Peninsula Macrobiotic Network Newsletter  
Number 133 December 2008 / January 2009 Peninsula Macrobiotic Community

to the
of the
Peninsula Macrobiotic Community
in Palo Alto,

For information on our organization, click on About Us.

green onions
     Scenes from the Gourmet Vegetarian Dinners in Palo Alto
Scenes from the Gourmet Vegetarian Dinners in Palo Alto, clockwise from upper left: Dr. Samia McCully speaks on Food Sensitivities; Lawrence and Gabriele Kushi with some attendees of Gabriele's lecture on Sugar Blues; Barb Jurecki-Humphrey shows her Feng Shui vision board; Eron serves a beautiful dinner plate.
How do I attend the Gourmet Vegetarian Dinners?
Chef Gary Alinder, since 1987
Every Monday, 6:30 PM
First Baptist Church, Palo Alto
305 North California Avenue
at Bryant
1/4 mile East of Alma
Sit Down or Take-out, $15
Reservations Requested:
Call 650 599-3320 by
Monday 9:30 AM.
Open to everyone. Communal seating--new people easily integrate into our friendly group, which includes many singles. Make new friends on Mondays!

Coming Events
Monday, December 15
Laura Stec speaks on Cool Cuisine for the Holidays and the Planet.
Monday, December 22
No Dinner, Happy Holidays!
Monday, December 29
No Dinner, Happy Holidays!
Monday, January 12
Esther Gokhale speaks on Posture: The Missing Keystone of Health.

News and Announcements
Make a date with a friend to meet at a Monday Dinner, or come by yourself and make new friends! Either way, you'll get a great meal and a lot more--everyone wins!

Help publicize the Monday Dinners! An easy way to spread the word about our weekly community gathering is to click on the Tell-A-Friend link in the upper left of this page. Just fill out the form with the email addresses of up to two friends, along with any personal comments you'd like to add, and click Submit--this emails your comments along with pre-written details of the Dinners and a link to this website!

Another way to help is to post a copy of our Dinner Menus in public locations. For a pdf file suitable for printing, click here.

Best Wishes for a Safe and Happy Holiday Season, and a Happy New Year! Dinner will not be served on Dec 22 and Dec 29.

Thank you to those who have contributed to our Fundraising Drive. If you have not yet contributed, your help is needed--donations to the Peninsula Macrobiotic Community (PMC) are accepted in any amount. $10/year is suggested to support the newsletter; larger amounts are applied to both the newsletter and other expenses, primarily insurance, and will also give us additional operating flexibility to handle rising costs. To contribute, write checks to "Peninsula Macrobiotic Community", and mail to Gerard Lum, 101 E. Middlefield Road #9, Mountain View, CA 94043, or drop off at the Monday Dinner. Donations, including $10 amounts to support the newsletter, are tax-deductible, as the PMC is a nonprofit organization.

Monthly Vegan Potlucks! The Peninsula Veggie Potluck People, a spinoff of the Monday Dinners, sponsor monthly vegan potlucks. For the dates and locations of upcoming potlucks, visit or call Diane Wohler at 650 704-0669, or Harold Stephenson at 650 856-1125. Hosts needed!

The North Bay Macrobiotic Potluck Group usually meets the first Sunday of each month in Santa Rosa, contact Stephen Starkweather (), 707 542-9739,
Winter Solstice Celebration!
December 15, 2008
Warm Spiced Apple Cider

Gingery Kabocha Squash Soup

Tempeh Stroganoff Stew

Whole Grain Bruschetta with Parsley Pesto

Quinoa Pilaf with
Roasted Chestnuts

Sautéed Collards and Kale with Fennel and Red Cabbage

Winter Greens Salad with Local Persimmons and Walnuts

Cranberry Orange Spice Cake

Choice of Teas and Grain Coffee

$18 Sitdown, $16 Takeout

More Dinner Menus...

