Book List: Vegan Cookbooks and Cookzines! Part 3 of 3!

And, alas, we bid sad farewell to our Vegan Cookbooks and Cookzines Book List series. Here’s number one. Here’s number two. And, without further pomp and circumstance, three …


Generation V: The Complete Guide to Going, Being, and Staying Vegan as a Teenager

Going vegan is the single most important thing you can do if you want to get serious about animal rights. Yet, going vegan isn’t always easy when you’re young. You’re living under your parents’ roof, you probably don’t buy your own groceries, and your friends, family, and teachers might look at you like you’re nuts. So, how do you do it?In this essential guide for the curious, aspiring, and current teenage vegan, Claire Askew draws on her years of experience as a teenage vegan and provides the tools for going vegan and staying vegan as a teen. Full of advice, stories, tips, and resources, Claire covers topics like: how to go vegan and stay sane; how to tell your parents so they don’t freak out; how to deal with friends who don’t get it; how to eat and stay healthy as a vegan; how to get out of dissection assignments in school; and tons more. Whether you’re a teenager who is thinking about going vegan or already vegan, this is the ultimate resource, written by someone like you, for you.


Please Don’t Feed the Bears book

by Brad Misanthropic

In the vein of the classic Soy Not Oi cookbook, Please Don’t Feed The Bears compiles three issues of the previously self-published vegan cook zine with a range of tasty and simple animal-free dishes. The collection finally makes available these long-obscure fanzines originally published in the mid 1990s. Here you’ll find incredible recipes for stews, soups, sauces, noodle & bean dishes, baked entrees, deserts and more! There is also a fair smattering of new material bringing this to a whopping 160 pages of deliciousness! In the spirit of Soy Not Oi, these recipes are written to be simple, straightforward, and perfect for the newest convert to the vegan revolution! But far from bring just a vegan cookbook, Please Don’t Feed The Bears reads as a look into vegan lifestyle and underground culture. The book is thoroughly illustrated with eye-catching drawings and clearly laid-out graphics. In addition, the book also includes assorted rantings about music and the politics of leading a vegan lifestyle. Together the book provides easy-to-make and delectable recipes while reflecting the DIY punk rock sensibility of zine culture.


So Raw It’s Downright Filthy

by Joshua Ploeg

Let us not understate the might and magic of Joshua Ploeg’s cooking. The dude’s meals sparkle in your mouth; they burst and bloom; they explode and breakdance and pirouette! Joshua’s the “traveling vegan chef” and he is—as we speak, no less!—touring the world making insane-in-the-membrane multi-course DIY meals at shows and dinner parties. (You can book him right here! A wonderful follow-up to his third cookbook, In Search of the Lost Taste, this brand-new zine is Joshua’s take on raw food and it is llllllong awaited. Revel in the majesty of easy and cheap recipes like his Mushroom-Pear Salad with Five Spice. Give yourself a massive high five after fixin’ up his pho (which is pho-king great!). Go bananas with his green curry, his incredible Shitakesbury Steak, his OMG-worthy raw Shepherd’s Pie! Want some more? There’s more, much more: 28 slammin’ pages with tips on all-things raw, raw-related articles, and awesome-a-licious recipes like Garlic-Sunflower Pate, Cashew Sour Cream, Melon Gazpacho, and Gumbo! The raw diet does not have to mean a pile of wilted lettuce with lime squeezed over it or a handful of stinkin’ peanuts! The raw diet can be a party!


Alt text


How It All Vegan Book

by Tanya Barnard

Vegan recipes for such delights as bee pollen blue banana muffins, tofu jerky, vegan ice cream, chocolate cheese-free cake, and cosmetics, pet treats, even household cleaners.


Alt text


Garlic-Onion-Beet-Spinach-Mango-Carrot-Grapefruit Juice

by Nathalie VanBalen

“Garlic-Onion-Beet-Spinach-Mango-Carrot-Grapefruit Juice is a fresh, one-of-a-kind book designed to get a person’s mental juices flowing about compassion, vegetarianism, stereotypes,  expectations, and (of course) juicing. Like the title, a lot of interesting ingredients get blended together in this book; and although it sounds funny, it sure gets one ‘pumped!’ (like the the main characters say). The story revolves around two characters who are super enthusiastic about juicing. They find a reference to using yellow spotted snail shells to make them strong and healthy (and it goes well with juice!), so they bag a bunch and prepare to add them to their special garlic-onion-beet-spinach-mango-carrot-grapefruit juice. One of their housemates firmly believes snail shells do not belong in juice and begins thinking about the snails’ perspective and models critical thinking, empathy, and compassion for the reader. She asks herself thoughtful questions, one of which is ‘How does it feel to be food?'” -VegBooks review Note: Also check out author Nathalie VanBalen’s vegan Thanksgiving coloring zine, Happy Thanksliving!


