Thursday, May 26, 2011

FOOD,WHAT?! Week 10

Planting Sprouts, and Tacos from Scratch

The early summer sun beat down upon our brows this week at Food,What?! We planted rows of kale and spinach and cilantro, maneuvered blindfolded partners through an obstacle course, practiced straight talk, and cooked savory veggie tacos.

Ice Breaker

The day started with the lighthouse ice breaker; interns in pairs took turns donning a blindfold and walking through a obstacle course. It was up to the partner that could see to shout out clear instructions of how to maneuver through the course with out bumping into obstacles. Most of us made it through fine, despite the elastic nature of the course, as interns redesigned the maze while we were walking through it.


From games we went to work in the newly turned Food,What?! field. We planted spinach and kale in staggered triangulated rows, one foot between each plant. We used forks to turn rich compost into the field. After the seedlings were snug in the earth, we watered them and retreated to the shade of the circle tent.


In the garden shade Interns practiced straight talk; communicating with respect, confidence, and attention to the feelings of your audience and yourself.

We identified strategies, such as getting to the point, being kind and not aggressive. Instead of criticism, we discussed positives and improvables. By telling someone that they could make something better, rather than telling them they have done poorly, you can avoid insulting them and give them information to consider. In arguments, most people don't listen to any criticism. We learned that we can make our point much stronger when we are calm then when we are angry and reacting to what others say.

We listed the guidelines of Straight Talk:

Call it as you see it

Speak the details

Balance the scales

Pick and choose

Read the listener.

Then we practiced straight talk with partners, and identified ways to listen respectfully:

Open Up

Look Up

Listen Up

Store it Up

Listening is an important way to know how we affect others, but ultimately, its up to us to decide what we believe, what criticism we will accept, and how we will respond.


After the workshop, we ran to the kitchen for the highlight of the day; veggie tacos and homemade tortillas. We harvested cilantro, sauteed carrots, chard, garlic, and onion, and smashed beans. We used a wooden tortilla press to flatten balls of dough into tortilla shapes, then threw them on the grill. Soon the beans were smashed, the rice cooked, the veggies glistened and steamed in the pan, and the tortillas piled high on a plate. We loaded tortillas with veggies, beans, cheese and our salsa canned from last season, and bit in. Crunchy, warm and delicious.

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