As an Education Director with Seedleaf, Lexington native Rebecca Self sees of a world where an educated public participates in the local food economy, with equal access to fresh food for all.
“My biggest hope is that through education, Lexington can take charge of its food system by connecting individuals and their particular strengths and interests so that we will all have our own role in the food economy,” Self said.
This lover of all things green has a dream that everyone can believe in. Dig on, sister.
B&B: Favorite bourbon?
RS: Don’t judge me for this answer – whatever kind you put in bourbon balls works for me.
B&B: Favorite bean?
RS: Edamame cause they’re fuzzy, delicious, mildly exotic but still growable in KY, and my favorite color!
B&B: Were you born in Kentucky?
RS: Yep, Lexington!
B&B: Do you consider yourself to be sassy?
RS: Hmmm, maybe more snarky?
B&B: What type of cuisine influences you most?
RS: Anything Asian, although my French grandmother would not approve of that answer….
B&B: What’s your all-time favorite food?
RS: Sushi and hummus, though not really together.
B&B: What’s your current favorite food?
RS: Grilled veggies – whatever is currently coming out of the garden thrown on a grill with rosemary salt!
B&B: What food do you dislike?
RS: I’m not a big fan of red meat, but I’m in no way against ranchers. (no Oprah here!) I just give my portion to my husband!
B&B: Do you have professional culinary training?
RS: Nope, but I was fortunate to grow up in a family where both my mother and father were extremely accomplished cooks and passed on a fluency and sense of comfort in the kitchen.
B&B: Who do you cook for?
RS: My family and friends. Even more fun, though, is who I get to cook with…specifically, I get to cook with children every week, as well as interested adults in my role as Education Director of Seedleaf.
B&B: What is/was your favorite cooking job?
RS: Anything involving youth, particularly when we get to pick the food from their garden first and then go into the kitchen and cook it and they’re thrilled to discover that they like it! With Seedleaf I get to work with a lot of students who wouldn’t regularly have an opportunity to cook, whose diets often consist of a lot of highly processed food. Despite this, they’re always so excited to work in a kitchen, learning how to handle and use real tools, and taste their creations with all their joy of discovery. With older students, I love how proud they are of their work and how pleased they are to be trusted to do real work.
B&B: Can you share one of your cooking secrets with us?
RS: Anything green can be substituted for a specific one in a recipe. Spinach, kale, chard, collards, mustard—it all works. I also love to put veggies in desserts, like beet chocolate muffins, zucchini cake and green tomato pie.
B&B: Who’s your farmer?
RS: Too many people to mention! I have my own garden, but I also have a CSA share from Elmwood Stock Farm. Fortunately, I also get to enjoy lots of Seedleaf veggies when cooking with students.
B&B: Any food allergies?
RS: Thankfully NO!
B&B: What’s the one food you WISH could be grown locally?
RS: Citrus of any kind and olives.