The second week of FoodWhat started off with a game of Toe-To-Toe! Farmer D asked a series of questions to get to know each other while staying connected finger-to-finger, elbow-to-elbow, or toe-to-toe. Would you invite Oprah, Usher, or Shakira to a dance party? Would you rather live on the moon or under the sea? What was the best gift you ever received?
After the warmup, Abby brought out the dried herbs that we picked last week to begin making salve. We crushed the plants into a jar of olive oil and let it heat up in boiling water to allow the properties to transfer into the oil. We strained the herbs and reheated it with some honeycomb to solidify the mixture. After cooling, the salve smelled like the healing elements of the plants and was ready to soothe our skin!
Then it was time to get our hands dirty mixing the elements to make a flat mix for the propagation area. Abby explained the importance of these soil mixes to ensure the seeds get the nutrients and water holding capacity it needs. To start the mixture, we began the hard work of breaking up and sifting coco peat. Coco peat is the ground husk from coconut shells and helps the soil retain moisture. We also sifted compost to add into the mix. With a few piles of bedsoil and sand added in, we teemed up as a group to mix it to consistency!
With warm muscles after making the soil mixture, it was time to warm up our brains with a game of Fast Food Jeopardy! Our host, Farmer D, quizzed us on questions from categories of sanitation, health, nutrition, money, and farming. The questions range from the amount farmers make who grow potatoes used in McDonald's french fries, the effects fast food has on health care, and behind the scenes secrets of fast food restaurants. The answers to these questions brought up a lot of discussion and many of the answers had us squirming with disgust at the effects of the fast food industry.
A collection of kale, leeks, onions, broccoli, cabbage, and carrots awaited us in the FoodWhat kitchen after the game for some veggie quessadillas! Abby shared her kitchen experience with some tips on cutting the different types of vegetables safely and efficiently. With all hands on deck, the veggies were chopped and sauteed in no time. The colorful combination was then grilled in whole wheat tortillas with some cheese. For a little extra spice, we used salsa made by the summer FoodWhat crew!
To end the day, we wrote letters to ourselves about our personal goals for FoodWhat, states of mind, and anything else our future selves would benefit from reflecting on at the end of the spring program. The letters will undoubtedly show tons of growth amongst us after a season's worth of hard work, learning about food justice and new ways of thinking, and many, many delicious meals.