Mission Statement:

Sustainable pantry is a showcase of my work from my kitchen preparing delicious, straight-forward and healthy meals. The pantry is the foundation, and when stocked thoughtfully and accented with fresh, high-quality ingredients, it sustains me, my family, our health and the planet with meal after meal of feel-good, taste-great food.


My goal with Sustainable Pantry is to show that even in an urban setting with a demanding schedule, you can sustain yourself on an environmentally responsible diet that’s healthy, delicious and won’t break your budget or cause you to spend your whole life in the kitchen. The trick is careful planning and stocking your kitchen with some pantry essentials.

The Kinds of Recipes You’ll Find Here:

This blog is about how I cook at home, and is therefore a reflection of the way I eat at home. All recipes pull heavily from my pantry which is stocked with a variety of whole grains, legumes, spices, oils, vinegars, condiments, and other assorted goodies. Unless noted otherwise, all recipes on sustainablepantry.com are original.

This site was started in June 2008 and I’ve gone through more than a few dietary pendulum swings in the past 10 years. I have spent years at a time being strictly plant-based, and I’ve spent months between those stretches being carnivorous. The truth is, I’ve always enjoyed cooking meat and I love the taste…when I’m not eating it, its because of ethical and environmental reasons mostly and although I don’t find it hard to *not* eat meat, I do miss it when I’m not eating it. But, even when I am not eating animals (I currently am) I still keep an omnivorous kitchen and cook meat, eggs and dairy meals for my family. All that to say: the majority of our food at home remains plant-based, accented with eggs, fish, meat, dairy. I’m starting to toy around with eating meat once a week, and that makes most sense falling on Friday night, when we cook and eat as a family (often with friends).

We’re lucky to have a year-round NYC Greenmarket in Forest Hills that supplies us with pastured eggs and dairy from upstate NY. Sometimes we buy fish from the fish stall that brings in local fish from the east end of Long Island. For meat, we order from Grow and Behold, a kosher, pasture-raised, family-run meat company started by friends in Brooklyn. I LOVE SARDINES, and I order them in bulk (along with canned wild salmon) from Vital Choice, a certified sustainable seafood company in Alaska. It’s most important to me to eat whole, local, minimally-processed foods as much as possible — that’s when I feel best!

What’s This Sustainability All About?

31% of our nation’s food is thrown out each day. By learning to cook based on what you have in stock (and stocking the right things to make that easy), your kitchen will be more sustainable, meaning that food makes it onto your plate before making it into the trash. Sustainability is the capacity to endure.

We all make our everyday food choices based on so many factors which may include: taste, health, cost, convenience, geography, religion, politics, you get the point. With the hustle of modern life, it’s understandable that convenience and cost usually win out, it happens to all of us. But that doesn’t have to mean fast food, microwave dinners, pizza and take-out all the time (or even any of the time once you’ve worked at it and learned a few tricks).

We’ve been fooled into thinking that cooking food from seasonal vegetables and whole grains has to be time-consuming, inconvenient or expensive, but that’s just not true. With a few techniques, some basic equipment, and the right pantry, you can learn how to get yourself on a great tasting, nutrient-dense, feel-good diet.

Support Local, Sustainable and Organic Producers:

By supporting local, organic, and sustainably produced food, visiting farmer’s markets, joining a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program, and cooking at home using real ingredients, we can help bring real change to the food landscape in this country.

We participate in a both a Summer and Winter Hazon CSA that delivers to a drop-off location in Queens, and majority of our produce during the 26-week growing season (and 4 month winter share) is from our CSA’s farm, Golden Earthworm Organic Farm, on the North Fork of Long Island. Our CSA offers supplementary shares of dried beans, grain and flour from Purcell Mountain Farms and coffee, tea and chocolate from Equal Exchange. Some years, in the late fall, our CSA offers additional tomato shares which we process and can/freeze to last us through the winter. To learn more about our CSA, and to find out if there’s a CSA program near you, CLICK HERE

A little about me:

I (Alexa) grew up cooking and learned at an early age that good food comes from fresh ingredients. During college, I worked in the kitchens of some of New York’s finest restaurants and catering companies. I’ve also served as the chef at a small organic vineyard in Provence, France (best 6 weeks EVER!), stocked healthy meals in the fridges of busy New York families and catered small dinner parties over the years. I have a BS from NYU in Studio Art and a MS from Touro College in Oriental Medicine and Acupuncture. I am a licensed acupuncturist in New York State as well as a nationally board certified Chinese herbalist. I teach cooking classes emphasizing my style of easy, plant-based and nourishing recipes. Check out the classes tab at the top of this page for upcoming events/classes.

I hope you find inspiration in these posts. If you do, please follow me on Twitter and Instagram.

Questions, comments, favorite recipes and successes are welcomed either through comments or by emailing: comments {at} sustainablepantry {dot} com. Sustainable Pantry is also available to cater your next get-together in the New York area, contact me for details.

Cooking Demo

6 thoughts on “About

  • June 24, 2008 at 10:10 pm

    Pretty awesome blog. Takes more time to write than cooking the food. Keep on going.

  • July 18, 2008 at 1:43 pm

    Love this site loved the pics and really enjoyed the easy to follow cooking guides.

  • November 14, 2008 at 11:20 am

    I will for sure bookmark your Blog. I like the FlickR link to all the pictures of past dishes, but I wish they referenced which archive they are in. Being retired due to disability, good, healthy, not to expensive, cooking is a God send.

  • November 15, 2008 at 12:59 am

    Glad you’re enjoying the blog Jim. We will be improving our archiving soon, adding a list of linked recipes on the sidebar. The pictures are from before we started blogging, so unfortunately we don’t have entries for them. Is there one dish in particular you’re interested in making? We’d be happy to provide you with a recipe. I like your site, some really beautiful pictures. Cheers!

  • August 6, 2016 at 6:17 pm

    i just have a question i saw the cheese made in 5 mins and was wondering if you could freeze it after it is cooled i know it’s curds but just wondering as i have never made homemade cheese but would love to try

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