Author(s): Marie Viljoen
Gardening from her tiny 66 square foot terrace in Brooklyn, South African-born Marie Viljoen started her blog as a way to chronicle the seasons of gardening and cooking in New York City. What began as a simple blog to stay in touch with her mother in South Africa quickly became a popular blog that has been lauded by Apartment Therapy and the Discovery Channel as one of the top 10 gardening blogs to read. The New York Times profiled Marie in a May 2011 article about the volunteer clean up group she founded to help Prospect Park and her bouillabaisse recipe was mentioned in Molly Ringwald's 2010 memoir. In addition Marie writes and photographs for Edible Brooklyn and appeared on the cover of their summer 2011 issue. In the book, Marie explores the intimate connection between New York City seasons and her gardening and subsequent cooking adventures. As Marie says, "I have always looked at what is growing at my feet to know where and when I am in the world. And then I have tried to eat it." Part cooking, part gardening, somewhat poetic, completely practical and totally charming, 66 Square Feet is a year in the life of Marie's terrace. Month by month, we watch and learn as she plants, grows, cooks and lives happily from her labours. Marie's terrace is the foundation and what comes from it is really quite spectacular. Each chapter (month) is broken into three sections: New York City, Terrace and Food. Her recipes are interesting and doable and include cocktails like Bear Talk (hard apple cider and spicebush-infused cognac), carrot and cumin soup with buttermilk, lamb shoulder with anchovies and field garlic, and pears roasted in red wine with bay leaves.
South African-born Marie Viljoen lives in a small townhouse in Brooklyn with her cat and French husband and gardens on her terrace. She started the blog, 66 Square Feet in order to chronicle her gardening and cooking adventures through the NYC seasons. Apartment Therapy named 66 Square Feet one of their top 10 gardening blogs and the Discovery Channel named it one of their 10 favorite small space gardening blogs. Marie writes and photographs for Edible Brooklyn and has been featured on the cover of the magazine and in the New York Times. She has appeared on NBC, CBS, and her terrace will be featured in Martha Stewart Living this spring.