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Recipes, resources and food inspiration from people and places in Kitsap County. By Kitsap Sun Web Editor Angela Dice.
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Bremerton will have a second farmers market on Sundays

Friday, July 15th, 2011

Bremerton will have a Sunday farmers market on the boardwalk near the fairy ferry terminal starting July 24.

The Bremerton Farmers Market association announced the extra market Thursday.

Unlike the second market two years ago created after a market leadership disagreement, this new market is born of an attempt to liven up the city on Sundays and will be run by the same organization that runs the Thursday market at Evergreen Park.

Bremerton farmers market organizers were approached by city council members after Bremerton and Port Orchard agreed to run foot ferries on Sundays, said market manager Julia Zander.

Bremerton’s Thursday market has been growing with more vendors making more than last year and greater attendance (particularly on sunny days), Zander said.

Market leaders also have been working with the port and business associations. Bremerton councilman Roy Runyon offered to pay half the market’s insurance fee out of his own pocket, she said. The market association is working on securing funding for the second half.

“We think there’s a lot of momentum,” she said. “People are really excited about this.”

The market plans to run from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and will be the only formal farmers market on Sundays in Kitsap County. The market’s last day will be Sept. 25.


Poulsbo Farmers Market to stay open into December

Friday, July 1st, 2011

Poulsbo market goers will be able to buy local goods through December.

The Poulsbo Farmers Market association announced last week that they would remain open through Dec. 17, and likely will open earlier next year, said market manager Brian Simmons.

The market this year already had opened earlier than in years past on April 9.

“We’ve been talking about it for quite a while now,” Simmons said.

They polled farmers and other vendors and have discussed a year-round farmers market with the Kitsap Community and Agriculture Alliance.

The market also has been in talks with the city and the Port of Poulsbo to gain support for a covered, permanent location for a year-round farmers market in Poulsbo.

Thus far, no decisions have been made on that front.

“We can’t pay retail rent … we need a special situation,” Simmons said.

Which can be a tough sell in this economy. But Simmons said some ideas being floated include a structure that could be used as shopper-friendly covered parking when the market isn’t open.

For now, the market is focused on being open for 10 months out of the year, Simmons said.

This autumn, the market will remain at the spot at Seventh Avenue and Iverson Street.

Market organizers are discussing ways to modify the site to make shopping easier on cold and rainy days, perhaps by clustering tents or offering a heated tent to offer shoppers relief.

The late market is likely to be smaller, Simmons said, and it may open later as daylight hours wane.

With an early heads-up, participating farmers may have time to sow cool-weather crops such as spinach, kales and chard, onions potatoes and winter squashes.

Since fall is slaughter season, the market also hopes to draw meat vendors.

And crafters and people who make preserved goods also will have a chance to sell wares as the holiday shopping season kicks into gear.


Food news roundup: restaurant news, Fourth of July grilling

Friday, July 1st, 2011

Kitsap News

The restaurant action, it seems, is on Bainbridge Island. Recently chef and food writer Greg Atkinson announced that he would open a restaurant on the island. Kitsap Sun’s reporter Rachel Pritchett talked with him about it for a story on Monday. By Wednesday, news had surfaced that Hitchcock, whose locally focused fine dining fare has been lauded by area food critics, may expand into the space next door, according to Bainbridge Conversation’s Tristan Baurick.

At Poulsbo’s farmers market on Saturday, Chef Tomas Nevarez, owner of the in-home chef instruction company Simmer Down will demonstrate creating a meal with locally harvested foods.

At Bainbridge Farmers Market, fstopcafé will offer a coffee roasting demonstration and tea tastings and a talk on tea.

Other Northwest News

Seattle Beerfest started Friday. The annual, often crowded, convention for beer geeks at Seattle Center promises 130 brews on tap. It opens at noon Saturday and Sunday. Cost is $25

I missed this last week, but apparently of note is that Seattle’s food scene is better than Portland’s, according to Sunset Magazine, which pitted top cities against each other. Hmmm, I envision a Portlandia episode in the making.

