If you follow the local food scene, you probably know that, while our vegetable supply is steady and varied, our fruit options are notably more limited. We get a brief, decadent rush of strawberries in the spring, followed by a smattering of blueberries and blackberries in the early summer, a few weeks of melons, and then a trickling of figs and muscadines in the fall. Throw in some backyard green plums, peaches from central Georgia and apples from the mountains, and that’s pretty much the entirety of our fruit repertoire.
Slow Food Atlanta is partnering with the Global Growers Network to present Atlanta’s first International Farm Tour this Sunday, June 24. The Network is dedicated to helping approximately 250 farmers who found refuge in Atlanta after being forced out of their countries because of war, genocide, and persecution.
Among the dozens of overused food quotes, “Cheese is milk’s leap towards immortality” (Brillat-Savarin Clifton Fadiman) is probably my favorite. American milk has been bounding toward eternity in the care of increasingly skillful hands over the last few decades. Small-scale farmers have grown from making simple, fledgling efforts to crafting sublime cheeses that can stand beside Europe’s finest. With the growth of this industry, organizations in major cheese making regions have naturally popped up to support cheese makers and educate consumers. Vermont Cheese Council and the California Artisan Cheese Guild are two biggies.
At Burgess-Peterson Academy in Atlanta, vegetable-loving children take turns caring for the school’s hens and share in their output of fresh eggs. At Crawford Long Middle School, science teacher Tiarra Moore has commanded an impressive list of grants and awards to build aneducational organic garden and orchard. And at Morningside and Springdale Park elementary schools, students participate in garden-themed science lessons and are treated to cooking demonstrations from visiting chefs.
From cool Thin Mints to buttery Trefoils, Girl Scout cookies are a seasonal obsession, and every year, thousands of girls arrange rows of brightly-colored cookie boxes outside of grocery stores and local businesses. But underneath the sweet façade of smiling girls and delicious treats lies a fierce spirit of competition as girls command their own companies. Each sets her own goal, and those who sell the most are recognized or, in some cases, adorned. At one thousand boxes, she is officially a “top seller.”