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Archive for June, 2010

Baked Crepe Custard Cake

Sweet Cherries from Baird Family Orchards

It is cherry season: Pears may be the state fruit and locally, berries might come in more colors and flavors than a Crayola 8 pack, but cherries hold a special place in Oregon. The Bing cherry, the largest cultivar grown in the US, is from Oregon and is named after Ah Bing – An agricultural worker who, according to legend, either discovered or propagated the landrace in Seth Lewelling’s orchard. 12,500 acres of cherries are grown in our state and the crop brings in close to $30 million annually for Oregon growers. Although not market fresh, the process for preserving Maraschino cherries was perfected at Oregon State (go, Beavers) earning the fruit/preserve the distinction of being the official fruit at the Corvallis campus.

There isn’t a wrong way to enjoy cherries: In pies, in/on ice cream, thrown in iced peppermint tea, baked in cobblers, spooned over shortcake, topped with whip cream or mascarpone cheese or eaten straight out of hand. For me, there is only really one cherry dessert, and that is clafoutis.

Clafoutis (Cla-Fu-tea), translates as well, clafoutis with all the online translating tools. There really isn’t an English language designation for this dessert. In lieu of an exact word, the preparation can be described as baked-crepe-custard-cake. Cherries are baked in what is essentially a crepe batter and sprinkled with powdered sugar before serving warm (although it is pretty good chilled the morning after with a cup of coffee). The dessert is elegant, simple and delicious.

Clafoutis

Preheat oven to 425°. Use 1 Tablespoon of butter to grease the inside of a 9-inch pie pan.

Mix batter together by combining:

6 Tablespoons melted butter – Melt  butter on stove or in microwave; let cool.
2 eggs
1/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup milk
½ cup flour (cake flour if you have it, all-purpose is fine too)
2 Tablespoons cherry brandy (or 1 Tablespoon almond extract)

¾ to 1 Pound, pitted, washed and stemmed cherries.

Whisk batter together until all the lumps disappear and set aside to rest for a few minutes. Now is a good time to pit cherries*.

*Traditionally/historically, the pits were left in the cherries – imparting a subtle, bitter almond flavor to the dish. My teeth might not be the straightest or the whitest in the world but they have suffered enough with the orthodontia, caps and miscellaneous dental work – If you like your teeth, I strongly recommend pitting the cherries before baking.

Spread the cherries over the bottom of the buttered pie plate, pour the batter over the top, place in oven. Immediately, reduce heat to 350 and bake for 25 minutes. Like a custard or cake, the clafoutis is done when you can stick a knife in the near center and it comes out clean…you might need an additional 10 minutes of baking time.

Sprinkle powdered sugar on top and serve warm.

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June 26, 2010 Chef in the Market Demonstration by:

Todd Koebke, Culinary Arts Instructor at Sabin Schellenberg Center

Recipe:

Granola Crusted French Toast with Strawberry Rhubarb Compote

Ingredients:

1 pound strawberries

1/2 pound rhubarb

1/2 orange, juiced

1/4 C sugar

1 t cornstarch

1 loaf Market Bread, your choice

4 Eggs

1 1/2 C whole milk

1 t vanilla

1 T sugar

1 dash cinnamon

1/4 C butter

1 C granola

Directions:

  • Remove stems and hulls strawberries cutting each in half lengthwise. Add to a medium pot.
  • Trim rhubarb and cut in 1/2-inch slices crosswise. Add to pot with strawberries.
  • Add the orange juice to berries along with 1/4 cup sugar and cornstarch.
  • Stir mixture to combine.
  • Cover pot with a lid and bring to a simmer over medium heat.
  • Simmer for 10 minutes just until rhubarb is tender, stirring once or twice.
  • Remove from heat and set aside.

Meanwhile make French toast:

  • Slice loaf into 1 inch thick slices with a serrated knife.
  • In a medium bowl whisk together eggs, milk, vanilla, 1 T sugar, and cinnamon.
  • Pour egg mixture into a shallow baking dish, such as a 9×9 pan.
  • If granola is very chunky, place in a large Ziploc bag, seal, then bang with a rolling pin or heavy pan a few times to break up and large chunks.
  • Place half of granola on a plate, reserve the other half.
  • Heat 2 T butter in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat.
  • Working with 2 slices of bread at a time, dredge slice in egg mixture on both sides, press one side of egg coated bread slice into the granola on the plate, enough to lightly coat, then place slice in the hot skillet.
  • Sprinkle another T of crushed granola on the tops of french toast slice while it is in the pan.
  • Use the back of a spatula to press the granola into the bread.
  • Allow about 2 minutes per side, flipping over when lightly browned.
  • Repeat process with remaining slices of bread.
  • To serve, allow 2 slices of French toast per person with a healthy serving of strawberry compote.
  • Garnish with fresh mint..

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Around the Community

Slow Food Portland presents: A discussion on the interconnection between our food, industrial food workers, and immigration issues.

