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No. 44 Jan/Feb | Fresh 2016

Cel eb ra ti n g Cen tra l Texa s fo o d cu lt u re, sea so n by sea so n

FRESH ISSUE


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TEXAS’

ORIGINAL CRAFT VODKA WINE ENTHUSIAST RATINGS SCORE OUT OF 100 POINTS

PTS

My American Handmade Vodka beats the giant “Imports” every day. That’s because it’s distilled six times, we use old-fashioned pot stills we built ourselves, and taste test every batch to make sure you get only the best. Try American! Tito’s is made from corn, so it’s naturally gluten-free.


Thou shalT noT miss iT!

This exhibition is organized by the Morgan Library & Museum, New York. Saul defeats the Ammonites, MS M.638, fol. 23v, The Crusader Bible, The Morgan Library & Museum, Purchased by J. P. Morgan, Jr., 1916

Blanton Museum of Art / The University of Texas at Austin / MLK at Congress / Austin, TX 78712 / 512.471.7324 / www.blantonmuseum.org


CONTENTS fresh issue 8 notable MENTIONS 12 notable EDIBLES Confituras, Salud! Bitters and New Braunfels Brewing Company.

20 edible ENDEAVOR

57

Turning tragedy.

22 farmers DIARY

Tecolote Farm.

36 behind THE VINES

New world / old world.

22

30

47 what we’re DRINKING

With fresh.

51 SUSTAINABLE food center Buy fresh, buy local.

FRESH features 26 On Down the Chain Try fish a few links down the food chain.

51 edible NATION Chef Colicchio—out of the kitchen and into food policy.

54 hip girl’s guide to HOMEMAKING

Eating her curds and whey.

30 The Mark of a Chef Wearing your favorite ingredient on your sleeve.

38 Food Transformer Virginia Willis lightens up your southern favorites.

61 The Directory

48 A Natural Clean

66 back PAGE

57 Back of the House

Paddling a chef.

COVER: Kristi Spark’s “more salt” tattoo by Alison Narro (page 30).

Rediscover the benefits of cleansing with oils.

Fukumoto Sushi and Yakitori Izakaya.


EDITOR’S NOTE

FRESH TAKE

T

PUBLISHER Marla Camp

ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER here’s an important tenet in the world of improvisational theater known as “Yes, and….” It’s an understood agreement

between players that the playing field/stage is a positive environment for cooperation and a safe place for building ideas and moving for-

Jenna Northcutt

EDITOR Kim Lane

ward. Doubt, judgment and hesitation are left by the wayside, while

ADVERTISING DIRECTOR

novel ideas, directions and perspectives are welcomed, encouraged

Dawn Weston

and embraced. It’s here that the creative magic can happen—where innovation blooms without the tethering of second thought, and where previously unfathomable ideas are trusted as legitimate and worthy. This is also where the concept of “new” is born, and it’s in this spirit that we introduce our inaugural theme of Fresh. We use the word “fresh” a lot around here, it’s true—there’s not a single issue of

COPY EDITOR Anne Marie Hampshire

EDITORIAL ASSISTANTS Melinda Barsales, Claire Cella, Dena Garcia, Angela Chapin Holt, Cari Marshall, Michelle Moore

Edible Austin without it. In our work, “fresh” is most often used to describe food,

ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

and rightfully so—it is our most compelling raison d’être. But with this issue, we’d

Susanna Cassady

like to expand our application of “fresh” to more than just food. We want to also focus on fresh concepts, solutions, directions—to the many questions and ideas introduced to our particular playing field that are met with a “yes” and then move forward to become reality, taking us with them. Fresh ideas from this issue include retooling classic Southern fare for a new palate (page 38), cleansing the skin with a

ADVERTISING SALES Christine Andrews, Valerie Kelly

DISTRIBUTION MANAGERS Leary Kelly

surprising (though thoroughly ancient) ingredient (page 48), marveling at the collision of Texas wine and beer cultures (page 16) and finding inspiration in tragedy (page 18). Of course, we also chose to debut Fresh now because this time of year invites change (this is the first time I’ve written the note for this page, for example). We eagerly look for, and await, new paths. And why not? The view from here is spectacular, isn’t it? It stretches for countless, forgiving miles to an end that is barely perceivable...a blurry pinprick on the horizon. The door of possibility is propped wide and the road ahead paved with yeses. In this and subsequent issues of Fresh, we’ll celebrate, and shine the spotlight on, the yes-takers and yes-makers among us—those who build with trust and leap without a net, the people and ideas that challenge us to consider food and life just a little differently. Do these things have the ability to change the world? Yes, and… …welcome to Fresh.

Kim Lane, Editor

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FRESH 2016

EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM

ADVISORY GROUP Terry Thompson-Anderson, Paula Angerstein, Dorsey Barger, Jim Hightower, Toni Tipton-Martin, Mary Sanger, Carol Ann Sayle

CONTACT US Edible Austin 1411A Newning Ave., Austin, TX 78704 512-441-3971 info@edibleaustin.com edibleaustin.com Edible Austin is published bimonthly by Edible Austin L.L.C. All rights reserved. Subscription rate is $30 annually. No part of this publication may be used without written permission of the publisher. ©2015. Every effort is made to avoid errors, misspellings and omissions. If, however, an error comes to your attention, please accept our sincere apologies and notify us.


The ParamounT TheaTre in partnership with

presents

RuTh REiChl FEBRuARy 18, 2016 PARAmouNT ThEATRE DooRS & ViP RECEPTioN: 7Pm Show: 8Pm

Bestselling author, food critic, and judge on Bravo’s Top Chef Masters, Ruth Reichl is one of the most recognizable and beloved voices in the culinary world. Best known as a writer and editor, Reichl was the Editor-in-Chief of Gourmet Magazine for ten years until its closing. The host of three Food Network specials, a ten-episode PBS show, and author of several bestselling memoirs, including the recently released My Kitchen Year: 136 Recipes that Saved My Life, Reichl brings her culinary adventures and anecdotes to the Paramount stage for an enjoyable evening you won’t want to miss. Following the show, Ruth Reichl will sign her book and Edible Austin will host a pop-up farmers market featuring local food artisans, farm products and more.

TickeTS on Sale January 5 and STarT aT $25 SPecial ViP TickeTS $100 – include prime seats in the mezzanine, pre-show bites and drinks from our event partners, plus a mix and mingle with Ruth Reichl. partners

TickeTS & inFo:

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notable MENTIONS RUB ELBOWS WITH REICHL The Paramount Theatre welcomes Ruth Reichl to bring her culinary adventures and anecdotes to the

The Experience

stage on Thursday, Feb. 18. Present-

Casual fine dining unlimited prix-fixe for only $40!

ed in partnership with Edible Austin,

1200B W. 6th St. | CafeJosie.com

intimate evening with the renowned

this event will be an unforgettable, Reichl—the former editor-in-chief of Gourmet Magazine, the winner of six

eat well.

James Beard Awards, the author of numerous cookbooks and memoirs, and a judge on Bravo’s “Top Chef Masters,” among other notable

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accomplishments. VIP tickets include mezzanine seating, preshow bites and drinks from Apis Restaurant & Apiary, Snack Bar, Delysia Chocolatier, Antonelli’s Cheese Shop, Tiny Pies and Lewis Wines— and a chance to meet Reichl. Tickets are on sale Jan. 5 and start at $25. For more information visit austintheatre.org or call 512-474-1212.

TOAST & ROAST TO CELEBRATE TEXAS WINES winkrestaurant.com

The Wine & Food Foundation of Texas presents its second annual Toast & Roast on Sunday, Feb. 28, from 2 to 5 p.m. Presented in association with Texas Monthly, Toast & Roast features a tasting of Texas Monthly’s Best Texas Wines of 2015. Set among the beautiful grounds of Stonehouse Villa—a charming 1920s limestone home in Driftwood that has been recently updated by a team of designers—the event includes a feast prepared by one of Austin’s premier chefs and music from country singer Bob Appel to accompany the sip-and-stroll tastings of celebrated Texas wines. Visit winefoodfoundation.org or call 512-327-7555 for more information.

HENS AS ZERO WASTE HEROES It’s that time of year again to dust off your roost and gather your chicks for the eighth annual Austin Funky Chicken Coop Tour. This popular event is a self-guided tour that not only encourages Austin city residents to raise chickens, but also educates them on how to incorporate chickens into urban landscapes and daily life. This year’s tour, to be held on Saturday, March 26, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., is themed “Chickens as Zero Waste Heroes,” highlighting the role chickens can play in helping Austin reach its Zero Waste goals. The tour is currently accepting applications to show off your backyard coop innovations; the deadline to apply is Jan. 24. Tickets for the tour will go on sale in early 2016. Visit austincooptour.org for more information and to fill out an application. 8

FRESH 2016

EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM


and

Fresh flavorful. It’s a Texas thing. When it comes to fresh, we stick close to home. Take our new H-E-B Fresh Local Chicken for example. It’s 100% natural chicken from local Texas farms and always delivered fresh, never frozen. We’re talking USDA Grade A Chicken that has no added hormones and no artificial ingredients or preservatives. New H-E-B Fresh Local Chicken. Look for it in our Market Department.

Lime-Grilled Chicken Breasts For this recipe and others go to heb.com/localchicken ©2015 HEB, 15-7176

heb.com


AUSTIN BACON AND BEER FESTIVAL BENEFITS CAPITAL AREA FOOD BANK Co-presented by Edible Austin and Eat Boston, the third annual Austin Bacon and Beer Festival takes place Sunday, Jan. 24, from 2:30 to 5 p.m. at Fair Market. The festival showcases a bounty of bacon-centric dishes and craft brews from more than 30 Central Texas restaurants and 12 area craft breweries while raising money for Capital Area Food Bank (CAFB). The event has raised over $20,000 for CAFB since it came to Austin in 2014. Sustainable pork purveyor Niman Ranch and Austin-based Lone Star Foodservice are sponsoring the pork. The bacon: @t Large Chefs, 416 Bar & Grille, 512 Market Kitchen, Amy’s Ice Creams, Apis Restaurant and Apiary, Banger’s Sausage House & Beer Garden, Blue Corn Harvest Bar & Grill, Blue Note Bakery, Café Josie,

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District Kitchen + Cocktails, Fork & Vine, Frank, Greenhouse Craft Food, Hoover’s Cooking, Hopfields, Jack Allen’s Kitchen, Jobell Café & Bistro, Liberty Tavern, Little Barrel and Brown, OMG! Cheesecakery, Otto’s German Bistro, Peached Tortilla, Pink Avocado, Royal

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Fig Catering, Salt & Time Butcher Shop & Salumeria, Salty Sow, Snack Bar, Stella San Jac, Swift’s Attic, The Turtle Restaurant and TRACE. The beer: 512 Brewing, Brooklyn Brewery, Dublin Bottling Works,

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Independence Brewing Co., Karbach Brewing Co., Last Stand Brewing Company, Pedernales Brewing Co., Real Ale Brewing Co., Saint Arnold Brewing Co., Save the World Brewing Co., Shiner Brewing Co., South Austin Brewery, Texas Keeper and Thirsty Planet Brewing Company. Visit edibleaustin.com for details and to buy tickets.

REGISTER NOW FOR 2016 TOFGA CONFERENCE The 2016 Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Conference is Thursday, Feb. 11 through Saturday, Feb. 13, at the Hilton Rockwall Lakefront in Rockwall, just east of Dallas. The venue, set on the shores of Lake Ray Hubbard, provides a gorgeous backdrop to the jam-packed conference, which features workshops and speakers addressing topics including Gardening and Homesteading; Texas Food Systems and Policy; Business and Marketing; Crops; and Livestock. The speaker for the opening plenary session is Scott Marlow, the executive director of The Rural Advancement Foundation International-USA. The three-day gathering also features preconference workshops, an opening banquet and a farmer happy hour hosted by the Texas Young Farmers Coalition. Visit tofga.org or call 512-656-2456.

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WHERE INSPIRATION AND DISCOVERY HAPPEN “South by Southwest broadly is about bringing people from a wide array of business and creative disciplines together to figure out the future... It’s a forwardthinking event.” –Wired.com

Next Registration Deadline: January 15 Learn More: sxsw.com/austin2016 follow us: @sxsw

T

Photo Credit: Amy Ellinger

Y


notable EDIBLES SPREADING THE LOVE

E

ven a business focused on pre-

serving can welcome change. After five years of sharing her garage, living space and car with endless jars of jam and

Start fresh PeoplesRX 3-Day seasonal Cleanse

the equipment that helped make them, Confituras founder Stephanie McClenny is ready to expand, but not in the usual way. Sure, the new commercial kitchen space will be large enough to share with other like-minded food artisans, and yes, there’ll be a retail shop (biscuits and jam!), but McClenny has also taken pains to turn the space into an incubator project to help those in her field who aren’t quite as ripe. “Whether they’re already working out of their home or they just have an idea for a food business, we’ll help small, woman-owned businesses make their product in a commercial kitchen, and sell it there, too,” says McClenny from her perch at a picnic table by the chicken coop of Johnson’s Backyard Garden, where she’s just stocked up on ingredients. McClenny says she wants to give these women what would have helped her five years ago. This includes not just a workspace with sliding-scale rent, but mentorship from the other food makers in the building. She also plans to bring in speakers

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to discuss contracts, accounting and other subjects helpful to a budding entrepreneur. When McClenny took her community kitchen idea to Kickstarter, she reached her $20,000 goal in just eight days. She soon set her sights on a stretched goal of $30,000, with plans to use the remainder for the incubator portion of the project. “Not only will this help us offset huge building costs, but it also includes the community,” she says. “They’ve invested in us more than just financially.” Confituras will open its world headquarters somewhere in South Austin by the end of 2016. McClenny plans to take on one

THERMOGRAPHY

incubator candidate the first year, “so we can make mistakes together,” before expanding the program from there. In spite of the

HIGHLY EFFECTIVE BREAST SCREENING

new growth, though, she doesn’t foresee growing the reach of her own product line or distribution. She intends to stick with five

No Radiation

to 10 flavors of jellies and jam each season, and never stray too

No Compression

ingredients are grown, or from the family of local markets where

far afield of the Hill Country, where many of her jams’ organic her goods are sold. “We’re proud of what we’ve created here,” she

No Pain

says. “It’s not important for us to be in every Target around the

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FRESH 2016

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nation.” —Steve Wilson For more information, visit confituras.net


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with its new line of drink enhancers made from the plants, roots and ever-tasty tree barks of the Lone Star state. Given the earthy nature of these ingredients, it should come as no surprise that the idea sprang from thoughts about a compost heap. “I was looking for something to do with my citrus trash other than composting it when I thought about bitters,” says Salud! co-founder Kate Payne. Tincturing citrus with roots and bark isn’t the kind of thing most people do on a lark, but for the author of “The Hip Girl’s Guide” cooking and homemaking books, it was right up her alley. Payne shared samples of the new bitters at her various preservation and fermentation workshops, where they earned rave reviews. Soon after, she teamed with designer Nora Chovanec to launch Salud! Using ingredients that are responsibly foraged, locally sourced and organic, Payne and Chovanec have created a palate of flavors celebrating Texas’ unique terrain and abundance. Salud! Bitters

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CULTURE COLLISION: ONE BARREL AT A TIME n 1850, the man behind the original

carbonation. [The result] is absolutely a

New Braunfels Brewing Company,

taste of the Texas Hill Country and down-

Julius Rennert, brewed his first beer—

town New Braunfels.”

generating a following that lasted be-

NBBCo currently offers four blends of

yond the 1919 enactment of Prohibition.

