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Articles by Maddie Oatman

Maddie Oatman is the research editor at Mother Jones. She's also written for Outside, the Bay Citizen, and the Rumpus, and is a 2013 Middlebury Fellow in Environmental Journalism.

Featured Article

Apache forager Twila Cassadore.

This story was originally published by Mother Jones and is reproduced here as part of the Climate Desk collaboration.

Early on in Gather, a new documentary about Native Americans searching for food sovereignty, we follow Nephi Craig on a tour of a former gas station on the White Mountain Apache Nation in eastern Arizona. Craig, a White Mountain Apache/Navajo chef, points to an empty refrigerated case once stocked with energy drinks and packaged snacks. It will soon be full of fresh produce from the farm outside, he explains. The Coke machine on a nearby counter will make way for a cooking fire.

Craig was once trained as a classical French chef, but the journey “was shadowed by chemical dependency,” addictions to drugs and alcohol. When he “crash-landed” back on the Rez, he began to explore the universe of Native ingredients­–agave, amaranth, squash, Anasazi beans. “That was one of the things that helped me get clean.”

It also changed his sense of purpose in the kitchen. Atop the bones of the former gas station, he’s now building a new kind of fueling station: Café Gozhóó, a restaurant designed to “nourish and celebrate our Ancestral Intelligence through fres... Read more

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