Off The Record

Programming Alert: Don't miss Georgia Pelligrini Thursday night on 'The Glenn Beck Program'

Reprinted from Modern Pioneering, courtesy of Clarkson Potter

Over the last several months, Glenn has emphasized the importance of bringing together individuals who share the same goals and unifying principles so that we can learn from one another. GlennBeck.com is working to fulfill that goal by sitting down with some of the most interesting minds to give you an inside look at who they are and what they are working on.

From the conference rooms of Lehman Brothers to the kitchens of Michelin Star restaurants, to the backwoods of the United States, chef and entrepreneur Georgia Pellegrini has been on a fascinating journey. She spoke to GlennBeck.com assistant editor Meg Storm about why she left Wall Street for culinary school, how she developed her passion for hunting, and the ‘pioneering’ skills every American should have… oh, and there might be a delicious recipe or two along the way. Enjoy!

Below is a transcript of the interview:

You have had a very interesting career path from working on Wall Street to cooking in Michelin Star restaurants to hunting the Great Plains. Can you talk about that transformation?

After college I took the path of least resistance at the time, which was investment banking. A lot of people just went into consulting or banking or graduate school. I got an offer from Lehman Brothers. It was a lot of money for a college student, so I took it.

I got to the point where I felt like it had crushed my soul. I just realized how unhappy I was, and I thought to myself, ‘Well, what am I doing when I am at my happiest?’ I think the silver lining is: When you are doing something that doesn’t make you happy, it forces you to think about what you’re doing when you’re happiest. For me, it was always food and cooking.

I had this longing to get back to my roots. I come from upstate New York. I grew up on the same land my great grandfather lived on. I grew up living off the land – growing food and keeping chickens and honeybees. I used to fish trout and eat it for breakfast. I just wanted to find a way to get back to that.

I decided to enroll in culinary school [French Culinary Institute], and it was definitely a leap of faith for me – and definitely a pay cut!

(Laughs)

But I realized pretty quickly that even though I was working the same crazy hours and making below minimum wage with no benefits, it didn’t feel like work in the same way to me. It felt fun, and I knew that it was the right thing for me.

So I slaved away in kitchens in New York [Gramercy Tavern and Blue Hill at Stone Barn], and I also went to cook in a restaurant in the south of France [La Chassagnette]. Interestingly, I was in the south of France when Lehman Brothers collapsed, so I knew I had made the right decision.

In that moment, I started to think about what else I wanted to do in the food space. Someone forwarded something I had written to a literary agent in New York, and she asked if she could talk to me. I took a bus to the nearest town and got in the phone booth and called New York. That is how my first book, Food Heroes: Sixteen Culinary Artisans Preserving Tradition, was born.

That’s amazing.

It happened totally serendipitously.

I read that it was the act of having to actually kill and prepare a turkey at one of the restaurants you worked in that made you really start to think more about where ingredients come from. What was so eye opening about that experience?

During my time as a chef, I became much more interactive with my ingredients. I believe food should be experiential. I am a big proponent of interacting with your ingredients in some way. When I was in New York, I had to kill some turkeys for a restaurant I was working in.

That was a watershed moment for me. I knew that I would always eat meat, and I loved to eat meat. I was good at butchering animals and fileting fish. I grew up getting dirt under my fingernails. But I had never really faced the casual way in which nature treats life and death and paid the full karmic price of a meal. I had never had the opportunity to treat the animal with integrity all the way to the plate and step outside of our factory farm food system. I decided, in that moment, I wanted to learn how to hunt my own food.

I set out on this journey to learn how to hunt, and that was sort of the story of my second book, Girl Hunter: Revolutionizing the Way We Eat, One Hunt at a Time, which was the journey over field and stream in search of the main course. It focuses on all the crazy characters you meet along the way – the people who took me under their wing and taught me how to live off the land. It was a wild journey, but it felt right to me because, for the first time, it felt like I had really tapped into that natural human instinct that we all have deep down. I knew that I wanted to have that experience of heightened senses – seeing differently, hearing differently, smelling differently. I vowed, in that moment, to live a life more connected to my roots and where I come from – where we all come from.

Long story short, I have been able to make a career out of it.

You touched on this a little bit, but why do you believe it is so important for people to understand where their food comes from?

I think it makes us better human beings. I think it makes us better to one another. I think it makes us better stewards of the world and the land.

At some point, I realized I had all these vulnerabilities. Even though I had lived off the land, there were so many things I didn’t know how to do. I had gone to college, but I didn’t know how to fix my own toilet. I think having these vulnerabilities and shaking them is a very important thing.

