Chelsea Green Publishing

Full Moon Feast

Pages:374 pages
Book Art:Black and white illustrations
Size: 7 x 10 inch
Publisher:Chelsea Green Publishing
Paperback: 9781933392004
Pub. Date April 01, 2006

Full Moon Feast

Food and the Hunger for Connection

By Jessica Prentice
Foreword by Deborah Madison

Availability: In Stock


Available Date:
April 01, 2006


Full Moon Feast invites us to a table brimming with locally grown foods, radical wisdom, and communal nourishment.

In Full Moon Feast, accomplished chef and passionate food activist Jessica Prentice champions locally grown, humanely raised, nutrient-rich foods and traditional cooking methods. The book follows the thirteen lunar cycles of an agrarian year, from the midwinter Hunger Moon and the springtime sweetness of the Sap Moon to the bounty of the Moon When Salmon Return to Earth in autumn. Each chapter includes recipes that display the richly satisfying flavors of foods tied to the ancient rhythm of the seasons.

Prentice decries our modern food culture: megafarms and factories, the chemically processed ghosts of real foods in our diets, and the suffering--physical, emotional, cultural, communal, and spiritual--born of a disconnect from our food sources. She laments the system that is poisoning our bodies and our communities.

But Full Moon Feast is a celebration, not a dirge. Prentice has emerged from her own early struggles with food to offer health, nourishment, and fulfillment to her readers. She recounts her relationships with local farmers alongside ancient harvest legends and methods of food preparation from indigenous cultures around the world.

Combining the radical nutrition of Sally Fallon's Nourishing Traditions, keen agri-political acumen, and a spiritual sensibility that draws from indigenous as well as Western traditions, Full Moon Feast is a call to reconnect to our food, our land, and each other.


"Full Moon Feast is the perfect title for this surprising and ultimately hopeful book. It is full of fascinating information and lived wisdom about the plants and animals, fish and birds we consume and how we are misusing the planet we share with them. Prentice assigns a collage of traditional names to the thirteen moons of the lunar year, then leads the reader through the seasons, using ideas the moon's names suggest to introduce a rich stew of fascinating food lore topped off by recipes that illustrate the chapter's themes. Like a memorable meal, Full Moon Feast is convivial, stimulating, comforting, at times piquant, and always deeply satisfying. A feast indeed!"--Joan Dye Gussow, author of This Organic Life: Confessions of a Suburban Homesteader

"Fired by the abuses of modern industrialism, this poet-chef tells her life story as a vision-quest for a world of harmony and connectedness, which she finds in the voices of traditional cultures past and present, condensed in poems, myths, foods, feasts and fasts, tuned to the rhythm of the seasons. As we follow her lunar calendar from Hunger Moon to Wolf Moon, we discover in recipes for Nettle Soup, Sourdough Crackers, Yarrow Ale, new uses and new meanings in the gifts of earth and sea. Meanings multiply in a work that is not a quick bite, but a vertical tasting to be savored slowly."--Betty Fussell, author of The Story of Corn and My Kitchen Wars, A Memoir


"Jessica Prentice’s far-ranging culinary explorations bring us back to the rhythms of seasonal being. Drawing upon mythology, history, and contemporary struggles, Full Moon Feast reminds us of ancient cultural wisdom, encourages us to deepen our connections to the sources of our food, and invites us to make these seasonal rhythms our own."--Sandor Katz, author of Wild Fermentation: The Flavor, Nutrition, and Craft of Live-Culture Foods


Jessica Prentice

Jessica Prentice is both a professional chef and a passionate home cook. In her cooking, Jessica brings together creativity and imagination with a deep respect for traditional cuisine and time-honored culinary practices. Through her work, she seeks to provide a model for how communities can feed themselves in a way that is satisfying and health-supportive on all levels: delicious, environmentally responsible, and grounded in the wise nourishing traditions of our forebears. In her workshops, she seeks to both inspire people to cook, and help them develop the practical skills to feel successful in the kitchen. Jessica currently writes a New Moon Newsletter called Stirring the Cauldron that is sent out to internet subscribers around the world on each new moon. Jessica coined the term "locavore" and helps sponsor an annual Eat Local Challenge ( She is one of the founding worker-owners of Three Stone Hearth, a community-supported kitchen in West Berkeley ( and speaks nationally on building sustainable food systems.


Three Stone Hearth


Build Your Own Earth Oven

Build Your Own Earth Oven

By Kiko Denzer and Hannah Field

Earth ovens combine the utility of a wood-fired, retained-heat oven with the ease and timeless beauty of earthen construction. Building one will appeal to bakers, builders, and beginners of all kinds, from:

    •    the serious or aspiring baker who wants the best low-cost
bread oven, to
    •    gardeners who want a centerpiece for a beautiful
outdoor kitchen, to
    •    outdoor chefs, to
    •    creative people interested in low-cost materials and
simple technology, to
    •    teachers who want a multi-faceted, experiential project for students of all ages (the book has been successful  with
 everyone from third-graders to adults).

Build Your Own Earth Oven is fully illustrated with step-by-step directions, including how to tend the fire, and how to make perfect sourdough hearth loaves in the artisan tradition. The average do-it-yourselfer with a few tools and a scrap pile can build an oven for free, or close to it. Otherwise, $30 should cover all your materials--less than the price of a fancy "baking stone." Good building soil is often right in your back yard, under your feet. Build the simplest oven in a day! With a bit more time and imagination, you can make a permanent foundation and a fire-breathing dragon-oven or any other shape you can dream up.