When: Monday, June 28, 2010, 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm
Where: Buchan Reception Hall in the Eliot Center, First Unitarian Church, 1226 SW Salmon Street
Tickets: $5 members/$6 non-members, Tickets available online here.

What do Slow Food members and food-industrial workers have at stake in each other’s challenges and goals? Join a diverse panel of speakers to take a look at our food system and the workers that help put food on our tables. What conditions do many of these workers face? What alternatives do they have, and how do their struggles affect us? How can we help make the food we eat as fair as possible for everyone involved?

This insightful and thought-provoking evening provides an opportunity to learn, listen and speak out about our food system, and the immigration and labor issues that relate to how our nation is fed. Help shape the discussion with your questions and comments.

This event continues our series on the People Who Feed Us.

The evening will include the following speakers:

Paul Apostolidis, Judge and Mrs. Timothy A. Paul Chair of Political Science, Whitman College
Paul is the author of ‘Breaks in the Chain: What Immigrant Workers Can Teach Americans about Democracy.’ The book examines American immigration reform through the stories of immigrant meatpackers. Paul has written extensively on immigrant workers, democracy, the U.S Labor Movement, women’s issues, and other social and cultural topics. He was President and founder of Safe Work/Safe Food, a community nonprofit organization supporting the rights of immigrant workers. He has served on numerous boards relating to human rights issues and won recognition for his leadership in developing social justice programs.

Aaron Bobrow-Strain, Assistant Professor of Politics at Whitman College
Aaron teaches and writes about global food politics. His forthcoming book, ‘Dreamworlds of the Store-Bought Loaf’ (Beacon 2012) is a critical history of food reform movements in the United States told through the lens of battles over America’s most loved and hated food icon–slice white bread. He has written on racial politics and land conflict on coffee plantations in southern Mexico, U.S food politics, and land reform policy in Latin America. He previously worked with BorderLinks, an organization advocating for immigrant and worker rights on the U.S. – Mexico border.

Larry Kleinman, Co-Founder and Secretary-Treasurer, PCUN
Larry co-founded the Willamette Valley Immigration Project in1977 and was co-founding member of Pineros y Campesinos Unidos del Noroeste (PCUN) in 1985. He has served as PCUN Secretary-Treasurer since 1988. Since 1977, he has been an accredited representative of Centro de Servicios para Campesinos, authorized to provide legal representation before the Immigration Court, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and the Customs and Immigration Service. The National Lawyers Guild National Immigration Project selected Larry as its 2005 Carol Weiss King Award recipient, honoring his many years of defending immigrants and their interests. He has served on many boards focusing on social justice and workers rights.

Mary Mendez, Deputy Director, Enlace
Mary started out as a worker in a food processing plant in eastern Washington. She engaged over a thousand of her co-workers in a successful union organizing campaign in the early years of NAFTA. In fighting salary differences between European Americans and Latinos, Mary was the first person to win an international grievance against the United States under NAFTA. Among other accomplishments, this effort compelled Mexico to charge the United States with violating the rights of the workers in Washington. She now works with Enlace, a strategic alliance of low-wage worker centers, as a trainer and a campaign coordinator. Today Mary specializes in helping groups build leadership from the ground up.

food_labor_immigration_flyer

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It has never not rained on a Thursday before (in 2010)(seemingly). How exciting are today’s two Markets? Every week in NW Portland, Food Front sponsors our not so brand new market (now that Monday’s Pioneer Square Courthouse has opened). Located at NW 23rd & Savier, this week Baird will there with cherries, New Leaf has raw foods tasty enough to make people who don’t get the raw food thing forget all that and just  enjoy the flavors. Grand Central has bread, Fairview cheese will return & if you think it is too late to get something in the ground, Blue Heron has herb starts. WAG has eggs in the NW. And Buckman has eggs too. And they have wee eggs. Beginning this week Reister Farm has quail eggs; $ 6 for a dozen – make all the tiny omelet jokes you want but a quail eggs taste good and look good on a plate. This week’s Buckman Market is the last day for Hansen nursery stock. Berries are aplenty- Liepold, Valley Berry, Unger and cherries too from Packer Orchards.

Cherries, Allison Jones

Saturday, Todd Koebke of Sabin Schellenberg will appear on Chef at the Market stage with our Allison Jones. The very same Allison Jones who has a photo credit on page 33 of this Month’s Sunset Magazine. Victory Estates and Jim Dixon will be dueling with Olive Oils. Seems like the cherries just got here and already there are rumors of peaches coming in from Gala springs! Janna’s Flowers & The Berry Patch: Oregon’s the nation’s 3rd largest producer of blueberries (we’re number one in blackberries); berries of all colors are trickling into our Markets as June closes out.

Sunday the hood is good. Well, the 18th annual Good in the Neighborhood Festival will be taking place in the usual spot where Sunday’s King Market takes place. Fear not, the King Market will take place on the same day with the usual vendors at the regular time (10-2) – only in the North parking lot. More food, more fun, more music and more activities to better enjoy what will be a 10,000% better day weather-wise than last week’s Market. If you haven’t been to King yet, bring the family and come out and meet your neighbors this Sunday.