And now, I’m cutting this short so I can get to …

Fourth of July

Northwest weather guru Cliff Mass predicts that the holiday will get off to a cloudy start, but will sun up by the afternoon with temperatures in the mid-70s. That means, of course, prime grilling weather. Every food magazine out there has grilling guides and suggestions.

Personally, I’m not a fan of making all the food red, white and blue (that’s what decorations are for), but there are some more subtle colored-food touches such as red, white and blue potatoes as suggested by Bainbridge Farmers Market, or maybe a little blueberry, raspberry cobbler.

Coincidentally, as the Sea Life blog’s Jeff Adams reminded readers, this weekend also is open to crabbing season and “crabs are as Northwest’erican as espresso and apple pie,” he said. You can grill crab, though some suggest that (after cleaning it, of course) that you lightly wrap it in foil. Crab can be easy to overcook, so be gentle.

From the Food Life recipe archives (which I realize is a bit anemic), I can suggest Peruvian kebabs with roasted yellow pepper sauce, perhaps accompanied by grilled corn on the cob and for dessert, grilled nectarines with berry sauce, though blueberries may make a more seasonally friendly accompaniment than blackberries.

Also of note from the fine food publications out there, Saveur magazine this year offered a grilling guide that included a half dozen barbecue sauce recipes from Dr. Pepper sauce to Carolina gold, briskets and hush puppy or pickled sides (holy wow, why aren’t I eating right now?!). Southern Living boasts the “ultimate” grilling guide. And for those who want fewer calories, Cooking Light also has a Fourth of July recipe compilation.

As always, fell free to share any other suggestions you have for celebratory eating on the Fourth! Hope you all eat (and/or drink) well and stay safe!

 


Farm walk in Port Orchard tonight

Monday, June 27th, 2011

Something I apparently missed in last week’s food news roundup is the first of several educational farm walks hosted by WSU Kitsap Extension.

Here’s the press release:

Beginning June 27th at 6:00pm at School Bell Farm in Port Orchard, WSU Kitsap Small Farms Team hosts HOT SUMMER NIGHTS, a series of education farm walks to showcase the bounty of sustainable, small acreage farms.

Monday, June 27th – Small Acreage Livestock at School Bell Farm, 9795 SE Horizon Lane Port Orchard, WA 98367

All farm walks run from 6:00 – 8:00pm and are open to individuals and children over 12 years of age. The cost is $15 per family and pre-registration is requested. You can register online at kitsap.wsu.edu or at the gate! For more information on HOT SUMMER NIGHTS please contact Diane Fish at 360-337-7026 or by email at dfish@wsu.edu.


More on Kitsap Food Co-op’s location announcement

Monday, June 27th, 2011
Map of the Youth Wellness Campus

Design plan for the the Youth Wellness Campus in East Bremerton. Click to see the wellness campus master plan.

I wrote an article for Kitsap Sun Sunday on Kitsap Food Co-op’s announcement of it’s future location at the old East High School campus in Bremerton, and here I wanted to offer a few more details about the project and the post-announcement conversation I had with board president Laura Moynihan.

One of the most frequent questions board members have heard in the past couple years is where the co-op would be, a question that has been difficult to answer.

From my understanding of the co-op’s situation, it’s been a sort of chicken and egg dilemma for the co-op: they need enough members and capital (which comes, in part from membership fees) to secure a location, but some people are hesitant to put a $200 fee on the line before they knew where it would go and how viable this project would be.

Conceivably, the announcement of a location gives the group an additional selling point for membership.

“Were really lucky to name a location that doesn’t require an infusion of capital,” Moynihan said.

In addition, the group has drawn some influential backers, namely Mayor Patty Lent, local architect Steve Rice, who has helped the Co-op look at potential sites, and members of the Boys & Girls club (the club’s director of special projects Stacy Dore’ was at Sunday’s meeting).

