VPR Cafe

VPR Cafe: Chef Dads Cook For Their Kids

Jun 14, 2018
Chef Aaron Josinsky of Misery Loves Company (with daugher, Eda) suggests being flexible when cooking for kids but to keep offering good choices.
Aaron Josinsky, courtesy / Kids Vermont

It's great having a parent who can cook really well, but imagine having one who's a chef! With Father's Day upon us, The VPR Cafe caught up with food writer, Melissa Pasanen, to find out what the area's chef dads are cooking at home. Five-star meals? Mac 'n cheese? And what tasty tricks do these culinary pros use to get the little ones to eat their veggies?    

VPR Cafe: Distilling Dreams (And Spirits, Too)

Jun 7, 2018
Professional colleagues and friends since college, Craig Stevens and Naomi Clemmons, now operate Wild Hart Distillery in Shelburne.
Bear Cieri / Seven Days

Vermont has some outstanding brewers and cider makers, but let's not forget about the ever-expanding list of distillers. Naomi Clemmons and Craig Stevens, colleagues in the public health field and friends since college, operate Wild Hart Distillery in Shelburne and have partenered with other Vermont companies to concoct some unique spirits.

VPR Cafe: Crafting Cuisine With Cannabis

May 25, 2018
In order to cook with cannabis, it must first undergo decarboxylation. One method of doing this is by infusing with olive oil.
egal / iStock

On July 1, Vermont's new marijuana law will go into effect. Residents of the state will be able to grow plants and possess some of their harvest. But not all users enjoy smoking pot; for them, there is cooking with cannabis.

Lumpaing Shanghai, finger-sized spring rolls, are one of the small plates served at Pica-Pica - a new Filipino restaurant in St. Johnsbury.
Hannah Palmer Egan / Seven Days

Central Vermont and the Northeast Kingdom have recently welcomed new food establishments offering tastes of Asia and the western Pacific. Seven Days food writer, Hannah Palmer Egan, shares all the delicious deets in this VPR Cafe podcast!  

Samples of Vermont beer featured at the national Beer Marketing & Tourism Conference held in Burlington in March.
Bear Cieri / Seven Days

Vermont beer is not only wildly popular here at home, but also across the country and around the world. In fact, visit Spain and you might just find a "Vermont-style IPA."  That's what one attendee of the Beer Marketing & Tourism Conference recently shared when it was held in Burlington in March.

Traditional CSA items are still popular, like those from 1000 Stone Farm in Brookfield (pictured), but many producers are now offering niche products like cheese, meat and more.
Courtesy, 1000 Stone Farm / Seven Days

Paying a seasonal fee for a weekly cache of greens and root veggies from a local farm remains popular in Vermont; however, the model of community supported agriculture (CSA) is evolving. In order to offer convenience to customers, many CSA programs are now offering flexible purchase plans and more product options. These approaches also allow more farmers to get in the game.

Elementary school students in Starksboro listen as Eugenie Doyle of Last Resort Farm reads from her book, "Sleep Tight Farm."
Matthew Thorsen / Seven Days

Writing a letter? Having a pen pal? These may seem a little old-fashioned but both are alive and well thanks to NOFA-VT (The Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont). They've come up with a program that connects young students with local farmers through correspondence and field trips.

After learning to bake bread as a child in Germany, Bread and Puppet Theater founder, Peter Schumann, is still rising sourdouogh rye today in Glover.
Sally Pollak / Seven Days

Glover, Vermont, is a strange and wonderful place. There's the self-serve/self-pay Red Sky Trading Company, Currier's Market and Taxidermy, The Museum of Everyday Life and - the epicenter of strangeness - Bread and Puppet Theater.

Vermont's tea culture abounds with many tea rooms around the state including Stone Leaf Teahouse in Middlebury (owner, John Wetzel, in background).
Melissa Pasanen / Vermont Life

There's no doubt the British have a tea culture. But Vermont? Oh yeah, it's a thing!

