Gourmet Vegetarian: The Diet of Sustainability

samuel.haiden's picture

UPDATE: The Farm of Minnesota, a CSA farm run by Dan and Donna Moe, will be the source for all of the vegetables used in class. I will be exchanging time on the farm for weekly supplies. To make suggestions for produce, visit the blog called "Source Found." Beginning on September 14th, a Wednesday, the Seward Co-Op will provide a full kitchen for our use! Until then, however, a location is yet to be found.

There are a couple of preconceived notions in the world of "Haute Cuisine." One: that good food is reserved for those who can pay for it, and two: that vegetarian meals are a joke. Well, it's my purpose as a chef to turn those preconceived notions inside out, because the reality is that the best cuisine is that which uses vegetables, as flavor ingredients as well as for substance, in the most effective and dynamic manner.

As an avid vegetarian myself,as well as a cook, I am creating this course to show people the true diversity of edible plant life in this world, and how to turn this plethora of delicious ingredients into something creative, dynamic and flavorful as well as satisfying and nutritious. Most of all though, I am creating this class to encourage the adoption of the most sustainable, healthy, and palatable diet known to man: ovo-lacto vegetarianism. We will, however, cover many aspects of the vegan diet as well as raw vegan dishes. Bottom line, this class will teach people how to create food that is as organic as it gets, prepared from scratch, and "good" in two ways. "Good" in the sense of extremely tasty, as well as "Good" in the sense of good for the environment, diversity, and life on this planet.

Facilitator email(s): 
[email protected]
samuel.haiden's picture

Food Source!

Hello to the exco communtiy, as well as any future members of Sustainable Fine Dining: Gourmet Vegetarian Cooking!

I would like to announce that we have a food source now, and that source will be The Farm of Minnesota, a farm that acts primarily as a CSA, owned by Dan and Donna Moe. I will be putting in some hard farm labor hours on their farm in exchange for the freshest of produce, straight out of the CSA itself. Essentially, I will be picking the very vegetables we will be cooking with in this class!

With that being said, here - http://www.thefarmofmn.com/Home_Page.html - is the Farm of Minnesota's website. For all future students in this class, and all those concerned about sustainability in our agricultural system in the U.S., I would like to begin a discussion about sustainability in our agricultural system. Here are a few questions I would like answered.

What effect does the food demand of the population have on the industry of agriculture?

Why is monoculture so prevalent in the US, and elsewhere? Is it an effective system? Why or why not?

What changes can people make in their personal lives to make our system of agriculture more sustainable?


Seward Co-Op
2823 East Franklin Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55406
United States
Facilitator's experience: 
Cooking for three years - Vegetarian for two years - Experience at several restaurants, most recently (and locally), The Birchwood Cafe in Seward as well as Shish in St. Paul - Food Safety Manager Certified - As a volunteer, catered for an organization in Pisco, Peru - Current culinary student at the Art Institutes International, Minnesota
Facilitator phone number(s): 
Class minimum size: 
Class maximum size: 
Class times: 
Wed, 09/14/2011 - 18:00
Location Accessibility: 
Seward Co-Op
2823 East Franklin Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55406
United States
44° 57' 45.7884" N, 93° 13' 47.6724" W
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