The East Bremerton campus has been conceptualized as a center for youth wellness issues. The youth wellness center, which would offer classes on nutrition and cooking and exercise, was the brainchild of former Mayor Cary Bozeman (though originally slated for Bay Vista, formerly known as Westpark). A design created by world-renowned and Bremerton-raised architect Steven Holl has three wings, one for health-monitoring (which may now include a dental center), one for cooking and gardening, and one for  play.

There will be a lot of money to raise both for the Co-op and other players on the East Bremerton campus. The Co-op is expected to cost $3 million to open. The Boys and Girls Club estimates the cost of it’s facility at $4.3 million, and the wellness center is estimated at $14 million.

“This campus makes everybody more visible,” Rice said at the meeting.

“We’re all stronger as one thing together,” he added.

Though so much is tentative, Moynihan envisions partnering with the schools and/or Boys & Girls Club on a demonstration garden, which was part of the campus’ original concepts.

The plan also included a year-round farmers market (which still is in dream-phase in Kitsap), which Moynihan said could enhance the visibility of the Co-op, and could possibly mean another partnership with the Co-op, which other area co-ops have done, Moynihan said.

One other thing of note is that this would put the co-op nearly next door to an Albertson’s. That could be an awful lot of grocer competition in one place, but Moynihan said it also could be an asset, allowing people to hop over for items they can’t find at the co-op.

On the subject of partnerships, Moynihan also said that the Co-op, when opened, wants to talk with the school district or area restaurants about procuring food for them.

The Co-op store itself has originally been planned as a 10,000 square-foot facility, with a 1920s grange-style look. Included inside may be a cafe.

The guidelines for what products will be sold still has to be determined by members. The overall philosophy, though, will put priority on purchasing foods grown and made in Kitsap then working out from there.

As Co-op vice president Kristina Kruzan said at Sunday’s meeting, “First we have to have a co-op before we know what we’re going to have in it.”

As part of Sunday’s presentation, a prepared video with words of encouragement from Lent and Bremerton School District Superintendent Flip Herndon also included some snapshots of the building and early conceptual sketches for the store:


Food news roundup: Taste of Tacoma, Co-op announcement, recipes

Friday, June 24th, 2011

 

Events

The Taste of Tacoma runs Saturday and Sunday at Point Defiance Park. Admission is free, but the food is not. The TNT Diner blog has info on what restaurants are dishing up for the festival. More information on other entertainment is at tasteoftacoma.com

In the news of future events, Bremerton Summer Brewfest announced its lineup.

Kitsap Food News

The Kitsap Food Co-op, which has been gathering members and searching for a home has a “big announcement” coming on Sunday.

Poulsbo Farmers market announced that it would extend its season through Dec. 17. I’ll try to get more on that soon.

Kitsap Sun’s food critic Bernard Jacobson this week offered his review of Bay Street Bistro in Port Orchard. He gave it a 9/10 for both food and service.

Random

The Accidental Hedonist blog this week chimed in with some thoughts on locavorism, and why so much focus has been put on food. Also this week, the Kitsap Cuisine blogger also has a post on local food, imploring people to get more serious about food in Kitsap.

Recipes

On the Small Potatoes blog, Anne cooked up some savory veggie fritters/pancakes for what looks to be a simple weeknight meal.

At the Fat of the Land blog, Langdon Cook offers up a suggestion for preparing the influx of salmon at local markets as well as a use for morels in a recipe titled Salmon with Pinot Noir Sauce and Morels.

For a dish for larger gatherings, Orangette has a recipe for Deviled Eggs with Basil Ailoli and Capers.


Crimson Cove opens Poulsbo storefront to sell smoked goods

Thursday, May 26th, 2011

People who walked around downtown Poulsbo during Viking Fest last weekend may have noticed a new store on Front Street. Crimson Cove, which has been selling smoked salmon, smoked cheeses, nuts and other goods at area farmers markets during the past few years has opened a storefront.

