: Behold SoCal’s four best tortillas! The bracket has been narrowed, the comal is heating up, and the tortillas are being filled for this Sunday at LA River and Gardens Center in Cypress Park! Find out who the final four are and don’t forget to RSVP for a day of micheladas, tortilla art, and live music. Read More
Gustavo’s Great Tortilla Tournament, week 3 recap: Behold SoCal’s four best tortillas! The bracket has been narrowed, the comal is heating up, and the tortillas are being filled for this Sunday at LA River and Gardens Center in Cypress Park! Find out who the final four are and don’t forget to RSVP for a day of micheladas, tortilla art, and live music. Read More