In preparation for Thanksgiving, join us for this interactive virtual program that will include live visits with vendors at the Lower East Side’s Essex Market and Thanksgiving-themed trivia We will learn about the best places to get all the fixings for your Thanksgiving meal, and how different communities celebrate the holiday and infuse their own culture’s flavors and traditions into the holiday meal. We’ll also be joined by artists Theresa Loong and Laura Nova from Feed Me a Story who will share audio clips of vendors and shoppers from their project documenting Thanksgiving traditions in the market. We will also share how the market is supporting the local community and helping those in need during the holidays. This program is offered in partnership with the New York City Economic Development Corporation.
Due to the precarious nature of their business, New York City street vendors’ livelihoods are dependent on knowing and exercising their rights. In this virtual program, we will look at examples that illustrate how vendors navigate the city’s legal and regulatory environment, including the complex permitting process. We also examine how street vendors have engaged, historically and today, with the political process through collective action and advocacy, and explore how the COVID-19 pandemic is impacting vendors and the industry as a whole in the current moment. We will joined by Matt Shapiro, legal director of the Street Vendor Project, who will share insights on the permitting system, as well legislation before the City Council to reform the vending system, Intro 1116.
Potatoes are a staple of the American diet, and a lot of them grow within commuting distance of New York City. On this program, we will connect with Pennsylvania’s Lehigh Valley, where Bob Leiby, an agronomist for the Pennsylvania Cooperative Potato Growers, joins us to discuss what goes into producing potatoes, the challenges of climate change, and new potato varieties and farming techniques under development to meet the challenges of today and the future. Bob Leiby spent his lifetime studying potatoes, raising his first crop as a 10-year-old 4-H member. He received his BS in Agronomy from Delaware Valley College and his Master’s from Penn State studying population dynamics of the Colorado Potato Beetle. He worked for Penn State Extension as a County Agricultural Agent for 36 years. At Pennsylvania Cooperative Potato Growers, he continues to test new potato varieties and growing techniques, and he has also traveled to China and Kyrgyzstan to work on potato issues.
For our final episode of this series, we will meet two chefs who are using the traditions of Thai cuisine as a springboard for culinary innovation. On the West Coast (with locations in San Francisco, Oakland, and Portland), Chef Kasem “Pop” Saengsawang has built his Farmhouse Kitchen Thai Cuisine concept, where he creates new dishes based off of his childhood growing up in Thailand’s Northeast. And from Brooklyn, Chef Suchanan Aksornnan (aka Chef Bao Bao) brings her fine dining background to create Thai fusion in a relaxed approachable setting at Baoburg. These chefs represent a new generation that is exploring exciting new possibilities in Thai cuisine, and we’ll discuss with them what they see for the future of Thai cuisine in America and across the world.
Although popular Thai dishes such as papaya salad and sticky rice are consumed by millions of Americans, few know its origins are from the Isan and Northeastern region of Thailand. There are so many differences between Thai regional cuisine. In this mouthwatering program, we will focus on this region’s culinary traditions to learn about what makes it unique and the dishes to look out for. Bright spicy and sour salads, grilled meats, sticky rice, and lots of chili peppers are just some of the building blocks of Isan cuisine, and we are excited to feature two chefs from the region. We will learn about the famous Som Tam (or papaya salad) from Chef Kulsatree Noree, who owns Amazing Thailand Uptown in Minneapolis, and we will pay a visit to Chef Warunee Mouthapong, who owns Miami’s Siam Bistro and will be preparing spicy salad made of curried rice – as a special treat, Chef Warunee will be joining us directly from Thailand!
This recipe comes to us from Amazing Thailand Uptown of Minneapolis, where Chefs Kulsatree Noree and Sukie Panthialath made classic papaya salads on our Thai Food in America series, episode 5, “Cooking Thai Regional Dishes: Northeast.” This salad comes from Thailand’s northeast Isan region, and we have included the recipe for their Thai version of this salad, but watch the video below to learn the differences between it and the Lao variation they also serve at their restaurant. You can also try this salad with the vinaigrette shared by Chef Yo of Pinto Garden.
The core of Thai cuisine is selecting ingredients that balance flavors – sweet, spicy, sour, and salty. Thanks to the growth in popularity of Thai food in the United States, many staple ingredients are readily available, either imported from Thailand or produced locally. On this program we’ll learn from top chefs about how they obtain the best ingredients for Thai cooking, and we’ll explore the international and domestic supply chains that support Thai chefs and home cooks alike. Our guest will be Chef Terrawong “Yo” Nanthavatsiri from New York City’s Pinto Garden, who sources local, seasonal ingredients to create his innovative takes on traditional dishes, and he will show us how to make a delicious and refreshing seasonal salad.