@Mashable Asks: Is Pizza the New Resistance? @bywillpollock

New Zealand the country has always been a place I’ve wanted to visit. But it has a pizzeria that’s now on my must list.

Filadelfio’s Gardens created a pizza last week that spoof’s Donald Trump’s idea of a border wall with Mexico. In case you’d like to make it yourself: the pie is half Americana and half Mexican, with BBQ sauce chiseled the middle representing the wall. “Think we’ll call this one the ‘Trump,'” the post read. “Yes we’re open today.”

Resistance to Trump takes many forms these days, but to see it in a pizza is a great thing. Read the whole Mashable article here by Joseph Earp—and have a look at the history of pizza, here:




Living Up to Philly’s Nickname ‘City of Brotherly Love’

(pictured above: Rosa’s Pizza owner Mason Wartman standing in front of gifted $1 post-it pizza coupons. photo credit: Mason Wartman via People.com)

Philadelphia has a very special joint called Rosa’s Pizza & Grill where patrons can purchase slices of pizza for homeless people for $1. To date, the restaurant has given away more than 10,000 slices of pizza. And some of the restaurant’s regulars have been able to pull themselves out of poverty to find work and a place to live.


Take a few minutes and watch the Upworthy video. Inspiring example of good people doing great things. People magazine also did a nice write-up of the owner and the effort, which you can see here.

(Author note: the pizza place may be in Philly, but the owner is from New York and understands how good pizza is made.) 😉

On #EarthDay, #NoFoodWasted

Tom Colicchio is one of my Foodie Heroes, and today is a good example of that.

Food waste is a huge problem in this country—we waste between 40% to 50% of our food, and when it hits landfills it emits methane. Methane is worse than anything your car or truck emits, and it contributes to climate change.

“Just Eat It” is airing at 10 p.m. tonight on MSNBC, so make sure to tune in. Meantime, here are some of the best tweets on the #NoFoodWasted hashtag:

I’ll try to add more later. Here’s what I do at home:

compost all non-meat waste
grow edible produce in the backyard
recycle all plastics and plastic bags
and I even pick up recyclables around Midtown Atlanta—items that would have a) ended up in a landfill, or b) clogged up our sewer system.

In my opinion, EVERY day should be #EarthDay. And you can start now. ❏

Leonard Nimoy, aka Mister Spock (1931 – 2015)

Photo credit (for all in this post): Seth Kaye Photography, Courtesy of R. Michelson Galleries

Photo credit (for all in this post): Seth Kaye Photography, Courtesy of R. Michelson Galleries

As a kid I would pretend I was asleep… but instead I’d turn on my teeny B&W TV to watch episodes of Star Trek—and Spock was a big reason why.

“Trek” is one of the last science-fiction series and franchises to actually tell stories, and meaningful ones, that still resonate today. Nimoy was also a celebrated and accomplished photographer—something I’m going to write about in the not-so-distant future.

And I’ll do op-ed post soon with excerpts from my interview with him, but in the meantime:


“Spock’s intelligence, bravery, courage, and good judgment don’t win him the universal admiration of his crewmates or of the world. But he did earn their respect, and over time he accomplished most of what he set out to do, from saving their ship, the Enterprise, to brokering peace with the Klingons, to aiding Romulan dissidents.” – Matt Yglesias​


RIP Leonard Nimoy​, one of my heroes. Matt’s article is here.

Leonard Nimoy Photo Project Leonard Nimoy Photo Project Leonard Nimoy Photo Project

Live long and prosper… 

Here are two tweets that were among his last:


And reaction from around the Trek Universe:

#QuotableMondays: Patricia Arquette Steals the Oscar Evening

You might call it an “Actor’s Barn-burner.”

At last night’s Oscar ceremony, Patricia Arquette won for Best Supporting Actress in a film called “Boyhood.” The film is basically unprecedented in that it was shot over a period of 12 years with the same cast members. (read more)

But it was her speech that charged up the room. She said “the time is now” for wage equality for women in America. Meryl Streep, whom Arquette had just beat in the category, leapt out of her chair as she sat next to a very clap-happy JLo. Not everyone was pleased with her comments, that’s for sure.

The #QuotableMonday moment was not up at the Oscar podium, but rather, something she mentioned on the red carpet: GiveLove.org. She’s spoke passionately about it in a red carpet interview, so I decided to dig a bit deeper. Among many other mission points, the organization advocates and works in developing nations to devise better composting and eco sanitation practices.

