Grist From The Mill: Summer 2014

editor_pic2What an honor it is to be sharing this launch issue of Edible Pioneer Valley with you! Our issue, titled "Putting It Together," comes to you at a time when farmers' markets are burgeoning with local produce, roadside farm stands are beckoning as you drive by, and your home garden (whether it's several acres or a pot of basil on a windowsill) rewards you with fresh-picked flavors. Our hope is that you'll take the best of what you find in your community this summer and share it with family and friends.

In these pages, we share our best with you: One local grower tells the story of farmers working together to solve a unique procurement challenge. We discuss what "eat local" means at one of the Valley's leading academic institutions. A jam maker lets us take a peek at her process. Of course, we also have many recipes to share with you – there's something for every cook to try.

editor_pic19On a family trip to Greece in the 1980s. I am second from the right. You'll notice that I'm less than excited about what everyone else is eating.  I lived on french fries that summer. 

I can't say that I'm a lifelong student of the food chain. As a girl I had the good fortune to be exposed to many culinary experiences as my family traveled through Europe and Asia. I didn't develop a full appreciation for those experiences until much later in life! I started to really explore food and cooking in my 20s. After a stint in the corporate world, I dove in head first, working as a personal chef and then becoming the chef and owner of a restaurant alongside my husband.

Now as part of a beloved brand published in over 80 cities across the United States and Canada, I have to stay that I "stand on the shoulders of giants" – dedicated publishers, writers and community leaders who have done so much to promote the importance of eating locally, healthily, and sustainably. I also want to thank Melissa Weinberger and the original Edible Pioneer Valley "pioneers" for the work they started in 2008.

With that, I invite you to relax and reflect. Find someone to break bread (real or metaphorical) with, pull up a chair, and start a conversation.

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Mary Reilly, Publisher