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fall 2014 issue 13 design & content Cara Livermore sales & shipping Bob Lawton editors Kate Dollarhyde Andrew Kornfeld special thanks to Olga at Smugtown Mushrooms Rachel at Go Go Junktion

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3 Dakota Kim is a food-obsessed writer working on a burlesque cookbook called Bombshell Bakers. She divides her time roasting CSA kohlrabe in her tiny Brooklyn kitchen, hunting reishi mushrooms with the New York Mycological Society, and foraging for black raspberries on her best friend’s farm upstate. Aileen and Keara McGraw are 21-year-old Chicago-based twin sisters. Aileen writes, Keara illustrates and both love the work that compassionate ideas unlock. They share a passion for nut butter, proven by matching peanut plant tattoos. Alex is a 25 year-old vegan with a passion for food and fun. She enjoys meeting with her book club, experimenting with new raw recipes, and going on adventures. Beatrice is a freelance writer and photographer living, instagrammin and brewing iced tea in New York City. Some day she’ll have the self control to make peach pie, instead of eating them all the second she gets home. Charlotte is a Londoner living in the US. A career in vintage homewares opened her eyes to the aesthetic delights of the kitchen, in turn unleashing her inner foodie.

4 Elizabeth is a 25 year old vegan cook and nanny. Adventures in nature, sipping tea, getting lost in a book, playing the handpan and picnicing with friends are her favourite past times. She loves creating new recipes and cooking for anyone who visits. Emily is a young writer and photographer with a passion for cooking and eating nourishing whole foods. She’s also, self-confessed, a tad Instagram obsessed. Jessica is a 25 year-old pastry making, food writing, adventure seeking woman. Food has always been a source of inspiration and expression, constantly serving as a guide throughout her life. Jessica is a Berlin based New Zealander who loves plants and the endless creations you can cook with them.

CHICKPEA MAGAZINE fall 2014 Kathie lives in northwest Montana with her soulmate Jeff. When not writing or teaching she can be found outside, most likely in the garden or running through the woods and streets of her small town. Laura is a 25-year-old vegan restaurant manager and vegan food blogger. She loves hiking, running and spending time outside with her dog and boyfriend. Laurie is a Niagara-based cookbook author and food writer who is currently studying and building programs in community music and arts. As someone with celiac disease and is a vegan, she often gets asked “what do you eat?” and her answer, usually, is “really good cake.” Megan is a 29-year-old Powell River, B.C.-based freelance writer who balances her time in front of a laptop and in front of a cook top. Her biggest challenges come from trying to please the taste buds of her four picky step-kids.

Penelope loves exploring the Michigan outdoors with her husband and their two children. When she’s not outside she can be found in the kitchen, playing with local food and new recipes. Stephanie Redcross is the Managing Director of Vegan Mainstream, a marketing consulting company that provides marketing solutions to vegan and vegetarian businesses. VM is not only fueled by extensive experience, knowledge and expertise, but also by a passion for seeing conscious brands thrive. Valentina is a 23 year old graphic and web designer who started blogging about veggie food after moving Born in Warsaw, based in Orlando, Marta Madigan is a food and travel writer serving American dishes to Poles and Polish dishes to Americans. She and her husband Jay are both potato eaters.

Amanda's appetite for most things is voracious, including her love for guacamole, television crime dramas, Malbec, and all things consumable in bowls. A writer, she lives in Brooklyn and spends all her free time cooking and planning what to eat next.


back and forth between the Italian countryside and New York. She loves talking to random people on the metro more than she probably should, and she is on a quest to dispel her hate for cilantro. Born in Toronto and based in Munich, Sasha Gora works as a curator and a writer who pens articles about contemporary art, museums and food culture. She takes breakfast very seriously and rarely turns down the opportunity to add maple syrup to a recipe.


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words by Laurie Sadowski When leaves turn vibrant shades of analogous reds and the smell of cinnamon wafts from the oven, fall is officially in the air, and chances are your daily menus are made up of warming stews, pumpkin breads, hot cocoa, and slow-baked applesauce. It’s near-impossible to neglect the familiar flavors, those spices that are synonymous with warmth, comfort, and the cooler season. When you’re outfitting the pantry this fall, consider building on those few already on tap. With some simple spice know-how—combined with ideas on how to use them— you’ll expand your taste buds—and mind—to a world of flavor and culinary inspiration.



Before you get started, keep these tips in mind for ensuring you get the most mileage out of your newly stocked pantry. Don’t buy bulk: Most spices lose pungency quickly, especially if purchased ground. If buying ground spice is more convenient, store in the freezer to retain freshness. Go exploring: Because the freshness factor can be questionable, seek reputable spices at the local farmers’ market, online, and in stores that know the spice’s turn-around time. Give them some heat: Whole spices greatly benefit from toasting in a skillet before use, elevating the flavor to add more oomph to your masala and other dishes. Grind on demand: It’s best to grind whole spices as you need them using a mortar and pestle or in an inexpensive coffee grinder. Just don’t use it for your coffee beans, too, unless you have a hankering for cumin-spiked coffee.