Sangre de Shiva (listed in the suggested

However, that all came to an end in 1925

order for a vertical tasting). Blend 3 was

when authorities raided the brewery.

aged in Dry Comal Creek Vineyards Black

Nearly 90 years later, the husband and

Spanish barrels and has a one-month bot-

wife team of Kelly and Lindsey Meyer,

tle-age. It’s brown-red in color and nearly

operators of a string of eight success-

opaque with an orange rim. Coffee and

ful fitness centers, contemplated their

mocha aromas linger, and tangy, leesy

future. “Back then,” Kelly says, “I was

and woody notes build on the palate.

a guy with two hobbies: exercise and

It’s only slightly effervescent with sweet

beer-making. If I could run a few miles

red-wine notes that play mid-palate. The

and then down a few brews, I was a hap-

finish is pleasantly sour. Blend 2 was aged

py guy. Having done the exercise busi-

in William Chris Vineyards Syrah barrels

ness, my wife and I decided to go full-

and has a seven-month bottle-age. It has

bore into my other hobby.”

a less-opaque brown color leading to an

The couple decided to reincarnate

orange-yellow rim. There are toasty aro-

the New Braunfels Brewing Company

mas of roasted grain and caramel, and a

(NBBCo) with a desire to make beers that

notable effervescence from bottle-aging.

would stand out. “We started by making

Roasted coffee and toffee notes are also

one beer for each of the five elements

on the palate, and the finish is bright and

of Chinese philosophy—Air, Earth, Fire,

tangy. And Blend 1 was aged in William

Water and Heaven—each with a dis-

Chris Vineyards Enchanté (red blend)

tinctly different flavor,” says Kelly. Later,

barrels and has a one-year bottle-age. It’s

they added the “Fun-damentals” series,

brown-yellow in color with nose-popping

which allowed them to play around more

effervescence and aromas. The complex

and take risks with flavor. It was during

palate includes roasted malt and toffee

this risk-taking phase that NBBCo joined the retro-yet-edgy craft

flavors, and the developing viscosity and carbonation provide an ex-

beer-making movement with its Sangre de Shiva, a project that suc-

citing mouthfeel. The finish is a real twang of acidity.

cessfully marries two unlikely partners: NBBCo’s Shiva’s Tears (a

Blend 4 will debut sometime in December 2015, and Blend 5

dark Weizenbock stout-style beer) and seasoned wine barrels pre-

(aged in Dry Comal Creek Vineyards Malbec barrels) in January

viously used to age Texas red wines. “We get barrels still wet with

2016. NBBCo beers are available at the brewery and at many Hill

lees and wine residue in them,” says Kelly. “Within hours, we fill

Country H-E-Bs, Whole Foods Markets and Spec’s. Buy to drink

them with Shiva’s Tears. We let the beer age for about a year and

now or hold up to five years. If you have the patience to wait, each

bottle it with a small dose of sweeteness and our local windborne

blend will only get better. —Russ Kane

New Braunfels wild yeast that brings on bottle fermentation and

Find out more at nbbrewing.com, or call 830-626-2739.

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FRESH 2016

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Photography of Kelly Meyer by James Skogsberg; photo of Sangre de Shiva Blend 3 label by Russ Kane, vintagetexas.com

I


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edible ENDEAVOR

TURNING TRAGEDY T

he day my dad died under

our favor—they’d be hard-pressed

questionable circumstances

to believe that a hospital could be

in a Los Angeles hospital

a dangerous place for patients. But

is the day I dedicated my career to

these were not just any patients.

community wellness and healing. It

King-Drew Hospital treated many

was June 1995. My mother had ar-

of the city’s poorest citizens and

rived a few days earlier to help plan

undocumented immigrants. It was

the celebration for my oldest son

finally shut down in the years fol-

Brandon’s graduation from Shaker

lowing our case as more and more

Heights Middle School, just out-

people seeking medical care need-

side of Cleveland. Dad stayed be-

lessly lost their lives.

hind in Los Angeles to work. While

Although my family and I could

Mom and I busied ourselves with

not ensure that what happened to

errands—the party supply store,

us would never happen to another

the

supermarket—King /Drew

family, I vowed that Dad’s death

Hospital in South Central Los

would not be in vain. But how? I

Angeles (known among rap mu-

was an award-winning journalist

sicians as “Killa King”) was try-

and author on my way to becom-

ing to reach us. My home phone

ing a cultural and culinary histo-

rang incessantly as we unloaded

rian as a founder and president of

the car in the driveway.

both Southern Foodways Alliance

“Your father has been in an ac-

(University of Mississippi) and

cident—ejected from his car. His

Foodways Texas (University of

spleen was ruptured, but he is in

Texas). “Activist” was not yet on

ICU and doing well,” the surgeon

my résumé.

said confidently. Still, I panicked.

It took some time to figure out,

This trauma center once received

but in 2008, I founded The SANDE

so many gunshot victims that physicians headed to Vietnam took

(spirit, attitude, nutrition, deeds, effort) Youth Project—named in

their training there. But in recent years, it had earned a horrible

honor of the rituals practiced by African village women who sustain

reputation as a place where patients check in and don’t check out.

community through cultural tradition, farming, food preparation,

The doctor recognized my anxiety and tried to reassure me, “I am

entrepreneurship, clothing and musical production. The nonprofit

going to take a rest, but I’ll check on him in a little while. He will

promotes the connection between cultural heritage, cooking and a

be fine until you can get here tomorrow.”

healthy community, and is modeled after the community-building

Several hours later, my body shook with total disbelief when I

concept of “third place” (the social place that’s separate from the

telephoned the ICU to see how Dad was doing. “Oh, he died,” the

other two social places of home and workplace). It was designed

nurse on duty said with banal indifference.

to be a space for transformation, and I envisioned it would be an

Many years passed before I was able to speak aloud about that

incubator kitchen like San Francisco’s La Cocina, where cultural

day, unless the storytelling involved police, reporters, lawyers

exhibits, healthy cooking classes and uplifting talks by visiting au-

or a few close friends. Eventually, my family accepted an out-of-

thors would empower self-care, decrease health care costs, create

court settlement. Jurors, we were advised, would never find in

jobs and small businesses and build up underserved communities.

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EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM

Photography of Toni Tipton-Martin by Naomi Logan Richard, White Glove Photos

BY TO N I T I PTO N - M A RT I N


While SANDE struggled to find a home in Austin’s gentrified East Side, we hosted mobile activities that used cooking as social action for change—including pop-up public exhibits and creative opportunities for culinary students to practice their craft here and in New York City at the prestigious James Beard House. For the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday, we partnered with Peace Through Pie, an organization that recognizes the power of food to bring people together and transcend social boundaries. We helped create the Children’s Picnic and Real Food Fair, a free public health event co-presented with Edible Austin in order to make fresh, local food fun for everyone. And last year, SANDE hosted a new signature event over the Juneteenth weekend—Soul Summit: A Conversation About Race, Identity, Food and Power. It was the first conference, locally or nationally, dedicated exclusively to African-American food culture. Today, my recipe for healing is reaching beyond Austin’s city limits. Inspired by the core values and work ethics of role models I discovered in 300 rare African-American cookbooks, I recently published a beautiful, coffee table-style book entitled, “The Jemima Code: Two Centuries of African American Cookbooks.” From the authors featured in my book—whose writings date as far back as 1827—I learned about the management, organizational, technical and entrepreneurial skills of invisible kitchen workers. I observed educators and activists who improved the welfare of the people at their table, and who sustained the community and environment by recycling and repurposing, eating seasonally and locally, and canning and consuming plant-based diets. This

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book is just one of several already in the works as companions to SANDE’s community-building efforts. I hope they tear down stereotypes and misinformation and give cooking a new swagger that entices people to come back into the kitchen to cook their way out of poverty or poor health. A collection of 500 recipes from “The Jemima Code,” adapted for modern kitchens, is due out next year under the working title of “Jubilee!” Will any of this help make cooking sexy? Will it develop more food scholars? Will it break down barriers, reduce race prejudice or tackle issues of inequity and access? If a new and improved King/Drew could be re-opened last summer (as Martin Luther King, Jr. Care Center), I sure hope so. Cookbook authors, food journalists, executive chefs, restaurant owners, kitchen designers and architects, food historians and archeologists, mixologists, urban farmers and vegans are still overwhelmingly white, while people of color suffer disproportionately from unemployment and diseases with diet as a risk factor. However, I believe that with the culinary wisdom expressed by the farmers and chefs at the Children’s Picnic, by the writers featured in “The Jemima Code” and by the speakers from Soul Summit, communities can be built where people are treated with dignity and where the healthcare system works for everyone. Call me Pollyanna, but my promise to Dad depends on it. The following simple recipes are reprinted with permission. They first appeared on thejemimacode.com and are featured in the upcoming cookbook, to be published by Rizzoli, USA.

Climb trees. Buy trees. Learn trees. w i l d f l o w e r . o r g/ t t w w

January 23

EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM

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MARY’S SORGHUM GINGERBREAD The “Farmer Jones Cook Book,” printed in 1913, included recipes for using sorghum syrup in bakery goodies, candies, ice creams, a few meats and vegetables, and a household remedy or two, to “reduce the high cost of living.” A statement inside the 26page collection tells us the only thing we know about the cook selected by Farmer Jones to endorse the company’s brand of kitchen wisdom: “The picture on the front cover is reproduced from life. ‘Mary’ is employed in the family of the Manager of the Fort Scott Sorghum Syrup Co., at Fort Scott, Kansas.” Makes 12 servings 2 c. all-purpose flour 2 t. baking powder ½ t. baking soda ½ t. salt 1½ t. ground ginger 1 t. ground cinnamon ½ c. butter, softened ¼ c. brown sugar, packed 1 egg 1 c. sorghum syrup 1 c. low-fat buttermilk Sweetened whipped cream Heat the oven to 350°. In a bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger and cinnamon, and set aside.

Farm

Cream together the butter and brown sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer on medium speed—beating until light and fluffy. Add the egg and beat until thoroughly mixed. With the mixer running, pour in the sorghum and mix well—scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally. Add the dry ingredients, alternating with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Do not overmix. Pour into a nonstick 8-by-5-inch loaf pan, sprayed with nonstick vegetable spray. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let the loaf rest in the pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto a wire rack to cool completely before slicing. Serve with sweetened whipped cream.

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VERA BECK’S CORNBREAD WITH CHEESE AND CHILES Vera Beck resembled one of those African-American matriarchs who, once upon a time, were thought of as saints—a woman in her twilight years whose culinary expressiveness was like a gift she bestowed upon the people she loved. In the few short years we had together at the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Vera taught me a few life lessons while showing me the way to light and flaky buttermilk biscuits. Makes 8 servings 2 c. yellow cornmeal 1 T. sugar 1 t. baking powder ½ t. baking soda ½ t. salt ½ c. shortening ¾–1 c. buttermilk 1 egg, beaten 1 15-oz. can cream-style corn 1 4-oz. can diced green chiles ¼ c. chopped green onion 1 c. shredded cheddar cheese

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Heat the oven to 375°. In a large mixing bowl, combine the cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix well with a wire whisk. Melt the shortening in an 8-inch cast-iron skillet. Pour the shortening, buttermilk and beaten egg into the dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon until just moist. Stir in the corn, chiles and green onion and pour half the batter into the hot skillet. Sprinkle with cheese. Top with the remaining batter and bake for 40 minutes, or until done.

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SPLIT PEA SOUP Makes 6 servings 2 c. green split peas 1 ham bone 1 c. chopped onions 1 large carrot, diced 1 large stalk celery, diced 1 large clove garlic, minced Salt and pepper, to taste

Place peas in a large saucepan and add enough water to cover. Soak overnight and drain (or, to reduce cooking time, bring the peas and water to a boil, boil 2 to 3 minutes, then turn off the heat and cover. Let stand 1 hour, then drain). Add 2 quarts of water, the ham bone, onion, carrot, celery and garlic to the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for about 1½ hours, or until the peas are tender. Remove the bone from the soup, cut off the meat, dice and return to the soup. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

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farmers DIARY

TECOLOTE FARM STAYING WITH THE PROGRAM BY A N N E M A R I E H A M PS H I R E • P H OTO G RA P H Y BY A N DY SA M S

O

The CSA program is the admit-

n Sundays, David Pitre reads

The

New

York

ted bread-and-butter for the duo,

Times—from front to

and they put their hearts and souls

back—and it takes him nearly all

into it. And though there are a few

day. It’s how he relaxes on his

different types of CSA models cur-

one day off in the “off-season” at

rently in practice in and around

Tecolote Farm, Pitre’s benevolent

Austin, they’ve held steadfast to

“boss.” On this pleasantly warm

the original—which also happens

October day, though, Pitre takes

to be one of the more challenging

a break from his reading ritual

to execute. The couple grows 100

to sit out on the back porch with

percent of the produce that goes

his partner in both marriage and

into each of their CSA program

business, Katie Kraemer. Their

baskets, and all of that bounty has

1920s farmhouse is nestled in the

been harvested within 24 hours of

middle of 65 acres of rich Blackland

delivery. Not every CSA program

Prairie soil 13 miles east of Austin

offers these two aspects, but Pitre

in Webberville, and the view from

and Kraemer consider them to be

the porch is lush, serene and de-

absolutely integral and paramount

cidedly bucolic.

to their mission. “The center of it

This “easy like Sunday morn-

all is growing stuff, picking it early

ing” vibe is not the norm, howev-

in the morning at its very best and

er, for the lion’s share of the year.

delivering it the next day,” says Pitre. “Once you start cutting cor-

From mid-March through early August, Pitre and Kraemer operate as a blur—coordinating and

ners here, then you start cutting corners there, and eventually,

operating a CSA program (the longest-running in Texas), deliver-

you’re off in a different direction.” “If you make an absolute stan-

ing baskets to more than 300 CSA subscribers, selling at farmers

dard,” Kraemer adds, “it keeps you on track. If we compromise

markets and supplying restaurants and delivery services such as

our standards, we don’t know what we’re doing anymore.” The

Farmhouse Delivery. In the months in between, there’s still plenty

other facet of their CSA model that will never be compromised

of harvesting and selling to do, as well as all of the things needed

is the concentrated focus on the relationship between the farmer

to prepare for the busy season (planting cover crops, redesign-

and the people who eat what they grow. “We still think of our-

ing irrigation, making repairs, etc.). But the pace is not quite as

selves as selling to people we know,” says Pitre. “It’s an agree-

breakneck until about January, and that’s by design. “We don’t do

ment, a verbal contract, an…I know this person. To me that’s the

the CSA in the fall typically, so that we don’t burn out and we can

heart of what we’re doing.”

keep going,” says Kraemer.

