Peninsula Macrobiotic Network Newsletter  
Number 138 October / November 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
     Join the fun at the Gourmet Vegetarian Dinners in Palo Alto

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
Saturday, October 3 - Sunday, October 4
10th Annual World Vegetarian Festival Weekend, San Francisco County Fair Building, Golden Gate Park. Information:
Monday, October 5
Verne Varona speaks on Macrobiotics for Dummies—A 21st Century Multi-Cultural Approach Toward Body, Mind & Spirit Health.
Monday, November 16
Marlene Marcello speaks on Radiant Healing from the Inside Out.
Monday, November 23
Thanksgiving Theme Dinner. Early reservations advised!
Monday, November 30
Dr. Lawrence Kushi speaks on Dietary Prevention and Management of Cancer and Other Chronic Diseases.
News and Announcements
On November 30 at 8 pm, Dr. Lawrence Kushi will speak on Dietary Prevention and Management of Cancer and Other Chronic Diseases. For the location of the lecture, see the sidebar at left. For a description of the presentation, click here.

What to cook for the coming holidays? Chef Gary Alinder has posted 101 Menu Ideas for Thanksgiving and the Winter Holidays on his blog, He has also posted a recipe archive, including soups; main dishes; sauces, gravies, and dressings; and desserts and snacks. Gary's blog also showcases his views on a variety of subjects, all very entertaining and informative.

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.

Every Monday night, a collaborative miracle takes place in Palo Alto! Besides healthful and delicious food, each Gourmet Vegetarian Dinner provides networking in a vibrant community, support for those seeking a healthier lifestyle or dealing with a serious condition, education in macrobiotic and other health areas, and a firsthand taste of The Great Life. We have found a formula which has produced magic for 22-1/2 years now!

Your help is needed to support our organization. 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. See From The Editor for details on contributing by mail. Donations, including $10 amounts to support the newsletter, are tax-deductible, as the PMC is a nonprofit. (Have a fundraising idea? Share it with any Board member.)

Senior macrobiotic teacher Verne Varona will be available for health consultations on Tuesday, October 6. From Verne: "My sessions are designed to cover the client's goals and bring about desired immediate changes in a practical way that doesn't turn their lifestyle upside down or keep them kitchen prisoners! Sessions include extensive visual evaluation and a body, mind and spirit approach. Since sessions tend to fill up fairly quickly, I'd recommend that reservations be made by email, which would, for advanced scheduling, be the best way to assure a guaranteed reservation, since I can only do a limited amount of them. Consultations are very comprehensive and all entail telephone follow-up for 4 to 6 weeks. This kind of monitoring allows me to do more personalized work and effectively work." For information or appointments, .

Chef Gary Alinder has started a blog at Tune into Gary's views on a variety of subjects including food and health, and leave your comments!

Monthly Vegan Potlucks! The Peninsula Veggie Potluck People, a spinoff of the Monday Dinners, sponsor monthly vegan potlucks; for details, visit To host a potluck, call Diane Wohler at 650 704-0669, or Harold Stephenson at 650 856-1125.

The North Bay Macrobiotic Potluck Group usually meets the first Sunday of each month in Santa Rosa, contact Stephen Starkweather ( ), 707 542-9739,
Thanksgiving Celebration!
November 23, 2009
Sparkling Punch

Savory Sage Soup Broth

Bread Basket with
Miso Tahini Spread

Tempeh Vegetable Cutlets with
Mushroom Gravy

Corn Bread Stuffing

Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Green Bean Casserole

Salad Served Family Style

Orange Ginger Cranberry Sauce

"Mince Meat" Pie with
Tofu Crème

Assorted Teas

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.

Marin-based cookbook author, lecturer, and macrobiotic food coach Meredith McCarty teaches Tuesday cooking classes: Italian Dinner Party on October 13 and Autumn Comforts Dinner on November 10; 6:30-8:30 PM, Redwood High School, Room 120, 395 Doherty Dr., Larkspur, $50/class. Also, she will do Thursday lectures: Healing Meals for Cancer Prevention & Recovery on October 15 and Healing Foods for Diabetes Prevention & Recovery on November 12; 6:30-8 PM, Tamalpais High School, Wood Hall 148, 700 Miller Ave. at Camino Alto, Mill Valley, $25/lecture. Register for cooking classes or lectures at or call 415 945-3730. For more information, call 415 272-5525 or visit

Macrobiotic Health Counselor Michelle Nemer, based in El Cerrito, teaches a variety of seasonal cooking classes on the following Saturdays: October 10, 17, 24; November 7, 14; December 5, 12. 1-4 PM in Kensington, $40/class. She also teaches The Power of Foods workshop series consisting of 11 classes in Albany, running from September 17 - December 17, Thursday nights, 7-9:30 PM, $35/class. For details, email or call 510 527-4367.

Macrobiotic Counselor Julie Ong teaches personal macrobiotic cooking classes and does macrobiotic consultations in San Francisco; call 415 312-0241.
We all have the means to bestow on others the most lavish gifts; love, joy, peace, hope, kindness, acceptance, encouragement, laughter, forgiveness, time. There is not enough money to buy them and not too little money to give them. The more you spend, the wealthier you become; yet nothing will cost you more than what you freely possess to give.
Eden Eliot
The essence of all beautiful art, all great art, is gratitude.
Friedrich Nietzsche
After-Dinner Events
Speakers receive a gratuity from the audience; please show your support and appreciation with a donation ($5-10 suggested).

