Local Food Bloomington

Local Food Bloomington is a place for conversation about local food in the Bloomington, Indiana area. Topics may include anything from Farmer's Markets, local orchards, community gardens, community food resources, Slow Food, Heirloom Gardens and gardeners, organic foods, wildcrafted foods, food preservation, organic gardening, etc. http://www.greendove.net/localfood.htm

Friday, March 21, 2014

Cooking Class in Japanese Zen Temple, Bloomington, Indiana

I have had the extreme pleasure of eating food prepared by Yuko and know that she is very passionate about cooking and food as a delicious art!



Cooking class at a Japanese Zen Temple
in Bloomington Indiana.

Click Here for Information

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Food News Updated

A new issue of Food News is now live!  Since it is spring the focus is on seeds and their importance to sustainable communities.  I appreciate all who are out there supporting and promoting real food that can be accessible and maintained by any gardener or farmer.

~In this issue we offer Shout Outs to some small businesses and some really large organizations and mention a few things that seem to pop up regularly in conversations
~We look at what is happening to the Family Farm and the real cost of big agriculture as we know it
~Chemicals in the water, cost to our land and children
~Urban Agriculture
~Green Schools
~Why Say No to GMO and Ask for labeling
~Seafood update
And more

Thank you for your interest and may you plant some open-pollinated seeds.  And may you hold onto good gardening and husbandry practices.


Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Good Food Festival and Conference


If you have the opportunity to attend this festival, it promises to be amazing and informative. 

March 13-15 at UIC ForumThe Good Food Festival and Conference celebrates its 10 Year Anniversary with a family-friendly day of inspiring speakers, DIY workshops, chef demos featuring Rick Bayless, an interactive Kids Corner, and the trade show floor, all designed to grow the Good Food Movement!

Photo by Amanda Areias for Good Food Festival

 Photo by Amanda Areias for Good Food Festival

  Photo by Amanda Areias for Good Food Festival

  Photo by Amanda Areias for Good Food Festival

  Photo by Amanda Areias for Good Food Festival

Photo by Amanda Areias for Good Food Festival

Catch our Good Food Master Class with author Michael Ruhlman and chef Brian Polcyn. Learn to make your own bar infusions and bitters; get a start on home brewing; gather gardening advice and seeds, or take the Urban Farm Bus Tour to see the city’s innovative urban agriculture in action. Bring the kids for lots of tasty samples on the trade show floor and food-related activities in the Kids Corner. Sit down for lunch in the Good Food Court and cruise the Good Food Commons for micro-workshops on everything from backyard chickens to composting tips. It’s a fun, Good Food day for the whole family!

 Photo by Amanda Areias for Good Food Festival

The Localicious Party Friday evening pairs Chicago’s premier chefs who value local food sourcing with farmers for an evening of delicious food and drink and a live Bluegrass band!

Labels: , , , , , , , , ,

Saturday, August 31, 2013

"Healthy Japanese Sushi" Class

*Sunday, Sept. 22, 2-5pm—“Healthy Japanese Sushi” Class

Come join Pei and Yuko to experience this festive, cultural food fair that mingles fun, taste, and visual sensation! In this much-requested class, we’ll make at least two kinds of Japanese sushi rolls (“maki”) using primarily seasonal, whole food ingredients. Various ways of presenting and enjoying sushi, in addition to “maki” style, will be also prepared and demonstrated if time permitted. A great way to expand your sushi experience while having fun and learning various hands-on techniques.

Yuko Omukara, a former cooking instructor at Bloomington Cooking School, will be the co-instructor for the class. Yuko is an expert in Macrobiotic cooking and temple cuisine Shojin Ryori, a vegan, spiritual, and culinary art form in Japanese cuisine. (Register by Friday, Sept 20.)
The space is limited to 10 people and expected to be filled quickly. Please sigh up ASAP. Hope I'll see some of you in my kitchen.