Each week, Tecolote’s CSA baskets contain around eight to EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM

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12 different seasonal vegetables, and sometimes fruit, such as strawberries, blackberries, melons and watermelon, all of which thrive in the sandy soils of another parcel of Tecolote land on the Colorado River. To attain this dedication to variety, Pitre and Kraemer grow a staggering 150 different types of fruits and vegetables each year. Pitre pulls out his old-school composition books that methodically detail his efforts to diversify and experiment with different varieties. (“Every year I vow to make a spreadsheet,” he says with a laugh.) Looking at the books, it’s easy to see that this endeavor is fueled by both science and art: The scribbled notes speak of the growth trends, the challenges and even the beauty witnessed afield. Pitre admits that maybe a fifth of all the varieties detailed in his logs aren’t going to make it, and another sixth are going to be “a total disaster.” But there’s enough overlap, and over time and experience, he’s realized that it’s good when some things don’t make it. “It’s about putting your eggs in a lot of different baskets,” he says. These values and business practices have roots in Pitre and Kraemer’s long relationship and their experience farming together. The couple bought their land in 1993 and named it “Tecolote”—a Spanish word for “owl”—in honor of the two great-horned owls that lived on the property. In 1994, Tecolote received its organic certification, and that’s when Pitre and Kraemer started the CSA program, which surprisingly, wasn’t their original intent. Pitre has always loved to cook, and when he lived and farmed in California, he sold what he grew to restaurants. He planned to do the same here, but the farm-to-plate restaurant movement hadn’t yet blossomed in Texas. Instead, the couple found the CSA model to

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be a better way to sell more of the good stuff they were producing. “Even though he hates the word ‘foodie,’ David is a foodie!” Kraemer says. “He loves to cook; he loves to eat.” Turning to her husband, she playfully adds, “So…let’s not say you’re a foodie; let’s just say you’re food-motivated. And not only that, you’re taste-motivated. You want your day to be full of things that taste good, and you’ll go to the trouble to do it.” For Tecolote’s CSA subscribers, a food- and taste-motivated farmer is the best kind to know and the best kind to grow the food they eat every day.

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For more about Tecolote Farm and to sign up for its 2016 CSA program, visit tecolotefarm.net or call 512-276-7008.

WHAT IS A CSA PROGRAM?

LOCAL INGREDIENTS, TREASURED MEALS!

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Founded in the U.S. in 1986, a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program is a partnership, most often sealed with a contract, between consumers and local farmers. In exchange for pledging financial support to the farm, CSA subscribers receive a share of the farm’s harvest, usually in the form of a basket or box of produce, which is either delivered to their homes or available for pickup at neighborhood hubs. Members benefit from the freshness and variety of the goods they receive and farmers benefit from the financial support—especially at the beginning of a season, when costs are high and income is low.


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edible ECOLOGY

ON DOWN THE CHAIN BY E L I F S E LV I L I

E

ven the least-accomplished cook among us knows how

ing the contaminants. Unfortunately, cooking has no effect

to open a can of tuna or grill a piece of salmon and

on mercury content, which can build up in our bodies and

make a decent, tasty meal. And it’s probably no sur-

lead to problems with the nervous system. The other bad

prise that salmon and tuna are the two most popular types

news is the impact on sustainability. Fish with longer life

of fish in the U.S. What may come as a surprise, though, is

spans are often the most overfished species because of the

that these seemingly healthy and easy meal choices may also

high demand from consumers. Research shows that if these

carry a hefty ecological price tag.

fishing practices and preferences continue, the large “big-

Larger, longer-living predatory fish that are higher on

fish” population could become nearly extinct within our

the seafood chain have more time to accumulate toxins and

lifetimes. With all this alarming information, choosing the

heavy metals over their life spans. This problem is com-

right fish—that’s both healthy for us and for the environ-

pounded as they feed on smaller “forage fish”—concentrat-

ment—can be challenging.


But here’s the good news: The healthier choices for us also happen to be the healthier choices for the environment. Simply put, if you choose a fish that’s likely to be low in mercury, you’re probably choosing a species that’s sustainable. Your fish is probably smaller, too, and more than a few links down on the food chain. These humble, often-ignored fish, such as smelt, sardines, perch and rainbow trout, to name a few, are, in fact, nutritional powerhouses and high in omega-3s and vitamin D. They’re also low in environmental contaminants and are easily purchased in Austin. Currently, only a small percentage of these smaller fish go directly to consumers; the majority is processed into fishmeal to feed larger farmed fish as well as pigs and chickens. If we consider that it takes about 5 pounds of smaller fish to grow 1 pound of farmed salmon, it makes sense for us to cut out the “middleman” and enjoy these nutrient-rich smaller species ourselves. This choice results in a more efficient and environmentally friendly way of using limited resources. Moreover, smaller species travel in large, dense schools, making them easier to catch with less fuel, less bycatch (fish inadvertently caught in nets and discarded) and less habitat damage. Armed with this glowing ecological and nutritional report card, let’s dive into the less-explored waters of the small catch and discover some easy and creative ways to prepare them.

SARDINES IN GRAPE LEAVES Serves 6 This recipe can be used for any fish that’s small enough to be served whole. The grape leaves are not meant to be eaten, but rather, serve to keep in moisture and impart a fragrant, savory flavor. 12 sardines, fresh or frozen, gutted and cleaned ¼ c. olive oil Juice of 1 lemon Salt and pepper, to taste 12–14 jarred grape leaves (available at Phoenicia Bakery) 1 lemon, cut into half slices Wash and gently pat the cleaned sardines with paper towels to remove excess water. Mix together the olive oil and lemon juice. Using roughly half of this mixture, brush the sardines, then lightly season them with salt and pepper. Place the sardines in the refrigerator while preparing the rest of the recipe. Gently remove the grape leaves from the jar and tease apart—taking care not to tear them. Trim the excess stems, rinse and place the leaves in a colander to drain. Heat the broiler or oven to 400°. Place a grape leaf on a work surface with the shiny side down and the vein-y side up, and brush the inside with the remaining olive oil and lemon mixture. Place a sardine on the leaf with the base of the tail aligned with the stem-side edge of the leaf. Roll each sardine in a leaf—wrapping it completely with the tail and part of the head sticking out—and place them, seam-side down, on a broiler-proof dish. If any of the olive oil mixture is left, drizzle over the wrapped sardines. Place the lemon slices between the sardine bundles. Place the dish under the broiler or in the oven and cook for 8 to 12 minutes until the sardines are fragrant and feel soft to the touch and the leaves have turned a lighter, yellowish color. Serve warm with a green salad.

POACHED PERCH IN PARCHMENT Serves 6 This flexible recipe is good for any type of fish and a variety of green herbs. Cooking in parchment makes cleanup a breeze. 1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced ½ c. chopped flat-leaf parsley 2 T. chopped fresh dill 1 T. chopped fresh mint 3 t. mild paprika 2 t. mild or medium hot red pepper flakes 4 T. butter 3 lb. perch fillets, roughly 8 oz. per serving (pick larger fillets if available; if not, use two smaller pieces per bundle) 2 medium tomatoes, sliced 2 mild peppers such as Anaheim, seeded and cut into 4 strips lengthwise 6 bay leaves 1 lemon, sliced into 6 slices 1 /³ c. olive oil ¼ c. white wine or anise-flavored liqueur, such as Pernod, ouzo or rakı (optional) Salt and pepper, to taste Heat the oven to 400°. Cut 6 pieces of parchment paper large enough to hold the fish fillets and to be folded securely to keep moisture in. In a bowl, mix the onions, fresh herbs and spices (except for the bay leaves). Melt the butter and brush the inside of each piece of parchment paper before adding the fish. Distribute the onion, herb and spice mixture between the fish packages and place the tomatoes, peppers, bay leaves and lemon slices on top of the fillets. Mix the lemon juice, olive oil and wine or liqueur and pour over the fillets, distributing evenly between the packages. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Close the packages by first bringing together the edges along the long side of the fillet and folding over each other to create a tight seal. Follow by folding in the loose edges downward 2 to 3 times so that the seal faces down. Moisten the tops of the packages with a little water to seal better. Place the packages on an ovenproof dish or tray and bake for about 20 to 25 minutes. Place the individual packages on plates, open slightly to allow the steam to escape and serve immediately.

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RAINBOW TROUT WITH GREEN MOLE Serves 6 This is a slight variation from a traditional mole recipe where a firm, larger fish is broken into chunks and dropped into the mole. Because we’re using trout, which is more delicate, we’ve chosen to serve it on top of the mole. For the mole: ¼ c. olive oil 1 medium yellow onion, sliced 4 garlic cloves, whole 2 serrano peppers, stemmed 1 c. raw pumpkin seeds 4 c. fish or shrimp stock, divided (see how to make fish stock at edibleaustin.com) 1 medium head romaine lettuce or 3 c. spinach (baby or large leaves) 4 tomatillos, peeled and quartered ½ c. cilantro, stemmed 5–10 epazote leaves (optional) 2 t. salt, plus more, to taste For the fish: 6 rainbow trout fillets, patted dry ¼ c. all-purpose flour (or rice flour if avoiding gluten) 1 t. salt ¼ c. butter

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To make the mole, heat the oil in a heavy pot and sauté the onion until translucent. Add the garlic cloves and continue sautéing. Prepare the serranos by cutting them into four pieces lengthwise. If a milder taste is desired, scrape out the seeds. Add the serranos and pumpkin seeds and sauté until the pumpkin seeds are toasty and slightly browned. Transfer the mixture into a large blender or food processor along with 2 cups of the fish stock and puree until thoroughly smooth. Return to the pot and bring to a gentle boil. Turn down the heat, cover the pot and allow to gently simmer. Chop the romaine leaves into large chunks (if using spinach, no chopping is necessary) and place in the blender or food processor along with the tomatillos, cilantro and epazote, if using. Blend while gradually adding the remaining 2 cups of stock until a thick, smooth consistency is achieved. Pour this mixture into the pot, add 2 teaspoons of salt and simmer until thickened—roughly 20 to 30 minutes. Taste and add more salt if needed. To make the fish, heat the butter in a heavy frying pan until almost brown but not burned. Mix the flour and salt and dust the fillets lightly. Fry each side 2 to 3 minutes—taking care not to overcook. Spread about ½ cup of mole onto each plate and top with a fillet. Serve immediately.

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edible INK

THE MARK OF A CHEF BY ST EV E W I LSO N • P H OTO G RA P H Y BY A L I SO N N A R RO

P

lease don’t call them badasses. Chefs in the Austin

a little special sauce in the skin is an artful way to express

food scene may have a thing for show-stopping, indus-

their serious dedication, deep respect and love for the world

try-related tattoos, but they’re not getting under the

of cuisine, as well as a unique way to honor their individual

iron simply for some extra swagger behind the line. For many,

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paths and personal philosophies about their chosen field.


CHELSEA FADDA, COOK, DAI DUE

C

helsea Fadda works for Dai Due, a butcher shop, so naturally she’s covered in tattoos of fresh vegetables.

“I got them when I was a vegetarian,” she says. “Obviously, I’m not a vegetarian anymore.” It started with a bunch of celery stalks, carrots and onions swathed in a banner reading “Mirepoix” on her right bicep. She sketched the tableau herself before handing it over to her tattoo artist, “which is why it looks like a child drew it,” she says. For her later tattoos—a fennel bulb on her calf and a kale leaf on her thigh—she used a lavishly illustrated Alice Waters cookbook for reference. Fadda says she’s been ribbed a few times about the “nerdiness” of wearing vegetables on her body, but she finds inspiration in their beauty and, in the case of fennel, their deeper meaning. “Fennel is the base for everything.” EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM

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CASEY WILCOX, EXECUTIVE CHEF JUSTINE’S BRASSERIE

W

hen Casey Wilcox tattooed “CAN’T FAIL” across his fingers, he expected some people might find it

a little cocky. But he never anticipated being chased out of the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul by a zealous spice merchant. “Only God cannot fail!” screamed the merchant. “You’re not better than God!” It wasn’t exactly the best time for Wilcox to explain that he sees the words as more of a humble prayer inspired by long-ago sailors who tattooed “HOLD FAST” on fingers trained to cling tightly to the rigging during storms. “It’s a reminder to appreciate what my hands can do and how valuable they are in my life,” says Wilcox. He’s driven home the point by adding a knife on his index finger, a fork on his middle finger and a spoon on his ring finger, but he’s not overly fussy about his body art— this is a man, after all, with a chicken foot of his own design inked into his elbow. “Once you’re tattooed up enough you can get a little whimsical with it.” 32

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KRISTI SPARKS, COOK, JUNIPER

I

f you’re a former pastry chef, the design for your cupcake tattoo better not be half-baked—make it too cute or pre-

cious and people might think you’re just somebody with a sweet tooth. Kristi Sparks left strangers with no room for doubt when she chose electric orange and lime green for her cupcake and set it in front of crossbones made with a whisk and spatula. Her left hand bears a teacup with lemon and sugar cubes to honor her English heritage, while her right depicts a mouse in an apron holding one of her favorite ingredients: a strawberry. And just to make sure it’s very clear where she stands regarding the great white god, “MORE SALT” yells from her knuckles in a typewriter font that mimics old-school recipe cards. So where does the Tokyo turnip on her calf fit into all this? “They’re #&%@-ing delicious,” she says.

