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Chris Amirault

Edible Communities Newsletters

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I just learned about Edible Communities, an organizatoin that puts out community-based newsletters on sustainable food systems. From their website:

Our mission is to transform the way communities shop for, cook, eat, and relate to the food that is grown and produced in their area. We value local, seasonal, authentic foods and culinary traditions. We strive to put a face on every farmer as we tell their stories and champion their efforts toward a more sustainable and safe food system.

They have a list of publications such as "Edible Boston," etc. but I've never seen one. Has anyone here?

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Hi Chris,

I was an early subscriber to Edible Chesapeake when it started in Maryland about 18 months ago. I have also written for the publication. I know that Saveur praised the first of these magazines, Edible Ojai, a few years back as being a model of what local food community media should look like. Apparently the founders of Edible Ojai took that concept to heart and franchised Edible Communities publications around the country.

Renee Brooks Catacalos

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I write for Edible East Bay, and I'm sure Bruce Cole will pipe in, as he publishes and edits Edible San Francisco.

Saveur not only praised Edible Ojai, they also praised the whole series (a franchise model, as Reneecat said) in a more recent issue. And the Edibles (as I call them) are now in some sort of partnership with Slow Food USA.

The problem with the franchise model is that unless I've seen your local Edible, my knowledge about my local Edible won't translate to yours. Each one has its own editor and its own focus. Some are more homey, some run in-depth features. But each one is supposed to have some percentage of pieces written by local writers, and the focus for all of them is local foodsheds.

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I've just purchased Edible San Francisco, which means I'm now the publisher, editor, ad sales rep, design and layout specialist, distributor, photographer, etc. It also means I'm currently buried, drowning, slammed (pick one) under a deadline.

The best explanation in regards to how the Edible Publications work can be found at the EC website. Here's a link to the FAQ:

Edible Communities FAQ

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FYI...the first issue of edibleBoston will be coming out shortly. Ilene Bezahler is the publisher. It will be available for free in the next few weeks at Boston area farmers markets, coops, etc.

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I'm proud to announce that on October 8th, the first issue of Edible Iowa River Valley will hit the stands here in eastern Iowa, joining 18 other members of Edible Communities, a family of locally produced magazines throughout the country covering the very best of the local food scene.

Has anyone here on eGullet heard of these? Do you read them in your community? If you don't have one in your area, do you think it would work there?

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Has anyone here on eGullet heard of these?  Do you read them in your community?

I've picked up one issue of Edible Sacramento but haven't seen another one since. It had some interesting articles in it.

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I've picked up one issue of Edible Sacramento but haven't seen another one since. It had some interesting articles in it.

When was that? it's a quarterly, so the next one may not be out yet.

What did you see in it that you liked or didn't like? Would you (if your business is appropriate) consider advertising in it? Why or why not?

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When was that?  it's a quarterly, so the next one may not be out yet.

No, it was the spring issue and, according to the website, the summer issue is out. I'm guessing it was five or six months ago.

I picked it up at a bakery that isn't one of my usual stops (it's a ways away from my house) and I just haven't seen it anywhere since then.

What did you see in it that you liked or didn't like?  Would you (if your business is appropriate) consider advertising in it?  Why or why not?

The article that sticks with me the most was about a produce supplier who cultivated the business of small, independent farmers in order to sell to the better restaurants in Sacto. I reckon it must have been a good article if I still remember it after six months!

As for advertising, the question doesn't apply to me.


Edited by Jensen (log)

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I've just purchased Edible San Francisco, which means I'm now the publisher, editor, ad sales rep, design and layout specialist, distributor, photographer, etc. It also means I'm currently buried, drowning, slammed (pick one) under a deadline.

Having just taken over Well Fed, this resonated with me -- I can totally relate. :biggrin:

Hadn't heard of Edible Communities before now -- thanks for the links.


Edited by Sweetnicks (log)

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Hadn't heard of Edible Communities before now --

This comment encapsulates my experience with Edible Sacramento.

"Oh, there's an Edible Sacramento?"

I'd heard of and seen Edible San Francisco around but not Edible Sacramento. The distribution channels for it seem so limited. Why can't I buy it at Raley's or the farmers' markets? That's where I shop!

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This comment encapsulates my experience with Edible Sacramento.

"Oh, there's an Edible Sacramento?"

I'd heard of and seen Edible San Francisco around but not Edible Sacramento. The distribution channels for it seem so limited. Why can't I buy it at Raley's or the farmers' markets? That's where I shop!