Mark and Jody DeSalvo began selling smoked goods in 2007. They use alder and apple woods to smoke their goods from a building in Kingston.

The store, next to Sluy’s Bakery, has the same salmon and the variety of cheeses from blue to swiss that they’ve sold at farmers and other area markets as well as smoked salts, nuts, dips, crackers and salsas so boaters at Poulsbo marina can take back enough snacks for a day on the water. Plus, they have samples.


Could Kitsap have a year-round farmers market?

Tuesday, May 17th, 2011

Kitsap farmers are in nascent discussions about a year-round farmers market in the county.

At a Monday night meeting of the Kitsap Community and Agriculture Alliance, Nikki Johanson of Pheasant Field Farms kicked off a discussion among the roughly 30 attendees.

As farmers market seasons close up for the witness, she said, she’s increasingly heard vendors and customers wonder aloud where to go next for their local foods.

“People want local food … and they want it more than x-amount of months,” she said.

KCAA President Marilyn Holt said that additionally, for a commercial farmer to make it, the farm needs to be selling for 48 weeks out of the year. The farmers who don’t likely have to find additional sources of income.

Currently, most markets close in October. Poulsbo has a one-weekend Thanksgiving market and Bainbridge Island reopens its market in a new location in mid- to late-November and stays open for another month.

Year-round farmers markets exist elsewhere in the Puget Sound region. There is, of course, Pike Place, but also  Ballard, University District, West Seattle, Port Angeles and San Juan Island.

In downtown Everett, a developer plans to build a 60,000 square-foot agriculture center to house a year-round farmers market, and will include a commercial kitchen and processing facility The facility will anchor a 180-unit housing project. A nonprofit group of farmers will operate the market, which developers hope to have open for the 2012 season.

Some markets like Port Townend’s and Olympia’s are open until Christmas, which some at the meeting suggested may be a better option for Kitsap.

And what’s sold at these markets isn’t just soaps and jams, though the producing of the latter has recently been made a little easier with the passage of a cottage food bill in Washington .

The winter offerings are, of course, not nearly as abundant as what’s offered in the summer, but farmers are able to bring in squashes and root crops and dried fruits and vegetables.

And let’s not forget that animals are raised on farms, too. One farmer said she saw plenty of poultry at West Seattle’s market. For the same to happen in Kitsap, though, farmers would likely have to find or create a facility (possibly a mobile one) to process poultry.

Johanson said that additionally, she’s had success with hoop houses, which could allow her to have marketable produce in February and March.

But many questions remain.

Questions such as: Where would the market go? Would there be a single space or would it be better to extend the seasons of several markets? Would the market(s) be truly year-round or is it better to lengthen the season to, say, Christmas? Would there be enough time after planning to plant crops to harvest this winter? Can you draw enough customers? Would there be a high enough proportion of farmers to meet Washington State Farmers Market Association guidelines (and thus gain the benefits that goes with being a part of the association, such as insurance)?

And, importantly, would enough farmers be willing to extend what can be an exhausting work year?

That last question is one group members hope to address first.

They’ve asked farmers market managers — Bremerton and Poulsbo markets were represented at the meeting — to poll their vendors and will go from there.

And until I hear those results, I’m going to do a little polling of my own and, as always, please comment away.



A Look into the history of Kitsap farmers

Monday, May 16th, 2011

Just a short note for all of you local food lovers out there: If you haven’t caught it already, Diane Fish over at the Kitsap Farm to Fork blog last week started a series taking a historical look at farming in Kitsap.

She’s pulled together some great information and photos of the area’s agrarian roots, including a look at how early settlers blasted stumps away to clear the timber land; a mention of  early settlers and farmers; Bainbridge Island fruit growers; the first co-ops; and she found Kitsap’s first farmers market, which opened on May 20, 1922.


