What if we were paying attention to the natural world? I’ve often had this fantasy that we should have Fox News, by which I mean news about foxes…
…and what if we had storytelling mechanisms that said it is important that you know about the well-being of wildlife in your neighborhood? This beautiful gift of attention that we human beings have is being hijacked to pay attention to products and someone else’s political agenda. Whereas, if we can reclaim our attention and pay attention to things that really matter, there a revolution starts.
—Robin Wall Kimmerer
Welcome to all new subscribers and a big thank you to all paid subscribers! Let’s dive right into this issue and learn about Microgreens; More about Robin Wall Kimmerer; What Trashpresso is; a brilliant way to store Food and a movie recommendation. Onwards!
-good for your health-
Do you know about Microgreens? I definitely did not grow up eating microgreens!
They are vegetable greens harvested just after the first set of leaves have developed, and can be grown indoors in a small space and at any time of year.
These greens are delicious and are especially wonderful in the middle of winter.
Microgreens are nutrient dense, containing 40 times the nutrients of the plants’ mature leaves.
Some of the microgreens you can grow are radish, basil, cilantro, arugula, mizuna, chard, broccoli and kale.
I love growing an Umami Asian blend (bok choy, baby pak choi, red giant mustard, napa cabbage, and mizuna mustard) and also the Mellow Blend (mizuna mustard, broccoli, kohlrabi, bok choy and red cabbage).
Growing your own microgreens is easy!
I find that the the easiest way is in a ceramic or stainless steel tray using coconut fiber as the material the seeds grow in. The fiber comes in disks, which you break up into a tray and add water to fluff it up. I just add seeds and cover them with a tiny bit of the growing material and water and leave the tray on the windowsill.
Just after the first set of leaves have grown, harvest a handful of microgreens using scissors, rinse and dry, just as your would salad. Eat immediately.
Once you have harvested all the microgreens, compost the coconut fiber, rinse the tray and start the process all over again.
Broccoli and Red Russian Kale take from 10 to 15 days to true leaf, where Basil and Cilantro can take 16 to 25 days.
Microgreens can be added to salads, on top of grain bowls or chilis, in sandwiches or on the side of scrambled eggs.
Resources for buying organic Microgreens online are:
#2- Save Food From The Fridge
-Reduce food waste-
Refrigerators are currently the most popular (and in many cases, only) way to keep our food fresh, but since they run 24/7, they’re hardly the most eco-friendly. Wondering what kinds of alternatives we might be able to come up with, Korean designer Jihyun Ryou created “Save Food From The Fridge”, a collection of art objects that keep food fresh using no energy. Sensible and zero energy, Jihyun Ryou’s objects re-introduce and re-evaluate the way humans connect with other living beings, their food and themselves.
For storing rooted vegetables, Ryou designed a container that stands them vertically in sand, allowing the organisms to save energy in proper humidity conditions. The container for zucchinis, eggplants and cucumbers — which are biologically fruits — has a special small glass funnel with water at the bottom, allowing them to stay fresh and humid. Ryou also combined potatoes and apples — which emit a lot of ethylene gas, which speeds up the ripening process — in a dark bottom area, that will cause them to sprout much later. There is a space for eggs, which can be freshness tested by dipping them in water and seeing if they sink to the bottom.
There are also spice containers with rice in the lid to absorb moisture.
Vegetables and fruits continue to live even after they are picked. They keep breathing, taking oxygen from the air and giving off carbon dioxide, water vapor and heat. By regulating temperature and humidity, it is possible to slow down this respiration, resulting in a longer storage time.
What do you think about this innovative method for keeping produce fresh? Could you incorporate one or more of these methods into your kitchen or pantry?
#3-Robin Wall Kimmerer
-Inspiring human being-
“People feel a kind of longing for a belonging to the natural world,” says the author and scientist Robin Wall Kimmerer. “It’s related to, I think, some of the dead ends that we have created for ourselves that don’t have a lot of meaning.”
Robin Wall Kimmerer is the author of a favorite book of mine “Braiding Sweetgrass”, and who gave a wonderful interview recently in the New York Times. The following are thought provoking excerpts from a longer piece:
Question: Do you think your work, which is so much about the beauty and harmony side of things, romanticizes nature? Or, maybe more to the point, do you think it matters if it does?
I am deeply aware of the fact that my view of the natural world is colored by my home place. Where I live, here in Maple Nation (upstate New York) is really abundant. We live in a place full of berries and fruits. So thinking about the land-as-gift in perhaps this romantic way would come more naturally to me than to someone who lives in a desert, where you can have the sense that the land is out to kill you as opposed to care for you. That’s absolutely true. But I don’t think that’s the same as romanticizing nature. Of course the natural world is full of forces that are so-called destructive. I think
those destructive forces also end up often to be agents of change and renewal. It is a mistake to romanticize the living world, but it is also a mistake to think of the living world as adversarial.
Question: In “Braiding Sweetgrass,” you write about nature as capable of showing us love. If that’s true, doesn’t it also have to be capable of showing us the opposite?
The answer that comes to mind is that it’s not all about us.
Some of these cycles of creation and destruction that promote renewal and change might be bad for us, but we’re one of 200 million species. They might be bad for other species too, but over evolutionary time, we see that major changes that are destructive are also opportunities for adaptation and renewal and deriving new evolutionary solutions to tough problems.
Read the entire interview here
-one solution to reducing plastic waste-
We know that plastic pollution is a scourge on the planet so it’s wonderful to learn about an innovator who is coming up with a viable solution: the solar powered Trashpresso, the world’s first mobile industrial-grade plastic trash upcycling platform.
The Trashpresso unit is the size of two industrial refrigerators and is designed to help with the collection, sorting and upcycling of plastic waste with a minimal air and water footprint.
Trashpresso units consume only seven kilowatts an hour of electricity and can service a community of up to 10,000 people, processing 500 kilograms of plastic waste per day, creating new useful products in three minutes such as tiles, building materials, furniture, and fixtures.
This plastic waste….
Can be turned into new products.
Miniwiz , the designer of Trashpresso, is creating new programs for upcycling local waste in Tibet and participating in beach cleanup of ocean plastic in Sardinia, where the recovered plastics are turned into floor tiles.
Watch video :
#5-The Economics of Happiness
-Movie to watch-
The award-winning ‘The Economics of Happiness' features a chorus of voices from six continents calling for systemic economic change. The documentary describes a world moving simultaneously in two opposing directions. On the one hand, government and big business continue to promote globalization and the consolidation of corporate power. At the same time, all around the world people are resisting those policies, demanding a re-regulation of trade and finance - and, far from the old institutions of power, they're starting to forge a very different future. Communities are coming together to re-build more human scale, ecological economies based on a new paradigm - an economics of localization.
Watch it for free here:
Hope you enjoy watching the film and reading this Newsletter.
Happy Valentine’s Day!
See you in 2 weeks!
Till then, wishing you and your loved ones all the very best,
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