For many of us, macrobiotics is a challenging subject to learn and apply. Those of us interested in health often run into a problem: how do we translate the broad, philosophical principles of macrobiotics into specific dietary recommendations and other actions that we can practically apply in our daily lives?

Join us on October 5, when senior teacher of macrobiotics Verne Varona will speak on Macrobiotics for Dummies—A 21st Century Multi-Cultural Approach Toward Body, Mind & Spirit Health. He is the author of the new book Macrobiotics for Dummies and the best selling Nature's Cancer-Fighting Foods. Verne will illustrate some applications of macrobiotics by sharing some of his recent activities: a project to reverse disease through diet, where a group of patients will be monitored by physicians (to be filmed in a feature-length documentary that Verne is producing and directing); and his recent talks with a large spiritual organization in India about adapting a macrobiotically oriented diet for the Indian nation. This will be an interactive session, so bring your questions—Verne will help you develop specific recommendations, dietary and others, for your needs. Expect an informative and very entertaining presentation (punctuated by hilarious impressions) by one of the most popular and dynamic speakers on the health circuit today. Don't miss this!
On November 16, cancer survivor and author Marlene Marcello will speak on Radiant Healing from the Inside Out. (This event was scheduled after publication of the printed newsletter.) More than twenty years ago, Marlene was diagnosed with malignant melanoma; after three rounds of surgeries, she was given less than a year to live. But she worked tirelessly to heal herself using alternative therapies including macrobiotics. Her strict regimen worked, and her cancer went into remission.

Marlene will use her personal healing journey as an example of how a healing diet, mental and emotional exercises and spiritual practices can play a powerful role in the healing process. Her focus will be on specific foods that cleanse through plant-based nutrition; stress-reduction techniques and suggested healthy living tips; and meditations and readings to improve inner peace and relationships. Participants will receive a radiant healing booklet.

Marlene has dedicated herself to educating others on the benefits of holistic health and nutrition programs. She has five children--the last, Joseph, conceived within two years of her terminal diagnosis. He was born healthy and is currently attending college. Visit her website

On November 30, Dr. Lawrence Kushi will speak on Dietary Prevention and Management of Cancer and Other Chronic Diseases. His presentation will include macrobiotics and cancer, and will be interactive—bring your questions. Lawrence H. Kushi, Sc.D., is the Associate Director for Etiology and Prevention Research, Division of Research, Kaiser Permanente Northern California. His research interests have focused on the role of food and nutrition in the development, prevention, and prognosis of chronic diseases, including breast and other cancers.

Dr. Kushi is currently the Principal Investigator of two NIH-funded prospective cohort studies. One is examining the role of genetic and environmental factors in the development of early puberty in 444 girls. The other is examining lifestyle and genetic factors in breast cancer prognosis, and is enrolling and following the experience of women with breast cancer; over 2,800 women have enrolled in this study.

Dr. Kushi is a graduate of Amherst College and the Harvard School of Public Health, and has held research and faculty positions at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, the University of Washington, the University of Minnesota, and Teachers College of Columbia University, where he was the Ella McCollum Vahlteich Professor of Human Nutrition.

He is the son of Michio and Aveline Kushi, who came to the United States after studying macrobiotics with George Ohsawa. They have been prominent in working for peace and spreading macrobiotics worldwide, through their teaching and writing of numerous books.
Millet, Butternut Squash, and Corn Cakes
Millet is a very versatile grain with a sweet, nutty flavor that goes exceptionally well with squash. Traditional Chinese Medicine recommends millet for problems of blood sugar and the pancreas. You can make fresh millet for this recipe or use leftover millet by simply steaming it and allowing it to cool.

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 35 to 40 minutes

Yield: 4 servings
  • 1 cup millet
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 2 cups peeled and diced butternut squash
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • ½ cup cooked corn
  • 2-1/2 cups water
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • ½ cup fresh chopped cilantro
1. After washing and rinsing the millet, dry roast the millet in a large skillet over medium heat for about 4 minutes. Stir constantly until the millet starts to pop.

2. Remove the millet from the skillet, and set aside.

3. Toast the mustard seeds and curry powder in the skillet over medium heat for 1 to 2 minutes until they're aromatic.

4. Mix the millet, mustard seeds, squash, ginger, corn, water, and sea salt in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat.

5. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 25 minutes or until the millet has absorbed all the water.

6. Remove the pan from the heat. When the mixture is cool, add the cilantro.

7. Wet your hands and blend the mixture to a uniform consistency. Form the mixture into 12 cakes and grill for approximately 3 minutes on each side, or until golden. Alternatively, dust the cakes with a coating of flour, heat a tablespoon of oil into a skillet and lightly fry for 3-4 minutes each side.

8. Serve hot.

From Macrobiotics for Dummies by Verne Varona
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.

Back Issues of the Newsletter and Menus: Click here.

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