The Makah Ozette Potato Presidium – Spring 2012

Photo by Yunhee Kim for Sunset Magazine

Makah Ozette potatoes with bacon cream. (Photo by Yunhee Kim for Sunset Magazine)

In the 1980’s an unknown fingerling potato was recognized to be a staple in the diet of Pacific Coast Native Americans of the Makah Nation. The Makah occupy the region around Neah Bay, Washington, that is the most northwesterly point in the United States. Tribal lore reported that this potato had been used by these people for about 200 years. The Makah had named this potato the Ozette after one of their five villages located around Neah Bay.  More about the Ozette and how it became part of the Ark of Taste can be found here. The presidium is focused on increasing seed production to bring more seed to market. Here is where those efforts stand currently:

  • After flooding annihilated the seed crop of 2010, our partner Pure Potato had to start again with the three year process of producing an abundant crop of certified seed potato. A project they had just completed. We are grateful they are willing to do it again.
  • The Certified Generation program starts with PreNuclear minitubers. These are first grown in “test tube” then planted in the green house.  The resulting crop of mini tubers is planted the next year for reproduction in the field and then classified as Nuclear.  The following years they are classified as Generation 1, 2, etc. as long as they remain within the disease parameters specified by the Department of Agriculture.
  • This Spring Pure Potato will plant 32 pounds of PreNuclear Makah Ozette minitubers in the field. This should yield approximately 30 one hundred pound sacks of Nuclear seed potato. In the spring of 2013 they will plant 16 sacks per acre that will yield 200 sacks per acre.
Makah Ozette Potato

Makah Ozette Potato

The question for Pure Potato is; how much to plant and how much to sell in 2013? We need potential growers to tell us of their intentions and to get on the list for notification of availability by emailing marlys@purepotato.com.

Next year, 2013, depending on the yield, there may be a limited supply of Nuclear Generation Makah Ozette seed potatoes for sale at $2.00 per pound. The plan is to keep reproducing this variety and increase the volume to meet the needs of all those interested in growing it.

This spring there is some seed available from Potato Garden (800.314.1955, cdrockey@potatogarden.com).

Gerry Warren
Presidium Coordinator
cgw@speakeasy.net, 206.818.5366

Resources:

For the history and back story of this potato go to the Makah Ozette Presidia page at Slow Food USA or here for more.

Makah Ozette Potato brochure [PDF]

Pure Potato
marlys@purepotato.com
360.354.6555
9020 Jackman Rd
Lynden, WA 98264

Potato Garden
cdrockey@potatogarden.com
800.314.1955
12101 2135 Rd
Austin, CO 81410

Wild Salmon Returns to Washington’s Coast, Streams and Dinner Plates

Salmon. Photo: Barrie Kovish

Salmon. Photo: Barrie Kovish

As the calendar turns to May 1st – hooks and lines will be deployed from the sterns of Washington’s salmon trollers as the commercial fishing season officially opens. Once again, the Pacific Fisheries Management Council with the input from fishermen and fisheries biologists have checked the numbers, done the math and deemed that Washington’s Chinook salmon runs were strong enough to support a commercial fishery in 2011. Though this will sound counter intuitive, a commercial fishery means a good thing for health of wild salmon.

The survival and restoration of wild salmon is the top priority for fisheries managers. If the salmon numbers are not at a sustainable level, not one hook is allowed to meet the surface of the ocean or the lip of a salmon and fishing boats stay tied to the dock. Fishermen have long recognized that not fishing is sometime a necessary hardship face in order to fulfill their roles as stewards of the natural resource known as wild salmon. But stewardship of wild salmon is not just something for commercial fishermen and fisheries biologist to be concerned about. Eaters of wild salmon can also do their part as stewards of wild salmon. And yes, eating them is one of those things! The action of eating salmon reminds us with each delicious bite why we need to be conscious of our actions away from the dinner table and in other parts of our lives that might directly or indirectly affect the survival of wild salmon.