Fee: $40

Pei from the East-meets-West Kitchen
Peilin Chiu peichiu@hotmail.com

Thursday, August 15, 2013


Dear readers, I hope you are enjoying lots of delicious, fresh foods. I have to put my food notes here. They go back a few months and if I were to make a resolution, it would be to post what ever I am going to post and don't let it pile up!

To the business at hand, the abundance of summer foods! A few days before a first Friday when Patricia's Wellness Arts Cafe is open late for Gallery Walk, Nick gave me farm eggs. Enough that I made a lot of egg dishes for my self and even took one to the annual gathering of 5 Women Poets where I was asked to share the recipe.

The recipe that follows is one way I prepared some of the eggs. Because I wasn't thinking recipe, though I knew to make notes; I did not. So here is the delicious egg pie or quichtatta I made. The ingredients list is as close as I could recall. I hope you enjoy.



4 large eggs (6 medium), beaten
½ cup unsweetened Almond Milk


½ cup onion - diced
½ cup carrots cubed
½ cup zucchini- cubed
¼ cup yellow squash - cubed
½ cup Lancinato Kale chopped
½ cup fresh green beans cut into disc

2 pinches Sea Salt
½ tsp L.A.O. Seasoning
½ tsp baking powder
2 tbsp Cornmeal
1 tbsp Barley Flour
1 tbsp Garbanzo Flour
1/8 tsp ground Rosemary
sprinkle of Dill Florets to taste
6 large fresh Basil leaves chiffonade (finely chopped)
4 fresh sage leaves chiffonade
1/8 tsp sea salt
1/4 cup sharp cheddar cheese (more to taste or substitute a favorite cheese) grated
2 tbsp oil – canola or olive

Nasturtium, Sage and Thyme flowers and leaves for decoration. Nasturtiums have a spicy, slightly peppery taste. There are many edible flowers to use and enjoy in food preparation.

Mix eggs and milk together then whisk in grains, baking powder, rosemary, 1/8 tsp sea salt, L.A.O. Seasoning and 1 tbsp oil.

Heat a cast iron pan on the stove top, add 1 tbsp oil, when hot begin to sauté vegetables. First add carrots and green beans into hot pan with 1 pinch of sea salt; when these are hot all the way through, add in your onions and squash, and sprinkle with 1 pinch of sea salt, cook until carrots and green beans are almost tender. Remove pan from heat and stir in basil, sage, kale and dill. Return veggie mix to pan and pour egg mixture evenly over this. Sprinkle cheese over top.

When cooking on the stove top, I use a medium flame and cover the pan for about ten minutes, remove it and continue cooking on medium flame or lower to prevent bottom from burning. If baking in the oven the cast iron skillet is great or you might choose to use an oiled baking or pie pan. You will want to set your oven temperature at 375° – 400° (depending on how hot your oven gets) for approximately 22 minutes. Your quichtata will be done when a knife in the center comes out clean and the top has a light golden brown color. Remove from heat, allow to rest about five minutes before decorating the top with Nasturtium leaves, sage leaves and a sprinkling of sage and thyme flowers. Even in the winter, edible flowers can brighten up a meal. Place dried edible flowers on top of a hot dish and cover and leave for 10 minutes or so. The moisture will hydrate the flowers and they will appear almost like fresh!

The eggs, were from local free range hens; zucchini, squash, kale and green beans from local gardeners

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Upcoming Food Conferences, Calls for Food Papers and Food Presentations

Dear Readers,

The weather has been wonderful and crops of all types are flourishing! Some farmers are having trouble getting into their wet fields, which is very unlike last year when we were experiencing high dry temperatures.

I hope some of you get to these events.