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ZACK NORTHCUTT, EXECUTIVE CHEF SWIFT’S ATTIC

I

f gluttony truly is a sin, then the pig on Zack Northcutt’s calf has died for it. The swine hangs crucified on a cross over the

words “Praise the Lard,” but Northcutt says it’s not a religious thing—just something he dreamed up to give props (chops?) to a beast he loves to cook. “It’s a magical animal; you can get so many tasty things from it,” he says. Before he put the image on his body, he tagged it—along with his take on the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse: powdered gravy and pre-diced vegetables—using spray paint on the dumpsters of his favorite restaurants around town (a foodie Zorro, if you will). While Northcutt says he’s well aware that he’s “probably pissed off at least five religions with one tattoo,” it was a different kind of belief system that clashed with his own when he went to get inked. The tattoo artist waited until the needles were loaded and poised over Northcutt’s leg to say, “Just so you know…I’m a vegetarian.” “Oh man!” cried Northcutt. “Don’t take it out on me!”

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ELYSE HOANG, COOK, BARLEY SWINE

E

lyse Hoang says that strangers must assume she’s a serial killer, and that her parents have no idea what she was thinking,

but she’s gotten fairly used to the behemoth chef’s knife taking up two-thirds of her forearm. “When I first got it, I stared at it all the time,” she says. “It was motivation for me to do even better, because I’d made a lifetime commitment. Now, I never notice it anymore.” The tattoo isn’t of just any old knife, though; it’s a blade near and dear to Hoang’s heart: the $200 Japanese Shun Santoku she bought while still in culinary school. Sure, other chefs have knife tattoos, but Hoang says, with a laugh, that she has something that sets her apart from the culinary crowd: “You’re unique in the food industry if you only have one [food-related] tattoo.”

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behind THE VINES

NEW WORLD / OLD WORLD

T

he congregation assembled

tually came from Mediterranean coun-

at Mark’s American Cuisine,

tries—it was hard to tell the difference.

a softly lit restaurant housed

Crisp lemon citrus and herbal aromas

in an old, renovated Montrose-area

drove both Vermentinos, while the

church in Houston. We were ushered

sangiovese rosés titillated the palate

to the “Cloisters,” where 40 places

with tart red cherry and stony miner-

were set for dinner, but something

al notes. While similarities prevailed,

was amiss. The menus, which nor-

most agreed that the generally “riper”

mally identify the winery and wine

wines were likely from the Duchman’s

for each course, provided only the

vines because of the more intense sun

generic grape names of Vermentino,

exposure and temperatures in Texas.

sangiovese and aglianico.

However, this could also be a result of stylistic decisions made by the winery.

As we took our seats, Marcus Gausepohl, the restaurant’s wine director, announced, “I hope you’re

The most difficult challenge came with the third course, which

ready for an interesting evening of wine. It’s going to be part wine

paired Duchman’s Texas aglianico with the one from Italy. This an-

dinner and part ‘Pepsi Challenge.’” Then, with a boyish smile, win-

cient grape, originating from southern Italy (near the instep of the

ery owner Stan Duchman greeted us and started pouring wines

Italian “boot”), has been cultivated there for more than 2,500 years.

from unmarked carafes.

Because this grape has only been growing in Texas for a little more

With each of the first three courses, we were poured two wines

than a decade, conventional wisdom would predict that the differ-

side-by-side and “blinded”—meaning the attendees (myself includ-

ences would be striking. But surprisingly, both wines came through

ed) didn’t know which of the two wines was from Duchman Family

with classic deep ruby color and black fruit and earthy aromas held

Winery in Driftwood, Texas, and which was from Italy.

together with a firm tannic grip. They were more immediate-family

The path to this evening actually began back in 2004, when Drs.

members than distant cousins.

Lisa and Stan Duchman founded their Hill Country winery. Their

I later asked both Duchman and Gausepohl how the competi-

love of unique Italian grape varietals and their knowledge of

tive wine event came about. “Interestingly,” Duchman said, “I was

Mediterranean growing conditions in Texas and Italy started a quest

visiting with Certified Master Sommelier Craig Collins at Italic in

to bring world-class winemaking to the Texas Hill Country.

Austin. He commented to me about the challenge of persuading cus-

Long-time Texas winemaker Mark Penna teamed up with Stan

tomers to give Texas wines a real chance. This got me thinking.”

Duchman and then-apprentice/now-winemaker Dave Reilly. Together,

Gausepohl added, “After Stan and I discussed it, we thought it would

they experimented with making wines from favored Italian varietals

be fun to do this event as a blind-tasting dinner. I believed that the

instead of the better known cabernet, merlot, chardonnay and pinot

Duchmans had the right varieties for Texas, but we would let every-

noir that originate from cooler climes in central and northern France.

one determine if they were doing it right and could be competitive

The trio linked up with Texas winegrowing consultant Bobby Cox, the Bingham and Oswald families from the Texas High Plains and the Roberts family of Salt Lick fame. Together, they planted the grapes that allowed this wine event to become a reality. According to Reilly, “As a result of these relationships, Vermentino, Montepulciano, aglianico and sangiovese became our go-to varieties that we think compare favorably with their Old World counterparts.” Back at dinner, shortly after the first two courses were served, attendees reached a consensus that—based on the varietal characteristics of the Duchman’s “Tex-Med” wines and the wines that ac36

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on the world stage.” Seems that they are, in fact, doing it right. THE CONTENDERS: Duchman Vermentino, Bingham Family Vineyards, 2014, Texas High Plains vs. Pala “I Fiori” Vermentino, 2012, Sardinia Duchman Rosé of Sangiovese, Salt Lick Vineyard, 2014, Texas Hill Country vs. Bibi Graetz Casamatta Rosato, 2013, Tuscano, Italy Duchman Aglianico, Oswald Vineyard, 2011, Texas High Plains vs. Terredora di Paolo, 2012, Campania, Italy

Left to right: Mark Penna, Stan Duchman and Dave Reilly in the barrel room at Duchman Family Winery before Penna’s passing in 2011, courtesy Duchman Family Winery

BY RUSS K A N E


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cooking FRESH

FOOD TRANSFORMER BY M M PAC K • P H OTO G RA P H Y BY A N G I E M OS I E R

what some call “New Southern Cuisine” but which, in many ways, is a return to traditional roots. “Southern food is so much more than we’ve been told lately,” says Virginia Willis, one of the country’s foremost proponents of classic Southern cooking. An Atlanta-based, French-trained chef, teacher, recipe developer and author, her latest cookbook, “Lighten Up, Y’all,” is both an homage to what she calls “the foods of my people” and a dedication to making these dishes more healthful, i.e., lighter, with less fat and more fiber, and more nutritionally dense. This isn’t such a stretch in the realms of vegetables, legumes and grains, but what about in dishes such as macaroni and cheese? Chicken with gravy? Pimiento cheese? Famous Southern desserts like buttermilk pie? “Lighten Up, Y’all” has these challenging areas covered, too. According to Willis, it’s a matter of adjusting ingredients and techniques while maintaining flavor, mouthfeel and satisfaction. “Food has to taste good,” she says. “If you take fat out of a dish, you have to put the flavor in somewhere.” It’s also a question of balance and moderation—of distinguishing between special occasions and everyday eating. “Not every meal has to be four ounces of lean protein. There’s a place for indulgences, as long as it isn’t too often.” Willis’ path to healthier Southern cooking has been a fascinating one. She first learned at the elbows of her mother and grandmother, both talented traditional cooks. Following college, she apprenticed with Nathalie Dupree, the prolific Southern cookbook author/teacher and PBS television personality. After earning a culinary degree, Willis spent three years in Burgundy, France, at La Varenne cook-

I

n the recent past, Southern cooking has received something of a

ing school, working with British author/teacher and founder of the

bad rap. For several reasons (particularly the influence of some

school, Anne Willan. “Interestingly, my time in France made me tru-

food TV shows and personalities), it’s a common perception

ly appreciate what we have at home in the South,” says Willis. Upon

that the iconic foods of the South are loaded with fat, salt, sugar and

returning to the U.S., she worked as kitchen director for both Martha

carbs, and are usually deep-fried. While these stereotypical elements

Stewart and Bobby Flay and produced numerous TV food programs.

certainly exist (especially since the mid-20th century), it’s important

She regularly teaches classes around the country—including at the

to realize that, historically, Southern cuisine didn’t fit this unhealthy

Central Market Cooking School. “Austin is definitely a special place;

profile. Southern cooking—evolved within the region’s lush agricul-

I love the diversity and the culture. It’s got a small-town feel, but is

tural context—is a rich and complex amalgam of English, French,

an international, world-class city.”

African and Native-American influences and food traditions. It has

A few years ago, Willis decided to shed some pounds. “I need-

been, and can be, subtle and delicate, as well as fresh-produce-centric.

ed to change some things in my life; I wanted to be healthy and

Fortunately, in the last few years, this back-to-the-future approach

strong, but I still wanted to eat the friendly food I grew up lov-

is on the rise, and cooks and chefs in the South and elsewhere are

ing.” During this process, she conceived “Lighten Up, Y’all.” In

doing amazing things with heritage ingredients and flavors to create

addition to recipes, Willis has ideas for gently lightening up your

38

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EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM


WINES WITH A TRUE SENSE OF PLACE. 100% TEXAS.

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39


own cooking. “If a recipe calls for two tablespoons of butter, re-

The following recipes are

place one with a heart-healthy oil. You’ll still have butter flavor,

reprinted with permis-

but a healthier dish.” She recommends using oil spray rather than

sion from “Lighten Up,

pouring from a bottle. “It’s amazing what you can cook in very

Y’all” by Virginia Willis

small amounts of oil,” she says. “When recipes call for mayon-

© 2015. Published by Ten

naise or sour cream, replace half with yogurt. My pimiento cheese

Speed Press, a division of

is twenty-six calories per tablespoon as opposed to a standard

Penguin Random House,

eighty calories per tablespoon. And, face it, who eats just a table-

Inc. Photography © 2015

spoon of pimiento cheese?”

by Angie Mosier. For more

Lest anyone think that “Lighten Up, Y’all” is simply another

information, please visit

book on weight loss, think again. It’s the product of a creative chef/

virginiawillis.com.

teacher’s lifetime mastery of a cuisine; she tweaks the glorious cooking of the American South to fit modern sensibilities without sacrificing taste, tradition or pleasure. And she succeeds, y’all.

VEGETABLE CORN BREAD Serves 8 The suggested vegetables here are just that, a gentle suggestion. Mix it up depending on what’s in season and fresh at the market. Make it taste good! This recipe will support about five cups of chopped vegetables. Any more and the batter doesn’t hold together very well, and any less and it’s not really vegetable corn bread. I like to use a variety of chilies and leave the seeds in the rings to give the corn bread some kick, but you could remove them or try chopped zucchini, yellow squash or eggplant. If you use these more watery vegetables, you should par-cook them first to remove some of the moisture (this could be as simple as zapping in the microwave and draining off the excess water). Make sure to seek out whole-grain, not self-rising, cornmeal for the best corn flavor. It is also known as “non-degerminated.” How’s that for a word? 2 T. canola oil 2 c. yellow whole-grain cornmeal 1 t. fine sea salt 1 t. baking soda 6 fresh okra pods, stem ends trimmed, very thinly sliced (about 1 c.) 1 red onion, chopped Cut and scraped kernels from 2 ears of fresh corn (about 1 c.) 1 banana pepper, thinly sliced into rings 1 jalapeño chili, thinly sliced into rings 1 small red chili, such as bird’s eye or Thai, thinly sliced into rings ½ poblano chili, cored, seeded and chopped 2 c. low-fat buttermilk 1 large egg, lightly beaten Heat the oven to 450°. Place the oil in a large cast-iron skillet or ovenproof baking dish and heat in the oven until the oil is piping hot, about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, in a bowl, combine the cornmeal, salt and baking soda. Add the okra, onion, corn, banana pepper and chilies and toss to coat. Set aside. In a large measuring cup, combine the buttermilk and egg. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir to combine. Remove the heated skillet from the oven and pour the hot oil into the batter. Stir to combine, and then pour the batter back into the hot skillet. Bake until golden brown, about 35 minutes. Remove to a rack to cool slightly. Using a serrated knife, slice into 8 wedges and serve warm. Calories 208 • Fat 6 g • Carbs 33 g • Fiber 6 g • Protein 6 g 40

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9/23/15 5:36 PM


BRAISED COLLARDS IN TOMATO-ONION GRAVY Serves 6 Traditional Southern collards are cooked with fatback, ham hock, or bacon grease. There’s a lot of flavor in that fat, so when you eliminate it, you need to bump up the flavor elsewhere. Charring the tomatoes before adding them to the gravy is a great way to add a smoky, umami-rich note without adding fat or calories. 4 ripe, medium Roma tomatoes, cored 2 t. canola oil 1 sweet onion, chopped 3 garlic cloves Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 16 cups chopped collard greens (1 lb.) Heat a medium skillet over high heat. Add the cored tomatoes and cook until they are charred on all sides, about 5 minutes. Remove to the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Let the skillet cool slightly by taking it off the heat or decreasing the heat, depending on how smoking-hot your skillet is. Have the heat at low and add the oil (the skillet will still hold a great deal of heat). Add the onion and garlic, and sauté, stirring occasionally, until both are a deep golden-brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and let them cool slightly. Transfer to the food processor bowl containing the reserved charred tomato, and process until smooth. Transfer the mixture to a large saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat until thickened, 5 to 7 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the chopped collards and cook until just tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Taste and adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper. Serve warm. Calories 72 • Fat 2 g • Carbs 11 g • Fiber 5 g • Protein 4 g

LIGHTENED-UP PIMIENTO CHEESE Makes about 2 cups to serve 16 My mother would sometimes make homemade pimiento cheese salad with the bright orange cheddar coated in red wax, which my grandfather called “rat cheese,” because it was often used to bait mousetraps. Only in the South would grated cheese and mayonnaise be considered a salad! As a small child, I considered pimiento cheese a decidedly grown-up flavor and didn’t care for it in the least; it must have been those piquant jarred pimientos found at most Southern grocery stores. At some point, around middle school, it all changed. I’m not certain if it was a change in my palate or if I wanted to emulate my mother, but I grew to love pimiento cheese. It is traditionally served cradled in the curve of a celery stick. You can also employ bite-size cucumber cups, cored cherry tomatoes or even slices of radish. 4 oz. extra-sharp cheddar cheese, freshly grated (about 1 cup) 4 oz. light cheddar cheese, freshly grated (about 1 cup) ¼ sweet onion, grated 1 T. light mayonnaise 1 T. plain 2 percent Greek yogurt 2 T. chopped pimientos, drained Hot sauce Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper Japanese or English cucumbers, for accompaniment To make the pimiento cheese, combine the cheeses, onion, mayonnaise and yogurt in a bowl. Stir until well combined. Add the pimientos and 42

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EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM

hot sauce to taste. Season with salt and pepper and set aside. Cut the cucumbers into 1-inch-thick rounds, discarding the ends, but leaving the skin on. Using a small spoon or melon baller, scoop the seeds and some of the flesh out of each round (be careful not to go all the way through) to form a small cup. To serve, fill each cup with about 1 teaspoon of the pimiento cheese. Serve immediately. Calories 52 • Fat 4 g • Carbs .7 g • Fiber .1 g • Protein 4 g


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43


diet, can you?” It’s not about “no,” it’s about saying “yes!” I can have anything as long as I am accountable with my exercise and stick to my plan. So, believe me, I am going to gnaw on this bone until it shines. 4 peaches (about 1¼ lb.), halved, pitted and quartered 2 medium ripe tomatoes, seeded and quartered 1 T. canola oil 1 sweet onion, chopped 1 T. finely chopped fresh ginger ¼ c. apple cider vinegar ¼ c. honey 2 T. bourbon ¼ c. coarse kosher salt, plus more for seasoning Freshly ground black pepper ¼ c. firmly packed brown sugar 2 c. boiling water 3 c. ice cubes 4 center-cut, bone-in pork chops, about 1-inch thick, well trimmed In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, puree the peaches and tomatoes until smooth; set aside. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the ginger and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the reserved peach-tomato puree, vinegar, honey and bourbon; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat, then decrease the heat to simmer. Cook until the mixture is reduced by half and thickened, about 20 minutes. Taste and adjust for the seasoning with salt and pepper. Reserve ¼ cup sauce for basting the chops, and keep the remaining sauce warm in the saucepan until ready to serve. Meanwhile, place the remaining ¼ cup salt and brown sugar in a medium heatproof bowl. Pour the 2 cups boiling water over the mixture and stir to dissolve. Add the ice cubes and stir to cool. Add the pork chops, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and refrigerate to marinate, about 30 minutes. (Do not marinate any longer or the pork will be too salty. If you can’t cook it right at the 30-minute mark, remove the pork from the marinade and refrigerate until ready to continue.) Remove from the brine, rinse well, and thoroughly dry pat with paper towels. Set aside.

