The Local Food Report

    

with Elspeth Hay and Ali Berlow

The Local Food Report can be heard every Thursday morning at 8:45am and afternoon at 5:45pm, and Saturday morning at 9:35.

An avid locavore, Elspeth Hay lives in Wellfleet and writes a blog about food, Diary of a Locavore. Elspeth is constantly exploring the Cape, Islands, and South Coast and all our farmer's markets to find out what's good, what's growing and what to do with it.

Ali Berlow lives on Martha's Vineyard and is the author of "The Food Activist Handbook; Big & Small Things You Can Do to Help Provide Fresh, Healthy Food for Your Community." Foreword by Alice Randall, Storey Publishing. You can reach her at her website, aliberlow.com.

The Local Food Report is produced by Jay Allison and Viki Merrick of Atlantic Public Media.

The Local Food Report is made possible by the support of the Local Food Chain.

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You’ve probably heard of a huckleberry. But have you ever eaten one? The small, black relatives of the blueberry grow all over the Cape and Islands, and Neil Gadway has been picking them his whole life.

Photo by Ali Berlow

The Animal Barn is that place where visitors get to experience livestock up close and personal. It's a magical scene with sows nursing their piglets, lambs nursing their ewes. Ali Berlow takes us inside on the last day.

Russian Blues on the cutting board. Their color is truly astonishing.
Ali Berlow

Blue is the color of my summer. It is expansive like the sea and the sky. Royal like a queen. It is round like a blueberry, ocean-salty like blue fish. Blue is also the color of the free lollipop I take from the bank. Blue is Blue Moon ice cream and popsicles from my childhood. Their flavor was (I don’t know)… it was just blue.

David Haddad

David Haddad started a series of pop-up dinners a couple years ago called The Gathered Table. I went to one recently and was totally smitten by the variety of local wild foods used as accents or vehicles for infusing flavor. Bayberry for smoking, or using the buds brined for capers, Beach Rose, Beach peas, spruce tips... 

Salt of the Earth Are the Local Saltmakers

Jul 13, 2017
Photo by Ali Berlow

Using solar power and good old fashioned ingenuity, the founders of Martha's Vineyard Sea Salt make their salt and then create blends like Lemon Dill, Local Smoked Oak and Naughty. Ali Berlow caught up with them at the West Tisbury Farmers' Market.

Photo by Ali Berlow

It was a surprise to discover that shiitake mushrooms are a good source of protein, good enough to replace beef even. And who ever thought of a mushroom as an animal?

Photo by Elspeth Hay

  

Strawberry season, in my family, is a religious thing. We pick strawberries in late June every year, all together, no matter what. 

 

What's So Great About Local Food ? Let's Start with Food Security.

Jun 22, 2017
Photo by Elspeth Hay

Ali Berlow and Elspeth Hay have been taking stock about why local food is important to them. They've talked about local food through a lens of economics, seasonality and now,  security .  

Elspeth Hay

Rachel Hutchinson of Brewster has a deep respect for local clams.

“The Northern Quahog, or our hardshell clam, is a very important species all over Cape Cod," Hutchinson says. "It’s been here since Indian times, so it’s kind of one of our level species, something shell fishermen have always had to harvest. Where there have been booms and busts in other species, the quahog has always been a dominant species for our wild harvesters, as well as for our aquaculture industry.”

Elisabeth Swan, 2017

Here’s what I know about asparagus: it’s delicious, usually green, and, most importantly for us, my friend Scott Britton grows it in North Falmouth. But his doesn’t look anything like the tidy bundles you find in the supermarket. And it sure doesn’t taste like supermarket asparagus—which is exactly what led Scott and his wife Liz to growing their own. It all started when  some friends gave them some wild asparagus….

Elspeth Hay

This time of year at the farmers markets, lettuce is the variety queen. It comes in heads and leaves, reds and greens, crisp hearts and soft butter leaves. Over the past few weeks, I’ve spoken to farmers about growing lettuce, and what varieties they like.

Ali Berlow

Claus is a 3rd grader at the Chilmark School, and he was one of my lunch buddies. We sat together in the school’s makeshift cafeteria, in the community center next to the school. Fresh fish, pollock, was on the menu, and Claus wasn’t all that sure about it.

Photo by Ali Berlow

The green crab (Carcinus maenas) arrived on the shores of Massachusetts in the 1800s. It is described as an alien or invasive species, because of its negative impacts on economically valuable shellfish stocks like clams and bay scallops—though there may be culinary uses in its future, if we cooks get creative.

 

Elspeth Hay

Helen Miranda Wilson grows five kinds of mint and each one has a story. The first comes from her mother’s close friend Nina Chavchavadze, who moved a piece of the plant from her garden in South Wellfleet to Helen’s family property in 1946.

Mr.TinDC goo.gl/8ZmNS1 / goo.gl/cefU8

“Pawpaw is a tree that will grow here, and was growing here, actually, before the Europeans came,” Eliza Travesino said, as we stood in her Brewster backyard nursery, which holds about a thousand tiny trees. “It can grow from about 12-to-25 feet. It needs a few individuals to pollinate, it’s not self pollinating. And it also produces fruit”

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