Knowing where your food comes from is a very similar concept. We have these factory farms, and animals are suffering. I realized we are all kind of proxy executioners, but I think there is something very powerful about doing it yourself. I think when you know what has had to happen for food to get to your plate, you appreciate it more. It tastes better. There are more memories associated with the meal. If food is such a transactional experience, it loses its joy. It loses its meaning. And it loses all the memories. I have so many food memories, and I know most people do. Beyond basic sustenance, it is your job as a chef or someone who is cooking for others to bring people together and give people pleasure and happiness.

To not care or know the source of anything is to have an anonymous relationship with food. It is not the relationship human beings were meant to have. You go to the grocery store and buy a boneless, skinless chicken breast wrapped in plastic with no sign it was ever a living thing. No one knows how to quarter a whole chicken anymore. People see a whole chicken and don’t know what to do with it or how to roast it. I think that is too bad, and I don’t think we are our best selves as human beings when we live that way.

Reprinted from Modern Pioneering, courtesy of Clarkson PotterI’ve looked at your website – and even your book cover for Girl Hunter – and there is a lot of gun imagery. Do you ever face any backlash for being so open about your passion for hunting?

I have been surprised at how little backlash I have experienced, and I think it is for two reasons.

One is that I see everything through the lens of food. I am a chef first, and everyone needs to eat. Most people love food. Food is a connector. It is one of those great unifiers. People can disagree on so many things, but they can break bread and there is that union. I think I have a very specific, philosophical approach to why I hunt. The editor who bought my book was a vegetarian. The only different between us was that she realized she wanted to break out of the industrial food system the way I did, but she couldn’t pull the trigger and kill the animal. I could.

For me, I think it is just about being a conscious and participating in the cycle of life. I always say: We eat animals and plants, and animals eat plants, and plants eat from the dirt. It is this beautiful cycle. I think because I can tell that story, I have gotten less backlash.

The second reason is that I don’t fit the profile of the typical American hunter. I think people have these stereotypes, and the reality is: There is no reason that we all can’t be hunters. I am very feminine, and I maintain that femininity while doing this thing that is associated with a very masculine culture. So I think – to some degree – I have changed the face of what hunting is and changed the discussion of why I do it. That has helped.

You now organize ‘Adventure Getaways’, which, from what I have seen, look really fun and interesting. How did those come about?

When my book came out, I hosted a bunch of female writers on a weekend with me. It was to teach them some of these skills. We did some clay shooting and fly-fishing and s’mores around the campfire. They wrote about that experience, and I got so many inquiries from women around the country who were sharing their stories with me. A lot of them were going through difficult things in their life, and they were sharing their vulnerabilities with me.

I realized that what I was doing was resonating with women and empowering them. I received a lot of requests from women asking if they could go on these adventures with me, but I had never planned to do another one. Because of these inquiries, I decided to plan another one as an experiment. It sold out and had a waiting list.

It has really snowballed from there. I do several a year now, and they sell out quickly. It really is a magical experience. A lot of women describe it as their ‘unraveling’. Some of them are busy moms who are devoting everything to their children and husbands, and this is their chance to do things that scare them or do things they have never done before. It is a chance to experience life more viscerally and to step outside their comfort zone. It is an emotional experience, but it changes them. They get this Amazonian look in their eyes, and they bond for life. These women have reunions long after, and a lot of them choose to come back year after year.

I think it very unexpected but totally magical, and it is a gift that I get to do it.

Editor’s Note: Georgia has two upcoming Adventure Getaways. Learn more about them HERE.

Reprinted from Modern Pioneering, courtesy of Clarkson Potter
Reprinted from Modern Pioneering, courtesy of Clarkson Potter  All photographs copyright © Georgia Pellegrini 2014.

Reprinted from Modern Pioneering, courtesy of Clarkson Potter

That is wonderful. What is a typical itinerary like for one of these weekends?

I have two in Montana this fall. Basically, the weekend includes a whole range of pioneer skills. We teach people how to clay shoot. A lot of people will be using a gun for the first time. Some are more experienced. We try to break people up based on their experience level. In this case, we teach them how to hunt birds. I teach them how to clean the birds and cook the birds they hunted. And then they eat them.

We also do fly-fishing, which is a wonderful experience because it requires a certain technique in learning to tie flies and casting. We are in the streams of Montana, and it is really beautiful. We go horseback riding through the fields, which is scary for a lot of women. But they also love it. We do ATV rides 10,000 feet in the mountains to see wildlife and these unbelievable panoramic views. We do falconry, which is awesome. You watch these falcons do the hunting for you. It is a pretty spectacular sight.

And then there is just wonderful girl bonding – lots of laughing and s’mores around the fire with great wine, five-star food, and luxurious accommodations. It is that wonderful balance of creature comforts and getting that dust and wind in your hair.

What is the number one thing you hope women take away from one of your Adventure Getaways?