Fulfill your fall seasoning needs with more than just cinnamon; these common contenders all have sweet and savory claims to fame with countless ways to use them.



Also called the Jamaica pepper or pimento, allspice is a dried berry whose name pays thanks to its combined taste of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves.

Cardamom comes in black and green varieties, both which have a unique, fresh, bright, and lightly floral flavor. Black cardamom has a hint of smokiness.

Its two most common uses couldn’t be more different: pumpkin pie spice and jerk seasoning (see Must-Know Mixes). A common substitution is equal parts cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves.

Cardamom is notorious for losing its potency quickly, so it’s best to purchase in pods. In fact, cardamom can last for years in the pod, so grinding per use will increase its longevity. Ten pods equals about 1 1/2 teaspoons ground.

Often in conjunction with the other classic fall spices, allspice seldom stands alone in recipes—but that doesn’t mean it can’t. Skillet Almond Butter and Pear Sandwiches: Brush vegan buttery spread on two slices of bread. Sprinkle with allspice. Fill with thinly-sliced pears and thickly spread almond butter, and pan fry on both sides until golden. Serve warm. The flavor is strong, so start small by adding whole berries to pots of rice and beans before cooking, or sprinkling the ground version on winter squash. Wild Mushroom Stew: Soak dried wild mushrooms for about 1 hour. Drain, reserve liquid, then finely chop the mushrooms. Fry some onions, garlic, and fresh mushrooms. Add the dried mushrooms, soaking liquid, and extra broth. Simmer for 20 minutes, then season with ground allspice, salt, and pepper. Add pureed cooked white beans, toss in a few handfuls of baby spinach, and serve warm.

I t ’s commonly found in baked goods from Nordic countries (such as Finnish sweet bread), and desserts throughout the Middle East, but also wonderful in an all-American pie. Early Fall Peach-Plum Pie: Toss sliced peaches and plums with sugar, tapioca starch, and about 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom, then put in an unbaked pastry crust. Top with a second crust, crimp the edges, then sprinkle a mixture of coarse sugar and cardamom atop the unbaked top crust. Bake at 425 °F for 20 minutes, then 375 °F until golden and bubbly. Pairing well with citrus, other warm spices, and curries of all kinds, cardamom is a familiar ingredient in spice mixes and can be used in conjunction with other rich ingredients. Orange-Cardamom Rice: Add about 1 tablespoon grated orange peel and 4 crushed green cardamom pods to each cup dry basmati rice, cooking it in vegetable broth or water. Serve with Indian-inspired curry.


You might not know there are two types of the barkbased spice—and “real” cinnamon is rather uncommon. Ceylon is the bona fide bark, naturally sweeter and more subtle in flavor than Cassia, which is much stronger and inexpensive. Cassia is frequently found on the grocer’s shelves, and while some seek Ceylon for its health benefits, both varieties can be used in cooking and baking.

Steep cinnamon sticks in everything from tea to pudding to sauces to stews, discarding before serving. For ground cinnamon, toast sticks and grind on demand when needed. You’ve loaded it in cinnamon rolls and sprinkled it in your applesauce, but the world of cinnamon is much more diverse. Salted Vanilla Cinnamon Caramel Sauce: Dissolve 1 cup sugar with 1/4 cup water in a saucepan. Boil, without stirring, until deep amber. Whisk in 3/4 cup full-fat coconut milk, a few spoonfuls of vegan buttery spread, a generous pinch of sea salt, a dash of vanilla, and a few shakes of cinnamon. Indian curries, slow-roasted squash, Moroccan tajines…the fragrant sweetness of cinnamon adds richness to sauces and balances strong-tasting winter roots. Braised Red Wine Tofu: Pan fry thick-sliced extra-firm tofu, then add 2 cups red wine, 2 tablespoons each of maple syrup and tamari, chopped fresh ginger and onions, and a couple dashes of cinnamon. Cover and let cook for about 10 minutes. Serve on polenta.


Cloves are dried flower buds from an evergreen tree and in their whole form resemble tiny nails. Whole cloves are often “studded” into ingredients before cooking, while ground cloves are familiar in spicy baked goods. Strong in flavor with a warm, sweet taste, cloves can easily overpower a dish if used in excess. Be mindful, adding only a little at time to taste if experimenting.

Choose whole coriander, toasting and grinding before using. It’s often found in Indian and Mexican dishes, as well as in pickle brine.

Common to gingerbread and pumpkin pie, cloves are rarely the star of the dish, and, like everything in life, are a winner with chocolate.

Because it pairs well with ginger, add coriander to your next ginger-based dessert to give it some pop before venturing into an exclusively-coriander dish.

Mocha Biscotti: In a plain biscotti base that yields about 20 medium biscotti, add 1 tablespoon instant espresso, 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves, and 3/4 cup each bittersweet chocolate chips and chopped pecans. Bitter chocolate and espresso offset the sweetness of cloves, and the unique combination delivers an unexpected taste.

