Archive | 2013

Gifts from the Kitchen: Rosemary Ginger Syrup, Peppermint Pretzel Sticks, and Pomegranate Chocolate Bark

For our last class before holiday break, I promised the kids we would make gifts. Choosing a recipe proved difficult, however. Cookies? Bread? Jam, jelly, pickles? Granola? One of my favorites, spicy herbed nuts? Kids being kids, nothing delights like candy, so when a poll of Facebook friends leaned toward peppermint bark — the best use […]

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Fresh Local Cider, Salmon, Slaw, and Ozettes

Last Tuesday was Terra Madre Day, the international celebration of local food. Wanting to showcase Pacific Northwest bounty, I asked my friend Larry Liang, who volunteers for the nonprofit City Fruit, if we could borrow their wooden cider press (I’d seen it in action at a recent fundraiser and knew the kids would love it). Being the awesome guy he is, Larry arranged for fellow volunteer Barbara Burrill to bring the press as well as local apples and expertise. What a treat.

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Tomato-Basil Bisque with Croutons, and Greens with Mustard Vinaigrette

Our guest expert this week was my friend Lesa Sullivan-Abajian, private chef, cooking instructor, and a frequent volunteer (beloved by Seattle nonprofits and farmers markets). Lesa has a heart of solid gold, or perhaps the culinary equivalent, Plugra. As engaging as she is knowledgeable, she navigated our often-chaotic classroom with grace, spicing the lesson with amusing metaphors […]

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Sweet Potato Hummus and Delicata Boats with Red Rice Stuffing

It jolted me to hear students say they had never tasted a sweet potato. One had never eaten squash. But it should not surprise me, especially coming from children. At TedxRainier last week, I learned from Valerie Seagrest of the Muckleshoot Food Sovereignty Project that the first peoples of our region had over 400 food items in […]

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Gluten-free Granola Parfaits and Hearty Vegetable Chili

One of the unexpected benefits to teaching this class is learning more about local organizations doing good things for food education. Flagship Foundation Pure Food Kids Workshop is a stellar example. Having worked with Kurt Dammeier while building our neighborhood farmers market (his iconic mobile “pig” restaurant, Maximus/Minimus, was a regular feature, and Pasta & Co hosted […]

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White Bean Dip and Flourless Raspberry Chocolate Cakes

Sometimes things go wrong. As in frying my laptop keyboard with hot tea, or jinxing the copy machine ten minutes before class. As in promising our guest the ingredients for her raspberry chocolate cakes but leaving the raspberry part on my kitchen counter. As in buying the wrong kind of chocolate (semi instead of bittersweet) and mispronouncing her […]

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Bugs in a Boat and Pumpkin Spice Ice Cream

When Queen Anne neighbor Rob Gardiner offered to make ice cream with the class, I leapt at the chance. Years ago, Rob brought his swing dancing group to the farmers market I was directing, and I recall how charming it was, on a lovely day in May, to see people dancing on the sidewalk as […]

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Avgolemono, Cucumber Mint Salad, and Baked Apples

The weather in Seattle this week has been beautiful if a little spooky. A long-lasting temperature inversion has trapped us in layers of cotton wool that scatters the sunlight, making maple trees look as if they’re lit from within. In other words, great soup weather. For this week’s lesson, I wanted to practice timing recipes […]

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Veggie Quesadillas, Warm Berry Sauce with Yogurt and Almonds

One of the delights of learning to cook is discovering that when things go wrong, it’s usually not that big of a deal. Our second week got off to a bumpy start, with one volunteer out sick and another running late, plus a kitchen that seemed to be fighting us at times. The first lesson […]

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Deviled Egg Salad

What a great beginning! The students arrived ready to listen and learn, and their first task was to put on a nametag and wash their hands. Phyllis had beautified the tables with red runners, and put out bowls of carrot and celery sticks for snacking, while I readied some hot chocolate on the stove (with […]

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