I hope women surprise themselves and feel more fearless after the weekend. I think most women are perfectionists, and we are our own worst critics. I want women to try new things with abandon, be okay with failing, laugh at themselves, and support and encourage each other.

Life is hard. Being a woman has so many challenges. And I think it is really wonderful when you can face those vulnerabilities and challenges with a sense of fearlessness and an idea in your mind of, ‘Maybe I can do this. Maybe I’ll surprise myself.’ That’s the feeling of exhilaration and empowerment you get when you achieve something you didn’t think you could. It’s totally special and addictive. Once you experience it, you just keep wanting to. So that is my goal for them all.

In a similar realm, your latest book, Modern Pioneering: More Than 150 Recipes, Projects, and Skills for a Self-Sufficient Life, offers a really interesting array of tips aimed at self-sufficiency.

Yes, my third book just came out, and it teaches people ‘manual literacy’. It’s the idea of learning those skills our grandparent’s generation had – that we should still have – but we have all lost touch with because we have become so specialized in our knowledge and so much of lives are technology driven now.

It gives people the access to those skills in a fun way. I don’t expect everyone to have hours on end to do this kind of stuff, but it’s something you can do in 15, 30 minutes – things that you can up cycle. I want to help people be more self-sufficient, even if they live in a small urban space.

So what are the three ‘pioneering’ skills people should have?

1. I think people should know how to change their own tire. I think it is really great if you are able to figure it out when you are stuck on the side of the road.

2. I think people should know how to find their way with or without a compass. You should be able to use nature to find your direction.

3. And I always encourage people to learn how to grow something. Even if you have no land whatsoever, you can still grow 25 pounds of potatoes in a garbage pail on your fire escape. Just the idea of finding ways to interact with nature – even if you don’t have a lot of land around you – is really fun.

If you don’t mind putting on your chef’s hat for a minute –

Of course!

Now that fall is just around the corner, what are some ingredients people should begin incorporating into their recipes?

As fall rolls around and the temperature starts to get colder, root vegetables become really wonderfully sweet. Parsnips are really wonderful roasted or pureed into soup. I love kale in the colder months – it starts to taste a little better. And there are so many wonderful squashes that come out – acorn squash, buttercup squash, and butternut squash. I just love all those gourds that pop up this time of year. So I would focus on root vegetables and some of those greens that do well in the cold.


Download this recipe in PDF format
 


Download this recipe in PDF format
 


Download this recipe in PDF format
 

Do you have any other projects you’d like to talk about?

I have my line of apparel that came out that has been really fun and popular. The website is ShopByGeorgia.com. It is all made in America. We do custom cuts, custom fabrics, all made in LA. It is totally designed by me.

People are loving them. They are a little bit edgy and have funny sayings on them that are a little in your face. I always get stopped when I wear one of them by people wanting to know where I got it. It is fun to wear.

There is a little bit of a trend starting with people taking pictures of themselves in the shirts, so we started an Instagram feed with all these people. My lawyer just sent me picture of him wearing one at his law office. It’s really fun. The Instagram feed is starting to get colorful.

That is such a great conversation starter! So before we wrap up I have a few ‘lightening round’ questions for you – one word answers will suffice.

Great.

What’s your favorite food to eat?

Probably avocados. I love everything, but if I had to choose one thing right now, it would be avocados.

What’s your favorite food to cook?

Meat of any kind.

Who do you most admire?

I would say the older women of my family. They have an amazing knowhow and instinct and wisdom that I always look up to. I feel like I am a sponge when I am around them trying to gain their knowledge.

What’s your favorite place to visit?

The land that has been in my family for 100 years. It’s called Tulipwood. I just love visiting it. The land has so much history for my family.

 

This transcript has been edited and condensed.

Photos Reprinted from Modern Pioneering, courtesy of Clarkson Potter
All photographs copyright © Georgia Pellegrini 2014.
 

The current riots and movement to erase America's history are exactly in line with the New York Times' "1619 Project," which argues that America was rotten at its beginning, and that slavery and systemic racism are the roots of everything from capitalism to our lack of universal health care.

On this week's Wednesday night special, Glenn Beck exposed the true intent of the "1619 Project" and its creator, who justifies remaking America into a Marxist society. This clever lie is disguised as history, and it has already infiltrated our schools.

"The '1619 Project' desperately wants to pass itself off as legitimate history, but it totally kneecaps itself by ignoring so much of the American story. There's no mention of any black Americans who succeeded in spite of slavery, due to the free market capitalist system. In the 1619 Project's effort to take down America, black success stories are not allowed. Because they don't fit with the narrative. The role of white Americans in abolishing slavery doesn't fit the narrative either," Glenn said.