Monday will be week 2 of our the Pioneer Courthouse Square Market. For up to the moment information about all our Markets follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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Pioneer Courthouse Square Video Tour

If you missed today’s fantastic market opening at Pioneer Courthouse Square, have no fear. Take a stroll through the market through the magic of digital video! (I’m working on getting the smells of Tastebud Bagels and fresh strawberries to come through your screen, but progress on the smell-o-vision is rather slow.)

Though the sun taunted the early-risers this morning, prompting a flurry of PDX sun-break tweets in the Twitterverse, the official first day of summer was ultimately yet another chilly gray example of Portland’s trademark Junuary. You couldn’t tell the sun’s been shy by looking at the array of produce that filled the Square, however. Zucchinis, tomatoes, cherries, blueberries, and basil were flaunting their colors and aromas, putting on quite the show. Maybe if we all take a hint from the fruits and vegetables by dressing in our brightest clothes the sun will hang around a bit more. It’s worth a shot!

We want to hear from you! What did you buy today? Any great bargains or early season surprises? I was so excited to see blueberries at The Berry Patch, and had a very hard time refraining from eating them all on the walk home. Share your own stories in the comments!

(Photos and video by Allison Jones, music by Sam Cooper)

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June 19, 2010 Chef in the Market Demonstration by:

Leena Ezekiel, In Good Taste

Recipe:

Palak Daal (lentils with spinach) and Mixed Vegetable Curry

Ingredients for Palak Daal:

2 C red lentils

4 C of water

1 t cumin powder

½ t turmeric powder

½ t cayenne pepper

2 medium onions, chopped

1 inch piece of ginger

2 T ghee

6-8 cloves of garlic, minced

2 medium tomatoes, chopped (optional)

1 bunch chopped fresh spinach

1 C cilantro, chopped

Directions for Palak Daal:

• Soak the lentils in the water for 30 minutes.

• Add the turmeric powder, salt, cumin powder, cayenne pepper and the remaining garlic, ginger and onions.

• Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer over medium heat until the daal is soft and creamy.

• Remove from heat.

• In a small saucepan, heat the ghee and fry the remaining onions, ginger and garlic until golden brown.

• Add the tomatoes and fresh spinach and stir well till spinach is wilted.

• Add this spice mixture into the cooked daal and simmer for 10 minutes.

• Garnish with cilantro and serve hot with rice or chappatis.

Ingredients for Mixed Vegetable Curry:

4 medium potatoes boiled and cubed

2 C fresh peas

1 C carrots, diced

1 cauliflower(optional), cut into small floret’s

2 T ginger/garlic paste

1 C fresh tomatoes, diced

1 t cumin seeds

1 t coriander powder

2 t turmeric powder

2 t freshly ground cumin powder

2 t red chili powder (cayenne pepper) (optional)

4 T vegetable or canola oil

2 t garam masala powder

Salt to taste

Fresh cilantro (chopped), for garnish

Directions for Mixed Vegetable Curry:

• Add the oil to a pan over medium high heat.

• When hot, add the cumin seeds. When they start to pop add the ginger/garlic paste and fry for a few, about 1 minute.

• Add the the dry spices in a small bowl of water to make a paste.

• Add this to the pot and stir well.

• Add the tomatoes and cook until the oil separates, about 2 minutes.

• Add the vegetables and salt and stir well.

• Fry for a few minutes.

• Add a cup of water if you prefer more sauce. Plain yogurt can also be added.

• Simmer until vegetables are fork tender, about 5 minutes.

• Serve hot over steamed rice or flat bread.

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Last weekend, in the middle of the Portland farmers’ market at PSU, a cheerful group of youngsters enjoyed a personal, hands-on cooking class from James Beard award-winning chef, author, and local food systems expert Cory Schreiber. Strawberries were cut, cream was whipped, caramel and chocolate sauces were in abundance, and crepes were successfully flipped! Well, most of them were…

It was all part of the Portland Farmers’ Market’s ongoing Kids Cook program, where kids learn about the seasonality of food, meet local farmers and chefs, and gain first-hand experience preparing ingredients purchased fresh at the market. Classes include a guided market tour, hands-on instruction and recipes to take home so students can share what they learn with family and friends. What better way to teach kids the benefits of fresh, local food than by giving them a chance to cook (and eat) it themselves?

Sign up today for a chance to see your kids truly excited about new cooking skills and local food. For cost, class descriptions, and registration information, download the Registration Form. Advance registration is required, so grab a spot before they’re gone.

Check out the fun that awaits your kids every Saturday!

Season Schedule and Class Topics:

June 26
Smashed-Fruit Yogurt Parfait

July 10
Grated Carrot Salad with Peaches, Dried Cherries & Basil

July 24
Summer Vegetable Sushi

August 7
Stone Fruit Gazpacho

August 21
Super Summer Salsas

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