August 17, 2012 —
Community gardener Annalee Sinclair is no stranger to the hot seat. After all, she gardened in a syringe-infested abandoned lot on the Lower East Side, in the 1990s, when the neighborhood was a scary and violent place. Robin Shulman is also a cool customer. She should be. She wrote a book, Eat the City. I'm trying to write a book proposal of my own, and I know there is no pressure like a deadline.
So, bring on the lightning round of Stir Fry questions!
I thought for sure I'd stump Shulman by asking her to pick her favorite character from her book. It's like picking your favorite child or sibling or parent! But she settled on veteran Harlem gardener Willie Morgan. (I favored her depiction of the bee-crazy Andrew Coté).
We were obstensibly talking about green beans for this week's Last Chance Foods, but Sinclair wasn't going to be limited by that topic. She chose food producer Goya's beans — all of them, I'm guessing — as her "favorite bean." (I'm not a fan of green beans — I've got bad memories of canned wax beans at the school cafeteria — but, if pressed, I'll go for haricot verts).
My question, "I'm embarassed to admit I eat ...," caused some confusion for Shulman, who must be one of those people who has no secret food shame. Sinclair, though, knew exactly what I was getting at. Without hesitation, she admitted to her fondness for Entenmann's cakes and Twinkies. Me, too, Annalee! Me, too.