Glazed Pistachio Coriander Shortbread: At the holidays, whip up your classic shortbread, adding chopped pistachios and crushed coriander seeds. Drizzle with a lemon glaze.

Cloves are frequently found in Indian, Mexican, and Vietnamese cuisine (a musthave in phở!) and add depth to tomato-based dishes while balancing acidity. Mole-Inspired Sauce: Process dried ancho chiles, onion, garlic, and tomatoes, along with ground almonds, unsweetened cocoa powder, and equal amounts of cinnamon, cloves, coriander, oregano, and cumin in a food processor. Adjust seasonings to taste, then simmer on the stovetop until thick and rich.


Coriander has a light, lemony flavor that plays well with ginger and cumin. In some recipes, be mindful that coriander sometimes means fresh cilantro, which comes from the same plant, but tastes completely different.

Common to curries and garam masala (see Must-Know Mixes), coriander can brighten everyday dishes, too. Lemon-Tahini Broccoli: Roast a tray of broccoli florets and sliced red onions. Whisk together a few generous dollops of tahini, squeezes of lemon, mashed roasted garlic, salt, pepper, and shakes of coriander to taste. Toss to mix. Serve warm.

Ground ginger is the pulverized, dried root of a ginger bulb that adds a fragrant, floral zing that’s spicy and familiar. Use dried ginger for those sweet dishes, saving fresh for savory. For DIY dried ginger, peel, thinly slice, and dehydrate the root until completely dry. Cool, then grind to a powder. Gingersnaps, gingerbread—that’s already covered. Too often paired with molasses, ginger needs to shine bright on its own. Ginger Cookies: Swap maple syrup for molasses in a gingersnap cookie, doubling the spice and adding candied ginger for good measure. In a pinch, you can substitute 2 tablespoons grated ginger for 1 teaspoon dried ginger. Using both dried and fresh ginger allows for a unique twist in traditional recipes. White Chili: Wake up white chili with both dried and fresh ginger, using a base of cooked cannellini beans, chickpeas, fresh poblano peppers, corn, and fresh cilantro.


Mace is actually the dried covering of nutmeg, and though it has a similar taste profile, the flavor is not as prominent. It’s aromatic and sharp, but warming, and frequently used in both sweet and savory applications. If you love nutmeg but find it overpowering, substitute the same amount of mace. Because mace gets bitter if overcooked, add it to the end of cooking time, and avoid using it to top baked goods if they’ve yet to go in the oven. Its flavor complements creamy desserts like ice cream and custard. Homestyle baked goods such as doughnuts or cake pair well, too. Skillet Apple Sticky Rice: Make sticky rice with brown sugar and coconut milk, adding a dash of mace at the end. Serve warm with apples sautéed in coconut oil and brown sugar.

Use mace in dishes where nutmeg and black pepper accentuate the ingredients, especially with creamy bases. Make a roux with sorghum or whole wheat flour, nondairy milk, and olive oil. Add mace and sage to taste, mix with thinly sliced potatoes and parsnips, then transfer to a pie plate. Sprinkle with walnuts, flour, and olive oil that have been pulsed together in the food processor. Bake at 350 °F until bubbly.

Sweet but distinct, this relation to mace is a seed from a New Guinea fruit, adding a pungent kick and warming flavor to sweet and savory dishes.

Peppercorn, the world’s most popular spice, comes in three main varieties: green, black, and white.

Look for whole seeds that are light brown and about an inch long. Use a fine grater to grate when needed. If the flavor’s too strong, swap it 1-for-1 with mace.

Look for black peppercorn of the Tellicherry variety—the strongest in flavor. Investing in a pepper grinder with adjustable crush settings allows you to control how fine or coarse for grinding. While black peppercorn plays an all-purpose role in the

Like mace, its works well with creamy dishes, but also has that comfort food factor to it. In other words: doughnuts…dipped in egg nog. Nutmeg Snickerdoodles: This crispy, chewy, soft cookie typically rolled in cinnamon-sugar gets a whole new life when freshly- grated nutmeg is swapped for half the amount of cinnamon.

Nutmeg is frequently found in meatbased dishes, but also pairs well with squashes and greens, especially when doused with a creamy sauce. Creamy Kohlrabi and Kale Soup: Fry onion, garlic, and chopped kohlrabi. Add a grated starchy potato and unsweetened coconut beverage for extra creaminess and accentuate the earthiness of kale with a pinch of nutmeg. Serve with crusty bread.


kitchen, the rich, milder flavor of white complements creamy soups and gratins. P l a ying the main role in traditional Chai tea mixes, peppercorn pairs well with other spices to add a kick to desserts and baked goods. Chocolate Chai Cream: Refrigerate one 14oz can of full-fat coconut milk overnight. Scrape out the hardened cream, whip until fluffy, then mix in 1/2 teaspoon of Chai Tea blend (see Must-Know Mixes) and 2 tablespoons each cocoa powder and icing sugar. Top on slowbaked pears and a garnish with toasted almonds.

