All posts filed under: Food

Recipes for a New Kind of Thanksgiving

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Art and Culture / Food / Immigrants

Originally published on Colorlines on November 22, 2013. Despite the political tensions surrounding Thanksgiving, it’s a holiday many use to unite with family and friends. And what ends up on the table is often a tweaked version of the usual fare that better matches the heritage and politics of the celebrants. For some that means looking to food history to incorporate forgotten ingredients that were essential to their ancestors or focusing on local, sustainable ingredients. For others, […]

Mapping Food Justice

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Food Justice / Immigrants

Originally published on Colorlines on October 24, 2013. Check out The Color of Food interactive map on Brown Girl Farming. Natasha Bowens describes herself as a “young, brown female who likes to farm.” And while she didn’t grow up doing it, she’s now dedicated her career to creating a network of other people of color in farming and food justice. Like many people Bowens became an activist in college, and focused her early career working on the 2008 […]

Putting a Human Face on Food Stamps

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Economic Justice / Food

Originally published on Colorlines on September 25, 2013. Last week, when the Republican-dominated House voted to cut $40 billion from the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) over 10 years, it put the nation’s high poverty rates in focus. With the U.S. Census confirming that poverty rates remain at recession level, and the most recent jobs report showing that unemployment is still at 7.4 percent, the possibility of cutting one of the most widely used safety net programs in the country […]

A Unique Alternative to a Prison Economy

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Food Justice / Prison Reform

Originally published on Colorlines on September 23, 2013. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced this summer that he will be closing four more state prisons. Combined with two shuttered this month, that will bring the grand total of prison closures over the last two years to 13. State officials say the rapid rate of prison closures is the result of sharp declines in the number of people incarcerated for drug offenses. They’ve dropped by 71 percent […]

Tongue Tied: Some Dishes from Back Home Can Leave You Speechless

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Cocina Criolla / Feet in Two Worlds / Food / Puerto Rico
Lengua Estofada (Photo: Maria Watts)

By Von Diaz Originally published on Food in Two Worlds on May 2, 2013. Tongue? Seriously? It’s hard to think about cooking an entire beef tongue no matter how trendy it may be to “use the whole animal.” When I lived in the San Francisco Bay Area I discovered tacos de lengua at Taqueria Cancun in the Mission District. I ate them at least once a week, enjoying their texture – delightfully spongy yet crisped around […]

Fear of Frying: A Puerto Rican Cook Confronts Her Culinary Legacy

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Cocina Criolla / Feet in Two Worlds / Food / Puerto Rico
Making surillitos can be a group project. (Photo: Maria Watts)

By Von Diaz Originally published on Food in Two Worlds on April 18, 2013. I don’t fry. I don’t own a splatter guard, even though I could get one at any dollar store. I cook with olive oil and butter – coconut oil if I’m feeling fancy. But I don’t fry. I’m a Puerto Rican who can’t dance salsa and loves vegetables. Despite these ethnic shortcomings, I feel deeply connected to Puerto Rican culture, and […]

Food in Two Worlds Podcast – Mexican Chef Zarela Martinez

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Feet in Two Worlds / Food
Zarela Martinez

My most recent podcast for the new immigrant food series Food in Two Worlds. Originally published on Feet in Two Worlds on December 8, 2011. Food in Two Worlds Podcast: How Zarela Martinez Brought Mexican Cuisine to New York In this Food in Two Worlds podcast episode, Von Diaz tells the story of Chef Zarela Martinez and her pivotal role in bringing sophisticated Mexican cuisine to New York.  Also Mariana Suarez, co-founder of Gourmet Latino discusses the challenges facing today’s Latino […]