More Than Outrageous….funny…sad!

Posted on May 6, 2009 in Hiroko's Blog

I am very fortunate to live close to Union Square in New York City where the city’s largest farmers market operates four days a week.  Since my move to New York City ten years ago I have been living on locally grown/farmed produce, chicken, sea food and other food items except dead cold winter months nearly all of these vendors disappear.  In the course of using these locally produced materials I have learned to use previously unfamiliar and new foods in my Japanese preparations.  This experience expanded my cooking repertoire and even enhanced my professional cooking carrier enormously.  Today interest in Japanese cooking among average Americans is rapidly growing because of its healthfulness and respect for natural food flavors, textures and aromas.  So, I decided to share my recipes and knowledge based on fresh local Greenmarket goods with local New Yorkers.  i contacted Union Square Publicity Programmer at the Greenmarket and offered free demonstrations at the market in exchange of promoting my cookbooks.  I was told to submit my cookbook for evaluation to the office so that Green market officials can check if my book fits to their mission – promotion of local, seasonal produce and food items.  Approval of my book would determine that I am the right person to offer free demonstration to the public at the market.  An e-mail came to me next day which carried surprising message – my book was rejected, so that I cannot offer any demonstrations.  I spoke with the person in charge again and asked for the reason for rejection.  Her response was riduculous.  No matter how much locally available produce and other food items I use in my cooking, using Japanese ingredients like shoyu, miso and the like that are not available at the market make my cooking unfit ot their mission!  Does this mean that any dish in any cuisine that uses ingredients not sold at the Greenmarket is not of interest to market shoppers and is therefore not worthy of presentation to the public?  What a narrow minded people they are!  I am not angry, just sad.