BOURBON GRILLED PORK CHOPS WITH PEACH BARBECUE SAUCE Serves 4 and makes 3 cups sauce Pork chops are a tender, quick-cooking cut of meat. In fact, so quick-cooking that they are actually very easy to overcook. Cooking these chops on the bone, instead of using boneless chops, will help the pork cook more evenly, and make them less likely to dry out. Just make sure to trim away as much fat as possible for healthier results. The tangy Peach Barbecue Sauce, flavored with the zip of ginger and vinegar, and sweetened with natural honey, would be incredible on grilled or roasted chicken, as well. I’ll be honest with you, this is a splurge meal since we’re cooking the meat on the bone and serving it with barbecue sauce—a plan-for-it, make-sure-to-work-out-that-day dinner. But, it’s worth it! I find it so depressing for someone to say to me, “Oh, you can’t have that on your 44

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Season the pork chops with pepper. Prepare a charcoal fire using about 6 pounds of charcoal and burn until the coals are completely covered with a thin coating of light gray ash, 20 to 30 minutes. Spread the coals evenly over the grill bottom, position the grill rack above the coals, and heat until medium-hot (when you can hold your hand 5 inches above the grill surface for no longer than 3 or 4 seconds). Or, for a gas grill, turn all burners to high, close the lid, and heat until very hot, 10 to 15 minutes. Or, preheat a grill pan over medium-high heat until hot. Place the pork chops in the grill pan or on the grill and grill for 3 to 5 minutes per side or until the internal temperature reaches 145°, brushing with Peach Barbecue Sauce in the last few minutes. Remove to a plate and cover with aluminum foil to rest and let the juices redistribute, 3 to 5 minutes. Serve immediately with reserved warm sauce on the side. Pork Chop: Calories 327 • Fat 13 g • Carbs 7 g • Fiber .4 g • Protein 44 g Peach Barbecue Sauce (per tablespoon): Calories 19 • Fat .4 g • Carbs 4 g • Fiber .4 g • Protein .3 g


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CLAIRE’S CREAM CHEESE SWIRL BROWNIES Makes 16 2-inch square brownies These are what I like to call “grown woman” brownies. These are not PTA bake sale brownies. These are dark, rich, knock-your-socks-off chocolate brownies. I was actually bribed for this recipe before the publication of this cookbook. How’d I do it? I have a friend Claire Perez, a French-trained pastry chef, to thank. It may seem counterintuitive to seek assistance from a chef who worked with the master chefs of butter and confection, Jacques Torres and Pierre Hermé, for a “lightened up” brownie recipe. But Claire delivered the goods! 4 oz. reduced-fat cream cheese 1 c. plus 2 T. sugar ½ t. pure vanilla extract 2 large eggs, at room temperature ¾ c. whole-wheat pastry flour ½ c. cocoa powder ¾ t. baking powder ½ t. fine sea salt ¼ c. canola oil 6 oz. best-quality semisweet chocolate, finely chopped ½ c. low-fat buttermilk ½ c. unsweetened applesauce 2 t. pure vanilla extract Heat the oven to 325°. Spray an 8-inch square baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the cream cheese, the 2 tablespoons of sugar and the vanilla, stirring until creamy and smooth. Separate one of the eggs, reserving the white for later use, and add the yolk to the cream cheese mixture. Stir to combine, then set aside. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt; set aside. In a medium saucepan, heat the oil and chocolate over medium heat, whisking until the chocolate is melted. Whisk in the remaining 1 cup sugar and stir until melted. Add the buttermilk, applesauce and vanilla. Remove from the heat. Add the remaining whole egg and the reserved egg white, whisking constantly until incorporated to prevent the eggs from curdling. Add the reserved flour mixture, mixing until just combined. Transfer brownie batter to the prepared pan. Using a tablespoon, drop 9 dollops of the cream cheese mixture on top of the brownie batter. Draw the tip of a sharp knife or skewer through the two batters in a criss-cross fashion to create a swirled effect. Bake the brownies until the top is just firm to the touch, rotating halfway through baking, about 40 minutes. Let cool completely in the pan on a wire rack. Coat a serrated knife with nonstick cooking spray and cut into 16 squares. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 3 days. Calories 199 • Fat 9 g • Carbs 27 g • Fiber 2 g • Protein 3 g 46

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See Virginia Willis at Edible Austin’s SXSW SouthBites panel:

FOOD TRANSFORMERS: REIMAGINING FOOD TRADITIONS Virginia Willis will join Michael Fojtasek (Olamaie) and Tastu Aikawa (Ramen Tatsu-Ya) as these three dynamic chefs share their inspiration for how they have transformed time-honored food traditions into hot tastes for today’s palates. Moderated by Edible Austin publisher Marla Camp, this panel will be featured on SXSW’s SouthBites program at the Driskill Hotel during SXSW Interactive Festival, March 12 through 14. Exact session dates and times will be announced in January. Visit edibleaustin.com for details and updates.


WHAT WE’RE DRINKING

WITH FRESH BY M AT T M CG I N N I S

P

airing wine with food can be

White is an ideal pick. Made from a blend

straightforward with a few helpful

of roussanne, chardonnay and viognier

tips. Match the weight of the wine

grapes, it has lemon, peach and honey

with the weight of the food: Light foods go

flavors with just enough weight to soothe

better with crisp, light wines; heavy foods

the sting of the peppers. $16

are better with big wines, regardless of whether they’re red or white. And any food

Claire’s Cream Cheese Swirl Brownies

that benefits from a squeeze of lemon, such

(page 46). The decadent, dense, moist

as fish, will go well with sauvignon blanc or

and creamy brownies oozing with dark

similarly tart white wines (but avoid pair-

chocolate call for an equally lust-in-

ing these wines with sweet foods). Here’s

ducing dessert wine. The Haak Win-

what we’re drinking with recipes found in

ery Jacquez Port, made from Jacquez

this Fresh issue:

grapes grown near the Gulf Coast, plays well with its own chocolate flavors lay-

Lightened-Up Pimiento Cheese (page 42). A Southern staple, pimiento cheese is a

ered with dried plum, blueberry and caramel. $17

creamy, savory treat with satisfying flavors that beg for a bold red wine. You can’t go

Poached

Perch

in

Parchment

wrong with a tempranillo from Texas. The

(page 27). This delicate, light fish is well

bouncy blackberry, zippy cherry and black

matched with a bright and lively white

plum flavors of the Spicewood Vineyards

wine such as Lewis Wines 2014 Swim

2012 Tempranillo Texas High Plains is a

Spot. The slightly fizzy wine, made with

lovely match for the tangy cheese. $24

blanc du bois grapes, has energetic flavors of peach, pear and citrus to bring the herb-

Braised Collards in Tomato-Onion Gravy (page 42). This complex dish with

al ingredients to life and tame the heat of the red pepper flakes. $14

the complementary flavors of bitter collards in smoky, savory gravy is excellent

Bourbon Grilled Pork Chops (page

with a fruity, yet dry, rosé wine. The crisp and light Brennan

44). Sweet, tangy and smoky flavors are an irresistible com-

Vineyards 2014 Mourvèdre Dry Rosé, with its ripe straw-

bination. Bending Branch Winery 2012 Texas Tannat has

berry, raspberry and pomegranate flavors, pleasantly accen-

the goods to handle the sweetness from the peach and hon-

tuates this dish. $20

ey, the spice of the ginger and the grilled goodness. Made from the tannat grape grown in France and Uruguay, this

Vegetable Corn Bread (page 40). Sweetness from the

powerful red wine has blackberry, plum, black cherry, coffee

fresh corn and spiciness from the chilies need a white wine

and cocoa flavors—along with good acidity that pairs well

with a little bit of heft. The Llano Estacado 2014 “1836”

with pork off the grill. $30

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edible BEAUTY

A NATURAL CLEAN BY K AT H Y W H I T E • P H OTO G RA P H Y BY J E N N A N O RT H C U T T

B

eginning in the 1970s, skin care experts and advertisers alike advised that “oil-free” skin cleansing products were best for people with oily, sensitive or acne-prone skin. This

is ironic, because the primary ingredient of quality soap—real, natural soap that cleans and nourishes the skin without irritation—has always been oil. But processes and ingredients changed over time, and our skin suffered for it. Today, more and more consumers are rediscovering the benefits of cleansing with natural oils, and giving the ancient recipes and pure ingredients newfound respect. The earliest recorded reference to soap dates back to 2800 B.C. in ancient Babylonia, and soap was used for bathing in Egypt around 1550 B.C., but actual soapmaking (primarily performed in Italy and Spain) didn’t become well known until the 8th century. By the late 18th century, advertising campaigns in Europe and America promoted awareness of the relationship between health and cleanliness, and the first industrially manufactured bar soaps became available to the public (although daily bathing, as practiced today, really didn’t become the accepted standard until private homes were built with indoor plumbing). A shortage of vegetable oils and fats during both World Wars, though, resulted in soap manufacturers turning to more readily available (and cheaper) synthetic surfactants, detergents and petroleum products to make cleansing bars. As a result, the art of soapmaking languished and almost completely died as handmade soap came to be regarded as old-fash-

Makes 8 ounces

ioned and primitive. Today, the demand for natural skin care products of all kinds has steadily risen, and many consumers are actively choosing to avoid harsh synthetic ingredients (the worst offender being synthetic fragrance). Skin care product manufacturers are taking notice, too—expanding their lines to include products derived from common but highly beneficial natural oils, such as coconut, olive, castor and macadamia nut, as well as more exotic oils, such as argan, tamanu, moringa, sea buckthorn and camelina. In fact, some prestigious cosmetic companies now sell facial serums made primarily from exotic botanical oils and extracts. (La Mer’s “The Renewal Oil” retails for $240 per ounce, which seems like a bargain compared to the price of Chanel’s “Sublimage L’Extrait,” which rings up for $650—for a half ounce.) But cleansing the skin with natural, plant-based oils doesn’t have to be overly complicated or costly. In fact, it’s easy to make your own cleansing products right at home. Here are a few simple recipes to get you started. 48

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COCONUT OIL WHIP

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This whip makes an excellent moisturizer for the body and face, a deep conditioning mask for hair, a tamer for hair frizz and fly-away strands, a safe and gentle makeup remover, a luscious lip balm and has myriad other uses as well. In whipped form, coconut oil is much easier to dispense and apply. Only a small dab is needed for most applications. 8 oz. virgin coconut oil, chilled (oil must be solid) 10–20 drops essential oil, such as lavender, lemongrass or sweet orange (optional) Place the chilled coconut oil in a 4-cup container. Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, whip the oil for 5 to 7 minutes until light and very creamy in appearance. Add essential oil, if using, and whip for an additional minute to disperse evenly. Spoon into a container with a tight-fitting lid and store in a cool, dry place. An ambient temperature of 76° or above will result in the whip deflating and liquefying, which only affects the texture. (Note: Avoid getting water in the container. Use a spoon or cosmetic spatula to scoop out.)