Jensen,

You should write the editor and see what she knows about the distribution channels. Often, as Bruce said, the editor is also the publisher is also the distributor.

Note that you can subscribe to any given Edible and have it mailed directly to you. In fact, any Edible publisher would probably encourage you to do just that, as it represents guaranteed income.

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I've just purchased Edible San Francisco, which means I'm now the publisher, editor, ad sales rep, design and layout specialist, distributor, photographer, etc. It also means I'm currently buried, drowning, slammed (pick one) under a deadline.

The best explanation in regards to how the Edible Publications work can be found at the EC website. Here's a link to the FAQ:

Edible Communities FAQ

hello Bruce,

I have a couple of your issues here. I especially liked the Andy Griffin article "Tears in the Milk" in this past spring's issue.

I'm running Edible here in the Iowa River Valley. Our first issue hits stands in October, and Tracey and Carole will be here next week. We're scrambling for ads and finishing up our editing from the 12 writers we've recruited. it's exhausting but invigorating!

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Update:

Our first issue came out on schedule, and we blew through al 10,000 copies in about 4 weeks. it seems very well received, so it seems my partner Wendy and I made the right decision to go ahead with this.

To find out if there is one in you're area, visit this website. It also lists where new Edibles are forthcoming, and even where there is mere interest in having one.

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I just discovered Edible Twin Cities this past summer, and hope to pick up the latest issue this week when I visit The Cities.

SB (even sent a Letter to the Editor, which was printed)

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SB (even sent a Letter to the Editor, which was printed)

I saw that letter, Steve. Panis Minutalis Americanus indeed. And I too am a fan of the foods of the Iron Range, and recently wrote in my book about the wonderful potica at Andrej's

Glad you're reading your local Edible. Remember each one is individually locally owned and operated, so please keep supporting Carol, Michelle and the gang up there!

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  And I too am a fan of the foods of the Iron Range, and recently wrote in my book about the wonderful potica at Andrej's

You'll be sorry to learn that Andrej's, which was located right across the street from my shop, has closed. I understand that Jan, the owner, is still having his potica produced by another bakery.

I especially like his poppyseed potica, although his walnut was a little to grainy for my taste. Of course everybody's grandmother had the best recipe, and my Grandma Baich's povitica, (the Serbian version of potica), used honey instead of sugar for the sweetner.

We always took ethnic foods for granted around here until the original immigrants had all but past away. Fortunately, although it almost seemed to skip an entire generation, interest in making these foods has been revived.

Although there hasn't been a lot of commercial successes yet, (Fraboni Sauage Company probably being the best known), there are so many former Iron Rangers all over the Country nostalgic for a taste of home that I'm sure there are many more to come.

SB (misses the locally produced high-fat butter from Jan at Andrej's)


Edited by srhcb (log)

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I am sorry indeed, but glad to know the potica is still around.

Andrej's demise emphasizes the need for publications like Edible, which promotes the best of local foods. I know that the Iron Range also specializes in Cornish Pastys and Porketta, two dishes which deserve much wider acclaim.

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Andrej's demise emphasizes the need for publications like Edible, which promotes the best of local foods.  I know that the Iron Range also specializes in Cornish Pastys and Porketta, two dishes which deserve much wider acclaim.

My Mother, although of Serbian heritage, was reknowned for her Pasty, which were made "Methodist Ladies Style", learned from her Scots/English Mother in Law, (my Grandmother). They were half-football shaped with a neat crimped seam along the top. And the meat was diced, not ground.

Pastys are sold in many local bakeries and markets, and are still mass produced in church baeemnts for fund-raisers. There is no definitive version, but you know it's the genuine article if you're asked, "with or without", in reference to rutabaga.

Porketta, (not to be confused with the fancier Italian Porchetta, from which it's probably derived), served on a hard roll, is staple at any area gathering. Fraboni's pretty much sets the standard.

Every Italian grocery store used to make its own Porketta. The building my shore is in was originally Cianni's Grocery Store, and is still owned by the same family. In the basement is the chopping block used by Dino Cianni to create his Porkettas, using the recipe his father brought over from Italy in the early 1900's. He continued to make them for many years even after the store closed.

My friends and I used to hang out at a auto repair shop down the block. Dino, who was retired from the iron mines, used to walk down to the shop every day, accompanied by his faithful canine companion, the Beloved Bootsie. Whenever he made Porketta he would bring us a sample.

