(Ed. Note: Since the 2017 Dungeness crab season just opened in the Bay Area on November 15, I thought I’d claw back into my CasaFestiva.com archives and serve up this post from December, 2006. Only minor edits have been to reflect the date of publication.) About Dungeness crab … crabby factoids … buying crab … some potent potable pairings … For many Central and Northern … Continue reading From the Archives: Dive into Dungeness
As you may have heard, we’ve been having quite the kerfuffle in these parts about trees. The short story: that big corporation that owns a big local winery has been playing fast and loose with our native oak trees. In contrast to that, I thought I’d offer up some good news about trees and agriculture. Some news about Kiler Ridge Olive Farm, a local olive … Continue reading Planting for Posterity
Every so often, it’s fun to do a chef profile for my Local Flavors column in the Tribune newspaper (San Luis Obispo County, California). I ask the chefs to pick a local and/or seasonal ingredient, explain why and how they’re using it in their menus, and how cooks at home might approach the product. Most recently, Chef Leonard Gentieu of Onboard Nautical Events in Morro … Continue reading Cook Abalone at Home for a Sustainable WOW Factor!
The original version of this article appeared in my “Local Flavors” column in the Tribune newspaper on April 9, 2015. In light of what recently happened with the West Coast sardine fishery (closed because the population has crashed), this is a look at a fishery that not only came back, but is now rated sustainable by Seafood Watch and the Marine Stewardship Council. This article … Continue reading A Line on Sustainable Seafood in Morro Bay
I’d always been curious about spot prawns, the colorful wigglers I’d see from time to time in the live tank at Pier 46 Seafood Market in Templeton. They seemed at once so ethereal, so primitive, so delicate, and so … sharp! Spot prawns, aka Pandalus platyceros, are technically shrimp, and not even prawns at all. That moniker comes from their reign as the largest member … Continue reading Off with Your Heads, Pandalus platyceros!
Come on, admit it. At some point in your life you’ve exuberantly purchased a six-pack (or two) of zucchini starts in the spring, and six months later your friends and neighbors are fearfully hiding from you because you’re always looking to pawn off zucchini the size of small canoes. Examples of such overabundance exist wherever food is grown – from backyard gardens to large commercial … Continue reading Gleaning the County’s Bounty for the County’s Hungry
There’s a lot of buzz about “sustainability,” but a recent panel discussion on January 23 (the latest event in the lecture series sponsored by Cal Poly’s CAFESCenter for Sustainability) proved that it’s here to stay – not just because it’s better for the planet, but because it can also offer businesses some significant savings to their bottom line. Indeed, one of the three tenets of … Continue reading When Life Gives You Onion Waste … Repurpose it!
The den of iniquity otherwise known asLas Vegas might seem an odd place for lessons on sustainability. Yet there, in the middle of all things Vegas, sits the Shark Reef Aquarium at Mandalay Bay, and no, it has nothing to do with card sharks. This impressive facility is North America’s only predator-based aquarium, which means that although sharks are the main event, you’ll also see … Continue reading Sustainability Message in Vegas?
Lots of great things at the 2011 Earth Day Food & Wine Festival this year – char siu tacos from Porter’s Gourmet on the Go, homemade shortbread and blackberry balsamic reduction from Chaparral Gardens, only 1.75 pounds (yes, pounds) of landfill trash generated from the entire event … Clearly, I could go on and on, but one of the coolest finds was Chamisal Vineyards’ Stainless … Continue reading Wine Kegs?