Conservation Area at Full Circle Farm, Carnation, WA. Photo: Roddy Scheer

Conservation Area at Full Circle Farm, Carnation, WA. Photo: Roddy Scheer

Take the simple act of brushing your teeth. The habit of turning the water off while brushing can save a gallon of water each time you polish your pearly whites. One gallon, twice a day for 365 days…okay, 730 gallons of water! Why is this important? Salmon need fresh cold water in streams, not down drains, to complete their life-cycles. Same goes for washing your car. Using the car wash not only saves water but all the chemicals and oil that make your car dirty are filtered before they go down the drain and out to sea. Wash your car at home and the waste water washes into a gutter untreated or soaks in to your lawn on its way back to the ground water system. And lawns? Plant a rain garden or a drought tolerant variety of grass and limit the use of fertilizers and other chemicals.

If you would like to visit the streams that will be benefiting from your newly found water conscious ways, consider volunteering for an afternoon of habitat restoration with a local salmon conservation group such as Long Live the Kings, Mid Sound Fisheries Enhancement Group or the North Olympic Salmon Coalition. Or what about joining Slow Food Seattle, Edible Seattle and the Stewardship Partners on Saturday, May 28th on the banks of Griffin Creek and the Snoqualmie River at Full Circle Farm near Carnation, WA to do your part to save wild salmon by restoring a stretch of water essential to salmon spawning success? It is your choice whether wield a shovel or a camera. All levels of activity and support are welcome.

For more information and to register to participate please contact Stewardship Partnership’s Volunteer Coordinator, Alex Ko. Once you register you will receive complete details and directions.
Share on Facebook too: RSVP on Facebook too!

Should you decide to join us for the work day, here are a few things to bring and remember:

  • It is the Pacific NW so dress in layers, bring rain gear, gloves and wear sturdy shoes or boots.
  • Bring your own snacks and water.
  • You will be outside and ‘facilities’ may be limited.
  • Come ready to work but be mindful of your own limitations. Please don’t over do it!

To read more about wild salmon habitat, check out the story in the May/June edition of Edible Seattle.

See you down by the Creek!

- Amy Grondin, Slow Food Seattle Board Member

Flowers and Barn at Full Circle Farm, Carnation, WA. Photo: Roddy Scheer

Flowers and Barn at Full Circle Farm, Carnation, WA. Photo: Roddy Scheer

Nominee for Slow Food USA’s Ark of Taste: The Sugar Hubbard Squash

Slow Food’s Ark of Taste aims to rediscover, describe and publicize forgotten flavors around the world. Through the Ark of Taste program, Slow Food USA has a catalog of over 200 delicious foods in danger of extinction. Since 1996, more than 800 products from over 50 countries have been added to the international Ark of Taste. By promoting and eating Ark products we help ensure that they remain in production and on our plates.

The mission of the Slow Food Ark of Taste is to preserve traditional tastes and to celebrate them, by introducing them to the Slow Food membership and then to the world. All of the foods on the Ark of Taste are heritage products that have real economic viability and commercial potential for the communities that grow, produce or harvest them.

Since it’s inception, Slow Food Seattle has successfully boarded four regional food products onto the Slow Food Ark of Taste including Olympia Oyster, Marbled Chinook Salmon, Geoduck, and Makah Ozette Potato (our only Presidium product). Slow Food Seattle’s latest Ark of Taste nomination is the Sugar Hubbard, a sweet heirloom winter squash with a unique Puget Sound heritage. Former Slow Food Seattle Co-Chair, and Puget Sound Food Network Project Manager, Lucy Norris, recently wrote about this important heirloom in the winter 2010 issue of Edible Seattle.

Read the full story in Edible Seattle, or download a PDF version.

Sugar Hubbard Squash

The Sugar Hubbard Squash, grown at Sherman's Pioneer Farm Produce in central Whidbey Island, is Slow Food Seattle's latest nomination for the Ark of Taste.