Alt text

Vegan Freak Book: Being Vegan in a Non-Vegan World, Version 2.0

by Bob Torres

At one time or another, every vegan has felt like an outsider, even in places where they’re supposed to feel comfortable. This book is written to help you embrace your inner vegan freak. Written by people all along the continuum of veganism—there is a special focus towards young, independent minded, tattooed vegans. There’s practical tips, advice, stories, and comprehensive lists of resources, tips of keeping sane, being happy, and being healthy in a non-vegan world. Witty, opinionated, and eminently useful. The tone is refreshing compared and language to most books of this sort. Note: This edition includes revised, expanded, and updated material.

Green is the New Red: An Insider’s Account of a Social Movement Under Siege

by Will Potter

Like the Red Scare, this “Green Scare” is about fear and intimidation, using a word—”eco-terrorist”—to push a political agenda, instill fear and silence dissent. The animal rights and environmental movements directly threaten corporate profits every time activists encourage people to go vegan, to stop driving, to consume fewer resources and live simply. Their boycotts are damaging, and corporations and the politicians who represent them know it. In many ways, the Green Scare, like the Red Scare, can be seen as a culture war, a war of values.

Will Potter outlines the political, legal, extra-legal, and public relations strategies that are being used to threaten even acts of nonviolent civil disobedience with the label of “terrorism.” Here is a guided tour into the world of radical activism that introduces the real people behind the headlines and tells the story of how everyday people are being prevented from speaking up for what they believe in.

Happy Thanksliving! A Coloring Zine

by Nathalie VanBalen

This one is somethin’ special. Nathalie VanBalen’s Happy Thanksliving! is a coloring zine about having a vegan Thanksgiving! The fully illustrated zine is a friendly take on animal rights, beginning its running narrative with “We’re setting the table and chopping our veggies for a Thanksgiving feast tonight. We’re excited to say that this is our way to celebrate feeling just right. There isn’t a turkey on our table and we’re happy to tell you why–because turkeys are FRIENDS (like cats and dogs) and feathered friends must FLY!” This engaging, happy, good-hearted zine is perfect for radical kids and adults alike. VanBalen, author of the awesome Garlic-Onion-Beet-Spinach-Mango-Carrot-Grapefruit Juice, has done a good thing here and we’re stoked to have this on our site. We’ve only got a few of these so jump on this while it’s HOT! Get those crayons and colored pencils ready!


Book List: Vegan Cookbooks and Cookzines! Part 2 of 3!

Part two! See part one right here.


Barefoot & In the Kitchen: Vegan Recipes For You

by Ashley Rowe

COMING JULY 1! This heavily illustrated vegan cookbook is packed with delicious recipes and entertaining essays. Not at all an exclusive affair, Barefoot and in the Kitchen works with ingredients available to folks everywhere—not just those with access to fancy health food stores. Make a basic white sauce, your own seitan, mac’n’cheese, cornbread, and cookies. Folks who have been vegan for awhile will love variations like stuffed shells, dirty rice, and “Cinnamon Buns of Doom.” For Ashley resistance is tasty and once you try out these recipes your resistance will taste good too!

Alt text

Hot Damn & Hell Yeah / The Dirty South

An anthology of Vanessa’s “The Dirty South”, meets Ryan Splint’s Australian masterpiece “Hot Damn and Hell Yeah”. HD&HY is a finely illustrated and designed collection of recipes that aren’t afraid of spices but are suited for those into easy to find ingredients that don’t taste like sawdust. The Dirty South is a unique take on southern cooking, vegan style with some tasty delectables, especially for those not afraid of garlic or baking. Sizzling with great cooking ideas and recipes, nutrition isn’t always the first priority for either of these editors but the recipes are damn tasty!


Vegan Cupcakes book: 75 Dairy Free Recipes for Cupcakes that Rule!

by Isa Chandra Moskowitz

I like cupcakes! I like vegans too! I want to keep vegan cupcake eaters happy. What do I do? Hmm, well, I can’t go across the street to the Hostess outlet. I’m pretty sure that they use animal shortening in their products, ewww! Maybe I will make the vegans cupcakes myself. If I only had a recipe. Or several, like 75. Wait, there is a book about it? And they are all yummy? For reals? Well, let’s make some cupcakes! And support Total Cupcake Domination!


Vegan Girl’s Guide to Life

by Melisser Elliott

Anyone interested in a cruelty-free lifestyle can discover beauty products, fun vacation spots, plus an assortment of recipes including Jackfruit “Carnitas” Tacos, Twice Baked Chipotle Sweet Potatoes, Curried Red Lentil Veggie Burgers, Chipotle Hominy Stew, and Double Chocolate Cookies. Learn how to make recycled cake stands, find a cross-stitch pattern by Stitch’d Ink, and find out about natural beauty and cleaning products. From Sugar Beat Sweets baker and blogger Melisser!


