Award-winning New York Times food writer, columnist and cookbook author Mark Bittman thinks that food in California is so rich in history and flavor that he stars in a 10-part web series that will be broadcast on television later this fall titled California Matters With Mark Bittman.
In collaboration with the University of California system, Berkeley Food Institute and KCETLink Media Group, Bittman travels up and down the state visiting schools, farms and institutions studying the latest in food and health policies.
The show explores California history and initiatives including food in public schools, the history of Chinese cuisine in the state, the importance of pollination via honeybees and issues of labor justice within restaurants. We also suspect there might be something regarding the state’s devastating drought.
Episodes will air every two weeks online. Additionally, there will be exclusive online interviews with experts in the farming and nutrition fields by Bittman.
The series ends with an installment called “Why California Really Does Matter,” which leads us to wonder if the Golden State hadn’t mattered up until now.
The first episode, “Take a Walk on the Wild (Edibles) Side,” premiered on Tuesday. It features Bittman and a couple of UC Berkeley professors scavenging for weeds (actually their lunch) on the streets of Oakland. Bittman goes as far as proposing that these weeds could be “the next kale.” Check it out below.