Cured Perch with Romesco Sauce prepared by Executive Chef Doug Paine of Burlington's Bleu and Juniper restaurants (pictured).
Oliver Parini / Vermont Life

Most of us know what's going on in those little shacks and shanties we see on frozen lakes this time of year. Usually, it's an angler keeping warm, relaxing with friends or enjoying solitude while ice fishing. Around here, popular catches pulled from the water through perfectly-cut circles include Northern Pike, land-locked Salmon and Walleye. But the most abundant is Yellow Perch.  

A bubbly libation from SILO Distillery is just one of the many food and drink options available at Artisans Park in Windsor, Vermont.
Suzanne Podhaizer / Seven Days

This is definitely not your father's industrial park. Although it may appear like one upon first glance, Artisans Park in Windsor, Vermont, is a collection of mostly food and beverage businesses with both manufacturing and retail space on the banks of the Connecticut River. The greenery surrounding it includes an actual park featuring a maze, open space, life-size chess set and more.

Residents of Johnson gather for the inaugural pizza-bake at the town's community oven in October, 2017.
Jim Deshler / Seven Days

Vermont is all about community and, in one Lamoille County town, that means something special and delicious. The Johnson Community Oven was fired up for its inaugural pizza-bake in October of last year, and locals have been loving it.

Holiday dinners don't always need to be dictated by tradition but, instead, can include other enjoyable customs chosen by the group you're celebrating with.
People Images / iStock

In addition to being with family and friends, the holidays also mean breaking out wonderful recipes and food traditions. Often, these traditions are rooted in religion or nationality, but they can also be established by simply determining what everyone with whom you celebrate likes best.

The Mad River Taste Place in Waitsfield is a shared space where food and beverage makers can sell their wares. "Vermont Edition" talks about food tourism in Vermont.
Daria Bishop / Vermont Life

At a renovated bank building in Waitsfield, you can still find some dough lying around. No, not money, but rather foods made with actual dough, along with cheese, beer, meats, spirits and more. The Mad River Taste Place is a shared space that serves as a mini Mecca for food and drink produced in The Mad River Valley.  

Peaslee's cubed, frozen, Vermont potatoes go from freezer to oven.
Melissa Pasanen, courtesy

The potato business has changed since 1928 when Karen Guile-Caron's grandparents started Peaslee's Vermont Potatoes in Guildhall. Now, Guile-Caron is trying to bring her 60-acre family business into the new local food economy.

Chefs working on projects at the James Beard Foundation Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change held this fall at Shelburne Farms.
Melissa Pasanen, Courtesy

When you hear about a boot camp for chefs, you probably envision great cooks preparing fine meals while bedecked in an apron and carrying a rolling pin. That wasn't exactly what went down at The James Beard Foundation Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change. 

Spirulina is an edible type of blue-green algae being grown at a green house in Johnson.
Sally Pollak / Seven Days

Blue-green algae (cyanobacteria) is no friend to those who enjoy a swim in the lake but, in another form, is actually edible, high in protein and rich in certain vitamins. It's called spirulina and being grown right here in Vermont.   

When paired with the right spirits, ingredients like cinnamon, pear, vanilla and rosemary will add an abundance of flavor to fall cocktails.
Suzanne Podhaizer / Seven Days

If you've ever been intimidated by mixing cocktails for guests, don't sweat it. If you prepare ingredients, follow a few simple steps and pay attention to ratios, playing bartender doesn't need to be stressful.

Chef and cookbook author Sandi Earle's turkey chili made with Queen City Brewery's Gregarious Scottish Ale.
Michael Jacobs / Vermont Life

Everyone knows how to drink beer, but what about cooking with it? With the wide variety of craft beer and its many flavor profiles, cooking with it can be just as fun and tasty as using wine.

Flag Hill Farm owners, Sabra Ewing and Sebastian Lousada, have been making hard ciders since long before the beverage's recent wave of popularity.
Melissa Pasanen, courtesy

Hard cider has become increasingly popular in Vermont with the advent of many new makers in recent years. But reach back a few decades and you'll find some of the state's earlier producers, including Flag Hill Farm in Vershire.

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