Alt text

Fire & Ice zine

by Joshua Ploeg

Traveling chef Joshua Ploeg (Plague) of Behead the Prophet, No Lord Shall Live/Mukilteo Fairies/Ravenna’s Secret Cafe presents 80 new and delicious, gourmet vegan recipes. Joshua is the epitome of the post-punk ethic manifest into his passion; traveling the country on buses and trains he presents gourmet dinner parties for you and your friends presented out of his backpack, circumventing the corporate route of disseminating his food, recipes, and love. This collection in particular is primarily spicy recipes and beverages (fire and ice, eh?) – blazing tofu, curried pineapple cream cheese, chicken yassa, garlic linguine, pineapple gazpacho with dates, blackeyed pea salsa, curried banana sandwiches, spicy basil turnip and tofu, iced tea with mango syrup, numerous alcoholic drink recipes, and much much more! A fun little foray into the world of punk rock’s gourmet chef!



Vegan With A Vengeance Book

by Isa Chandra Moskowitz

To appreciate this quirky vegan cookbook, readers must welcome the author’s offhand, rambling style. A chatty Brooklynite who hosts her own public access cooking show, she scatters stories about her mother, her friends and her politics among recipes for goodies like Fresh Corn Fritters and Curried Split Pea Soup. In one anecdote, she writes that her mother liked the scones from “one of those overpriced French cafes in Union Square,” prompting the author to create Glazed Orange scones in her mother’s honor, and the sweet, rich result rivals the average “overpriced café” model. BBQ Pomegranate Tofu is actually baked, not barbecued, but still the tofu is rich and smoky, terrific over rice or packed into heroes. Even better, the vegan iterations of Spanakopita and Seitan-Portobello Stroganoff so closely approximate the traditional versions that even the pickiest eaters would happily trade one for the other. And although there’s no chicken broth in Matzoh Ball Soup, the vegetable stock is hearty enough to cure the fiercest cold. Best of all, and rare in a vegan cookbook, the author provides several appealing dairy-free desserts that are tasty enough to fool most omnivores, yet unique enough to thrill any vegan who just can’t face another tofu ice cream bar. (Publisher’s Weekly)


Frugal Vegan’s Harvest and Holiday Survival Guide

by Lisa Van den Boomen

A gigantic cookbook from Montreal spilling over with exciting recipes for people without a lot of cash to thrown down. Recipes for food, non-food, and even gift ideas! Some articles have also been thrown in to help you through those winter months when you`re cold and broke! Get some tea, light up the fireplace, and start perusing the tasty treats in this informative zine!


How It All Vegan Book

by Tanya Barnard

Vegan recipes for such delights as bee pollen blue banana muffins, tofu jerky, vegan ice cream, chocolate cheese-free cake, and cosmetics, pet treats, even household cleaners. Pop culture friendly! I mean, look the front cover features tattooed 20-somethings!


Another Dinner is Possible

by Isy Morgenmuffel

A unique two-in-one cookbook and guide – featuring over 250 recipes of simple, cheap, and tasty food! Additional articles and guides set out to reconnect us with the food we eat, how food affects all levels of our lives, and how to better develop our relationship with what we eat! Recipes are designed to serve 2-6 people but also feature cooking for a large group and which recipes suitable for this. Printed on high quality glossy recycled paper and wire bound so it sits flat on your kitchen counter and the pages don’t deteriorate. Super illustrated by Isy Morgenmuffel and one of our coolest cookbooks! Originally imported from England, now published by AK Press.

Book List: Vegan Cookbooks and Cookzines! Part 1 of 3!

Hungry? We are too. Let’s fix that WITH A BOOK LIST! Vegan cookbooks and cookzines, without further adieu … 


In Search Of The Lost Taste

by Joshua Ploeg

Joshua Ploeg’s cooking blows my mind so much that a secret door opens in the back of my head and white doves, musical notes, and winged horses fly out. His cooking is transcendent: Dangerous, strange and perfect. It¹s full of colorful tastes that explode in your mouth like Pop Rocks ­flavor combinations you never thought possible. Crazy alchemy. Freaky magic. Joshua’s the Traveling Chef; you make an appointment, he shows up at your house with a load of groceries, makes an incredible multi-course vegan meal using your pots and pans, and then he’s gone like the Lone Ranger riding into a big Texas sunset. Joshua’s been in a bunch of hardcore bands and he brings all the good things punk rock gave us: risk, passion, creativity, and weirdness; then he applies them to his meals. I randomly lucked into one of his dinners last year. I usually eat really fast and mindlessly, but I had to take this one slow and let all the flavors develop and do their respective stuff. Each had its own distinctive note ­ its own voice that rang out to let it be known that it was something special and unique. It was an experience in the finest sense of the word.