Peppercorn is used widely for all-purpose seasoning, but is seldom the emphasis. Use it on a blank canvas like tofu to really let it shine. Peppercorn-Sesame Tofu: Rub slabs of pressed tofu with toasted sesame oil, season with salt, then coat in a 2-to-1 mixture of sesame seeds and coarsely ground peppercorns. Fry in a skillet until crisp on both sides.


Too often, pre-made mixes have anti-caking agents or other fillers and their shelf life can be questionable. It’s easy and fresher to make your own, and because the ratios aren’t set in stone, you can adjust to suit your tastes and create a custom collection with what you have on hand. Use ground versions of each spice unless otherwise indicated. Mix 1/4 cup black pepper, 3 tablespoons ginger, 2 tablespoons each cinnamon and cardamom, and 1 1/2 teaspoons each cloves and nutmeg. To brew, use 1/2 teaspoon mix per 1 cup water and 1 black tea bag. Mix 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1 tablespoon allspice, 2 teaspoons dried thyme, 1 teaspoon dried scotch bonnet peppers, and 1/4 teaspoon each cinnamon, cloves, and cumin. Mix 2 cups cocoa powder, 1 1/2 cups sugar, the seeds from 1 vanilla bean, 2 teaspoons cinnamon, 3/4 teaspoons cardamom, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Use 1 tablespoon mix for each cup nondairy milk, adding additional sugar to taste. Mix 1/4 cup cinnamon, 4 teaspoons each nutmeg and ginger, 2 teaspoons allspice, and 1/2 teaspoon cloves. For Apple Pie Spice, nix ginger and cloves. Toast 1/4 cup each whole coriander and cumin seeds, 2 tablespoons each green cardamom pods and black peppercorns, 1 tablespoon whole cloves, 4 cinnamon sticks, 3 star anise, 2 bay leaves. Cool, add 1/4 of a whole nutmeg, and grind to a powder. Laurie Sadowski’s love of food began at a young age, but her creativity in the kitchen began when diagnosed with celiac disease. Already a vegan, her love of food, health, and helping others drove her to become an avid food writer and cookbook author. Her books, The Allergy-Free Cook Bakes Bread (2011), The Allergy-Free Cook Bakes Cakes and Cookies (2013), and The Allergy-Free Cook Makes Pies and Desserts (2014) are devoted to gluten, dairy, egg, and soyfree vegan baked goods that taste just like the real thing. She is currently working as a food writer and studying/working in arts in healthcare.



intro by Beatrice Helman New York City is really, really big. Big and full of people asking each other “where should I eat?” We talked to the minds, managers, and chefs behind some of the best vegan spots in the city to see what they’re eating, making, and thinking. Stir fry won the post-workday dinner favorite award, and trial and error emerged as the favorite recipe testing method. This is a tight-knit community that supports its own. It spans from Queens to Brooklyn and encompasses a variety of cuisines that all share one feature: their veganism. It’s a life philosophy shared by the people behind these restaurants, whether they be vegan, vegetarian, or just veggie-friendly at work. These remarkable human beings are marked by their love - for good people, good food, and the city they live in.







Interview by Dakota Kim Personal chef Soozee Nguyen upstyles vegan and vegetarian dishes with her globally-inflected, Vietnamese-influenced whole foods. Raised by immigrant parents in Dallas and self-trained through hard work in vegan restaurants, Nguyen’s private chef business, Soozee Cooks, combines the best of disparate worlds into international comfort food. When she’s not cooking, Nguyen DJs and cuts hair in Brooklyn.

International vegetarian comfort whole food is my favorite food to cook. You can really create a lot of flavors and bring a lot out in just pure vegetables and grains and whole foods. It’s purer and makes you feel better. Some of the mock meats are hard to digest and you get more nutrients out of eating whole foods. I believe in it. My thing is cooking at a restaurant-quality level, but in a home setting. It’s approachable but still elevated.

My parents are both cooks, and I grew up with Vietnamese cuisine. My favorites were pho and egg rolls, crispy rolls we wrap up in greenleaf lettuce that we eat with pickled carrot and daikon, and fresh herbs like cilantro and scallions. That’s something really important in our culture, the way we eat it and wrap it and dip it in sweet bean sauce that’s tangy. After I moved away from home I really missed their cooking and no matter which restaurant I went to it couldn’t compare. I decided to learn more about my culture and their cooking and put my own flair on it. My parents cook by taste and so when I speak to them or call them, they say use a pinch of this and a pinch of that, but it’s so


hard to cook that way.

Sometimes I’ll do research online and then when I’m cooking it, I’ll go by the tastebuds I grew up with and compare it to what I tasted that my parents cooked. Then I make it vegan or vegetarian. A lot of Vietnamese food is stir-frying and braising. You can braise tofu in a clay pot and it draws out a lot of the flavors. Marinating a long time is also important in Vietnamese cooking. I sometimes marinate tofu in a vegan fish sauce I developed, since fish sauce is one of the main ingredients in Vietnamese cooking. It works pretty well because it’s a pungent, salty taste that completes a dish. It depends on what you’re making, but the base can have chilies, coconut water, coconut juice. We also like to caramelize a lot.

