“Indeed, a deep bowl of Nixtamal’s posole (“innocuous” but “pleasant,” Ms. Kennedy said) inspires a reverie on the earthy porkiness of one version she has researched. Traditionally made with a whole pig’s head, she said, each spoonful was unctuous, full of textures of cartilage and fat. “If you didn’t get a piece of ear,” Ms. Kennedy said, it was once considered a slight. “That’s just a bit of old folklore,” she added with a midslurp smile.
That a pig’s ear today may be considered trash is part of what bothers Ms. Kennedy. She is antiwasteful — of plastic bags, animal fat, electricity, water, wild herbs, the power of the sun — and is fond of quoting the speech she gave last summer at MAD Food Camp in Copenhagen. “If you invite me into your kitchen, don’t think the first thing I’m going to look at is your food,” she recited. “I’m going to look at your garbage.”