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DIY yogurt [Recipe]

A good thermometer is key when making your own yogurt. (Photo by Dvortygirl.)

The following recipe comes from Vanessa Barrington's book, D.I.Y. Delicious (Chronicle Books, 2010).

It’s very easy to make yogurt without a yogurt maker. For equipment, you’ll need a two-quart saucepan, a candy or dairy thermometer (optional but helpful), a one-quart mason jar, and a whisk that will fit into it. You also need a method for keeping your yogurt warm while it cultures. Read the FAQ below before getting started.

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Baltimore’s can-do approach to food justice

Beehives from Five Seed Farm and Apiary, one of the farms expected to begin production on Baltimore city land in 2012. Photo: Courtesy of Five Seed Farm and ApiaryCities all over the country are addressing the lack of access to fresh and healthy food on the part of their residents, but few are in as much of a bind as Baltimore. Like Detroit, and other cities known for their class and race disparity, Baltimore has been losing population and gaining vacant land at a fast pace in recent decades. The result is vast swaths of neighborhoods located far from grocery …

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Chow-to: Clean sardines

By now it's become conventional wisdom that eating low on the food chain is more sustainable. In the case of fish, that means sardines, anchovies, sand-dabs, and other small, short-lived fish. Despite recent news that our small forage fish need to be better managed to avoid future problems, if you're going to eat fish at all, it's still best to stick with the small fry. Pacific sardines are a particularly good choice because they are high in omega-3s, low in environmental pollutants, economically priced, and delicious. Cleaning them, however, might be a hurdle. For some it's the ick factor while …

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Queer as farm folk: Can the LGBT community save sustainable farming?

Frank Baylis.Early on in Frank Baylis' farming career, you'd be about as likely to run into an out gay farmer in Virginia as you would a cross-dressing postal worker in Mayberry. Baylis, of Bayshore Kennel and Farm in Tom's Brook, Va., shared one experience, the beginning of which sounds like a very bad joke: "So I walk into the local feed store, and all the usual guys are hanging out by the pot-bellied stove, but there's a new guy there. I say a few words as I'm getting my stuff, and then walk out. Forgetting something, I come back in …

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Chow-to: Tomato escarole soup with saffron [RECIPE]

It's been a bad year for tomatoes in the San Francisco Bay Area. They ripened late, and the inconsistent weather wreaked havoc on their flavor. But great tomatoes are available at the farmers' market for a little bit longer, so I don't want to eat the not-so-stellar ones out of my garden unadorned. This soup is the perfect solution. In addition to mediocre tomatoes, it makes good use of an underutilized green. Escarole comes in big heads with pale, ruffled leaves. It looks a little like lettuce but its part of the chicory family. It is flavorful, but not bitter, …

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Chow-to: Corn, green bean, pepper salad with harissa [RECIPE]

Photo: michelle@TNSThe requirement: a vegan side dish for a potluck full of sustainable foodies Time to cook: less than an hour The ingredients: fresh summer vegetables from a weekend visit to the farmers' market Secret ingredient: a jar of harissa  The result: a hit I admit it. I would normally have added feta or some other type of super flavorful cheese to this salad. And honestly, I love cheese; but it can be a bit of a cop out. So I'm always a little excited when I'm asked cook vegan because it forces me to be more creative in the …

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