Cooking and Classes
James Holloway, frequent Guest Chef at the Monday Dinners, does personal home cooking in Palo Alto, in macrobiotic and classical styles, call 650 852-9182.

Dinner Manager Miklane Janner will teach a cooking class, Eat for Health: A Fun, Delicious and Easy Way of Cooking on Saturday, January 17. In Miklane's words, "I have been following an organic, whole foods plan for almost 30 years. My specialty is cooking fast and delicious food, with easy clean up. In this class I will demonstrate my favorite ways to cook and flavor grains, tofu, beans, and vegetables. I will show you a few key ingredients that will make your food taste great. We will find delight in food for every meal of the day!" 10:30 am - 12:30 pm, includes lunch, $40, at the First Baptist Church. To reserve, call 510 704-0287.

Marin-based cookbook author, lecturer, and macrobiotic food coach Meredith McCarty teaches a New Year's Resolution Cooking Class, Tuesday Jan. 13, 6:30-8:30 pm, Redwood High School 120/Staff Lounge, 395 Doherty Dr., Larkspur, CA, $50. She also gives a lecture on Diet & Healthy Aging, Thursday Jan. 15, 6:30-8:00 pm, Tamalpais High School, Room 151, Mill Valley, $25. To register, visit or call 415 945-3730. For information, visit or call 415 381-1735.

Macrobiotic Health Counselor Michelle Nemer, based in El Cerrito, hosts a monthly Macrobiotic Study and Support Group in Kensington from 7-9 pm on Dec 11, $5/session. She also teaches a macrobiotic cooking class in Kensington from 1:30-4:30 pm on Dec 13, $45/class. For information, call 510 527-4367 or email .

Also, Michelle will offer extended study programs beginning February 2009:
  • Nourishing the Feminine
  • Traditional Asian Diagnosis and Food Energetics Intensive
  • The Earth Cafe and Inner Ecology Program at Commonweal Farm and Garden in coastal Bolinas, CA, see
Macrobiotic Chef Julie Ong teaches a macrobiotic cooking class Edible Energy - Winter Menu on Saturday, December 13 at Manzanita Restaurant, 4001 Linden St (at 40th), Oakland, 3-5:30 pm, $50 includes dinner, call 415 312-0241 to register, visit for information. She also hosts a potluck in San Francisco on the second Wednesday of each month.
After-Dinner Events
Speakers receive a gratuity from the audience; please show your support and appreciation with a donation ($5-10 suggested).

One of the most positive effects we can have on the environment begins on our dinner plate, but climate is far from the only reason to eat food that supports small family farms, sustainable agriculture, and traditional animal husbandry. We eat this way because it benefits our communities and brings us closer together. It also gives us tastier and healthier food. By incorporating more of it into our diets, we may even come to understand that growing and cooking food is a loving act and that the most satisfying dishes are those prepared with love.
From Cool Cuisine: Taking the Bite Out of Global Warming
by Laura Stec and Dr. Eugene Cordero
On December 15, Chef and Caterer Laura Stec will speak on Cool Cuisine for the Holidays and the Planet. With a growing awareness of how food choices affect the environment, and the emphasis on food during the holiday season-what should we serve at our holiday feast? We'll explore this topic with a festive presentation by chef and author Laura Stec. On the heels of her and Dr. Eugene Cordero's recently released book-Cool Cuisine: Taking the Bite Out of Global Warming-Laura asks whether a vegetarian world is the next best thing after "peace on earth, good will to all," or if this perspective is inherently flawed. We'll compare carbon footprints of holiday veggie and non-veggie meals (such as Tofu Turkey vs. Prime Rib), learn tips for green dinner parties, share favorite vegan holiday recipes and sample her new Christmas cookie recipe, Cherry Chocolate Nib Walnut Cookies. Bring your favorite seasonal recipe to share and come ready to debate! Laura will bring copies of her beautiful new book, Cool Cuisine, which make wonderful holiday gifts!

