HandPicked People: Robyn Jasko

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As we’ve built up our community here at HandPicked Nation, we have met some truly incredible farmers, ranchers, makers and thinkers in the real food movement. Which prompted the thought, why not share a little more about the real people of real food with our readers?

Welcome to another addition of HandPicked People!

Robyn Jasko is an incredible ambassador for the homegrown life.

She leads the community garden in her Pennsylvania town, she runs the terrific gardening blog GrowIndie.com, and she recently released her book Homesweet Homegrown (Microcosm Publishing). Robyn’s biggest aim in all of these endeavors is to simply show people that anyone can grow and store their own food, no matter where they live.

That a little plot of land, or a collection of containers on a windowsill, can show anyone the importance of food security – and that can never be overestimated. It is truly worthy work, and we thank Robyn for all that she does.

Name: Robyn Jasko

Occupation: Gardener, Author & Blogger

Describe what you do in ten words or less. Modern homesteader, writer, community garden starter, vegetarian, dot commer, activist

Describe real food in one sentence. Real food is anything that I can grow, pick, or make myself.

What is your first food memory? When I was growing up, we pretty much lived on junk food, McDonald’s, Ellio’s, Chef Boyardee and food cooked in the microwave (my parents made meatloaf that way!). So, to be honest, my first food memories were pretty bleak. It wasn’t until I worked at a health food store in college that everything changed and I learned what a vegetable was (and that they didn’t come out of a can).

When most people who know me hear this, they are shocked! Today, I live off of vegetables, and try to grow, freeze, can and store as many different types as possible. And I love kale!

If you were a food or a flavor, what would you be? I would be a habanero pepper—life is too short to be bland. 

What are the five food things you always have on hand? My Blendtec (I use it everyday, I swear), a good sharp kitchen knife, our Melitta pour through coffee cone, homemade hemp milk, and garlic—you’ve got to have garlic!

What is the one professional rule you never break? I have never missed a deadline. Not once. Ever. As a writer and editor, that’s my one golden rule.

What’s going to be your next meal? I love spicy food, and we happen to have all of the ingredients for whipping up a homegrown Tom Yum soup in our freezer or fridge right now. We even have our own lemongrass that I’ve frozen in Mason jars to use all year long. I love having tons of veggies in my soups, so I’ll probably add delicata squash, seasoning peppers, garlic, kale and baby bok choy – all grown in the garden!

Robyn Jasko and HandPicked Nation have cooked up a fun little surprise! Details are coming on Monday, so be sure to check back!