Tuesday, May 5, 2015
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Madison’s new cookbook teaches ‘Vegetable Literacy’

By
From page A1 | April 18, 2013 |

Renowned chef and cookbook author Deborah Madison returns to her hometown for a presentation at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at The Avid Reader, 617 Second St. in downtown Davis. Courtesy photo

You’re browsing the supermarket’s produce aisle, and you see a bunch of radishes with leaves gone wild. You move on.

Not so fast, says Deborah Madison, a world-renowned chef and author of a new cookbook, “Vegetable Literacy.” Not only does she outline potential uses for the radish leaves, but she explains that the leaves are higher in nutrients than the more popular roots.

Incorporating the less commonly used portions of vegetables is just one of the aspects on which her cookbook focuses, in a section apart from its more than 300 recipes.

“There’s lots of parts of plants that we don’t usually see, because we’re just seeing the choice pieces,” Madison says. “We’ll see the broccoli crowns — sometimes stems — but never the leaves, despite them being edible.

“We talk a lot in this culture about wasting food, but we don’t talk about the fact that there is a lot to plants that we can eat that aren’t generally considered.”

Madison is returning home — she was raised in Davis — to share these ideas. She’ll discuss how people can make use of this knowledge themselves when she visits The Avid Reader, 617 Second St., at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Her brother, Mike Madison, lives just outside Davis and grows organic flowers, melons and olives on land bordering Winters. He also has written books, including his ruminations about life as a farmer in “Blithe Tomato.”

The other local angle connected to her visit is Farm Fresh to You’s sponsorship of the event. The organic produce delivery service has donated several boxes of community-grown foodstuffs to be given away as prizes to attendees.

Having Yolo County’s farming community participate this way feeds into a primary purpose of hers, which is to entice more support for local agriculture in an individual’s food selection.

“I’ve always put a high value on working with farmers, long before it was a fashionable thing to do,” she says. “That’s what really what I’ve been interested in. More of my books are more focused on that than anything else.”

Madison has devoted herself to the promotion of eating produce to such an extent that she’s often incorrectly labeled a vegetarian, she says.

Referring to her as such could be an allusion to the vegetarian dining establishment that provided her entrance into the culinary world in the late 1970s: San Francisco’s Greens Restaurant.

In her background is also a plethora of books — 10 in total, counting her latest — that also would indicate a plant-based diet, such as “Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone,” or “This Can’t Be Tofu.”

However, her interest is in taking advantage of fresh food, she explains, not the consumption (or lack thereof) of meat.

“I’ve never been a card-carrying vegetarian,” she says. “I mean, there’s actually bacon in a recipe of mine.”

But certainly it’s the greens that rule the day in “Vegetable Literacy.” The book’s chapters are split into 12 botanical families — spanning everything from carrots to legumes — to showcase and inform readers of their diversity.

Madison’s cookbook also works to draw parallels between seemingly different types of vegetables. She says it’s a characteristic that has aroused some of the most animated feedback from its readers:

“In particular, they’re always surprised when you say, ‘You know that spinach, beet greens and chard are all related, right? And you can use them pretty much interchangeably.’ ”

With this book’s lessons, readers are allowed improvisation in the kitchen that even extends to those aforementioned radish tops. Don’t be afraid of them, Madison says.

“If you can have more options, then why not use them?” she adds.

— Reach Brett Johnson at [email protected] or 530-747-8052. Follow him on Twitter at @ReporterBrett

Comments

comments

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

     
    Sexual assault awareness campaign recognizes teens

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    Mother, daughters killed in crash caused by wrong-way driver

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
     
    A blessing of the bikes

    By Fred Gladdis | From Page: A2

     
    New comic allows readers to ‘Carpe Diem’!

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

    Fire damages Woodland apartment

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A2

     
    Watering bans, conservation mandates on tap for regulators

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    Learn to use walking poles effectively

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3

     
    Capitol drive collects essentials for young lives

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B3 | Gallery

    Sunrise Rotarians honor student role models

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3

     
    Vet Med Large Animal Clinic has a new director

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B3

    Party celebrates release of Lescroart’s new novel

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3

     
    Grace Valley hosts open house

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B3

    Indoor Fun Fly comes to Woodland

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3

     
    Davis families take a spin at the Loopalooza

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A7 | Gallery

    Pets of the week

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8 | Gallery

     
    Speakers cancel for health reasons

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

    Davis Municipal Fiber will give people a choice

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

     
    Independent study enrollment underway

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

    Faulkner featured at Poetry Night on Thursday

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

     
    Got bikes? Donate ‘em!

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

    Sunset Rotary hosts Thursday-afternoon bingo

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

     
    Winters agri-tour visits Four Winds Nursery

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

    Fresh cherries at Sutter market

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8 | Gallery

     
    Special KDRT broadcast celebrates Grateful Dead’s 50 years

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9

    Dance, dance, dance for a great cause

    By Wayne Tilcock | From Page: A10

     
    Information offered on city tax refund program

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A10

    Monthly tour set at Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10 | Gallery

     
    Tour de Cluck participants can get here by train

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10

    .

    Forum

    Weeds pose a threat to pets

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: B4

     
    Is your bike waiting for you?

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: B4

    Tips to reduce student stress

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: B4

     
    John Cole cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: B4

    Think long and hard about our town’s future

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B4

     
    Whom will our council represent?

    By Michelle Millet | From Page: B4

    New rule: No dough, no art

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    Ready to cut her off

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

    .

    Sports

     
    Visiting Eagles edge Blue Devils

    By Spencer Ault | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    DHS celebrates Senior Day with a fun victory

    By Chris Saur | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Majors roundup: Thompson, D’Angelo lead Brew Crew rally

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

     
    UCD roundup: Aggies baseballers fall in 13 innings

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B12

     
    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    From Bach to rock, Regal Beezers will entertain

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11 | Gallery

     
    Student filmmakers showcased at UCD Festival

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11

    Stellar acting brings home Capital Stage’s dark comedy

    By Bev Sykes | From Page: A11 | Gallery

     
    Student choreographers, dancers stage festival at UC Davis

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11 | Gallery

    .

    Business

    .

    Obituaries

    Emma Sallie Wing Hale

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

     
    Robert Simpson Loomis

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

    .

    Comics

    Comics: Tuesday, May 5, 2015 (set 1)

    By Creator | From Page: B5

     
    Comics: Tuesday, May 5, 2015 (set 2)

    By Creator | From Page: B7