Earth ovens are familiar to many that have seen a southwestern "horno" or a European "bee-hive" oven. The idea, pioneered by Egyptian bakers in the second millennium BCE, is simplicity itself: fill the oven with wood, light a fire, and let it burn down to ashes. The dense, 3- to 12-inch-thick earthen walls hold and store the heat of the fire, the baker sweeps the floor clean, and the hot oven walls radiate steady, intense heat for hours.

Home bakers who can't afford a fancy, steam-injected bread oven will be delighted to find that a simple earth oven can produce loaves to equal the fanciest "artisan" bakery. It also makes delicious roast meats, cakes, pies, pizzas, and other creations. Pizza cooks to perfection in three minutes or less. Vegetables, herbs, and potatoes drizzled with olive oil roast up in minutes for a simple, elegant, and delicious meal. Efficient cooks will find the residual heat useful for slow-baked dishes, and even for drying surplus produce, or incubating homemade yogurt.

Available in: Paperback

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Build Your Own Earth Oven

Alan Scott, Kiko Denzer, Hannah Field

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Keeping a Family Cow

Keeping a Family Cow

By Joann S. Grohman

The cow is the most productive, efficient creature on earth. She will give you fresh milk, cream, butter, and cheese, build human health and happiness, and even turn a profit for homesteaders and small farmers who seek to offer her bounty to the local market or neighborhood. She will provide rich manure for your garden or land, and will enrich the quality of your life as you benefit from the resources of the natural world. Quite simply, the family that keeps a cow is a healthy family.

Originally published in the early 1970s as The Cow Economy and reprinted many times over, Keeping a Family Cow has launched thousands of holistic small-scale dairy farmers and families raising healthy cows in accordance with their true nature. The book offers answers to frequently asked questions like, 'Should I get a cow?' and 'How Much Space do I need?' in addition to extensive information on:

•    The health benefits of untreated milk;
•    How to milk a cow effectively and with ease;
•    Choosing your dairy breed;
•    Drying off your cow;
•    Details on calving and breeding;
•    The importance of hay quality and how to properly feed your cow;
•    Fencing and pasture management;
•    Housing, water systems, and other supplies;
•    Treating milk fever and other diseases and disorders;
•    Making butter, yogurt, and cheese, and, of course . . .
•    . . . Everything else the conventional dairy industry doesn’t tell us!

Now revised and updated to incorporate new information on the raw milk debate, the conversation about A1 vs. A2 milk, fully grassfed dairies, more practical advice for everyday chores, and updated procedures for cow emergencies.

Keeping a Family Cow has not only stood the test of time, it still remains the go-to inspirational manual for raising a family milk cow nearly forty years after its first publication. Joann Grohman has a lifetime of practical experience that has been bound into this one volume and presented in the spirit of fun and learning.

Available in: Paperback

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Keeping a Family Cow

Joann S. Grohman

Paperback $19.95

Growing Great Garlic

Growing Great Garlic

By Ron L. Engeland

The first garlic book written specifically for organic gardeners and small-scale farmers

Growing Great Garlic is the definitive grower's guide written by a small scale farmer who makes his living growing over 200 strains of garlic. Commercial growers will want to consult this book regularly.

The author tells us:

  • which strains to plant
  • when to fertilize
  • when to plant
  • when to prune flower stalks
  • how to plant
  • when to harvest
    Plus, how to store, market, and process the crop

Growing Great Garlic makes a genuine contribution in the field of garlic classification that will help the public recognize several distinct varietal types of garlic.

Available in: Paperback

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Growing Great Garlic

Ron L. Engeland

Paperback $16.95

The Art of Natural Cheesemaking

The Art of Natural Cheesemaking

By David Asher

Including more than 35 step-by-step recipes from the Black Sheep School of Cheesemaking

Most DIY cheesemaking books are hard to follow, complicated, and confusing, and call for the use of packaged freeze-dried cultures, chemical additives, and expensive cheesemaking equipment. For though bread baking has its sourdough, brewing its lambic ales, and pickling its wild fermentation, standard Western cheesemaking practice today is decidedly unnatural. In The Art of Natural Cheesemaking, David Asher practices and preaches a traditional, but increasingly countercultural, way of making cheese—one that is natural and intuitive, grounded in ecological principles and biological science.

This book encourages home and small-scale commercial cheesemakers to take a different approach by showing them:

•    How to source good milk, including raw milk;

•    How to keep their own bacterial starter cultures and fungal ripening cultures;

•    How make their own rennet—and how to make good cheese without it;

•    How to avoid the use of plastic equipment and chemical additives; and

•    How to use appropriate technologies.

Introductory chapters explore and explain the basic elements of cheese: milk, cultures, rennet, salt, tools, and the cheese cave. The fourteen chapters that follow each examine a particular class of cheese, from kefir and paneer to washed-rind and alpine styles, offering specific recipes and handling advice. The techniques presented are direct and thorough, fully illustrated with hand-drawn diagrams and triptych photos that show the transformation of cheeses in a comparative and dynamic fashion.

The Art of Natural Cheesemaking is the first cheesemaking book to take a political stance against Big Dairy and to criticize both standard industrial and artisanal cheesemaking practices. It promotes the use of ethical animal rennet and protests the use of laboratory-grown freeze-dried cultures. It also explores how GMO technology is creeping into our cheese and the steps we can take to stop it.

This book sounds a clarion call to cheesemakers to adopt more natural, sustainable practices. It may well change the way we look at cheese, and how we make it ourselves.

Available in: Paperback

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The Art of Natural Cheesemaking

Sandor Ellix Katz, David Asher

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