Laura Stec is a classically trained chef and caterer with more than 25 years of experience, specializing in seasonal, local, organic, and whole (SLOW) foods. Laura trained at the Culinary Institute of America, the School of Natural Cookery, and the Vega Macrobiotic Center. She has worked at Bay Area restaurants, taught at cooking schools, and is a Culinary Health Educator for the weight loss, Lifestyles, and other programs at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center. Laura offers a unique perspective on the role our diets play in personal and planetary health, and enjoys turning students on to the artistry and energetics of healthy cooking. For more on Laura, visit

On January 12, Esther Gokhale will speak on Posture: The Missing Keystone of Health. Like any structure, the human body will function superbly if used in ways compatible with its design. Alignment of the bones, particularly of the spinal vertebrae, affects every system of the body--nerves, organs and muscles. Proper alignment produces good blood circulation, deep, even breathing, relaxed muscles, and good digestion. For the inhabitant of a properly functioning body, these combine to produce many benefits including sharp attention, dynamic athletic performance, and accelerated healing.

Unfortunately, due to myths about what good posture is, the lack of good models, fashionable slouching, and poorly designed furniture, we easily fall out of using our bodies properly. A body out of alignment no longer functions the way it was designed to. Since the early 20th century, back pain has become almost epidemic in America, along with other chronic functional problems such as carpal tunnel syndrome.

After developing crippling back pain herself, followed by unsuccessful surgery, Esther Gokhale resolved to find a solution. She observed children and did research among indigenous peoples. Her findings are the basis of the Gokhale Method, a simple, safe, and effective means to restore health to the spine and the rest of the body. Her book, 8 Steps to a Pain-Free Back, was recently named a Book of the Month Club selection.

Esther is the real thing - a healer and teacher with extraordinary knowledge and talent.
Mark Tuschman, photographer, Menlo Park
In her talk, Esther will discuss the background of the current epidemic of back problems, describe the characteristics of good posture, and teach participants at least one exercise to restore or maintain the natural curvature of their spines--thus helping people with back pain to relieve it, and showing everyone else how to avoid it.

Esther also studied biochemistry at Harvard and Princeton, and acupuncture at the San Francisco School of Oriental Medicine. She teaches at the Esther Gokhale Wellness Center in Palo Alto. Visit her very informative website at   
Cherry, Chocolate Nib, Walnut Cookies
Makes 16

  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • ½ cup barley flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup real maple syrup
  • ¼ cup almond or walnut butter
  • ¼ cup cherry juice
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons chocolate nibs
  • ¼ cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • ¼ cup dried cherries, cut in half or quarters, depending on the size
Preheat over to 350F. Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl, flour - salt. In a medium size bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients, maple syrup - vanilla, making sure the nut butter is well combined. Add in the nibs, walnuts and cherries and stir. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix only until combined. Do not over mix. Drop by heaping tablespoon onto cookie sheet that has been sprayed with a light coat of oil, or onto a reusable piece of parchment paper called a Silpat. Bake 12 - 15 minutes until lightly browned on the bottom.

by Laura Stec
Community Connection
From the Editor
Email Notification of Newsletter: To receive an email notification each time the Newsletter and Dinner Menus are published on this site (every two months), .
Mailing List Policy: To get a printed copy of the Newsletter and Dinner Menus delivered by postal mail, or call the phone number below. To offset the expense of producing the Newsletter and Menus, we suggest a contribution of $10/year or more. The date and amount of your last newsletter contribution appears on your mailing label. Write checks to "Peninsula Macrobiotic Community", and mail to Gerard Lum, 101 E. Middlefield Road #9, Mountain View, CA 94043, 650 903-0447.

We periodically review our mailing list. Those who have not made a recent contribution are subject to removal.

Tax-Deductible Contributions: We welcome and can use additional contributions to the Peninsula Macrobiotic Community, as income from the Dinners does not pay all of our expenses. We are a nonprofit organization, so additional contributions are fully tax-deductible. Send contributions to the address in Mailing List Policy above.

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