Alt text

Homesweet Homegrown: How to Grow, Make, And Store Food, No Matter Where You Live

by Robyn Jasko

Robyn Jasko and Jennifer Biggs’ Homesweet Homegrown is self-described as “a simple DIY guide to growing, storing, and making your own food, no matter where you live.” An ideal companion to Raleigh Briggs’ DIY guide Make Your Place, Jasko and Biggs’ debut book will turn you into a healthy, happy farmer even if you live in a big city sky-rise. Based around eight comprehensive sections (Know, Start, Grow, Plant, Plan, Make, Eat, and Store), this wonderful 128-page guide takes you through all the steps of crop nurturing, and gives the goods for everyone from the base beginner to the well-seasoned farmhand. (The recipe section alone is enough to keep you comin’ back to this gem for years to come!) Narrated in a friendly, helpful tone by Jasko and held aloft by Biggs’ great illustrations, this book is the definition of awesomely useful. Super, super, SUPER inspiring. Grow your own!


Vegan Vittles-Second Helpings (New Edition!)

by Joanne` Stepeniak

In this expanded edition of the highly popular original, Jo Stepaniak has retained the book’s imaginative concepts and down-home appeal, while broadening many sections to cover a vast wealth of alternatives for every animal-based food under the sun. From homemade veggie “meats” and uncheeses to scrumptious egg and dairy substitutes, Vegan Vittles fills the whole table, and does so simply, tastefully, and creatively. Written in conjunction with staff members of Farm Sanctuary, North America’s oldest and largest farmed animal sanctuary and advocacy organization, Vegan Vittles provides valuable and timely information about modern “food animal” production, as well as constructive and effective actions that readers can take on behalf of these animals. The recipes are without pretense, ranging from hearty, home-style American, to ethnic and elegant. With over 100 exciting new recipes and clear, detailed instructions, Vegan Vittles is sure to inspire compassionate cooks of all ages, regardless of their comfort level in the kitchen.


Alt text


Viva Vegan!

by Terry Hope Romero

Viva Vegan! is the work of culinary genius Terry Hope Romero, coauthor of the best-selling cookbook, Veganomicon.  In this cookbook, Romero walks us through over 100 delicious Latin American recipes.  Upon owning Viva Vegan!, you will find yourself flipping it open on a daily basis to see what delectable dish you will prepare next.  Although Romero doesn’t sacrifice quality in the name of simplifying recipes, even the most complicated meals seem within reach without going out of your way to hunt down obscure ingredients or spending four hours in front of a stove.  This will go down as a classic in the vegan cookbook world.


Let Gluten-Freedom Ring! A Vegan, Gluten-Free Cookzine!

by Adam Gnade

It’s our first-ever GLUTEN-FREE COOKZINE! This 37-page vegan/gluten-free recipe zine features tasty guest contributions from Kittee Berns, Xerography Debt‘s Davida Gypsy Breier, Happy Thanksliving‘s Nathalie VanBalen, Taking the Lane‘s Elly Blue, Joe Biel, Megan Michelle, superstar vegan chef Joshua Ploeg, Laura Grant, Robin E. Osborne, Coleen Cata, Adam Gnade, and the multi-talented Rio Safari! Recipes include breakfast “sausages,” mac and cheese, Kittee’s “Occupies”, faux pho, sugar cookies, carrot cake, waffles, and many, many more! Make a meal for your gluten-free self. Make something sweet for that gluten-free friend of yours. Cut out wheat for a while just to see how your body handles it. Whatever you choose to do with Let Gluten-Freedom Ring, this easy-to-use, friendly, comfort-food-lovin’ zine is all about making the gluten-free diet not suck. NOTE: This zine’s second printing has an additional recipe from Green is the New Red‘s Will Potter!


Alt text


Vegan Brunch

by Isa Chandra Moskowitz

A good cookbook should be informative, but a great cookbook should be inspirational. And let’s just say I want to make everything in this book right this second. The entire book is in full color, with glossy photos of pancakes dripping with fruit and faux whipped cream, cherry sage “sausages” and the tofu benny, dripping with hollandaise sauce. This book contains 175 delicious-looking recipes. Please get this book, and make vegan brunch for your friends! (and invite us over too!)


Veganomicon: The Ultimate Vegan Cookbook

by Isa Chandra Moskowitz

Moskowitz and Romero’s newest delicious collection makes it easier than ever to live vegan. You’ll find more than 250 recipes—plus menus and stunning color photos—for dishes that will please every palate. All the recipes in Veganomicon have been thoroughly kitchen-tested to ensure user-friendliness and amazing results. And by popular demand, the Veganomiconincludes meals for all occasions and soy-free, gluten-free, and low-fat options, plus quick recipes that make dinner a snap. Recipes include:

Autumn Latkes, Samosa Stuffed Baked Potatoes, Grilled Yuca Tortillas, Baby Bok Choy with Crispy Shallots, Chile-Cornmeal Crusted Tofu Po’ Boy, Roasted Eggplant and Spinach Muffuletta, Jicama-Watercress-Avocado Salad with Spicy Citrus Vinaigrette, Acorn Squash, Pear and Adzuki Soup, Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti and Pumpkin Crumb Cake with Pecan Streusel.


