Blasted Spring Vegetable Salad

BY JESS THOMSON Serves 6 Start to finish: 15 minutes From Edible Seattle May/June 2010 Seared in a hot oven and lifted with a garlicky chive vinaigrette, this simple spring salad highlights the season's best vegetables. Add a handful of fiddleheads or chopped garlic scapes, if they're still available. Recipe 1 pound thick asparagus, cut into 3" pieces 1/2 pound snap or snow peas 2 cups fava beans (shelled and peeled) 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil Salt and freshly ground pepper 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard 1 or 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped (to taste) 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar 1/3 cup finely chopped fresh chives Steps Preheat the oven to 500 degrees. Pat the asparagus, peas, and fava beans dry if necessary, then mix in a bowl with 1 tablespoon of the olive...

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Direct and Permanent

Farmers and investors take action with farmland preservation programs BY HEIDI BROADHEAD On an unseasonably sunny day in late January, farmer Joel Blais leans on a metal gate next to a stately, weathered red barn. Thirteen sows are lounging around and munching hay in a nearby loafing shed. Blais looks happy in his rubber boots, but a bit distracted and overwhelmed. "When I got here this morning, six of my sows were out," he says. Blais has rounded up five sows already, and the last one is still chowing down on a pile of organic grain in a corner of the barn. He rigged up a sort of low-level barbed-wire chute between the barn and the shed. The remaining vagrant wanders out of the...

The Big Red Beast-Rhubarb!

The rhubarb plant in my garden is a monster not easily tamed. I cut it back and it just grows larger, shooting up new stalks and even more enormous leaves, smothering my new dill shoots that are doing their best to find the sun....

The Cheese Vixen

A Dream Comes True at the Calf & Kid BY BETHANY JEAN CLEMENT PHOTO BY KELLY O In which Edible Seattle visits the home of a Pacific Northwest food notable and reports on their refrigerator's contents, their menagerie, the adjective "billy-goat," and the virtues of sometimes spitting instead of swallowing. THE SUBJECT: Sheri LaVigne, the owner of the Calf & Kid, Seattle's new cheese purveyor. As part of the renovation of the triangular block at Pine and Melrose on Capitol Hill, the Calf & Kid is in good company, including flower-and-produce shop Marigold and Mint, butcher Rain Shadow Meats, and Sitka & Spruce. Sheri moved here from Brooklyn four years ago with a cheese dream, the realization of which she chronicled on the Calf...

Green Side

BY JESS THOMSON Spring: It means birds chirping. Bulbs bursting. New baby produce sprouting proudly out of the ground. It means long, lazy weekend days spent enjoying the earth's labors in the sun. (At least, that's my fantasy.) But in Seattle, May and June more often mean rain, which favors farmers, but leaves us aching for summer sun. Soothe summer cravings with comfort foods created just for the season—try an earthy vegetarian galette studded with baby carrots, turnips, and potatoes, paired with a quick, warm spring vegetable salad. Curl up with a hot and sour soup made with produce on the market tables right now, or a warm bowl of bucatini, twisted up with a quick morel mushroom sauce. Embrace spring, in...

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The Pizza Composer

Delancey's owner talks music theory and vegetables BY ASHLEY GARTLAND PHOTO BY LARA FERRONI When you eat at Delancey, you feel like you're enjoying an intimate meal at a close friend's home—only in this case the friends are composer-turned-pizzaiolo Brandon Pettit and his wife, local author Molly Wizenberg. Those who know Molly, or at least know of her through her award-winning Orangette blog and book A Homemade Life, likely followed this food-loving couple's romance from their first dates to their trip down the aisle.  And if they read that blog faithfully, they might also have known that the musician Molly married harbored a pizza obsession, one that led him to open a pizzeria on a quiet Ballard block last August. Brandon's fascination with pizza dough...

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The Magical World of Bridget Parkhill

Motherhood, mozzarella and the search for satisfaction BY JULIA WAYNE PHOTO BY LARA FERRONI   Bridget's cheeses are magical. It's not just their infinite variety. Or their flavors, or mouthfeel, or textures. It's all of those things, but mostly, it's Bridget. You can love her cheeses without knowing her, but the more you know about her, the better they taste. Although Bridget never makes excuses or apologizes for her life, she has had her fair share of hardship. A repeated breast cancer survivor, Bridget is also the mother of an autistic, agoraphobic son named Joey, with obsessive compulsive disorder. When he was a child, she was told he would never walk, speak, write, or function even close to normally. With great love and determination to...

Boundary Bay Brewery

Since opening almost 15 years ago in downtown Bellingham, proprietor Ed Bennett and his brewers have been tinkering with the brewery's recipes — and plan continual evaluation of the brews. And that has given Boundary Bay plenty of regional and national acclaim....

