Spicy Warm

BY ANNE LIVINGSTON We rarely, if ever, use umbrellas in Seattle. Instead our strategy for winter is to hide, sometimes for months. When was the last time you saw your friends? Yeah, same here. Winter hibernation is tempting and comfortable, but why not invite friends over to spend a wet, cold night together? You can warm up by raiding your spice cabinet. A red ginger cider—spiked with apple brandy if you like—will start the evening off. A stew of spicy, coffee-braised beef studded with sweet butternut squash warms things up, while bitter greens tossed with cumin vinaigrette cleanses the palate. By the time you’ve caught up on old times, you’ll be ready for warm pears sautéed with toasted almonds and dried cherries....

Red Cider Zipper

serves 6 |start to finish: 25 minutes Fresh cider is available at many Seattle farmers’ markets throughout the winter and makes a wonderful base for this hot drink. Ginger gives it a spicy kick, and the hibiscus and rosehip tea lends a tart pucker and a red glow. You might find it difficult to stop drinking, either straight from the pot or spiked with brandy and bitters. Perhaps a double batch is in order. 1 quart apple cider, preferably fresh 8 whole cloves 8 allspice berries 3 cinnamon sticks 3 inches of fresh ginger, sliced about 1/4 inch thick 5 orange slices, including rind 4 tea bags of red hibiscus and rosehip herbal tea, such as Red Zinger or Tazo Passion 2 cups boiling water 1 tablespoons honey (optional) 9 fluid...

Spicy Coffee-braised Beef with Pink Pickled Onions

Serves 6 | start to finish: 4 1/2 hours (active time: 30 minutes) If you like your meat very spicy, more chili powder or even cayenne will turn up the heat. The pickled onion is more than just a beautiful garnish; it adds a bright dimension and balance to the deep flavors of the beef. If there is any leftover meat, shred it with a fork for a fantastic taco filling. for the braised beef 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided 2 pounds beef chuck, cut into 1” to 2” cubes 2 1/2 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste 1 medium onion, chopped 10 garlic cloves, peeled 2 cups brewed coffee 2 oranges, juiced (about 2/3 cup) 1/2 cup ruby port, or other fortified red wine 1/4 teaspoon allspice 2 teaspoons Ancho chili...

Breeding a Better Beef

Skagit River Ranch’s Secret Quest for Tenderness BY REBEKAH DENN George Vojkovich spent 15 years trying to breed the best Angus cattle possible on the land he and wife Eiko farm in the Skagit Valley. He tweaked the minerals in his soil, tinkered with the animal feed, and carefully considered the genetic crosses in his calves, all on the way to making their Skagit River Ranch beef a favorite among sustainably-minded diners and chefs. Michael Pollan is a fan. The couple's hallmark phrase is that they wouldn't sell any food they wouldn't feed their own daughter. For several years, it turns out, the couple had a secret side project that they weren't ready to feed to anyone. “Everyone knows grassfed beef is good for the...

Not Your Supermarket Spud

the Makah Ozette offers a taste of Washington history BY MEGAN HILL The Makah Ozette potato isn’t your average fingerling. The leggy, four-foot-tall plant has a wildness to it. The resulting tubers are bumpy and pockmarked with eyes but have a rich and nutty flavor. They take longer than most potatoes to reach maturity. This unruliness hints at the potato’s storied history, which began in South America, where all potatoes originated. Spanish explorers brought potatoes home to Europe around 1570 and incorporated them into their diet. From there they were carried to North America on the ships of European colonists. That’s where the Ozette’s story differs from that of your average Russet or Yukon Gold. A 2004 Washington State University (WSU) analysis showed the...

