About Me

Me and Dad--the original inspiration

"Cooking should be entered into with abandon, or not at all."

--Harriet Van Horn There's a grainy photo somewhere from the 80's, with me standing next to my dad, helping him make pasta. I was five at the time, and he came to my kindergarten class to do a cooking demonstration since he was a professional chef. I remember looking up at him as he checked the handmade pasta to see if it was done, and feeling so proud that my dad--my dad!--could cook like that. With a father as a chef, my brothers and I grew up with delicious, complex, international foods, all prepared as good or better than we could find in a restaurant. My friends had homemade pizzas and fresh, creamy eclairs on my tenth birthday and they're just as likely to get an unforgettable feast if they stop by the house now. My family and I often stay up until the early hours of the morning talking about recipes, poring over cookbooks, and eating Dad's latest experiments. Sometimes he'll leave messages on my voice mail with a list of ingredients about a new recipe he tried the night before. I'll play them several times; partly for the recipe, partly because I like hearing him so happy, and partly because it's music to my ears.

One of many feasts with my brothers long ago (who now share my same passion for food).

And then there was my mom, a writer and artist who painstakingly taught me to read at the age of three. We used to lie on her bed talk  about our favorite characters and the adventures certain writers took us on as if we'd actually traveled there. A self-professed bibliophile, my mom taught me to gather books into my arms and bookshelves like old friends, the way squirrels gather acorns for winter, for warmth and sustenance in the lonely cold. Writing is your way to contribute to the world, she'd say. It is enough.
So it's no surprise then that I fell into food writing, a way to combine the loves and passions of the two people who raised me. But after years of working as an environmentalist and moonlighting as a beekeeper, I can't just wax poetic about food and bees, I need to do something too. So when I found out about the Slow Food Movement (see here for more info) I finally discovered a way to channel my writing, celebration of food, love of bees and beekeeping, and my activist streak all into one website. And as I eat my way through pistachio macarons and mushroom risotto, I find myself also chewing on this question: How can everyone (not just the middle and upper classes) grow and eat healthy food, and how can we grow it in a way that honors the earth and the bees? Regardless of why you're here--for recipes, stories, or ways to get active, I hope The Buzz inspires.
Please use the contact form to contact me, or email me at jenniedurant at gmail dot com.  You can also see my personal website www.jenniedurant.com.