Like Beer? Get it near(er)!

Massachusetts Craft Brewers TrailEver heard of a “microbrewery”? What about “craft beer”? According to the Brewers Association, there’s a difference in definition- that being said, they’re both great options if you’re trying to make your beer purchase a little “greener”.

A microbrewery is one that “produces less than 15,000 barrels (17,600 hectoliters) of beer per year“. Pubs or restaurants that sell the beer they make on-site are called “brewpubs”.

A craft brewer, on the other hand, has an “annual production of 6 million barrels of beer or less“. A craft brewer must be small, independent, and traditional* : “Less than 25 percent of the craft brewery is owned or controlled (or equivalent economic interest) by a beverage alcohol industry member that is not itself a craft brewer…a majority of its total beverage alcohol volume in beers whose flavor derives from traditional or innovative brewing ingredients and their fermentation. Flavored malt beverages (FMBs) are not considered beers”.

That’s great… so what’s the significance?

Wine… Fair Trade Certified?

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Here’s my challenge to all of those wine enthusiasts out there: take a look at this list on the bottom right-hand corner of Fair Trade USA’s website and promise to try at least one of these fair-trade wine labels. You may be astonished to find out that Sam’s Club and Target are two fair-trade wine vendors.

I know, it came as a surprise to me too, but fair trade wine does exist. In all honesty, it never occurred to me to look out for the fair trade logo when I went to the store;

First day of Spring: Ode To an Artichoke*

spin and ratiWith a whopping high of 44 degrees, it is a beautiful day in Worcester, Massachusetts (we like to celebrate spring fashionably late in New England). As a token to one of my favorite vegetables that is just coming into season, I decided to post this tantalizing recipe for Slow Cooker Spinach and Artichoke Dip by Chung-Ah on her blog: Damn Delicious. GUESS it’s time for me to scuttle down to my friend Becky’s room and borrow her crock-pot… this recipe looks like a must-try. I personally love to put leftover spinach and artichoke dip in a tortilla to make a good quesadilla, but if you have a fresh batch of this it will make a great alternative to your ordinary potato-chips-and-dip appetizer at your next party. The best part? According to Whole Story, the Whole Foods Market blog, nearly 100% of the artichokes consumed in the United States are grown in California! If you give this recipe a try, let me  know what you think! I can’t wait to test this recipe out.

*In the seventh grade I had to read this poem called “Ode To an Artichoke” by Pablo Neruda (hence the title).

Black Bananas: Whatever Shall I Do?

black bananas

My roommates and I have very different taste, but we share a mutual love for bananas. Once a week somebody orders a bag of them from the grocery program we have on campus. By paying 20 dining dollars, you can purchase six ingredients (i.e. rice, oranges, zucchini, etc.) from the main dining hall. Although we generally appreciate the fact that we receive about eight bananas when the order form indicates “6 in a bunch”, we often are left with a few bananas turning a dark color by the middle of the week. I happen to love really ripe bananas, but my roommates just don’t believe it when I say that they’re still good to eat when the outer coating gets black.

In honor of our dilemma, I decided to post five tips on what to do with bananas before and after they turn that unaesthetic color:

go green cuisine’s first video: Lobby Shop Investigation

Not straying too far from the theme of labels, this video is going to explore where the food comes from that is sold at my on-campus convenience store. It is the first installment of videos to come that will take a look behind sustainability and eating on a college campus.

Do you have a campus that is trying to “go green”? Let me know by leaving a comment (link above)!

 

Spring Forward: Eating Fruits and Veggies in Season

With spring just around the corner, everything just seems more alive. The trees start to bloom; birds sing in the early afternoon; you’re rejuvenated by a warm breeze. As the earth

Photo by visualdensity on Flickr
Photo by visualdensity on Flickr

slowly awakes from its hibernal slumber, sweet fruits and mouth-watering vegetables are on the horizon. Food magazines publish cover photos of delicious dishes, advertising with excitement plump red berries and dewy cucumbers.

But wait a second.. did we not just have strawberries with dessert last Tuesday? I could have sworn Aunt Mary made peach cobbler for the New Year.

Hold on… why is this so exciting?