When I was 6 years old, my next-door neighbor sliced open a watermelon he'd grown in his garden and handed me a seed. "Plant this," he said. "And watch." I'll never forget my amazement when the leafy vine finally yielded the beginning of a tiny, round melon. To me, it was magic.
I've covered a lot of different beats in my day, but professionally and personally, I've always been most curious about FOOD — how it grows, where it comes from, how it delights and disappoints, its ability to create ritual, community and nourishment.
I've never quite lost the "beginner's mind" (borrowing a yoga term here) I had at 6 — alive with curiosity and open to the wonder of it all. But what I bring to the subject now is also the reporter's skepticism. See my full bio here.
What we eat influences not only our moods but also our pocketbooks, waistlines and our arteries. We're constantly swayed by powerful branding, as well as nudged by passionate advocates — whether it's organic food or farming practices, the lure of the latest local, artisanal goat cheese or micro-brew, or the antioxidant count of a newly discovered super-berry.
At the same time, scientific research inches forward our understanding of how tiny compounds in the food we eat have the power to protect our cells or set the stage for disease.
I want to disentangle reality from hype, the good science from the less than convincing, and enjoy a lot of the eating and experimenting along the way.
At home, I've got a lot of mouths to feed: namely, my husband and three kids. On some days, food is a big part of the colorful narrative of our lives - from blueberry picking to our boys' ongoing quest for the spiciest hot sauce.
Other days, it's just about "calories in." Part celebration, part slog, food is something we think about and make decisions about every day.
With our new blog we hope to bring you a full menu — from food news to features and Tiny Desk Kitchen videos as well.
I hope that you enjoy and come back often.
Follow The Salt on Twitter @NPRFood and follow me @adaubrey. Or drop us a note about what you're thinking about your food to thesalt at npr dot org.