"The agenda is not ultimately about history," he added. "It's just yet another vehicle in the fleet now driven by elites in America toward socialism."

Watch a preview of the full episode below:


Watch the full episode only on BlazeTV. Not a subscriber? Use promo code GLENN to get $10 off your BlazeTV subscription or start your 30-day free trial today.

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Acclaimed environmentalist and author of "Apocalypse Never" Michael Shellenberger joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Wednesday to warn us about the true goals and effects of climate alarmism: It's become a "secular religion" that lowers standards of living in developed countries, holds developing countries back, and has environmental progress "exactly wrong."

Michael is a Time "Hero of the Environment," Green Book Award winner, and the founder and president of Environmental Progress. He has been called a "environmental guru," "climate guru," "North America's leading public intellectual on clean energy," and "high priest" of the environmental humanist movement for his writings and TED talks, which have been viewed more than 5 million times. But when Michael penned a stunning article in Forbes saying, "On Behalf of Environmentalists, I Apologize for the Climate Scare", the article was pulled just a few hours later. (Read more here.)

On the show, Micheal talked about how environmental alarmism has overtaken scientific fact, leading to a number of unfortunate consequences. He said one of the problems is that rich nations are blocking poor nations from being able to industrialize. Instead, they are seeking to make poverty sustainable, rather than to make poverty history.

"As a cultural anthropologist, I've been traveling to poorer countries and interviewing small farmers for over 30 years. And, obviously there are a lot of causes why countries are poor, but there's no reason we should be helping them to stay poor," Michael said. "A few years ago, there was a movement to make poverty history ... [but] it got taken over by the climate alarmist movement, which has been focused on depriving poor countries, not just of fossil fuels they need to develop, but also the large hydroelectric dams."

He offered the example of the Congo, one of the poorest countries in the world. The Congo has been denied the resources needed to build large hydroelectric dams, which are absolutely essential to pull people out of poverty. And one of the main groups preventing poor countries from the gaining financing they need to to build dams is based in Berkeley, California — a city that gets its electricity from hydroelectric dams.

"It's just unconscionable ... there are major groups, including the Sierra Club, that support efforts to deprive poor countries of energy. And, honestly, they've taken over the World Bank [which] used to fund the basics of development: roads, electricity, sewage systems, flood control, dams," Micheal said.

"Environmentalism, apocalyptic environmentalism in particular, has become the dominant religion of supposedly secular people in the West. So, you know, it's people at the United Nations. It's people that are in very powerful positions who are trying to impose 'nature's order' on societies," he continued. "And, of course, the problem is that nobody can figure out what nature is, and what it's not. That's not a particular good basis for organizing your economy."

Watch the video below to catch more of the conversation:

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Dr. Voddie Baucham, Dean of Theology at African Christian University in Lusaka, Zambia, joined Glenn Beck on the radio program to explain why he agrees with Vice President Mike Pence's refusal to say the phrase "Black Lives Matter."

Baucham, who recently drew national attention when his sermon titled "Ethnic Gnosticism" resurfaced online, said the phrase has been trademarked by a dangerous, violent, Marxist movement that doesn't care about black lives except to use them as political pawns.

"We have to separate this movement from the issues," Baucham warned. "I know that [Black Lives Matter] is a phrase that is part of an organization. It is a trademark phrase. And it's a phrase designed to use black people.

"That phrase dehumanizes black people, because it makes them pawns in a game that has nothing whatsoever to do with black people and their dignity. And has everything to do with a divisive agenda that is bigger than black people. That's why I'm not going to use that phrase, because I love black people. I love being black."

Baucham warned that Black Lives Matter -- a radical Marxist movement -- is using black people and communities to push a dangerous and divisive narrative. He encouraged Americans to educate themselves on the organization's agenda and belief statement.

"This movement is dangerous. This movement is vicious. And this movement uses black people," he emphasized. "And so if I'm really concerned about issues in the black community -- and I am -- then I have to refuse, and I have to repudiate that organization. Because they stand against that for which I am advocating."

Watch the video below to catch more of the conversation:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

We're going to be doing an amazing broadcast on Thursday, July 2nd, and we will be broadcasting a really important moment. It is restoring truth. It is restoring our history. It is asking to you make a covenant with God. The covenant that was made by the Pilgrims. And it's giving you a road map of things that we can do, to be able to come back home, together.

All of us.

And it's never been more important. Join us live from the Standing Rock Ranch on Blaze TV, YouTube and Facebook at 8:00 p.m. Eastern time on Thursday July, 2nd and restore the hope in you.

Make sure you join us and use the hashtag and spread the word, fight the mob today and you'll save $20 on your year of subscription. We need you now more than ever.

RESTORING HOPE: Join Glenn live from Standing Rock Ranch to restore the American covenant youtu.be