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Daniel Klein's Posts

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The life of a seaweed gatherer [VIDEO]

Most of the seaweed we get these days is farmed. But way up in northern Maine, Larch Hanson is still harvesting it wild in its many varieties on the rugged coast. This video isn't about the details of that process, however. It's about the essence of life for Larch, who rises at dawn to cut seaweed and then writes Zen poems about it. Learn more about Larch on his website.

Read more: Food, Sustainable Food

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Communal farming in Vermont [VIDEO]

Intentional community, draft horses, and farmstead cheese. If it sounds like we're in Vermont, that's because we are! This short film takes place at Cobb Hill, a cohousing and farming community, where residents work together and share resources to create what they call the "homebase food system." We got to watch them make cheese, run their CSA, and we shared our fantastic corn chowder recipe with the community.

Read more: Food, Living, Locavore

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God's country: Farming for spiritual reasons [VIDEO]

There are those who farm for food, those who farm for money, those who farm because it's what they have always done. And then there are the Stollers. This family in central Ohio farms for spiritual reasons. They raise organic dairy cows and practice a way of life that is simple, beautiful, and in real connection with the land and each other. Similar to Mennonites and the Amish, they have chosen a life outside of mainstream culture. We spent two days with this family and, despite our differences, we fell in love with their way of life.

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Motor City mulch [VIDEO]

After years of neglect and decay, there's a lot of excitement in Detroit these days. All over the city, once-abandoned lots are being turned into thriving urban farms. In this video, we follow Greg and Olivia from Detroit Dirt and Brother Nature Produce. They have an acre of empty-lot land that they've turned into a small farm. They're also developing a compost center in the city for easy farmer access. Food52 coordinated the volunteers for the day. Watch the video here and check out Food52's account of the events.

Read more: Food, Urban Agriculture

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After the flood [VIDEO]

We are interrupting the linear flow of our cross-country trip to bring you an episode from upstate New York. The flooding that resulted from Hurricane Irene (followed a week later by tropical rains that reflooded farms in New York and Vermont) was devastating. Late summer is time most farmers have been working for all year, and when your crop gets wiped out, it can mean losing the bulk of your income. Such is the story of Pete Taliaferro and Ray Bradley, who appear in this video. We hope our viewers remember that although this storm has left the headlines, people …

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Soil envy [VIDEO]

It seems that most farmers these days are also philosophers. David Cleverdon of Illinois-based Kinnikinnick farm is no exception. We had the pleasure of celebrating David's birthday with him and his family and friends on the farm, and then made a dinner in Chicago with Kinnikinnick produce. It was just another day on our Real Food road trip, but add Chef Paul Kahan -- and some controversial Monsanto tomatoes -- into the mix, and you've got yourself an unusual meal.

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Where the buffalo roamed [VIDEO]

Almost halfway through our six-month, food-focused journey across America, we found a place we didn't want to leave: the stunning J Bar L Ranch, situated on 30,000 acres in southwest Montana in one of the most important wildlife corridors in the country. Gently shepherding cattle across the landscape, ranch manager Bryan Ulring, a former hunting and fishing guide, tries to replicate the bison's role in shaping this habitat. The result is an area packed with wildlife, fertile soil, and plenty of healthy and delicious meat. Best of all, the folks who run this place became our friends.

Read more: Food

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North by Northwest [VIDEO]

The Pacific Northwest is the perfect place for seaside adventures. On this leg of our cross-country trip, we forage for sea beans with Hank Shaw, dig for a giant clam called a geoduck with John Adams and Langdon Cook, and make our own salt with the young locavore chef from a restaurant called Herbfarm. We cook it all up in the kitchen of a new friend, all the while refraining from making dirty jokes about the geoduck (watch and you'll see why this wasn't easy):

Read more: Food, Locavore

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Teen acres [VIDEO]

This week's installment finds us in Portland, Ore., where I really wanted to make a Portlandia-inspired episode. It didn't quite happen, but there were plenty of moments that reminded us of the show -- like getting free valet parking because we were driving a hybrid. We also decided to visit an ultra-practical and amazing farm project called Janus Food Works, where we found young people from Portland getting paid to farm (it's about time) and selling the produce they'd grown. After filming with the kids, we created a meal with their crop for the Plate and Pitchfork farm dinner series. …

Read more: Food, Locavore

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The good shepherd [VIDEO]

The way we eat seems to be in constant flux: Eat no meat, eat lots of meat -- everyone has his or her own opinion. But when a family that actually raises sheep for meat suggests we change our meat consumption, we should listen up. At Magnolia Farm, Elissa Thau raises her sheep with such love and attention that each death is a challenge. Meanwhile, the price of this coddled meat makes it a rare treat for most people. We filmed this short video on our way across Oregon, and while episodes usually comprise a couple of days of filming; …

Read more: Food, Sustainable Food