BOTANICAL OIL SOAP Makes 2 pounds (8 or more bars) This is a simple, basic recipe for beginning soap makers; all of the required ingredients and equipment can be found in the home, kitchen, grocery store or hardware store. Natural soap requires sodium hydroxide (lye). Hardware stores sell lye as a drain cleaner— look for “100% lye” or “sodium hydroxide” on the label. Never use aluminum bowls, utensils or molds with lye or raw soap. Do not mix lye solution in glass containers. Soap-making requires precise measurements, which is why this recipe is calculated in smaller units of grams and milliliters. Equipment Needed: • Safety gear is a must when handling caustic lye. Use protective goggles (from the hardware store) and water proof gloves (made from nitrile or neoprene, such as yellow Playtex gloves). • Long-sleeved shirt, long pants and closed-toe shoes (do not wear fleece, because static electricity can attract lye beads to your clothes) • Hand blender (also called a stick blender) • Small kitchen or postal scale with a “tare” button (To ensure the scale’s accuracy, weigh a nickel. It should weigh 5 grams.) • Two small (2-cup-size) stainless steel or thick plastic bowls • One large (1½- to 2-quart-size) stainless steel, glass or heavy plastic bowl • Silicone or heavy plastic spatula for stirring • Cardboard shoe box for a mold • Freezer paper to line the shoe box 109 g. sodium hydroxide (lye) 185 ml. distilled water 516 ml. olive oil 227 ml. coconut oil 57 ml. castor oil (found in grocery or drug stores in the laxative section) Essential oils (optional for scent). The standard percentage of essential oil to use is 3% to 5% of the total oil portion of the recipe, which in this case is 800 ml. (800 ml. x 3% = 24 ml. 800 ml. x 5% = 40 ml. If using lavender oil, for example, use the maximum amount of 40 ml. If using lemongrass, use the minimum amount of 24 ml.) Clear a work area on a table or countertop and cover it with newspaper or sheets of wax paper to catch drips. For safety, make sure small children and pets are not underfoot. Put on the goggles and gloves and weigh the lye in one small bowl (use the scale’s tare button, which allows you to measure the weight of a substance without counting the weight of the container it’s in). Weigh the distilled water in the other bowl. In a well-ventilated area, pour the lye into the water (note: always pour lye into water, never water into lye). Then stir the solution until the lye is completely dissolved (it tends to stick to the bottom of the container, so make sure all of the lye beads or crystals are stirred from the bottom). Do not put your face directly above the lye solution container and avoid breathing the fumes (fumes will be strong for about 5 to 10 minutes). The lye solution will be very hot—set it aside in a safe place where no one will disturb it. Let the lye solution cool for 1 to 2 hours until the outside of the container feels warm—about 100°. While the lye solution is cooling, prepare the mold and the oils (no gloves or goggles needed for this part). To prep the mold, cut 2 pieces of freezer paper so they will sit

inside the shoe box, overlapping at the corners (the first piece should be slightly wider on two sides, where it will overlap about an inch or more with the second piece). Miter and fold the corners under (like wrapping a present) so it lies flat, then cut the second piece and place it over the first piece. Smooth the paper so that it’s as flat as possible—taping it down so it stays in place when the soap is poured. Next, weigh the coconut oil in the large bowl (again, use the tare button) and microwave for 30 seconds, or until liquid (do not overheat). Weigh the olive oil and castor oil using the tare button, then add both to the melted coconut oil. If using essential oils, add those to the oil mixture. When the lye solution has cooled and the oils have been prepped, put on the goggles and gloves—because it’s time to make soap! Carefully and slowly pour the lye solution into the oils. Use the stick blender to mix—making sure the bell (mixing end) of the blender stays submerged in the raw soap while mixing to avoid splashing. Raw soap is caustic for a few hours even after blending, so avoid getting it on your skin. Blend for 1 to 2 minutes, stop the blender, stir for a minute or so, then blend again—alternating between blending and stirring—until the raw soap is about the consistency of thin pudding. This is called the “trace” stage, when drops of raw soap dripped onto the surface of the body of soap will leave a slight impression. When soap reaches the trace stage, slowly pour it into the prepared mold. Gently tap the mold on the countertop a few times to force any small bubbles to rise to the surface. Loosely cover the mold with a towel and set aside where it can sit undisturbed for about 24 hours. Check the soap after 24 hours—it should be about as firm as a hard cheese. Cut the soap into squares or rectangles with a long-bladed knife, place the soap bars into a cardboard box and allow to cure for 4 to 6 weeks.

MORE ABOUT LYE Lye is a chemical reagent that causes fats/oils to convert into soap. If soap is made correctly, no lye remains after the process. Modern soap makers use lye calculators and factor in an excess of fats/oils to make the soap milder and more conditioning to the skin. Before commercially made lye (sodium hydroxide) became available, lye was made from leaching water through wood ashes—a tedious process with no way to measure the strength or purity of the lye. Modern soapmaking is much more precise.

COCONUT OIL SUGAR BODY SCRUB Makes 8 ounces This scrub gently exfoliates and moisturizes the body. (Do not use on the face.) 4 oz. virgin coconut oil, chilled (oil must be solid) A few drops essential oil, such as lavender, lemongrass or sweet orange (optional) 4 oz. granulated sugar or turbinado sugar Place the chilled coconut oil in a 4-cup container. Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, whip the oil for 5 to 7 minutes until light and very creamy in appearance. Add the essential oil, if using, then add the sugar and stir to combine. Spoon the mixture into a container with a tight-fitting lid. Apply to damp skin and massage lightly until sugar is dissolved; rinse with warm to hot water and pat dry. An ambient temperature of 76° or above will result in the coconut oil deflating and liquefying, which only affects the texture. (Note: Avoid getting water in the container. Use a spoon or cosmetic spatula to scoop out.) EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM

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SUSTAINABLE FOOD CENTER

I

t wasn’t that long ago that a few horse-drawn wagons piled high with wooden crates of fresh produce would pull into Austin’s town square to service a modest population. Often, the crates

had eye-catching labels—markers that clearly identified the food, when it was harvested and the local farm of origin. Fast forward to present-day Austin, where a rapidly growing sustainable-food movement has dozens upon dozens of vendors now claiming, to a population of almost one million people, that their foods are “locally grown” and “fresh.” But how does a consumer know for certain—especially if they’re new to town? Sustainable Food Center (SFC) recently helped gather a group of area farmers, farmers market managers and local food advocates to act as a steering committee to explore this very question. Multiple ideas were tossed around, but as if in a respectful nod to the past, a campaign similar to the good ol’ crate label won out. The newly founded Buy Fresh Buy Local Central Texas chapter is designed to make it easier for Central Texas consumers to find their local markets and identify fresh, local foods and the local farms of origin (founders define “local” as farms within 150 miles of Austin, for example). The chapter’s newly launched website provides an easy-to-navigate interactive map of markets and farms, as well as a comprehensive list of market and farm members. And the Buy Fresh

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Buy Local Central Texas banners, posters, business cards—even ads on mobile devices—create an organized cohesiveness. Market managers and farmers have responded positively to the recognizable logo and campaign. Upon seeing the final logo for the first time, Glenn Foore of Springdale Farm in Austin exclaimed, “I

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The new chapter is a member of the national FoodRoutes Netty-based groups all over the country that are working to strengthen regional markets for locally grown foods. This initial effort is supported with funding through a Department of Agriculture Farmers

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paign. It creates a professional and unified umbrella for marketing

work—an organization that provides technical support to communi-

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50

gushed, “I adore the design of the new Buy Fresh Buy Local camus Central Texas farmers while drawing you into a story with its art.”

Culinary herbs for chefs— and fruit trees, veggies and native plants for gardeners

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want a poster of this!” And Marysol Valle of Fat Frog Farm in Mullin

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Market Promotion Program grant. Another round of mobile ads is slated for the spring, and recruitment of Buy Fresh Buy Local Central Texas members (membership is free) is ongoing. —Andrew Smiley For more info, visit buylocalcentex.org


edible NATION

CHEF COLICCHIO OUT OF THE KITCHEN AND INTO FOOD POLICY Q & A W I T H SA M U E L F RO M A RT Z • P H OTO G RA P H Y BY M A R K N O B L E

T

om Colicchio, best known for his role as head judge on Bravo’s “Top Chef,” is sitting at a table at the Ritz-Carlton in Washington, D.C., talking about his new and very differ-

ent gig as food correspondent on MSNBC. This comes after a career that has evolved from a chef and owner of an award-winning restaurant empire to a food activist and producer of the well-received documentary film about hunger, “A Place at the Table,” with his wife, the director, Lori Silverbush. At the same time, he’s been a busy advocate in Washington through Food Policy Action. He sat down to talk about all his endeavors just after airing a documentary on MSNBC, “Just Eat It”—about food waste, which amounts to 40 percent of all food produced—and hosting a thoughtful roundtable on the topic. How did the MSNBC show come about and what do you I loved the piece on food waste, and the day after it aired I

want to achieve with it?

was making guacamole for lunch. The grape tomatoes looked

It started after we made the documentary on hunger, “A Place

wrinkled. I was about to toss them but then realized, “No,

at the Table.” I made appearances on MSNBC and started coming

this is guacamole. I can just chop them up!”

down to Washington, D.C. to focus on hunger issues. “Top Chef ”

Yes, and this is what food waste documentary should do: It

had given me a platform to start talking about these issues. I had

should make you feel guilty about wasting food and lead you to

also done a talk show on a boat, on YouTube, called “Hooked Up,”

ask, “What can I do?” You ended up saying, “I can’t just throw it

where I took people out and interviewed them while we were fish-

out; there’s value to it.” At the live roundtable after the documenta-

ing. I liked the format, so I approached MSNBC about a food policy

ry, I mentioned I’m two generations removed from the Depression,

show. They were lukewarm about the idea, but in the meantime

when you’d never dream of throwing something out. It just didn’t

they offered to bring me on as a food correspondent.

happen.

Right now the show’s going to be on MSNBC/Shift—a digital platform—as a way to appeal to a younger audience. Millennials really

Yeah, my dad who grew up in the Depression would eat everything. Right, you’d eat it or it would be repurposed for the next day. People knew how to do that, and two generations on we don’t know

care about these issues. They don’t really care about who’s opening a new restaurant. But they do want to know where their food comes from, the labor it takes to produce it and the environmental effects. Digital’s probably a better platform to reach that audience.

how to do that anymore. We don’t value food because from the

So I want to take some of these issues around food and tell the

1960s onward, it became about processed food, cheap food and fast

stories about them, not so much the policies and politics around

food. There’s no value on it, so you just toss it. It’s one of those food

them. If you lead with the story, there could be some policy fixes,

topics that people can really relate to. I don’t think there are too

but I think people are more interested in stories. And there’s a mil-

many people who would say, “Who cares?”

lion stories out there. Food stories are everywhere. EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM

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“People have to understand that there’s a cost to cheap food. And that cost isn’t really being borne in the marketplace.” —Tom Colicchio But are there particular issues you want to hit?

to cook and that’s enough?” I don’t think so. I’m not involved in

There are many, but here’s an example: the school lunch debate.

these issues because I’m a chef; I do it because I care and the last

It’s great to frame that debate but also look at people who are do-

time I checked, that’s how a democracy functions. You need to get

ing great and innovative things in getting healthy foods to kids. I

involved. Certainly I don’t get much out of it; I’m not paid to do it.

want to show that there are alternative solutions coming from the grassroots. It’s one thing to have a TV show, but it’s another thing

Is this how you measure success now, moving the needle

to take a story and create community around it, to create solutions

on these issues rather than, say, opening another restaurant?

around it. We did it with “A Place at the Table,” too. How do you get like-minded people to solve these problems?

No, I just opened one a couple of weeks ago and I still get a kick out of it! No, to me, it all kind of meshes together. In terms of success, I don’t really think about it and I never have. When I went

So obviously the emphasis is on story, personality, solu-

on TV with “Top Chef,” I didn’t count ratings, but I didn’t want my

tions. It sounds a lot different from the policy work you’re

industry to laugh and say, “This is absolute junk and I can’t believe

doing in D.C.

you did this.” Success to me was season two, season three, when all

It has to be. If you stick to straight policy and politics, you’ll bore the hell out of people and it’s too polarizing.

my friends said, “Can I come on as a judge?” Then I knew we were doing something right. With politics, you’ve got to keep coming back and you’ll find people who will open their doors, take more

Except people on Capitol Hill.

meetings and pay attention a little more.

I don’t mind doing that; it’s what we’re doing in Food Policy Action. But I don’t know if that’s the best way to lead. You set up

So you’ve got to show up.

the issue first in a way people understand it, explore its ramifica-

They tell you that in the kitchen too. You’ve got to show up! If

tions and then perhaps you can provide some policy solutions. But

you want to be good, you’ve got to keep showing up. You’ve got to

I think you need to highlight that story first.

work hard. It’s repetition; it’s the only way to get better.

People have to understand that there’s a cost to cheap food. And that cost isn’t really being borne in the marketplace. In certain

Obviously MSNBC is on one side of the political spectrum, Fox

parts of Iowa, there’s no drinking water right now because it’s pol-

is on the other. Do you feel these food issues will resonate with

luted from agricultural runoff. The cost is not being borne by the

the food movement, with progressives, but miss the red states?

consumer or the producer of the food, but somewhere down the road someone’s going to pay for that.

Obviously that’s the risk of being on MSNBC. But I hope that a lot of people who watch “Top Chef” and who don’t care about politics are going to come along for the ride and then begin to look at things

You’re often described as a chef and food activist. Does that present a tension for you with this show?

differently. If you talk to people, there’s more commonality than a divide on some of these issues, such as food waste. I don’t think any-

No, I think that’s fine. Listen, somehow I ended up having a

one wants to see more food waste. Or hunger—no one wants to see

soapbox so I can either use it for good things, or not. People ask

hungry people. Now we may have a difference of opinion on how to

me, “Why are you doing this? Why are you meeting people on the

fix that, but there’s no one that’s pro-hunger. So I think it’s a matter

Hill? Are you getting anywhere?” I don’t know. After a day of meet-

of getting people around the table and maybe that’s what food can

ings on the Hill, you’re exhausted, tired, you’re saying the same

do. You can get both sides of the argument and actually have a civil

thing over and over again, you’re going from meeting to meeting,

conversation as opposed to just using talking heads to bolster your

and some people are engaged and others are, like, whatever. But

argument. We’ve talked about that: Perhaps I can get a Paul Ryan and

then, I was up on 125th Street in Harlem for a Marcus Samuelsson

Jim McGovern around the table and discuss hunger and how to fix it.

event. I’m walking down the street and there is a butcher shop that says “antibiotic-free meat,” so it is happening. People are listening.

We’ve talked a lot about hunger. Are there other issues where you hoped to get through to the public on and didn’t?

Didn’t one opinion piece tell you to get back into the kitchen?

Look, it’s ongoing. The fight never ends, so again, walking by a

Oh yeah, that was in the Wall Street Journal. My response was,

store on 125th Street and seeing “antibiotic-free meat,” those are

“You’re saying the only thing chefs should do is teach people how 52

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EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM

those little gains. Little by little, change is happening.


