Raise and Write

Notebooks out! Sign up for these unique learning opportunities to get more intimately connected with the food you eat.

By Mike Thelin and Veronica Martin February 15, 2010 Published in the March 2010 issue of Portland Monthly

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Chicken-Raising Classes at Pistils Nursery

This beloved urban nursery seeded Portland’s urban chicken movement by selling actual chicks. Every other weekend during the spring and summer, the nursery holds two-hour how-to workshops covering coops, feeding, and upkeep, with less frequent courses in the fall. Because chickens, owner Mégan Twilegar argues, are as easy to raise as dogs and offer just as much companionship—and they make breakfast! The real work is in the choosing: beauty or egg production? Pistils keeps several varieties of chickens on-site, ranging from the flashy, feather-legged Mille Fleur to the miniature, short-legged Bantams—or you can request exotics like the Penedesenca, which lay the world’s darkest eggs. —Veronica Martin 

Food-Writing Classes with Diane Morgan

They say the best way to understand architecture is to sketch a building. Likewise, to deepen your understanding of food, consider writing about it. Nationally renowned magazine writer and author Diane Morgan can get you tapping the keys in just six weeks with the Art of Food Writing courses she teaches every January. After spending six years as a chef and caterer in Chicago, Morgan moved to Portland to teach cooking classes and write—15 cookbooks later, she’s a local celebrity who appears frequently on the Food Network and writes for the LA Times, Cooking Light, and Bon Appétit. Her course offers the essentials: writing, testing recipes, pitching magazine editors, and even writing book proposals. Morgan even opens her own Rolodex, inviting guests such as William LeBlond of Chronicle Books in San Francisco to speak to the class. —MT

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