Sherman’s Pioneer Farm Produce in central Whidbey Island grows the only commercial crop of Sugar Hubbard in the country. It is the result of combining traditional blue Hubbard and Sweetmeat squash, inheriting the best flavor and texture characteristics of both. The Sugar Hubbard is a nutrient dense, starchy squash (with a high glycemic index), but also very high in vitamin A, exceeding USDA requirements for Beta Carotene. Most winter squash varieties are interchangeable in recipes, and the Sugar Hubbard is nutty-sweet and the colored deep orange like a marigold. Try it in a favorite recipe that calls for winter squash, and you’ll be impressed.

The Sugar Hubbard has an excellent flavor, and it’s uniquely local to Puget Sound, with a strong family heritage. It has every asset required for boarding onto Slow Food’s Ark of Taste. Slow Food Seattle’s interest in boarding this product on the Ark of Taste will send a signal to conscientious consumers and help boost market demand in our area. Voting with your fork helps food producers like the Sherman’s remain profitable in the business of farming in our region. Only the best tasting endangered foods make it onto the Ark, and we think the Sugar Hubbard is a great fit.

Find the Squash
Peeled squash cubes are available at all Whole Foods locations in Oregon and Washington as long as the supply holds out. Liz and Dale continue to look for additional retailers for their squash. Sherman’s Pioneer Farm Produce is located at 46 South Ebey Road, Coupeville, WA. Contact Liz or Dale Sherman at 360.678.4675.

Looking for recipes?
Spice Loaf – by Editor, Edible Seattle
Chili Stew – by Lucy Norris, adapted from an original recipe by Liz Sherman

Excerpts with permission from Edible Seattle.

Dale Sherman in his field of Sugar Hubbard Squash

Dale Sherman in his field of Sugar Hubbard squash. Photo: Lara Ferroni

Lucy Norris is Project Manager for Puget Sound Food Network, a project of the Northwest Agriculture Business Center, former co-chair of Slow Food Seattle, and author of Pickled: Preserving a World of Tastes and Traditions.

Reflections on the Changing Seasons, Terra Madre and the Quillisascut Farm

By Amy Grondin

Walking my dog each morning through the fields near my home gives me a chance observe the changes that turning seasons bring. Today there was a definite nip in the air signaling for me that autumn was seriously taking hold and the summer that many say wasn’t had passed. If you are a farmer, you see the changes in your own fields as crops come in and out of season. For shoppers, the offerings displayed in Farmers Market stalls act as indicators of the changing seasons. Summer sweet berries give way to crisp apples, thin skinned summer squash are replaced by their hearty, thick fleshed winter cousins and delicate greens and shoots fall back for chard, kale and collards that cascade in green-purple waves on market tables, awaiting their turn in a sauté pan.

For me the coming of fall also finds me planning ahead for winter yet remembering the experiences and tastes of the past summer. One of the finest experiences, loaded with sun ripe flavor and hands on experience, was my week spent in early August at the Quillisascut Farm School for the Domestic Arts in Rice, Washington for the Second Annual Slow Food Youth Workshop.

The first Slow Food Youth Workshop was proposed in October 2008 by Quillisascut Farm owner Lora Lea Misterly while attending the third Terra Madre gathering in Torino, Italy. Terra Madre is an international celebration of sustainable small scale food producers. It is hosted biannually by Slow Food International. At Terra Madre, religion, language barriers and debates are all set aside, not because the organizers ask that these differences be checked at the door, but because what is shared in common by the multicultural participants is so very powerful. All that attend Terra Madre are striving to preserve, foster and share their own unique way of producing sustainable food that is good, clean and fair.

During Terra Madre’s proceedings a challenge was issued by Slow Food USA Leader Josh Viertel for all in the room to bring Terra Madre home. Folks were asked to bottle up the energy and inspiration that was generated by the 5,000 people who were brought together from far reaching corners of the world. Once back home, how would each attending continue their work to produce good, clean and fair food while inspiring other to become a part of the sustainable food network?

The Slow Food Youth Workshop would be Lora Lea Misterly’s way to bring Terra Madre home. People between the ages of 18 and 29 would come to Quillisascut Farm for a week of learning first hand where their food comes from and how to embrace the seasonality of local goods. How lucky were Kim Bast and I to be standing next to Lora Lea at Terra Madre when she hatched the idea to host a workshop on her farm! While our status as youth had been officially dropped a while back, our role would be to assist at Quillisascut while learning with others through shared agricultural and culinary tasks.

