Truffles are one of the most sought-after foods in the world. People use specially trained animals to sniff out this delectable fungus on tree roots, and a pound of white truffles can sell for thousands of dollars. But there’s a dark side to this delicacy. We talk to journalist Ryan Jacobs about his new book, The Truffle Underground. And he’s got all the dirt: theft, fraud, poisoned dogs, and even murder.
86 – Meet the Farmers Saving Your Food From Climate Chaos
Growing food in America has always been unforgiving. But this year took it to a whole new level: Storm surges and bomb-cyclones wreaked havoc on the Midwest's planting season. Tom traveled to Iowa and Illinois to get the view from the ground, and discovered how farmers are fighting back.
85 – A Syrian Refugee Cures Homesickness With Hummus
In 2018, reporter Shane Bauer traveled to Syria to unpack America’s involvement in its bitter conflict. Hear an excerpt of a special Mother Jones Podcast series following in his footsteps. Then you’ll meet a Syrian refugee chef who couldn’t return to his homeland—but found a way to get a taste of it from New York.
84 – The Problem With Home-Cooked Meals
What’s not to love about a meal prepared from scratch at home? Well, a few things actually, according to Joslyn Brenton, co-author of the new book Pressure Cooker : Why Homecooking Won’t Solve Our Problems and What We Can Do About It. Brenton and her co-authors embedded with nine women to find out what it takes to feed a family today. They found that the expectation to return to the kitchen to solve the food system’s woes places an undue burden on busy parents. Tom talks to Brenton to hear more about the project. And assistant editor Yu Vongkiatkajorn makes some discoveries about what people mean when they use the word “authentic” in Yelp reviews.
83 – Nobody Puts Vegetables in the Corner
If you’ve ever had trouble figuring out what to do with a bunch of vegetables, this episode is for you. Just in time for summer grilling season, Maddie talks to Abra Berens, author of the new cookbook Ruffage: a Practical Guide to Vegetables . Abra dishes on the link between how plants grow and how they taste, what to do about bland, squishy zucchini, and how to make summer veggies the centerpiece at your next barbecue.