Chef April Goess from the CIA

June Walsh loves to tell people that her daughter works for the CIA — the look on their face is truly priceless.  It is even more priceless when they discover that the CIA June is referring to is the Culinary Institute of America, and April is a trained chef teaching on their campus in San Antonio Texas.

April grew up here in Humboldt County and spent quite a bit of her youth working in some of our local landmark restaurants like the Eureka Inn and the Benbow Inn.  A great beginning for someone destined to make a career working with food.  April made her way back to Humboldt for a visit in August 2016 and taught a couple of classes to help raise funds for the Humboldt Botanical Garden Foundation (a cause near and dear to June’s heart).Chef April 1 Chef April 2

Listen here

Find out more about the CIA in San Antonio Texas

Dave Feral, Feral Family Farm

If you have cruised the Arcata Farmers Market in the fall — you have probably seen Dave Feral from Feral Family Farm.  He is whipping up delicious fruit juice blends that are delicious and fresh — and are saving some of the “ugly fruit,” helping them to fulfill their destiny with humans in Humboldt.  So many decades of grocery stores training us to choose unblemished fruit and veg –no matter how undelicious they are — and we are the losers.  Some of the best tasting fruit has a little scab here, a little bruise there — and many of these are ending up in the fruit juice produced by the Feral Family.

Listen here!


IMG_1361 I know — I normally write about interviews with local food producer — but then there are times I get rambunctious and make something a little out of the ordinary. IMG_1360 Like Miso!  I got the recipe from a book by Sandor Katz, renowned guru of all things fermented.  I made a batch — and about 16 months later it was ready! And so I decanted it into individual jars and…well…I had a lot of miso.  I don’t use that much miso — and I still didn’t know if I made “good” miso — so I gave some to my friend Michele Harrison.  She and her partner eat a lot of miso — and she gave me the stamp of approval.  IMG_1362So…I made more!  I made four times as much — two crocks full to the top.  One I made in the traditional way with soybeans — and the second I made with Paul Giuntoli’s Swedish Brown Beans.  it will be ready in September 2017.  Stay Tuned…

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Ed Cohen, Earthly Edibles…Artichokes!

Growing up Portuguese…or maybe because I grew up in the Bay Area near Salinas…we ate a lot of artichokes.  Some call them a sponge for mayonnaise…and I certainly don’t skimp when I prepare mine.  Later on I realized that some people dip the ends into melted butter, a little more upscale than my Best Foods Mayo.  I was so happy when I started seeing lots and lots of great looking and great tasting artichokes at Ed’s stand at the Farmers Market.  One of the nicest thing is that they are available in very early spring — so when I shop I can get both artichokes and asparagus (and a jar of Mayo!).

Some things I didn’t know about artichokes is…that Marilyn Monroe was the first Artichoke Queen (of course she was…) and that artichokes are our “state vegetable”…I have to admit…I didn’t know we had a state vegetable.  In Salinas, they sell T-shirts with pictures of artichokes and they call them Portuguese Pineapples…I definitely see the similarity in the way they look…but that’s where it ends.

Ed Cohen’s artichokes have really taken off — the day before he came in for the interview they planted 10,000 artichokes — so ladies and gentlemen — prepare yourself for having that option from early spring into winter.  YUM!

Listen here or check out the Earthly Edibles

Anna Lappe, Small Planet Institute

If you are like me…50-something or even more chronologically gifted, you remember Frances Moore-Lappe’s book Diet for a Small Planet.  Nothing short of revolutionary — for so many people it was life changing, many people converting to vegetarianism virtually overnight.  When I heard that Frances’ daughter Anna was coming to town to be the keynote speaker at the Food Summit, sponsored by the Food Policy Council, I knew this was my opportunity to have a conversation with her.  Anna is the author of many books and travels throughout the world speaking about food security and sovereignty.   Through the great work of May Patino at the California Center for Rural Policy, located at Humboldt State University, it happened!

But you know how it is — so many questions and only 10 minutes for an interview — so of course I asked what it was like at the dinner table growing up with Frances Moore-Lappe.  Listen here for the interview and check out the  Small Planet Institute

Erin Derden-Little, Community Alliance With Family Farmers

There are so many items that are heavily processed — items that loosely fit the description “food” since they are mostly by processing the real food right out of them — and the companies that make these foods spend more to market these items than what they spend for the ingredients that go into them.  Now let’s look at the lowly beet…delicious to many, unknown entirely to many more…who is speaking up for the beet, and for the beet farmer?  Well the Community Alliance With Family Farmers (CAFF)  is one of the organizations that is working on this very issue.  And — our very own Erin Derden-Little is at the forefront of this effort.  Erin leads the Know Your Farmer and Farm to Cafeteria Programs in the Humboldt Region. One of the things those big-time marketing agencies knows is that you must make it as easy as possible for people to purchase you product — and Erin has been working hard to make this a reality in Humboldt.  To find out more, check out the website for CAFF — and listen to the interview with Erin.

Kevin Pinto, FV Jenna Lee

If you have lived in the Eureka area for any length of time you look forward to the sign that appears on 4th St.  Live Crab!  and the name of the FV (or Fishing Vessel) is the Jenna Lee.  Getting your own live crab off the docks puts you one step closer to hunting and gathering — closer to the person who risks their life going out there to get it for you — spend any time out at the Marina on Woodley Island you might have happened by the Fishermen Memorial…and close by that is a column listing the names of all those who have lost their lives at sea.

So one day I thought I’d pop on down to the Marina and give my new HD video camera a spin — and that’s when I met Carol Pinto aboard the Jenna Lee with their adorable sea-dog.  Carol kindly held up a wiggly crab for me to videotape — but let me know that Kevin was the person I needed to interview for the radio show.  I learned a lot of things about crab fishing that day — but perhaps the most important thing I know about cooking live crab is that you should use seawater…it makes for the tastiest meat!  If you are a bit squeamish about tossing a live animal into a pot of boiling water, you can always find your crab already cooked at many of our local markets — but when you are ready to give it a try I think you will find that it will be the best crab you have ever eaten.

Find out more about the Jenna Lee and Kevin Pinto, listen here.

Corn Crib, Ginger Sarvinski

The corn crib in Pepperwood is a great place to get organic corn, and other vegetables!  And you don’t have to drive down there, Ginger and family can be found at various Farmers Markets throughout the county.  She talked me into getting a case of tomatoes when I already had seven cases waiting for me at the CR Farmers Market — and I roasted them in a 300 degree oven for several hours, which is where you will find the crossroads of savory and sweet in a carmelized slow roasted early girl tomato.  YUM!

Listen to the interview here!

Christa Sinadinos, The Northwest School for Botanical Studies

Foraging is always an interesting phenomenon to me — I am learning new ways to do it, including my latest foray into seaweed collection.  Christa Sinadinos grew up foraging with her Greek-American grandparents, winding up as the director of The Northwest School for Botanical Studies. Listen to the interview, and check out her website.

Chicken Harvest, Rhonda Wiedenbeck

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A couple of my friends are part of, what I call, a Chicken Cooperative.  They call themselves the Blue Lake Farm Wives and Mens’ Auxilliary.  Lin recently asked (ok, after I repeatedly begged) if I would like to come to one of their harvest days.  Later I asked Rhonda if she would come in to the station so I could interview her about the arrangement, to listen click here.

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