Back home in Washington, with two Slow Food Youth Workshops completed, I happily report that a total of 22 Slow Food Youth representatives have visited the Quillisascut Farm. They have willingly taken on the duties of caring for goats and poultry, learned about organic gardening and had first lessons in making cheese with farm fresh goat milk. They have cooked meals together using the fruit, vegetables and meat raised on the farm, and have been overheard expressing their pleasure that the sustainably grown food they had followed from the field to the plate actually tasted better! Energized and relaxed at the same time by the rhythm of life on the farm, all shared increased awareness that our differences are our strengths and that respect, sustainable, biodiversity, community and enough are more than words – they are concepts to live a life by.

Much more than sustainable food was cultivated during the time spent on the Quillisascut Farm. And we have much to share! This past August four of the people attending the second annual Slow Food Youth Workshop were from Seattle. Two attending the workshop were sponsored by Slow Food Seattle – Andrew Heimburger from Seattle Culinary Academy and Erica Carre from FareStart – and two were sponsored by their workplaces – Ryan Stoy from Rainier Club and Anna Bazzi from TASTE at SAM.

 

These four exceptional individuals have agreed to work together with me to plan an event that will allow Slow Food Seattle members to meet them, hear their stories from the Quillisascut Farm and raise funds to send others from the Seattle area out to the Quillisascut Farm School for Domestic Arts in Rice, WA for the third annual Slow Food Youth Workshop in 2011! Stand by for updates and event details in November…But until then, please enjoy this recipe created by Chef Karen Jurgensen while teaching at the Quillisascut Farm School for Domestic Arts:

Jacob’s Cattle Bean, Kale and Chèvre Soup
The goat cheese adds a delicious tang to this comforting soup. The heavy cream binds the beans together and makes the soup thicker, so resist the urge to substitute whole milk or half-and-half. Because of the high fat content, this soup freezes well. Note: Canned beans are not a suitable substitute as the beans make their own stock and sauce.

Makes 8 servings

  • 2 cups (about 12 ounces) Jacob’s Cattle beans or other white beans, rinse and soak overnight (3 parts water to 1 part beans, soaking water reserved)
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons (¼ stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 medium carrot, diced
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1½ cup tomato purée
  • 1 cup chopped preserved roasted red peppers (store-bought is fine)
  • 1 bunch black kale (or other kale), about 8 to 10 leaves, stemmed and chopped
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon red chili flakes
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1½ cups (about three-quarter pound) soft goat cheese
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Kosher salt

Put the beans and soaking water in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and skim foam from the beans. Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and add the salt (the water should taste lightly of salt). Cook about 1 hour, until the beans are soft in texture and creamy in flavor.

Meanwhile, in another saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat and cook the carrot, celery, yellow onion and garlic, until the mixture is soft but not brown. Stir in the tomato purée, red peppers and black kale. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes and add salt to taste.

When the beans have finished cooking, stir in the vegetable mixture, bay leaves, thyme and chili flakes. Cook for about 20 minutes, then add the heavy cream, goat cheese and black pepper. Cook for 15 minutes more, then season to taste with salt.

Variations: In summertime use fresh tomatoes, peppers, and thyme. For a lighter minestrone-style soup, leave out the heavy cream and goat cheese.

— Recipe excerpted from Chefs on the Farm: Recipes and Inspiration from the Quillisascut Farm School for the Domestic Arts by Shannon Borg and Lora Lea Misterly with recipes from Karen Jurgensen and photography by Harley Soltes (Skipstone).



Join the conversation: Ben Hewitt author of “The Town That Food Saved”

The Town That Food SavedJoin Slow Food Seattle for our first foray towards an ongoing book club. We’ll be doing a combination of partnerships with Kim Ricketts Book Events and connecting with the incredible resources of our local authors. If you’d like to be involved, drop us a line or come to the event this coming Tuesday.