Association for the Study of Food and Society (The ASFS) was founded in 1985, with the goals of promoting the interdisciplinary study of food and society. It has continued that mission by holding annual meetings; the first was in 1987 and since 1992, the meetings have been held jointly with the organization: Agriculture, Food & Human Values.
Working with Bloomsbury Publishing, the organization produces the quarterly journal, Food Culture & Society.
Upcoming event
Toward Sustainable Foodscapes and Landscapes
Join us for the Joint 2013 Annual Meetings & Conference of the Agriculture, Food, and Human Values Society (AFHVS), Association for the Study of Food and Society (ASFS), & Society for Anthropology of Food and Nutrition (SAFN).
Wednesday June 19 – Saturday 22, 2013
Michigan State University – East Lansing, Michagan
More Conference Details Here http://www.food-culture.org/conference/

CALL FOR PAPERS. Thirtieth International Social Philosophy Conference. Sponsored by The North American Society for Social Philosophy. July 11 – July 13, 2013. Quinnipiac University, Hamden, Connecticut. Proposals in all areas of social philosophy are welcome, but special attention will be devoted to the theme of Food.
Possible subthemes:
• Food and climate change
• Food and the environment
• A human right to subsistence
• Food and development assistance
• Feminist concerns over the meaning and implications of food and its production
• Food and (neo)-colonialism
• Food and the implications of government-supported health care
• The impact of war and violent conflict on food production and consumption
• The politics of food production and consumption
• Oppression and Food
• GMO/technology foods
• Food-related disorders (anorexia, obesity, bulimia)
• Food security
We welcome submissions from both members and non-members, but we do require that all presenters join the North American Society for Social Philosophy if their papers are accepted.

CALL FOR PAPERS. The Graduate Journal of Food Studies is now seeking submissions for its first edition.
In coordination with the Gastronomy program at Boston University, the Graduate Journal of Food Studies is an international student-run and refereed journal dedicated to encouraging and promoting interdisciplinary food scholarship at the graduate level. Published bi-yearly in digital form, the journal is a space for promising scholars to showcase their exceptional academic research. The Graduate Journal of Food Studies hopes to foster dialogue and engender debate among students across the academic community. It features food-centric articles from diverse disciplines including, but not limited to: anthropology, history, sociology, cultural studies, film studies, gender studies, economics, art, politics, pedagogy, nutrition, philosophy, and religion.
You can find more information about the journal here (graduatefoodjournal.com). Not a graduate student? Perhaps you can help spread the word to interested parties. The first edition will be published Fall ’13 and the deadline for consideration of review is August 1, 2013. Any questions can be directed to editor Brad Jones (jonesb@bu.edu).

CALL FOR PRESENTATIONS. 2nd Global Conference. Making Sense of: Food. Monday 4th November 2013 – Wednesday 6th November 2013. Athens, Greece.
‘You are what you eat’ is a saying that usually signifies the influence of diet on health and well-being. When we turn this adage around – ‘What you eat is what you are’ – we see more clearly the broader implications of our ways with food. Our history and culture as well as our economic and social circumstances determine, and in turn are reflected in, the nature of our food consumption. The same applies to our personal beliefs and predispositions. Eating is an everyday necessity – and yet there is an immense variety in the manner in which we nourish ourselves.
Click to read more http://www.food-culture.org/news/

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Old-House Expo & Architectural Cake Competition Update

"Patricia's Wellness Art's Cafe" cake on display in the Shower's Building

This is a follow up to my last brief post on Bloomington, Indiana's 2nd Annual Old-House Expo & Architectural Cake Contest which took place Saturday, May 11 2013 from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the atrium of Bloomington’s City Hall at 401 N. Morton St. Eight non-professional bakers had cakes in the contest. Cakes ranged from a 19th-century jack plane, a covered bridge to the Taj Mahal! Every participant received an award. Judges for the delectable event were Tommy Kleckner of Indiana Landmarks, Gayle Cook of the Monroe County History Center and Erica Sagon of Edible Indy Magazine.

The photo above shows my Patricia's Wellness Arts Cafe cake, recipient of the “Most Herbal Essence” award and later judged “best tasting”, with Carol Krause’s Downton Abby, recipient of the “Masterpiece” award to the left. Beyond that is Kathy Holland’s “Smitty’s Standard Station” on West Second Street). I loved the use of gummy candy as hose for the gas pump and gummy rings with lifesaver inserts for the wheels. It was one of three cakes to receive an award for “Best Looking along with cakes by Marlene Newman and Hiestand.