I keep recipes in my journal with notes on how I changed them or made something a little different. The more you do it, the more you figure out what pairings go well together. I do a lot of research online -- I’m a very visual person so I look at a lot of images online.

I only very recently realized this culinary dream. I was actually living in California, working a 9-to-5 office job, cutting hair and DJing on the side. But my weekends were focused on whipping up a big feast and inviting my friends over to share with them. After I moved away I missed that and made a point to keep that tradition going. Eventually I started to question my own career path, and would ask myself, “What would I want to wake up to every morning, even

if I didn’t get paid?” Sure enough, the answer was cooking. So I took a leap of faith and switched gears. I really wanted to go to culinary school but working my way through New York kitchens seemed to be the only affordable route for me.

I spent a year and a half at a start-up cafe and then moved on to work in a vegan restaurant called Caravan, where I met Chef Neal Harden. I was really fascinated by his cooking and would find every opportunity to shimmy my way into the kitchen to talk food with him. It took me a while, but I eventually worked up the courage to ask if I could be his intern on my days off. I really got to know Neal in those limited hours. He taught me a lot about technique, whole foods, and the rewards of making everything from scratch. But most importantly, maybe without him realizing, I learned about staying humble as a chef. We became good friends after that and he eventually became one of my hair clients, too [laughs].

A year after Caravan, I interviewed at a vegan diner called Champs where I worked up from prep cook to kitchen manager and head chef. It was high-volume, fast cooking. And in two years’ time, I got the full kitchen shebang – managing the kitchen, leading the line, creating the menu, and hosting monthly popups. I’m really thankful for that opportunity. It was a great fast track in learning what the business entailed. It also gave me the confidence to keep going.


I’ve been working at Pickle Shack with Chef Neal Harden since it opened and am so thankful that I can learn about seasonal, local whole foods every day and be surrounded by very passionate friends. It’s been an incredible inspiration for my private cheffing. I’d like to open up my own spot. It would definitely be an international and Vietnamese menu, vegan and homestyle. Community is a big thing. I want to have a place where I can bring everyone together to enjoy one mutual experience, passion, and love of food. I’d also like to start a popup tour where I travel to different states and guest chef at different venues, doing a one night dinner popup transporting you to a different country. There would be vegan fare that complements a movie we’ll watch together. I did that as a DJ and now that my passion is food, I’d like to do the same thing with food. I’d like to work with ingredients that are local to the state I’m in.



words & photos by Valentina Solfrini



“Add a tiny piece of bouillon cube, as well,” said my mom as she was teaching me how to make her delicious tomato sauce, one that I had always thought was absolutely unrivaled. “It adds a lot to the final result. I always crumble in a quarter of a cube.” My mom has worked in restaurants and hotels for all of her life. She is a goddess of pasta sauces and fruit tarts. Her cooking has always been based on natural ingredients and vegetables picked right from our garden. Yet her secret ingredient for tomato sauce is a processed chunk of questionable origin. Life is funny like that. Let’s be honest: bouillon cubes are essentially the trick every cook will deny using and tries to hide at the very back of the fridge if they know they’ll have guests. Bouillon cubes are nothing more than little packed cubes of MSG, chemical flavorings, trans fats and parts of animals which should remain unnamed. The words ‘spices’ or ‘natural flavorings’ can mean many, many things. But, as the college student within ourselves kindly loves to remind us, they are useful. They help add a quick enhancement to most things—not only soups, but sauces and condiments as well. Sure, we could try and search for an organic cube that contains as few processed ingredients as possible; the market is brimming with vegan and gluten-free options as well as it is brimming with junk, after all. Or we could try making our own and be in complete control of what we put in it. Making homemade bouillon cubes or bouillon paste is extremely easy. It requires about an hour and a half of your time, but overall very little effort. You can also add a wedge of pumpkin when in season, or add other herbs like sage and rosemary if you like them (just don’t add too much—these two make a strong statement.) Additionally, you can easily double the recipe and not be bothered with it for a while after you’ve made it once. It will make your kitchen smell like delicious vegetables and it won’t reek of stale preservatives.

