The week that was (2 April 2015)

From the lofty perch of my soap box:

- Dan Barber’s WastED has been open for the past month in the original Blue Hill in NYC. The concept was to use all the waste from restaurants around the traps to show how we can be better at using all the scraps we chuck in the bin, a pet peeve of mine. As a random aside, I have been thinking about the culture of the doggie bag. It's come back, it's a thing and it's a great thing. If a restaurant offers it, you should take them up on it. We should be more ashamed sending food back to the bin, not the doggy bag.

Jamie Oliver has just left town, but not before announcing his new education plan for all the G20 countries. Love him or hate him, he does try his heart out. 
The Guardian has published an article on the dry-ageing craze: they note we are “in the midst of an international steak-based arms race.” What started with a lovely way to respect the old dairy cow has turned into a "mine's bigger than yours" competition. There are some really interesting studies about why and how dry-ageing increases umami and tenderness, but one of my faves is this infographic fromHavericks, scroll down for the time-lapse. 

- Another recent Guardian article looked at conventional agriculture and its impacts on soil: “Another paper, by researchers in the UK, shows that soil in allotments – the small patches in towns and cities that people cultivate by hand – contains a third more organic carbon than agricultural soil and 25% more nitrogen. This is one of the reasons why allotment holders produce between four and 11 times more food per hectare than do farmers.” The upshot is don’t treat soil like dirt …

- A last minute addition ... today's Business Insider looked at the top 5 industries to get into if you want to launch a small business in Australia. Restaurants and vineyards are both in there. Go figure!! Read why here

- Finally, two fun facts for your weekend: did you know that watercress gets spicier as the nights get cooler and that lettuce comes from the Latin word lactua (French laitue), named for the milky fluid in its stalks??