BRUNSWICK

A small-town blog has made it big.

Founded in 2008 by Brunswick native Elspeth Pierson Hay, Diary of a Locavore recently partnered with Edible Media, a multimedia extension of Edible Communities.

Blog contributors include Brunswick’s own Liz Pierson, Hay’s mother.

Diary of a Locavore features recipes, information about local resources, and a link to Hay’s radio feature, Local Food Report.

Pierson, who started contributing in April, said her goal for the blog is to encourage people to cook using seasonal, locally sourced ingredients.

“Supporting local food isn’t just about healthy eating, as important as that is,” Pierson said. “It’s a great way to support the community and local farmland.

“Whenever I see those bumper stickers, ‘No Farms No Food,’ it always give me pause to think,” she said, crediting high local interest for the thriving farmers market scene in Brunswick and surrounding areas.

Pierson has been an avid supporter of the farmers market on Brunswick’s Mall since its inception in the 1970s, she said. Her blog contributions are typically inspired by the seasonal food items she finds at these markets, and by what she grows in her own large garden.

“I write about whatever is growing,” she said. “So, if I harvest all this Tuscan kale, then what should I do with it?”

Pierson creates new recipes for the blog, but also shares some of her family favorites.

And locals reap the benefits.

“I’m always surprised when I walk into The Little Dog,” Pierson said, referring to the downtown Brunswick cafe owned by Paul Harrison, “and Paul’s wife says, ‘I loved that recipe you shared.’”

Pierson got her first taste of Brunswick in 1974 when she spent a semester at Bowdoin College as a visiting student from Smith College.

She got a lot more out of that semester than a sampling of local edibles, though; Pierson met her future husband, Jan Pierson, in an ornithology class.

When not at work in her garden or kitchen, Pierson works as a freelance writer and editor. Among her favorite projects is serving as the editor of the Chewonki Foundation’s Chronicle, a biannual magazine.

Their two daughters, Elspeth and Anna, were both raised in Brunswick. Anna, who is completing her final year of a threeyear nursing program, currently lives in Portland. Anna also contributes to the blog as Portland’s resident locavore.

Elspeth developed a love of cooking from scratch from her mother and grandmother — keepers of the family’s traditional recipes.

This love grew into the weekly column, “Good Seasonings,” published in The Times Record, which focused on eating locally through all seasons, before her work hit the blogosphere.

When Hay relocated to Wellfleet, Mass., the task of keeping it local in Brunswick fell to Pierson.

Elspeth is currently busy writing about the local food scene in Cape Cod, Pierson said, where she now lives with her Husband, Alex, and daughter, Sally.

Edible Communities publishes local food magazines in more than 80 communities across the nation. In 2011, the Edible brand was awarded the James Beard Foundation Award as Publication of the Year.

Edible Media is a subsidiary of Lifestyle Media Partners Inc., which caters to “hyperlocal food enthusiasts.”

Its latest venture was launched this month: Edible Feast.com, a source for all that is local, seasonal, and edible — and Diary of a Locavore’s new partner.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“We’re incredibly excited about partnering,” Pierson said. “It’s going to give Diary of a Locavore a larger audience, and it’s exciting to be part of an online community who are committed to eating local.”

[email protected]timesrecord.com



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