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How to Become a Locavore

Category : CSAs, Whatcom Locavore Basics

2012 Whatcom Locavore CalendarLocavores are people who eat only locally grown food as much as possible. Personally, I try to eat only food grown in Whatcom County.

If you want to give it a try, here are some things I’ve learned over the past two years that may help you get started. Continue Reading

Squash Patties

Category : Breakfast, January, Main Dishes, Recipes, Vegetarian

Squash PattiesA friend of mine enjoys the taste of squash, but she has a hard time getting past the mushy texture. Since she grows so much squash in her garden, and often shares with me, I’ve been doing some experimenting to see if I could solve her problem and come up with some variation of cooked squash that was crispy.

This recipe was not a success from the texture point of view. However, the flavor was wonderful! Continue Reading

Cheese Cone with Apple Slices

Category : Appetizers, Holidays, Recipes, Sauces and Dips

Cheese ConeYears ago I clipped a recipe for two kinds of cheese cones from a magazine. They were called “cones” because nuts are used to decorate the cheese dip so they look similar to a pine cone.

This is a locavore adaptation of one of those cheese cone recipes. Serve it with fresh slices of apples to dip into it. Try using Honeycrisp apples, as they don’t brown as easily as other common apple varieties, or put the slices in 4 cups water with 1/2 tsp salt dissolved in it. Let soak for about 5 minutes, then drain. Continue Reading

Smoked Salmon Potato Galettes

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Category : Appetizers, Holidays, Recipes, Sauces and Dips

Smoked Salmon Potato GaletteFresh caught local wild salmon is one of the great gastronomical perks of living in the Pacific Northwest. Smoking adds an extra special layer of flavor, but can also add to the cost (unless you know a fisherman). Fortunately, it doesn’t take much smoked salmon to enhance the flavor of otherwise mildly flavored dishes. Continue Reading

Bubble and Squeak – and Rutabagas!

Category : Breakfast, December, Main Dishes, Recipes, Seasonal Menu Ideas, Side Dishes, Vegetarian

Bubble and SqueakEvergreen Station (Ferndale) at the Bellingham Farmers Market often has really beautiful organic vegetables–not just high quality but also visually lovely. Last weekend I was particularly delighted by their large rutabagas. The skins were perfectly smooth, the color varied from pale gold to purple, and the size was enormous. I bought a single 2-pound root, not sure how I would use it. Continue Reading

Savory Stuffed Pumpkin for the Holidays

Category : Holidays, Main Dishes, Recipes, Side Dishes

Savory Stuffed PumpkinColorful leaves, a chilly bite in the air, howling gales and horizontal rain–ah! Fall in Whatcom County, just the way we like it! And at the Farmers Market and farms all around the County, what says “Fall is here and winter holidays are coming!” more than beautiful orange pumpkins? Continue Reading

Shiitake and Cheese Omelet

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Category : Breakfast, CSAs, Main Dishes, Recipes, Vegetarian

Shiitake Cheese OmeletThis omelet recipe is a perfect example of incredible local flavors. Cascadia Farms shiitake mushrooms are the highlight–they make nonlocal shiitakes seem like tasteless paste. I’m certain you’ll savor this dish.

We’re fortunate to have a diverse variety of locally made cheese from which to choose. I use local goudas a lot because they often come flavored with herbs or spices. For this recipe, though, I used a plain gouda made from goat milk. The goat milk flavor was all that was needed to balance the eggs. Continue Reading

Broccoli Romanesco With Sage Browned Butter

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Category : December, Recipes, Side Dishes, Vegetarian

Broccoli RomanescoFresh picked produce is beautiful to look at, which is one of the things I enjoy so much about cooking with locally grown food. However, some vegetables are so visually striking that they stand out on the produce racks. Broccoli romanesco (also called Roman cauliflower or coral broccoli) is one of those vegetables with a remarkable–even bizarre–appearance. Continue Reading

Apple Cider Stew

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Category : Main Dishes, Recipes

Apple Cider StewThere’s nothing like the taste of the first fresh apples of the season! We have an opportunity to taste a remarkable array of literally hundreds of apple varieties every year at the Cloud Mountain Farm Center’s Fall Fruit Festival.

Apples can be eaten and enjoyed in dozens of ways ranging from raw as a snack to cooked into delicious apples pies or tarts. A quick and easy way to add intense apple flavor to cooked dishes is to use fresh apple cider. Continue Reading

Roasted Tomatillo Salsa

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Category : October, Sauces and Dips

Roasted Tomatillo Salsa“I have a lot of tomatillos in my garden,” said my friend Thurid Clark. “You should do an article about them.”

Since I’d never tried cooking with tomatillos, I was immediately intrigued. Thurid is an amazing gardener, and I knew her tomatillos would be wonderful. She gave me a bag of them to take home so I could experiment.

Tomatillos, or Mexican tomatoes, are a staple food in Mexico. They are used as the base of a classic green salsa, and are used in many other kinds of meat and vegetable sauces, too.  Continue Reading

Peperonata

Category : Recipes, Side Dishes, Vegetarian

PeperonataTuscan country cuisine is a wonderful style of cooking. The flavors have a special place in my heart, and bring back fond memories of trips to Siena, Italy, and the surrounding hill towns. Our first visit was when I took my daughter there to celebrate her graduation from high school. We fell in love with the beauty of the countryside, the incredible art, the warmth of the people, and  the “slow food” approach to meals. Continue Reading

Potato Leek Soup

Category : Holidays, Recipes, Soups, Vegetarian

I really love the mild onion flavor of leeks, and I also lovePotato Leek Soup potatoes–all kinds of potatoes. Naturally, one of my favorite fall soups is Potato Leek Soup.

It’s a soup that excels for versatility. It can be served hot or cold. It can be rustic and chunkly or creamy in texture. Pureed smooth and with cream added it becomes vichyssoise, a soup traditionally served chilled. Continue Reading

Quick Pickled Beets and Eggs

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Category : Recipes, Salads, Side Dishes, Vegetarian

Pickled Beets and EggsMy personal favorite pickled food is pickled beet eggs. As a child, when my grandmother opened a jar of her pickled beets, she would remove beets to serve and then fill the jar space with peeled hard boiled eggs. By the next day, when we sliced the eggs open, the colors were gorgeous! The egg whites were deep purple on the outside, shading to white around the bright yellow yolks (see photo). Beautiful! The flavor was delightful, too–the tang of pickled beets balanced with the mild taste of hard-boiled eggs. Perfect!

As soon as I spotted the first fresh beets at the Farmers Market this year, I was eager to get them home and into pickling juice as quickly as possible. Because I planned to eat them in the next few days, I used a “refrigerator pickle” recipe. Continue Reading