One time when he brought us sandwiches Bootsie wasn't with him. We accused Dino of using his dog for meat! I even made a poster for "Dino's Dogketta", with a cartoon of a butcher turning the crank on an old meat grinder with a dog sticking out the top. (Luckily Dino had a good sense of humor, and Bootsie was back on the route the next day.)

Another food item found at every Iron Range wedding and funeral are Sarma. They are a ground meat, (mostly pork), with rice mixture rolled up in a cabbage leaf. They're then cooked in a bed of sauerkraut or cabbage. There are generations-long running arguments about various recipes for Sarma, (aka "Pigs in a Blanket"). The most vehement is over whether or not the cabbage should contain some tomato in the sauce.

My Mother made hers Serb style with sauerkraut, but I have to confess to enjoying the tinge of sweetness tomato adds to the cabbage version.

There are several other examples of ethnic foods that are common here. The Apple or Cheese Strudels made by the women at the Slovenski Dom (Slovenian Home) are, I dare say, as good as my Grandma used to make. I can still remember her stretching phyllo dough out on a bedsheet laid out over the dining room table.

And although it's not unique to this area, Wild Rice is indigenous. This Wild Rice bears little resemblence to the hard, shiny black grains commonly found decorating fancy restaurant plates, which is commercially grown in California. These gray-green grains explode when cooked, and have a sweet grassy flavor which goes perfectly with native Walleye.

People of Ojibway ancestory still hand harvest rice from area lakes and rivers using special sticks to beat the grain into canoes. Even most of this rice is commercially processed, but a very small amount is still hand parched, (roasted), the old fashioned way, stirred with a paddle over an open fire. This is the product tribes reserve for their personal use. I'm fortunate to get mine from my friend Big Lou.

As the population has become more homogeneous over four generations some degree of authenticity has undoubtably been lost. There has even been some "fusion" dishes. I've had Turketta, Panko Crusted Walleye, and Venison Pasty. But the Iron Range is still a rather isolated and tradition bound area with many unique features, the wonderful blend of ethnic influenced food being one of the most interesting.

SB (thinking Durian Strudel, Fava Potica, Kobeefketta?) :cool:

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Last Brooklyn edition I saw was the summer one. Tae Won Yu did the only photo in the Back of House segment in that issue.

I'll get caught up with the Brooklyn folks soon. I look forward to seeing your stuff there Turk. Say hello to Brian H. for me if you see him.

Meanwhile, here in IA, our second edition is nearly ready to head into layout, and we are eager to prove that there is still plenty of goof local food in Iowa, even in the dead of winter.

:biggrin:

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Last Brooklyn edition I saw was the summer one. Tae Won Yu did the only photo in the Back of House segment in that issue.

I'll get caught up with the Brooklyn folks soon.  I look forward to seeing your stuff there Turk.  Say hello to Brian H. for me if you see him.

Meanwhile, here in IA, our second edition is nearly ready to head into layout, and we are eager to prove that there is still plenty of goof local food in Iowa, even in the dead of winter.

:biggrin:

And naturally, that's supposed to be "good" food, not "goof"! :rolleyes: I couldn't figure out how to edit it in the original post.

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Last Brooklyn edition I saw was the summer one. Tae Won Yu did the only photo in the Back of House segment in that issue.

I'll get caught up with the Brooklyn folks soon.  I look forward to seeing your stuff there Turk.  Say hello to Brian H. for me if you see him.

Meanwhile, here in IA, our second edition is nearly ready to head into layout, and we are eager to prove that there is still plenty of goof local food in Iowa, even in the dead of winter.

:biggrin:

And naturally, that's supposed to be "good" food, not "goof"! :rolleyes: I couldn't figure out how to edit it in the original post.

Hi Kurt,

Congratulations on your successful launch! Since I posted to this thread back in June about Edible Chesapeake I have gone from writing for it as a freelancer to its new publisher and editor. I just completed the purchase from the previous owners, Ben Larson and Courtney Malvik, and am looking forward to resuming publication with the Spring 2007 issue. I also look forward to meeting other Edible publishers like you at the January meeting.

Renee Brooks Catacalos

Publisher and Editor, Edible Chesapeake

Co-publisher, www.realpeopleeatlocal.com

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Renee,

I'll see ya there! Can't wait - never been to Portland.

Glad to hear you've bought in. All the Edibles seem to be meeting with overwhelming praise and success, it's very exciting to be a part of it.

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