You nominated your favorite green chefs, and here they are: Forty rising culinary stars, all working to make great sustenance more sustainable.
“I always thought everyone was obsessed with food,” says chef Angela Ginsburg. “It wasn’t until college that I learned it wasn’t normal for a 10-year-old to want to walk around a produce market and just stare.”
Ginsburg is owner and head chef at A Fork Full of Earth Organic Catering, a Marin County, Calif.-based business whose staff is passionate about creating wholesome dishes using products that are sustainably produced and mindfully cultivated. “Our passion for sustainability really stems from our desire to sustain humans,” Ginsburg adds, “to inspire them to investigate what their own bodies truly need to thrive.”
At 22, after earning her degree in human biology from Colorado College. Ginsburg began her career as a chef at the Esalen Institute, cooking directly from the farm and garden. Since leaving in 2005, she has worked closely with many Marin and Sonoma farming communities in pursuit of understanding the traditions embedded in sustainable farming, and says her academic as well as professional endeavors have taught her that inspiring someone to eat well can dramatically change his or her quality of life. More and more convinced that catering offers a unique forum for education, Ginsburg decided not to go the restaurant route and became an enthusiastic advocate for the sustainable agriculture movement.
In 2007, in addition to creating farm-fresh, “wine-country rustic” menus for her events, Ginsburg began producing “educatering” events that combine the pleasure of eating local food with an opportunity to learn about the dish’s healing components. Guests at these events also receive literature about how making sustainable choices is an important lifelong opportunity, not just a fleeting trend.
As an intern at the WorldLink Foundation, Ginsburg is currently working on the Nourish Initiative, a national project whose goal is to use high-quality media, the Internet and school curricula to encourage conversations about where our food comes from. Ginsburg also works as a staff member at Ecological Farming Association, where she co-produces the annual Eco-Farm Conference. Farmers and advocates convene annually to discuss issues current to environmental advocacy.
“The food at Fork Full focuses on the alchemy of the eating experience,” Ginsburg says. “Our cuisine seeks to honor the hard work of the farmer on every plate. We invite people to relax and enjoy the process of eating, which has recently been proven to have profound effects on health. If our bodies could talk, they’d say it’s better to truly enjoy a piece of cheesecake rather than settling on a tofu stir fry that doesn’t interest them. The legacy of dining in our country is built on simple, wholesome foundations that are vastly undervalued in our current culture.”