In case you’ve wondered why it’s just been crickets around the ol’ blog for the past few months, it’s because I’ve spent the past 8 weeks in my first quarter of grad school! I’m in a one-year Nutrition Masters program at NUNM, a naturopathic medical school in Portland.
The summer term is the “fun term,” so along with some more science-based classes (Pathophysiology, Healing Foods), we also had more relaxed classes like Farm to Table and Culinary Skills. Three of my classes were largely cooking based, so we’d meet in the kitchen each week and prepare a bunch of different recipes. At the end of class, we’d get a sampling of everything, sit down at the giant table, and eat! It was great!
For Farm to Table, we visited a different farm or farm-to-table restaurant around Portland each week. On the luckiest of days, we got to eat blackberries while we waited for the tour to start. This class simply reinforced my dream of living on an orchard and opening a bed and breakfast. (Sigh.)
We got to hang out with chickens at Zenger Farm, a magical place that smelled like baked goods thanks to the granola factory next door.
In Culinary Skills (probably my favorite class), we learned a bunch of cooking and baking techniques from our hilarious instructor who kept us laughing the entire time. I learned that I’ve been holding a knife the wrong way my entire life, along with how to flip something in a pan (it’s all about your stance), how to cut cauliflower (slam the whole thing on the counter and watch it break apart!), and how to make a magical thing called “taklia.”
This is me appearing to know what I’m doing:
Team Dinger Brew (pictured below) cooked so hard in Healing Foods Practicum and Culinary Skills. Way to be, team. Way to be.
Our Farm to Table class got to take a chef-guided tour of Urban Farmer, a super swanky restaurant in downtown Portland. They have a rooftop garden and honey bees!
Our final Farm to Table class met at Ground Breaker Brewing, a gluten-free gastropub, for an amazing brunch. They managed to make gluten-free, vegan scones taste like a dream.
My Vegan Diets class culminated in a big potluck where we prepared dishes from our final project (a one-day vegan meal plan, amongst many other things). I’m not sure I’ve ever sampled 13 dishes in one sitting before. Delish.
This term was the fastest 8 weeks of my life, with a plethora of information, recipes, and projects. Now I’m kicking off my 3-week “summer break,” which will hopefully involve a lot of good eats, good hikes, and reading good books just for fun!