Need something good to read? Check out these food-related longreads on bananas, omega-3s, and Los Angeles eats.
If you don't live near any of the restaurants honored in last week's James Beard Awards, at least you can still read the great stories nominated in the journalism categories.
Here are a couple of my favorites (not all of them were official winners):
“My Mom Couldn’t Cook”
Tom Junod in Esquire
The story of Junod's mother's cooking and his decision to be his family's cook.
“Captain of the Happier Meal”
Rachael Moeller Gorman in Eating Well
A road trip with Joe Hibbeln, M.D., who believes our diet is making us depressed, addicted, and violent—and thinks he’s found a simple solution.
“Fruit of the Future”
Dan Koeppel in Saveur
If monoculture and disease spells the end for the world's most popular banana, could we be headed for a better-tasting banana revolution?
“CPS Won’t Let Kids Eat Their Vegetables”
Monica Eng in the Chicago Tribune
Why Chicago Public Schools wouldn't allow fresh tomatoes, basil, and other produce—grown by hard-working student gardeners—in the lunchroom.
“Joan Gussow, Teacher of Teachers”
Brian Halweil in Edible Manhattan
A profile of a woman who wouldn’t stop asking questions, and her tireless war against the industrialization of the American food system.
“A Tale of Two Dairies”
Barry Estabrook in Gastronomica (subscribers only)
The story of how dairy farmers banded together to propose a radical solution to the price fluctuations that have characterized the dairy crisis in the Northeast: control of the milk supply.
“Great Grocery Smackdown”
Corby Kummer in The Atlantic
A skeptic pushes his cart through the plastic-wrapped produce aisles to find out whether Wal-Mart, America's biggest retailer, could really be saving small farms and making us healthier.
“The History of Urban Agriculture Should Inspire Its Future”
Tom Philpott on Grist
As urban gardening catches on in hipster circles, Philpott takes a historical long view for a lesson on the future of sustainable cities.
“99 Things to Eat in L.A. Before You Die”
Jonathan Gold in LA Weekly
If there's a lesson here, besides where to eat in Los Angeles, it's how to write a listicle worth reading.
“Popcorn: Cinema’s Worst Enemy”
Rosecrans Baldwin on Slate
An inspired screed against the snack. Rational? No. Funny? Yes.