Every year Earth Day falls on April 22nd. It is easy for me to remember because it happens to be my brother’s birthday. Happy Birthday Day to Tal and Happy Earth Day to All. This year, Earth Day falls on a Sunday and that means we have time to sleep late and celebrate. Check your local papers and you will find tons of great earth-friendly activities. When it’s time to go home, pick up some food at the local farmer's market so you can cook up an environmentally friendly meal.
Earth Day was started in 1970 by Gaylor Nelson, a US senator from Wisconsin, to raise awareness of the environmental issues our world is facing. The first Earth Day was celebrated by more than 20 million people and now over 500 million people in 175 countries participate in some way. Many important laws were passed after the 1970 Earth Day, including the Clean Air Act and the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency(EPA). In 1990, environmental leaders used Earth Day to boost recycling efforts. In 2000, the focus was on global warming and clean energy. We’ve come a long way in the last 40 years,but there is still a lot more tikkun olam needed.
Since I’m a foodie, what better way to celebrate Earth Day than cooking food that is easy on the environment? Environmentally friendly food includes seasonal and local produce. Head off to your local Farmers Market and find some spring favorites, like asparagus, cabbage, cauliflower and peas. Try this Chilled Pea and Mint Soup using fresh peas in the pod for an even fresher taste. Have the kids shell the peas to keep them busy and don’t be surprised if you catch them snacking. You’ll love this Asparagus Tart and try serving with Crispy Cauliflower or Sweet Mango Slaw.
It’s Earth Day. Let’s get our hands a little dirty. Make a dark chocolate mousse and put it in a small plastic or ceramic flower pot (clean thoroughly, please). Top with chocolate cookie crumbs and a fake flower or gummy worm and enjoy. Who knew Earth Day can taste so good!