Book List: 2012 Spring DIY Farm and Garden Books and Zines! (Part 3 of 3)

And now we proudly present our third and final list of books and zines on the subject of growing-your-own. The first is here and here’s the second. Thanks for reading! Oh, and if you do end up starting a garden or a farm or just growing some DIY bucket potatoes, send us pictures! We’d love to see them. Yo:


Fireweed: A Zine of Grassroots Radical Herbalism and Wild Foods Connecting With Kids and Family Life

by Jess Krueger

Fireweed, as the full title implies, is all about introducing your kids to plants. It’s about teaching young children the joy of gathering edibles, and making them into candies, teas, jellies, or even medicines. There’s tips for going on plant walks, and suggestions for good introductory plants like ginger, mint, and marshmallow. There are recipes for prickly pear crisp, catnip tea, and simple fermented herbal infusions. The authors conduct a couple interviews with parents about their experiences sharing plants with their children. Overall, this zine is really inspiring.


Alt text


Fireweed: A Zine of Grassroots Radical Herbalism and Wild Foods Connecting with Kids and Family Life, #2

by Jess Krueger

We are so incredibly stoked to have issue two of the Fireweed zine in stock! Like its subtitle says, Fireweed is about getting kids (and friends and your family) in touch with herbalism and wild plants in a radical sense. Issue two is a massive 67-page collection of essays and interviews, reviews and articles. Some of the features include: a piece on harvesting wild plants by Fireweed‘s editor, Jess; an article on the magic of chamomile; an interview with Herbal Feral Family; a piece on Magical Arts; a piece on the healing properties of plantains; advice on herbal baths; writing on doulas; Traci Picard’s “Holistic Support for the new mama in a scrubbled up world,” and much, much more! This zine is a real treasure trove of wisdom, advice, and inspiration for living a life closer to the land. We endorse Fireweed with a massive thumbs up!


Greenwoman #4

by Sandra Knauf

Greenwoman is a mother’s look at her life of family and gardening. A majority of the issue is a long well-written piece on raising chickens, with beautiful photos of her children holding the birds. It’s all the ups and downs that come along with raising animals, including untimely death. Sandra, the author, also spends alot of time thinking about her garden, the earth, and how to make it a better place for everyone. This includes more inclusive sex education for children, and less wasteful lawns. Spirited and opinionated, Sandra endeavors to share the dynamic experiences of her world.


Gardening When It Counts: Growing Food In Hard Times

by Steve Solomon

Gardening When It Counts helps readers rediscover traditional low-input gardening methods to produce healthy food. Designed for readers with no experience and applicable to most areas in the English-speaking world except the tropics and hot deserts, this book shows that any family with access to 3-5,000 sq. ft. of garden land can halve their food costs using a growing system requiring just the odd bucketful of household waste water, perhaps two hundred dollars worth of hand tools, and about the same amount spent on supplies – working an average of two hours a day during the growing season.


Alt text

Seeds: An Anthology of Comics About Food

by Offshore Comix

“Seeds” collects comics about food, from 18 different people. Some people address food production, like the harvesting of syrup, large scale agriculture, or where the meat you eat comes from. Others address the meaning of food in their lives. Includes comics by Matthew Reidsma of High Maintenance Machine zine, and Dan Archer of “What a Whopper” zine. This zine also comes with a free organic seed packet!


Guerrilla Gardening: A Manualfesto

by David Tracey

An introduction to guerrilla gardening that covers the basics. Where to plant, what to plant, and what to do if your urban garden meets resistance from local officials. “Guerrilla Gardening” helps you start from scratch as an excited future gardener. It also contains inspirational interviews with people who change the street-scape in a myriad of ways: From city planners to street artists, many different perspectives are explored!


Book List: 2012 Spring DIY Farm and Garden Books and Zines! (Part 2 of 3)

It’s the second installment of our DIY gardening/farm book/zine/DVD reading/watching list! For the first list click the blue here right here. Keep your eyes here for the third installment coming soon!

How and Why: A Do-it-yourself Guide

by Matte Resist

“I dream of a better world,” writes zinester and How and Why author Matte Resist in the intro to his new book. He continues, “To me DIY culture is about grabbing a little piece of that dream.” What follows over the course of the next 176 pages is Matte doing what all dreamers must do—waking up from his dream, opening his eyes, and confronting what roadblocks and hurdles lie between him and his goal. Matte does this by laying down chapter upon chapter of blueprints for a better world. A sequel to our do-it-yourself handbook Making Stuff and Doing Things, How and Why gives us detailed, engaging, easy-to-use info on bicycles, home and garage, gardening, educating children, musical instruments, and the all-inclusive “everything else” section. If you dream of taking back your life and building a better world, How and Why might be your new best friend.