Cream of Kale Stem Soup

serves 4|start to finish: 1 hour So many recipes call for kale leaves, but what about the stems? They must be good for something. When a friend mentioned she had made cream of kale stem soup, we got curious. The method is similar to a cream of broccoli or asparagus, but uses kale steams instead (you can use a mix of broccoli stems and kale stems, for a milder flavor). This soup works best with stems from Red Russian, Siberian, or curly kale varieties that are thicker and juicer (you can sneak a few Lacinato/Dino kale stems in, but make sure they make up less than 1/4 of the full amount). This soup uses a lot of stems—store them in a...

Agate Pass Café’s Kale Apple Salad with Maple Vinaigrette

serves 4|start to finish: 45 minutes Rebecca Slattery, of Persephone Farm, has been growing kale for more than twenty years and says this kale salad, from chef and owner of Agate Pass Café Marty Bracken, is her favorite. It’s an upscale version, studded with pancetta and crunchy with radicchio and apple. This would make a sophisticated dish for a holiday luncheon or dinner. for the candied pecans: 2 cups pecans 1/2 cup powdered sugar 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper 1/2 teaspoon salt for the maple vinaigrette: 2 tablespoons minced shallot 1 tablespoon stone ground mustard 1 tablespoon champagne vinegar 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme 1/4 teaspoon fresh rosemary, minced 1 egg yolk 2 tablespoons maple syrup 3/4 cup canola oil salt and pepper to taste for the salad: 2 cups radicchio, shredded 6 cups lacinato kale (also...

All Hail The Kale

the ancient food of peasants makes a roaring comeback BY ABRA BENNETT It’s a warm, blue-skied day on Persephone Farm in Indianola and the long rows of kale are nodding agreeably to each other, even though they prefer cooler weather. Farmer and chief kale evangelist Rebecca Slattery walks through the rows, gathering a festive bouquet of the blue-green Brassicas, naming each as she picks them: White Russian, Black Magic Lacinato, Beedy’s Camden, Siberian Frill, Red Ursa, regular Lacinato (also called Cavolo Nero, Tuscan or Dinosaur Kale), Red Russian, and Dwarf Curled Siberian. Slattery’s enthusiasm for kale knows no bounds. “Kale really is my favorite vegetable,” she swears. “I like it because it’s so versatile. I feel like you can just throw it in...

Sautéed Pears with Toasted Almonds and Dried Cherries

BY ANNE LIVINGSTON serves 6 | start to finish: 15 minutes From Edible Seattle, Jan/Feb 2014 Pick up the last pears of the season and enjoy them warm and saucy with whipped cream, crème fraiche or ice cream. You can remove the skin, but some people appreciate the flavor, color and nutritional value of the peel. Firm pears such as Bosc or Anjou work best for sautéing, since they retain their shape even when caramelizing in the pan. To keep this texture, the fruit should not be overly ripe. 4 firm pears 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided 1/4 cup slivered almonds 1/4 cup dried cherries 1/4 cup ruby port 1/4 cup honey 1/4 cup water 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract Your choice of whipped cream, crème fraiche or vanilla ice...

bitter greens salad with orange cumin vinaigrette

BY ANNE LIVINGSTON serves 6 | start to finish: 15 minutes From Edible Seattle, Jan/Feb 2014 Several farmers at the market are able to coax lovely bitter greens in the winter. Find what looks good to you and match them with sunny citrus and savory cumin for a refreshing yet warming bitter bite. 3 small assorted heads of bitter greens, such as chicory, frisée, radicchio, or mustard greens 5 oranges 2 tablespoon white wine vinegar 1 small shallot, finely minced 1 teaspoon cumin 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon black pepper 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil Wash the greens thoroughly, dry and tear into bite-sized pieces. With a microplane grater, zest and juice one of the oranges. This should yield about 1/3 cup of juice. Blend together the zest, juice,...