This is the first event in a series on food, sustainability and community called “Edible Conversations” and will take place on June 8th at 7pm at Tom Douglas’ Palace Ballroom. Jill Lightner, the editor of Edible Seattle will interview Ben Hewitt about his life as a farmer, and the way a group of farmers and entrepreneurs banded together to create a comprehensive food system and revive the dying economy of Hardwick, Vermont.

Like many rural communities in America, Hardwick, Vermont was build on a industry that had packed up and left long ago, and the town had suffered from a depressed economy for over a century. With an unemployment rate of 40% and in the middle of a crippling recession, a small group of young farmers and community leaders embarked on a quest to create a comprehensive, functional and vibrant food system, bring jobs to their region and create new ways for them to make a living off their farmlands. As Ben tells the story of his one town’s transformation, there will be lessons for all of us who believe that a healthy, local agricultural system can be the basis of community strength, economic vitality and food security.

Joining Jill and Ben will be local chefs, Sequim farmer Kia Kozun of Nash’s Organic Produce, Chris Curtis, the Director of Seattle’s Neighborhood Farmer’s Markets and Mary Embleton, Director of the Cascade Harvest Coalition.

Brown Paper Tickets

contact us for SFS supporter promo code

**Slow Food Seattle supporters receive a significant discount – contact us for the promo code or sign up for our mailing list to receive directly.**

(Tickets here; RSVP details on Facebook)

The $25/person price includes appetizers and Theo chocolate confections; a cash bar will be available as well. Copies of The Town That Food Saved will be available for purchase and signing at the event.

Ben Hewitt

Kim Ricketts Book EventsEdible Seattle

Bringing Terra Madre Home, Part II- Event tickets on sale now!

On Thursday, November 5th, Slow Food Seattle and FareStart will be hosting a special dinner to raise scholarship funds for the 2010 Slow Food Youth Workshop at the Quillisascut Farm School for the Domestic Art in Rice, Washington.

Guest Chef Karen Jurgensen of the Quillisascut Farm will prepare a three course meal of seasonally available ingredients with wine pairings to bring the taste of the Farm to the dinner guests in Seattle at FareStart. Featured will be the traditional farmstead goat cheeses from the Quillisascut Farm.

A slide show and presentation on the 2009 Slow Food Youth Workshop at the Quillisascut Farm will be presented by Danny Barksdale, Adriana Rose Taylor-Stanley and Amy Grondin.

What: The Slow Food Seattle Quillisascut Farm Student Scholarship Fundraiser

Where: FareStart, 7th & Virginia (downtown Seattle)

When: Thursday, November 5th, 6pm

Cost: $50 per member (plus tax and gratuity) $60 non-members

Purchase tickets today!

http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/86237

Slow Food Youth Workshop at Quillisascut Farm School of the Domestic Arts, August 6-12, 2009

By Amy Grondin

Nina in the garden

Nina in the garden

I was fortunate to have been invited by Lora Lea Misterly to assist her in leading the first Slow Food Youth Workshop at the Quillisascut Farm in the second week of August. Lora Lea and I met each other for the first time in October of 2008 at Terra Madre. Terra Madre is Slow Food International’s biennial meeting that brings together international food communities, cooks, academics and youth delegates for four days to work towards increasing small-scale, traditional, and sustainable food production. In Turino, Italy during the fourth week of October, the third edition of Terra Madre hosted representatives from over 150 countries. The guests together were human links in the food chain, supporting sustainable agriculture, fishing, and breeding with the goal of preserving taste and biodiversity. Once back home in Washington, Lora Lea’s idea to host the week long Slow Food Youth Workshop at the Quillisascut Farm was her way of sharing our experience at Terra Madre with young people who are interested in small scale and sustainable food systems. On the farm 13 youth had a chance to experience life on a working farm. While those attending were all considered youth, between the ages of 18 and 29, they were from varied backgrounds, communities and levels of education. The commonality that brought them all together was a passion for food, a desire to learn about how we produce what we eat and a willingness to open themselves to a completely new vision of what it meant to be part of a food community.