1 medium onion 1 large carrot 2 celery stalks 1 large zucchini 5 ripe cherry tomatoes 2 garlic cloves

1/4 cup minced parsley 1/4 cup minced basil 1 bay (laurel) leaf 2 tbsp olive oil 2 oz. salt 3 tbsp red miso 1/2 cup white wine (optional)


1. Wash all of your vegetables and cut them into rough chunks. Finely chop the fresh herbs, except the bay leaf, and peel the garlic cloves. 2. Add the olive oil and all the ingredients except the miso to a pot that can accommodate them, and cook on medium-low for 10 minutes. 3. Add the salt, give everything a good stir, cover, and let cook until the vegetables are soft, about an hour. Because of the salt, the vegetables will produce a good amount of liquid. Use some of this liquid to dissolve the miso, add it to the pot and give it a good stir. 4. Fish out the bay leaf and the garlic cloves, then purée your vegetable mixture as finely as you can. It is more practical to do it with an immersion blender, as the mixture has to cook more, but you can also transfer everything to a food processor, then return the purée to the pot. 5. Now, we need to cook the mixture until all the water is evaporated and it easily detaches from the sides of the pot and it forms into a paste, about 20 minutes. Keep a close eye on it! As it starts to come off the sides, you will need to keep stirring it to keep it from sticking. At this point, you have two options to keep your homemade bouillon:

Put the paste into ice trays and freeze them. Once fully frozen, you can transfer the cubes to a plastic bag. The salt might prevent them from hardening completely. They will keep in the freezer for up to 6 months.

You can put the stock paste into jars and keep them in the fridge, where they will last about one month. You can also divide it into small jars and freeze them, then take them out and keep them in the fridge as you need them. If you want to seal the jars for longer storage, prepare your jars beforehand: boil them for 10 minutes along with their lids (which must fit perfectly and be completely clean) to sterilize them. Let them dry completely (popping them in a 150 °F oven until dry helps) and, once fully dry, fill them with the paste, leaving about 1 inch of space, and close them. Bring a pot of water that can fit all of them to a boil again, and add the jars. Count 5 minutes from the moment when the water comes back to a full boil. Fish them out with tongs, and let them cool on the counter. As they cool, a vacuum will form and suck the lid down. To check if the jars have been successfully sealed, push the lids with a finger—they should be completely sunken down.




words by Jessica Gilgurd

Having grown up in a Russian household, it’s no wonder that my first and truest love was food. Whether it was a celebration or a time of mourning, each occasion was met with a feast of such grand proportions it couldn’t possibly be finished…yet every time it was. I remember coming home from school one day with tears streaming down my face, because at the ripe old age of seven a group of boys who had been my friends a mere week ago had now decided to form a boys club, which had a NO GIRLS ALLOWED policy. I didn’t understand what had changed from the week before other than that they wanted nothing to do with me. In my nanny’s truest fashion she fixed me up a plate of smetannik, a Russian sour cream cake that still makes me go weak in the knees, as she tried to console my young and naive self. It’s funny, because looking back on that day I realize there would be many occasions like this to follow. There are few professions as grueling and labor-intensive as working in a professional kitchen. It is time-consuming, a burden on the body, and often thankless work. Anyone who has ever braved the heat of a professional kitchen understands what I mean: the long hours, the heavy lifting, and the incessant worrying that you’ll run out of something in the middle of service and the world will literally come to an end are just a few of the things that pop into my head. Over the years I’ve worked in a number of kitchens, all unique and with their own personalities and quirks, and in every arena of the culinary world from fine dining restaurants to a Korean BBQ food truck. Something I’ve seen steadily changing is the amount of women I see surrounding me in these kitchens.

and it made me think: are women invading the boys club? I’ll always remember the day I told my dad I was dropping out of college to get a culinary degree. My timing was a bit off considering he was in the hospital about to have major heart surgery, but hey, you can’t always predict when the


right time will be. I told him my dream was to become a pastry chef, and that I was only wasting precious time and money attending overcrowded lecture halls when all I could think about was rushing home to drizzle ganache over my Belgian chocolate mousse tart I had made earlier in the day. He sat there in silence, staring at me with a bemused look on his face, but then he finally said, “Women don’t belong in the kitchen.” WHAT?! I must have misunderstood him. From birth my father, this very gender-conforming Russian man, had beat into my brain the roles of men and women, and I was certain that being an excellent cook was definitely under the category of women’s work. I could feel myself getting warm from the frustration I was feeling at how the conversation was going. He continued,

And that was that. He wouldn’t discuss the matter any further and I would be sending myself to culinary school. For the next year of my life I worked two full-time jobs while attending culinary school, just to pay the $33,000 tuition. My shower head was a nozzle with a Ziploc bag with holes punched through it. I spent my days frosting cakes at a cupcake shop in Midtown while my nights were spent running around doing freelance catering gigs. I was lucky if I got in four hours of sleep and oftentimes was so broke I would bring brown paper bags with me to school so I could bring home the fruits of my educational day’s work. One memory sticks out in particular that summarizes this year of my life. I remember it was cold and raining one night when I took the crosstown bus to the nearest grocery store. I hadn’t eaten all day and all I wanted was a can of tomato soup. When it was my turn to pay at the register my card was declined. I thought it was a mistake and that I surely had the two freaking dollars it cost to purchase the soup. Nope. Turns out I didn’t. I left the store defeated and unsure of my decision to go to culinary school. I called my mom that night sobbing and asked for her help.