Alt text

The Garden Cycles Bike Tour Presents: Faces From The New Farm

Liz Tylander, Lara Sheets and Kat Shiffler are the Garden Cycles Bike Tour. In the summer of 2007, these quirky ladies took off on bikes and filmed what would become a 35-minute film chronicling their 2,000 plus mile journey in search “the new American farmer”. From Washington, DC to Montreal and back, the trio interview enthusiastic gardeners in urban areas, youth involved in food justice, new immigrant farmers and a new generation of back-to-the-landers. The film features The Food Project, Nuestras Raices, The Germantown Community Farm, The Intervale Center, and many others redefining the word “farmer”. This is a great film for anyone interested in grassroots food and farming initiatives or do-it-yourself film projects and bike adventures.


The Backyard Homestead

by Carleen Madigan

With just a quarter acre of land, you can feed a family of four with fresh, organic food year-round. This comprehensive guide to self-sufficiency has all the information you need to grow and preserve vegetables, fruits, herbs, nuts, and grains; raise chickens for eggs and meat; raise cows, sheep, and goats for meat or milk; raise pigs and rabbits; and keep honey bees. Simple instructions make it easy to enjoy canned, frozen, dried, and pickled produce all winter; use your own grains to make bread, pasta, and beer; turn fresh milk into delicious homemade yogurt, butter, and cheese; make your own wine, cordials, and herbal teas; and much, much more. It truly is possible to eat entirely from your backyard.


fix it, make it, grow it, bake it: The D.I.Y. Guide to the Good Life

by Billee Sharp

Fix It, Make It, Grow It, Bake It is an inspiring and instructive guide to living the handmade life by consuming less and creating more. Practical and profound, this handy how-to covers every area of life and offers easy-to-do tips, recipes, and advice on saving money and the planet. You and your family can live more joyfully and far more creatively, all on a dime. The best things in life are free — or if they aren’t, you can have a lot of fun making them. Learn how to: Ditch the lawn and raise organic veggies; cook healthy meals for pennies; eco-clean your house with lemons and lavender; cure minor maladies from the kitchen cabinet; join a seed sharing community garden; save big dollars with small repairs; organize a free market; put the “happy” back in your holidays; and more.


Alt text

Greenwoman #6

by Sandra Knauf

Sandra is a “greenwoman” who loves to garden. She confesses her thumb could be greener, but she’s obviously passionate for plants. In this issue, her daughter turns 18 and graduates high school. Other changes include a greater focus on gardening in her town of Colorado Springs. The failing economy motivates alot more residents to try their hand at growing vegetables. Sandra also educates us about garlic, and writes a love letter to her stove. Contributor Pat Gulya attends a food pantry and weighs in on the experience, and Becky Elder writes a sweet ode to her garden.


The Urban Homestead: Your Guide to Self-Sufficient Living in the Heart of the City

by Kelly Coyne

The Urban Homestead is the essential handbook for a fast-growing new movement: urbanites are becoming gardeners and farmers. By growing their own food and harnessing natural energy, they are planting seeds for the future of our cities.

If you would like to harvest your own vegetables, make homemade jam or bread, raise chickens or convert to solar energy, this practical, hands-on book is full of step-by-step projects that will get you started homesteading immediately, whether you live in an apartment or a house. It is also a guidebook to the larger movement and will point you to the best books and Internet resources on self-sufficiency topics.


Alt text


Radical Mycology

by SLF

There’s a fungus-among-us…in the form of Radical Mycology zine! This zine is a mushroom primer, focused mostly on the Pacific Northwest, and contains a wild mushroom identification guide. This is a good time to point out that you should be very careful with wild edibles always! And you should not eat anything you can’t positively ID!! Moving on, this zine is a hefty one. Besides profiles on 11 different mushrooms, it contains info on medicinals, cultivation, making mushroom dyes and paper, bioremediation using mushrooms, and a little history on psilocybin-containing mushrooms. There are even mushroom jokes. This zine is really well put together.

Alt text

Book List: 2012 Spring DIY Farm and Garden Books and Zines! (Part 1 of 3)

Here at Microcosm we are super grow-your-own friendly (in fact, half of us live on a farm). In the name of making the world a better place we wholly advise growing the things you eat. (Or at least as much as you can.) In that spirit, here’s our list of books and zines that are mega helpful if you’re planning on doing any sort of DIY farm and garden stuff this year! Stay tuned for part two of this list later on in the week!