Plant Now for a Fruitful Harvest G i f t s • Ho u s e w a r e s • G a r d e n • Ha r d w a r e • Fe e d

NONPROFIT KEEPS PROGRESSIVE FOOD POLICY IN FRONT OF CONGRESS Food Policy Action (FPA) was founded in 2012 by Tom Colicchio, Ken Cook and other food policy leaders to advocate for progressive food and farming legislation by educating elected officials and holding them accountable on their voting record. FPA focuses on promoting policies that support healthy diets, reduce hunger, improve food access and affordability, uphold the rights and dignity of food and farm workers, increase transparency, improve public health, reduce the risk of foodborne illness, support local and regional food systems, protect and maintain sustainable fisheries, treat farm animals humanely and reduce the environmental impact of farming and food production. It’s a big agenda, but according to Claire Benjamin, FPA’s executive director, “It really is about education and accountability. If

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we can educate the public on the key issues, show that there are legislative solutions that can help solve some of the most critical problems in our food supply chain, and let voters know how their elected officials are voting on these issues, we know we can change the national dialogue on food policy.” Chef Tom Colicchio is the public face of FPA and he makes frequent trips to Washington to meet with lawmakers on issues that impact the food system, such as GMO labeling and social safety net programs like SNAP (formerly food stamps). Colicchio also stays highly visible on behalf of FPA by giving frequent lectures, participating in TED Talks and key food policy conferences and attending this year’s State of the Union to hear President Obama talk about priorities and common ground for 2015. “Few things have as much direct impact on our day-to-day lives as food,” says Colicchio. “Food Policy Action scores the members of the House and Senate on votes that impact the food system,” he says. “Consumers are hungry for more information about how to fix our food system and how their elected officials are voting on policies that impact food and how it is grown in this country.” For more information, visit foodpolicyaction.org Samuel Fromartz is editor in chief of the Food & Environment Reporting Network, a nonprofit news organization focusing on food, agriculture and environmental health. He’s also the author of “In Search of the Perfect Loaf: A Home Baker’s Odyssey.” This article was produced in collaboration with FERN, the Food and Environmental Reporting Network. EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM

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EATING HER CURDS AND WHEY BY KATE PAYNE • PHOTOGRAPHY BY JO ANN SANTANGELO

R

icotta cheese is a classic, yet often under-appreciated, sta-

Other popular cheeses in this family include paneer in Indian cui-

ple in Italian cuisine. My education on the subject began

sine and queso fresco or queso blanco in Mexican fare.

when I married an Italian, whose food traditions all seem to

My own personal love affair with ricotta began when I was mak-

include ricotta in one way or another. Thanksgiving dinner’s pre-

ing yogurt and French-style ice cream on a weekly basis. I always

game is a big saucy pan of lasagna and Grandpa Raymond’s ricotta

had milk in the house and only one person who drank it occasion-

pie—a recipe, passed down from his mother, that also makes an

ally. Often, I found the remaining milk in the jug had begun to sour.

appearance at Easter and Christmas.

This kick-started research into where I might divert these last

Ricotta is the Italian word for “re-cook,” a fitting translation be-

pours away from the drain.

cause the traditional way to make ricotta cheese involves reheating

Spoilage happens when the good bacteria in the milk consume

the whey left over from making sheep’s milk cheeses and mozzarel-

the milk sugars (lactose) and, in turn, produce lactic acid—aka sour

la. In the world of cheese, this is a simple heat- and acid-coagulated

milk. Casein, a player within the grouping of milk solids—a com-

cheese that doesn’t require rennet or any aging process—making

bination of proteins, sugar, minerals, milk fat, vitamins and trace

ricotta an ideal project for the newbie cheesemaker to try at home.

elements—is the protein responsible for curdling because of its

54

FRESH 2016

EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM


phosphorous content, which causes coagulation at a pH of 4.6 and lower. Heat, combined with acidic conditions, causes the casein

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in the milk or whey to bind and trap moisture and fat into curds. There are numerous ways to make ricotta—but they all begin with the base of choice (fresh whey, whole milk, cream, a combination of all three or even soured milk) and an acidifier (lemon juice, vinegar, or citric or tartaric acid dissolved in water). Of all the acidifiers, vinegar (distilled white or cider vinegar are my favorites for this job) produces the most consistent results. I actu-

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whey doesn’t become clear as the curds separate out and rise to the top. Select milk with a higher fat content for best results—you

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can even add heavy whipping cream to the milk for creamier results and a higher yield. Though using milk results in a richer, creamier ricotta and a larger yield, give whey cheese a shot at least once to see how traditional ricotta tastes. When sourcing whey for a cheese project, be sure it’s been no longer than three hours since its initial straining. Other sources for fresh whey beyond cheese-making include straining yogurt or kefir.

WHEY RICOTTA Yields 6–8 oz. 2 gal. fresh whey (use it within 3 hours of straining) ½ c. distilled white vinegar Sea salt, to taste Place the whey in a large pot and slowly heat to 200°. Using a heatproof spatula, stir constantly to keep it from scorching. When the whey reaches 200°, remove the pot from the heat and gently stir in the vinegar. The whey will begin to curdle and some of the curds will rise to the top, while others will settle on the bottom. Place a large strainer or colander lined with dampened fine-weave muslin or a flour sack towel in the sink. Gently ladle the mixture into the strainer and allow the remaining whey to drain. When all the curds are in the strainer, continue to drain the ricotta for approximately 1 hour for a soft ricotta, or up to 6 for a firmer ricotta. Mix the finished ricotta with salt, to taste.

MILK RICOTTA

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Yields about 8 oz. 1 qt. whole milk (or mix the milk with up to 1 c. of cream to measure 1 qt.) 1 T. distilled white vinegar Sea salt, to taste Heat the milk to 180° and remove from the heat. Add the vinegar. Curds and whey should begin separating immediately. Stir gently for a minute to facilitate curdling, then strain the ricotta through a colander lined with dampened, fine-weave muslin or a flour sack towel for 10 minutes for a creamier cheese or up to an hour for a drier cheese. Add salt to the finished cheese to taste, or experiment with adding honey or herbs for a flavored spread.

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RICOTTA PIE Yields 1 10-inch pie, or 1 9-inch springform pie

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This is a covered crust confection from my wife’s family tradition, but other family friends in Boston’s North End also prepare it as a lattice pie. The sweet, cookie-dough-like crust is essential (I learned after baking it in my regular, not-so-sweet piecrust way). Bakeries often add mini chocolate chips or lemon zest to the filling for a twist on the classic tradition. For the crust: 2 c. flour 1¼ t. baking powder ½ t. salt 3 T. butter, softened ½ c. sugar 1 egg 1 T. whiskey 1 t. vanilla Up to ¼ c. cold water Powdered sugar for dusting

For the filling: 8 eggs 1 c. sugar 1 qt. ricotta Splash of whiskey Egg yolk for brushing the crust

Heat the oven to 350°. For the crust, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt and set aside. Mix the butter, sugar and egg until fluffy. Stir in the whiskey and vanilla and then beat in the dry mixture. Add water by the tablespoon to bring the crust together, if needed. Dump the dough out onto a well-floured work surface and knead to blend well. Divide and shape the dough into 2 discs, one a little larger than the other. Roll the larger one between 2 sheets of wax paper to 1 /8-inch thickness for the bottom crust. Place in a pie pan and trim the overhang. Roll out the top crust in the same way to have it ready when you make the filling. For the filling, beat the eggs until foamy. Gradually add the sugar. Add the ricotta and whiskey and stir to combine well. Pour into the prepared crust. Crimp the edges of the top crust to the bottom crust. Brush the top crust with a beaten egg yolk and score with a sharp knife to allow movement and venting as the filling expands. Bake for 1 hour. The filling will still jiggle when pulled out of the oven but will firm up from residual heat as it cools. Allow the pie to cool completely before cutting. Sprinkle generously with powdered sugar to serve. Store refrigerated for up to 5 days.


BACK OF THE HOUSE

FUKUMOTO SUSHI & YAKITORI IZAKAYA BYJENNA NORTHCUTT

U

pon entering Fukumoto, the traditional Japanese greeting

Chef Kazu Fukumoto, a veteran of Musashino Sushi Dokoro,

of “Irasshaimase!” rings out from the entire staff. Once

opened Fukumoto in the fall of 2015. “An authentic yakitori place

inside, hungry customers peruse handwritten menus de-

is what’s missing from the Austin dining scene,” he says. “I want-

tailing delectable dishes made with fresh, local vegetables, as well

ed to give people a chance to truly experience what I love to eat

as savory favorites such as chicken-heart-and-gizzard yakitori

when I travel—whether it’s to San Francisco, New York or back

(skewered, grilled meats) and traditional sushi.

home to Japan!” EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM

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Previous page: Chef Kap Sounraj delivers a daikon cooked in dashi with pork miso sauce to the sushi bar. Opposite page: Pulling the yakitori skewers as orders roll in; The menus and daily specials—all handwritten; Chef Christopher Simpson manning the yakitori station. This page: Owner and Executive Chef Kazu Fukumoto’s sushi station ready to serve; Kinoko tempura with king trumpet, shiitake, shimeji and enoki mushrooms; Yakitori being plated; Chef Kazu Fukumoto putting the finishing touches on a platter of sushi. EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM

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THE DIRECTORY ARTISANAL FOODS

BAKERIES

Antonelli’s Cheese Shop

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Tiny Pies are just like grandma made only smaller. Both savory & sweet. We cater, offer corporate gifting ideas, deliver locally & ship nationally. 512-916-0184 5035 Burnet Rd. tinypies.com

Broken Arrow Ranch

BEVERAGES

We field harvest truly wild animals for high-quality free-range venison, antelope and wild boar meat. Diamond H Ranch Quail from Bandera also available. 800-962-4263 3296 Junction Hwy., Ingram brokenarrowranch.com

Edis Chocolates Handmade chocolate truffles and fine desserts, free of preservatives and additives. Our desserts are made with fair trade chocolate. Excellent gluten-free options. 512-795-9285 3808 Spicewood Springs Rd., Ste 102 edischocolates.com

Lick Honest Ice Creams Artisan ice creams celebrating the finest ingredients Texas has to offer! Handmade in small batches in our Austin kitchen. Natural, local and seasonal. 512-363-5622 203 S. Lamar Blvd. 512-609-8029 6555 Burnet Rd. ilikelick.com

Lone Star Foodservice Lone Star Foodservice is a famly-owned wholesale meat company, whose mission is to source and deliver the finest cuts of natural beef, pork and lamb to tables across Texas. 512-646-6218 1403 E. 6th St. lonestarfood.com

Pasta & Co. Austin’s only fresh pasta manufacturer serving the greater Austin area’s retail and wholesale pasta needs since 1983. 512-453-0633 3502 Kerbey Lane www.austinpasta.com

Becker Vineyards Winery, vineyards, and tasting room with wines for tasting and for sale. Lavender fields, lavender products and annual Lavender Fest. 830-644-2681 464 Becker Farms Rd., Stonewall beckervineyards.com

Bending Branch Winery Bending Branch Winery is a premier Hill Country winery with award-winning wines, including our signature Texas Tannat. Visit us Thurs-Sun. 830-995-2948 142 Lindner Branch Trail, Comfort 830-995-3394 Branch on High, 704 High St., Comfort bendingbranchwinery.com

Compass Rose Cellars Experience chef-inspired dining at our intimate winery with breathtaking Hill Country views at Compass Rose Cellars in Hye, TX. Worth the journey. 830-868-7799 1197 Hye-Albert Rd., Hye compassrosecellars.com

Lewis Wines Boutique producer of 100% Texas wines in Johnson City, Texas. 512-987-0660 3209 Highway 290 W., Johnson City lewiswines.com

Texas Hills Vineyard Winemaking, wine sales, tasting room, patio for picnics, gifts, award-winning wines, fun-loving staff and a beautiful place to visit. 930-868-2321 878 RR 2766, Johnson City texashillsvineyard.com

Texas Keeper Ciders Small-batch cider made in south Austin from 100% apples. Available in stores, bars, and restaurants throughout Austin, Houston, and DFW areas. 512-910-3409 12521 Twin Creeks Rd. texaskeeper.com

Twin Liquors Family owned and Authentically Austin™ since 1937 - Twin Liquors helps customers match wine and spirits to every occasion. 75 Central Texas locations. 1-855-350-TWIN (8946) 512-451-7400 1000 E. 41st St. #810 512-402-0060 12528 Texas 71, Bee Cave 512-872-4220 210 University Blvd, Ste. 120, Round Rock twinliquors.com

CATERING AND MEAL DELIVERY

Paula’s Texas Orange Liqueur & Paula’s Texas Lemon Liqueur—all natural and handmade in Austin since 2006. Available throughout Texas. paulastexasspirits.com

Coté Catering is a boutique farm-totable catering company dedicated to creating exciting, fresh cuisine for weddings, parties, and events of all kinds. Our seasonal, sustainable menus will entertain and delight your guests. 512-638-2144 cotecatering.com

A custom catering company specializing in tailored menus, incredible food and surprisingly personal service. 512-656-4348 401 Sabine St. Ste. B pinkavocadocatering.com

Fresh Texas-grown extra virgin olive oil from Carrizo Springs, infused olive oil and balsamic vinegar at farmers markets in Austin, SA, NB, Houston, Dallas. 877-461-4708 texasoliveranch.com

East Austin’s artisanal coffee roaster and one-stop shop offering a wide selection of certified organic coffees and coffee brewing accoutrements! 512-476-2279 1400 East 4th St texascoffeetraders.com

Experts in designing and building wood-burning ovens. Our handcrafted ovens are fire-breathing works of art. We are also a Forno Bravo pizza oven dealer. 512-222-6836 texasovenco.com

EDUCATION The Natural Epicurean At The Natural Epicurean, we train professional chefs, health coaches, and consumers in plant-based health-supportive culinary techniques. 512-476-2276 1700 S. Lamar Blvd. naturalepicurean.com

EVENTS SXSW Each March, South by Southwest® offers the unique convergence of original music, independent films, and emerging technologies. SXSW® is the destination for discovery. 512-467-7979 sxsw.com

FARMERS MARKETS Lone Star Farmers Market Providing fresh fruits, vegetables and quality products. Located at The Shops at the Galleria every Sunday from 10 am–2 pm in the Lowe’s parking lot. 512-924-7503 12611 Shops Pkwy., Ste. 100 Bee Cave lonestarfarmersmarket.com

FARMS Windy Hill Foods

Texas Coffee Traders Texas Olive Ranch

Texas Oven Co.