After a year of intensive training I was ready to go out into the real world. And then reality hit. I would be making $10 an hour, working twelve hours a day, all while being constantly shouted at and berated, and yet I was one of the lucky ones. My first job straight out of culinary school was at a NYC fine dining restaurant working under their head pastry chef, who also happened to be a woman. My first day on the job I was carrying a tray of freshly-made tiramisu, ready and eager for my first dinner service. While walking back to my station I could feel the weight of the tray pressing down on my less-than-muscular arms. I did my best to keep it steady, but my weak arms gave way, sending my beautiful tiramisu tumbling to the ground. I stood over them, watching, waiting, as if they might just jump back onto the tray like nothing happened. I looked around as the guys in the kitchen gave me a sympathetic look, like, “Shit, nice knowing you.” My chef came marching over to me, threw a rag at my face, told me to clean the floor and myself up, and keep setting up for service. As the end of the night grew to a close, I prepared for my inevitable dismissal. Instead my chef came walking over to me holding what looked like a pair of dumbbells.

could from her, still always remaining a bit terrified. I watched closely as she created desserts that screamed of perfection. Her plates were meticulous and beautiful, like deliberately plotted brush strokes on canvas. What most impressed me though was how the rest of the kitchen regarded her. As soon as her presence was known a certain tension was felt in the air, and you could tell it was a mixture of fear and respect. I thought to myself, This is what I want. To walk into any kitchen knowing my talent overshadowed the fact that I was the only woman amongst a sea of men.

why everything looked as if it were on the brink of death.

A few years later I was searching for a job that would take me away from the city for a few months, and I found one that seemed like the perfect fit. An organic orchard in upstate NY was looking for someone to oversee the farm’s pastry production,which was to be distributed to all the local markets in the city throughout the week. Immediately images of me wearing a gingham apron, baking pie after pie, and strolling through hidden meadows at sunset danced around in my head. Fortunately my interview went great and in less than two weeks my bags were packed and I was off to live out this country girl fantasy I’d created for myself.

For such a modest estate the farm’s kitchen was equipped with state-ofthe-art equipment, from a brand new massive steel convection oven to a thirty-rack proofer, but unfortunately the reality of daily life on the farm overshadowed my new kitchen toys. This was the first time in my career

“Do you know what these are?” “Umm…weights?” “No! They’re your new best friends. Get a set of these and start working those arms of yours. It may be true that men are physically stronger than women, but there’s no excuse for you to not at least try to be as strong as you can be.”

I arrived at what seemed to be a half-decaying farm house that passed as a commercial kitchen. The green pastures I had envisioned were brown and yellow, and my culinary staff was a group of seven or eight men in their thirties and forties who spoke very little English. My fantasy was immediately crushed, but I was hired to do a job and that is what I was determined to do. I later found out a massive fire had destroyed most of the crops a few years prior to my arrival and that was

It was the simplest advice she could have given me, but it was brilliant! I spent my time learning as much as I


But a short drive up from the farm was another orchard that truly was breathtaking. Stretched across miles of terrain on lush green hills, an abundance of peaches, plums, and nectarines hung from the tree tops. Berries of all types nestled into flourishing bushes neatly arranged in row upon row. As I drove through the other orchard I was inspired to get back to work immediately and start turning the season’s bounty into delectable sweet treats.

The guys came to play this game where they would take anything from challah dough to cookie dough and transform it into penis shapes, which they would then throw at me when I had my back turned. Often there would be pictures of naked women plastered on my work station with no one to stake a claim to them. Their behavior was childish and immature and I did my best to ignore it, but as things progressed they became intolerable. What were once only verbal assaults started to become intrusions on my personal space and physical threats. When I confronted my boss about these incidents, I was told boys will be boys.


My living conditions were no better than my working conditions. What was promised to be a charming farm cottage turned out to be a house more fit for a Guillermo Del Toro movie. The doors had no locks, while the inside smelled of mold and was infested with bugs. I assumed the bugs were a result of the upstairs having all the windows knocked out. Although I was exhausted I seldom slept comfortably in my humble abode, and when I did

My fantasy had quickly turned into my worst nightmare, but for some reason I got up day after day and went to work. I’m still not sure what kept me there other than wanting to prove to myself that I could stick it out. I spent the rest of the summer dodging phallic pastries like incoming bombs, ignoring the lewd Spanish phrases with which I came to be very familiar, and dealing with the fact that my staff liked to refer to me as “frog boss”, which I can only assume was intended less than affectionately. I came to have that nickname due to the fact that although I had long been working on my upper body strength, I just couldn’t muster up the strength to toss around 100-lb bags of flour and sugar Hulk-style. I’d formed a habit of squatting down and placing the bags on my thighs, followed by what could only be described as a hop. I may have looked ridiculous, but I was determined and self-reliant. When the season finally came to a close I had created a line of baked goods that I was proud of and survived a summer of what could only be described as self-prescribed torture--but had somehow procured a staff that actually respected me, and may have even come to like me.

