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East Bay Appetizer • October 10, 2013

DIY (Do It Yourself) might just be the acronym of the decade, and at Edible East Bay we’re happy to promote the enjoyment of creativity in every way! Here are some great opportunities to learn about growing and producing your own food and engaging with your creative spirit. Remember to spread the word and encourage your friends to sign up for East Bay Appetizer!

Join the Alameda County Master Gardeners at…

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One of the best learning opportunities of the year for local gardeners is coming up October 26. “The Wild & Wonder of Bay Area Gardening,” presented by the Alameda County Master Gardeners at the Lake Merritt Garden Center, covers the garden cycle from dream to harvest with 12 timely workshops led by outstanding garden experts. Attendees can choose three 90-minute classes from the list below:

IMAGINING
The Beautiful Edible Garden  Leslie Bennett & Stefani Bittner
Lawnless Landscape  Kelly Marshall
Planting a Food Forest  Christopher Shein

DIGGING IN
Weeds: Yank ‘em or Thank ‘em  Mark Brunell
Winter Veggies in Wonderland  Pam Peirce
Coping with Critters (Safely)  Andrew Sutherland

ENRICHING
Small Gardens: Right Plant, Right Place  Susan Handjian
Herbal Delights  Rosemary Loveall-Sale
Creating Habitat for Wildlife  George McRae

HARVESTING
The Almighty Tomato, Drying Herbs & Other Edibles, and Very Berry Jellies & Jams
El Dorado County Master Food Preservers

A registration fee of $45 covers the cost of morning refreshments and all workshops. Participants may order an optional boxed meal to enjoy while viewing free lunchtime demonstrations on composting, tool sharpening, and native California plants. Herbs, books and gardening tools are available for purchase.

To register and learn more about the seminar go to the Master Gardeners website.  Sign up now and let the registrar know that you learned about the event through Edible East Bay!

Have a glorious day in the garden!

 

The 27th Annual Emeryville Art Exhibition

Teresa Kalnoskas, Four Figs, 24”x24”, oil, alkyd, wax on canvas, 2013

Teresa Kalnoskas, Four Figs
24”x24”, oil, alkyd, wax on canvas, 2013

 

October 5 through October 27, daily from 11am to 6pm, 5699 Bay St, Emeryville.

Come celebrate the creative spirit of the East Bay as you learn about the many artists living or working in Emeryville and contributing to the city’s cultural vibrancy. The works on display demonstrate the diversity of Emeryville artists and show their engagement with a host of aesthetic, political, and social concerns. Independent curator and exhibition designer Kathleen Hanna is curator and juror. The other 2013 jurors are René de Guzman, Senior Curator of Art, Oakland Museum of California, and Sandy Simon, potter, owner of TRAX Gallery, Berkeley. Works on exhibit are for sale.

Admission is free. For more information visit emeryarts.org or call 510/652-6122.

 

DIYne Out
Restaurant review by Kristina Sepetys

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BUILD
Pizzeria
Berkeley

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Hungry for a restaurant DIY-experience? Check out BUILD Pizzeria, located in the old 1906 Morse building on Shattuck in downtown Berkeley. The place specializes in wood-fired thin-crust pizza “simply done, with the best ingredients,” according to owner Lisa Holt. UC Berkeley students, families, and large groups are discovering the spacious restaurant with its stylish décor.

Diners can choose from among seasonal pizza specials like the sweet and savory Autumno, currently on offer, which features micro-greens, toasted walnuts, black mission figs, Laura Chenel goat cheese, and smoked mozzarella. Those with a mind to create their own combo can head over to an area designated “Building Department” and begin with a base of white cheese, house-made pesto, or tomato marinara, finishing with choices from dozens of toppings like nitrate-free pepperoni, imported prosciutto from Parma, or a mix of wood-fire roasted crimini and portabella mushrooms in truffle oil. Gluten-free options are available too.

If all the different choices seem overwhelming, helpful servers are ready to guide you through your selections, giving your instructions to one of the pizzaiolos. There’s even a take-back guarantee if your creation doesn’t thrill the palate like you’d imagined.

In addition to pizzas, there are appetizers, salads, and desserts. Look for Strauss Creamery soft-serve ice cream or the house-made budino (Italian-style custard pudding), topped with caramel, sea salt, and mascarpone cream.

Adults in the crowd might appreciate the wide range of beverages on tap, from a large selection of beers (including Berkeley’s Trumer Pils) to a number of California wines (Iron Horse, Au Bon Climat, Qupe, and Coppola, among them). Artisanal cocktails, served from an expansive bar, include hand-cut ice cubes.

“Organic” and “farm-to-table sourcing” are buzzlines, online and at the restaurant. Holt says, “We source heavily from farms in Sonoma, and also get produce from Napa, Yolo, Alameda, and Monterey counties.” Given the attention to sourcing, customers might be interested to know more about exactly who the farmers and food artisans are and what they’re supplying.

10pizHolt and co-owner David Shapiro’s previous developments include Milliken Creek Inn & Spa and Hotel Yountville in Napa Valley. BUILD is their first East Bay project. “We chose Berkeley because of its rich history—it’s the home of slow food in America,” said Holt.

Build Pizzeria Roma
2286 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley
Follow the restaurant on Facebook for updates on seasonal offerings.