CB’s Nuts in Kingston grinding and growing

Sunday, May 8th, 2011
Peanut butter making at CB's Nuts in Kingston

Photos by Meegan M. Reid, Kitsap Sun

KINGSTON — If people had told Tami Bowen a dozen years ago that she could make a living selling peanuts, she’d have told them they were crazy.

Crazier still might have been the notion that not only could she make living but be on the verge of greatly expanding a nut business.

That was before Tami met Clark Bowen, the CB in CB’s Nuts.

It was 2003 and Clark was both running a family outdoor advertising business and selling roasted peanuts from a tent on Occidental Avenue in front of Qwest Field.

He’d been hooked on peanuts since munching on them during Mariners games, and decided to make a business out of them after falling in love with a bag of fresh-roasted North Carolina peanuts at Camden Yards in Baltimore. From there, he traveled through the South and convinced family peanut businesses to share close-held information.

Tami described her husband as a student, intense in his research.

“If I get interested in something, I’m going for it,” Clark said.

Clark Bowen fills the hopper with peanuts to be ground into peanut butter.

After they married, they prepared the nuts together in a roaster that screamed like a jet engine from a steel outbuilding at a friend’s house in Kingston. When neighbors couldn’t take it anymore, they moved the operation to their own home in Hansville.

By then, they were working with several grocery stores. Clark would go out and sell nuts and Tami would take care of deliveries in between their first child’s naps.

As sales grew, Clark sold off the sign business and in 2007 they bought a 1,000 square-foot building off Highway 104.

There, they expanded to other nuts and offered shelled nuts to stores with grinders for peanut butter.

Along the way, they developed a relationship with Whole Foods, which got them buying organic peanuts from New Mexico.

After a distributer accidentally delivered 10,000 pounds of shelled nuts, they found themselves in the peanut butter business too.

Much of the early peanut butter work was done in small batches with a lot of hand work.

Protective wraps of plastic on the peanut butter jars were shrunk with a hair dryer and labels were pasted on by hand.

Clark at first utilized an old Hobart industrial baking mixer to rub off the papery skin from the nuts. Batches were then shaken by hand on a screen to let the skins fall out.

Eventually, Clark got a lead on an old industrial skinner form the South that he had rebuilt and shipped to Kingston.
To make the butter, peanuts were ground in small batches in a grinder about the size of a microwave with a two-inch in diameter grinding wheel.

“It’s been really fun to figure out how to grow within our means,” Tami said. As one part of the business grows, they’ve built up around it.

The peanut butter has been selling well as customers grow comfortable with a fresh product with a suggested four-month shelf-life.

Add to that a growing desire for fresher and locally produced foods, and the company hit its peanut butter processing limit.

They applied for a business loan to buy a larger grinder, but were turned down.

That’s when Whole Foods suggested they apply for one of its local producer loans.

Still smarting from the costs involved with the other loan and the current state of the economy, “I thought maybe we shouldn’t do it at all,” Tami said.

But apply they did, and in mid-April they had their new, refurbished grinder up and running.

“This will really allow us to expand,” Clark said.

At full capacity, the machine, which has an 18-inch girding wheel, can process 16,000 pounds of nuts an hour, 20 times the peanut butter they were making before.

“It’ll take us awhile to get to full production,” Tami said.

Peanuts don’t grow overnight.

Clark will soon set out to visit their peanut growing partners in to see how much more they can supply CB’s going into 2012.

For now, they’re adjusting the grinder, seeing how much production they can manage. One of them goes in early in the morning, the other joins in the work in the afternoon.

“I consider this (business) the third kid … something we’ve grown from an idea,” Tami said.
And they’re planning for July, when they’ll take their first vacation in four years.


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About This Blog

The Food Life covers people, place and events involved in the food community on the Kitsap Peninsula and surrounding areas.
Written by Angela Dice. You can contact me at angela [at] angeladice.com.

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