Group photo

Group photo


For most people, food is what they purchase mindlessly from the counters of a grocery store, neatly wrapped, packaged and portioned. Little or no thought goes into where the food is from and how it came to be available to go home in the trunks of cars and find its way to dinner tables. The week on the Quillisascut Farm gave each student a chance to experience milking goats and then creating cheese from the milk in the buckets that were carried from the barn. Vegetables tended in garden were harvested in the morning, washed and chopped in the afternoon to be cooked lovingly for dinner that evening. On goes the list of food that was produced on the farm and prepared with all our hands to nourish us that week – eggs, chickens, apricots, honey, goat – all products of earth and hard work that rewarded each of us with full stomachs and the knowledge of how our meal made its way to the table.

This knowledge also reminded us of our role as members of a food community. We were reminded that as consumers we are not removed from but active participants in our food community. The more educated we are on where and how our food is produced, the more we can support all in our food community – the farmers, harvester, distributors, grocers and other consumers. By making informed purchases we can help to keep the greater communities we live in economically strong and environmentally healthy.

Learning on the farm

Learning on the farm

Each day on the farm offered not only education from working with our hands but also from daily discussions based on powerful words: sustainability, respect, biodiversity, community, grateful and enough. The hour long talks around the 15′ long common table in the Quillisascut Farm’s kitchen invited all to reflect and share how these words are used in our culture and how the meanings of these words could guide us as we develop our own value systems that will lead us through our lives. Each day brought the students greater trust in each other through the shared tasks of farm work. That trust was revealed daily as the students shared more freely of their thoughts during the morning meetings. By the end of the week the 13 strangers who had arrived on the farm had become a community of diverse individuals bound together through shared experiences. They understood that while community is often a place based thing, a community could also be formed by individuals who share common goals, work or ideals.

In an effort to continue to share the lessons learned on the Quillisascut Farm, plans are in the works for the students to make presentations for their local Slow Food chapters based on their experiences from the week. Local Slow Food chapters sponsored half of the tuitions for the students to attend. Reporting back to the local chapters will encourage more sponsorship for future Slow Food youth groups to travel to the Quillisascut Farm.

One such presentation will be led by Danny Barksdsale, a Seattle based chef/instructor at FareStart, and Adriana Rose Taylor-Stanley, a University of Washington student and member of the UW Farms Program. Both individuals were sponsored by Slow Food Seattle to attend the Slow Food Youth Workshop on the Quillisascut Farm. Their presentation will be part of the November dinner prepared by Chef Karen Jurgensen at the FareStart facility in Seattle. The dinner will be held to raise scholarship funds for the 2010 Slow Food Youth workshop. With slide show to offer images of farm life, Danny and Ariana will tell of their shared week on the farm and do their part to add two more youth’s names to the growing community of attendees to the Quillisascut Farm School for Domestic Arts. Additionally, Danny has proposed that he and I work on planning day trips to farms in the Seattle area for the students he teaches at FareStart. FareStart is a nonprofit that helps homeless and disadvantaged individuals achieve self-sufficiency through life skills, job training and employment in the food service industry. Danny wants to somehow share his Quillisascut experience with his Seattle students who most likely have never seen a farm.

Danny surrounded by abundance

Danny surrounded by abundance


I could go on for many more pages about the powerful time that was shared with the students who formed the first group attending the Slow Food Youth Workshop this past August at the Quillisascut Farm. Much more could be said about the beauty of the land and generosity of

Lora Lea and Rick Misterly in opening their home to strangers and for giving us a glance at what they have learned from 30 years of farming. But the best thing would be for Slow Food members to join Danny, Ariana and me at FareStart on November 5th for dinner and conversation about our week on the Quillisascut Farm in Rice, Washington. We invite you to have dinner with us and learn more about the lessons learned on the farm that will help us support and form our own communities, from place based to food based and all in between.

Here are some links for Happy studentsfurther reading:

Terra Madre: http://www.terramadre.info

Quillisascut Farm: http://quillisascut.com

FareStart: http://farestart.org

UW Urban Farm: http://students.washington.edu/uwfarm