To my cake’s right is a historic land area of I-69 cake detailing the architectural significance of irreplaceable land and life formations; the Taj Mahala by first time cake baker Sara Schwab stands brightly white in the background. It is easy to see how this cake won an award for outstanding architecture.

Here I am receiving my award! A blue ball jar with gourmet lollypops.

This was my first ever food contest. I truly had no idea of what I was getting myself into, or the amount of time on my feet late at night to have something presentable. I started out with the intention of building my Quilter’s Comfort “Spicy Ginger Mint” Gingerbread Cake. I think I have been around too many builders because I was trapped in the idea of building a structure. I approached the entire thing from the perspective of parts to be assembled. I baked walls, front, back and sides, roof pieces and doors.

It is clear to me that I also may have been unconsciously influenced by my one experience creating a gingerbread house with my children decades ago. I even created little planter pots from my spicy mint dough to hold thyme sprigs standing in for blueberry bushes which turned out very well. I even tried to make post strong enough to hold up the front overhang. They might have worked had I some very small tube pans.

So there I was with all the pieces baked and cooled, vegan Royal Icing and my cream cheese frosting chilling in the fridge, it was time to put it all together. As I worked, I had been wondering, how was I going to get the thing to stand up? I knew that I had zero ideas for assembling everything in an upright position, and as I dried, it was becoming very clear that inner support (which I did not have) would be the only way the cake would stand. I run out of most of my grains by the time I mixed my third batch, and had resorted to using some brown rice and little barley flour. To say the least there was a variety of strength in the pieces and pieces made with the brown rice and barley began crumbling even as I stood them on edge.

The hour being late, I had been on my feet form nearly five hours, was tired of standing and I decided to lay out the building as you see in this image below and fell into bed.

I woke early the next morning with a plan. Drive to town, get flour, yogurt eggs; start over, this time making Spicy Ginger Mint Pound Cake. After a day in the “Café” I mixed up a new batch of icing and began the process of layering the soft, yet firm cake pieces together with thin coatings of cream cheese frosting. I then cut and layered pound cake to define my store, I was simultaneously deconstructing the first cake, taking large slabs of the crunchy gingerbread cake into my new cake body. Large slabs with Vegan Royal Icing were also layered to the back of my new cake.

As I worked, I thought of the eaters and how they would experience a variety of textures and taste with Quilter's Comfort's Spicy Ginger Mint as the central flavor and the different color layers ranging from caramel to light molasses.

Once I used up all the icing I had, I wished I had more frosting, then the crumbs would have disappeared and left me with a smoother finish and a slightly less rustic appearance. I knew it would taste good.

The little ginger bread pots received a dollop of frosting to secure the thyme representing blueberry bushes. Originally, I thought I would add popcorn to the little branches to represent flowers. I looked through my jars of herbs hoping to find one dried oregano branch to use as the linden tree outside the shop, alas, I did not find one so the sprig of fresh oregano would have to do. I pushed its thick limp stem down into the cake side sidewalk and supported it with amaranth linguini.

On the drive into town next morning, I asked myself what had I been thinking and that this could be thought of as a once in a lifetime experience. Upon delivering my cake and looking at all the others, I found myself wondering, what building will I bake next year?

For more information about the Old-House Expo & Architectural Cake Contest visit

Patricia's Wellness Arts Cafe & Quilter's Comfort Teas is located at 725 West Kirkwood Avenue in Bloomington, Indiana. Hours are 1:00pm to 6:00pm and every first Friday 1:00pm to 8:00pm where Patricia and Yuko serve delicious herbal foods and Quilter's Comfort teas. Sometimes there is pound cake on the menu. Visit Patricia's Wellness Arts Cafe on the web at http://www.hartrock.net/cafe.htm.

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , ,