If Loving Michael Pollen is Wrong. I Don’t Want to be Right.


I’ve had a longtime, not-so-secret, intellectual school girl crush on author and professor, Michael Pollan, since I first read his book The Omnivores Dilemma back in 2010. From there I went on to read most of his books and seek out any information he was publishing or documentary specials in which he was appearing.  He became my food policy and agriculture go-to guy and I cannot lie, I was completely smitten.My admiration for Pollan is fueled by his amazing ability to truly inspire a more conscious effort in making better choices when it comes to the food I eat, cook, grow and purchase. His recommendation to “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” has become the mantra of so many clean eating groupies and Localvores that I’m shocked we’re not all wearing t-shirts with his face on it. And now after several best-selling books, interviews in documentaries such as Food Inc. and a plethora of speaking engagements Pollan has teamed up with Netflix to bring us a four part documentary based on his book Cooked.

explores four classical elements of cooking: fire, water, air and earth. With these tools, humans can transform ingredients into delicious foods like bread, stews and chocolate. But in true Pollan fashion he not only explores what we can accomplish in our own kitchen, he reminds us of the tradition and history of these foods, their methods of preparation and the importance of our personal connection to cooking them. We cannot forget that real food, the kind of food that sustains and nourishes us, is prepared with real human hands.  This is the one true and common factor no matter what dietary preference or culinary heritage one subscribes to.

And so with the debut of Cooked, my one sided love affair continues. Me, always the student and Michael Pollan, my favorite and most entertaining teacher. The kind of teacher that you wish you could have beer with or in this case maybe grow some potted herbs with. But in the end it’s all about the passion and knowledge he brings to the classroom. Pollan is a powerful voice in the battle to bring real food back into our kitchen and a relentless advocate for the foods that Madison Avenue forgot. My hero. Sigh.

You can find the Cooked series at Netflix.com and the book is available at michaelpollan.com.


A family member was kind enough to get me a signed copy of
The Omnivores Dilemma when Pollan was speaking in CA.
His note reads: “For Melissa. Vote with your fork”
This is something that I aspire to every day.

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