Sea What?

The salty snack that hides in plain sight BY LAUREL MILLER When the likes of Jerry Traunfeld and Matt Dillon feature sea beans on their menus, it's a sign that an ingredient has achieved serious street cred. Yet sea beans remain the Greta Garbo of wild foods: alluring, yet shrouded in mystery. And as it turns out, sea beans could have taught Garbo a thing or two about maintaining privacy. The first thing a good forager needs to know is whether a permit is necessary. So, I contacted the Department of Fish and Wildlife, which allocates licenses for recreational seaweed harvest. My call went as follows: Laurel Miller: Hi, I'm calling for an article with Edible Seattle, to check on what kind of permit...

Ballard Bees

Just when you thought the urban farming movement couldn't get any, well, farmier, along came something new for people to buzz about. Right on the heels of parking strip gardens and backyard chickens comes the third generation of city-based sustainability: honey bees....

Read Local

BY KIM RICKETTS Great new books by local authors are arriving this season, full of advice on what to plant, or cook and, most importantly, how to celebrate the variety and richness of our local foods. The Informed Gardener Blooms Again, by horticulturist Linda Chalker-Scott, is packed with straightforward advice that debunks common gardening myths: you'll use it regularly through the growing season when new issues arise. Master Gardener/Librarian Valerie Easton's new book teaches us to "have a beautiful, productive garden" and-- here's the kicker-- "time to enjoy it." Do you ever lament that you'd love to garden more-- but don't have the time? Easton has the plan for you in The New Low Maintenance Garden. Now that you have that garden...

The Cheese Plate: Vegging Out

BY JULIA WAYNE To non-vegetarians, cheese is cheese. It falls into the general "I can eat every kind of food, and cheese is a food, so I'll eat that too" category. But for vegetarians, it's a little more challenging. Many cheeses contain animal products--specifically, animal rennet, often derived from the fourth stomach chamber (the abomasum) of unweaned calves. This chamber contains a proteolytic enzyme known as chymosin, which coagulates the milk, turning it into curds and whey. While I would normally ignore so many big, scientific words in a row, the basic gist is that cheese isn't always the passive milk product you might think it is. Several alternative sources of rennet are available: vegetable extracts from plants such as nettle and thistle...

Readers to Eaters

The fabulous Bellevue-based mobile bookstore founded by Philip Lee and his wife June features a huge selection of books about growing food, eating food, making food, people who founded food movements, and chefs who make food you probably can't afford. If they served food at Readers to Eaters, I'd move in tomorrow. Founded in 2009 by a former Condé Nast publisher who also co-founded a children's book publishing company, R2E seeks to increase food literacy in the Puget Sound area. They are available for school visits and have a program called "Good Eats & Good Reads" which includes trips to farms and markets and teaches kids about where their food comes from and why they should care. Additionally, through his stint...

FareStart Cookies and Snoqualmie Gourmet

BY JULIA WAYNE If you love FareStart as much as we do (and judging from the overwhelming votes for their 2010 Local Hero award, you do), you'll be thrilled to learn that they have partnered with Snoqualmie Gourmet Ice Cream to create a brand new flavor: Caramel Ginger Snap, featuring cookies baked by FareStart. Snoqualmie Gourmet did a great thing in sourcing the cookies from a nonprofit organization, and it's amazing how tasty good business practices can be. This partnership is a great training opportunity for students, teaching them that their hard work will be recognized by an entire community of ice cream lovers, and it also provides an important new funding opportunity for FareStart. Scoop up a pint from select PCCs, Town...

The Accidental Vegetarian

It's tempting to claim sugar cane as my favorite vegetable, but that's selling my palate—and the possibilities of vegetables—short. This time of year, every week brings a new pleasure to the market tables, and a new pleasure to my dinner plate. Peas barely make it home the first week I find them; I eat them straight out of the bag like bright green popcorn. This time of year, I rarely think about eating meat, and I don't miss it—fresh vegetables and the first fruits are so compelling that days will have gone by before I realize I've become an accidental vegetarian. With that idea in mind, we've gone meatless for this issue. Not that I won't be having folks over for...

Canning 101

EXCERPTED FROM URBAN PANTRY BY AMY PENNINGTON (SKIPSTONE 2010) This is a step-by-step guide to water-bath canning at home. There are a few options to choose from, but all work well. Be sure to set up your jars and workspace beforehand so you can establish a rhythm. Also, be mindful of the processing times given in each recipe. Looking for recipes to go with Amy's Canning 101? You can find several in our recipe index, and new ones in every issue of edibleSeattle--look for Amy's Modern Pantry column, which kicked off in May of 2010. CLEANING JARS Wash your jars and lids in hot soapy water and set them to dry completely on a rack or on a clean dish towel. PREPARING JARS Glass jars and lids...