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Lifelong Learning

Suzanne Podhaizer is a chef, farmer, and award-winning journalist, with a passion for creative, ethical cooking (and eating). She will host a series of workshops designed to expand your gardens and menus to help you nourish yourself and your community. She and her partner have a homestead in St. Johnsbury where they sugar and grow food plants and mushrooms. Suzanne is passionate about cheese, edible flowers, wild foods, board games, photography, and teaching everybody to braise, concoct chicken stock, and make exceptional salad dressings. These intimate gatherings connect neighbors and new friends for a chance to pick up skills and practice what you’ve learned. All workshops begin at 5:30 PM at the Fairbanks Museum.

Pay by suggested donation (you may pay less if you need, and more if you’d like): $20 for members, $30 for non-members, per session. Money will be collected in a jar at the time of the class, for privacy. Those who wish can pay with Venmo or a check. A brown-bag dinner containing wild ingredients will be available to registered participants by pre-order, for an extra fee.

March 17

Place-Based Eating: Practical Food Ethics for a Tasteful Life

We’ll discuss some of the common ethics-driven diets, and their pros and cons. Then, we’ll dive into the concept of place-based eating: the idea that what one ought to eat depends on where one happens to be. We’ll also consider the Argument from Agriculture, which proposes that no diet can be ethical unless it takes true facts about soil and food production into account.

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April 14

Masterful Menus: Creating Delicious, Achievable Meals Using Seasonal Ingredients

How do you develop exciting, everyday dinner menus based on what you get from the farmers’ market, find in the woods, and/or grow in your garden? Suzanne will share strategies she has used to come up with menus and recipes for her restaurant and her home. We’ll start by modifying existing recipes, and work up to creating our own menus. Everyone will leave with a recipe and two seasonal dinner menus of their own creation.

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May 19 FULL

Spring Foraging: The Common and the Unusual 

After a practical discussion about foraging safety and ethics, and a show-and-tell of wild ingredients from Suzanne’s land, we’ll go for a walk around St. Johnsbury in search of plants that produce edible products. Included in this gathering will be lots of cooking tips and recipe ideas, as well as suggestions for great foraging books, websites, and Instagram accounts. Participants will go home with some pre-harvested ingredients, and informational worksheets about common spring edibles. Be ready to stroll outside for at least an hour, regardless of the weather.