Los Angeles

Saturday Programs at the Santa Monica Public Library

The Santa Monica Public Library is sponsoring two public presentations and discussions that may be of interest to Slow Food members and friends:

When: Saturday, January 26, 2008, beginning at 2:00pm
Where: Santa Monica Public Library (Ocean Park Branch), 2601 Main Street, Santa Monica
Cost: Free

At 2:00pm, Judith Gerber will lead a discussion of Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver. While sharing the story of her family’s decision to eat home-grown and locally available food, Kingsolver also addresses the greater benefits of become attuned to the seasons and adjusting one’s consumption based on what’s available. As an early review in Publishers Weekly noted:

This field-—local food and sustainable agriculture—-is crowded with books in increasingly predictable flavors: the earnest manual, diary of an epicure, the environmental battle cry, the accidental gardener. Animal, Vegetable, Miracle is all of these, and much smarter. Kingsolver takes the genre to a new literary level; a well-paced narrative and the apparent ease of the beautiful prose makes the pages fly. Her tale is both classy and disarming, substantive and entertaining, earnest and funny. Kingsolver is a moralist (“the conspicuous consumption of limited resources has yet to be accepted widely as a spiritual error, or even bad manners”), but more often wry than pious. Another hazard of the genre is snobbery. You won’t find it here. Seldom do paeans to heirloom tomatoes include equal respect for outstanding modern hybrids like Early Girl. Kingsolver has the ear of a journalist and the accuracy of a naturalist.

At 3:00pm, the emphasis on seasonality and local resources continues. Author and Slow Food member Amelia Saltsman will discuss how to eat well throughout the year with menu suggestions based on the bounty available at our local farmers’ markets. Amelia will also sign copies of The Santa Monica Farmers’ Market Cookbook, a cookbook, shopping guide, and celebration of the farmers who have made the Santa Monica market a beloved resource.