Saturday, October 12, 2019

Movin' On Up: Cooking Classes in an Actual Kitchen

Despite the fact that I'm working for Seattle Parks as a cooking instructor, I won't be cooking in the park. Hey, I love the outdoors, don't get me wrong. And I'll keep doing the Beacon Food Forest classes. But I like kitchens, too. And the kitchen at the Northgate Community Center is relatively swank.

So I'll be teaching there for a while. Check out my currently posted upcoming classes:

Eat Your Quince 

What's a quince? Find out and make and eat savory Persian quince stew and prepare sweet quince jam! Bring one clean ½ pint glass jar. At the end of this 2 hour course, students will be able to cook 2 recipes using quince: Quince Jam and Savory Persian Quince Stew. Please bring your own apron and containers to bring home your food in.

Cozy Winter Soups 

Learn how to make three easy, creamy, savory vegetable soups using basic ingredients. If you have some vegetables, a pot, a stove, and a blender, you are ready. Please bring your own apron and containers to take food items home.

You can sign up through the godawful Seattle Parks online registration site (course titles link directly) or you can walk in and sign up in person.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Cooking classes: I should probably hype them

I recently offered a pretty awesome cooking class at the Beacon Food Forest. We called it Cooking with Abundance. We scampered around the food forest, collecting leaves, fruits, berries, edible flowers, herbs, etc, and made some nice salads and stir-frys on propane gas camping stoves! I plan to do more cooking classes at the food forest and at the Northgate Community Center as some time slots open on my unfathomably complex schedule. In any case, the class was super adorable. Here are photos taken by Carla Penderock at the BFF:

Letting the class know I'm not going to teach

Picking wild peas and pea flowers

Checking out purple orach seeds

Stir fry 1

Stir fry 2

Any Berry Apple Salad with Random Greens

Lambs' Quarters garlic stir fry with day lily buds

Diana serving up the good stuff

Classmates sampling dishes

Sunday, July 21, 2019

I Fell Into The Baking Abyss

While it's true I'm teaching cooking classes now, I have also been absorbed in collecting and testing recipes for my next book, which is going to be about baking. I'm having trouble testing and re-testing all the recipes, as there are only so many fools at the office who will taste my baking on a regular basis. Stay tuned for photos of the success stories, perhaps. Eventually.

OK, months later, here ya go.

Arabic pita bread--nicely puffed!

Hand-made lefse in Bergen, Norway! 

Apple-plum stuffed almond empanadas

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Foraging in Seattle is Cookin' with the Food Forest

To encourage more people in their explorations of foraged foods, I will be leading some plant ID tours around Seattle's Beacon Food Forest between May-August 2019. Here is the flyer, below. 

Beacon Food Forest information can be found on their website:

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Oyyyyy Vey! Next Book...Coming Soon

Oh man, I haven't posted diddly squat since I published my last book. But that's because I've been working on my next book and not exactly thinking about randomly blogging into this here void.

Anywho, here's a sneak peak of a recipe from my next book, Some of That: Foraging in Seattle. My current plan is to make sure the book available in April on my Amazon author page.

Plum Excitement
(AKA Five Spice-Vanilla Plum Clafoutis)

Seattle is an excellent place to grow Italian prune plums because so many people have planted the trees and forgotten about them. Once you have your “plum eyes” on, you will be excited to find the trees dropping so much beautiful fruit! Ask your neighbors if you can harvest their fruit— maybe you can thank them later with a bite of this custardy plum dish if you don’t mind them suddenly wising up. Italian plums are especially easy to deal with because they can be eaten slightly firm or quite soft and they don’t seem to get bugs while they’re chilling there in the tree waiting for you. Their flesh doesn’t stick to their pit, so they’re a snap to slice open, cut up and dehydrate if you like. I’ll shut up now and say that the below is one of my favorite ways to use fresh plums! Be sure to use the heavy cream— this doesn’t taste as nice when you try to go low-fat. Substitute very ripe pears in autumn or (pitted) sour cherries in early summer if you hanker for the dish off-season. Double the five-spice powder if you want!


1 tablespoon soft butter

250 milliliters heavy cream (1 cup)
110 milliliters whole milk (1/2 cup)
2 large eggs
70 grams sugar (50-60 grams if you like things less sweet)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
seeds of a 1-inch piece of vanilla bean
½ teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder*

350-400 grams ripe pitted Italian plums, artistically sliced in strips to an equal thinness of about ¼-½ inch
2 tablespoons brown or turbinado sugar


Preheat the oven to 350° F and generously coat the bottom of a 9-inch glass or ceramic pie pan with the soft butter.

Whisk together the cream through five spice powder until fully combined, then pour about 2/3 cup of it into the dish. Bake 12 minutes.

Now add the sliced plums on top of the custard in a tidy, even arrangement, sprinkle on the turbinado sugar, and gently pour the rest of the custard mixture over the plums.

Bake for about 50 minutes. If that seems long to you, you can tent aluminum foil over it for the last 10 minutes. When it’s done, the custard will be puffy and pleasantly browned. It will still jiggle in the middle. Let it cool to at least “warm” level before consuming, but room temperature is best. It will be soft and yummy! To fancy the dish up, right before serving, dust lightly with powdered sugar.