Red Cider Zipper

BY ANNE LIVINGSTON serves 6 |start to finish: 25 minutes From Edible Seattle, Jan/Feb 2014 Fresh cider is available at many Seattle farmers’ markets throughout the winter and makes a wonderful base for this hot drink. Ginger gives it a spicy kick, and the hibiscus and rosehip tea lends a tart pucker and a red glow. You might find it difficult to stop drinking, either straight from the pot or spiked with brandy and bitters. Perhaps a double batch is in order. 1 quart apple cider, preferably fresh 8 whole cloves 8 allspice berries 3 cinnamon sticks 3 inches of fresh ginger, sliced about 1/4 inch thick 5 orange slices, including rind 4 tea bags of red hibiscus and rosehip herbal tea, such as Red Zinger or Tazo Passion 2 cups...

Little Brown Farm

one teenager plus eight kids begets a goat dairy BY TARA AUSTEN WEAVERPHOTOS BY PAOLA THOMAS Like many parents, Vicky and Tom Brown worried about their daughter as she headed into the teen years. Their main concern: boys. Their solution to the problem, however, might surprise you. They got her a goat. “We were really just trying to distract her,” says Vicky. The animal was a Future Farmers of America project, housed at a farm near their home in San Diego. Every day after work Vicky took her daughter Christine to the farm, and waited while she did her goat chores. “I was working as a CFO at the time and I would show up in my Nordstrom clothes,” Vicky laughs....

Skagit Malting

Skagit Malting is poised to change craft beer making...

Mastering the Art of Breakfast

the unexpected evolution of Marge Granola BY TARA AUSTEN WEAVER Megan Gordon never intended to start a granola company. In the early months of 2010, she was writing a business plan for a bakery and dreaming up pie recipes. Granola was the furthest thing from her mind. “I was an English teacher in California and had been laid-off,” she explains. To tide herself over, she started working in the catering division of a local restaurant. “Our offices were above the bakery and I got very little done,” Gordon admits. “I was always peering in, talking to the bakers.” Eventually they let her pick up a Sunday baking shift. “I just loved it,” Gordon remembers, “the pace, and the act of feeding people in the...

urban-foraging-jan-feb2014

Urban Foraging Jan/Feb2014 It may be hard to get out of bed this time of year, but the recipes in Whole-Grain Mornings serve as tempting enticement. Seattleite Megan Gordon owns a granola company, but her enthusiasm for breakfast does not stop at oats and almonds. Her cookbook is enough to make the grumpiest of us reconsider mornings—recipes like Triple-Coconut Quinoa Porridge, Saucy Tomato Poached Eggs with Wheat Berries and Kale and grab-and-go options like Nutty Millet Breakfast Cookies and Peanut Butter Crispy Brown Rice Bars. Each seasonal section is divided into recipes that range from busy weekday mornings to more elaborate brunch dishes (consider: Smoked Salmon Crème Fraiche Tart with Cornmeal-Millet Crust). Along with breakfast, this book will give you...

The Feast That Makes A Family

BY TAMIKO NIMURA There’s gravel crackling under our car wheels as we drive up my Auntie Nesan’s driveway. After we come to a stop, my husband Josh and I unbuckle our two little girls out of the backseat. We walk up to the house, trailing blankets and stuffed animals, and I tap on the screen door. “Happy New Year! Come in!” my eighty-something aunt answers cheerily. After hugs and exclamations (“the girls are getting so big!”), we ask if we can bring anything over to Auntie Sadako’s house, about a hundred feet away. We leave carrying a platter of barbecued teriyaki chicken and a bowl of ambrosia fruit salad, walking a path worn smooth by the tread of my aunts and uncles and...

Quinoa Crunch

4 servings | 30 minutes If you’ve never considered making your own granola, Megan says this quick Quinoa Crunch is an easy entrée into the genre. It’s a great topping for yogurt, or a tasty snack on its own. Rinse the quinoa and dry completely on a kitchen towel before starting the recipe. 1 cup raw quinoa, rinsed and drained well 1/2 cup sliced raw almonds 3 tablespoons raw sesame seeds 1 tablespoon maple syrup 1 tablespoon safflower or canola oil Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Mix all the ingredients and spread on the prepared baking sheet. Bake until toasty and fragrant, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and let cool completely. Store in...