The irony, at least to me, is our own situation in this country. We waste a tremendous amount of food, and much of it rots in landfills, which in turn releases methane. From the National Resource Defense Council:

“The average American consumer wastes 10 times as much food as someone in Southeast Asia, up 50 percent from Americans in the 1970s. This means there was once a time when we wasted far less, and we can get back there again. Doing so will ultimately require a suite of coordinated solutions, including changes in supply-chain operation, enhanced market incentives, increased public awareness and adjustments in consumer behavior.

The U.S. government should conduct a comprehensive study for food losses in our food system and establish national goals for food waste reduction. One key action will be to standardize and clarify the meaning of date labels on food so that consumers stop throwing out items due to misinterpretation. A waste reduction organization in the United Kingdom has estimated this type of clarification could prevent about 20 percent of wasted food in households.”

Source: National Resource Defense Council

Source: National Resource Defense Council

Household and business composting would solve a lot of these issues, but we also have to change our behavior and purchase practices as well. I compost at home here in Atlanta and I wish more folks did it, because rotting food waste accounts for nearly 25% of national methane emissions.

For us in a developed nation, few people are talking about food waste and the consequences to us as a society. For developing nations, though, some of the basic things we take for granted like sewers and sanitation don’t exist.

Quoting the group’s mission direct from the GiveLove.org website:

• To introduce low-cost compost toilets in order to reduce disease and provide dignity for people living without basic sanitation
• To reduce reliance on chemical fertilizers by producing organic compost products that can improve soil and improve food security
• To teach people how to compost organic wastes and protect water resources
• To change attitudes about human waste & increase awareness about sustainable land-use practices
• To promote EcoSan and composting as viable solutions to water-based sanitation systems

Pizza for Good is based upon the notion that it’s in our nature to give back—to our communities, to charity or people less fortunate. PFG gives you a fun and effective way to do it, too. So what are you waiting for? buy now

I’m going to have a number of exciting announcements soon, so stay tuned! ❐

Pizza for Good: Buy it for recipes, use it for community

#QuotableMondays: Top Chef’s Gregory Gourdet Talks Jacques & Julia


Although he’s seen his fair share of ups and down on Season 12 of Bravo TV’s “Top Chef,” Gregory Gourdet has made it all the way to the final three. I interviewed Gourdet for an upcoming piece at TheBacklot.com, which will be posted this Wednesday.

Of all the irreverent weeks of themed shows, Gourdet says the Julia Child episode was one of his favorites. Have a listen to him discussing Child and an appearance by Child’s friend Jacques Pépin:

“It was really exciting to be inspired by Julia and be able to recreate some of her cuisine,” he says. “Definitely one of the highlights of the season because I wasn’t expecting it.”

Below is the episode in its entirety. The audio is messed up on this clip, but I marked it right when the “Cheftestants” are shown what their theme will be that week:

Why is this related to Pizza for Good? Because there’s an entire chapter dedicated to Julia Child called “Only Child,” with my spin on a chicken piccata pizza. So, you simply must buy it now to get the recipe in full and read the full text.

Hope you all enjoy. And make sure to click over to TheBacklot.com on Wednesday for my post on Gregory. He’s a charming and well-spoken guy.


Pizza for Good: buy it for recipes, use it for community


#QuotableMondays: ‘Create Community by Offering All You Have’ – DJ Donpasta

How is this the first I’ve ever heard of DJ Donpasta? Whatever chef cred I had should be revoked, clearly.

Gliding between the soundtable and butcher block with gleeful ease, DJ Donpasta (otherwise known as Daniele de Michele, an author, DJ and exhibition cook) proves that, YES—you can be a master at many things.

Michele spoke to Lara Rabinovitch at The Daily Good for a profile, and he had some great thoughts about how food—you know, the fresh kind you make at home—is a key ingredient for building community. From the story:

De Michele sees food-oriented gatherings as central to building community and preserving cultural memory—they’re political acts, in his view. “It sounds crazy, but when I try to explain parmigiana you can see how society in the south of Italy works. You have the respect of the season; you have the respect of the work of the people that prepare the tomatoes… You have the respect of tradition. I think the parmigiana is a metaphor for the persistence of tradition and resistance to modern globalization and corporatization of food. You create a community by offering all you have. To create community—to create emotion, a sensation, a connection to memory—you need to make a party, and for me, parmigiana is an instrument.”

Treat yourself to some of his books, or check out his website. He’s quite a character, and I obviously won’t be able to live until try his eggplant parm. 😉

#QuotableMondays is an ongoing series that highlights trailblazers, pizza do-gooders and pioneers in the culinary industry. Subscribe to the PFG blog for your Monday fix!