This year we will offer more than just culinary training inside the classroom. With the creation of our new gardens at the Living Light Inn and the Grey Whale Inn, we will include hands-on workshops teaching soil fertility, gardening techniques and 'seed-to-table' skills that encourage the best in optimal nutrition.
This hands-on approach is a way for students to learn about the connection between their everyday food choices, their health, and the health of our environment.
Skilled gardener and ‘soil farmer’, Clay Houghland, will be leading the renovation of the land around the historic inns to become "market gardens" or "micro-farms." Previously from British Columbia, Clay, and his partner Sadhana (a culinary instructor), are part of the talented and dedicated Living Light faculty. “As a vegan, I’ve been invested in plant-based fertility - not using animal bi-products - in gardening for years,” said Clay. “I want to see us building fertility in the soil all-year long so we aren't reliant on traditional fertilizers and amendments.”
The idea of growing an edible landscape where our students are housed while attending class, was connected to a larger vision of ensuring local, fresh vegetables and herbs could be sourced year round. The shorter the time between the farm and your table, the less likely it is that nutrients will be lost from fresh food. The philosophy of locally-sourced food makes sense not only for individual health reasons, but also lowers the carbon footprint for our food. In addition, we support our local area farms by purchasing their produce.
“I love the work that Clay does," said Culinary Director, James Sant. "We are building soil which will provide high-nutrient food that makes our gourmet dishes not only beautiful in appearance but deeply nourishing.”
Check out the upcoming Class Schedule >