Homesweet Homegrown: How to Grow, Make, And Store Food, No Matter Where You Live

Robyn Jasko and Jennifer Biggs’ Homesweet Homegrown is self-described as “a simple DIY guide to growing, storing, and making your own food, no matter where you live.” An ideal companion to Raleigh Briggs’ DIY guide Make Your Place, Jasko and Biggs’ debut book will turn you into a healthy, happy farmer even if you live in a big city sky-rise. Based around eight comprehensive sections (Know, Start, Grow, Plant, Plan, Make, Eat, and Store), this wonderful 128-page guide takes you through all the steps of crop nurturing, and gives the goods for everyone from the base beginner to the well-seasoned farmhand. (The recipe section alone is enough to keep you comin’ back to this gem for years to come!) Narrated in a friendly, helpful tone by Jasko and held aloft by Biggs’ great illustrations, this book is the definition of awesomely useful. Super, super, SUPER inspiring. Grow your own!


Home Composting Made Easy

Alt text

This is apparently the world’s most popular compost guide! It’s a little zine with step by step instructions and answers to your most common questions, such as Why should I compost in the first place? Can I include manure? And how exactly does one go about vermicomposting? This zine is bright, colorful, and accessible for anyone and everyone who has an interest in creating less waste.


Growing Stuff

A vibrant and quirky guide for anyone wishing to transform their minimal outdoor space. With easy-to-follow instructions on the basics of growing flowers, herbs, vegetables and more, Growing Stuff provides an excellent introduction to the world of horticulture. A wide selection of creative ‘recipes’ will help you take growing plants to the next level by making use of them with craft and culinary projects. The book shows you that things can be grown in even the most unexpected places, and with minimum prior knowledge or skill. Written in an engaging and informal way, the book is an ideal introduction to green-fingered activity, and is sure to convert even wary or novice gardeners to this creative and wide-ranging practice.


Notes for Building a Hearty Inner-City Community High Tunnel

Wow, this one is somethin’ special! The full-size Notes for Building a Hearty Inner-City Community High Tunnel gives the goods on building an unheated greenhouse called a “high tunnel.” (Says Bill in the zine’s intro, “This is a small community project for experienced food growers who want an affordable way to extend warm seasons.”) In easy, illustrated (comic book style) steps Bill and Max Konrardy lay out the tools and supplies you’re going to need; the design principles; a guide on making a correct angle; visualization of your project; team and material gathering; layout and leveling, and much more. All of this is done in a friendly, accessible way (i.e. you don’t have to be a master builder to do this.) The Konrardies’ plans will have you up and running and to the final, finished stages for less than $1,000 (these things are generally staggeringly expensive.) This zine is incredibly inspiring, well-illustrated, and really fun to thumb through. Much recommended! Note: see an inside look at this zine’s pages over at our blog.

Alt text


Czech One Two #1

Daniel’s personal zine about working on an organic farm. He’s quick to dispel myths of idyll earth tending, and confesses that it is hard backbreaking work. His home is a barn in Virginia, and his bosses yell at him until he has tears in his beard. But it’s not all terrible. Daniel still gets nostalgic for rural life from time to time. He misses being outside 12 hours a day, and all his fellow workers. Czech One Two is a realistic look at the often romanticized job of organic farming.


Guest Blog #3 Homesweet Homegrown’s Robyn Jasko’s Easy, Amazing 20 Minute Tomato Sauce

I’m always amazed at the simplicity of this recipe, and that it can be on the table in a quick 20. Cooking or roasting your tomatoes this way really intensifies their flavor, making it a velvety rich sauce that’s packed with good stuff. 

It’s also a great way to use all those cherry tomatoes. No need to skin and seed, just an immersion blender will make short work of all them.


  • A shoebox worth of homegrown tomatoes
  • olive oil
  • garlic
  • onion
  • salt
  • pepper
  • basil
  • lemon juice (for canning)
  • hot pepper (optional)

  Alt text

To make this sauce:

In a large pot on high heat, add a pinch of salt, let it warm up, then add the olive oil. Once fully heated, add onions and garlic until wilted. Then, add tomatoes, all of them, at once. Put on the lid and do something else for 20 minutes while it cooks down. 

Once it’s boiling and the tomatoes are soft, use an immersion blender to turn this into sauce. Cook down longer if you want a thicker sauce, or serve right away. 

This sauce is a great base. If you want to make it a puttnesca, add olives and capers; if you want to make it spicy, add a habanero. It’s all up to you. 

To can this sauce:

Sterilize canning jars and squeeze half a lemon’s juice into them. Add sauce, and boil water bath for 45 minutes. Try not to eat it until it’s cold outside because it will be so good then!



Alt text

Originally posted at Check out Robyn Jasko and Jennifer Biggs’ book Homesweet Homegrown right here.

Alt text

Guest Blog #2 Homesweet Homegrown’s Robyn Jasko on How to Grow Asparagus!

Days to Harvest: 2 to 3 years after initial planting. Perennial, harvest early spring through early June.

Light: Sunny.

Temperature: Cold season, 60° to 65° F is ideal.

