Sustainable Romance

Relevant Times Magazine ran my "Valentine's Day Menu" in their latest issue. because of word count, they did not run the intro that i included or Suheir Hammad's poem "Welcome," so i'm pasting them both here.

Love Grub*

*grub n. healthy, local, sustainably raised food for all

If you ask most people what they got for Valentine’s Day last year, they will invariably rattle off two or more of the usual suspects—flowers, chocolates, and cards. This Valentine’s Day, why not give a gift that departs from this tired triad of presents and cook your lover (or potential lover) a romantic candle-lit dinner made with grub?

Most of the work is already done for you: our menu includes carefully-chosen colors, textures, flavors, shapes, and ingredients, all meant to arouse you and your guest’s many appetites. The recipes are simple enough for any home chef to make without Rachel Ray coaching them through each procedure; and you don’t have to fret over harming your body, small farms, your local economy, or the earth, since you will be choosing as much food as possible that is local, sustainable, and grown with fairness from seed to the table.

So spread some love by throwing on an apron, making things a little steamier in the kitchen, and giving the gift of grub. And If you do decide to go for some bonus points by giving flowers and/or chocolates, be sure to choose organic and fair-trade.


my generosity is not steaming
on the table and waiting
for you before you
even know you want it

come to my house friend you
will find my offering still simmering
i have not yet figured out what
you need and your tastes are mystery
still to me

i will wait for you to enter
my kitchen and once here
you can let me know what you like
sweet and slow
pepper and stirred

then we can share in this gift together
both of us giving
both of us receiving
open handed
open hearted

--Suheir Hammad

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