Midwest Culinary Inst. creates “Vegan Ooh La La!” Banquet

Update, 3/24/11: Seats at the Summit Restaurant were packed with vegans and omnivores epicurious about this menu:

~Arugula-Spinach Salad w/ hummus, Castelvetrano olives, pickled peppers, radish and roasted lemon vinaigrette

~Turnip-butternut squash soup with pumpkin spice, chestnut, and cardamom

~Broccolini with button and shiitake mushrooms in maple-thyme jus

~Black bean-lentil cakes with cumin-spiced collard greens, tortillas, and mango-ginger sauce

~Avocado relish with jalapeño peppers and cilantro

~Chocolate-Hazelnut Butter Torte w/ Coconut Mousse, Chocolate Vegan Gelato and Whipped Passion Fruit

Here are some photos from the event, of the chef, his staff, their guests, and musicians from the local Cajun-style band, Lagniappe. Continue reading

“Citizen Scientists” Needed for National Birdcount

Tree swallows meet in Otto Armleder Park. Photo courtesy of Konstantin Vasserman

This Saturday, join a nation-wide project to help Audubon and Cornell University take an annual “snapshot” of bird populations across the continent. It will be day two of the 14th annual Great Backyard Birdcount, and the third year that citizens will pool their observational forces at the Clifford Bird-Banding Station in Delhi. Continue reading

Protesters, neighbors deliver silent “no” to proposed egg mega-farm

Thanks for your patience with the rough edges of this, Sentient Cincinnati’s first video news piece.  We’ll work on shooting crisper audio for the next one.

Transcript of video coverage:

Today at the Ohio Department of Agriculture in Reynoldsburg, a three-day hearing concluded to determine whether two men from Iowa will be allowed to build an industrial egg farm in Union County, that would use six million caged hens to make liquid egg products.

Ohio Director of Agriculture Robert Boggs had already denied a permit to Hi-Q Egg Products, saying that the company had not made adequate plans to fortify the road system in their would-be neighborhood of West Mansfield. Continue reading

Temple Grandin to speak at Columbus benefit for dog laws

Dr. Temple Grandin, the animal scientist both renowned and controversial for redesigning slaughterhouses using insights gained from her autism, will speak in Columbus next Tuesday. Hers will be the keynote speech in a fundraiser to benefit dog-protective measures in Ohio.

Grandin has bewitched audiences–and inspired a film starring Clare Danes–with the blunt way in which she describes her ideas about animals, autism, and the importance of supporting “all kinds of minds.”  Click below for a sample.

For this event, Grandin will discuss her understanding of the inner lives of non-human animals—including the dogs confined within Ohio’s intensive “puppy mill” breeding operations. Continue reading

Call for Conference Papers: “Thinking About Animals”

A dog sleeping at a train station in northern Chile.


From Brock University in Ontario, Canada:

“The Department of Sociology at Brock University is issuing a Call for Papers for a conference on ‘Thinking About Animals’ to be held March 31 and April 1, 2011 at Brock University, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada.

This two-day conference will explore a variety of issues concerning the current and historical situation of nonhuman animals and interactions with humans. Continue reading

What lies beneath egg labels

John Clark Jr. of Lucky John Slow Market on Woodburn Ave., with his wife Beverly, their son Daewon, and a dozen eggs from Fishbach Farms.

“Ethical Eggs.” “All-Natural.” “Cage-Free.”  Are the approval stamps on egg cartons just marketing claims jostling for space on our grocery bills?  Or can they tell us something about the lives of hens?

This week’s half-billion-egg recall has brought egg production under sharper scrutiny, amid an already swelling river of documentary studies and social movements critiquing animal food production.  Last spring, Slow Food International opened a Cincinnati branch and hundreds packed into a lecture by food policy writer Michael Pollan at Xavier U.  Just two months later, the novelist Jonathan Safran Foer surprised readers with a sweeping work of journalism and family history, “Eating Animals,” which includes a critique of Pollan’s arguments.  In 2009 and 2010, stakeholders and experts convened for the city’s first two Regional Food Congresses, to discuss “the Cincinnati food system, its programs and practices, and to create a vision for change.”  And this spring, over 500,000 Ohioans signed a petition in support of a referendum which would require that all of the state’s laying hens, veal calves, and pregnant pigs be given enough room in their cages to turn in a full circle and stretch their limbs.
Continue reading