Coté Catering

Pink Avocado Catering Paula’s Texas Spirits

DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION

Spoon & Co. Catering It’s our business to delight you with the details, memorable events with mindfully chosen, prepared and presented food and a caring crew! 512-912-6784 spoonadco.com

Sustainable Texas meats. Boer goat meat, grassfed, grass-finished lamb and beef, pasture raised organic fed chicken and eggs. Pork, quail, veggies and more! 254-979-1988 122 N Plant Ave, Boerne 3000 Ranch Rd 573, Comanche windyhilltx.com

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FINANCIAL Capital Farm Credit Capital Farm Credit is your financial lending partner, providing loans for recreational land, home loans and small and large acreage tracts. 512-892-4425 5900 Southwest Pkwy., Ste. 501 512-715-9239 301 W. Polk St., Burnet 979-968-5750 456 N. Jefferson St., La Grange 512-398-3524 1418 S. Colorado St., Lockhart 830-626-6886 426 S. Seguin Ave., New Braunfels capitalfarmcredit.com

GROCERS Royal Blue Grocery Downtown Austin’s neighborhood grocer—with dairy, prepared foods, beer and wine, Royal Blue has it all, in a convenient and compact format. Catering too! 512-499-3993; 247 W. 3rd St. 512-476-5700; 360 Nueces St. 512-469-5888; 609 Congress Ave. 512-386-1617; 301 Brazos St., Ste. 101 512-480-0036; 51 Rainey St. royalbluegrocery.com

Wheatsville Food Co-op Serving up local, organic, sustainable and humanely raised food since 1976. Full service deli, hot bar, salad bar, espresso bar and eating area with wi-fi. 512-478-2667; 3101 Guadalupe St. 512-814-2888; 4001 S. Lamar Blvd. wheatsville.coop

Whole Foods Market Selling the highest quality natural and organic products. 512-542-2200 525 N. Lamar Blvd. 512-345-5003 9607 Research Blvd. 512-206-2730 12601 Hill Country Blvd., Bee Cave 512-358-2460 4301 W. William Cannon wholefoodsmarket.com

HEALTH AND BEAUTY DITI Imaging DITI Imaging is South Texas’ leading thermography provider with over 10 years experience providing a painfree, radiation-free means of breast screening. 210-705-1232 866-409-2506 Austin, Wimberley, Boerne, Kerrville and New Braunfels ditiimaging.com

Peoples Rx

Backbone Valley Nursery

Austin’s favorite pharmacy for more than 30 years, Peoples integrates nutrition, supplements and medicine with natural remedies and custom Rx compounding. 512-219-9499 13860 Hwy. 183 N., Ste. C 512-459-9090 4018 N. Lamar Blvd. 512-444-8866 3801 S. Lamar Blvd. 512-327-8877 4201 Westbank Dr. peoplesrx.com

A destination garden center with over 14 acres of plants, vegetables, orchids, trees, and landscape supplies. Once you find us you won’t forget us! 830-693-9348 4201 FM 1980, Marble Falls backbonevalleynursery.com

Wiseman Family Practice Wiseman Family Practice is an integrative medical practice in Austin, Tx that focuses on health education and natural approaches to wellness. 512-345-8970 2500 S. Lakeline Blvd. Ste. 100, Cedar Park 3345 Bee Caves Rd., Ste. 101 3801 S. Lamar Blvd. wisemanfamilypractice.com

It’s About Thyme Garden Center Top quality culinary herbs for chefs, and native plants for gardeners. A nursery with expert staff and pocket-friendly prices. Free lectures most Sundays. 512-280-1192 11726 Manchaca Rd. itsaboutthyme.com

Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center The Wildflower Center is a native plant botanic garden, a university research center and one of the 1,000 places to see before you die. 512-232-0100 4801 La Crosse Ave. wildflower.org

HOUSEWARES AND GIFTS The Great Outdoors Nursery Callahan’s General Store Austin’s real general store…hardware to western wear, from feed to seed! 512-385-3452 501 Bastrop Hwy. callahansgeneralstore.com

Der Küchen Laden Retail gourmet kitchen shop, featuring cookware, cutlery, bakeware, small electrics, textiles and kitchen gadgets. 830-997-4937 258 E. Main St., Fredericksburg littlechef.com

A garden store and so much more! 512-448-2992 2730 S. Congress Ave. gonursery.com

Natural Gardener We are a garden center and teaching facility dedicated to promoting organic time-tested gardening practices. 512-288-6113 8648 Old Bee Caves Rd. naturalgardeneraustin.com

LODGING AND TOURISM

Cooking classes, beautiful dining room venue for private events, hill country cabin rental. 830-833-0910 5818 RR 165, Dripping Springs juniperhillsfarm.com

NON-PROFIT Farmgrass Farmgrass raises critical funds for Central Texas farmers to keep them healthy, happy and growing yearround. 512-814-5134 farmgrass.org

PHOTOGRAPHY AND ART Blanton Museum of Art The Blanton Museum of Art, one of the foremost university art museums in the country, offers all visitors engaging experiences that connect art and ideas. 512-471-7324 200 E. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. blantonmuseum.org

PROFESSIONAL SERVICES Austin Label Company Custom Labels up to 10 x 20 on paper, foil, synthetics, multiple adhesives, embossing, hot foil and UV coatings. Proud members of Go Texan, FTA and TWGGA. 512-302-0204 1610 Dungan Ln. austinlabel.com

RESTAURANTS

The Herb Bar Best place to cure what ails you and a healing resource center since 1986. Our Optimal Health Advisers are highly trained, knowledgeable and compassionate. 512-444-6251 200 W. Mary St. theherbbar.com

Onion Creek Kitchens at Juniper Hills Farm

Brenham/Washington County CVB Visit Brenham and Washington County, home of the birthplace of Texas, Washington-on-the-Brazos State historic site. scenic drives, wineries and great lodging. 979-836-3696 115 W. Main St., Brenham visitbrenhamtexas.com

LANDSCAPE AND GARDENING

416 Bar & Grille Americana Cuisine - Full service restaurant serving dinner until midnight seven days a week. Saturday and Sunday brunch starting at 10 a.m. 416 craft cocktails. 512-206-0540 5011 Burnet Rd. #150 416barandgrille.com

Bullock Texas State History Museum Barton Springs Nursery Locally grown Texas native plants. Organic pest management. Environmentally friendly soil amendments. Beautiful gifts. 512-328-6655 3601 Bee Caves Rd. bartonspringsnursery.net

The Bullock Texas State History Museum includes three floors of exhibitions, an IMAX® theater, a 4D special-effects theater, café, and museum store. 512-936-8746 1801 N. Congress Ave. thestoryoftexas.com

Austin Beer Garden Brewing Co. Locally-sourced lunch and dinner. Craft brewery, live music, good people, dog friendly, creative community. #beermakesitbetter #ouratx 512-298-2242 1305 W. Oltorf St. theabgb.com

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Get to know the farmers in the Finger Lakes, the artisans of Michiana, the vintners in Vancouver and more as we serve up the best local food stories from the fields and kitchens of edible communities. edible BLUE RIDGE

No. 27 Spring 2013

Austin

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Celebrating Central Texas food culture, season by season

Number 25 Winter 2015

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no. 43 / winter 2014

Quicks Hole Tavern ● CBI’s Farm Manager Joshua Schiff ● Cape Cod ARK ● R.A. Ribb’s Custom Clam Rakes

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Farmers’ Markets, Food and WWI I on Cape Cod ● Off-Shore Lobstering ● Pawpaws ● Cultivating Crustaceans

N O.29 WINTER 2015

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Fall Comfort Food OBERLIN • GRANARIES OF MEMORY • INTEGRATION ACRES • STONEFIELD NATURALS SCHMALTZ • THE APPLE • WILLOW BASKETS • OHIO’S HISTORIC BARNS

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Issue 30 | February–March 2015 $5.95

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celebrating vermont’s local food culture through the seasons

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Cracking Spring HILLBILLY ACRES FARM • GRAVY • SASSY SAUSAGE BIANCA’S FRIDGE • BEER FOR BREAKFAST BACKYARD CHICKENS • SONNY SALT

| Chocolate: A Sweet Tradition & The Sweet Smell of Success | A Cut Above | Pot Luck

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Winter 2012-13 · Celebrating Local Food, Farms, and Community in the Nutmeg State · Number 24

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Celebrating the Bounty of Rhode Island, Season by Season

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ISSUE 21 • SPRING 2014

Santa Barbara Good food. Good drink. Good read. • No. 24 • Spring 2014

Celebrating the Local Food and Wine Culture of Santa Barbara County

Recycle, reuse, reclaim, rethink

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The Art of Small Farming Tending Henry The Perfect Salad MEMBER OF EDIBLE COMMUNITIES

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No. 24, Harvest 2014

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Lenoir

Located in the heart of South Lamar. Barlata offers a variety of tapas, paellas, regional Spanish wines and cavas. Come and enjoy a bit of Spain with us. 512 473-2211 1500 S. Lamar Blvd., Ste. 150 barlataaustin.com

Lenoir is an intimate, family-run restaurant offering a weekly, local prix-fixe menu, great wine and friendly service. 512-215-9778 1807 S. 1st St. lenoirrestaurant.com

Blue Corn Harvest Bar & Grill

Snack Bar

Blue Corn Harvest Bar & Grill is a farm-to-table restaurant located in Cedar Park. Locally owned and operated, we keep Cedar Park fresh! 512-528-0889 700 E. Whitestone Blvd., Ste 204 Cedar Park bluecornharvest.com

Cafe Josie

Thai Fresh Thai Fresh offers authentic Thai food, cooking classes, coffee bar, gluten free bakery. We source locally grown and raised ingredients. 512-494-6436 909 W. Mary St. thaifreshaustin.com

Local Heroes Join us in celebrating the Heroes of local food! Simply visit the link shown below to vote for your “Best Of” nominations in the following categories:

ocal Her

CH

EF

East Side Pies

Kerbey Lane Cafe is a local Austin haunt serving up tasty, healthy food (mostly) 24/7. Stop by any of our 6 locations for a delicious stack of pancakes! 512-451-1436 kerbeylanecafe.com

Serving the Texas Hill Country fresh and seasonal favorites using local ingredients. 512-847-7327 111 River Rd., Wimberley leaningpear.com

Cook smarter, not harder! We are here to help you put delicious meals – using local fare – on the table in 30 minutes or less. 512-900-5801 7318 McNeil Drive, Ste 109 gourmetbynumbers.com

Make It Sweet At Make It Sweet, you can find tools, supplies and ingredients to make cakes, cookies and candies and learn fun, new techniques in the classes offered. 512-371-3401 9070 Research Blvd. makeitsweet.com

L

D SHOP

Farm / Farmer

ocal Her

L

Food Artisan Beverage Artisan

FA

F RM / ARMER

Non-profit Organization

L

VOTE ONLINE NOW!

ocal Her

www.edibleaustin.com/heroes

FO

Just click on the link to cast your votes. It’s fast and easy!

O D A RT I S A N

ocal Her

Voting Deadline is February 15, 2016 This year’s winners will be announced in our May/June — Beverage Issue 2016.

BE

VE

R A G E A RT I S

ocal Her NON

EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM EDIBLEAUSTIN.COM

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o

The Leaning Pear Café & Eatery

Gourmet by Numbers

FOO

o

Kerbey Lane Cafe

SPECIALTY MARKETS

Food Shop

o

We offer a carefully selected and prepared take on French bistro fare with wonderful wines all served amidst the intimacy and charm of Texas Hill Country. 512-847-5700 16920 Ranch Road 12 Wimberley jobellcafe.com

The daily menu is based on local artisans. Wink happily embraces omnivores, vegetarians, vegans, pescetarians and special dietary issues. 512-482-8868 1014 N. Lamar Blvd. winkrestaurant.com

ocal Her

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Jobell Cafe & Bistro

Wink Restaurant & Wine Bar

NT

o

An Austin Tradition since 1939 featuring Grassfed Longhorn Beef and bison burgers. 512-472-0693 807 W. 6th St. hutsfrankandangies.com

Your destination for food prepared from locally available, seasonal ingredients. 325-646-8200 514 Center Ave., Brownwood theturtlerestaurant.com

Chef / Restaurant

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Hut’s Hamburgers

The Turtle Restaurant

/ R E S TA U R A

o

512-524-0933 1401B Rosewood Ave. 512-454-7437 5312 G Airport Blvd. 512-467-8900 1809-1 W. Anderson Ln. eastsidepies.com

o

Established in 1997, Cafe Josie strives to provide our guests with a memorable dining experience focusing on using locally sourced ingredients. 512-322-9226 1200 B W. 6th St. cafejosie.com

A nostalgic Austin café + lounge, cultivating community and camaraderie by providing a truly hospitable environment and serving accessible, ethical foods. 512-445-2626 1224 S. Congress Ave. snackbaraustin.com

L

Barlata Tapas Bar

PROFIT

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PADDLING A CHEF BY A N N E M A R I E H A M PS H I R E • P H OTO G RA P H Y BY A L I SO N M I L LS

T

he 2015 Edible Austin Chef Auction Charity Event

der’s house and a custom-made knife by Weige Knives, but not

was held on October 8 at The Allan House, where some

to be outdone, Cole kept sweetening the deal from the stage—

of Austin’s best chefs generously contributed their tal-

upgrading to 15 courses, then adding “all the sake you can drink.”

ents, time and temperaments while an eager audience sat ready

His clever strategy paid off: Bidding for the package ended with

to raise the stakes, and their paddles, for a chance to bid on some

an $8,250 pledge and a victorious mic-drop from Cole.

extraordinary culinary packages—all for a good cause.

The spontaneous, good-natured rivalry didn’t stop there.

The evening began with hors d’oeuvres prepared by the auc-

Amanda Lindquist of Stella San Jac also infused the auction with

tion chefs, wine by Alexander Vineyards, beer by ABGB and

energy when she upgraded her package to an additional night at

cocktails by Paula’s Texas Spirits, Republic Tequila and Treaty

the Westin Austin Downtown and added seats for two additional

Oak Distilling. Approximately 150 guests then convened for the

people to the original private chef ’s table for eight on the roof-

live auction. Kelly Stocker of Yelp emceed the event while ce-

top pool deck. And Paul Gaither, the winner of the 2014 Travaasa

lebrity auctioneer Walt Roberts kept things lively and moving

package, participated in a heated bidding war on the same pack-

quickly. Competition was definitely in the air—among both bid-

age this year to make sure he won again.

ders and biddees—as the event unfolded. The Franklin Barbecue

The biggest prize of the evening, of course, was the resulting

package—which included a private backyard barbecue with Aaron

financial support raised—more than $50,000—that benefited two

Franklin at the winning bidder’s home for 20 to 25 guests, as well

local nonprofits who truly “walk the walk” of strengthening our

as other goodies—sold for $8,000. It was the highest bid of the

local food system: Sustainable Food Center and Urban Roots.

night, until Tyson Cole of Uchi/Uchiko fame took the stage with the rallying cry of “I’m not going to be beaten by barbecue!” Cole’s package already included a rare private dining experience for eight to 10 guests prepared by Cole at the winning bid-

To see a full listing of the 2015 auction packages, as well as get details about the 2016 Edible Austin Chef Auction Charity Event, visit edibleaustin.com

Clockwise from left: Ringmen Tommy Merchant and Jim Bob Bigon with auctioneer Walt Roberts; auction bidders on The Allan House terrace; platter of hors d’oeuvres; “top chef” Tyson Cole with emcee Kelly Stocker.


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We are part of a growing consciousness that’s bigger than food— one that champions what’s good, and the greater good, too. Where value is inseparable from values.

The Fresh Issue 2016  

With this issue, we’d like to expand our application of “fresh” to more than just food. We want to also focus on fresh concepts, solutions,...

The Fresh Issue 2016  

With this issue, we’d like to expand our application of “fresh” to more than just food. We want to also focus on fresh concepts, solutions,...

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