Companions: Dill, coriander, tomatoes, parsley, basil, comfrey and marigolds.

Avoid Planting Near: Onion, garlic and potatoes.

Preparation: Asparagus is a perennial vegetable that lives 12 to 15 years or longer. Prepare bed for initial planting as early as possible. Double-dig bed and enrich with compost. Then, dig 12-inch deep trenches, 12 to 18 inches wide, with 4 to 5 feet between trenches.

Alt text

Planting: Plant one year crowns in early spring. Set plants 15 to 18 inches apart, mounding soil slightly under each plant so crown is slightly above roots. Spread roots over mound and cover crown with 2 to 3 inches soil. As plants grow, continue to put soil over crowns (about 2 inches every 2 weeks) until trench is filled.

Spacing: 18 inches between plants, 3 feet between rows.

Water: A flush of spears often follows a soaking rain.

Harvest:  Spears should not be harvested the first season after crowns set. Harvest lightly for 3 to 4 weeks the second year. In the fourth season, harvest 8 to 10 weeks a year. Harvest spears just under soil surface when 6 to 8 inches tall and before tips separate.

Tips: Asparagus does well where winters are cool and the soil occasionally freezes a few inches deep.

Alt text

Originally posted at Check out Robyn Jasko and Jennifer Biggs’ book Homesweet Homegrown right here.

Alt text

Guest Blog from Homesweet Homegrown’s Robyn Jasko! Create your Own Seedling Pots with Newspaper

After your seeds have started, these easy-to-make newspaper pots are perfect for transplanting your new seedlings. Forget pricey plastic sets and excess pots—-all you need is some extra newspaper and a small cup or mason jar and you are on your way.

Since the newspaper will decompose naturally, you can then plant these right into the garden.

Here’s how to make your own newspaper pots in 6 easy steps:

Step 1.


Alt text

Cut sheets of black and white newspaper in half or thirds, depending on the size of pot you want to make. Make sure not to use pages with color, since this will be going directly into your garden. (Color newspapers may contain heavy metals that are unsafe).

Step 2.

Alt text

Align your mason jar or cup with the newspaper so that a few inches of paper are above the opening of the cup. Roll the newspaper so it circles the cup.

Step 3.

Alt text

Push the sides of the paper that are above the cup opening inside, so they are wrapped around the lip of the cup.

Step 4.

Alt text

Remove the cup gently, while still keeping the pot’s shape.

Step 5.

Alt text


Use the bottom of the cup to reinforce the pot’s bottom by inserting it inside the newspaper pot. Tamp down the inverted ends, so it seals the bottom.

Here’s what it should look like after it’s done:

Alt text

Step 6.

Alt text

Add soil and transplant or start your seedlings.

When they reach the size for transplanting outside, they can be placed directly into your garden. This will also alleviate root disruption for healthy, happy seedlings!

Note: originally posted at Find Homesweet Homegrown right here.

Alt text

Zine Excerpt: Will Potter’s Vegan Cornbread Recipe from Let Gluten-Freedom Ring!

Note: Let Gluten-Freedom Ring! A Vegan, Gluten-Free Cookzine is available right here.


Fast and easy and not a lot to clean up, which is the holy trinity of cooking in my book. The key ingredient here is the cast iron skillet. You can pick one up pretty cheap, or I bet you’ve got a family member hiding a couple in their cabinets. My favorite skillet for cornbread is about 12” diameter, with 3” walls. It’s nice if it has an extra grip, because those things are heavy coming out of the oven.

Preheat oven to 425.
Rub some vegetable oil inside the skillet (all surfaces) and then put the skillet in the oven for about 10 minutes. Let it get good and hot, as you mix all this together in a bowl:

1 1/2 c cornmeal
1 1/2 c flour (for gluten-free, I like the Red Mill brand but whatever)
3 1/2 tsp b powder
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 tbs sugar
2 1/4 c soymilk (or, I prefer almond milk)
1/4 c vegetable oil
1 c jalapenos chopped, plus some green chilis (both optional)

Mix all the dry. Stir in the wet until it’s as smooth as you can get it. If it’s too thick add a bit more milk. Pull the skillet out of the oven (be careful!). Pour your batter in, then put it right back in the oven. Bake it for about 35-45 minutes. It should start to pull away from the sides, and crack at the top, when it is almost done (if you’ve oiled it and let it heat up). This is a bit tricky, but you want to flip the skillet over on top of a cutting board and the cornbread should thud out in one piece. Let it cool, put some vegan margarine on there, and now you’re in business. If you want to get extra Texan have a piece or two for breakfast with your coffee.

PS: You’re not gonna use any soap on your cast iron, are you? Good. That’s bad for the skillet. Wipe it out with a paper towel, then rub a thin layer of oil over it before you store it. Keep doing that each time you use it, and it will have a natural “non-stick” finish.

Alt text