Photo Credits: Charlotte Peale

 

 

 

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Sunday October 20, 10am-5pm
At Park Day School and Studio One, Temescal District, Oakland
(Entrance at 42nd and Manila)

Foraged Table Photo above by Kevin Feinstein. Photo at top courtesy of Park Day School (John Orbon)

Foraged Table
Photo above by Kevin Feinstein. Photo at top courtesy of Park Day School (John Orbon)

The Maker movement has been getting an increasing amount of press worldwide, but did you know it includes food making and makers? Urban homesteaders and farmers; foragers; food canners, fermenters and dryers; suppliers and sourcers of local ingredients are all included. Many are ancient traditions, newly reborn and celebrated in this do-it-yourself, do-it-together movement. The 2013 East Bay Mini Maker Faire features a large selection of demonstrations and hands-on activities to increase your knowledge and inspire your creativity. Want to learn butter-making? Cook in a solar oven? Keep bees and harvest your own honey?

It’s all here at the East Bay Mini Maker Faire’s Homesteading and Sustainability section. Not to mention great food and local beverages. A great day out for all the family, supporting the East Bay’s marvellous makers!

Advance tickets and info: ebmakerfaire.com

 

Saving the Last Tastes  of Summer
Book review by Kristina Sepetys

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Put ‘em Up! (Storey Publishing, 2010) and
Put ‘em Up! Fruit (Storey Publishing, 2013)
By Sherri Brooks Vinton

Sherri Brooks Vinton

Sherri Brooks Vinton

Farmers and home gardeners are currently resting their hoes for a moment as they come up with strategies for putting up all the delicious late-season fruits and vegetables to hold on to those summer delights as long as possible. Author Sherri Brooks Vinton offers some excellent tips for drying, freezing, canning, and pickling in her two well-organized and information-packed books, Put ‘Em Up! and Put ‘Em Up! Fruit. You’ll find dozens of recipes for dried and frozen fruits, chutneys, gastriques, infusions, jams, pickles, salsas, vinegars, and delicious combinations like Blueberry Ketchup, Pear and Honey Preserves, Peach Melba Compote, Grapefruit Sections in Lavender Syrup, and Dried Orange Zest

Recipes from Put ’em Up!

If you’re like me at this time of year, you can’t help feeling a bit desperate as you walk past all the bins at the green grocers filled with bright red, dry-farmed and super sweet Early Girl tomatoes, or the waxy, lustrous Jimmy Nardello and Corno di Toro peppers, knowing their seasons will soon be finished. Below are recipes from Vinton’s books to help you to hold onto their goodness for enjoyment through the winter!

TOMATO CHUTNEY
Makes about 7 cups

“I am a fan of all kinds of chutneys, with mango, tamarind, and coconut being favorites. Their combination of sweet and savory flavors, heightened by a generous dose of spice, wakes up even the blandest of dishes. For this recipe, I usually use Amish Paste tomatoes, an heirloom variety that is very meaty and productive, and cook them down with warm spices. The result is a chutney that is a little sweet, tangy, and spicy all in one bite.”       —Sherri Brooks Vinton

10booktom4 pounds plum tomatoes, preferably heirloom, peeled, cored, and diced
1 pound red peppers, seeds and ribs removed, diced
1/2 pound yellow onions, diced
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup raisins
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon yellow mustard seeds
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Combine the tomatoes, red peppers, onions, sugar, vinegar, raisins, garlic, ginger, cumin, mustard seeds, salt, allspice, and black pepper in a large nonreactive pot. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently to prevent scorching. Reduce the heat and simmer until thickened, about 30 minutes.

Remove from the heat. Allow the chutney to rest for 5 minutes, giving it an occasional gentle stir to release trapped air; it will thicken slightly. Skim off any foam.

Editor’s note: Sherri Brooks Vinton suggests that you either cool, cover, and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks or can the chutney using hot-water-bath instructions. These are available in her books, but can also be found through other reliable resources, such as USDA or Ball, the company that manufactures canning jars and other canning equipment. Always can safely.

ROASTED PEPPER KETCHUP
Makes about 4 cups

10bookpep2 pounds tomatoes
2 pounds red bell peppers
1 medium onion, chopped
1 cup cider vinegar
1 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
1 tablespoon salt
2 garlic cloves, sliced
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

Prepare an ice-water bath in a large bowl or clean sink. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Drop the tomatoes into the water, no more than 1 pound at a time, and return to a boil. Blanch for 1 minute. Scoop the tomatoes out of the water with a spider or slotted spoon and plunge them into the ice-water bath. Continue blanching the tomatoes in batches. Remove from the ice bath and drain. Peel, core, and crush the tomatoes.

Char the bell peppers, peel, and roughly chop.

Combine the tomato pulp, peppers, onion, vinegar, brown sugar, salt, garlic, allspice, cinnamon, and cloves in a large nonreactive saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes until the onions are translucent. Remove from the heat and purée with a stick blender. (Be careful of the boiling mixture – hot things are hot.)

Return the purée to the heat and simmer over low heat until thickened, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Remove from the heat.

Editor’s note: Sherri Brooks Vinton suggests that you either cool, cover, and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks or can the ketchup using hot-water-bath instructions. These are available in her books, but can also be found through other reliable resources, such as USDA or Ball, the company that manufactures canning jars and other canning equipment. Always can safely!

Recipes, preserved food, book covers, and Vinton photo used by permission from Storey Publishing. Tomato and pepper photos by Charlotte Peale.

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