Of course not all kitchen jobs are as extreme as the one I had on the farm; in fact, most aren’t. Most kitchens are much more subtle in their unequal treatment of men and women. It varies from kitchen to kitchen, but from all the stories I’ve heard from the strong and powerful women I’ve had the pleasure of meeting along the way things aren’t that different. One of the most common experiences, and what I believe to be the most harmful to women, are the double standards that exist. Like I discussed earlier, working in kitchens is a high-stress job. Tempers often flare, and that’s to be expected when you’re working in a room that’s hotter than the seventh layer of hell and your ass keeps rubbing up against your fry guy because there’s no room for it elsewhere. The difference is that when my male co-workers lost their cool it was shrugged off or laughed off. When I or one of my female co-workers lost it we were scolded for having a bad attitude, or worse: having our frustration reduced to “that time of the month.” It seems like a funny cliché, but let me tell you when you’re in the middle of having a meltdown the last thing you want to hear is that your attitude is being affected by the shedding of your uterine lining. One of my all-time favorite offenses towards women in kitchens is the way we’re addressed. While it may not seem like it at the time, being referred to as “kiddo” or “sweetie” is not only degrading, but displays the patronizing attitude held toward women in the industry. Having chosen the pastry field I’ve had to suffer through these attitudes tenfold. Not only am I a woman in the kitchen but I make dainty pretty things all day long. I have heard countless times that pastry is the perfect pro-


fession for female chefs. It’s fluffy and feminine. All I can say to that is there is nothing fluffy or feminine about kneading eighty pounds of dough to elastic perfection until your arms feel like melting off your body. Nor is there anything fluffy or feminine about sweating your ass off mixing together a hundred pounds of butter cream while making sure your tart shells don’t burn in the oven and the pears caramelize on the stove top. Being a pastry chef is a job that demands respect, and each day is a struggle to obtain it. One of the most pivotal moments in my career came at a point when I was sick and tired of male antics in kitchen.

I just wanted to be left to create without constantly having my guard up. A friend of mine was working for a branding and merchandising company, and the CEO was looking for a personal chef. I showed up at her Chelsea brownstone thinking I had nothing to lose. For about twenty minutes we discussed her dietary needs, her likes and dislikes, and what she hoped to get out our partnership. After all was said and done she asked me what my salary demands were. I paused and looked at her for a moment, and she immediately recognized the hopeless look in my eyes. It was the look of me trying to determine my worth. She kindly told me to think it over and to send her assistant my business proposal. As I got ready to leave, she added, “Whatever your number is, add about 30% to it.”


I went home that night and worked on my business proposal, thinking about the last words she’d said to me. The next day I sent a proposal asking for a salary of $700 a week. I thought it was way too high a number for my level of experience, but I figured we could negotiate down and I would still end up being extremely overcompensated. Less than an hour later her assistant emailed me back letting me know that my salary of $900 a week had been approved and that I would be starting immediately. I showed up that Monday with bags upon bags of groceries from the market, buzzing with excitement and ready to show my new boss I was worth the number I had asked for -- but still confused about how we ended up at $900. I began to sauté some onions when she walked into the kitchen, dressed elegantly in black from head to toe. She seemed a bit eccentric, but a true power player. She had to be, considering she was the CEO of a Forbes 500 company. I hadn’t expected her to be home, but since she was I decided I would ask her if a mistake had been made with my salary. She told me there hadn’t been. I explained to her that I had asked for $700 a week and was instead given a salary of $900. She didn’t seem to understand my confusion. “Yes,” she replied, “and I told you to add 30% to what you thought you were worth. If I’ve learned anything by now, you didn’t do that, so I took it upon myself to do it for you. That is how we came to the number.” I was dumbfounded. She was correct in her assumption, but how did she know? She then proceeded to give me a lesson that has stuck with me. She explained to me that men and women are raised in two completely different manners. Men are raised to be assertive and take what they think they deserve, and as a result always get more. Women, on the other hand, are taught to be patient and take only what is given to them, and


as a result lag behind. She gave me the scenario that there are a man and woman going after the same job.

She told me almost every time the less qualified man will, due to the fact that he was conditioned to do so. “That is why I gave you the $900,” she explained, “because that is your true value.” She then left for work without another word. Every day I showed up to her home with my bags of groceries, and every day she taught me another lesson about how to be a strong and powerful woman in a world run by men. If I had to give advice to the other women in the industry, or to the ones thinking about going into it, it would be to grow a thick skin. It isn’t easy, but at the end of the day I am satisfied knowing that I get to do what I love. The most important lesson I’ve learned is that

Because of social conditioning and media, women have been trained to turn on each other instead of utilizing one another. The kitchen is not the place for this. Rely on one another and show the boys that we are their equals. It’s been eight years since the day I told my dad I was dropping out of college to become a chef, and his words still ring in my head every time I step into a new kitchen. They serve as a reminder that women are still knocking down barriers that have been set in place for years, and although we have come a long way, we will never stop beating them down and moving forward. That is what it means to be a woman in the boy’s club.


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